Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “St. Griswold College for Abandoned Boys (Xavier #1)” as Want to Read:
St. Griswold College for Abandoned Boys (Xavier #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

St. Griswold College for Abandoned Boys

(Xavier #1)

by
4.04  ·  Rating details ·  229 ratings  ·  93 reviews
Alt Cover: ASIN B00R9ZBDX2

In the first book of the Xavier fantasy series, a 13-year-old boy’s life is pitched into turmoil after his parents abandon him at St Griswold College deep within the Mourn Forest. What secrets have Xavier Jones’ parents hidden from him? Why is the principal, Ms Ratchet so eager to unearth them? Alone and afraid, Xavier hates his parents for what t
...more
Kindle Edition, 270 pages
Published December 20th 2014 by E.M. Cooper (first published June 7th 2014)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about St. Griswold College for Abandoned Boys, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about St. Griswold College for Abandoned Boys

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Rating details
Sort: Default
|
Filter
Angel
Jun 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
E.M. Cooper's Xavier: St. Griswold College for Abandoned Boys is an atmospheric, psychological thriller, surreal and clever with a spine tingling, cloak and dagger mindset. A haunting tale with steep twists and turns that make you think and want to delve into the mystery of the school's origin and what makes the main character Xavier and the other supporting characters tick. It's a coming of age story with a tense and intriguing plot well-organized around dark mystery and the spiritual world.
Moonlight Reader
Jul 23, 2016 rated it did not like it
Read for challenge - needed the letter X.

Not very good IMO.
Max Power
Aug 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
While in theory I am too old to like a book like this, I personally was not at all surprised when I did. I quite liked Xavier and in a book like this that is all important. I read the blurb and expected a Harry Potter rip off to be honest but it is anything but. This is a book full of originality and flair that demonstrates just how to build and maintain dramatic tension. I know that there are clearly more books in the series and I suspect that they will be a big hit. This book certainly has all ...more
Lisa
Mar 29, 2016 rated it liked it
A difficult one to review as I don't really like books set in schools but I do love magic and fantasy.
I'm not really a fan of YA either as I prefer my fantasy with some guts (literally) and humour.
But actually this book was pretty good (despite containing all the things I just said I don't like ha!).
It's pretty original and the characters are fairly believable for thirteen year old boys. I liked the people/creatures they encountered.
Yes it's a bit tame considering the enormity of what is happe
...more
A. Moran-Soley
Apr 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Xavier had been perfectly happy at Ravenwood High School until one Wednesday afternoon, when his father collected him and everything changed…
At the beginning, Xavier’s story reminded me of Lemony Snicket’s, ‘A Series of Unfortunate Events’, and, as with those stories, I read with my heart in my mouth, desperately wanting things to work out for the seemingly average, thirteen-year-old boy. As the story developed, I was reminded at times of ‘The Lord of The Rings’, ‘Harry Potter’ and ‘The Never-en
...more
J.S. Burke
Mar 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who enjoys fantasy, YA and older
Xavier: St Griswold School for Abandoned Boys by E.M. Cooper is a gripping tale of good versus evil with appealing teenage characters. Xavier has been abandoned at a cruel orphan school, Gabe mysteriously appears after a bolt of lightning, and Ethan is the wild card. Xavier misses his parents and sister deeply, while Ethan barely remembers his family because he’s been there so long. Gabe is busily, and at times humorously, learning what he is. Their friendships deepen as they plot to escape, fac ...more
Chotley
Mar 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Clever and believable characters populate author Cooper novel about a group of teens who find themselves in the midst of a battle between good and evil. I loved that Cooper wasn't afraid to show the boys as fearful in scary situations, and her teen girl displayed intelligence and moxy. The villains ranged from very bad indeed to trapped characters you felt sorry for.

The setting is described in enough detail that I can picture it in my head without falling into overly verbose paragraphs that slow
...more
Glenn
Jun 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this book in one sitting and enjoyed it thoroughly. It's set in a boarding school in an isolated forest in the future although it had a mid 1950s feel.

