Alternating between the real world and the netherworld of Xibalba, a hellish realm where demons torture unfortunate souls, Teri Jacobs's debut novel, The Void, covers the gamut of gruesome ways to die. And there are many, which this book describes with blood-curdling clarity. There's something special about photographer Leslie Starr, but only the demons of Xibalba and Coatl, the Dark Man who plagues her every step, know what that something is. Determined to bring Leslie's soul to Xibalba, Coatl draws her back to her ghostly hometown by killing those closest to her. Jacobs paints Xibalba with relish, but at times she waxes lyrical on the horrors that are doled out there (""They grappled her with razor claws and stripped off ribbons of her flesh.... The demons wrapped the fleshy bows around their tongues, and her blood dripped from their cavernous mouths like spit"").