Judith D Collins
The Senator's Wife
By: Liv Constantine
Narrator: Kirsten Potter
Random House Audio
Publisher: Random House | Bantam
Publication Date: 05/23/2023
My Rating: 5 Stars + (ARC)
FROM THE BESTSELLING AUTHOR OF THE LAST MRS. PARRISH
A seductive novel of psychological suspense. Riveting, fast-paced, and full of unbelievable twists, The Senator's Wife upends the private homes of those who walk the halls of power.
Because when you have it all,
you have everything to lose.
A D.C. philanthropist suspects that her seemingly perfect employee is secretly plotting to steal her husband, her reputation—even her life—in this seductive novel of psychological suspense from the internationally bestselling author of The Last Mrs. Parrish.
In this town, anyone is replaceable. . . .
After a tragic chain of events led to the deaths of their spouses two years ago, D.C. philanthropist Sloane Chase and Senator Whit Montgomery are finally starting to move on. The horrifying ordeal drew them together, and now they're ready to settle down again—with each other.
As Sloane returns to the world of White House dinners and political small talk, this time with her new husband, she's also preparing for an upcoming hip replacement—the latest reminder of the lupus diagnosis she's managed since her twenties. With both of their hectic schedules, they decide that hiring a home health aide will give Sloane the support and independence she needs post-surgery. And they find the perfect fit in Athena Karras.
Seemingly a godsend, Athena tends to Sloane, and even helps her run her charitable foundation. But Sloane slowly begins to deteriorate—a complication, Athena explains, of Sloane's lupus. As weeks go by, Sloane becomes sicker, and her uncertainty quickly turns to paranoia as she begins to suspect the worst. Why is Athena asking her so many probing questions about her foundation—about her past? And could Sloane be imagining the sultry looks between Athena and her new husband?
Riveting, fast-paced, and full of unbelievable twists, The Senator's Wife is a psychological thriller that upends the private homes of those who walk the halls of power. Because when you have it all, you have everything to lose.
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Book Club Kit
The dynamic duo, Liv Constantine, returns following, The Stranger in the Mirror with their latest sizzling thriller, THE SENATOR'S WIFE — A D.C. philanthropist suspects her employee is secretly plotting to steal her husband, reputation, and life.
GASLIGHTING at its finest! Nothing is as it appears. I loved this book!
Set in the heart of Washington, DC. Senator Whit Montgomery and Sloane Chase are married and live in Georgetown, a twenty-four-minute drive to The Russell Senate Office Building, which was only 4 miles away.
Told from alternating POVs:
~Sloane Chase: (loved) Comes from money. Wealthy. D.C. philanthropist, married to Whit. Needs a hip replacement and has Lupus. Formerly married to Robert. He was shot and killed.
~Whit Montgomery: Senator: Married to Sloane. Formerly married to Peg. Shot (maybe suicide or not).
~Athena Karras: A beautiful, mysterious home health aid hired to assist Sloane with her care after surgery and her charitable foundation. Clint is her mysterious handler.
~Rosemary Chase: (loved her) Age 82, but sharp as a tack—Sloane's former mother-in-law and not happy Sloane remarried Whit and living in the house she shared with her former son. She does not trust Whit. She is having him investigated. Her daughter is Camille.
Also, another player:
~Madelyn Sawyer is a troublemaker and cannot be trusted. A Femme fatale! Whit was involved with her in the past (still may be). Madelyn is married to Fred, and they are supporters of his campaign.
There was a shooting, and Peg and Robert were involved (their ex-spouses). Sloane and Whit's spouses died. (back story here and very mysterious). Two years later, they are married. Sloane is looking forward to an evening at the White House. She has a loving grown daughter, Emmy, which lives in California.
Sloane has a persistent auto-immune disease, Lupus, diagnosed in her early twenties and has taken steroids and other toxic medications. She had always refused to succumb to her condition's severe ups and downs. Sometimes she would remain in remission for years and then a flare-up.
The steroids have taken a toll on her bones (steroids cause Osteoporosis), among many other nasty side effects—which I am all too familiar with. Now she needs hip-replacement surgery.
They will hire a home health care worker through an agency and someone to drive her to her charitable foundation and help with home therapy.
Athena lands the job. Her curves are pretty appealing to Whit.