Characters are interesting especially some of the offbeat angels and the sinister teachers.

The world introduced in this first book of a series is vivid and well depicted on the author's website.

I'm looking forward to the next in the series.
James Sillwood
Jun 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Alone and left without explanation by his parents at St.Griswold's College for Abandoned Boys, thirteen year old Xavier is scared and lonely. St.Griswold's is a dark and creepy place with a sense of unexplained happenings going on beneath the surface.
Xavier and his friends, mysterious Gabe and troubled Ethan, embark on a perilous journey. Along the way, they encounter many strange characters; some helpful, some dangerous and many not what they first seem to be. Help comes from unexpected source
...more
Carrie
I was given a copy for review.

Not everything and everyone are what they seem to be at St. Griswold College for Abandoned Boys. The School it's self is surrounded by a great forest which contain creatures or things that will cause harm to those that venture into it. The teachers themselves are not friendly and appear to be sinister. Once you are sent there you are unable to leave, when you are there long enough your soul won't let you.

So why did Xavier's parents bring him? Why did they leave them
...more
James Penn
Apr 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a good book with a plot that keeps you guessing and gets more complex as the book goes on. It's rewarding to read along and try to figure out what's going on, because even though you'll pick up on some of the things the author does, Cooper is generally one step ahead of what you're thinking and the plot twists will often surprise you. There are several main characters within the book, along with a delightful cast of characters that range from cool, to quirky, to downright evil. Add all t ...more
Ivonne Rovira
Mar 27, 2016 rated it liked it
Recommended to Ivonne by: BookBub
This novel puts me in mind of that 1998 X-Files movie: Although even if you enjoy the ride, at the end, you’re right back where you started.

The novel ends on a dissatisfying cliffhanger, which is a pity because, until then, author E.M. Cooper had crafted a pretty original quest tale in which three friends seek to escape a Dickensian orphanage of sorts. Although a YA novel, it wasn't a ripoff of The Hunger Games, Twilight, or Harry Potter. I enjoyed the novel until the last few pages when Cooper
...more
Veda Stamps
Ultimate examination of "Good" vs. "Evil".

E.M. Cooper can write!

Xavier: St. Griswold College for Abandoned Boys reads exceptionally smooth for a fantasy novel. Most I’ve read are choppy and focus more on describing the fantasy world rather than character development. Not this case here. Cooper sets the stage well as he immediately draws you into the emotions of 13-year old Xavier, who is abandoned by his parents at St. Griswold College. You immediately feel Jones longing for his family (and lit
...more
C.D. Gorri
Jun 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book! Xavier: St Griswold School for Abandoned Boys by E.M. Cooper is a a YA tale about teenage Xavier who has been given up or abandoned by his parents at the unusual school for boys. It is a fantastical adventure suitable for all ages!

He makes friends with Gabe whose appearance in the book is very strange indeed and Ethan. I loved watching as their friendship grew as the trio banded together in spite of perilous teachers and strange happenings at the school. I was sad with Xavier
...more
Pennie
Aug 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing
An explosion form of characters lend a hand to Xavier, with a magical vibe and splendorous adventure into a full availing of good verses evil. This installment could very well become an entertaining series on television that people of all ages would enjoy.

The story draws you in from the beginning with a supernatural flavor with wizards and warlocks galore. Realistic elements grab a sequence of an imaginative atmosphere as the words throughout its pages suspend the reader in time as we enter int
...more
Alice Holmes
Oct 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this novel. The author writes clearly, simply and with a strong dash of humour even though the atmosphere is often sinister and dark.

