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The After Another Series #1

One Step After Another

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He finds the unfindable, but she’s terribly good at hiding …

Penny Dunsworth is dead.

Well, she should be—a piece of her certainly is. The broken girl she once was no longer exists. Now a trained assassin for The League, she’s turned into the worst nightmare for the monsters who once haunted her every waking moment. She has to be … it’s the only way to keep her past safe. That is if she can keep it from catching up.

Luca Puzza is chasing a ghost.

He’s never once been able to catch her in the five years that he spent searching. Until now. The promise he made to find the girl who disappeared without a trace turned into an obsession that changed his life. But the woman he was looking for is only a shadow of who he finds. She’s dangerous … for his heart and life, and so are the secrets she’s protecting.

One can only play with monsters for so long before they start to notice you’re not the same. In this world, predators can just as easily become prey.

Except she stopped being a victim long ago.
And it’s time for this to end.


Note: One Step After Another is book one of the After Another trilogy following the same couple over a journey that takes them from present, to past, to future. The books should be read in order. The trilogy discusses triggering topics that may be uncomfortable for some. Please be advised and read at your own discretion.

145 pages, Paperback

First published September 14, 2020

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About the author


107 books4,154 followers
The author of too many novels to count, Bethany-Kris is a Canadian, lover of much, and mother to four sons, a glaring of cats, and a pack of 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, a snuggling cat, barking dogs, and a spouse calling over his shoulder, she is nearly always writing something ... when she can find the time.

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5 stars
130 (38%)
4 stars
113 (33%)
3 stars
62 (18%)
2 stars
20 (5%)
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10 (2%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 78 reviews
Profile Image for Deanna❤Pink Lady❤️.
816 reviews838 followers
September 10, 2020
5 “Finally” Stars

Wow.....this book touched me emotionally. It’s not an easy read due to the circumstances that the heroine has endured in her short 23 years of life. The barbarity of sex trafficking, especially the young, is vile, cruel and inhuman. Power, money and the dark web keep things quiet and secluded.

Penny, “the white ghost” is a survivor but the cost of surviving has taken a toll on her soul and her memories never go away. She is on a mission that has taken her away from people that truly care and love her. She can’t go back because “those that hurt her” will know who to hurt. But then Luca finds her, he is bound and determined to find out all the answers to questions that have been brewing for the last 5 years since she disappeared without a trace. She won’t escape him now and those feelings she had as a teenage, a sweet crush, comes back with full force and desire. But there is no future with Luca and Penny must still complete her mission no matter the cost.

This book one of the trilogy was fast paced and packed with major emotional drama. It set the narrative to what will be a climactic story of danger, revenge, suspense, hope, turmoil and hopeful love. I love that characters from prior stories made cameos. I also loved the ending to this story. It was eye opening and I truly can’t wait for the next book in this trilogy. I know it must get worse to get better so I hope and pray my heart makes it in the process.

*advanced copy graciously provided by author in exchange for an honest review*
Profile Image for Jessica Alcazar.
3,920 reviews447 followers
September 14, 2020

I hate reviewing these types of trilogies/duets. There, I said it. This is especially grueling when there is zero I can say to you about the book itself.

So, this is me, struggling for the better part of a week on how to review this book … … … *crickets*

Nevertheless, I have some thoughts I’d like to share. One is, if you think you can zip right thru this story, think again. I like my stories to be true to life so I’m well versed in all kinds of realities, and I couldn’t do it. I’ve been around the block a time or two so I don’t look at life thru rose-colored glasses, and I still couldn’t do it. I need you to hear me when I say that this story lives in the dark shadows of society. This part of the trilogy takes place in today’s timeline and I still couldn’t do it. Why? Because there are moments on the page that are mere recollections for our heroine but for me, it was like BAM and I had to pause. You may be completely different, I don’t know. I just want to be crystal clear in letting you know the warning statement in the synopsis is real .

Another thought I’d like to share is that Bethany-Kris writes ridiculously well. I can’t imagine what it must feel like to be inside her head, but it must be glorious. The plot unfolds in a way where even though you kinda know where the story is headed, you are still surprised when it gets there, because it’s never a clear-cut, black/white situation. It can always turn on a dime and you just never know.

I said this in a status update while reading,
This is a lot, and we’ve barely covered the surface. Also, I’m crying like a baby right now of what was, what is, and what I am sure will be ... *sigh*
This story is going to rip you apart and hopefully put you back together. It is perverse and vile and deals with the lowest of humanity. But I just finished reading the present and Penny survived an unimaginable childhood and is here to set things right and I can’t wait to read how she triumphs!

