Monday, September 1, 2014

ARC Review: Horrorstör by Grady Hendrix

240 pages
Expected publication: September 23rd, 2014 
Published by: Quirk Books 
Source: Publisher
Rating: 4/5
Something strange is happening at the Orsk furniture superstore in Columbus, Ohio. Every morning, employees arrive to find broken Kjerring wardrobes, shattered Brooka glassware, and vandalized Liripip sofa beds clearly, someone or something is up to no good. 
To unravel the mystery, five young employees volunteer for a long dusk-till-dawn shift—and they encounter horrors that defy imagination. Along the way, author Grady Hendrix infuses sly social commentary on the nature of work in the new twenty-firstcentury economy.
A traditional haunted house story in a contemporary setting (and full of current fears), Horrorstör comes conveniently packaged in the form of a retail catalog, complete with illustrations of ready-to-assemble furniture and other, more sinister accessories. We promise you’ve never seen anything quite like it!
Horrorstör is one of those book that draws you in by just looking at it. While the concept is great, the execution is even better. The cover design alone is pretty amazing. And the inside? Well, let me show you:

It also includes a delivery form, coupons, and an awesome author's picture. The list is endless. 

Now that I got the physical part out of the way, let me tell you about the content. The book takes place in an Ikea-esque store called Orsk, where things are slightly out of the ordinary. When a mystery needs solving, leave it up to the employees to stay after hours and uncover the sinister plan taking place in our favorite superstore. As you can tell by the concept, the story is really unique and quirky.  Since the store is heavily based on Ikea, it didn't take much for my imagination to run wild. I didn't have any issues picturing the different areas and the general outline of the store. The story had a really engaging and well-paced quality to it. As far as the mystery itself and the ending (we all hate a really weak conclusion to a horror story), I liked the explanation of how the paranormal activity developed and I was satisfied by the way it concluded. 

Even though I really enjoyed Horrorstör, I had a few issues with it. I really tried my best to follow the story at all times but it lost me somewhere in the middle. Once the really terrifying moments started to unfold, I was left extremely confused for a handful of pages.  It isn't a deal breaker but just keep that in mind while reading this one. Also, the characters were just okay. They were slightly annoying and their personalities are very genetic. I didn't find myself getting attached to anyone in particular, which made me indifferent to their fate. That's not great when their lives are in danger, is it? 

The story is fun from the very beginning. As it progresses, the plot turns creepy and very nightmare-inducing.  I usually don't read a lot of horror stories but this one rekindled my love for the genre. I can't wait to read more titles by this author and pick up a lot more scary reads!  

Note: All images were taken from a finished copy of the novel. 
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