Tuesday, October 23, 2012 - 7:30pm






The phenomenally talented author of House of Leaves and Only Revolutions has crafted a powerfully chilling novella -- a ghost story for grownup readers.


One Halloween night, at a party held at an East Texas ranch house, a local seamstress named Chintana finds herself thrown into the role of chaperone for five rambunctious orphans. Not surprisingly, the children’s energies prove barely containable, even with promises of cake and a storyteller.
The storyteller, however, is not what anyone expects.
Looming and cloaked in dark, he entertains the orphans with a tale twisted out of vengeance and violence. He does not come empty-handed, either. At their feet he sets a long, narrow box sealed with five latches.
“I am a bad man with a very black heart,” he warns them. “And it was only that badness and blackness which forced me to seek out what I have carried now for many years and brought this night for you.”
An unsettling thing to say to anyone, especially to children. But as Chintana soon discovers, this is just the beginning. Her concerns only mount as the storyteller offers more and more menacing details about what consequences lie hidden within that long, narrow box.
To make matters worse, the orphans, one by one, lean forward and lift the latches…



Tonight, Mark Danielewski brings his multimedia Fifty Year Sword show to the Swedish American Hall, with Chris O’Riley (master pianist and host of NPR’s From the Top)


Mark Z. Danielewski was born in New York City and lives in Los Angeles. He is the author of House of Leaves, Only Revolutions and The Whalestoe Letters. 


THE BOOKSMITH at the SWEDISH AMERICAN HALL (above Cafe du Nord, 2170 Market Street, San Francisco)

Tickets $15 general, $35 seat plus one copy of The Fifty Year Sword, available in the store or at Brown Paper Tickets online or 800-838-3006.





Please note: if you are interested in purchasing the very limited, wooden-boxed deluxe edition, please call us at 415-863-8688 or email





The Fifty Year Sword Cover Image
ISBN: 9780307907721
Availability: Out of Stock - Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Pantheon Books - October 16th, 2012