Grab your copy of One Step After Another TODAY!!
Amazon | https://geni.us/OneStep
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Google Play | https://bit.ly/2Y6xUIi

Profile Image for Tzelina.
502 reviews122 followers
November 23, 2020
As usual it was an excellent read!
I was hooked from the start.... despite the fact that this book struggles with very emotional matters!!
Profile Image for Giorgia Reads.
1,010 reviews1,952 followers
May 6, 2022
2.5 stars

Review for all 3 books:

1st book is set in the present and let’s us meet the hero and heroine.
2nd book is all about the past (meh)
3rd book is about resolving the conflict so they can have the HEA
And all 3 books were equally boring with the 2nd being the hardest to care for.

Not my usual response to a BK book, but I was bored. The story didn’t captivate me and the hero and heroine didn’t either.

The heroine’s background should have made me empathetic towards her life choices and her as a person who has overcome a lot, but I just didn’t like the plot and most importantly I couldn’t connect with her or the hero.

They were both very bland. I didn’t feel like they had chemistry and their relationship development also didn’t convince me they were in love.

The plot also had a lot of holes and some things were beyond the realm of possibility.

Overall, this was one of the worst books I’ve read by BK.
Profile Image for Tanaka K.
896 reviews7 followers
September 22, 2020
I am in book heaven right now!!!!!!

My heart is still pumping so hard. I need a drink. Actually I need two.

Bethany-Kris, you have outdid yourself. I am seriously in awe of you. Let me tell you, Bethany-Kris is one of the few authors who writes mafia romance well. She is one of the few authors who takes me on a wild ride with her explosive books that offer decadent storylines and stunning characters. I am always spellbound with her words. Her mesmerizing writing always captivates me. Her world is full of colour and opens your eyes to fantastic and hard hitting stories.

One Step After Another is the enticing first book in The After Another series, written by Bethany-Kris, that delves deep into a brillant dark suspense with an emotional edge. Bethany-Kris utterly grips you with a thrilling and titillating story that tangles you in a web of fast paced action, raw emotion and mouth watering chemistry. I was hooked. I was blown away. Gritty. Emotional. Thrilling. One Step After Another is a sensational and sexy dark masterpiece that wrecks your heart with a powerful and soul touching storyline of surviving and protecting the ones you love. One Step After Another is not for the faint of heart. It is an addictive tale full of twists and turns and palpable suspense that will consume your soul. One Step After Another will forever leave its mark on you.

Can someone please give me another drink? Dear Bethany-Kris, thank you for writing Penny and Luca. Their chemistry is seductive, intense and sexy. Penny is a badass queen with such a broken past that breaks your heart. Luca is the sexiest alpha in search of her. Both of them take you on an electrifying ride and utterly breathtaking chemistry.

I am so ready for book 2. I need my answers. One Step After Another is truly a must read if you love dark reads

ARC provided by author in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Bookgasms Book Blog.
2,761 reviews1,333 followers
September 17, 2020
I am so obsessed with Bethany Kris and her stories. For that reason I could not jump on this story fast enough. Luca and Penny were absolutely delicious! Their story was addicting and had me on edge!

This story is a difficult one to review as everything must be kept a secret to ensure there are no spoilers. This story is an adrenaline rush from beginning to end. Please note though that One Step After Another takes place in the dark underbelly where triggering events happen. This story was sexy and consuming and I could not stop reading. Luca and agency's connection was amazing and I can't wait for book two! 4 stars! ~Ratula 
Profile Image for ⏃ : ✦ villainous_vixen ⏃ : ✦.
766 reviews103 followers
September 11, 2020
A cautionary tale that is deadly twisted.

One Step After Another by Bethany Kris is the first book in The After Another Series. Let me just say that I am having a massive book hanger after reading this book. I loved it. Period. The title and blurb says a lot already but I have to admit this is not some sweet, fluffy romance. It’s quite the opposite. It’s dark, deranged and unapologetic. Bethany-Kris is once again back at her roots and knows just how to gut punch her readers with a compulsive heartbreaking storyline. One Step After Another is a story about choices, sacrificing everything for the ones you love, and the dark underworld of human trafficking with mafia connections.

“What happens when you find something you’re not supposed to?”

“It wasn’t just her past that Penny had run from but everything she left there, too. Her feelings and fears; her truth and lies. Now, one of them was staring her right in the face.”

