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Revelation Saga #1

The Revelation of Gabriel Adam

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Seventeen-year-old Gabriel Adam is used to relocating a lot. When a mysterious assassin burns his home to the ground, Gabriel’s father reveals the truth of why they are always on the move: Gabriel is one of four archangels, born human and sent to stop Armageddon. Now Gabe must set aside dreams of attending NYU to try to fulfill his newly discovered role.

Racing against time, Gabe and his father travel to the English university town of Durham, hoping the last surviving member of an ancient religious sect can guide them. With the assassin in pursuit, Gabe must shoulder the weight of his new life and an impossible destiny as protector of the entire human race.

384 pages, Paperback

First published July 21, 2014

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About the author

S.L. Duncan

3 books35 followers
S. L. Duncan writes comics, screenplays, and novels, including the debut book of her young adult series, THE REVELATION OF GABRIEL ADAM. You can find her on Instagram and Twitter @SLDuncanBooks.

When not writing, S. L. Duncan is a pro bono, LGBT advocate attorney practicing law in Birmingham, Alabama.

#trans she/her

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5 stars
37 (35%)
4 stars
24 (23%)
3 stars
24 (23%)
2 stars
14 (13%)
1 star
4 (3%)
Displaying 1 - 18 of 18 reviews
Profile Image for Kristen Lippert-Martin.
Author 2 books125 followers
June 23, 2014
You've read some angel stories, right?

They weren't like this.

This is the *real deal* angel story. This is Gabriel, as in archangel Gabriel, the "defend the world from evil and ruination" guy. Actually, he's just Gabe at first, clueless if well-meaning, and gradually must transform into the defender of humanity. You can't blame a guy for being a little overwhelmed at first. I can't say I'm an expert on the Book of Revelation, but there is some straight-outta-the-Bible, "End Days" stuff woven into this story yet it never forgets that it's a YA novel. An amazing feat.

Entertaining. Paced like a thriller. A touch of romance (you'll like this clever twist on the archangel mythos). And here's a word I don't often use: cosmopolitan. Gabe journeys from NYC to Britain and beyond -- you'll feel like you've traveled the world while watching Gabe try to save it.

Go on and click that "Want To Read" button ASAP, peeps!
Profile Image for Theresa Le.
15 reviews
July 31, 2014
I was excited to start reading after receiving this book in a giveaway. First I like the concept of archangels and the end of the world. The author did a good job researching the historical texts and religion for this book. I didn't realize that in some religions there's a fourth archangel! I also liked how the author made a twist with Michael the archangel. I've always seen Michael as a B.A. anyways lol. The plot really got to me hooked and I couldn't put the book down. The interesting and fascinating mentions of religion like the Ark of the Covenant, the dagger that pierced the side of Jesus, and Solomon's ring are included in the book. I absolutely loved how those elements are used in the book. I definitely would recommend this book and can't wait for the next book.
Profile Image for Athy.
23 reviews10 followers
December 30, 2014
I wanted to like this book. so, so badly.

After reading the blurb online here a few months ago, I was hooked. I've never really read anything like it before, and often I found myself going straight to find a copy of this whenever I walked into a bookshop.

My search was fruitless, but in the end my father must have remembered my ongoing quest to buy it and, lo and behold, it was under the tree on Christmas day.

And then I began reading it, naturally.

It took me a while to get used to the writing style; there are more than a few long-winded sentences without breaks that make it feel a little clumsy at times, but it wasn't unbearable.

I think the two stars here can merely be awarded for the novel's potential, and it is the execution of that story that dropped it down from five. In all honesty, I found the whole read very underwhelming, growing more and more disappointed every time I turned a page. So why was that? A number of reasons:

Oh my gosh, Gabriel is such a dull main character. I couldn't get his personality at all. One minute he's going to a randomer's house and drinking himself stupid, the next minute he's going on about how he was raised to be a 'proper' boy. Not to mention that the legal drinking age in the UK is eighteen, and he's clearly not. I was thinking that someone like him would be a little more wary of this fact. You know, considering the fact that he's an archangel.

