The newest addition to the Orsk family of Ohio stores has been experiencing some… weirdness. Furniture is shifted around and defaced overnight when the store is supposed to be empty. The bathroom graffiti has gotten truly out of control. And now corporate is arriving to investigate.
The manager is at his wit’s end when he asks two fellow employees to stay behind for an overnight in hopes they can find the person responsible for all the damage. Not long after their extended shift begins, however, the three find that another set of employees has stayed behind as well. These two are conducting a supernatural investigation in hopes of finding ghosts on the premises. Turns out the store’s location has something of a shady past, one that’s convinced some Orsk employees that the problems are otherworldly in origin. As the night progresses, each one of them will find that this retail job really could kill them.
Oh, this was the most fun ever. Horrorstör is not only set in an Ikea-like wonderland, the book is designed to resemble the catalog.
If you think the gimmick and fancy design might detract from the story, you have absolutely nothing to fear. Hendrix’s tale is one filled with sarcastic minimum wagers facing down existential crises as well as supernatural spooks. It’s a win-win in my opinion; a clever premise, a crafty plot, and a wonderfully constructed package poking fun at everyone’s favorite flat-pack furniture store.
10/14 Becky LeJeune
HORRORSTÖR by Grady Hendrix. Quirk Books (September 23, 2014). ISBN 978-1594745263. 240p.