Sloane and her former husband Robert had started the Emerson-Chase charitable foundation twenty years ago to build and maintain domestic violence shelters nationwide. They hoped the surgery would not stress her and put her into a Lupus flare. But Athena has something up her sleeve. She cannot be trusted. She has a plan.
Sloane is very independent, so this is difficult for her. Now she has to rely on Athena for everything. Does she have her best interest at heart?
Why are Whit and Athena cozying up together? Eating meals together, walking in the garden, taking off in the Porche? Why is Athena snooping around in Sloane's office at the charity? What about Whit? What is he hiding?
Sloane gets sicker and sicker since Athena came. She trusts no one. She is being gaslighted and thinks she is being drugged/poisoned since experiencing hallucinations.
Someone takes away her phone, intercepts her emails, and cuts her off from everyone important to her. Someone is screwing with her meds, tea, and food. She feels she is losing her mind. Has her Lupus invaded her brain, or is something more sinister? She is pretty much locked in her room.
In the meantime, Rebecca (former mother-in-law) is investigating Whit (she does not trust him) and is attacked and in a coma. Someone else turns up dead that was involved in her investigation. Will Emmy get there in time to save her mother before someone murders Sloane?
Why do Whit's charm and magnetism deceive everyone?
With tons of twists, thrills by the minute, and jaw-dropping surprises, the authors are masters of MISDIRECTION, making this an addictive must-read. Trust no one!
Fast-paced THE SENATOR'S WIFE is mixed with D.C. politics, scandal, corruption, secrets, lies, deception, jealousy, greed, gaslighting, money, power, and manipulation for an addictive psychological/ domestic suspense thriller that will have you glued to the pages to see how this will turn out. And what a satisfying conclusion!
If you enjoyed THE SENATOR'S WIFE, I recommend Joy Fielding's The Housekeeper (5 stars and gaslighting).
I loved THE SENATOR'S WIFE and one of their best! I also love the reference to Cafe Milano in Georgetown (the place to go). I worked for a publisher headquartered in Washington, DC area for many years and spent much time there. I was also involved with the Government Accountability Project.
I agree with the book; no healthy person can understand what living with a chronic illness is like. I feel for anyone with Lupus. I especially loved this part, as I can relate in many ways, also with several auto-immune diseases. (see below)
Get this gem on your TBR list for the summer!
Thanks to #RandomHouse for a gifted e-ARC via #NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I also purchased the audio narrated by Kirsten Potter (fav) and look forward to listening!
Blog review posted @
@JudithDCollins | #JDCMustReadBooks
Pub Date: May 23, 2023
My Rating: 5 🌺 STARS
May 2023 Must-Read Books
On a personal note:
I do not talk much about my disease because it changes daily, but my online support group wants us to spread the word about it. This book brings up some of the things I deal with daily.
I have GCA (Giant Cell Arteritis or Temporal Arteritis), similar to Lupus, with no cure. Vasculitis- An inflammation of blood vessels (arteries) in and around the scalp. It affects the arteries in your head-temporal. Giant cell arteritis causes severe headaches, scalp tenderness, fatigue, jaw pain, ear pain, and vision loss. Untreated, it can lead to blindness since so close to the optic nerve. It also can get into the brain and spinal cord (as referenced in the novel). You can have a stroke or aortic aneurysm.
Many people go blind in my online support group, as why it is scary to think of going off steroids. It affects people over 50 and primarily women. It is relatively rare, and more people tend to have it in the UK (my ancestors). On top of this, I have severe allergies and cannot take medications. I also have brain lesions (since my twenties, but now worse), demyelinating disease (like MS)-intermittent with flares, Polymyalgia Rheumatica, Fibromyalgia, and Lyme disease. I have been in lockdown since the pandemic and do not go out the door without a mask and have everything delivered. I also cannot take any vaccines. Before all this was in excellent health and never took medications.
I have been on Dexamethasone steroids (6 x stronger than Prednisone) due to being highly allergic to Prednisone and antibiotics (anaphylaxis) —I have been on a high dosage of these steroids for well over a year, and I must have my blood tested every two weeks by my Rheumatologist-back on Wednesday. My SED (like in the novel) and C-Reactive inflammation markers have been HIGH for the last eight consecutive mos, even while taking the steroids.
