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Behind the Hood

(Behind the Lives #1)

3.91  ·  Rating details ·  263 ratings  ·  68 reviews
PLEASE NOTE: This is not a romance book, if you want romance start from book 2. See additional notes at the bottom of the blurb.

Life on the rough side of New Zealand.

In this South Auckland neighbourhood where gang culture, drink, drugs, sex and violence is already a way of life, a vicious attack on a teenage girl sparks a ripple effect of revenge and fury. Live the carnage
Kindle Edition, 357 pages
Published August 11th 2011
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Average rating 3.91  · 
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DNF. I will refrain from rating this book because it’s my bad after all that I even considered reading Behind the Hood.


This pic depicts why I wanted to read the book. Don’t we all love a delectable tattooed hunk? Even though YA is not my genre the blurb says:

SPECIAL NOTE: Although some reviewers have classified this book as YA, this is not a YA read. The main characters may be teenagers, but they are living in a harsh adult environment.

I should have known better...stupid me (I downloaded
JaHy☝Hold the Fairy Dust
Aug 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those whom love hating a character.
Recommended to JaHy☝Hold the Fairy Dust by: Chippy Marco

Hold up, I need a drink before I can even attempt this......

Alrighty then... "Behind the Hood" is a tragic, violent and emotional tale in which chronicles the trials and tribulations of youth Gang members in South Auckland neighborhood. It is NOT for the faint of heart, in fact I will probably be prescribed blood pressure medication at my next doctor's appointment.

The story revolves around Tama....... Tama, Tama, Tama........ Ugh! How do I begin to explain this fuckt
Marita Hansen
Sep 21, 2013 added it  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition

I've lowered my first book BEHIND THE HOOD to .99 cents USD. I think it's $1.14 NZD. Anyway, it's like Once Were Warriors on speed; it's fast paced and follows some teens from South Auckland, New Zealand. It's based on a town that I used to live in, along with it's neighbouring town. If you live there, you might recognise some of the landmarks, though the pub I mention in chapter 1 is gone. I think a Maccas replaced it. The book is set about a decade ago. Just one warn
Carol (StarAngel's Reviews) Allen


J to the H to the C!! What a freakin' story....I couldn't put this book down once I started the first page all the way up to the end.  If I could have read while driving - I would have!! And you know it's a good book when I hold in my pee for 8 hours while I'm at work cause I don't want stop reading at my desk.

This book was one of those types - it moved fast so freakin fast I could have used cliff notes (oppss...sorry giving away my age...I meant Spa
Oct 09, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jen by: Jahy
I battled with my rating on this one! The writing was good, nothing to complain fact more than a few times I was impressed with how Marita A. Hansen was able to transport me to the world she had created. What I mean by that, is the fact that I was reading about these teens/young adults that lived in "the hood" and their dialogue was very authentic, and I felt part of the crew!This author, in my opinion; did a bang up job on realistically creating the lives of all these "hoodlums!" Was ...more
Chippy Marco
Okay, so I've read this twice, which says one thing, I LOVED IT! I tend to prefer dark stories, gritty ones that don't hold back, and this one DEFINITELY didn't hold back. It was heartstopping right from the very first chapter when Maia decided to take off to a party and in the process walks past a gang of boys, the leader (Tama, who's on the cover) having already had MAJOR issues with her brother, and not to mention Maia had previously kicked him in the nuts for grabbing her breasts, soooo... y ...more
Alexis *Reality Bites*
Spoiler Free Review
4 STARS out of 5
Genre: YA-Mature
Setting: New Zealand

'I HATE TAMA. UGGGGHHHH.' My personal thoughts!

I really wish i had a slang dictonary for some of these New Zealand colloqualisms, because at times i was slightly lost but i still managed to keep up. First off this book is a hard read but i knew this goin into it. Yet still i cringed at certain places during my reading.

Behind the Hood is told in 1st person by various characters through out the book. The story evolves around e
Carla ☺Did I Say That☺
Five *can I get a hell yeah* Stars!!!

How in the world can I put this amazing story into words..Its almost impossible!!!The story revolves around a single incident that intertwines the lives of a few okay alot of people..but Mrs.Hansen manages to pull it off flawlessly!!This story pulled me in from the beginning..its raw..its gritty and not for the faint of heart!! So you've been warned!!

Behind the Hood starts off with 14yr Maia..who's walking home and ends up being chased by a gang of boys..lead
Chesca (thecrownedpages)
An ARC was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

Marita A. Hansen's Behind the Hood is a realistically frightening chase.

First of all, if you enjoyed the author's Broken Lives series then you would surely like this too, not just because you would get glimpses of Dante Rata in it, but due to the familiar thrill of danger that you knew from Dante's story.

Tama Harris, our antihero, was a violent young man who did everything to claim anything he desired. The story started when
5 Plus Brilliant Intense Stars

This is the first book in Marita A. Hanson (Behind the Lives) series...