Penny Dunsworth is dead. The once young girl with a bright future has seized to exist. Her known alias “The White Wolf” is a ghost story. One night she just disappeared without a trace. That was five years ago. She is scarred and broken. Drowning from the pain. But she is done playing the victim, she is a survivor and will do whatever it takes to protect the ones she loves no matter the cost. Even if it kills her. Right from the get go Penny is a bad ass, strong willed and an independent women. Working so hard to get to where she is today. The worst monsters are those we bring with us seems rather fitting for her character. She may not not fear death but rather finishing the mission. Righting her wrongs and bring peace to her so called life.

“Living, breathing . . . heart beating. She was just as real as him or anyone else in the world.”

Luca Puzza is a man on a mission. Chasing after a ghost. A woman who is under his skin. Dangerous and depraved he is a force to be reckoned with once Penny is within his grasp. The search for this female fatale has become an obsession that puts him in danger of not only himself but his heart. The game has just begun and the clocks are ticking. In a world full of monsters the real predators come to play and its time to end them all. . .

What I really enjoyed was the connection Penny & Luca shared where neither could comprehend other than a strong intense need. But being in the League Penny knows these two have a very bleak future together which made my heart plummet. This was not an easy read but it was an unforgettable one. This book was fast paced and there was never a dull moment from start to finish. I cannot wait to see what uncharted adventures will bring with One Breath After Another!

*ARC kindly provided by author in exchange for an honest review*
Profile Image for Brigitte .
1,596 reviews22 followers
September 5, 2020
The first installment of this trilogy is quite dark. It portrays some atrocities that those in power and money buy even when inflicting pain, trauma and lifelong damage. There are some aspects which could be triggers to some readers.

Penny suffered traumatic experiences at a very young age. She has gone from a quiet young girl to a woman who has one goal in mind. A dangerous one at that. She wants nothing more than to punish those responsible and to protect those innocents.

Luca gave up a lot to look for Penny who disappeared without so much as giving a reason why or where she was going. She stays under the radar, but nothing will stop him as it's now become an obsession for him.

Penny is so set on stopping others from her fate that she doesn't see the trap that she is walking into until it's nearly too late. Seeing the danger she is in, Luca who just happens to be near the location steps in to save the day. Will Penny be receptive to his help and if she does, what happens next? After all, she doesn't want to be found.

The story intermingled with The League and some of the characters from previous books. Naz and Ros are important features. Even Ren makes an appearance. The friendship between Luca and Penny take a turn that lightens the dark side. The question now is, can they achieve what at the moment looks impossible? Oh! Little Cross has already captured my heart.

Although this is fictitious, it reflects some of the horror that quite often make the news. The topic is very sensitive and dismal. There are so many emotions that make it a rollercoaster ride. Penny's decision at the end has left me with so many questions that I can't wait to see what happens next.

I received an ARC and the views expressed are my personal opinion.
Profile Image for Athena D..
898 reviews53 followers
September 30, 2020
☆☆☆☆☆ 5 STARS

Luca and Penny’s story was utterly compelling! I need to know what happens next. BK is one of my favourite authors and she delivered another Incredible book. One Step After Another by Bethany-Kris is an EPIC read that will join the ranks of the BIBLIO-ARISTOCRACY!!!
Profile Image for Ari Reavis.
Author 17 books145 followers
September 12, 2020
I have been salivating for this book. To find out what became of Penny, where her demons led her. And this book certainly did not disappoint.
Penny was still tortured by the past, but now she was using that anger and pain to fuel her for her mission, for her purpose. And she wasn't going to let anyone stand in her way. Not even Luca.
He's been looking for a ghost for years, obsessed with finding her. He's as determined to find her as she is not to be found. But life has a funny way of being together the people that it should.
Their chemistry is something Penny wishes she could ignore but can't. Not when Luca is a light she both craves and wants to shy away from. Luca wants explanations, but with a little time, even more important becomes finding a way to keep Penny in his life for more than just answers.
Full of action, suspense, and dark, haunting pasts, this book is another great read from this author.
Profile Image for *Lisa*.
357 reviews36 followers
October 19, 2022
Welp. This could’ve been really good, but so many things just ended up either not being properly explored or just veering on plain ol’ lackluster instead.
Profile Image for Coco.V.
48.5k reviews4 followers
Want to read
November 9, 2020
🎁FREE on Amazon & on Apple Books today (11/9/2020)!🎁
Profile Image for Nicole.
774 reviews41 followers
May 4, 2021
⎯» Rating: 3.5 Stars
⎯» Genre: Dark Contemporary Romance
⎯» POV: Dual—Third Person Limited

“It was him and her in that second. Two fucking humans with hearts and feelings and thoughts of their own.”

The Plot

Her past is made of nightmares and her body full of scars. It wasn’t until her late teenage years that our heroine Penny was welcomed into a safe home with people who loved her, only to leave it all behind when she turned eighteen, disappearing without a trace.

