New from Bethany-Kris: The Life

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Sequel to The Arrangement The Russian Guns, Book Two
Release Date: August 4th, 2014

 

 

The mafia life is a dangerous one revolving around honor, duty, and greed—a troublesome thing like love isn’t meant to play a part, but no one follows the rules.

Surrounded by men waiting for the Russian mob boss to show weakness, Anton Avdonin should have known showering affection so openly on his new bride wasn’t a good idea. Of course, that didn’t stop him. When Anton’s wife begins attracting unwanted attention from an unknown source, he’s determined to find out just who is playing the risky game and put a stop to it by whatever means necessary.
From a Cosa Nostra princess to a Bratva queen, Viviana “Vine” Avdonin was made for the life. Pregnant, safe, and loved, she’s more than happy to move on from the history that haunts her to start out fresh. Then again, someone else has other plans. Old rivals from the past and bad blood from the present have mixed in the worst way, threatening to take away the things Viviana loves the very most. No matter what, she can’t let that happen.
Both Viviana and Anton know there’s only one way this can all end and it’s up to them to do it. But, who is behind the veiled threats and personal attacks, and how far are they willing to go to get what they want? When the truth finally surfaces, the consequences will be devastating and no one could have seen it coming.
In a life where everybody plays for keeps and no one fights fair, one mistake might cost them everything.
*Please Note, The Life is not a standalone title. The first book in The Russian Guns series (The Arrangement) should be read before the second book*

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Anton rested back to the headboard to catch his breath and brought his wife closer to his side with one arm. Not bothering to make any attempt to leave his sweaty grasp, Viviana laid a soft kiss to his arm as his hand rubbed up her naked side.

After falling into bed around three in the morning once Erik and Ivan were gone, Anton was woken up by his wife not a couple of hours later. It wasn’t like her to be up so early, never mind wanting to fuck like they had, given the new pressure and pain she’d been experiencing in the mornings. Anton had no idea what came over Viviana, but he sure as hell wasn’t about to complain.

Their coupling had been rough—rougher than he liked given her stage of pregnancy. But even when he tried to slow them down, to take her softer, Viviana wouldn’t have it. Anton wasn’t one to deny his wife, especially not of that.

“Jesus Christ,” he mumbled into the palm of his hand. Even though his body was still humming from her high, his mind was downright exhausted. Three hours of sleep wasn’t new to Anton, but he could use a bit more. “Thanks for the wake-up call, baby.”

Viviana giggled, but even the sound felt off. “Yeah, I guess.”

“Hey,” he said into her hair. The grip he had on her tightened momentarily. “What’s wrong?”

“Hmm?” Viviana turned just enough to lean up and press her silken mouth to the underside of his jaw. “Nothing, just thinking about Sergei.”

“Don’t fret over that idiot. He’s not even a blip on my radar. We’ll get that dinner done and move on.”

Anton was lying through his teeth, but concerning his wife just wasn’t okay with him. What he wanted her doing was focusing on the end of her pregnancy, their son, and her health. He was the boss, so he’d handle the Bratva issues. There was no way she was going to be brought into the crossfire of Sergei’s nonsense, so he didn’t think she had any need to be properly informed.

“Actually,” he said, thinking about his conversation the night before with his spies. “I think you might just show, and then go. You haven’t been feeling terribly great lately, so it’s not a stretch to think you might not feel well that day. Just stay long enough to say hello, forgive Tatiana if you want, and then Rory will escort you home and Joe will follow. Business as usual.”

“Forgive her if I want,” she repeated dully.

“It’d be better if you did, or at least say you do, but it’s not expected. You did ask for her, though, so you have to be respectful about whatever you choose to do.”

Viviana snorted. “When am I ever not? Can I claw her eyes out after?”

“No,” Anton said, laughing. That’d surely be a sight. He bet Viviana would give Tatiana one hell of a run for her money. “Not while you’re pregnant with my child, anyhow.”

