My Romance Novels

The Gibbons Gold Diggers Series

Can’t Stand the Heat, Book 1

May 2013
Winner of the 2014 Angie award in the Debut Author in the African American Fiction category
Nominated for 2013 “Breakout Author of the Year” by AAMBC

Over three generations, the Gibbons women of Chesterton, Virginia, have built their reputation as a family of shameless—but refined—gold diggers. They even have a strict set of rules by which they operate. But the rebellious, youngest Gibbons is about to break them all…

Lauren Gibbons is committing the ultimate family betrayal: abandoning the tradition of seducing men for money. Nothing is worth the abuse she’s endured from her sugar daddy. Now a sous chef, Lauren is hoping to break from the past for good. And when she meets hot former NFL player Crisanto Weaver, she even lets herself imagine a future. But the small-town rumor mill—and her own sisters—aren’t ready for a new Lauren. Between her conniving relatives, her vengeful ex, a mountain of debt, and a whole lot of haters, can she escape her old life, and create something new?

Gleefully demonstrating that a person cannot be defined by his or her past, Ellis bubbles to the top with the Gibbons Gold Diggers series launch. — Starred Review, Publishers Weekly

“Ellis starts her new Gibbons Gold Digger Series, about a family of women who seduce men for money, in fine form… Be ready to laugh and cry with these new reality stars of Chesterton, Va.” — 4-star review from RT Book Reviews

Can’t Stand the Heat is a deliciously sultry, sexy novel. It serves up the perfect recipe of lies, love and lots of drama, making it a must-read.” — Daaimah S. Poole, author of Another Man Will

Can’t Stand the Heat marks the debut of an immensely talented writer whose characters leap from the pages and refuse to let me go. Using humor, deliciously vivid descriptions, and relatable scenarios, author Shelly Ellis has hit a home run. Readers will undoubtedly enjoy this one.” — Cydney Rax, author of Brothers and Wives

Other reviews:

Library Journal

Romance in Color


Romance Novels in Color

Now read an excerpt: Can’t Stand the Heat – Prologue



The Player and the Game, Book 2

the player and the game

A Black Expressions bestseller, consistently ranked in the top #100 on Amazon for African-American Mysteries & Thrillers

Stephanie Gibbons has finally hit the jackpot. Her new sugar daddy, Isaac, is loaded and treating her in high style. When he proposes, Stephanie is sure she’s set for life —- until she finds her bank account empty, Isaac gone, and a strange —- but very attractive—man following her.

Sexy P.I. Keith Hendricks has been tracking Isaac all along the eastern seaboard —- where the con man has left behind a trail of heartbroken, swindled women. But when Keith confronts Stephanie, he’s not sure if she’s Isaac’s accomplice —- or his next victim. The only thing that’s certain is his overwhelming attraction to her. And when Stephanie joins him on the hunt for Isaac, neither can ignore the sparks. Soon Stephanie is wondering whether true love is worth its weight in gold…

“With a light-hearted touch, Ellis doesn’t miss a step in this second installment of her Gibbons girls’ adventures (after Can’t Stand the Heat). Ellis has put her stamp on a warm mix of silliness, romantic repartee, and steamy between-the-sheets romps that mark this winning story.” – Library Journal

“Smart, sexy dialogue and a hint of mystery will satisfy both series fans and new readers.” – Publishers Weekly

“Ellis’ first book, Can’t Stand the Heat, was very good but this is even better. From the first page to the last she keeps your interest by weaving a story that mixes love and deception.” 4.5 star review, RT Book Reviews

Now read an excerpt: The Player and the Game preview



Another Woman’s Man, Book 3


46th annual NAACP Image Award Literary Fiction Nominee

Dawn Gibbons is shocked when her long-lost father reappears in her life. Seriously ill, his dying wish is to reconnect with her. But for Dawn, it’s complicated—her wealthy father comes complete with jealous relatives—and a handsome young lawyer Dawn finds dangerously sexy. Dangerous because he’s engaged—to her newfound half-sister. One thing a Gibbons woman doesn’t do is steal her sister’s man. Yet for the first time, Dawn may care about love more than money…

Xavier Hughes isn’t easily thrown, but the electricity between him and Dawn leave him unsettled. And when his suspicious fiancé insists he investigate Dawn’s background, it only pushes him closer to the one woman he should resist. Soon, holding back isn’t an option, and both Xavier and Dawn will have to face the consequences of breaking the family rules…