For five years, Luca dedicated his life to finding a ghost. But when he finally catches up to her it’s only to realize that she’s no longer the reserved and broken girl that she once was.

To Luca, it’s simple—Penny has people who love and miss her, hoping for her to come home. He doesn’t understand this new life she lives full of loneliness and secrets. To Penny, the choices she made were made in order to protect those very people. Returning to them puts them at risk and jeopardizes everything she has worked for for the past five years.

Luca and Penny’s end goals aren’t the same, and only one can successfully complete their mission. But when two people dedicate the last five years of their lives to achieving their goals, they won’t easily be convinced to give them up.

“It was a horrible feeling to both want something but know it could never be hers. That’s exactly what Luca was for her. A piece of her past that she hadn’t even asked for until it was laid at her feet, but there was no way she could keep him.”

The Heroine

Penny in five words: survivor, compassionate, bullheaded, dedicated, and deadly. This girl is a phoenix who rises from the ashes. She’s an extremely complex character and it shows in her actions. Her single-minded focus on saving children who are victims of trafficking is an admirable trait, but at the same time that single-mindedness often leads to her making reckless decisions that have me groaning in frustration.

One of Penny’s defining characteristics in the present is her involvement in an organization known as ‘The League’. She’s supposed to be this elusive, deadly, and capable assassin—and at times she came across as one. But then she would do certain things that made me wonder how she’d survived in the profession for as long as she has. She never checked a room for bugs, not even off page. We know this because in one scene, the hero manages to successfully plant two listening devices at the spot of one of her ‘meetings.’ At the same meeting, she notices that something isn’t right, but then proceeds to brush it off—this results in her being unprepared when it turns out that the entire thing was a trap. The result of said trap was the heroine being forced to flee and take refuge in an underground safe house with the hero until The League sends reinforcements. Now, the following is what had me truly questioning how she managed to survive as an assassin for so long. Stuck in the underground facility for a few days, Penny and Luca are laying in bed naked when someone knocks on the door—which she notes hasn’t happened the entire time they’ve been there—and she proceeds to get up, slip the hero’s shirt on and then opens the door without: asking who it is, having her gun (or any weapon) ready, or getting dressed incase she needs to flee.

That being said, I don’t feel like it detracted from the story too much, as it was more annoying than anything. Without a doubt, Penny is a heroine that deserves some love.

The Hero

Luca in five words: loyal, obsessive, persistent, caring, humorous. Despite growing up in the world of the mafia with the expectation to one day take over his father’s role, Luca doesn’t fit the mold of a ‘made man’. He chose a career outside of the famiglia, making him a bit of a black sheep. He’s grown his own business over the past five years finding lost things, and he’s good at it—doing the grunt work himself, and outsourcing help when needed. While he’s not afraid of getting his hands dirty, he tries to get what he wants without violence. This is evident when he tries to trick a guard into letting him onto a secured floor in the beginning of the book, before moving onto incapacitating him when it doesn’t work. Also, when it comes to Penny he doesn’t strong-arm her into doing what he wants, but rather makes his preference known before going along with her plans.

Like Penny, his single-minded focus is both admirable and reckless. His dedication to finding Penny—and once he has, of sticking by her side—was the admirable part. The reckless part was his continuous dismissal of the danger he faced as a result of his relentless interference with The League’s business. He wasn’t even subtle about it—just blatantly inserting himself in Penny’s life and asking questions.

Side Characters

The side characters include Luca’s family—aka the Donati Famiglia—and Penny’s fellow members within The League. Personally, I felt that they were underutilized; they were there to push the plot forward, but not for us readers to become invested in.

“Everything she did, before this and after, it was all one big circle that was destined to eventually return to the place it began. There was only one way it could stop. Wasn’t it time for this to finally end?”

⎯» Labels:
•First in Trilogy
•Romantic Suspense
•Mafia Romance
•Dark Contemporary
•Unresolved Sexual Tension
•Non-blood Family
•Secret Organization
•Life of Crime
•Disappears Without Trace


