Slonim Woods 9

Slonim Woods 9

A Memoir

Daniel Barban Levin

$13.99

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Description

A stunning firsthand account of the creation of a modern cult and the costs paid by its young victims: a group of college roommates

“Chilling . . . eloquent . . . a powerful portrayal of a young man’s ability to emerge whole from an experience intended to break him.”—Publishers Weekly

In September 2010, at the beginning of the academic year at Sarah Lawrence College, a sophomore named Talia Ray asked her roommates if her father could stay with them for a while. No one objected. Her father, Larry Ray, was just released from prison, having spent three years behind bars after a conviction during a bitter custody dispute.

Larry Ray arrived at the dorm, a communal house called Slonim Woods 9, and stayed for the whole year. Over the course of innumerable counseling sessions and “family meetings,” the intense and forceful Ray convinced his daughter’s friends that he alone could help them “achieve clarity.” Eventually, Ray and the students moved into a small Manhattan apartment, beginning years of manipulation and abuse, as Ray tightened his control over his young charges through blackmail, extortion, and ritualized humiliation. After a decade of secrecy, in 2020, Larry Ray was finally indicted on charges of extortion, sex trafficking, forced labor, and money laundering.

Daniel Barban Levin was one of the original residents of Slonim Woods 9. Beginning the moment Daniel set foot on Sarah Lawrence’s idyllic campus and spanning the two years he spent in the grip of a megalomaniac, this brave, lyrical, and redemptive memoir reveals how a group of friends were led from college to a cult without the world even noticing.


Author

Daniel Barban Levin:
Daniel Barban Levin holds a bachelor’s degree from Sarah Lawrence College and an MFA in poetry from the University of California, Irvine. He is the winner of the Stanley and Evelyn Lipkin Prize for Poetry and the Lynn Garnier Memorial Award, and is the recipient of fellowships from the Frost Place, Tent: Creative Writing, the Sarah Lawrence Summer Seminar for Writers, and the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley. His writing has appeared in Provincetown Arts, Bat City Review, Sarah Lawrence Review, The Westchester Review, The Offbeat, The Fourth River, and Bennington Review. He lives in Los Angeles.

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