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Unnatural

(Archangel Academy #1)

3.42  ·  Rating details ·  1,247 ratings  ·  177 reviews
In the town of Eden in northwestern England stands the exclusive boarding school known as Archangel Academy. Ancient and imposing, it's a place filled with secrets. Just like its students. . .

For Michael Howard, being plucked from his Nebraska hometown and sent thousands of miles away is as close as he's ever come to a miracle. In Weeping Water, he felt trapped, alone. At
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Paperback, 480 pages
Published February 22nd 2011 by Kensington (first published January 1st 2011)
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Average rating 3.42  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,247 ratings  ·  177 reviews


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Kyle
Aug 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Any high school student struggling with their sexual identity.
Shelves: favorites

As a gay high school student living in Weeping Water, Nebraska, Michael Howard, feels lost and alone. Hes dealing with daily bullying at school, a troubled mother, absent father, and disconnected grandparents.

But suddenly a series of events changes his life forever. He finds himself enrolled in the Archangel Academy, an exclusive boarding school for boys in northwestern England. What Michael doesnt realize is that hes just landed in the middle of a war between vampire clans.

I normally dont read

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Katie(babs)
Jan 21, 2011 rated it did not like it
Unnatural caught my eye because its a M/M YA Paranormal that reminds me of Twilight. I know, it seems every paranormal YA that has vampires is like Twilight (at least to me), but I just cant stop the comparison. Unnatural is close to Twilight as you can get, but features two teen boys, one vampire, one human who are meant to be with each other for all eternity for no real reason. I think it has to do with their googly eyes they have for one another and the electric shock that flows through their ...more
Stephen
Dec 28, 2011 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: no one
What I was hoping for in this book was a teen romance with a gay main character. A sort of Twilight for the same sex set. What I got was a major disappointment.

While Twilight has been roundly criticised for the inexpert quality of its writing, this book is much much worse. Where Twilight had characters that were three dimensional and likeable if at times annoying, the characters here are cardboard cutouts for the most part. Where Twilight's writing sometimes stumbled, here it was just plain
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Shelly
Feb 13, 2012 rated it it was ok
A few spoilers below so read at your own risk:

I had hopes for this book but it disappointed on so many levels. Unlike some, the constant POV switches did not bother me in the slightest. I had other issues. A number of the characters whine and moan, even if only to themselves. Teen angst can be great in a plot and make for interesting characters. In this book, there is so much of the whiny, self-pitying that it got tiresome and old pretty quickly.

What made this all the more tedious was the twist
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Elisa Rolle
Unlike most of the books I received to review, I actually asked a copy of this one; why? Well since I wanted to understand a little all this talking about Twilight and Co and I didnt want to read THAT series. Young adult and het romance together were a little too much for me, so when I heard about a gay vampire teenager series, I thought, good, this I can read. I was not at all discouraged by the not-so-positive reviews I read around mostly because my idea was that who was writing them was not a ...more
Saritza
This book was not what I expected after reading a few reviews and am glad I read it despite the "gay Twilight" labels I kept seeing for it. If Twilight had been even a small percentage of this book, it would have been greatly improved so if, like me, you're not a fan of Twilight, you may just enjoy this book.

I read this book on a recommendation from a client when I asked for a good gay YA series for my teen son to read and was not disappointed. I want him to read about strong male leads whose
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Stacy
Apr 07, 2011 rated it did not like it
Reviewed by http://urbanfantasyinvestigations.blo...

I loved the cover for UNNATURAL, Unfortunately that is all I loved about it. I liked it so little I couldnt even finish the book and that is very rare for me. I think I didnt even get half way through it until I had to put it down and move onto something else. The whole plot just didnt do anything for me. It was slow and there was way to much info added in that wasnt needed that made it drag on even more. Because I only got at the most halfway
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Wren
Unfortunately I had to DNF this. I feel like the author was wayyyyy too descriptive on everyday things, he went way into detail for things that didn't matter or were obvious. I didn't like the constant change of perspective either. I considered continuing this but I am at 233 pages and still not liking it. So, I'll be doing myself a favor by dropping this, and the author a favor by preventing a low rating :) win-win. If you want to read a paranormal young adult novel with LGBTQ characters you ...more
Michael
Feb 08, 2011 rated it it was amazing
And now for something completely different . . . This is book one of a young adult vampire trilogy. I know, I know, some may roll their eyes at another vampire book, but this one focuses on two teenage boys who meet at a mysterious boarding school in rural England. Michael is 'unnatural' because he's gay and Ronan's 'unnatural' because he's a hybrid vampire. I've created a whole new vampire mythology and, I think, brought a fresh twist to the genre. But, as always, the readers will be the judge. ...more
Alex Bennett
Unnatural looked like just another book about a vampire boarding school when I first read the description. I tend to like those books, so I wasnt too turned off by the idea, and didnt think I would hate it by any means. Once I started the book, I immediately knew it would be different. For one, the main character is a human guy. Also, he is a gay human guy. I liked this spin on things, because you dont really see a lot of LGBT when it comes to paranormal YA. So kudos to you, Michael Griffo.

