Horrorstor by Grady Hendrix

Horrorstor - Grady Hendrix

This book, much like the store its parodying, is a beautifully designed object at a great price. The follow-through on the design from the covers, the catalog end-papers, the store map, and of course the interior copy and art sending up IKEA's product descriptions are brilliant.


The novel, however, has some limitations that by the end of the book had me a little impatient. The book follows Amy as she attempts to get by at her low-level retail job at Orsk, a vulgar IKEA imitator. The store she is working at is a new branch, but it has been troubled by vandalism and harder-to-define phenomena that has led to corporate putting the branch on notice. Her overzealous supervisor enlists her and another employee to stake out the store overnight and hopefully catch the perpetrators before the following day's inspection. Their vigil is interrupted first by two other employees crashing to film their ghost-hunters show for cable and then by some seriously weird, crazy, and horrifying events.


The book is marketed as a haunted house story in a modern setting, which it is after a fashion. The horror elements were gruesome, of course, but there wasn't enough development for any atmosphere to take hold. Part of that is because the characters weren't built up to a level where I actually cared what happened to them. The dial gets turned to eleven too fast.


In short: its nice to look, but don't expect anything revolutionary.