Once again its a raw and realistic story of gang life on the streets of New Zealand.
It is YA but in this case it means a story about young adults, there is no Disney here folks..

 photo snf0606a682_400310a_zps3ea36d55.jpg

The story starts with a young 14 year old girl being chased by a gang as she is returning home from a night out.
This then kicks off a chain of rollercoaster events....

Tama is a complete psycho, he's the gang leader
Cap'n Heather.....Aarrrrrrr

Uploaded with

JKHSKJLDHFLJHLKSJIOEHOUIHUHSD:LKNFLKSJDILJ!!!! that I have gotten that outta the way....let's get to this.

Uploaded with

In Behind the Hood, we meet Tama.....effing TAMA. He has an uncanny ability to screw everything up and hurt people. He lacks compassion for most people with the exception of his Momma, his sister, and his cousin. He doesn't take responsibilty for his actions and is only out to get ahead
Matt Posner
Jan 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
See the character on the book cover? That's Tamati, generally known as Tama, a nearly sociopathic young man with a Maori tattoo who is sex-obsessed, violent, and delusional, but loyal to his friends and gang buddies and his family members. He is one of a vast number of viewpoint characters in Marita Hansen's amazing debut novel Behind the Hood. The Hood is a neighborhood in Auckland, New Zealand, where a mixture of Maori, Samoans, and whites try to make their way through lives scarred by poverty ...more
❥ KAT ❥ Kitty Kats Crazy About Books
One word is all it takes to describe this book "INTENSE" (sit on the edge of your seat intense)it's a side of our New Zealand culture that's very rarely shown to the public eye, always behind closed doors and dealt with by family or friends which I thought the author conveyed convincingly..
One thing though man I wanted to jump in that book and slap Tama side ways he was like a train wreck waiting to
Gets my 5/5 stars and thank god I have book 2 to carry on with..
Dame Sunday
Oct 16, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I felt a bit lost at times with the slang but overall it was an emotional read, very intense!! Gang life in New Zealand sounds just as zany as it is here. Tama is a prick I felt nothing but hate for him, I wanted to reach through the pages and beat the crap out of that little shit. He was just so fucked up!! I'm angry I think I need a break from reading to calm down lol ...more
Nov 17, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wow! What a great read! I don't even know what to say about Tama but this character will stay with me for a long while. I went into this book knowing nothing about New Zealand and Maori culture and just found myself fascinated by it. Starting book 2 now! ...more
R.J. Askew
Apr 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
You are living with a book you love, hurtling through the final chapters. You hit the dread, that foreboding of the post-story void you know awaits when the story is done but your lust for it is not. You start to hoard pages, to slow your reading, anything to prolong the pleasure, to deter the moment when you tumble over that dreaded final full stop.

That is how I felt as I read Marita Hansen's BEHIND THE HOOD.

Why? Because Marita Hansen is a brilliant story-teller.

Trust me, the story is a winner
Pearl Gonzalez
Sep 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing
In 2008, a thriller movie came out called Vantage Point, starring Dennis Quaid, Forest Whitaker, William Hurt and Matthew Fox that detailed five different perspectives, of the same event. Not until the end when everything 'came together' would the truth of what really happened, finally be revealed. It was incredibly well done and memorable because of it.

"Behind the Hood" is the first novel by New Zealand author and artist, Marita Hansen. To say this lady is definitely going places, will surely p
Aug 12, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorite-series
INTENSE! I could probably leave my review at this one word and that would say it all. What a nerve wracking read. At first I thought there were going to be too many point of view characters for me to get involved emotionally, but they all tied back to each other perfectly. I had no problem keeping track of who was who and how they related back to each of the other characters. By the last three-quarters of the book I had the phones turned off and the Do Not Disturb sign hung on the door. I had to ...more
Yla Socorro
Oct 06, 2011 rated it it was amazing
When a friend of mine asked me what I think about this book, all I said was that it kept me heavy-hearted for the entire time I was reading it. Not in a bad way though - but because it was written so vividly I can even say it felt so much like everything is happening right before me.

Each chapter is told by different characters, and surprisingly enough, each voice is owned, authentic - and sounded so much like being told by different persons. You get to peek into the minds of all characters - un
Lisa *-* GiViNg It To YoU * LoCk StOcK & TwO SmOkiNg BaRrELs

The story focuses on the issue of the harsh gang culture in a South Auckland neighbourhood where, drink, drugs, sex and violence is already a way of life, a vicious attack on a young girl sparks a ripple effect of revenge and fury.

The subject matter was thought provoking, the plot interesting and the characters real, even though some were despicable.

At the very mention of TAMA, I want to scream.

