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The Store

3.88  ·  Rating details ·  6,492 ratings  ·  366 reviews
In a small Arizona town, a man counts his blessings: a loving wife, two teenage daughters, and a job that allows him to work at home. Then "The Store" announces plans to open a local outlet, which will surely finish off the small downtown shops. His concerns grow when "The Store's" builders ignore all the town's zoning laws during its construction. Then dead animals are fo ...more
Paperback, 431 pages
Published July 1st 1998 by Signet (first published 1996)
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Christina I don't know if it's about Walmart but it's definitely worth reading! …moreI don't know if it's about Walmart but it's definitely worth reading! (less)

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Average rating 3.88  · 
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 ·  6,492 ratings  ·  366 reviews

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Oct 08, 2014 rated it did not like it
Shelves: dnf, horror
No, no, no.

I have been meaning to read Bentley Little for well over twenty years, but his aguably best, The Store, has been so hard to find.

Recently it has been released for Kindle, so I was pretty quick to grab it.

23% in I had to stop.

As I've said in other reviews, I don't care how depraved things can get. In fact, the more depraved, the better! What I can't stand, though, are writers who defy human nature in their characters.

Even though this happens 23% in, I'll still protect this as a spoile
mark monday
Dec 11, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: horror-modern
Bentley Little established himself as the premier expert of institutional deconstruction with The Store. This is a smart and fast-paced novel, and its attack on consumer culture is so obvious yet so smoothly encapsulated within the traditional horror genre, that the genuinely sharp critique - the entire reason for this novel's existence - may pass almost unnoticed by the frequent and possibly jaded horror reader.

If the western is the most conservative of genres, then horror is surely the most re
This was a great spooky read!

What would you do if a new store opened in your town? Would you forget about the "mom and pop" shops around your area and flock to the new store?

A little backstory for you readers:

That is what happens in the small town of Juniper, Arizona as when the The Store is built it takes over the town and chokes out all the other stores leaving them like skeletons to wither away like dust in the wind. But the store is not what it seems and when things start happening within i
Alondra Miller
Sep 07, 2015 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Horror/Suspense fans
Shelves: books-i-own, horror
4 Stars

Now, that was fun.

Wal-mart on steroids; taking over a town near you.

I loved each and every character; some despicable and some just naive...and some, have a much darker side.

There is some hope, but very little. In the end our characters fight the good fight; but is it enough??

Come on in; they have everything you want or could ever need. (Think Needful Things on acid).

Dec 26, 2012 rated it really liked it
Bentley has real charm and wit when it comes to picking random, ordinary objects and professions and twisting them to the point where the reader will walk away with a certain healthy degree of some new fear for something as mundane as a store, a house or even their own mailman...that said The Store was a lot of fun, it's a fast read that tackles an interesting subject, a seemingly innocent store ( part of a chain) that takes over the town, literally! The craziness that ensures as inhabitants st ...more
Cody | CodysBookshelf
As is the norm with Bentley Little’s brand of horror, The Store — a dark satirical stab at the state of commerce circa 1998 — wrings terror out of the ordinary. A corporate giant, The Store, moves to the small town of Juniper and soon becomes the locale’s main source of employment. Fairly mundane, right? Little takes this concept and twists it up, dices it into pieces, and the end result is a long scream of a novel: a nightmare the reader will not soon forget.

I like to think it takes a lot to s
Joshua Dodd
Aug 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 02, 2010 rated it did not like it
Uggghhh! This book had so many, many chances to become an excellent book!! A lot of the scenes it set up, it didn't follow through with! I feel like it was the generic version of Needful Things in a way. This was not a page turner for me because it kept me wanting more. I kept turning pages expecting/hoping for more and it fell very flat. ...more
M.P. Johnson
Jul 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shop At Death-Mart

This book escalates brilliantly. At first, The Store is just like any other chain retail store. Scummy, yes, but evil? The evil comes out slowly, logically and a way that is totally terrifying. I was doubly shocked. There was the initial shock coming from the book. Then there was the secondary shock when I realized I was actually being shocked by a book about an evil chain store. A lot of that comes from the fact that I'm personally guilty of some of the rationalizations used b
Nov 15, 2016 rated it liked it
I really don't want to write this review! So many people love this book, and I was pulled in, but then somewhere in the middle things really slowed down, only to speed up for the final, repugnant, and dare I say mostly inexplicable last act. I have no idea how to rate this, and I'm still struggling with my feelings. So that's the best time to write a review, right?

