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Sunday, 28 June 2015

June SST: The Revenge Playbook by Rachael Allen, Interview + GIVEAWAY!

Hey guys! I am very happy to be participating in The Sunday Street Team, a street team organized by Nori from Readwritelove28, which spotlights different authors monthly. Today, I have the honour of interviewing Rachael Allen, author of The Revenge Playbook and there's also a giveaway attached to this interview so enjoy!

Cover of The Revenge Playbook

Title:The Revenge Playbook
Author:Rachael Allen
Publication Date:June 16th 2015
Publisher: HarperTeen


In this poignant and hilarious novel, Rachael Allen brilliantly explores the nuances of high school hierarchies, the traumas sustained on the path to finding true love, and the joy of discovering a friend where you least expect.

Don’t get mad, get even!

In the small town of Ranburne, high school football rules and the players are treated like kings. How they treat the girls they go to school with? That’s a completely different story. Liv, Peyton, Melanie Jane, and Ana each have their own reason for wanting to teach the team a lesson—but it’s only when circumstances bring them together that they come up with the plan to steal the one thing the boys hold sacred. All they have to do is beat them at their own game.

Brimming with sharp observations and pitch-perfect teen voices, fans of Jenny Han and Sarah Mlynowski are sure to fall head-over-heels for this sharp tale—by the author of 17 First Kisses—about the unexpected roads that can lead you to finding yourself.

Interview with Rachael...

1) What inspired you to write a novel with the central focus being the intricate, anxiety-inspiring and sometimes, comical hierarchy of high school?

This story is a bunch of ideas meshed together. The scavenger hunts my friends and I used to do in college. Articles I had been reading that made me want to write a book where girls are taking on boys (and the world). Football movies and shows like Varsity Blues and Friday Night Ladies. Girls power movies like John Tucker Must Die, Pitch Perfect, and Thelma and Louise. It’s not like I set out to be like any one thing, but I think each small piece has it’s influence.

2) Nothing good ever comes from revenge that's blinded by teenage heartbreak so I'm sensing some bumps in the road for our four leading ladies. Are there any particular lessons/messages that you wanted to impart on your YA readers from reading this novel?

I hate to tell people what to think about any of my books, but I would love it if my book inspired girls (and boys too) to speak up, to make a difference in their community, and to support each other.

3) Of Liv, Peyton, Melanie Jane and Ana, who is most similar to you personality-wise?

Peyton is the most similar to me in personality of any character in any book I’ve ever written (but I gave her different interests and life experiences). I’m actually really relieved about this because people would always wonder or assume I was like Claire from 17 First Kisses, and now I can say, “No, see, I’m like this one!”

4) What was the most fun part about writing this novel? Any interesting memories?

This book was so much fun to write because of all the shenanigans and girl power and sneakery! One memory was of being at a writing retreat with my critique group, and reading part of the scene where Melanie Jane gets dumped, and getting to laugh about how feisty she is with all my best writer friends. Another funny memory the glittery David Bowie goblin king scene. I felt so silly when I sent the manuscript to my editor and agent, that I added a “P.S. - Just so you're warned, David Bowie as the goblin king makes an appearance. I swear I am not on mind-altering drugs.”

5) Hypothetically, if there's a zombie invasion and you're allowed to choose two characters from The Revenge Playbook to be on your apocalypse survival team, who would they be and why?

Oh, man, it hurts to leave any of them behind. I’d probably choose Peyton, because she was the only one who wasn’t scared to climb the ladder in the barn (I feel as though climbing ladders is an important zombie survival skill). And I’d definitely choose Ana, because she’s a fighter and because she probably has all kinds of knowledge about swords and stuff from being a huge Game of Thrones fan. Plus, she has the keys to Jake’s, and the first order of business would be to barricade ourselves into the shop and eat all the ice cream before it melts. Obviously.

6) Following up on that last question, you find out that the only way to appease the zombies is to feed them the world's entire collection of books! You're only allowed to keep one. What book would you choose and why?

Only one?! You’re killing me!! I would cheat and keep a compendium of the Harry Potter series. I could read that series over and over and over again forever.

7) How did you choose the names for your characters? Were they random or was there some deeper meaning?

I get most of my name ideas from this site:
I scroll through the names and pick ones feel right for my characters. For Melanie Jane, I gave her a double name because I wanted her to sound super Southern. And for Ana, I chose names that are relatively common in Brazil because that’s where she’s from. Her full name is Juliana Fernanda Oliveira Cardoso, with two given names and two family names.

8) What is your favourite genre to read?

YA Contemporary. Hands down. Though I also read other genres within YA. I rarely ever read books for grown ups ☺

9) What was the most difficult part about writing this novel?

I wrote a post about that here:

10) And finally, who is your all-time favourite author and does their work influence the novels that you write today?

Stephanie Perkins. I strive to make the girls in my books the kind of girls you’re dying to be BFFs with (because that’s the way I feel about Anna, Lola, and Isla), and to make the boys just as swooney as hers.

You can purchase The Revenge Playbook on Amazon.

Rachael Allen lives in Atlanta, GA with her husband, two children, and two sled dogs. In addition to being a YA writer, she's also a mad scientist, a rabid Falcons fan, an expert dare list maker, and a hugger. Rachael is the author of 17 FIRST KISSES.


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