Yes, Gabriel, that's what you are.

And I think that was the biggest problem I had with him?????

Like, he barely seemed to care. His reaction to the whole reveal was... well, there wasn't really one. It was just "Oh. I guess I need some time to think. Bye".

I don't know about you, but if I had just been given this piece of news, I'd be infinitely more stressed. I'd question my faith, I'd start having inner monologues about how this means that God probably exists. I'd get very worked up, because being told you're actually an extremely powerful, legendary being should warrant a reaction that is stronger than "I'm going to the pub ahahaha."

And then... Micah. Oh dear, all the problems I have with Micah.

There was the issue that she had the same flat personality that Gabe did; their conversations didn't mean anything. It felt more like it was the story talking, and much of it was unnecessary.

The fact that she was made into a girl also really irked me. Not because it was different (I mean, this idea is pretty cool. Break the norms. Woo. U go. Much unexpect, etc), but because - to me - it felt like the only reason that the author did this was to create a romantic relationship. Which is just a little bit homophobic, in my opinion. It would have been very interesting to read about a relationship between Gabriel and Michael in contrast to the religion that surrounds them... or just have no romance at all. Like, it felt completely pointless. They kissed after barely knowing each other, barely mentioned it again, and the only thing Gabriel seemed to like about her was her physical appearance.

Oh, another thing, the way women are described in this novel personally made me really, really uncomfortable. The way Gabriel describes Micah when she's walking down the street... is that really the way that guys think when they look at me, or another fellow female?

The only women in this story seemed to be physically attractive girls that Gabe wanted in his pants, frankly. What was up with that whole scene at the nightclub???? Does he have, like, super-archangel attraction skills???? Ew ://////

+ Micah did not help at all in the final battle. She lay dying and really did nothing but contribute to Gabriel's miniscule character development.

+ Why again did Raphael hide himself from the other archangels? I thought it was important that they were altogether or something? I sort of lost interest at this point, to be honest, but I was so near the end of the book I couldn't not finish it.

+ Uriel is dead. He was evil before he died. There are now no longer four archangels, and if they supposedly had their own part to play in the war, I think everyone should have been a little more stressed.

+ I thought the special Greek potion was supposed to bring back their memories as archangels, but instead just brought them, like, one vision of the future. Oh. Right, okay. A big build up there for nothing, it seems.

I should probably talk about the things I liked now

The description of the settings was very nice - that was one part of the book I was really fascinated by. Not to mention that I, like Gabriel, am looking into universities. Durham is one that appeals to me because it's good and not too far from home, so learning more about it in a novel was very interesting.

I also liked the fact that they went to many countries; I felt well-traveled at the end if it, if I felt anything at all.

+ Joseph was the only character I liked. I really felt his love and care for Gabriel leap off the page every time he spoke. It was special.


Would I read the sequel if/when it appears? Yes.

Why? Because I can't stand not knowing the end of a story that has the potential to become something amazing. Lets hope it does that, and that this first book was just the plot trying to find its feet.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Meradeth Houston.
Author 15 books278 followers
August 3, 2014
Thanks to Medallion Press for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

This was an interesting and engaging read. I have to say that my favorite parts were the descriptions of the settings. I loved getting to see some of the fascinating places the characters went, which were described with an awesome eye to detail and drew me into them like I was actually there. The plot felt a little unfocused in places, and while I liked Gabriel, and especially Mika (AKA Michael), there was a bit of disconnect for me in feeling any true identity with them or what they faced. (Okay, that's probably to be expected--they're facing some crazy stuff, but you know what I mean!) I did almost put the book down early on when the trope of "it's just a theory" was thrown around in regards to a prominent scientific theory, because honestly that just bugs me to no end. Figure out the scientific theory before you decide to use that, otherwise I'm going to question all of the research that goes into your book. (Ummm, yeah, a bit of a rant there. I can't help it! It's what I teach for a living.) Anyhow, otherwise, this was an interesting read and I found myself enjoying the fast pace and interesting settings. I'm not sure if there will be more books in the series, but I'd read them!
Profile Image for Kayla.
216 reviews16 followers
August 8, 2014
This is a truly enjoyable read. It is full of adventure, excitement, and interesting characters. It's told mostly from Gabe's perspective but with a few scenes told from other's.