I would like to read the next in the series. It has the makings of being a good film.
Lesley Hayes
Jul 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What an incredibly good YA dystopian quest novel. E.M. Cooper has written the first of what is destined to become a series as memorable in its way as the Harry Potter books – although it reminded me more somehow of a souped up 21st century version of C.S. Lewis’s ‘Narnia’ stories. There are dark forces at work in this future world, and it does seem as though in the grand tradition of the best fantasy novels our hero stumbles into an often surreal landscape, where all the normal conventions of ev ...more
Iva Kenaz
Feb 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: new-age-fiction
I like it when a novel pulls you in right away and creates a vivid fantasy world that you enjoy delving into. And that’s exactly what E.M.Cooper managed to do. I found Xavier to be a very atmospheric novel and was completely hooked from the beginning.

The story begins with a young boy, Xavier, who is dropped off at a daunting building in the middle of deep woods, the St.Griswold College, without knowing the reason and whether his parents ever plan on coming back for him.
The college is a spooky pl
...more
Shelly Jarvis
Aug 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The story opens with Xavier as he recalls the mysterious events leading up to the car ride to St. Griswold College, where his parents abandon him without cause. There is a distinct feeling of pity as Xavier deals with this strange happening, and the audience is easily able to connect with our main character at this point and allow him to lead us through the rest of the novel. Despite his circumstances, Xavier is quickly able to make friends with Ethan and Gabe, as they traverse their futuristic ...more
Echo
Feb 01, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dystopia, fantasy, magic
Pacy, with an intriguing start, my concerns that Xavier didn’t put up much of a fight when his parents abandoned him soon faded as I was drawn into the story. Alone, frightened and confused, Xavier’s story at the fearsome school for boys melds usual school details with strange happenings.

With truly unsettling events rolling out in front of him, Xavier takes things in his stride. He joins up with pals Ethan and Gabe, the new boy with the odd mannerisms. They go about their daily life at the schoo
...more
Natasja Hellenthal
'Xavier' is the first in a new and exciting young adult series. The main character is a young boy who one day gets dropped off by his parents without any explanation as to why. He suspects it's a boarding school but after a while he learns it's a place for abandoned boys that are different. He starts to hear a voice that advices him what to do and he discovers abilities. He meets new friends but all the while he hopes to escape. What follows is an exciting adventure of angels and demons and self ...more
Lily Claire
Jun 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Xavier: St Griswold College for Abandoned Boys is a very captivating story. The story is centered on young Xavier after he is abandoned at a school for boys. E. M. Copper did an amazing job at crafting a well-developed and believable narrative as I was hooked after reading only the first few pages. The author is really good at making the reader feel the emotion. I found it upsetting to read about Xavier being abandoned. As the story unfolded, more secrets and mysteries are revealed and not every ...more
Sarah Stuart
Oct 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing
At first, St Griswold College reminded me of school stories pushed to the back of family bookshelves and battered by two or three generations of children. Mostly the schools were for boys, discipline was strict and physical so new boys, often bullied, did feel abandoned by parents paying for their education though, reading them, I didn’t realise that at the time.

The story rapidly took a turn, and a firmer grip: so firm I bought the sequel long before I’d read half of this one! Xavier left at St
...more
Kayla Howarth
Jun 03, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Xavier: St Griswolds College for Abandoned Boys, follows main character Xavier and his never ending journey to escape the confines of the boys’ college his parents dropped him off at at the age of thirteen.

There’s something very off at St Griwolds, and it isn’t until we get to know Xavier’s new roommate Gabe that we find out just how weird the school really is.

This is a great book for young teens – it has everything a preteen wants in a book: suspense, light humour, perhaps a little scary in so
...more
Kelly Clare
Xavier: St Griswold College for Abandoned Boys by E.M. Cooper.

I received a copy of this book to review.

Straight off the bat you need to know how much this story draws you in. It is one of those books which manages to bridge the reading gap between youth and adult. Really this book would be perfect for ages 12 and up. It has something for everyone. Action and adventure, coming of age, good verse evil, paranormal edges and fantasy. Did I get everything?

