Jan 20, 2014

Revival Tour

Revival (The Variant Series, #1)
Author: Jena Leigh
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Possessing the uncanny ability to fry a television set from twenty paces can really wreck a girl’s social life.

If you’re looking for proof, just ask sixteen-year-old Alexandra Parker. After catching her boyfriend in the arms of the prettiest girl in school, she made the journey from social elite to social pariah in a haze of electricity and exploding electronics. But finding herself at the bottom of Bay View High’s social hierarchy was nothing compared to the shock of discovering who—and what—she really is.

After being zapped out of a burning bookstore by the mysterious Declan—a hero nearly as handsome as he is infuriating—Alex finds herself under the protection of the powerful Grayson family. It’s through them that she learns the truth: that the world she’s always known is nothing like it appears to be... and that she has far more in common with them than she might want to believe.

Now, on the run from a fire-wielding hit man and a secretive government organization, Alex must navigate a strange and treacherous new world filled with superhuman mutants known as Variants. As she begins to unravel the many secrets of her family’s past, she uncovers the real reason for her parents’ death twelve years earlier—and finds out that the threat to her family, and to everyone she cares about, is still dangerously real.

Born and raised in Tampa, Florida, Jena Leigh spent ten years in the mountains of North Carolina before returning home to the lightning capital of North America. A shameless geek, she loves bad sci-fi movies, Skittles, writing cracktastic e-mails to friends and taking shenanigan-filled road trips to faraway concerts. She has a degree in English from Appalachian State University. REVIVAL is her first novel.

Where to Stalk Jena!

Revival Soundtrack

I have two obsessions in my life: the written word and music. When I'm writing, I have music playing in the background almost constantly. Putting on a pair of headphones and cuing up a character-specific playlist always helps draw me into the world of my novel and capture the emotions of a particular scene.

While I was writing Revival I played dozens of different songs on repeat, searching for inspiration. Here are just a few of the tunes I listened to during those long nights spent hunting for words!

1. Florence + the Machine — Rabbit Heart (Raise it Up)

At the beginning of the novel, Alexandra Parker is a sweet—if somewhat quiet—high school junior that is more than happy to let others take center stage while she observes life safely from the sidelines. That all changes when she discovers who she is and what she's capable of. With the help of her new friends—Declan, in particular—Alex discovers that she's not as weak as she once assumed... And that when it comes to protecting the people she cares about, she's stronger than she ever would have imagined.

Key Lyrics

This is a gift, it comes with a price
Who is the lamb and who is the knife
Midas is king and he holds me so tight
And turns me to gold in the sunlight

I look around, but I can't find you (raise it up)
If only I could see your face (raise it up)
Instead of rushing towards the skyline (raise it up)
I wish that I could just be brave

I must become a lion hearted girl
Ready for a fight
Before I make the final sacrifice

2. Burn Halo — Threw it All Away

Recently, I was asked what I thought Declan's theme song might be. At the time, I picked "I Stand Alone" by Theophilus London, but the more I thought about my choice, the more it bugged me.

Don't get me wrong, it's a great song—and the vibe is perfect for Declan. But another song that might have worked a little better would have been Burn Halo’s "Threw it All Away.”

It's one of those brooding rock ballads filled with wailing guitars and angst-ridden lyrics. And while Declan has taken to using sarcasm and humor as a shield to keep others from getting too close, on the inside he's struggling with a sea of anger, regret, and pain that he can't quite let go of. When Alex shows up on the scene, old emotions he'd worked hard to bury are brought back to the surface. And as Alex starts to slip past his carefully crafted defenses, Declan finds himself falling for her in spite of himself.

Key Lyrics

Come close and you'll see every little imperfection
Because my scars still bear a shame that I can't hide
Come close and you'll see I'm headed in the wrong direction
Always getting lost but I'm not hard to find
What if heaven could hear me screaming?
What if heaven could hear me now?

Lord knows I've tried to change
(I’ve sacrificed)
But keep falling everyday
(I keep falling)
I was taking every chance
I was living too fast
I was throwing it all away
…And I threw it all away

Come close and you'll see it was never my intention
But I know that I have wronged so many rights
Come close and you'll see that I fight to seek redemption
All the wounds will heal but I know it will take time
I know heaven can hear me screaming
I know heaven can hear me now

3. Snow Patrol — In the End

There's one other character deserving of a song in this list, and that's Nathaniel.  In the novel, it's obvious that Nathaniel is keeping a large number of secrets from the others—secrets that involve his memories of Alex and a past he doesn't want her to know about. More about Nathaniel and Alex's history is brought to light in book two of The Variant Series, but their past proved crucial to the way I wrote Nathaniel's character in Revival. Keeping that in mind, this Snow Patrol song is perfect for Nate!

Key Lyrics
It's the price I guess
For the lies I've told
That the truth it no longer thrills me

In the end, In the end
There's nothing more to life than love is there?
In the end, In the end
It's time for us to lose our weary minds

Will you dance with me
Like we used to dance
And remember how to move together
You are the torch
And it all makes sense

I've waited here for you forever
I've waited here for you forever

4. Snow Patrol — The Lightning Strike (What If This Storm Ends?)

And since you stuck with me this long, here's the song that I'm currently listening to (on repeat) while I write book three in the Variant series! It offers up some clues about the ending of Resistance, the second book in the series, but that's all the spoilers you'll be getting from me for now…

**MUST be 13 or older to enter**
**Winners have 48 hours to respond before new winners are chosen**
*ONE winner will receive a SIGNED hardcopy of REVIVAL and RESISTANCE (Be aware you will have to wait for the second book until it is published in FEB)**
**FIVE winners will be chosen to win e-copies of REVIVAL and RESISTANCE (Be aware you will have to wait for the second book until it is published in FEB)**
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