Things I really liked:
*Most of the characters were well developed, likable and fun to read about
*The description of other places - This book takes place in lands I've never been to before and the author did a great job of describing them. I loved reading about the areas and visualizing them. I think this is one of the strengths of the book, as I usually skip past descriptions of a location but I was never tempted to in this one.
*The climax! I thought it was really well done

Things I didn't like:
*This isn't so much a I didn't like, more of a 'I wish I'd seen more of', but I'd have liked to see a bit more of certain side characters who were very interesting.

Overall, I found this book to be very enjoyable and can't wait to see what comes next.
Profile Image for Dieter.
57 reviews3 followers
July 8, 2014
Well, it was only a matter of time before Harry Potter and Twilight were crossed with the Book of Revelations to bring us a biblical End-of-Days-Thriller featuring a Teenage hero...

Anyone who just Couldn't wait for this combination, go ahead, read this, everyone else, just leave it be. Don't get me wrong, this is not without suspense, it's just blatantly predictable and the quality of writing a cross between Dan Brown at his crude worst and Twilight Fan fiction...

A good first twenty pages, then... I considered myself brave to have continued to page 222 (oh God, is this some kind of Omen????)
Profile Image for Matt Sinclair.
Author 8 books19 followers
August 10, 2015
There is so much I enjoyed about this book. While it works well as a standalone, it's clear that there's much more to come for these characters, and I'm looking forward to what's to come. The pacing was good and quick in keeping with the immediacy of the story. It would have been nice to see a little more interaction between Gabriel and others in Durham, but it probably would have slowed things down without much payoff, so I can't really complain -- and it doesn't deter me from giving it a five-star rating.
August 12, 2014
Thoroughly enjoyed The Revelation of Gabriel Adam. The descriptions of the scenery, the sound and even the smells made you feel like you were there on location watching the story take place. Interesting characters. Cant't wait to see what S L Duncan has in store for his characters in the next book.
August 1, 2014
I absolutely love the premise of this book series. Interesting research, plot and dialogue. Duncan stepped up to the challenge of developing a teenage hero who is a balance of awkward high school graduate and significant biblical character - no pressure! I was instantly hooked and stayed engaged through the end...which, of course, is NOT the end. When is the second book coming out?

Profile Image for Ramona Lazar.
170 reviews11 followers
October 13, 2014
I read this book in Greece, also...Loved it...I was lucky my husband and daughter were busy having fun in the pool because they let me enjoy reading.
Great job, Mr. Duncan, hope to see a second book soon...
Profile Image for Val Tarpay.
8 reviews
November 18, 2019
This book has a really cool premise and tons of potential so I was really excited to read it. I made it about three quarters of the way and finally gave up. It's just not an interesting read for me.

The main character, Gabriel, is very dull. I couldn't connect to him at all and found his personality to be confusing. It wasn't so much as Gabriel himself was conflicted as I felt the author was conflicted on what type of "person" (because duh, he's also an archangel) to make Gabriel.

I kept waiting for more to happen and finally gave up when I realized it's a very slow read with little bursts of "action" throughout.

And don't even get me started on the way females are written. Michael being a girl would have been more interesting if it wasn't an obvious grab for a generic "romance" plot point. I really could have done without any added romance to be honest. Or keep Michael as a male and explore a same-sex relationship. That would have made for a more dynamic read. (For the record, I'm a straight female so I'm not pushing any "agenda".. just tired of the same boring relationship tropes in every YA novel lately). Not to mention the way women are described in general was overtly misogynistic and predictable. I believe there's even a line where Micah is compared to "a beautiful piece of art" as if females are literally just there for something pretty to look at. Boring and outdated notion.

