Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Too Hard to Handle & Interview with author Julie Ann Walker

If you could have lunch with one person, dead, alive, or imaginary, who would it be and why?

My grandfather. He was a World War II veteran, an entrepreneur, a lover of the land, and a fascinating man. He passed away before I was old enough to realize just how fascinating he was. I would love to hear his life's story from his own lips. I would love to have him tell me how he met my grandmother. I would love to listen to tales from the war and growing up in rural Oklahoma during the Great Depression and the Dust Bowl. If only I had a time machine!

What is your favorite travel destination?

My husband and I are diehard travelers. The number one item on our Bucket List is to visit 100 countries before we "kick the bucket." So far we've traveled to 46 countries. And they have all been vibrant and unique and wonderful in their own way. But one of my favorite cities to visit is Prague. It's just so beautiful. It looks like a fairytale come to life.

How did you begin writing? Was there a single catalyst or a series of events? 

It was a series of dumb luck events. *snort* I moved from Michigan to Chicago and had a tough time trying to wrap my head around teaching in an urban environment. (I had previously taught advanced mathematics at rural or suburban schools, and really liked that small town teacher lifestyle.) So when my husband told me to take some time off, I jumped at the chance. And during that "time off" I sat down and wrote a story on a lark. It was a tale that had been in my head for a while. After I finished writing that story, I entered it in a writing contest where, to my great surprise, it became a finalist. From there I snagged an amazing agent who made a deal with an amazing publisher. That story I wrote, the one that had been in my head for a while, was Hell on Wheels, the first book in my Black Knights Inc. series. And the rest, as they say, is history. So I sort of stumbled into the job of romance writer. And, baby, I haven't looked back! 

You’ve written a book outside of this series. For you, do they compare to one another? Do you have a favorite or do they all stand out in their own way?

Yes, I started writing a new romantic suspense series called Deep Six, the first title is Hell or High Water. And even though the series revolves around new characters in a new locale, it is still very much reminiscent of my Black Knights Inc. series. There are explosions, bad guys, action, adventure, intrigue, danger, alpha men, kickass women, and sssssteamy sex. You know, all the good stuff! *wink*

And I could never choose a favorite. It's like asking a mother to pick between her children. But I will say that I'm always most partial to whichever story I'm currently working on. 

Do you have anything in the works at the moment? Care to give us a hint about it?

I always have something in the works! Right now, I'm putting the finishing touches on Devil and the Deep, the second title in my Deep Six series. And here's what I can tell you, when writing it, I put my foot on the gas on the first page and didn't let up until the last page. It's a crazy fast-paced and crazy fun book. I can't wait for readers to get their hands on it!

About the author:

Julie Ann Walker is the USA Today and New York Times bestselling Author of the Black Knights Inc. romantic suspense series. She is prone to spouting movie quotes and song lyrics. She'll never say no to sharing a glass of wine or going for a long walk. She prefers impromptu travel over the scheduled kind, and she takes her coffee with milk. You can find her on her bicycle along the lake shore in Chicago or blasting away at her keyboard, trying to wrangle her capricious imagination into submission. For more information, please visit www.julieannwalker.com or follow her on Facebook www.facebook.com/jawalkerauthor and/or Twitter @JAWalkerAuthor.

Title:  Too Hard To Handle
Series:  Black Knights Inc #8
Author:  Julie Ann Walker
Publication Date:  September 1/15 by Sourcebooks Casablanca
Length:  416pgs
Genre:  romantic suspense
Shelf:  review
Rating: ★★★★

Back Cover Blurb:

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Julie Ann Walker continues her red-hot Black Knights Inc. series in rough-and-tumble Peru

"The Man" is back
Dan "The Man" Currington is back in fighting form with a mission that takes him four thousand miles south of BKI headquarters, high in the Andes Mountains of Peru. He's hot on the trail of a rogue CIA agent selling classified government secrets to the highest bidder, when Penni DePaul arrives on the scene. Suddenly the stakes are higher, and keeping Penni safe becomes Dan's number one priority.

And this time she's ready
A lot has changed since former Secret Service Agent Penni DePaul last saw Dan. Now a civilian, she's excited about what the future might hold. But before she can grab onto that future with both hands, she has to tie up some loose ends-namely, Dan Currington, the man she just can't forget. And a secret that's going to change both their lives-if they can stay alive, that is.

My Review:

What a fast paced and engaging novel! Walker combines suspense with subversion and plotting to create a remarkable and unmistakable BKI novel. Backed up by chemistry and characters you really get up close and personal with this story is one to remember.

The lingo dialogue really makes these characters. It’s so easy to see and hear them. Dan’s confusion over feelings, beliefs, and events become apparent, taking his larger than life personal and making him real, human. The dichotomy between super secret, blacker than black ops and a true romantic really makes Dan stand out in this series. The way that Penni quotes various pieces of literature and movies in her inner monologue had me liking her even more. It gave me lots of insight into her personality.

Suspense and chemistry abound throughout this novel. Walker grabbed my attention and held it throughout. I could barely put this one down.

Book Links 

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  1. Guys on motorcycles usually wear jeans, boots and a leather jacket and that makes them pretty appealing right there. I love that they are so confident, don't talk much and are never looking for commitments in relationships. This kind of man makes them perfect for romance novels.

  2. They are gritty, sexy, usually dirty mouthed, studs with tight ass jeans that show off their "cash and prizes", they were leather and smell like men!

  3. I just love the rugged bad boy image! Thank you!