Spooky Story, Clever Design: Horrorstör by Grady Hendrix

On my weekly trip to the bookstore, my mind was focused on horror. The first week of October has been rainy, temperamental and moody – perfect for my Halloween spirit but not so perfect for my social life. Ah well.

I didn’t have to shop the stacks for long. I immediately spotted the interesting shape and size of Grady Hendrix’s horror comedy novel Horrorstör.

Book cover of Horrorstör by Grady Hendrix

The story follows a group of employees trying to escape the paranormal activity in their IKEA-knockoff store, Orsk. The designer,  Andie Reid, took inspiration from the IKEA catalogue, even matching the size of the book to the catalogue size. Inside, the chapters are sectioned off by diagrams of the furniture that shows up in the story – as you read on, you’ll notice a menacing vibe creep up.

The last thing I found unusual was that this book was $14.95 in both the United States and Canada, which is almost unheard of. Usually here in Canada, our books are $7 or $8 more than what they would be in the States. But not this one. And for such inspired design.

Now if only Hendrix’s story could live up to the design. Ah, I’m just kidding. But the design knocked my socks off and Hendrix’s story had all the tropes of a bad 1980s slasher flick. Which isn’t surprising, because one of his other novels, My Best Friend’s Exorcism, has a cover design like so:

Book cover of My Best Friend's Exorcism by Grady Hendrix

Ugh. So cool.

Which do you prefer? IKEA-catalogue or Rental VHS? These fun designs have me jumping, you guys. And also, reading. Which is kind of the most important part of book design.


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