“Yeah, but making her swallow a few teeth would sure make me feel a heck of a lot better.”

“My God. You know there’s nothing there, right? Her and me, I mean. That’s not … It’s just not there, baby. You don’t have to be jealous.”

“I’m not jealous, Anton.” Strangely, he believed her. Viviana shrugged under the weight of his arm resting around her shoulders. “Why should I be … of Tatiana? I have exactly what she doesn’t. Everything she thought should have been hers is mine. I have your life, your son, and your love. Even if she was nothing more than your whore, which she isn’t, she still wouldn’t have any of those things. So no, I’m not jealous of that girl. On the other hand, I do wonder if she is envious of me.”

“I have no doubt of that.”

Viviana sighed. “Exactly. Tatiana has defied her father, you, and God knows how many others just to hurt me once. That was before we were married, before Demyan, and she only managed to sling words. This time might be different. At this dinner, she’s going to see me pregnant, happy, and protected, all because of you. Again, all that she doesn’t have and everything she wanted. So it brings me back to safety, I guess. You made it clear you don’t want her in any way so would she hurt me, or worse your baby, because of her resentment? Is she that crazy over you?”

Anton stayed silent, letting his wife’s words sink in as he considered them. It wasn’t that what she said didn’t make sense, because it did, but he wondered why Viviana had asked for Tatiana’s presence at all.

“You asked for her to be there, Vine. If you were worried about all of this, why ask at all?”

“I also asked for no guns.”

“And I’ll make sure that’s adhered to as best I can,” Anton said, still feeling confused. “You won’t take a step into any establishment unless it is weapon free.”

Viviana felt tense in his arms. “You don’t need a gun to kill someone.”

“She won’t have any chance to be alone with you.”

“I know.”

“Then what?” Anton asked.

“I want this done,” she said so low he strained to hear. “Put an end to it, however you have to. I don’t want to worry about her or her goddamned family after it’s over. I don’t want to think if she can’t hurt me, she’ll go to the next best thing.”

“You’re worried she’ll try to hurt Demyan.”

“Or you. To me, that’s just as bad.”

“You know that’d never—”

“No, I don’t,” Viviana interrupted coolly. “But if I didn’t have them to worry about, it’d be one less thing for me to consider.”

It was only then that her hidden meanings were starting to dawn on Anton. Viviana never asked him for anything in regards to business. She didn’t like to have her hands in his pots, so to speak. This was entirely different, especially if she was asking what he thought she was asking.

“Come on, Vine …”

“I want it done,” she repeated thickly. “Please.”

“On your head, though? You want that on your mind, bloodying up your hands, too?”

“Please?”

“Stop it,” Anton said, practically spitting the words. “Fuck, just don’t say that shit. I’ll handle it.”

“Before or after one of us is dead?”

 

THEARRANGEMENT

The Arrangement by Bethany-Kris
The Russian Guns, book 1
Buy links

 

Bethany-Kris is giving away a $20 Amazon Gift Card to one lucky winner. Just complete the rafflecopter entries for your chance to win. The winner will be announces at the end of the book tour. Good luck.

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Cover Reveal for The Life by Bethany-Kris

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The Life by Bethany-Kris
Sequel to The Arrangement The Russian Guns, Book Two
Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22092769-the-life
Release Date: August 4th, 2014

The mafia life is a dangerous one revolving around honor, duty, and greed—a troublesome thing like love isn’t meant to play a part, but no one follows the rules.

Surrounded by men waiting for the Russian mob boss to show weakness, Anton Avdonin should have known showering affection so openly on his new bride wasn’t a good idea. Of course, that didn’t stop him. When Anton’s wife begins attracting unwanted attention from an unknown source, he’s determined to find out just who is playing the risky game and put a stop to it by whatever means necessary.

From a Cosa Nostra princess to a Bratva queen, Viviana “Vine” Avdonin was made for the life. Pregnant, safe, and loved, she’s more than happy to move on from the history that haunts her to start out fresh. Then again, someone else has other plans. Old rivals from the past and bad blood from the present have mixed in the worst way, threatening to take away the things Viviana loves the very most. No matter what, she can’t let that happen.

