Published by Self-Published on Sept. 17, 2014
Genres: Mystery, Young Adult
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Welcome to the megachurch, where dads pledge to guard their daughters’ virginity and members of the dance team aren’t allowed to kick above the waist. This fascinating world of the all-encompassing megachurch is the stage for Livia Harper’s fast-paced thriller Slain.
Pastor’s daughter Emma is counting down the days until she can break away from the church that has ruled her entire life and start fresh in New York. But a murder at the church drags her back into the fold and threatens to upend all her plans. That is, if the killer doesn’t frame her for the murder first. I loved Harper’s world inside the megachurch, and I was sucked into the mystery as Emma tries to piece together clues to prove her innocence. The killer, it seems, wants to destroy and discredit her life, and Emma has to learn to fight not just for her freedom but for acceptance from her friends and family.
It’s got to be added that although Emma is questioning her faith, Harper never comes across as disrespectful of beliefs. I felt for Emma as she tries to figure out where she fits if she no longer believes and create an identity for herself outside of that insular world. These quiet moments weave through a thriller that blasts off the page and kept me flipping until the very end.
Slain is Harper’s debut novel, and I’m excited to see what she has in store next.