Friday, October 25, 2013

{Tour Stop} BROKEN SYMMETRY by Dan Rix—Author Guest Post + Giveaway

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Broken Symmetry
by Dan Rix


Eleven months after the father of sixteen-year-old Blaire Adams vanished without a trace, he's found wandering outside The Scripps Research Institute vomiting blood and speaking gibberish, his sole possession a worn leather diary filled with an unrecognizable language. He has a message for her.

As he dies in her arms, he claims he never vanished. She vanished.

In a nearby military quarantine zone, scientists are being called in from around the world to sequence a previously unknown strain of DNA. Scientists…and soldiers.

When her father’s autopsy reveals a rare chromosomal disorder—a disorder, it turns out, she inherited—Blaire begins to suspect her father’s last words weren’t induced by amnesia. Like her dad, she has an additional set of instructions in her genes—instructions for what, doctors can’t say. Only one thing is certain: it’s what killed him…and it will kill her too.

But now she’s haunted by prophetic nightmares of the Yellowjacket—a young murderer, eyes the black of charcoal, who lures his victims to suicide without ever paying them a visit. The only clue she has to his handiwork is a lingering feeling of déjà vu. That, and the nagging suspicion that all she knows is a mirage. She is certain of two things—though it may mean confiding in the wrong side of good and evil, he has the answers she needs.

And he is recruiting her.

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Age Group/Genre: Young Adult, Sci-fi, Dystopia
Purchase: Amazon

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by Dan Rix


My Favorite Quotes from Broken Symmetry

Most of the time, authors are told to “kill your darlings,” a common piece of writing advice given because if an author is too attached to a specific line, the reasoning goes, chances are it will stick out like a sore thumb. That may be true. Nevertheless, here are a few of my “darlings” from Broken Symmetry that I’m glad I haven’t killed :)

Joe Paretti might have said no, but as I had learned again and again throughout my sixteen years, no was actually code for try harder.

I think this line really sums up an admirable quality of Blaire’s character. She goes to hell and back in the story, so I wanted a character that was pretty much incapable of giving up. A lot of her bravery comes from lessons her dad taught her, from having to find her own way after his disappearance, and from her own resolve.

“Damian, I swear I dreamt about you—before we even met. It was your car and your jacket. I swear.” As I said it though, I had the distinct impression I was confiding in the wrong side of good and evil.

From the beginning, it’s not clear whether Damian and the whole business of crossing over—walking through mirrors—is morally right or not. They kill people inside reflections, then come out and break the mirror, and it’s as if it’s never happened. I loved this line about good and evil and thought it really captured that moral uncertainty.

“Every time you crossover, you go to a place that isn’t real. You will begin to question what is real . . . and you will lose yourself. Do you understand me?”

I nodded.

“This is the source,” he said, gesturing around us. “This is real. This is our home . . . this is where we belong.” He pointed to the mirror. “That’s areflection. It’s not real. It exists only when you break symmetry—and only until you destroy the mirror. Do you understand?”

Pretty much every line out of Damian’s mouth became one of my favorites. Either he’s being a punk, sexy as hell, or crazy intense. This is one of the crazy intense lines. I pictured him describing the dangers of crossing over to Blaire kind of the same way Will Smith talks about fear in the movie After Earth. Watch the preview if you haven’t seen it—it’s epic.

The glass under my thumb gave way. It was like a thin sheet of ice . . . melting under the warmth of my finger. I squealed and yanked my hand back.

This is the first description of what Blaire feels when she first “breaks symmetry” and sticks her hand into a mirror. It’s probably just as likely that you wouldn't feel anything, but I wanted to give the mirrors a texture to amp up the feeling that they were crossing over into a parallel universe. I always imagined it would feel kind of like melting through ice.

Suddenly, even though I had been staring right at her, her face came into focus—and I understood Damian’s surprise.

did know the girl.

Of course I hadn't seen her at school. Of course I didn't recognize her; I never had to before. Because until tonight, she had only existed in the fleeting, two-dimensional glimpses I caught in mirrors.

She was my reflection.

A million times I had glared into her eyes, gawked at her face, scrutinized her flaws.

Not once had I actually seen her.

Earlier in this scene, which takes place in a reflection, Blaire sees a beautiful girl at her prom whom she doesn’t recognize. Then, in a flash, she realizes the girl is her own reflection. I loved this scene because I think people—especially teens—are their own harshest critic. I think everyone’s had a moment like that, where you catch sight of someone, maybe in a photograph or a strangely angled mirror, and you don’t realize it’s you. At first you’re just curious and a little intrigued. Then, you recognize yourself and suddenly you’re way more critical. In the scene, Blaire goes through a similar experience and gets to see herself exactly as others see her. She is pleasantly surprised—like I think most people would be.

Blaire is never insecure, and I’m not a fan of stories where insecure but beautiful girls only feel beautiful because some guy validates them and says they’re beautiful. I felt it was important for Blaire to see herself through a different lens, rather than have someone else be the lens. Beauty is not in the eyes of the beholder. It comes from within. 

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Dan Rix lives in Santa Barbara, California with his fiancée, paranormal romance author Laura Thalassa. He started writing his first novel in college while procrastinating his architecture studio work.

You can find Dan Rix here:
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Huge thanks to Dan Rix for being a guest on Literary Me today! :)

Readers, continue on for the giveaway! ~


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Happy Reading!