Every author who writes a book doesn’t always pull the storyline out of thin air. Most of the best-selling books are based on real-life incidents, but readers choose to ignore that fact most often. It is only when they are genuinely shocked by the contents of a book that they begin researching the inspiration behind the story. When it comes to fantasy books that are scary, readers don’t realize that they might have been inspired by real events as well. Here are fantasy books that are inspired by actual events.

The Girls

The book is based on events that happened in Emma Cline’s family. As an author, Emma takes the reader into the life of a 14-year-old girl called Evie Boyd who gets into a cult. She is introduced into the cult by Russell, a very charming man. The life of Evie is looked at from perspectives of when she was a young girl and when she is a grown woman alternatively. The experience of Evie is depicted as being influenced by cults and several rituals that do not seem like the norm in everyday life. Little does the reader know that Emma Cline’s Manson Family inspires the story.


There is much speculation about the inspiration behind the book ‘Room’ by Emma Donoghue. While as a reader, you rarely expect to believe in the fact that a person can be imprisoned all their life, the story is strangely accurate. The inspiration behind this fantasy fiction is the life of Josef Fritzl who had caged his daughter for 24 years in an underground room of his home.

Burial Rites

Burial Rites was nominated for the best fiction/fantasy novel of 2014. Written by Hannah Kent, the book tells the story about Agnes Magnusdottir who was convicted of killing her employer with an accomplice. The story is based in Iceland and is based on a farm in a remote location. The people who Agnes lives with are not very happy with her till they hear the story she has to say about her employer.  The book is based on a real event that took place and entails several fictitious pieces weaved into its storyline.


Not many people realize that the book Jaws is based on real events. The book was a massive hit and went on to be made into a movie that is still one of the greatest fearful film ever made. The terror and the fear factors that is encompassed in the story makes it one of the greatest books/movies ever made. As truth might have it, the story is inspired by a true event that happened in 1916.

Murder on The Orient Express

Agatha Christie is one of the best mystery writers of all time. She is also one of the writers who books get made into movies almost as soon as they are released. The fact remains true with The Murder on The Orient Express. While most readers believe that her books are all pure fiction and fantasy, The Murder on The Orient Express is based on a real-life kidnapping incident that inspired the author.