Once I start a book, I almost always finish it even it's not my favorite read. I honestly tried but just could not finish this one. Save yourself the trouble and skip this one.
Profile Image for Aurora Dimitre.
Author 26 books115 followers
February 18, 2015
This was most definitely a fun read. The first two hundred pages were absolutely awesome - but somewhere around that halfway mark, I started to sort of notice things that bugged me. Not very much - not enough for me to not give it a good rating - but they were there nevertheless.

Let's start with the plot, because it's pretty straightforward and pretty cool. Basically, the archangels have been reborn! Awesome, right? We follow Gabriel, this kid who has no clue he's actually the literal archangel Gabriel, and his quest to learn that that's what's going on. We do meet all of the reborn archangels in this book, though Gabriel is the only one to go by, well, Gabriel - our Michael is pretty close too, she's Micah, but whatevs - and basically they're trying to save the world.

Now characters. I liked Gabriel as a main character. I liked his decisions and I liked him especially at the beginning, because he was so defined from the start. That was cool. I liked him. Micah was... well, let's talk about making the archangel Michael into a girl. And that's cool. I'd love it if I liked how it was done! I mean, obviously. But the thing with this was... it felt like Micah was a girl just so that there could be a romance. Which is ridiculous in itself, because there could be a romance if Michael was Michael and Gabriel was Gabriel, though I think shipping the archangels is a little strange, but it really felt that way to me.

And I wouldn't have had a problem with that if Micah acted more... Michael-y? Because, see, Michael was like the badass of the archangels. He was all, 'I'm going to defeat Satan' and he did. He was the great warrior, he has the sword and he was just super great. But it felt like, because Micah was a girl, Duncan wouldn't let her be that. It mentions in the book that, yeah, she's going to lead God's armies, but... she didn't... get to do anything cool. She gets thrown to the side in fighting while we let Gabriel do everything. And, yeah, I get it, he's the main character and you don't want to be in the head of someone who's not doing anything. But... why not get into Micah's head for a little bit?

See, I think that this book was so focused on Gabriel that it actually harmed it. And I did like Gabriel. I liked Gabriel a lot. I just wish that we could have gotten to like other characters more, and that the ones that we do like don't just DIE .

And as I said up there, I loved the first two hundred or so pages, but I feel like the entire book could have been slowed down a little bit. It was so fast-paced it was jarring, and I really think I would have liked to see it unfolding slowly, naturally, getting more character development, getting to know antagonists before the big reveal that they're antagonists - .

I feel like the whole book could have used more development. And I know that I've spent so much time going over things that I didn't like that those four stars might seem kind of weird - but I had a really fun time reading it. The four-hundred page book took me less than a day. I really liked Gabriel. And I really liked Yuri. And I really think that, maybe, the next book might be able to remedy some of this. Maybe Micah will be able to be cooler - by the way, obvious case of protagonist syndrome, in which the person who has known way longer Just Doesn't Get It as well as our protagonist who's just shoved into the world.

Overall, I do like the book. I will be picking up the second one when it comes out. And I do hope for good things from this series, because, honestly, it has the potential to be really great.

/also, i have a lot to say about this, so a video review? might happen at some point
Profile Image for Booknerd.
28 reviews11 followers
February 9, 2015
Um well just finished the book and I utterly don’t know what to make of it. LOVE Angels so I thought this book would appeal to me but…it was really religious and the romance, dear god, was just UGH! Also, I’m not a person who understands the bible and talks about god as much as the characters do so I couldn’t really relate to them. Anyways, Gabe is a normal teenager who just wants to have a normal life. His father is a priest and expects Gabe to read the bible and such.

Like Gabe, I would totally rebel and have fun outside the church. When he starts getting visions about the end of the world, they are forced to house with a family friend in England. Right after he gets told that he is an archangel his romantic interest pops up, Micah.


Okay, so I know I already mentioned how terrible the romance was but it pretty much deserves a rant. At first, I thought Micah was an adorable character because she was bubbly and seemed to take nothing seriously (despite her heavy role in being an archangel) and then the kiss came. NO! Usually I don’t mind when the main character gets his first kiss but this? Yeah, it didn’t work.

