12 July 2014

Beasthood Tour Stop!

Beasthood - Tour Banner
Beasthood - Book Cover 
The bloody, raw meat was tantalizing her; calling to her. She hated it and yearned for it all at once.
Stop, she ordered. What are you doing?!
So hungryyyyy, snarled a primal voice deep within her.
Don’t you dare! she screamed back.
But the primal hunger ignored her pleas and took over her body, forcing her rational voice deep within the crevices of her mind.

What would you do if you discovered you weren't human? That you turned into a bloodthirsty monster against your will?
What if your instincts, emotions and desires were torn between your own and the dark, dangerous animal lurking inside of you?
If it could make you yearn for someone you shouldn't, make you say and act in ways you wouldn't and overwhelm your whole existence?
If everything you'd ever known about your life was a lie?

In a world where a deeply hidden community is swathed in mystery, deadly secrets, betrayal and murder, Jaz Barker struggles to fight against the dangerous Beast within her and the emotions and desires it thrusts her way.

When tensions ride high and people she cares about are put in danger, she will have to decide how much of her newly awakened animal-side she's willing to let in.

And if it is worth the risk...
Beasthood is the story of Jaz Barker and a hidden community of wolf shifters living in Northern England. There is a great deal going on within the shifter community called Deer Creek, whispers of half-breed exterminator/Cur hunters, rival packs moving in and traitors amongst the Deer Creek pack.

 A.Z Green does a good job of slowly building up those whispers into deeper stories of mystery, dark tales and romance. She weaves together a story full of twists and turns, starting the book off with a bloody bang. I definitely wanted to read on after the intense prologue. The story includes flashbacks and flash-forwards, setting up two separate story lines, one in the past that focuses on Lora through her diary entries, and one in the present that focuses on Jasmine/Jaz. It’s an interesting take on story telling but it did make it hard to connect to some of the characters. The abrupt transitioning between past and present was jarring at times.

The first time we are introduced to the feisty main character Jaz Barker she’s waking up from a nightmare covered in her own blood. She’s mourning the loss of a child she wasn’t even carrying but one she experienced the physical and emotional pain of losing.

Initially, I wasn’t thrilled with Jaz. She had the impression of someone rather immature and selfish for a 21 year old. However, as the story develops her personality expands beyond naïve pouty teenager and flourishes into a sarcastic, independent, strong and defiant woman.

Jasmine’s life seems normal but it’s full of secrets that she isn’t even aware of until a mysterious Aunt Erica shows up and invites her on a spa holiday. While Jasmine’s parents are visibly uncomfortable and suspicious, Jasmine excitedly agrees to go off with her Aunt Erica.

The spa holiday quickly turns into a kidnapping ordeal from hell. Jasmine finds herself trapped, desperate, confused and angry. She’s going through experiences she doesn’t understand, locked up in a cell by her own Aunt, and she’s developing a hunger for bloody raw meat!

As the story starts to unfold things quickly go from confusing to smack me upside the head overwhelming.

Jaz discovers that her parents aren’t her biological parents and that her nightmare of losing a child was a REAL event experienced by her twin sister Lora who died giving birth. A twin sister she didn’t know even existed who belonged to this secret community of shifters. Before Jasmine can stop and take in the revelation of being adopted, having biological pure breed shifter parents who are still alive and having had a twin who has died, she is introduced to other extended family members who are part of the Deer Creek pack, an Uncle named Garik and a grandmother named Maria.

Jaz attempts to settle in at Deer Creek, but she remains in denial of her shifter side and fears becoming a beast. She doesn’t understand the violent traditions or the strict rules of the pack. Despite her trepidations she ends up developing a tight knit friendship with fellow shifters Alf, Skye, Ronnie, Kenna, and Kelda, who have grown up within the community.

The leader of the pack is Nik Driver. He’s hot, elusive, and mysterious. He has his eyes set on Jasmine but he doesn’t want to make his feelings toward her publicly known, for her safety and his sanity. The two share some heated moments but they have a list of hurdles to jump over before Jaz is ready delve into her feelings for a man who has a great deal of secrets he has yet to reveal about himself and the pack.

