Welcome to the official website for author Jess Montgomery, who writes gripping historical mysteries featuring strong female leads and compelling themes just as relevant today.
Book One of the Kinship series
Set in 1920s’ Ohio against the backdrop of coal mining, prohibition and women’s rights, The Widows is about two women whose lives collide when the man they both love is murdered. Inspired by the true stories of two historical figures.
Praise for The Widows
“Deeply felt…the feisty female protagonists do their real-life foremothers proud.”
“… A simultaneous examination of women’s rights, coal mining, prohibition, and Appalachian life, make this a fantastic choice for historical fiction fans.”
—Library Journal (Starred Review)
“An engaging debut… Vivid historical details, an intriguing mystery, and strong female characters.”
“This is a powerful novel: a tale of loss, greed, and violence, and the story of two powerful women who refuse to stand down.”
—Wiley Cash, New York Times bestselling author of The Last Ballad
“The Widows is a gripping, beautifully written novel…”
—Hallie Ephron, New York Times bestselling author of You’ll Never Know, Dear
“Jess Montgomery is a masterful storyteller. This is a novel about courage and the good hearts of women, and it builds, almost unbearably, to its stunning end.”
—Lee Martin, author of the Pulitzer Prize Finalist The Bright Forever
“Rich with historical details, yet fast paced… it was the vivid voices of Lily and Marvena that completely captivated my heart and kept me reading long into the night.”
—Ann Weisgarber, author of The Personal History of Rachel Dupree
“A rich, empowering, and satisfying read.”
—Jessica Strawser, author of Not That I Could Tell
Jess writes the Kinship series set in 1920s’ Appalachian Ohio. She has won awards for her writing from the Montgomery County Arts & Cultural District (Ohio) and the Ohio Arts Council. Jess also directs a writers’ workshop, teaches creative writing, and speaks frequently at writers’ workshops and conferences. To get to know Jess a bit better, read her letter to readers or her official bio.
A few Jess facts:
- Enjoys hiking; has absolutely no sense of direction.
- Finds bats adorable; is terrified of mice.
- Loves tacos; allergic to avocados and thus guacamole.
- Is not in the least afraid of public speaking; terrified of (besides mice) rip tides, swinging bridges, and open-air heights in general.
- Favorite beverages: coffee, sweet tea, and occasionally whiskey on the rocks or an Old Fashioned
- Once flew a plane without any formal training.
- Makes pies for family and friends.
Events, Blog and…
Photo: Jess’s office
June 2018—Jess will be sending gifts to those who pre-order the book! Those who pre-order will be entered into a cool contest!
February 2018—Bound copies of The Widows take flight to other authors for possible blurbs!
December 2017—Jess was awarded an Artist Opportunity Grant, funded by the Montgomery County (Ohio) Arts & Cultural District (MCACD), for development of a website and blog to include pieces on the historical background of the novel, The Widows.
June 2017—Jess Montgomery’s first two of the Kinship historical mystery series sold to Minotaur Books, editor Catherine Richards, by literary agent Elisabeth Weed of The Book Group.