Both Viviana and Anton know there’s only one way this can all end and it’s up to them to do it. But, who is behind the veiled threats and personal attacks, and how far are they willing to go to get what they want? When the truth finally surfaces, the consequences will be devastating and no one could have seen it coming.

In a life where everybody plays for keeps and no one fights fair, one mistake might cost them everything.

*Please Note, The Life is not a standalone title. The first book in The Russian Guns series (The Arrangement) should be read before the second book*

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The previous book
The Arrangement by Bethany-Kris
The Russian Guns, book 1

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Nothing will stop the Bratva mob boss from taking back what’s his, and once he has her, he’ll do anything to keep her…

Viviana “Vine” Carducci’s and Anton Avdonin’s marriage was decided more than two decades ago. The deal between leading mafia families has more on the line than anyone knew, even if the Bratva and Cosa Nostra shouldn’t mix. When Vine’s family is murdered and she’s left with nothing more than her grief to survive the mob world alone, she believes the arrangement won’t see the light of day.

Anton can’t allow the one woman he was supposed to love get away. At the possibility of her death, he steps in to save her with guns blazing, knowing exactly what it might cost him: everything. But it’s been nearly a decade since their last meeting, and he can’t help but wonder if the woman he took back is the same girl he fell for all those years before.

Protected and loved, Vine is unable to forget their shared moments a lifetime ago, or the future she knows they’re owed. When an old flame of Anton’s shows up to rip the veil off the carefully constructed secrets he’d been hiding, she learns that nothing about her life is as it seems. But, that’s nothing compared to the bomb about to blow. Can Vine see beyond the pain and blood to take what she always wanted? And just how far will the mob prince go to keep her safe?

In a world where violence, deceit, and greed reign, your life is not your own, and sometimes, love has to be arranged.

Sensuality Level: Spicy

The Russian Guns, Book One

Buy links

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GIVEAWAY

Bethany-Kris is giving away 5 advance copies of The Life to 5 lucky winners. Just complete the rafflecopter entries for your chance to win. Winners will be announces at the end of July. Good luck.
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New from Bethany-Kris: The Arrangement


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The Arrangement by Bethany Kris

Genre: Erotic, Contemporary Romance, Romantic Suspense

When a Cosa Nostra girl and a Bratva boy meet...

BookBlurb

 

Nothing will stop the Bratva mob boss from taking back what’s his, and once he has her, he’ll do anything to keep her…

Viviana “Vine” Carducci’s and Anton Avdonin’s marriage was decided more than two decades ago. The deal between leading mafia families has more on the line than anyone knew, even if the Bratva and Cosa Nostra shouldn’t mix. When Vine’s family is murdered and she’s left with nothing more than her grief to survive the mob world alone, she believes the arrangement won’t see the light of day. 

Anton can’t allow the one woman he was supposed to love get away. At the possibility of her death, he steps in to save her with guns blazing, knowing exactly what it might cost him: everything. But it’s been nearly a decade since their last meeting, and he can’t help but wonder if the woman he took back is the same girl he fell for all those years before. 

Protected and loved, Vine is unable to forget their shared moments a lifetime ago, or the future she knows they’re owed. When an old flame of Anton’s shows up to rip the veil off the carefully constructed secrets he’d been hiding, she learns that nothing about her life is as it seems. But, that’s nothing compared to the bomb about to blow. Can Vine see beyond the pain and blood to take what she always wanted? And just how far will the mob prince go to keep her safe?

 

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“Why all the safety precautions if you’re expecting me to live openly here?” she asked. “Doesn’t that defeat the purpose?”

Anton cocked a brow. “I’m hoping your uncle will be a lot less brazen if I’m not keeping you hidden.” He still hadn’t let go of her sides, those teasing thumbs of his rolling gently against the undersides of her breasts in tender motions. “Deny that you want this, too, Vine. You’ve always wanted me. You want this life because you were meant for it, and I have waited more than long enough to get you here living it with me.”