I
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Richard Summerbell
Jun 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
It was when I entered my science fiction same-sex love story This Moonless Sky into Elisa Rolles annual Rainbow Awards contest for LGBT literature (www.elisarolle.com) that I first realized just how much LGBT-inflected genre fiction is being written these days. Not only are Ls, Gs, Bs and Ts (etc.) writing a whole lot of it, but also, lots of women, presumably mostly heterosexual, are industriously cranking out male-male love stories by the dozen, often with lusty content. One of the reasons I ...more
Brad
May 23, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: gay, vampire
This is such an awesome book, and I can't wait for the next one. Ilove the new twist on the old vampire legend. It has been a very long time since I have so easily connected with a character in a book, but I could see so much of myself in Michael. Makes me kinda wish that the world that Michael Griffo has created were real. If you like your vampire stories traditional than stay away, but if you enjoy it when an author creates a whole new mythos around them, grab this one quick.
Kayla Brown
Feb 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reread
I know this book get horrible reviews but this is the second time I've read it and it is still as amazing as ever! Their are so many things that I love about this book. It has very good character development. A great plot. And amazing detail....... Ok I literally just sat here and thought about it, but no, their is not one thing I didn't like about this book. Not one criticism that could possibly apply to this book. It was truly fantastic!!!
Micah
Let's go ahead and make this simple. I do not like Vampire fiction normally...I watch The Vampire Diaries, I saw twilight(ehh) and I occasionally watch True Blood out of boredom. I've read a few Vampire fiction books but they were ehh

Unnatural is book one in the Archangel Academy series and no this is not my favorite book of the year but i will say this is a pretty decent Vampire Fiction with a lot of new twists.

1. Plot & Writing
Michael, the main protagonist, comes from a troubled home...His
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Josh
Dec 06, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook, ya-lit
I don't even know where to begin here. Oh, wait. Yes I do.

This. Is. SHITE.

I started reading the book for free at Barnes and Noble on the nook and was intrigued by the writing in the beginning. It was smart, it was fresh and it wasn't shallow. But, like the Titanic, some of the most impressive creations can make a slow descent into hellish misery. Unfortunately, I had to experience that misery at the cost of $8.

Within 50 pages things start to go south. It began with bits of odd dialog or an
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Stacey
Jun 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
It may start slow but when you reach around chapter 5 the drama and story begin.
Had me hooked from chapter 5 and onward :D
Abbie
This book is gay. Just giving you a heads up. Oh, no, not in the derogatory and politically incorrect "it sucks" context, but in the main-characters-have-this-whole-elaborate-more-than-a-bromance-thing-going-on way, something the back cover on the copy of the book I read failed to mention completely despite the fact that for all intents and purposes, this is the gay version of Twilight. Lucky for me, the friend who lent me the book warned me about it beforehand. The romance is central to the ...more
Robyn
Apr 28, 2011 rated it liked it
When I first bought this book I really only skimmed the back, I didn't even notice that it hinted at a gay romance. Not that that would have stopped me from buying it or anything, but it might have stopped me from thinking, this better not be another Twilight like novel. Luckily, it wasn't. Not really anyways. Yes, you've got vampires. And yes, there's a bit of a love triangle... or square. Let's see. You've got the main character, Michael, who's sweet, innocent, and lost. Then you've got the ...more
Tana
Jul 17, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Unnatural by Michael Griffo

This is a story of a young man named Michael who is living in the small town of Weeping Waters, Nebraska with his mother and grandparents. The Michael we get to see in the beginning of the book is very unhappy, sad, you feel so bad for him. He is picked on at school, bullied, isolated and struggling with who he is and his attraction to other boys. He dreams of a better life. His grandparents are distant, him mother is depressed all the time, its quite the sad tale.
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Kate
Jun 11, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2011
I am a sucker for boarding school novels. Still have not figured out why, so it is what it is. Unnatural immedately grabbed my attention because this setting.. then when I found out there was a possibility for a M/M YA romance, I just knew that I had to give it a try.

First off, I have to give Michael Griffo some credit. He is working with a creature that has been used to death. At this stage in my reading career, if I never have to put up another vampire book, I would probably be estatic.
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Byron
Jul 01, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This book is going to be in my top 5 for this year!!!

