Top Five Haunted House Horror Movies

haunted-houseSo, I have to turn in the car this morning to the mechanic for routine maintenance, but when I open the door to leave, I’m met by a guy who asks, “Name your list of the five best haunted house movies.”

We go back inside, chat a bit and I welcome him to put up a guest blog. So here’s HIS list along with some information regarding his latest book (the review of which will be posted on October 10 on



Hi all. My name is Melvin Rivers, the author of “Haven of Evil,” a horror book with a haunted house theme. “Haven of Evil” was inspired by many horror novels of course, but a few movies also inspired yours truly to write “Haven of Evil.” Since Halloween is coming up, I took the liberties to name my top five haunted house movies­—movies you can enjoy while getting the creeps over a bowl of popcorn during the Halloween season.

Haven of Evil” has something that is similar to each movie. (Something I did on purpose, since I’m a huge fan of each movie.) Without further ado here’s the list.

5. The Others (2001). Grace Stewart (Nicole Kidman) a mother who lives with her two young children in a remote country house in in the immediate aftermath of World War II. The children, have a disease that makes them sensitive to sunlight. After a series of eerie events, Grace begins to fear there are others in the house. This movie had a strange twist at the end. The others weren’t the ones movie goers had suspected. “Haven of Evil” also has a strange twist towards the end.

Movie trailer:

4. The Amityville Horror (1979). A movie based on Jay Anson‘s 1977 novel of the same name. A couple moves to a house with their children and things begin to get strange. This movie is a must see during the Halloween season. It has it all as far as a good haunted house movie is concern, from ghostly experiences to demonic eyes peering through the window. I thought about this movie while writing my book.

Movie trailer:

3.Poltergiest (1982). Ghosts are very active in this movie. A glass of milk spontaneously breaks, silverware bends and furniture moves on its own accord. The phenomena seem benign at first, but quickly begin to intensify. Later on, a tree in the backyard of the house comes alive and grabs a boy through the bedroom window. And strange things come through the Television set. What would you do if you live in a house like this? I know I would get out fast.

Movie trailer:

2. The Exorcist (1973). Technically speaking the Exorcist isn’t a haunted house movie. But evil does reside inside a house. Would you live in a house with a demon possessed child living only a few doors down from you? Well, I thought so.


Haven of Evil

Melvin Rivers

Genre: Horror

Re-release date 10/25/16

ISBN: 978-1494317461

ASIN: B01384ES70

Number of pages: 265

Word Count: 41,200 words

Cover Artist: Artrocity

Book Description:

Haven of Evil, a book of supernatural terror, contains bone-chilling terror that is unleashed on an unsuspecting couple who moves into their new home after a flood had destroyed the old one.

When Kevin and Sandra Wilson’s home and personal possessions were destroyed by flood waters, the couple relocated to a town called Havenville. Things started out rough when they avoided hitting a mysterious woman on the road. Later Kevin was attacked by hawks in a cemetery where a stranger rescued him. Kevin and the stranger become fast friends, but later the stranger wasn’t who he had appeared to be.

After some tragic and terrifying events Sandra goes into a murderous rage not long after Kevin finds out about an evil that dwelled inside their house–an evil that will change their lives forever.

In this tale of horror, some will live and others will not.

Book Trailer:


He turned to walk back home. A woman in a black dress stood a few paces in front of him. The woman’s eyes were black marbles embedded in a sunken face. Her white hair hung down over her shoulders like spaghetti strings, and there were more cracks in her face than there were on a broken sidewalk. A foul stench seemed to follow her around – the scent of rotting meat.

Kevin grimaced and held his nose. The horrid odor clung to him like stench on a decomposed corpse. “What in the –”

Leave that place now,” the woman’s voice gurgled.

He took a step back, fanned his nose, and spat. “You’re the woman I almost hit on the road.” He narrowed his eyes and scratched his head. “How – I mean, what in the –”

Don’t give in to the dreams or listen to him. You can’t defeat it.” She turned and pushed her way through a hedge of high bushes to the right of the highway.

Miss, what are you talking about?” He pinched his nose to keep the woman’s stench at bay and followed her through a stretch of woods, coming to an open field. A steep hill was not far away. “Hey, Miss, where are you?” he called, looking around. She was nowhere in sight.

She’s obviously crazy. I wonder if her family knows she’s out here. If she has family at all… he fanned his face and blew out a breath. That smell… how did it get on her?

Squawking came from somewhere above him. Kevin looked up to see hawks circling the area as if they owned it.

Kevin started up the hill when a hawk swooped down. He ducked. The bird soared past him and came up squawking, wings flapping and beak open. Kevin covered his face with his arms and ran. The animal’s talons, long and sharp, reached for his arms. Kevin sidestepped to the right and caught hold of a wing. He hurled the hawk with all his strength. The bird fluttered wildly before flying away.

He sat and breathed heavily while watching the sky in case the hawk came back. After resting, he climbed the hill and surveyed the view. There was, on the other side of the hill, a cemetery – the biggest he had ever seen. Headstones, grave markers, and crosses spread out over at least five-hundred acres. He descended the hill for a better view. Something snapped and he fell.

Oh, shit!” he screamed. He clenched his jaw against the pain and fought to keep back tears. He pried the mouth of an animal trap from his leg and staggered to his feet, managing to limp a few feet before falling again. He winced in pain.

A hawk flew down and perched on a headstone.

I’m going to die only a few yards from a cemetery. At least they won’t have to carry me far.

The bird raised a wing as if it was ready to attack.

No, I’m going to fight. I refuse to die out here,” Kevin said under his breath. He struggled to his feet. A knife-stabbing ache went through his leg. He went down on one knee. He slowly shook his head back and forth. “Must go on.” He got to his feet and glanced at the headstone. The hawk was gone. He hobbled to the hill.

I can make it if I crawl. A shadow loomed and covered the area in front of him. He heard heavy breathing from somewhere nearby. He stood still, balancing his weight on the uninjured leg. Something began snarling. He turned around slowly. Two menacing black eyes stared into his.

About the Author:

Melvin Rivers was inspired to write horror by imitating the writers of his favorite horror comics many years ago. As he grew older the works of Bram Stoker, Edgar Allan Poe, H.P. Lovecraft, and of course Stephen King grabbed his attention.

Melvin Rivers was born in the town of Luxora, Arkansas, and grew up in Memphis, Tennessee. He received a degree in Journalism from the University of Iowa. He lives in Cedar Rapids Iowa with his wife, dog and two cats. When he is not writing or surfing the web, he enjoys having a hot bowl of popcorn while watching his favorite horror flick on TV.

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