•Seeking Revenge

•Self-imposed Isolation

•Badass Assassin

•Searching for h

•Born into Famiglia

•Disappointing Son

•Obsessed w/ Heroine

⎯» Triggers:
•Abuse—sexual, emotional, physical
•Child Trafficking
•Self Harm—cutting, imagery
•Suicide—suicidal thoughts, suicidal ideation, attempts
Profile Image for Breen.
1,297 reviews
September 15, 2020
“Wow! Just wow! Bethany just left me out of words. I was sure this books was going to be good but it was beyond my expectations. A story that shows the darkness of the game of power and money. I don’t want to give details about the plot because One Step After Another is the kind of story that you need to discover on your own to fully appreciate the greatness of it. Trust me! Penny and Luca had a chemistry that was so hard to denied. Both were the light and dark that they needed. Mystery, suspense and… the first book in The After Another series that you must read. I highly recommend it to you!
Profile Image for it.sgottabethebooks.
1,343 reviews67 followers
September 17, 2020
I've been curious about Penny since we first met her and I'm glad BK has given her a book! It was raw and hit me in so much feels. I loved the strength of Penny's character and I was completely captivated. The author has dug deep and delivered an emotional, suspenseful and beautifully dark read!
Profile Image for Janee.
2,509 reviews12 followers
September 9, 2020
Very intriguing. Penny has been a ghost for years. Luca is the man chasing her ghost. Still figuring out if Luca's obsession with Penny is because chase for her or is it more.
Profile Image for Joelle.
1,368 reviews17 followers
November 21, 2020
We were so looking forward to Penny and Luca's story and as always the author did not disappoint. Before I go any further this story might have triggers so be warned as Penny's story is very dark and painful to hear but, she is a survivor and with her own determination and healing and the surrounding family who chose to love her, she is on the road to healing and being happier than she has ever been in her life.

This story was so emotional and it touches on the feelings and emotions of the reader. What happened to Penny was barbaric and sick and vile and cruel and it is amazing that she survived her young life to the young age of 18 before she decided to take matters into her own hand to protect the ones she loved and finally get the justice she so deserved.

Roz and Nazio and Luca and Kayta were her saving grace all were so patient kind and loving and were her safe place when the demons got the best of her, and they were always on her side no matter what and gave her the space to work things out in her head until she's starting to feel better. She had a home with Roz and Naz that came with safety and love, and she had a friendship with Luca and a shoulder to lean on when things got bad and with Katya, she found solace with the one who would understand and one she could relate with when the demons caught up to her and with their help and love she tried to put the past behind her.

Penny became Luca's obsession and after reading this story I realized that there was something that went deeper than friendship and just trying to find her I believe they had this deep connection that went deeper than they either realized and with that being said he couldn't lay this obsession he had with her to rest until he finally found answers he was looking for.

Overall the story was heart-wrenching and emotional and was dark as it could be at times but, there was a lot of love too. We loved it! I came to the conclusion that Penny had some very powerful allies in her corner and one in particular who was about to change her life forever. After getting a glimpse of Cross junior's past and present in this story I am thinking that the young man will be following in his father's footsteps when it comes to his intelligence and loving heart but, we will have to just wait and see...
Profile Image for Nerdy Dirty & Flirty.
3,985 reviews319 followers
September 17, 2020
Dark, dark, dark….

And oh so good! Bethany-Kris surely dreams ‘dark’ considering how well she paints it in her books. Her characters have incredibly complicated histories and lead exceptionally unusually lives but somehow are completely relatable. Sounds impossible, but with Luca and Penny’s story, she did it again…

Luca had been searching for Penny for years, ever since she left her guardians. The family business, his family, everything became secondary. Penny didn’t want to be found, mixed up in something he couldn’t get a handle on. And her quest was something she lived for. To the exclusion of all else. Oh yeah, they have a lot in common, including sizzling chemistry…

The background to their story involved a world full of characters already known and loved. The danger, the unexpectedness, felt familiar but the plot itself unique and shrouded in mystery. This felt like a solid beginning with a mini cliffhanger that dropped a bombshell and quietly moved on. I have no idea where this is going but I can’t wait to find out what happens next.
Profile Image for Felicia.
1,509 reviews73 followers
November 9, 2020
One Step After Another by Bethany-Kris is a romantic suspense. This is the first book in The After Another Trilogy.

The book does come with a caution "The book discusses triggering topics that may be uncomfortable for some. Please be advised and read at your own discretion."

This is the second book of Bethany-Kris that I have read and it definitely won't be my last. I really enjoyed the relationship between Luca and Penny. I liked that we get both points of views throughout the book. It really brings the story to life.

I do have to mention that at the start of the book I wasn't sure if I was going to like it. I pushed through the first couple chapters and I am so glad I stuck it out. The book does end on a cliffhanger but that wasn't a surprise since its part of a trilogy.

I can't wait to dive into the next book in the series One Breath After Another so I can find out what happens next.

