Slain in the Spiritby Melanie Tem
Leila Blackwell is a normal person, trying to live a normal life. In her mind, being a nearly blind, atheistic lesbian should have no effect on her ability to do so.
Unfortunately, an old high school acquaintance and religious zealot named Russell Gavon sees her keratitis as punishment for all of her life sins, and takes it upon himself to "rescue" her from her affliction through religious intervention. He kidnaps her, and thus begins the most harrowing time of Leila's life.
One of the strengths of Slain in the Spirit lies in the veracity of the characters. We all know Leila and Russell through our interactions with people like them in everyday life, and that's where the horror creeps in.
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Melanie Tem (1949-2015) was an American horror and dark fantasy author.
Melanie Kubachko grew up in Saegertown, Pennsylvania. She attended Allegheny College as an undergrad, and earned her master’s in social work at the University of Denver in Colorado.
She married Steve Rasnic and the couple took the joint surname Tem. She developed breast cancer in 1997. In 2013, it recurred, and metastasized to her bones, bone marrow, and organs. She died at age 65 on February 9, 2015. She is survived by her husband, Steve Rasnic Tem, four children and six grandchildren.