“The dialogue is engaging and fits each character like a designer suit. Ellis’ characters range from preposterous to straitlaced, from gold diggers to philanthropists and from honorable to scumbags. When you reach the climax, all you can say is, ‘Oh, my goodness!’ Another Woman’s Man is a fast-paced and very gratifying story.” — 4 stars, RT Book Reviews

“Realistic voices and interesting sidebars mark this story as a solid addition to all romance collections.” – Library Journal

Now read an excerpt of Another Woman’s Man





The Best She Ever Had, Book 4

January 2015

Cynthia Gibbons is known as the diehard gold digger in the family, but she wasn’t always this way. What her sisters and most of the town of Chesterton, Virginia, don’t know is that Cynthia had fallen in love once but teenage heartbreak made her the ruthless seductress she is today. That old heartbreak and big secrets come back to haunt her when the best man she ever had — in the bedroom and out — decides to move back to Chesterton.

As far as Korey Walker is concerned, he was the one who had been wronged 20 years ago — not Cynthia. But he’s willing to be the bigger man and put all that aside when he finds out that his son and Cynthia’s daughter have fallen in love. Unfortunately, Cynthia isn’t quite as willing to forgive and forget even if her attraction to Korey is still burning hot. When the teens rush to Las Vegas to elope, Cynthia and Korey reluctantly join forces and fly to Sin City to stop them from tying the knot. While in Vegas searching for their kids, Cynthia and Korey spar, hash out old misunderstandings, and remember what brought them together — and what tore them apart. After all these years is Cynthia finally ready to put love before money, and do away with the family rules?



Now read an excerpt of The Best She Ever Had


April 2011

The Right Maneuver

Available in paperback and ebook format.

Philly-native Keisha Reynolds is a smart, spunky, sexy campaign manager who is not easily intimidated by a challenge. But even Keisha knows when she’s in over head after she agrees to help head the campaign of her old college professor Dr. Sydney Parker — a man whom she deeply respects but who is a long-shot win for the congressional seat. The intense campaign takes its toll on the inexperienced campaign manager and after a while, Keisha hopes just to make it to Election Day with her sanity and confidence intact. Unfortunately, things go from bad to worse when she crosses paths with the competition, William Blake, the deputy campaign manager of the seemingly invincible incumbent, Congressman Vincent Dupré. She despises Will but she can’t deny that she feels an overwhelming attraction toward the man, who is as good looking as he is egotistical and seemingly devious. She tries her best to deny the magnetism she feels toward him, but knows she is fighting a losing battle that could lead her to make a big mistake that will cost Parker the election. But Keisha soon discovers that it isn’t only lust she has to worry about. Politics can be an ugly game and during the election, an earth-shattering secret is revealed that will shake her to her very core.

“The world of politics makes an exhilarating and cut-throat backdrop to this romance. Loyal campaign managers for competing candidates make a unique pairing as they navigate the shark-infested waters of love and politics.” —Romance Times

“Ms. Childers has written a story that gives you some insight into the fast-paced world of DC politics.  I enjoyed it and I recommend it.” —Romance in Color



November 2011, nominated for a 2012 African American Literary award

A Love Built to Last

Available in ebook at online retailers.

Whatever Melody Cannon wants, Melody Cannon gets — or least that has been the case for the past eight years. The famous Hollywood stylist is used to giving orders, but when Melody takes an early retirement from Tinseltown and returns home to Washington, D.C., to start a new life, she encounters the irresistible force known as Clayton Reed, a local architect whom she hires to design her new abode.

Clayton can think of many words to describe Melody, his childhood nemesis who is now his new client. Unfortunately, none of those words are good. He’s a patient man, but even he can’t control his temper around her. Despite his dislike for the bossy, hot-tempered vixen, Clayton still feels drawn under her spell. As he designs her new home, he gradually breaks down the defensive walls she has built around her with a passion and love she has never known.

“… it was a really good read” — Night Owl Reviews

“A Love Built to Last was an excellent read!… She made all the characters so realistic and lovable. She does a wonderful job of intertwining the different story lines. Her writing also just flows without having lagging moments. A Love Built to Last was a story that kept you entertained from start to finish.” — Urban Reviews