I would recommend this book if you like romantic suspense.
Profile Image for Wendy Livingstone.
14.4k reviews137 followers
September 19, 2020
This is the 1st in a trilogy and what a fascinating beginning this is. Penny is a survivor against the odds, who is haunted by her past, but she has used her pain and anger to fuel her missions as a trained assassin. Luca is obsessed with finding the girl who disappeared without a trace, and when fate steps in and put them in each other’s paths, the chemistry between them is undeniable. This is a well written flawless story which is this talented author at her absolute best. This story is dark, intense, raw, gritty, emotional, fast-paced, and with twists, drama, action, suspense, and powerful, which all leads to an all-consuming tale which had me captivated throughout this addictive page turner. This is not a story for the feint-hearted, and there may be triggers for some readers. I look forward to reading the 2nd book.
Profile Image for Dana Wood.
627 reviews1 follower
November 19, 2020
Gritty tale of a woman who becomes an assassin to take down the child sex ring in the world of the rich and powerful. One man from her past is determined to find her and bring her back to the only family that loves her. It's a rough backstory. It's not a sweet love story. Well written but was hard to really grasp the characters and their intentions throughout most of the book.
Profile Image for A Klue.
1,499 reviews299 followers
September 15, 2020
**It is hard for me to rate this book, folks. A solid 4.5 stars without the disturbing, dark trigger, interwoven theme which cannot be ignored. I sense it is inevitable it will continue in all the books at some level. It lowers my rating by at least 1 star, and likely should even more. So I'm settling on 3 - 3.5 stars for now. At only 173 pages, this was a blink of an eye read for me, but I know there is much more to come that will be spread out over the next two books.**

Oh, I do so love it when evil villains get what’s coming to them, folks. Penny was paid in more than just money to speed up that process as a hired assassin. You see, she gets a whole lot of job satisfaction with each mark taken down. Yeah, this stealthy, ghost like, James Bond-ish gal really does enjoy her work, maybe a little too much. But, hey, that works for me, as well. How it all began was by far my favorite part of this book, btw.

In this first book of a three part, on-going series, we are not given enough dots to completely connect in order to fill in the blanks of how Phoebe wound up where she is. Now why is another matter. We do clearly and painfully get the gist of those events.

Speaking of which, I do feel the very vague trigger content warning was not specific enough. Let’s be upfront and honest here, especially since this is a continuous three book series with a disturbing, interwoven theme. Warning readers to read at their own personal discretion but not listing any details whatsoever is not a useful disclaimer, IMHO. So here you go...These books will all likely contain a backdrop of the sexual exploitation of children via human trafficking. Also self inflicted abuse of cutting.

We all know one step after another can walk a person straight into way over their head trouble or rescue them completely from it. That’s the decision and conundrum here for this main couple and yourself. They have decisions to make to navigate an unforeseen threat. You’ll need to decide yourself if each step and word into this series is a path you are willing to travel with them.

I do have hope Penny and Luca will eventually put to rest the demons that haunt her to the point she can finally have some measure of peace and her own HEA. I’m a little at a loss of how realistic it was to choose such an evil past, present, and future villain. I’m thinking they’ll get through it all with a lot of help and support from their mafioso friends and family. I’m, of course, really looking forward to any and all mob action to kick in and show the world who really is boss of everything.

One thing’s for certain. Regardless of where Penny does go, it seems Luca Puzza is sure to follow. He’s been on the job for five long years and doesn’t show any signs of stopping. As often is the case in a multiple book series, the pace did slow down more than I expected. The high action beginning set high expectations, folks. Twiddling thumbs, hanging out, and the numerous references to two characters who stubbornly, strongly still want to converse with Penny did start to feel a tad repetitive. It’ll take the next book to kickstart the drama back into action, my fellow mafia romance book loving friends.

Romance Safety Gang:

Title: One Step After Another (Book 1), Series: The After Another, Author: Bethany-Kris, Pages: 173, pub date: 9/14/20, to be continued, not a stand-alone, must read books in order, trilogy set, definite disturbing trigger factors of child human trafficking and cutting.

Book 1 - One Step After Another (to be continued)
Book 2 - One Breath After Another
Book 3 - One Second After Another

(I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced reader copy of this book.. All thoughts and opinions are my own. I was not given any payment or compensation for this review. There is no affiliation or relationship between this reviewer and the author/publisher/PR firm.)
Profile Image for Yoneidis.
1,866 reviews7 followers
November 9, 2020
I was delighted to return to the underground world of BK, this time with Penny, who is related to Roz and Naz Donati (Cross Donati’s son, who along with Gian Guzzi is one of my favorites gangsters bosses in this world).
Penny has left her adoptive family behind without saying goodbye 5 years ago to join the ranks of the League ( organization to which Renzo also belongs, he is married to one of the Marcellos girls). Her mission is to hunt down the members of a pedophile organization that are still present in her nightmares. But in her last job she comes face to face with an old friend, Luca Puzza, Naz’s best friend and Roz’s brother, who has been commissioned by them to find her. For years his search has been in vain, until now. Now that he has finally found her, he will never let her go without answers.
Penny and Luca shared a kiss on her 18th birthday and she still hasn’t forgotten. So when things get physical between them, she doesn’t seem to have enough of him.🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥
But when the League takes her away from her mission, Penny will leave everyone behind to compete it, even if it means her death sentence.
I’m a big fan of BK, I never get tired of her books, they are among my favorites.

