Book Review: Julie Ann Walker’s Rev It Up

Posted October 10, 2015 by Kathy Davie in Book Reviews

I received this book for free from the library in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review: Julie Ann Walker’s Rev It Up

Rev It Up


Julie Ann Walker

romantic suspense that was published by Sourcebooks Casablanca on October 2, 2012 and has 321 pages.

Explore it on Goodreads or Amazon.

Other books by this author which I have reviewed include Hell on Wheels

Third in the Black Knights Inc. #3 romantic suspense series and revolving around an independent mercenary group who love their motorcycles and are based in Chicago. The couple focus is on Shell, Frank’s sister, and Jake “the Snake” Sommers.

My Take

It’s fun, easy, and will keep you turning those pages, although I would class it as a B-grade romance, your standard romantic suspense without any great shakes to it.

The story is very focused on the assassins lurking around the Black Knights’ compound and how Snake is going to win Shell back. Plenty of tropes abound, which Walker didn’t twist, but at least most of the tropes weren’t stupidly used even if they were obvious.

The really stupid trope was Shell’s defiance in going out with Dr. Drummond. How lame is that when she knows the bad guys are out there and she and Franklin could be in danger? Sure, Frank tells her it’s unlikely, but doesn’t she ever read any books? That’s like a red flag for the bad guys to choose you.

“He loved that sound. The sound of fear. It was a thing of joy to hear, and he supposed it affected him much the same way a church choir affected others.”

It’s a lot of surface without going into much depth. Walker plays on your emotions with what Shell has struggled to survive and what a jerk Jake was. But that’s about as deep as it gets.

The PI we never meet sounds quite interesting and enterprising. I liked the sound of Preacher as well. He was quite honorable and upstanding. It was a tremendous contrast with Johnny’s character. He comes off sounding more like a middle-grade character in a bad-guy comic book.

Too bad Walker didn’t play anything up in this other than Shell and Jake — Rock and Vanessa’s “surveillance” sounded as if it could have gone a lot further. But everyone got left by the wayside with all this surface hopping. I never did find out what Shell did for a living.

The Story

It’s matchmaking 2.0 as Boss does his best to help Snake get on his sister’s good side. It’ll take a lot of doing after Jake’s past stupidity.

The Characters

Michelle “Shell” is Frank’s baby sister. Franklin is her four-year-old son. Miss Lisa Brown is the graduate student at Northwestern University in Liberal Studies who works as Franklin’s nanny.

Jake “the Snake” Sommers was part of the Navy SEALs team that saw Steven, a.k.a., Preacher, Shelly’s husband, die in Afghanistan.

Black Knights Inc. is…
…a covert government defense contractor led by Frank Knight, a.k.a., “Boss” who had been their CO; Rock is a Cajun who can crawl inside a man’s head, and he has a secret; Vanessa Cordero is a communications specialist superstar; Wild Bill is Becky’s older brother and their resident explosives expert; Angel is the spooky ex-Mossad agent who joined them in In Rides Trouble, 2; Ethan “Ozzie” Sykes is the resident computer whiz; “Ghost” is off on his honeymoon with Ali (Hell on Wheels, 1); Christian has a thing for hot cars and hotter clothes; Steady; Zoelner; and, Frank is engaged to Becky Reichert, a hotshot motorcycle designer who provides the front for BKI. Eve Eden gets a mention.

Dr. Chris Drummond is Shell’s beard. Rudy is the hapless delivery boy. Nurse Susan is at Northwest Memorial Hospital. Carl is “the world’s greatest phlebotomist”.

Johnny Vitiglioni is a mobster out of Las Vegas. He’s got a grudge against them for killing his brother-in-law in Hell on Wheels. Mary is his self-entitled, thoughtless sister.

Hamza al-Masri is the local Taliban leader. Larry Marrow is a wanna-be assassin along with Joe Bob and Jimmy Don.

The Cover and Title

The cover has a deep royal blue sky and a Chicago skyline in the distance. It’s a nicely muscled, bare-chested Jake in dark blue jeans, casting a glance over his shoulder, the rest of him facing his Viper, the bike with a snazzy paint job.

The title is what Jake is hopin’ to do, Rev It Up.