Tuesday, November 24, 2015

FFBC Blog Tour, Playlist, & Giveaway: The Family (Marissa Kennerson)

The Family
by Marissa Kennerson
Publisher: Full Fathom Five Digital
Release Date: October 8th 2014
Genre: Young Adult, Realistic Fiction, Cult

Just like any average seventeen year old, Twig loves her family. She has a caring mother and a controlling father. Her brothers are sisters are committed to her family’s prosperity…
All one hundred and eighty three of them.
Twig lives in the Family, a collective society located in the rainforest of Costa Rica. The Family members coexist with the values of complete openness and honesty, and a shared fear of contagious infection in the outside world.
So when Adam, their Father, prophet, and savior, announces that Twig will be his new bride, she is overjoyed and honored. But when an injury forces her to leave the grounds, Twig finds that the world outside is not necessarily as toxic as she was made to believe. When she meets Leo, an American boy with a killer smile, she begins to question everything about her life within the Family, and the cult to which she belongs.
But when it comes to your Family, you don’t always get a choice.

Twig and Leo’s Playlist

Music was such a huge part of my experience while writing THE FAMILY. I had this lovely, young, innocent, artistic and sadly -  victimized – Twig. I felt so passionately that music would be like a firecracker of inspiration for her. It would blow her mind.

Everything was blowing her mind after being raised in an oppressive, abusive cult environment. Music could whisper when she needed it, make her want to jump and dance and bounce and pounce at other times.

Music as healer. Music as poet. Music as intoxicant!

1. Teenage Dream – Katy Perry - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=98WtmW-lfeE

Hazel dares Leo to dance to this POPsicle of song. He accepts the challenge and Twig just about loses her mind. The boy’s got moves, he’s hot and oozes charm.  He’s sweet. This song was just also a total guilty pleasure while I was writing. I kind of pumped me up and brought me instantly into the soul of the book.

Imagine Twig riding in a convertible, hair blowing…”Let’s run away and never look back.”

Thank you, Ms. Perry. Something really comes through in this song.

So, I am a Jeff Tweedy anything girl. Jeff Tweedy strung out and skinny,  Jeff happy and healthy and all dad making an album with his son, Jeff and his book of poems. You get the picture. And this is Jeff singing Woodie Guthrie’s words. Yes, please.

Remember the Mountain Bed – sigh. It’s just the most romantic, out in the woods, delicious business. My friend Sarah turned me on to it in the 90’s, and I knew it was perfect to describe the mood between Leo and Twig that magical Thanksgiving night in the woods when she decides to go on the surf trip with him. Twig in her vintage YSL on loan from Gran, the moon full and bright, their young love.

3. Mellow Mood – Bob Marley Wailers

The Cohens and Leo were inspired by a family I knew as a teenager in Santa Monica, the Kaufmans. I had moved back to LA with my family after living in a very conservative, small, affluent (Laura Ashley/Pierre Deux) town in Northern California. I thought wearing Gunne Sax was cool when I got back to LA.
Sheila Kaufman and her family introduced me to a new way of experiencing life the way the Cohens do for Twig (on a smaller level for me of course). We would make fresh salsa, AMAZING music playing, swimming in their pool deep into the night and more laughter than I could ever describe.  Mellow Mood – just says Cohen. Says Kaufman. It’s what Leo and her family bring to Twig.

4. Side of the Road – Lucinda Williams

This song will rip you in two.

Ms. Williams articulates something so true in this song – it hurts. I had put the lyrics of this book but had to take them out for copywriting purposes.

“If only for a minute or two – I want to see to what it feels like to be without you…”  -LC

It’s Twig’s dilemma between the world she has always known –the world she has loved and this new world that is capturing every essence of her young being.

5. Goodbye Girl – The Shins and/or Squeeze – you choose!

When the Shins came out with this version of Goodbye Girl – it just struck this crazy chord with my 13 year old self and my 28 year old self – and the mix was heady. I came up with the Cohen’s musical car game: each family member has to bring a song and its cover to the table and everyone votes. It’s just so Cohen and so fun.

So which do you choose?

6. Appletree – Erykah Badu

Hazel is this sexy, sensual, badass, confident American teen. She’s kind of the antithesis of Twig. (Although they are both big-hearted gals!) Erykah Badu – well she’s like my super hero. This song just oozes cool. It was perfect for Hazel’s song during the Cohen Lip Sync night during the surf trip.

7. Love is Strange – Micky and Silvia

My dad and I were driving one day and he pointed out how adorable and bubbly this song is. Then there was the Dirty Dancing scene. It was just too perfect – Leo and Twig singing this song with one another. I think if the FAMILY ever does become a movie or TV show and they do this scene – I’ll just faint dead away of happiness.

8. Blackbird – The Beatles

Leo gives moments a song. A soundtrack to life. Twig gives people colors. My editor gave the FAMILY a song. There you have it.

Thanks for the listen!

Let me know what you think!


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Follow the The Family by Marissa Kennerson Blog Tour and don't miss anything! Click on the banner to see the tour schedule.

Marissa Kennerson received her B.A. in English Literature from the University of California at Berkeley. Before earning her master’s degree in psychology and art therapy, she worked for Wired and Glamour. She lives in California with her family. The Family is her first novel (Full Fathom Five Digital) and will be coming out October 2014.

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