“You’re obsessed with me. Maybe the idea of me or this ghost of who I used to be, but still ... How could you not be? How long have you spent looking for even a hint of my existence? How many times have you talked about me, thought about me ... how many pictures and videos have you watched for even a glimpse of me? Am I in your dreams, Luca? Do I fill your thoughts when the day is quiet and no one is around? Do you think of me in a crowded room, too?”“You don’t know that,” he muttered, watching her while his hands locked her wrists at both sides of her head. “You don’t know any—” “Am I your every waking thought? How many calls a day are dedicated to finding information about me? Have you ever dated in the last five years since you started this for Naz? Do you have a life at all outside of trying to find me? Or is it just ... me?”“So what if—” “Because there’s only one way this can end, and you know that. I’m going to disappear again. I have to. My job isn’t done, and it might never be. And you, well, you’re going to keep chasing me. Don’t you want something else—something more with someone who ... don’t you want to live?”“Why are you saying this?” he asked, stuck between the thumping pain in his heart, and his cock that had been hard from the second he kissed her again downstairs. “Why would you say these things to me now?”“Because who else will?” Penny asked. “Who else knows the truth to tell you it, Luca?” “Stop it.”“No,” she replied softly. “I won’t. Ever. Because neither will you.” He hated that she was right. Even more, he hated that he didn’t care because it made no difference to what he would do after this. She had to know it, too. Luca didn’t get the chance to tell Penny that, though, because in the next breath she was kissing him.
1,773 reviews11 followers
September 20, 2020
Woohoo! Another generation of studs and beauties! Sensational start to a thrilling new series featuring the third generation of the Cosa Nostra family. Luca Puzza may be third generation but he’s not a made man like his father and grandfather. He’s reluctant to join la famiglia along with the king in waiting and his best friend, Nazio Donati. He’s dedicated his life to uncovering a mystery. That mystery is Penny and why she left the love and care of him and his family to disappear. Yeah, so his quest might seem a little too intense for the situation but I’m still all in. It’s the League! So, Penny’s disappearance has everything to do with her tragic past and her need to change the future not her love for Luca, Naz, Roz and what they mean to her. She’s trained with the League to become a feared assassin and take down the evil that changed her forever. But Luca is not quitting until he has answers and that puts him in danger. His dogged determination ends with his reunion with the elusive Penny aka the White Ghost and it’s explosive. Her teen crush is a sexy hunk of man and she’s ready when he makes her teen fantasies a reality. Hot chemistry and a caring connection between Penny and Luca are the start of a grownup relationship. But Penny needs to finish what she started and end the evil. Where does that leave Luca? Sitting on the sidelines or joining her in her quest? And who is Penny’s real boss? Those questions are left for the new installment as this one end on a sad note for Penny. I love these continuation stories of this author’s outstanding mafia series and the fabulous characters she’s created. Third generation of exceptionally smart, sexy men and women that are the Cosa Nostra and the League. I especially love the League with the super skilled assassins and its chill leaders. Exciting beginning to new series with a fantastic couple in Luca and Penny. They join the other spectacular couples in this author’s superb mafia romances. You can enjoy this one if you’re new to this enthralling mafia world or if you’re like me, so excited for a new generation of bloody thrills and sexy love that comes with the fabulous storytelling and swoon-worthy romance. The standard for mafia romance. I voluntarily reviewed an ARC.
54 reviews
September 26, 2020

Recieved ARC two days back.

Even though I finished the book a day back. I wanted to collect my self before I gave a review. Yes because I was shattered.

Penny made a place in my heart. This book is as much emotional as much as it is wild. Luca and Penny have an age gap of 7 years and the chemistry between them is sizzling. Luca had struggle understanding Penny -present and always comparing her with the Penny in the past.

For him she was broken,soft, innocent, naive and damn SHY but she was exact opposite to all of that now. Quite a shock he got and is about to get more.

