Deathless & Divided

by Bethany-Kris
Chicago War #1
Narrator: Roberto Scarlato
Publication Date: December 2016 (Audio Edition)
Genres: Audiobook, Mafia Romance, Organized Crime


Lies and love. This is how a war starts.A life for a life. That’s the mafia way. Damian Rossi owes his life to a man who is ready to collect. That payment comes in the form of an arranged marriage to the daughter of another leading family in the Chicago Outfit. He’s ready to follow through, even if that means making sure Lily knows she’s his. Lily DeLuca isn’t being given a choice. Forced home to marry a man she doesn’t know and back into a life she’d rather forget, her world is full of half-truths, buried pain, and uncertainty. But Damian is nothing like she expects. His motives aren’t clear. Her beliefs are being tested.

When it comes to this world, no man can be trusted. Someone is ready to flip the Chicago Outfit on its side all for the promise of something better. But no one runs a clean game and these men play for keeps. When blood begins to paint Chicago red, four families will be divided by loyalty, hatred, and revenge. There is no hiding. There is no safety.

No one is deathless.

No one.


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Damian was learning a lot of things he hadn’t known before. “It might not be too late to fix that, Dino.” “Trust me, those bridges are good and burned. Nonetheless, I was old enough to be the one who looked out for my sister. Ben always tried stepping in at times. He wanted her in schools he picked; I let her choose her own. He wanted her back in Chicago the moment she graduated; I let her go on to do whatever the hell she wanted.” That didn’t sound like a bad thing, necessarily. “I had to keep my distance though,” Dino continues, rubbing at his forehead. “Ben’s a nasty fucker when he wants to be. I let him believe my choices with Lily were about controlling my family how I saw fit. That, when I was ready, I would bring my sister home and what he deemed appropriate for a girl of her status and name.” “Which is what?” “Marry her off to get her and us higher,” Dino said.

What does your family name mean to you? For some, a family name can mean wealth, poverty, isolation, freedom or more. The families that you are born into mean everything, depending on which part of the country you live in and what status your family maintains. For instance, a prince may be able to revoke his title, pass it on to another family member, or abandon his duties—but his name alone would create distance, engulf those around him with a sense of indifference or maybe even false relationships. In this story, Bethany-Kris entertains her readers with children who grew up in the mob, being forced to remain forever tied and bound in blood.

When Lilly Deluca is asked to come back home, to Chicago, after graduation—she is a little hesitant to go back to the family name. Everyone knows who a Deluca is in Chicago because of the Outfit. No one knew her through her travels in Europe—but she figured that she was going to be forced back at some time. Once she returns, her brother Dino, instructs her that she is to be married to a man named Damien Rossi. Rossi was someone who she was familiar with, but it doesn’t make the sting any less—knowing that she doesn’t have a choice of choosing her own husband crawls under her skin. After becoming reacquainted with Damien, sparks fly but it doesn’t change the imminent danger brewing among the families in the Outfit. Death has come in the form of revenge and lies, to all families—blaming one another for the act. A war is on the rise, Damien and Lilly want nothing to do with it when it comes—but somehow they end up right in the middle. With nowhere to hide, no place to go that they won’t be found—they are forced to endure what the family name has reduced them to. What can be done to justify all of the wrong and put it back to right? What will it take to find happiness in a world where no one can be trusted?

Bethany-Kris has an intriguing story-line with great character development. The pace moves a bit quicker than I would have liked, making the story confusing sometimes at times to follow. It would have probably been more effective if the focus was more on the inner-workings of the Outfit or even the Deluca family; however, this author chooses to have romance as the main focal point. Since an audio book was provided, grammatical and spelling errors do not apply to this review. The narrator was a bit stiff with his words, but certain scenes were good for it. If you are a reader of organized crime and romance, you may find this to be an entertaining story with a little twist. Since this is the first installment within the Chicago War Series, readers are able to jump right in.

An audio book was provided to Turning Another Page by IndieSage PR, but this in no way affects our honest opinion of the book or the review that has been written.


“Why did you join the Outfit?” she asked, honestly curious.

“I didn’t know anything else and I didn’t really want to. It was the only family I ever trusted enough to want to protect.”

His frank, straightforward answer took her by surprise.

“Do you still protect it?”

Damian smiled. “The most important parts. The parts I think should be kept.”

Lily didn’t respond because she really didn’t know how to. Damian tugged off his suit jacket and loosened his tie before kicking off his shoes. When Lily still didn’t make an effort to remove her own heels, Damian bent down, lifted her right foot and slid off the stiletto. His fingers ghosted along the arch of her foot before he dropped it back to the floor and repeated the motions with her left side.

Instead of standing when he was done, Damian stayed down on his one knee as the warmth of his hands skimmed over her calves. His touch traveled higher until his palms rested along the back of her thighs and the tips of his fingers pressed into the hyperaware skin under her dress. Desire swept over her senses like a tidal wave, dragging her under the current quickly. She didn’t think it was a devastating feeling but instead, heady and lovely.

“It’s been a long day,” Lily said.

“It has.”

“I suppose I should thank you for taking care of me today.”

Damian’s lips curved into a sinful smirk and his blue eyes glimmered with wickedness. “I didn’t mind.”

“And that kiss was … nice,” Lily said. “Before the whole killing thing, you know.”

“So you said.”

“I’d like to do that again. With you, soon.”

“Now?” he asked. “Because here, I’m not liable to stop at kissing your mouth, Lily.”

Lily laughed, feeling so off-kilter it wasn’t even funny. “Aren’t you supposed to protect my honor or something until the wedding?”

“That was not discussed and you’re old enough to make that decision. Not that I think something physical would be bad between us—I told you I wanted that, anyway. What was discussed, was that the marriage would happen, regardless of how it came about so long as it did.”

“You’re not such a bad pick,” Lily admitted.


Bethany-Kris is a Canadian author, lover of much, and mother to three young sons, one cat, and two dogs. A small town in Eastern Canada where she was born and raised is where she has always called home. With her boys under her feet, snuggling cat, barking dogs, and a hubby calling over his shoulder, she is nearly always writing something … when she can find the time.

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Scarlato grew up in a small suburb of Chicago. He has a deep, rich voice that is easily manipulated for multiple characters. He is married to his high school sweetheart. They have a three year old daughter.

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