Books Like The Factory
Everyone has had a job at some point that they hated but had to endure for the money. Often, these jobs involve sitting in a claustrophobic cubicle doing mind-numbing work while having to deal with incompetent bosses and backstabbing co-workers. The fact that so many people can relate to these types of work environments is the reason why shows like The Office became so popular. The literary world also has its fair share of books set in offices, such as The Factory by Hiroko Oyamada, which is a modern fable about the world of work. The features a surreal look at the absurdity and meaningless of many modern workplaces. For more tales featuring drama, intrigue, humor, and even terror in the office workspace check out the following books like The Factory.
By Max Barry
Company by Max Barry is the story of a man named Stephen Jones who shortly after graduating is hired by Zephyr Holdings. This Seattle-based company looks like just another bland corporation from the outside, but Stephen discovers that things are very different from the inside. Stephen thinks that he is destined for success when he is promoted shortly after being hired but struggles to understand how exactly the company is turning a profit. His determination to uncover the truth leads him to a few shocking discoveries about the true nature of Zephyr Holdings.
By Lucy Kellway
Who Moved My Blackberry is a satire of modern corporate life by Lucy Kellway. It is told via the e-mails of the protagonist, Martin Lukes, which he sends via his Blackberry. Lukes is a marketing executive of a Fortune 500 company, who doesn’t let his lack of skills or talent stand in the way of his ambition. Lukes is also good at taking credit where it isn't due, which allows him to keep going even in the wake of disasters caused by his own poor judgment. In short, he is the type of boss that many readers will be very familiar with, which makes for a very funny and very relatable novel.
By Eric Barry
Phonehead by Eric Barry follows the story of an actor named West Cooper. After frivolously blowing his money, Cooper finds himself with a mountain of debt and no real job prospects to pay it back. With nowhere else to turn he finds employment as a telemarketer where his fellow employees are sociopaths, parolees, and high school dropouts. However, the longer Cooper spends on the job, the more he finds himself getting sucked into the telemarketing sales cult.
By Ed Parker
Personal Days by Ed Parker uses the setting of an unnamed New York-based company where everything begins to unravel around the employees. The employees include former grade student Pru, Laars who suffers from work anxiety, and Jack II who is known for his unwanted backrubs. In a situation that will be very familiar to everyone who has ever had to work in an office, chaos ensues when the company begins firing people.
By Kieron J R Crowther
Confessions of an Office Worker by Kieron J R Crowther is the story of an ordinary forty-one-year-old office worker named Maxwell Orwellian. Maxwell is in no way a special person but finds himself at a crossroads after a divorce, therapy, and his daughter going somewhere abroad for a gap year. The only thing that remains the same for Maxwell is his job as an office worker and his daily routine, but then a worldwide pandemic hits, and social distancing, as well as lockdowns, become a thing.
By Larkin Shaw
Eight Work Late is an office murder mystery by Larkin Shaw that explores the underbelly of corporate life. A former detective and current specialist in office discord, Casimir Dale, is called in to investigate after an employee of THP Ltd is found dead. The man, Ian Fletcher, was found on the 28th floor with his skull cracked on the company-branded doorstop, but not everyone agrees with the Board’s assessment that it was a tragic accident. It is up to Casimir to separate the truth from office politics if he plans on solving the case and uncovering the truth.
By Rob Hart
The Warehouse by Rob Hart is centered around a giant tech company called Cloud. Not only has Cloud taken over the industry, but it also constructed massive self-enclosed campuses that hold warehouses as well as employee housing. The story follows a new Cloud employee, Paxton, who is hired as security, and Zinnia, who has been hired to work in the warehouse. However, Zinnia’s true expertise is corporate espionage and she is determined to seek out Cloud’s darkest secrets. Paxton is the perfect pawn for Zinnia to use, but both of their lives are in danger when they uncover how far Cloud will go to make the world a better place.
By Joshua Ferris
Then We Came to the End by Joshua Ferris is a novel about the end of the 1990s Internet boom from the perspective of a Chicago advertising agency. As the clients abandon the firm and assignments dry up the employees brace themselves for the layoffs. In the middle of all this chaos, the company receives an unexpected pro bono assignment with the request to make an advert that will make people with breast cancer laugh about their disease. It is a highly unusual job, but the remaining employees fight to be the one who knocks it out of the ballpark.