Occult detective stories?

What the heck are occult detective stories? They’re mystery/detective stories that have elements of supernatural horror, paranormal, or dark fantasy elements in a mystery-plotted story. These kinds of stories are hard to categorize, so I haven’t seen much traction on this site or on the old Wattpad forums. Are any of your interested in reading these kinds of stories? What examples of occult detective stories have you read (if you’ve read any)?

Let’s start a conversation, folks!

As for me, I wish there were more stories like this on Wattpad. I’ve only read the John Silence stories from Algernon Blackwood so far.


TBH this is the first time I’ve heard of them but it sounds interesting to at least give it a shot. I love a good paranormal horror story with a mystery twist.

Not sure about Occult detective, though I remember loving X Files growing up.

I’m more into “Paranormal Espionage” which is kind of like Occult Detective … but different.

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Yeah, occult detective is one of the weird hybrid sub-genres of mystery and paranormal/dark fantasy, which is why not a lot of people have heard of it. One of the most popular writers of the genre today is Jim Butcher with his Dresden Files book series. Some years back, there was an AU adaptation of his books, called The Dresden Files on the Sci Fi channel, but it only had one season.



I’ve heard of the X Files, but I haven’t watched it, and this is the first time I’ve heard of Paranormal Espionage, but I can see the similarities. Espionage books are more like thrillers, and detective books are mysteries, so adding a speculative or dark fantasy or paranormal element to an espionage thriller sounds awesome!

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Basically, imagine Bourn Identity meets Dracula.

One qualification I would make, Paranormal Espionage is what I like. In practice, my works ends up more like Cyberpunk, but with spy gadgets and vampires.

And real espionage is a lot quieter, maybe even more boring: it usually involves a lot more Information Gathering on computers, using Kali Linux software like Dmitry.


My mind is blown to smithereens! :astonished:

Vampire spooks? WOW! That sounds like awesome sauce!

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This is something we’ve talked about a bit in Dark Fantasy.

I haven’t specifically written one, but I like this genre.

Constantine, Dresden Files, Angel…


Spooks, I guess.

It should be noted sometime the line drawn between simply doing a duckduckgo search about questions you’d rather avoid asking someone directly, and actually using Dmitry can get blurry sometimes. Same with CaseFile.

And spooks assume a certain level of … intentional spying.

I still want to try Dresden Files.

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I loved the move, Constantine! But I also take inspiration in the genre from anime, like Ghost Hunt and Death Note, which emphasize the mystery and thriller elements. Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files is more on the dark fantasy scale.

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Yea I remember Death Note quite a bit. I remember this one guy at Anime Weekend Atlanta saying it was Twilight for Scene kids.

Clearly he didn’t understand Death Note.


I wish bought that Dresden File book when I had the chance, and it was on discount, too! :cry:

I think my own hesitation is I kept confusing it with Jim Marrs book of a similar title, that was about The Fourth Reich.

Was a little hesitant to try another Jim Marrs book, as that was part of what acquainted me with Billy Meier.

As an anime fan, as a fan of thrillers and mystery, I would’ve punched that guy in the face!

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Yea you and me both.

Even if my taste has evolved from Death Note to Elfen Lied, to something in between Serial Experiments Lain and Now And Then, Here And There.

Well not evolved, changed.

The writing style in some of the Dresden Files books strikes me as pulp and masculine.

I mean just as an observation, it seems that sort of style.

I like the premise a lot that Harry’s a consulting wizard.

The TV show was decent as well.

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Is it the same sort of style that my ex room mate noted about this one Science Fiction and Fantasy guy being all “Lady First through the door please, thank you ma’am.”

To me that’s worse than a guy saving a girl from being executed. * Barf

I think it’s meant the read like that, actually. Pulp fiction definitely has it’s own flavor of writing style, and I kind of like that style as well. And a consulting wizard was what drew me to the Dresden Files, because it reminds me a little of the Sherlock Holmes books.

Anyway, where was I? Oh yeah. Besides the John Silence stories (there are only 6 of them, actually) by Algernon Blackwood, there’s also Van Helsing from Stoker’s Dracula (that one’s an supernatural epistolary thriller with an aftertaste of steampunk), and Martin Hesselius from Le Fanu’s In a Glass Darkly, which follows a similar epistolary style in the beginning and endings of each of the stories in that collection. That’s about all of my reading experience on the genre. I’m definitely interested in reading the Carnacki stories from William Hope Hodgson, though. That’s been on my to-read list for ages now. Wonder why I haven’t read it yet.

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This might seem like a weird question, but does Occult Detective and similar work often cross-over with Deiselpunk stories?

Other than X Files, I have a difficult time imagining them being seperate.

William Hodgson is interesting because it also seemed like he did some middle grade.

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