DRIVEN (YA) by Lisa Nowak
DRIVEN (YA) by Lisa Nowak
DRIVEN (Full Throttle series) is the third book and May 2012 new release from Lisa Nowak’s Young Adult series. DRIVEN focuses on Jess Deland, a shy 16 year girl trying to keep up appearances in a world full of betrayal and shame. Knowing your mother is a drunk and thinking your father never wanted you forces Jess to put all of her time and effort into her studies and re-building cars. But when she meets Teri-Sue Cline and Cody Everett at the local speedway, she doesn’t know how her life is about to change.
Jess knows how to keep secrets. For years her mother’s drinking has forced the young girl into being the parent. But when Teri-Sue Cline, a beautiful, young amateur racecar driver offers Jess a position with her pit-crew, she jumps at the opportunity to earn more money-and the fact that she will be working on racecars makes it the best job (ever).
Cody Everett is a fellow amateur racecar driver. But living in the shadow of the infamous racecar driver and uncle-Horatio “Race” Everett, places Cody in the unenviable position to try and prove worthy. Cody’s love and worry for his uncle is well placed, following the previous year’s harrowing accident that almost killed the man. But when he sideswipes Teri-Sue’s car on the track, he finds himself the target of a very emotional and pretty 16 year old mechanic. And now his prime motivation will be to meet and get to know-Jess Deland.
Jess is determined to keep her distance. Hoping no one will discover her family secrets, Jess has few friends and is determined to push Cody away. Teri-Sue’s family has welcomed Jess with open arms, and she is reluctant to accept any favors or gifts. And Teri-Sues younger brother Rhett tugs at Jess’s heart. An easy-going young boy of 10, Rhett’s desire is to have contact with his absentee mother. But a horrific accident has placed the Cline’s family at odds with each other, and Jess seems to be the only person who is able to break through Rhett’s façade. And Jess soon learns that appearances are not always what they seem. She is not the only person to keep secrets buried. Cody’s demons ride him hard and it will be a 16 year old girl who will help tame and wipe away the tears of a young man.
Life for Jess is about to change. As her relationship with Cody grows, the relationship with her mother pushes further apart. But finding herself alone and homeless will force Jess to test the limits of her abilities. Keeping secrets and fearing the authorities will take her from the people that she has grown to love, Jess begins to risk her health and her happiness in an effort to keep the others from discovering the truth. But it will be the love of her new family that will help discover the real-truth about her past.
DRIVEN is a fictional young adult storyline. Written in first person POV from the heroine’s perspective, the reader is taken on a journey of discovery into first love and the feeling of betrayal by a parent. The character of Jess was, at first, a little difficult to like with her misplaced anger at Cody Everett, but looking beyond the obvious, Jess is a wounded child hiding a multitude of pain and shame. Anger is an emotion she knows only too well. Driven is a sweet story about accepting who you are and asking for help when the going gets tough.
1. Running Wide Open
2. Getting Sideways
reviewed by Sandy