The most impressive part of the book was Penny, her past, present and after. Its quite emotional I wept and couldn't bear the pain, Penny went through, All the pictures on Pinterest board of Bethany makes sense now.

I always knew that there is an emotional baggage... But what we get in this book is much more than that. Penny is still in my head not leaving anytime soon.

Penny is strong and brave, that she made herself in to this person, who is cold or called ghost only so she could save innocents and get justice. The character is so well written and like always Bethany does what needs to be done. One typical feature in all her books is we understand the character so deeply that we live through them, all the while, when we read the book.

I want to kiss you and hug for giving us this story and can't wait for the next book.@bethany

Note book ends on a cliff hanger!!

Book was quite a ride, I took multiple stops though, including wiping my tears and not limited to the occasional bathroom breaks(Couldn't cry when your boyfriend is next to you)

Hearty Congratulations @bethany.kris for the amazing story

#bookstagrammer #bookreviews #mafiaromancebooks #bookstagram #booklover #bethanykris #lucapuzza #pennydunsworth #OneStepAfterAnother
Profile Image for Fiordiligii.
1,481 reviews26 followers
April 24, 2021
My review applies to all three parts of the trilogy. This story probably features the most beta hero I've ever come upon in a Bethany-Kris novel. The plot line held a lot of potential but overall the trilogy just left me completely dissatisfied. The best part is the second instalment that goes back to the time when Penny, the heroine, comes into Naz' and Roz' family.

The ending is so open, there's no real closure after all the hoopla that went on. They never truly had a chance to settle down as a couple after all the action which is why a good closure in a fast paced book is so vital to me, the reader, being satisfied.

I also didn't like that there's no real solution to the hero's situation with the mafia and his studies. His father is dissatisfied because he never became a made man, his mother because he never finished his studies as a lawyer. It is said he has a successful career but there's not a lot of talk about it as he's solely preoccupied with finding Penny. Nevertheless he's still his best friend Naz', the future don of the Donati family, right hand man, even though he's not made.

A lot of things don't add up. Since this author's work is no longer available through KU (with the exception for #1 and #3 of this trilogy) I have become reluctant to shell out money for her works. So far her more recent work mostly left me dissatisfied, hence my unwillingness to shell out 4-5€ per book.... which I wouldn't mind would her work still deliver as it did in the past.
D+ for first and third instalment, B for the second one, it's by far the most gripping and interesting part of the trilogy.
Profile Image for Sydney.
36 reviews8 followers
September 15, 2020
We all have that one thing, that one memory, that one person who plague our everything thoughts in minds. What would you do when that one person that you let into your life left their mark and suddenly disappears without a word or trace. Penny Dunsworth is that ghost for Luca Puzza.

Bethany-Kris first introduced Penny and Luca in a little mini series she did on her blog and from the moment they met; I could tell there will be something between them but I just didn’t know what it would be but I am glad she wrote this book for these two characters in their journey.

This is the first part in the trilogy. I don’t want to give away too much with us holding the much but what I can say is that there are some painful memories you see the heroine goes through. One thing I will not sugarcoat is that there are some hard parts of this book that you can get to or try to get through. The things that happen in this book is happening in our world right now and it’s horrible reality we live in. I made it through reading it and it’s a great written book. Anything Bethany-Kris writes is gold. I can’t wait for the next two books we are just getting started with the story and Luca and Penny and I know it’s gonna hurt before it gets better and I will be along for this ride.

You don’t have to but I strongly suggest you go to Bethany-Kris’ blog and read her series Naz and Rob get some contexts about these two characters but you don’t have to just dive on in and you’ll love it regardless.
Profile Image for Jenni.
73 reviews2 followers
September 15, 2020
One Step After Another is the 1st book in Bethany-Kris's new series, The After Another Trilogy. It follows Luca, bff to Naz...Donati, and son to the bff of THE Donati. I can never get enough of that family and got to see Cross in small doses. However, Luca hasn't joined the family business, much to his father's disappointment, and it's detrimental to their relationship. We see the strain with each of their reactions and feel the hurt when Luca feels like he's a disappointment to dad. However, to Luca, he's right where he needs to be...on a mission for his best friend doing what he does best-finding the lost. And nothing/noone is more lost than Penny. Once a friend, she's now a ghost and one Luca is determined to find at all costs, even if the price is his life.
Great start to this series. I didn't really feel a connection to Penny until the end of the book though I desperately wanted to. It also took me that long to feel a connection between the H/h. Throughout most of the book it felt a little one sided to me, that being all Luca. However, after getting to know more about
Penny I can see why she feels cold and aloof, and I think Luca is just the man to thaw her out. Can't wait to see where the next book leads us!
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