The Fifty Year Sword: Deluxe Edition

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9780307908407: The Fifty Year Sword: Deluxe Edition

This collector's edition of Mark Z. Danielewski's The Fifty Year Sword features a deluxe slipcase with five metal latches, Nepalese binding (an exposed, specially stitched spine), and a signed frontispiece. Limited to 1,000 copies.
 
In this story set in East Texas, a local seamstress named Chintana finds herself responsible for five orphans who are not only captivated by a storyteller’s tale of vengeance but by the long black box he sets before them. As midnight approaches, the box is opened, a fateful dare is made, and the children as well as Chintana come face to face with the consequences of a malice retold and now foretold.

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About the Author:

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.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

“The Social Worker had mentioned
other
          “youngens
                              “but that night
Chintana saw no sign of any more.
    “Maybe the incresiating cold
                                             “or the
peculiar threat of a storm
                                            “or Belinda
Kite’s birthday
                      “had turned parents
from wrestling with seat belts and car
seats—
           “—from those oh so
                                            “many lists
of baby sitters tacked conveniently by a
phone.
 
    “Chintana rubbed the violet line
on her thumb as a woman with topaz
clamped on her ears burst past her
towards a small bathroom tucked
under the main stairs.
 
    “ ‘Such a hateful whore,’ the woman
sputstuttersobbed to Chintana,
                                             “to no one
in particular,
                   “diving for the comforts of
lock and running water.
 
    “Whereupon Chintana’s thumb
abruptly began to sore a little
                                         “and she
felt bleak,
                “as if a thousand
                                       “vengeances
upon vengeances were dicing her
suddenly
               “into hail.

    “Though the cause was none too
mysterous
                 “—the front door just stood
wide open.
                          “Though when it had
been flung so Chintana would never
remember.
 
    “The porch lights were extinguished
too, oddly,
               “and what’s more a shadow
now cut across the threshold,
                                            “though
without moon or stars in the Texas sky
this was an awful impossibility,
                                               “for here
reaching towards her it seemed was a
shadow cast by nothing
                                        “other
                                                   “than
the darkness itself.
 
    “Most would’ve denied the sight with
a turn,
                    “a cry,
                                             “flight,

“but maybe because Chintana too, day
out and night in, could so easily consider
doing the same,
                       “what would leave these
rooms drenched in silence,
                                       “and blood,
“she welcomed him.
 
“ ‘The orphans’
                        “was all he said.

“And Chintana showed him the way.

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Danielewski, Mark Z.
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