Nothing can beat a good fantasy book, whether you get it for yourself or your kids. Sink into an unusual story, discover new creatures and a storyline that will make you forget about your daily worries and tasks. Bring in an urban scenario and you will feel like being part of the story. Throw in a few occult references and there is your perfect read. All in all, here are some of the best occult urban fantasy books to stimulate your imagination.

The Stars At Knight, by Rob Bartley

If you are familiar with urban fantasy stories, Kevin Hearne or Jim Butcher, you will love Rob Bartley‘s style straight away. The book is the first in a series of five different books. While there might be slight references between them, you do not need to take them in order – yet, it would help. Chances are once you go through this one, you will devour the other four in no time.

All in all, the story follows Mason Richardson. The oil engineer is 40 years old and his life seems to go well until he meets a billionaire with an incredible secret. He is soon enticed into a world where folklore, legends and the history of Texas come together in an unusual way. He reveals a world that no one seems to know about – powers, mystical creatures, secret orders and a destiny that he cannot control.

Ninth House, by Leigh Bardugo

Leigh Bardugo's story introduces the reader to Alex. Raised in Los Angeles by her mother, she drops out of school and joins the underworld. She ends up dating drug dealers and facing jobs with no future. By 20, she becomes the only surviver of an unsolved multiple homicide. As she recovers in hospital, she receives an offer to join Yale. Why her? What is this all about?

Trying to find answers, Alex pursues the offer and ends up discovering some of the most secret societies around Yale. She finds some tombs where all these cults gather and aim to control the world. From political figures to world renowned actors, it seems such occult activities target everyone and can become incredibly sinister. Is it all in her imagination? Will she manage to get out of this game safe?

Darkfever, by Karen Marie Moning

MacKayla's life is not the best, especially after her sister is murdered. There is a clue out there, but no one can figure it out. Before getting murdered, her sister sent her a cryptic message on the phone. Unfortunately, the message is not clear enough for the investigators to figure it out. But MacKayla takes this investigation to another level and starts her own work on the case, traveling all the way to Ireland.

Things take an unusual turn when MacKayla discovers an unusual world. She is cornered by the dark Jericho, while the alpha Fae V'lane corners her from a different direction. Each creature has their own goal. As the boundary between worlds starts crumbling, MacKayla has to struggle in order to stay alive. With time, she discovers that her sister's death is only the beginning of an incredible adventure.

Hexed, by Kevin Hearne

Atticus O'Sullivan is the last druid in the world and seems to enjoy life in modern Tembe, Arizona. But he is not the only one with such powers. A cult of witches seems to dominate the area. Atticus signs a beneficial treaty to prevent aggressive behavior, only to realize that the population of witches quadruples overnight. Even worse, the new girls are not just bad, but terrible – and they seem to have some history.

With connections to dark moments of World War II, the new witches start feasting on local students. One thing leads to another and Atticus has no clue what is going on. He is trapped between figuring out what the witches want and a sexy Celtic goddess trying to get his attention. Armed with a few weapons and lots of willpower, Atticus aims to show the witches that they picked on the wrong druid. Will he survive?

The Devil You Know, by Mike Carey

The Devil You Know is the first book in Mike Carey's series following Felix Castor. Felix is an exorcist with no actual connections to the church. In fact, he likes to describe himself as a freelance exorcist – he investigates unusual issues by himself and aims to clear demons without any external help. He hangs around London and his business seems to work wonders – he charges whatever he likes and his lifestyle is exquisite. But at the same note, he knows that one day, he will end up facing a powerful demon.

Anxiously waiting for this challenge, Felix fails to realize that it may pop up before he expects it. He takes over a relatively simple case of ghost hunting – something he has handled dozens of times before. The case takes place in a local museum. At a first glance, it looks like a basic case of exorcism, but it soon turns into a game. Which spirit can kill Felix first? The hunter becomes the hunted in a world that no one can truly understand. Will he manage to survive? Are the spirits the real challenges in this case?

Sunshine, by Robin McKinley

There are a few places out there that light will never reach. Darkness prevails and dominates such places – the type of places most people would avoid. This story follows a girl who lives in one of these places. The lake may seem quiet and peaceful, but it hides an incredible secret and she is aware of it. She knows vampires hang around, yet she has never seen them coming or popping up.

However, she has experienced their presence in the most grotesque ways. One time, her clothes disappeared. Then, her sneakers were gone. One time, she got dressed in a red gown. She knows that she is a target and she knows that one day, she will become dinner. But then, she finds a connection with a vampire and she wants to save him when the dawn breaks. Is she falling in love?

Grave Peril, by Jim Butcher

Harry Dresden is the only professional wizard around Chicago, so he obviously becomes the primary choice when someone needs something out of the ordinary. He has seen and done everything, from fighting terrifying vampires to killing giant werewolves. It is just part of the game for him, so nothing seems to bother anymore. However, things are about to change when Harry has to face something new.

Chicago seems to be taken over by ghosts. There are reports of haunted houses everywhere, but things go further. These ghosts do not stick to slamming doors or breaking windows only. Instead, they provoke violent accidents and kill people. Something is behind this havoc, but what is the reason behind it? It seems everyone who dies has a connection with Harry and he believes he might be the next target.

Rivers Of London, by Ben Aaronovitch

Peter Grant is a probationary constable. His dream is to become a detective for the local police force, but his superiors have different plans for him. He joins the case progression unit instead, where he faces no challenges whatsoever – just a boring job. But when a puzzle murder occurs, Peter gains some exclusive info on it from a witness. The funny thing is the witness is an actual ghost, so things could get messy.

Peter has an ability to communicate with the dead, which brings him to the attention of a local detective specialized in crimes involving magic. As more murders occur in different parts of the city, Peter is sent out to figure out what is going on. Is this the case he was waiting for? Is this the case bringing his well-deserved promotion to a detective?

Hidden Hope, by Elizabeth Knight

This book follows an astonishing story from a personal point of view. She has struggled to be out of her father's control for years. Eventually, she managed to secure her dream job in the ER. She could sustain her own lifestyle and everything was alright. She was even engaged – however, to a man that her father picked for her. The two got along pretty well, but good things would not last too long.

Her life changed when she found herself kidnapped. Her dream job was gone and so was her life. She ended up beaten, tortured and turned into someone else. Under pressure, she realizes that her whole life was a big fat lie. She had to get out of her comfort zone and discover things about herself that she had no clue about. She is all free now and she has nothing to lose. What is the going to do?

Bottom line, these are some of the best occult urban fantasy books out there. Not only will they give you a good thrill, but they will also expose you to worlds that are somehow related to your everyday reality.

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