This book took me, tuned me upside down, then grabbed me and shook me, next it bitch slapped me and
Jo Danilo
Aug 17, 2011 rated it it was amazing
In Behind the Hood, Marita Hansen weaves a violent, but compelling, character-driven tale straight from a suburb of Auckland that shouldn't exist, but does. This is not the New Zealand most people have heard of and this revelation alone makes it worth a read. The characters are vivid and three-dimensional, each with their own goals and motives, each with their own problems, and it is the depth of the characters that is the key to the success of the storytelling.

It takes quite some skill to craf
Jan 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Raw and honest.
Marita A. Hansen provided a very realistic portrait of life at its ugliest.

I won't say more, the book speaks for itself.

Just some caution:
This book is not for the fainthearted. It contains use of drugs and alcohol, graphic sexual situation (consensual & not), violence, rather colorful language and stares not the most likable protagonists (they're not all that bad either).
Jan 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I didnt know whether to give this book 5 starts, 3 stars or 0 stars. I liked it but then I hated it and want to throw my blackberry at the wall upon finishing it. I took up the authors offer and got it on kindle for free (off amazon). I instantly liked the book from the beginning. I loved Jess and Nikes relationship but felt that what happened to Jess was SO UNCALLED FOR. Thats when I wanting to throw my phone. I couldnt even read that section I skipped a few pages. Id also like to mention that ...more
06/04/13 - Re-reading the series so I'm ready when Behind The Lens (Behind the Lives, #3) comes out at the end of this month. So excited!!

Wow! Another crazy intense read from Marita Hansen - that's two for two. I liked Graffiti Heaven a little more than Behind The Hood - I just overall liked some of the characters better, and it had Ash in it.
Definitely a nail biter. First I was worried about Maia, and then I was worried about Jesse, and then I was worried about Mikey, and then Nike! While it wa
Jan 01, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: new-zealand, teens
Started this last night and finished it this morning. What a page turner! At first I thought I wasn't going to like it because alot of the characters are unlikable, the sort of people you would cross the street to avoid. Then we get introduced to Nike, Jess and little baby Jakey and although Nike wasn't what you would call someone who walks the straight line in life, I found myself rooting for him. And even though Jake didn't have a big part, I could totally picture when he hits Nike in the face ...more
Katherine Holmes
Strong in character, persistently at pace, Behind the Hood follows the delinquent Tama after he “cuts” a girl who is hospitalized. His flight from one mate to the girls from his street gang, and finally to the married girl he has wanted, links characters who become invested in the street crime and too often are hospitalized. Tama’s sultry but offending sexuality, driving him, builds a plot that entangles too many into a domino of violence.

The book is compellingly written, woven in both descript
Nov 03, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kindle, street-lit
I got this when the author had it free on amazon for kindle for only one day and damn it, I enjoyed it so much I have to get a real copy now.

The story is non stop, not one dull moment, with characters you love to hate, love or just laugh at. Tama was a complete ***hole with a twisted code of ethics but he did have some funny thoughts that made me laugh. I really thought his part was going to end different but I can't wait for the next book in the series. And wow, what a great ending, I literall
Oct 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Wow!! This debut work by Marita Hansen just resonates with authenticity. It is violent and no-holds-barred, but not OTT.....I see flashes of these mentalities and lifestyles in the families of some of the children I teach. Not yet available in mainstream NZ bookstores (set as it is in South Auckland), but certainly should be! Will have to buy a copy for my son via Amazon in the meantime......and I look forward to more from this author.
Rocio Cedeno
Oct 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Love, love, love a book that keeps me going: oh my god! Oh no! WTF! From beginning to end, masterful story telling that kept me interested, angry & wanting for more.
Oct 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Oh. My. God.

Starting book two now.
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topics  posts  views  last activity   
Buddy Read Zone: Behind the Hood 33 33 Nov 16, 2013 08:27AM  
Book Loving Kiwis: Behind the Hood 106 57 May 22, 2013 09:07PM  
Q&A with Marita A...: Apologies 1 12 Jan 08, 2013 08:37AM  
Gritty Realism 2 18 May 10, 2012 11:39AM  
Q&A with Marita A...: Book Covers / Art 23 20 Feb 13, 2012 05:06AM  
Q&A with Marita A...: Kindle Select: Amazon's Library 1 6 Jan 15, 2012 07:08PM  

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NATIONALITY: I am a New Zealander with Croatian heritage.

SPORTS: As a teenager my favourite sports were karate, badmington, and running. I also did unarmed combat and played in a touch rugby team (my gym teacher made me do the last one!) As an adult, I've couched soccer and have completed two marathons, numerous half-marathons and one 30K run. Though, I have been slack of late,

Other books in the series

Behind the Lives (6 books)
  • Behind the Tears (Behind the Lives, #2)
  • Behind the Lens (Behind the Lives, #3)
  • Behind the Secrets (Behind the Lives, #4)
  • In Between the Lives: An Anthology (Behind the Lives #5)
  • Behind the Bars (Behind the Lives, #6)

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