“You’re not giving me a choice. I’ve spent the last three years thinking that this arrangement was over, and then you come in with guns blazing and a house on lockdown, Anton. That’s … It’s not fair. You signed my death warrant doing this.”

Immediately, his hands left her skin. She wanted them back, but her pride wouldn’t allow her to admit that fact. “It was already signed.”

“What?”

Placing his hands to his knees, Anton shook his head and muttered, “He was already getting ready to put out a hit on you. That guard of yours was probably going to be the one to do it to get his in with the family. I was hoping to see you back in the states before I approached you myself, but Sonny didn’t give me the chance.”

No one likes to off a woman, Vine.

She couldn’t help but remember Sam saying that. Would he have done it?

“You can’t possibly know that for sure.”

The look he gave turned her stomach with fear. “I can and I do, Vine. There are men in that organization who are less trustworthy than a snake. Even their eyes and ears can be bought. I stepped in now because I needed to, not because I thought you were ready, or that you wanted me to.”

An ache settled in her chest. How was she supposed to trust him?

“Sonny wouldn’t kill me simply because I wanted to marry you, Anton. I’m not worth a damn thing to him alive, nothing more than a nuisance he has to look after.” Frustrated by his lack of expression, her bitterness rose. “Dead I’m worth even less though, right?”

“Dead you’re worth nothing,” Anton admitted, hurting Viviana a little more. “That is exactly what your uncle wants to achieve. For secrets to remain hidden from his family and for his power to remain intact.”

That only left her more disturbed, emotions rolling from one thing to the next without ever landing on just one feeling. “Our families won’t merge now, regardless if we’re married or not. So you lied to me earlier when you said that’s what this was about. A marriage is only going to cause more issues. I’m worthless to the Bratva; you practically said so yourself.”

“No, you’re worth a great deal, especially if you’re married to me.”

But, why?

“You’re hiding something from me,” she realized, hurt that he was lying again, even if it was by omission. Viviana couldn’t decide which stung worse—that he didn’t trust her, or that he thought she didn’t deserve to know whatever it was. “What aren’t you saying?”

Anton looked stricken, fingers drumming a quick beat on his thighs. “I gave them my word. It was supposed to be them explaining this to you if they desired to—all the reasons and things that happened years ago. It’s not my story to tell, and I promised. My word is all I’m worth if you consider the way I live; without it, I have nothing.”

Reaching out, he cupped a hand over her knee and ran it along the inside of her jittery leg. With his fingers moving so softly against her inner thigh, he pressed his fingertips close enough to her center to make Viviana throb with need. Murmuring, he said, “Can’t you try to trust me? Viviana, you know me … you do.”

She ignored his plea. “Who, Anton?” His fingers pressed harder at her words, grip tightening when Viviana refused to react to his motions. What she really wanted was more. So much more of his hands on her body, but she didn’t dare speak that out loud. “Was it my father, or Nicoli? Who?”

“I can’t answer that right now.” With that, he stood and held out a hand for her to take. “Come, I’ll get you back in bed for the evening. Let you rest and get the last of that sedative out of your system. I promise you’ll feel better in the morning.”

Too exhausted to argue, her palm met his. Anton’s lips touched down to Viviana’s fingers in a flutter of movement. She wouldn’t have noticed the quick kiss had she not felt the heat of his mouth brushing along her sensitive skin. She might as well have been sixteen and falling for him all over again.

Viviana couldn’t figure out if she was willing enough to let him do it. It didn’t help that she wasn’t all too sure if she knew this man anymore. Was he the same one she wanted all those years ago? Had his feelings remained the same nearly a decade later … was that even possible? Could someone want another that much?

What was even more frightening was that with his blue eyes watching, and his hand connected with hers, waiting, Anton still felt like hers.

Just like he always had.

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