The book starts off quiet poetic really. Then as we get to know the main character the story starts to unfold. It just flows through out the whole book. There was no parts that jumped from scene to scene leaving me feeling like I missed something.

All the major players are introduced fully and built into real people who I could relate to in someway or another. The protagonist's are all built so well.

The story is blindingly well written with
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Sarah Elizabeth
(Read using Kindle Unlimited)

This was an interesting vampire book, with a gay romance thrown in as well.

The characters in this were all very real, and I felt sorry for each of them at points. Michael had not had the easiest life, and although Ronan seemed to have had a privileged life, it soon turned out that he had his own skeletons in his closet too.

The storyline in this was quite good, and I cant say Ive really come across this sort of vampire book before. The vampires in this were a little
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Amara
Mar 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This Book was truly amazing in every way possible. Some people say this is a Gay Twilight, HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA. It isn't in the least, it isn't like twilight except that the main character moves to a new place and that's it. The Romance between Michael and Ronan is so cute and adorable. I loved that this book is M/M Romance, and the fact that its rare to come across a book/series that is supernaturally based and its not all about sex. I thought that the 2 different Species of Vampires was very ...more
Ptdog
May 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The writing and the story kept my attention. I felt the loss of good humans that were likable. In a story abundant with bad guys, one might think it would be useful to keep some good guys around. But, noooo! Anyway, I'm about to start the next chapter of Ronan and Michael's story.
Alexis
Mar 20, 2011 added it
it was amazing!! loved Ronan and Micheal!! Such a cute and good book!! amazing!!
Justin Bryant
Jan 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I read these reviews before buying it and was a little scared from t he bad reviews here but i bought it anyway and it was the best book ever!
Michael
Jun 13, 2011 rated it really liked it
When I first stumbled across Michael Griffo's Unnatural I admit I kinda rolled my eyes (well, not kinda, I did roll my eyes). In a market already saturated with teenage vampires full of angst, did we really need another one? What made this one so different from the others? Well, the one thing I noticed was that the main character, Michael Howard, is gay. Other than that, based on what I read, it didn't sound much different from Twilight, The Vampire Diaries, and any other romance-driven teen ...more
Ellie
Nov 01, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: z-2016
2/22/2016 Before I begin, let me just say, this book was nothing like I was expecting. This is a clear case of "Don't judge a book by its cover."
Actually, I'm not even finished with the book yet. I'm only about halfway through. I'm just afraid the ending will be extreme, and flush away all my other opinions I was having while reading the beginning.

For the first five chapters, I wasn't even sure if I was reading the right book. I actually checked to make sure it wasn't a different book tucked
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Zizi
Oct 25, 2017 rated it liked it
This book lacked things I usually look for in novels: plot, consistent worldbuilding, character growth, etc. But the gay aspect made up for it. Ronan and Michael were so cute I can't even form proper words!I also liked Nakano (I may be in a minority here) and felt as if he needed more background. The other characters, Fritz and Co. just felt like they were put there out of necessity so Griffo could have more diversity. Which is fine but I just wished we spent more time developing the ...more
Eternaldissident
Oct 24, 2017 rated it did not like it
This book was so bad I couldn't finish reading. The insta-love is puke inducing. The fake attempts at teenage drama are cringey. The author should be ashamed to have allowed this to be published in its current state. I was looking for more lgbtq fantasy and kept picking and kept picking up this book and thinking about reading it and sadly it never got any better. on and off I can't bring it over. Of weeks and basically had to force myself to pick it up and continue each time. there's definitely ...more
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Michael Griffo was born, raised, and has since relocated to New Jersey. He is an award-winning playwright and all of his plays have been produced throughout the country and in London. Two of his plays -- CLOUDY and 5G/10B -- have been published in Smith & Kraus's Best 10 Minute Plays for 2 Actors: 2005 and CLOUDY is licensed by Playscripts, Inc.

His first novel, BETWEEN BOYFRIENDS, was written
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Other books in the series

Archangel Academy (3 books)
  • Unwelcome (Archangel Academy #2)
  • Unafraid (Archangel Academy, #3)

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“They're just words, he told himself, they don't matter. But he knew that wasn't completely true. The words themselves were only part of the problem; the worst part was what the words conveyed. They told everyone that Michael was someone who should be singled out because he was...sick and repulsive. He had heard those words all his life, but each time was like the first, a jagged knife cutting through innocence. He simply didn't know how much longer he could take it.” 4 likes
“He rubbed at the dirt furiously, making the circle disappear, and begged God to do the same thing to him. Just open up the ground and swallow him whole. Because if he couldn't go on living in His image, then he didn't want to go on living at all. But the ground didn't open and he wasn't swallowed up by the dirt, maybe because even unnatural things were created in God's image.” 3 likes
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