Have you heard of Selena Montgomery? If you are an avid romance reader, the answer might be yes. But if not, chances are you’ve heard of her alter ego, Stacey Abrams. Abrams rose to national prominence in the 2018 Georgia gubernatorial election. And more recently she’s received major credit for helping to register hundreds of thousands of new voters in Georgia through founding Fair Fight Action, an organization to combat voter suppression. To add to Stacey Abram’s overall amazingness, she’s also written eight romantic suspense novels, two nonfiction books, and has a new legal thriller While Justice Sleeps coming out next May.
The romantic suspense novels are written under the nom to plume Selena Montgomery. While some, including a very misguided Stephen Colbert, have tried to poke fun at Abrams for this second career, it is something she never tries to hide or apologizes for. Which is great, because she shouldn’t have to (especially because the novels are well written and have really good character development).
If you are curious about trying a Selena Montgomery romance or buying a book to thank Stacey Abrams for all her work in this election, here are five ideas of where to start:
If you’re intrigued by a female con artist and a second chance love story, pick up Hidden Sins.
Mara Reed has been a scammer since she was eighteen. But now she’s taken it too far and is on the run from two men trying to murder her. When she flees to her small Texas hometown, she finds herself protected by her former boyfriend, Dr. Ethan Stuart. Despite breaking his heart twelve years before as a teenager, Ethan agrees to help her hide. But he wants something in return. As a forensic anthropologist (a job I didn’t even know existed!) Ethan is investigated the discovery of a hundred dead bodies dating back fifty years. The bodies are somehow connected with the church headed by Mara’s father. It’s a dangerous thing to investigate. But their rekindled connection and the plot twists in the suspense storyline will keep you turning pages, especially once you get to the second half of the book.
If you like stories set other countries, read Secrets and Lies.
Taking place in an unnamed South American Country, Sebastian Caine is in the middle of recovering (aka stealing) an ancient relic. But instead of an easy job, he finds Katelyn Lyda an ethno-botanist who’s just seen her uncle get murdered. Her life is in jeopardy and she needs his protection. He needs the ancient relic she’s in possession of. The two begin a tentative alliance to try and get out of this situation alive. But before Sebastian and Katelyn are out of danger, sparks begin to fly.
If you like hunting down rare out of print books, start looking for Power of Persuasion.
This is an early Selena Montgomery novel that’s not currently in print or available on kindle. But if you are the type of romance reader that enjoys this kind of hunt, you can add this one to your list. It continues with Montgomery’s orphan theme, but this time the heroine A.J. Grayson is a tech genius and artificial intelligence specialist. She’s tasked with helping protect king Damon from a plot against the monarchy. Damon at first finds her overly cautious as a member of his political team. But soon they realize someone close to his inner circle is plotting his demise. It might be hard to find, but this one sounds worth the effort!
If you don’t mind a cliffhanger, start with the popular Reckless.
Reckless is one of the most popular Selena Montgomery novels. It begins with Kell Jameson, a big city Atlanta lawyer who wants to be as far away as possible from her childhood as an orphan in a small Georgia town. When when Eliza, the head of the orphanage where Kell grew up, is accused of murder, she rushes to her defense. This puts her directly at odds with Sherriff Luke Calder. The two have an instant attraction to each other, which they try to ignore to work together to get to the bottom of the case. This obviously doesn’t work, but Kell still struggles with how much she can trust Luke with the secrets of her past. While of course there is some (swoonworthy!) closure in the romantic elements of this book, the suspense mystery is unanswered. And this is the first of a trilogy that hasn’t yet been finished.
If you want some seriously sinister suspense, try Never Tell.
All of the suspense in Selena Montgomery’s books are spot on. But Never Tell unfolds against the backdrop of trying to catch a serial killer, which makes it even more creepy. Erin Abbott is a criminal psychologist who wants to keep a low profile and build a quiet life. In my humble opinion, if this were really the case she might have chosen a different branch of psychology to specialize in, but I digress. When a serial killer begins murdering innocent people all over New Orleans, Erin sees a pattern. Everyone murdered so far has some small connection with her. With the (hot!) journalist Gabriel Moss, she begins to try and uncover the truth about who this horrible killer is. Of course, Gabriel also seems as intent on slowly seducing Erin as finding his next big story.