Also, things are about to get super spoilery up in here, so if you are interested in reading The Store definitely stop right here. I'
Adam Light
Jan 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
Very entertaining and engrossing story about a chain of retail department stores, generically named The Store. When one of them opens in a small town, everything goes to hell as it gains more and more control over the town.
A friend asked me if reading this right after Little's superb The Association due to the similar theme, and I can't say it did. However, I will say that The Association was the better of the two.
Still, this book was high entertainment with a wicked black humor and plenty of s
Chris Dietzel
Nov 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Little starts with what is truly a 5-Star premise: taking the idea of a store that is similar to Wal-Mart and turning it's arrival to a small town into a horror story. A lot of the book was great and worthy of reading for multiple reasons. The only part that detracted for me was Little's combination of ghoulish and supernatural horror elements with very realistic unfavorable elements (tax breaks for the store, etc.). They worked separately but there were times when the combination of the two see ...more
Michael Hicks
My original THE STORE audiobook review and many others can be found at Audiobook Reviewer.

In the very late 1990s/early 2000s, I worked at a local big-box retail store for several years while attending college. Employees had to attend pointless, monthly bull sessions, apparently to remind us on a regular basis of how awesome this particular retail chain was and why it should be oh so meaningful to us meagerly paid employees. At one point, my department manager notified me that the higher-ups were
Jun 22, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book was just so all over the place, that I just don't know what to rate it. 2? 2,5? 3? I think I'll settle with a 2, just because it had such a disappointing ending (but I was ready to rate it a 3 or 4 at the start).

Which takes me to...

The start - actually about the first half of the book was quite alright. It was slow paced which might alienate some, but I found I enjoyed the writing style, and it had several creepy scenes that built up suspense and made me wonder what was going on with/
Adam Wilson
Dec 09, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Where to begin. Well, I think that this is Little's best work, out of the books I've read so far. This one will stay in my mind for years. The story of an evil corporation that slowly takes over a small community is flawless. The novel builds like a tsunami on the ocean in many ways. I felt absolutely swept away as I read. Its terrifying on, to use King's words "many levels of the Tower," relatable to people like me who live in a small town, unstoppable, and beautifully disgusting. It won't stop ...more
Janie Johnson
Jan 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This was a GREAT read. I was glued to this book folks! Now take any little town, like mine, population under 500, now bring in a HUGE chain store called nothing other than "The Store". This store takes out all the competing stores in this little town. You lose your daughters to this new store, your best friend, and you know you need to stop it, but how? This is what Bill Davis, his wife Ginny, and a select few were faced with. How do you fight pure evil when everyone is against you? This is a de ...more
Nov 27, 2017 rated it did not like it
Horrible book. HorriBLE not horror.

Story of a store taking over a town, getting progressively worse while the people in its midst get sucked in, mowed over, brainwashed, and destroyed. With a book like this I need a character I can believe in, or relate to, who - in the midst of horrible events, makes decisions, even if they fail that I can accept. I couldn't with this one, and I'm a huge fan of King's 'The Stand.' (Read it three times, the original, looong version.)

But this book? Nope. Read unt
Nov 19, 2008 rated it really liked it
I've already shared my opinion on Bentley Little as an author - he's an evil genius of bad dreams, and takes the "ewww-factor" to a new level with his writing. I'm not seeking out his books anymore (my stomach's not as strong as it used to be before I had my kids) but I did enjoy "The Store."

Imagine if Wal-mart was evil. Not evil like they are now... but really, actually evil. When a new branch of The Store opens up, birds drop dead from the sky in the parking lot. Customers find wares for sale
Brian Rosenberger
Feb 25, 2012 rated it it was amazing
The Store is one of my favorite Bentley Little novels. A chain store much like Walmart opens in small town America, intent on putting the Mom and Pop stores out of business, one way or another.

Systematically, The Store sinks its corporate claws into the town, from maintaining the police force, corrupting the city council, and imposing a curfew. Woe to those caught trespassing after dark.