It was a true pleasure to read such a profess
...more
Murielle Cyr
Sep 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
E. M. Cooper’s novel Xavier, St Griswold College For Abandoned Boys, is an exciting, clean, read for young adults. As the title indicates, the story takes place in a college for boys who have been abandoned by their parents. The staff have free reign on the students since parents never visit. The boys live in fear of disapproval by the teachers. The author’s beginning scene has just the right tone to trap the reader into her tale. All the elements of a horror story are in place: mean teachers, t ...more
Ronesa Aveela
Sep 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is a book that teens, adults, and those who like books about boys' schools will enjoy. In this case, the school is not a preppy, elite school; it is one for abandoned boys. Even so, it has the essential elements for a good story: the weak, quiet new boy (Xavier) and those who befriend him (Ethan and Gabe), as well as the school bully (Alex). The friends join forces on a mission to save the boys at the school.

The book immediately starts out with suspense that draws you in. Why would Xavier's
...more
Carissa Lynch
Sep 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The story revolves around 13-year-old Xavier who is dropped off at a mysterious school in the woods. Right out of the gate, the author had me hooked as she built Xavier's new world around me. He's left at a creepy school in the middle of a deep forest. There's a secretive vibe in the air that gives me the chills. He is abandoned by his parents, and frightened by his new home. But he quickly learns that he's not alone. Along with the other children, they must uncover the secrets of St. Griswold. ...more
Johanna Craven
Sep 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book took me on a wonderful adventure. With all the magic of 'The Enchanted Wood' and 'Harry Potter', it reminded me of books I would get lost in as a child.

I loved the way the fantasy world developed. At first the book's world seemed quite close to our own and then there were unusual details- mysterious visions, ghosts in the library- that made me realise this book was something else altogether. Every plot twist was so unexpected and it was always a surprise to meet the wonderful array of
...more
Mary Blowers
Aug 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Xavier, a teenage boy who is reasonably happy at home, is suddenly dropped off by his parents and sister to the St. Griswold College for Abandoned Boys. Something catastrophic seems to have happened in their life and they leave him there without explanation. If this wasn’t bad enough, the college is in the midst of a forest full of monsters and strange creatures who often are not what they seem—shape shifters. It’s also at the top of a high cliff so there is seemingly no escape from the cruel ad ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 next »
  • At Water's Edge (The Last Elentrice, #1)
  • Light (Dream Casters, #1)
  • Awakening (Chronicles of Benjamin Dragon, #1)
  • The Hunter Awakens
  • Emma and the Banderwigh (Tales of Widowswood, #1)
  • Reaper's Novice (Soul Collector, #1)
  • The Dream Keeper (Dream Keeper Chronicles, #1)
  • The Lure of Fools (The Age of the Infinite, #1)
  • Scrap
  • Angus MacBain and The Island of Sleeping Kings (Angus MacBain #1)
  • The Silver Pear (The Dark Forest #2)
  • A Scaly Tale (Ripley's RBI, #1)
  • Quite Contrary
  • Shooting Stars (A Surah Stormsong Novel, #1)
  • Stained Glass Monsters (Eferum, #1)
  • Andy McBean and the War of the Worlds (The Amazing Adventures of Andy McBean #1)
  • Elizabeth's Legacy (Royal Institute of Magic, #1)
  • The Timer
40 followers
I'm an Australian author living in Canberra, who loves writing, art and design.

In my spare time I enjoy running over the hills and mountain bike trails of the nearby pine and eucalypt forests of Mt Stromlo.

Other books in the series

Xavier (5 books)
  • Flight to Ambrosia (Xavier #2)
  • Battle of Green Isle (Xavier #3)
  • Magic in Clearview (Xavier #4)
  • The Gates of Limbo (Xavier #5)
“My sight, hearing and strength are superior and I can fly. What more do you want?” 0 likes
“Small it is, but not size that counts,’ Craig said without looking at him. ’Great things can come from meek or small. Need to believe.” 0 likes
More quotes…