I must get off the steroids, as it causes as many issues as bad as the disease, but I cannot risk going blind while inflammation is still high. My markers have been over 100. I am allergic to the infusions ACTEMRA® (steroid-sparring alternatives). I have tons of nasty side effects from the steroids putting me into a drug-induced Cushings disease, hypothyroidism, 40 pounds of weight gain, severe insomnia, fat deposits, moon face, buffalo hump, etc. (and I am a vegan). Also, leg swelling, osteoporosis, cataracts, severe intestinal/stomach issues, blurred vision, and back pain. They will ruin your organs long-term with this high dosage. Each time I try to lower the steroids, my inflammation returns, and I can barely walk or move.
I feel for poor Sloane in the book! Please do not mess with our meds. Of course, you could kill someone while on steroids with all the cortisol and adrenaline pumping!
If anyone you know has severe headaches and these symptoms, see a rheumatologist ASAP, get a biopsy, get on steroids, or you could go blind. It is a horrible disease, as is Lupus.
“A well-crafted thriller . . . [that] takes us into the world of the rich, powerful, and superbly attired world of politics.”—Booklist
“This perfect storm of perfidy swirls to a shocking climax. . . . Constantine reliably delivers.”
"Liv Constantine proves to be a master of domestic malice."
—Riley Sager, New York Times Bestselling Author
“A deadly cocktail of medical mystery, family drama, and psychological suspense—I’ll admit, The Senator’s Wife really got me.”
—Chandler Baker, New York Times bestselling author of Whisper Network
“A high-stakes paranoia thriller, slippery as a politician’s handshake, that’s both sophisticated and irrepressibly fun.”
—A. J. Finn, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Woman in the Window
“The Senator’s Wife is a scandalous tale by the master of suspense. I was unable to put it down until I knew how it was going to end—because I couldn’t possibly have guessed.”
—Sandie Jones, New York Times bestselling author of The Other Woman
“A thrilling new story from Liv Constantine set in the dark heart of Washington, DC, The Senator’s Wife is full of grit, grift, and tons of insider secrets. It’s insidiously clever and utterly mesmerizing.”
—J. T. Ellison, New York Times bestselling author of It’s One of Us
“The Senator’s Wife is another twisty triumph for bestseller Liv Constantine. I devoured this thoroughly entertaining, well-crafted thriller. If you loved The Last Mrs. Parrish, you’ll want to pick up this book.”
—Sarah Pekkanen, New York Times bestselling author of Gone Tonight
“A high-stakes, propulsive thriller that leaves readers breathless as the characters’ colliding secrets and agendas unfold.”
—Nina Sadowsky, author of Privacy and The Burial Society
“A blockbuster! The Senator’s Wife is psychological suspense at its very best!”
—Jeffery Deaver, New York Times bestselling author of Hunting Time
“Liv Constantine’s The Senator’s Wife is filled with secrets and switchbacks, cleverly concealing its best surprises for the final pages.”
—Peter Swanson, New York Times bestselling author of Eight Perfect Murders
About the Author
Photo Credit: Bill Miles
Liv Constantine is the pen name of sisters Lynne Constantine and Valerie Constantine. Lynne and Valerie are national and international bestselling authors with over one million copies sold worldwide. Their books have been translated into twenty-eight languages, published in thirty-three countries, optioned for development in for both television and film, and praised by USA Today, The Sunday Times, People, and Good Morning America, among many other publications. Their debut novel, The Last Mrs. Parrish, was a Reese’s Book Club selection. WEBSITE
Lynne is a former marketing executive with a Master’s degree in Business from Johns Hopkins University. She has explored coral reefs all over the world, sunken wrecks in the South Pacific, and fallen in love with angelfish in the Caribbean. When Lynne’s not writing, you can find her curled up with her Labrador and Golden Retrievers reading a good book or walking the beach thinking up devious plans for her characters. Lynne also writes The Jack Logan series under the pen name L.C. Shaw. To learn more about her other books, visit lcshawauthor.com or connect with her on Instagram or Twitter @LCShawAuthor. Lynne serves as the Vice President, Education and Members Services of International Thriller Writers.
Valerie has always loved books and spent many nights reading by the light of her bedside lamp until 3 a.m. She lives with her husband and their brilliant Cavalier King Charles babies, Zorba and DaVinci. Early in her career she served as a White House Assistant in the President’s Scheduling and Advance Office planning presidential trips and travel and has visited over forty foreign countries. She has a degree in English Literature. When she’s not writing, you won’t find her, as she and her husband will be traveling to some faraway destination.