Overall, the book was a good read. Some of the character descriptions were awkward. I will admit I internally cringed every time I read Fraya, the cold-hearted antagonist of the story described as “Oriental eyes.” I’m not exactly rushing to read the next books in the series but the story has potential so I do plan on eventually reading them.  I definitely want to know who Black Cloak is and why hybrids/half breeds are being hunted. I’m hoping at some point in the other books A.Z Green delves deeper into Nik’s personality allowing us to connect more to him beyond his position as leader and potential mate. I want to read more about Nik’s handsome brother Swain, and the mysterious rival Viking leader of the Red Sword Pack, Njord Rasmussen, what is he up to and how is he connected to the hybrids.  
“For the fourth round, the judges have decided that the two opponents must face each other in their Beast form, starting now!”
The crowd drowned out his rumbling voice and went manic.
Jaz stared in disgusted awe as Kain's body contorted and twisted and crunched until he turned into a Beast. His roars and howls were spine-chilling, sending shivers through every inch of her. But she realized her reaction wasn't because of him.
Something was wrong with Nik.
“Why isn't he Changing?” Alf barked. “Why the fuck isn't he Changing?!”
Jaz gaped at Nik who was standing completely still. Kain's spine cracked and dark brown hair began pushing through his skin, covering his Changing body. His jaw crunched as it lengthened.
“He can't Change,” she uttered in a low voice, mostly to herself. The air in her lungs suddenly felt like a ball coated in spikes.
“He can't bloody Change! He must be too weak!” She clamped her hands to her mouth just as Kain lunged straight for Nik.
Before she knew what she was doing, she jumped forward, tripping over the thigh-high barrier. She felt Alf's hand whip past her, missing a grip on her arm before she saw the sand floor of the arena below her, rushing towards her. She held out her hands just in time to try to soften the fall before she slammed into the ground; the wind was knocked out of her and she grunted.
Half the crowd turned in her direction, some pointing at her, the other half who hadn't yet seen her still had their eyes glued to the cage. She cocked her head up, saw the Beast's teeth about to shred Nik's shielding arm to pieces, when her view was blocked by someone's back as they pounded towards the cage. One by one, five more Weres jumped down from behind her, dodging her as they raced towards the metal dome. She stared in bewilderment as two more sprang out from the barrier containing the pulsing crowd on the other side. The increase of Weres on the arena floor caused an uproar in the crowd and Judges Stand.
Jaz saw the two cage guards knocked out on the floor just before she felt an arm around her, yanking her to her feet. She wheeled round to face the cold, beautiful eyes of her enemy.
“Fraya!” she barked, teeth bared. Njord's note had confirmed the feeling in her gut that the cold-hearted bitch standing in front of her had killed Lora and her unborn child. Jaz wanted to squeeze the life out of her and enjoy watching it. But the guilt-stricken look in Fraya's eyes stopped her.
“Need a hand?” Fraya offered.
Jaz studied her suspiciously but urgency kicked her into action. She pushed her emotions aside, ignoring Fraya as she bolted across the sand floor, sprinting over and around Weres fighting and throwing punches at each other. She couldn't tell who was with her or against her. She didn't care. She just needed to see if Nik was alive.
Beast Kain was roaming around the cage, pacing back and forth. Nik was in the middle still standing and Jaz exhaled with relief. Alf was pushing others back from the cage. The wispy-haired judge was screeching into his microphone, calling for order.
It was then that the balls of fire shot out of nowhere.
Jaz screamed as one hurled in her direction. Those in front of her path ducked, and she dived to the side just in time. Then there was another from a different direction, coming from her left this time. She ran forward. Then came another, and another all being shot from guns fixed into the stone barrier just below the crowd. Jaz spotted square holes that had been opened for the guns to fire through, before she had to dive again.
The heat of the balls turned the arena into Hell itself. She ran towards the cage but was stopped in her path as more fireballs in quicker succession exploded out into the arena. The fireballs bounced off the wall of glass protecting the crowd. Jaz had no idea when or how the glass wall had appeared.
As she ducked down on the ground she noticed the balls of fire seemed to purposely miss the cage, aiming only at those who'd disrupted the fight. Some of the people dispersed as quickly as they could. But others weren't so lucky.
Jaz cried out when a man next to her, not much older than she was, was hit in the chest by a fireball. He fell back screaming like a banshee. She jumped away, falling onto her butt as she gawked at him. His clothes were melted to his torso and the skin was burnt off like candle wax. He held his burnt flesh, and it was then Jaz saw the enormous hole in his body; his intestines, stomach and liver burnt away; his spine was visible, charcoal black and smoking. She sagged over her bent knees, clutching her stomach as the unbearable stench made her retch.
He was gasping as his hands scrambled around his stomach, as if trying to hold himself together. More skin slid away like red-hot melted cheese from his touch. And then he held up his burnt hands screaming because he'd rubbed away the flesh and muscle from them, leaving nothing but charred bone. Then he gurgled as he choked on his own blood, unable to breathe.
Jaz sprang to her feet, holding her hand to her mouth. Her eyes widened to saucers when she saw the fireball hurtling towards her. Before she was a human barbecue, someone knocked her down from behind and the fireball flew past her, hitting the wall. 
She swung round to find Fraya again. She should have shoved Fraya into the path of a fireball but the horror of what she'd seen stupefied her. She peered down at the dying man and saw he was no longer moving. The foul stench and smoke in the air made her cough and her eyes burn.
“Go!” Fraya bellowed, shoving her up.
Jaz jumped to her feet, avoiding the charred bodies, dodging the one-on-one combats still going on despite the raging fireballs shooting out. She wanted to scream at them to get out of there, but she needed them to be distracted because she knew at least half of them would try and stop her. Fraya was the first to try as she yelled at Jaz to come back, before Jaz pulled open the enormous bolt on the door of the cage and jumped in.

Blog tour teaser
Beasthood - Author Photo A.Z.Green was born in 1989 and raised in Chesterfield, Derbyshire. She met the love of her life aged 16 and moved to London, finally settling down near Brighton.
She has written various novels and short stories in her lifetime but has only recently decided to publish. She writes a wide range of genres such as dark fantasy, romance, thriller, historical fiction, dystopian, horror and paranormal. Her books tend to fit better into the New Adult genre as they usually have a more mature theme.
Beasthood is her first published novel.
Besides writing she also loves designing blogs, websites, covers for others' books as well as her own and various graphics. She has four blogs/websites and counting. Pinterest and Tumblr keep her busy, as does reading, drawing, painting and watching films. That's if she gets time to do any of these things with a three-year-old jumping around.
When asked in an interview, 'What books have inspired you to write?' she replied, 'I write books I wish existed, not because I'm inspired by a book that already exists.'
10 ebooks - Beasthood


  1. I really loved your review. And you were fair in your criticisms. They aren't something I haven't heard before and the time shifts are one of those love-hate things. Mostly people have liked them. Book two will be simpler in that respect and you will learn about Njord, Swain and Nik too. Thank you so much for reviewing the novel and I do hope you will be interested in reading Beast of Burden when it comes out.

    P.S I get the opinion on Oriental eyes, but here, it's considered exotic and not offensive or stereotypical. Thanks for being a part of the tour! xx

    1. Thank you so much for allowing me to read and review your book. I'm definitely interested in reading Beast of Burden! :)