There wasn’t enough romantic tension between them and the only time they touched was when she grabbed his shirt to make him follow along. The kiss came out of nowhere and it was just so rushed that it just UGH! THEN! Then he started to have stronger feelings for her. Wha? Really Gabe? You hardly know her. I understand that you two are archangels and that you are both alone with hardly a life but grrr. I couldn’t get attached to them both.


When time is running out, Gabe and Micah are trying to hone their angel powers before the enemy kills them and starts the end of the world phase. Septis, the bad guy, was cool probably because he was more serious and not lovey dovey. I liked him. Anyways, they are forced to relocate to Egypt now to find the Ark for a ring that is oh so powerful and could win against Septis.

Despite the lack of romance, this book is so violent. I was surprised at how explicit the death scenes were (mostly due to septis) so don’t read this if you don’t like gore. With the negatives out of the way, the storyline was a tad slow but it was interesting. Never read a book that had angels like this and it was a cool concept because we get to see a boy develop and learn what it means to be an angel. The author provided lovely details (except for the violence haha) and it felt real. Some of the dialogue was interesting because it was mostly focused on religion so that was unique. It was a good read despite the negatives but unsure if the second book will be on my table or bookshelf.

Profile Image for Sarah-Jayne Briggs.
Author 1 book47 followers
August 22, 2015
(I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a review).
(This review may contain spoilers).

I’ve wanted to read this book for a while now, so when I was invited to be a part of the blog tour… I immediately jumped at the chance.

Even though angels have become quite over-used in fiction to date, I still found this book a really entertaining read. I found myself able to empathise really well with Gabriel’s character. Even though I would have liked to see more of his interactions with his fellow students, there was enough detail about his character that I felt like I knew him really well by the end of the book.

I liked seeing Gabriel’s relationship with his father. While I did think that his dad was a bit too hard on him at times, the fact that he loved Gabriel came across really well.

I did think that Micah wasn’t as developed a character as she could have been. Although Gabriel did describe her personality, there was very little to show the characteristics she had.

It was good to be able to see different parts of the world through Gabriel and the other characters. I thought Carlyle was a particularly intriguing character. I would have liked to be able to see more of him.

There were some particularly disturbing moments in this book, especially when it came to the demon who was going after Gabriel. The descriptions were really creepy… but the pastor at the beginning was that, too.

There were some parts of this book I felt were written really well. The crowds of people were one such area. I had very little difficulty picturing those who were desperate for that kind of aid… who wanted (or needed) money to get away.

There was a good amount of action in this book, even though a few scenes did drag a bit. It was good to see that Gabriel didn’t just accept everything… he questioned and needed to see proof.

While I didn’t like Yuri at all, I did like Raphael’s character. Since I do want to see more of the world and Gabriel and Raphael (not Micah so much), I’m happy to be able to read book two soon.
Profile Image for Katie Haley.
7 reviews
July 21, 2015
"Well written angel book? Yes please!" I say to myself as I pick up this beautiful looking book off of the shelf at Barnes and Noble. I've read some really high reviews, it has fairly high stars, I'm feeling pretty good about this read. Boy was I wrong. Annoying characters, annoying plot line, annoying writing style made this book a difficult read to get through. In a personal battle with myself, trying not to break the promise that I would read through every book I start, I continued with this book through every horrible line or bad plot twist. I will elaborate on this judgement I'm passing, sit down with the book and prove my point, but at a later time - mostly because after all these months in between finally finishing the book, I still don't want to open it back up again...
Profile Image for Morgan.
46 reviews
June 20, 2015
I received this book in a Goodreads FirstReads giveaway.

I received this book in the mail and put it to one side for a while because life got in the way but once I picked it up I struggled to put it down. I didn't even manage to add it to my reading list on goodreads because I honestly didn't want to stop reading to do it.

Maybe you think angel books aren't for you. Or maybe you think angel books are the best thing since sliced bread. Either way this book is for you!
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