Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Blog Tour & Giveaway : Pepper Jones series by Ali Dean!

Pepped Up (Pepper Jones #1)
by Ali Dean 
Release Date: 08/25/13
238 pages

Summary from Goodreads:
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.

Excerpts from Pepped Up (Pepper Jones #1)
I dig my feet into the mud and embrace the burning in my quads. The harder I push, the deeper the pain in my legs and my lungs. But I’m closing the gap with the two girls in front of me, and that makes it worth it.
Just before reaching the top, the girl in the yellow uniform pitches forward and hits the ground. She’s back on her feet already when I pass her, but she’s lost her momentum. It’s not easy to regain on this terrain.
I’m shoulder to shoulder with the girl in the red uniform when we hit the top of the climb. It’s a straight 100 meters to the finish. I can barely make out the finish line through my mud caked lashes, but it doesn’t matter. I’m not easing up.
I’ve got one shoe on, and I’m soaked in mud from head to toe. Literally. This is my kind of race. The discomfort from the elements is nothing compared to the throbbing in my muscles. I welcome it all as I force my legs into sprint mode.
Zoe offers me a ride home, but Ryan jumps in, saying I’m on his way. I watch him discreetly for a moment in the car. His forehead is damp with sweat from dancing, and his blue eyes look soft and sleepy from the long

day. When he glances at me, and smiles, showing off those adorable dimples, he looks so happy. And it all seems so simple with him.
He likes me. I like him.
If it wasn’t for Jace, there would be no question at all what direction things should go with Ryan and me. And what’s stopping me now?

All Pepped Up (Pepper Jones #2)
by Ali Dean 
Release Date: 07/10/14
290 pages

Summary from Goodreads:
(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.

   Excerpts from All Pepped Up (Pepper Jones #2)
 “What took us so long to be together, anyway?” I ask.
He smirks at me, and I wiggle in my seat. No one can smirk like Jace Wilder. It’s a huge turn-on.
“You weren’t ready for me, Pep.”
I tug my hand away and cross my arms. “What? I think you mean you weren’t ready for me. I didn’t have a single boyfriend until this year and you” – I wave my hand in his direction – “were with girls all the time. Then, as soon as I get my first boyfriend, you decide you’re ready for me. What’s up with that, huh?”
Jace tries to contain his laughter at my outburst but I see through it. My eyes narrow and I shove him in the chest.

“Okay, okay.” He raises his hand in defeat. “I didn’t want to mess things up with you. How many times do I have to tell you? You’re special, Pep. Too good for me, or anyone. I didn’t want to give something a try and fuck it all up and lose you.”
My head tilts to the side as I take this in. And then I smirk right back at him. “You” – I point at his chest – “big bad Jace Wilder. Were afraid of losing me” – I point to myself with a huge grin on my face – “little Pepper Jones, the girl next door?”
He grabs my finger and pulls me toward him so that I’m almost sitting on his lap. “I’m still scared,” he whispers gruffly.
Jace’s head dips lower, nuzzling my neck. His warm breath sends goose bumps along my spine as his lips skim my jaw line. “Terrified, actually.”
Jace runs a hand over his face and looks away. His body is rigid, and I want to hug him until he relaxes in my arms. Instead, I keep my hand resting on his forearm, feeling the muscles tense underneath my fingertips.

I can’t force him to trust me.

“This is one of so many reasons why I never wanted us to be more than friends.”

My heart drops to my stomach at his words. “What?” I choke out.

His green eyes dart back to my face and his features soften. “You, more than anyone, can hurt me.” He steps into me, closing the space between us.

“Try not to break my fucking heart, okay?” he says as he kisses my temple.

I smile with relief. “I’ll try not to break your fucking heart,” I promise.

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.

Author Links:

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