Miss a payment on a microwave, The Store will repossess your newborn. What’s the deal with all the dead anima
Apr 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
Story - 4.7 Stars
Narration - 4.3 Stars

This story got very creepy after a while, but seemed overlong in the middle. A few of the twists were predictable, but maybe that was part of the suspense.

Highly Recommended
Lance Dale
Mar 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
Going to Walmart is pretty terrifying most of the time but it's got nothing on The Store. This was a fun, entertaining, horror book. ...more
The Face of Your Father
Mar 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
'The Store' by author Bentley Little feels as if spiders are crawling up and down your body while you have a 102 degree fever.

So, if you are into that sort of thing, like yours truly, you will love this tale.

Is it subtle with its execution? or with its social commentary? Well, I don't believe subtle is the word to use when describing Bentley Little.

This is a blunt force trauma of a novel that explores how close depravity is to consumerism and materialism. The novel goes to such deplorable length
Feb 04, 2014 rated it really liked it
The story had continuous creepy moments which I found good, it rolled the story especially since everything was developing very slowly. Even the end was nothing bombastic. But I really like the book because of the portrait of our society today and it made me think again about real values in life, because sometimes we forget them, we get so obsessed with material stuff.
Sep 10, 2020 rated it liked it
This was probably a 3.5 star but decided to round down instead of up.

Bentley Little is a strange cat. All of the books I have read by him are pretty much the same. I'm not sure why I like them so much, but I do.
Rod | rodsreads
May 29, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Here we have a book about a big store (The Store) coming to a small town.

Boring, right?

Not really!

This was my very first time reading Little, and it definitely won't be my last.

Was it a fantastic read? Nope.

Most of the time, all I need is a story that will keep me entertained.

I was looking for a fun ride, and The Store delivered.
Christopher Fulbright
I've had this sitting on my shelf for years. In my rediscovered love for Bentley Little's work after a several-year hiatus, I finally took it down and checked it out.

As with the other books of Little's that I've read and enjoyed, the characterization was excellent, and I was drawn easily into the small town in the story. I rooted for the main characters and totally bought into the idea this book is pushing -- at least the message I got out of it -- that Americans are selling their souls to corpo
Absolom J. Hagg
Oct 19, 2014 rated it liked it
Synopsis: A giant discount retail store (called The Store) moves into a small town and takes over.

Unsettling more for its depiction of corporate fascism and groupthink than its supernatural aspects (which are downplayed and undercooked). The author has a tendency to drop in information that should be a major character motivator or seems to be a major plot point and then never come back to it again. For example, an early viewpoint character is killed offscreen and not only do the other characters
Jan 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
El Almacén reseña en español: Click aquí

"The Store wants you
Ask not what The Store can do for you
but what can you do for The Store"

The Store is a creepy horror novel about a mysterious supermarket chain that is installed in the small town of Juniper, Arizona. It seems to have any product the customer may need: from groceries to more obscure things like voodoo dolls, illegal firecrackers and extremely violent video games. Bill Davis, the protagonist, feels that something is wrong and will w
Mar 13, 2011 rated it really liked it
Stephen King recommended author and book. King says: "BEST OUTRIGHT HORROR NOVELIST. Bentley Little, in a walk. Don't know Bentley Little? You're not alone. He's probably the genre's best-kept secret, but at least 10 of his novels are available in paperback; you can pick up three for the price of that flashy new hardcover you've got your eye on. The best thing about Little is that he can go from zero to surreal in 6.0 seconds. My favorites are The Store (think Wal-Mart run by SAYYY-tan) and Disp ...more
DeAnna Knippling
Dec 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
A store comes to town. A store...eats a town.

Okay, this went on and on a bit. And at first I was like eh...I'm just not buying some of this. And then I realized I wasn't reading a book about the ultimate Walmart-esque evil, but about totalitarianism.

How do cults work? How do totalitarianists work? Like this. It seems incredible...bit that's how it's done.

Not a perfect book. Sometimes the author shows through. But another one that really hit when I stepped back and went, "Wait, what?"
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Bentley Little is an American author of numerous horror novels. He was discovered by Dean Koontz.

Little was born one month after his mother attended the world premiere of Psycho. He published his first novel, The Revelation, with St. Martin's Press in 1990. After reading it, Stephen King became a vocal fan of Little's work, and Little won the Bram Stoker Award for "Best First Novel" in 1990. He mo

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