Hitman's Holiday by Alexa Land
It's Christmas Eve at Nana Dombruso's house, and a wild party is in full swing. Gangsters, strippers and Nana's gay homosexuals are certainly bringing the holiday cheer. But all I can think about is what will happen when I see Constantino Dombruso again.
Connie and I have a very long, very complicated history. The last time I saw him, he'd tracked me down because someone hired him to carry out a hit on my brother Luca and me. He didn't go through with it, but the tension between us is through the roof.
His life has been on a troubling trajectory over the last decade. But the fact is, Connie got under my skin a long time ago, and despite everything, the attraction between us has always been electric.
When we see each other tonight at the party, there could be fireworks or gunfire. It could go either way.
This novella takes place after Andreo's brother Luca and Connie's brother Nico hook up in All I Believe. Connie showed up in Tahiti and threatened to put a bullet in Luca's brain after he took the hit from his cousin Jerry who took over the Dombruso family affairs when Dante retired. We find out that Connie only took the hit so no one else would but he had no plans to actually carry it out. He has too many feelings for Andreo and killing his brother wouldn't be the way to move their crazy relationship forward.
The story of Connie and Andreo's relationship is told through a series of flashbacks spanning from 2005-2013 before ending up back in the present day. Connie has a bad habit of running away and leaving Dreo after their passionate nights and Dreo lives for the times he will see Connie again. When the two finally make it to the same place in the present, Nana's holiday bash, we get to see the culmination of all of their one-night-stands which for both of them have reached more deeply into their hearts than they would normally be comfortable with. They both know that because of Connie's past as a hitman they will have to constantly be on the move to avoid those wanting revenge, but Dreo knows that being with Connie is far better than being without him, even if they have to live on the run.
This book is odd in that way more of it takes place in the past than the present leaving me unsure if they really have a solid future ahead of them...I worry that Connie will try to protect Dreo by taking off on him again. I don't know that this needed to be a full-length book (although I wouldn't have minded that at all!!) but another chapter or two of them in the present would have been nice to anchor the HEA a little more solidly. I am really hoping that we will see more of these two in future books so that I can be reassured that they are making it work and are still happy together. If you have read the Firsts and Forevers series, I would highly recommend this...if you are new to it, I wouldn't start here. I would at least read All I Believe first as that is where both of these characters are originally introduced.