Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Blog Tour : Review And Giveaway : Pepper Jones series by Ali Dean

Blog Tour : Review And Giveaway : Pepper Jones series by Ali Dean

Pepped Up (Pepper Jones #1)
by Ali Dean 

Release Date: 25th August 2013
238 pages

Pepper Jones is ready for an epic cross country season. She wants to qualify for Nationals, and she’s willing to do anything it takes to make it happen. She can handle long miles and hill sprints, but boys? That’s an entirely different challenge.

Pepper’s never considered revealing her deeper feelings for her longtime friend, Jace Wilder. After all, he’s got the personal magnetism and good looks to hook just about any girl in town -- and he has. Their friendship stands apart from high school social circles, and they’re both just fine with that (or at least they pretend to be).

That is, until running star Ryan Harding moves to town.

When it comes to running, Pepper’s goals are clear. But when it comes to Jace and Ryan, it’s nowhere near as simple.

Buy Links: Amazon

All Pepped Up (Pepper Jones #2)
by Ali Dean 

Release Date: 10th July 2014
290 pages

(This is the second book in the Pepper Jones series. The following description contains spoilers for Pepped Up, which should be read first.)

Pepper Jones knew that being Jace Wilder’s girlfriend wouldn’t be simple. But she didn’t predict just how many complications would arise from his past. Jealous girls? That she expected. Family secrets? Not so much. At least Pepper can always hit the trails to clear her head… except when it comes to racing. The high expectations from her phenomenal cross country season haunt her, and she can’t seem to get psyched up for track season. Pepper’s junior year at Brockton Public is full of challenges on and off the track, but she’s not afraid to face them.

Buy Links:  Amazon

Overall Rating: 3.5 stars

Overall Review:  Considering the fact that this is the author's first book series I liked it a lot. Pepper Jones is a high school junior and cross-country runner.The two books mainly focus on her running,the championships,her relationship with her Grandma Bunny,her friendships and her complicated love life.

I really liked Pep's voice in the story.It was mature enough for YA,with the doubts and insecurities of a teenager and incredibly honest.I loved how she was honest about her feelings not only with herself but also with others.When she didn't know why she was feeling something she didn't understand she admitted it.

“Ryan, are you asking me, like, on a date?” He smiles slightly and looks down. “I’m serious. I’m asking because I don’t know how these things work. I’ve never been on a date before. Except to prom with Charlie last year. And that was more as friends.”

It was also incredibly insightful to read about Pepper's running;her schedules,championships and goals.I can relate with her on the reasons why she loves running.It was also nice to see how she tackled one goal at a time.In the first book she wants to focus on qualifying for the Nationals and she works hard for that.In the second book she is a little lost on what to do and also has to deal with everyone's expectations.

All the secondary characters were well fleshed-out and three-dimensional.Grandma Bunny was awesome.Pepper is very lucky to have such a pillar of support in her life.All teenagers need an adult like this.Pepper's relationship with her friends Charlie,Zoe,Jenna,etc was beautifully described.There is also Jace Wilder-Pepper's long time friend and practically a member of the family.

The writing style and the story remind me of Miranda Kenneally's books.In Kenneally's books, it is usually the protagonist who has a lot of issues and personal problems.But here in this series it is actually the protagonist's love interest. :-P

Now,coming to few of the problems I had with the books.One of them would be Pepper's relationship with Jace. Jace is highly dependent on Pepper and I hate how it adds a lot of pressure on her. I also dislike the fact that she lets it affect her running.And it makes me feel like Pepper is always giving and Jace is taking.I don't get why Pep has to adjust for him.I also don't believe in someone changing just for love.But its a YA series so I am cutting it some slack.I wish we would get to know the reasons why Jace pushed away Pepper for a while and why he felt the need to do and deal drugs.There is also a little bit of the stereotypical high school cliques,with the queen bees and the jocks.

There is a lot of drama that goes around.The second book focuses more on the romance-angst.That was a little disappointing.But on the upside we get to know more about Jace.The first book revealed very little about him.In the second book we get to see him attempt to reconnect with his mother, who abandoned him when he was young.I loved how he was able to relate with her problems and how he forgave her.He is also much more sweeter to Pepper.Though the possessiveness and jealousy is there(Yeah. I didn't like that),the second book is much more steamier.The character development that Pepper undergoes in the books is nice to watch.

I'd recommend this series to all fans of Contemporary YA with a little angst.Can't wait to see where the author is going to take Pepper and Jace in the forthcoming books.

The third book in the series-
Pepped up & Ready
Will be out on 28th May 2015!!

Summary:(This is the third book in the Pepper Jones series. The following description contains spoilers for Pepped Up and All Pepped Up. It is highly recommended that you read the books in order.)
Pepper is finally a senior, and she’s determined to defend her national cross-country title. Although Jace is busy with the demands of college football, he’s still at Pepper’s side, supporting her goals. But is she taking her renewed enthusiasm for training too far?
Are Jace and Pepper strong enough to withstand the pressure from those who want something from them? It won’t be easy fighting for her title and her boyfriend, but nothing easy is worth winning… or keeping.

As Jace and Pepper focus on their athletic ambitions, they discover that Jace’s social status has followed him to college, despite his attempt to keep a low profile. With her boyfriend as an idol on campus, Pepper discovers that she might just be a target to those who find Jace threatening.

You can pre-order it here - Amazon

Also, there is a giveaway for a 10$ Amazon Giftcard(open internationally)!!Enter here:

About the Author

Ali Dean lives in Colorado with her husband, twin babies, and golden retriever. In addition to reading and writing, she loves the outdoors- everything from marathon training and biking to snowboarding and skiing.

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