It was supposed to be a new beginning. But when a young family moves into a small house on Ash Tree Lane, they discover something terribly wrong. Their house is bigger on the inside than it is on the outside. Much, much bigger. A blind old man, a young apprentice working in a tattoo shop, and a mad woman haunting an Ohio institute narrate this story of a family that encounters an endlessly shifting series of hallways in their home, eventually coming face to face with the awful darkness lying at its heart. But even as the vast architecture of that place is slowly laid bare, the boundaries between its shadows and the shadows in the lives of the narrators begin to lose their distinction. Suddenly the house on Ash Tree Lane becomes something else entirely -- a world stalked by terror and driven mad with grief.
"Any hope or fear that the experimental novel was an aberration of the twentieth century is dashed by the appearance of Mark Z. Danielewski's House of Leaves, the first major experimental novel of the new millennium. And it's a monster. Dazzling."
--The Washington Post Book World "An intricate, erudite, and deeply frightening book."
--The Wall Street Journal
"A great novel. A phenomenal debut. Thrillingly alive, sublimely creepy, distressingly scary, breathtakingly intelligent--it renders most other fiction meaningless. One can imagine Thomas Pynchon, J. G. Ballard, Stephen King, and David Foster Wallace bowing at Danielewski's feet, choking with astonishment, surprise, laughter, awe."
--Bret Easton Ellis
"[Its] chills spark vertigo, its erudition brings on dislocating giddiness . . . House of Leaves is dizzying in every respect."
"Stunning . . . What could have been a perfectly entertaining bit of literary
horror is instead an assault on the nature of story."
"This demonically brilliant book is impossible to ignore, put down, or persuasively conclude reading. In fact, when you purchase your copy you may reach a certain page and find me there, reduced in size like Vincent Price in The Fly, still trapped in the web of its malicious, beautiful pages."
--Jonathan Lethem, author of Motherless Brooklyn
"[A] tour de force first novel. [It] can keep you up at nights and make you never look at a closet in quite the same way again . . . Staggeringly good fun."
"A novelistic mosaic that simultaneously reads like a thriller and like a strange, dreamlike excursion into the subconscious."
--The New York Times
"If you can imagine that Peter Pan's enemy is not Captain Hook but Neverland itself, or that the whale that swallows Jonah is Moby-Dick, you'll begin to appreciate what this book is about. Anticipate it with dread, seize, and understand. A riveting reading experience."
--Gregory Maguire, author of Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West
"Grabs hold and won't let go . . . The reader races through the pages exactly as her mind races to find out what happens next."
--The Village Voice
"Like Melville's Moby-Dick, Joyce's Ulysses, and Nabokov's Pale Fire, Danielewski's House of Leaves is a grandly ambitious multi-layered work that simply knocks your socks off with its vast scope, erudition, formal inventiveness, and sheer storytelling skills." --San Diego Union-Tribune