Review: Unnatural by Michael Griffo

Quick note: Just a reminder I’m currently having a contest for the Spring Carnival.  There is a link in the upper right-hand corner for those who haven’t already entered! I also wanted to let everyone know that until Sunday I’ll be around sparsely. My best friend is coming to stay with me for a few days, so we have a fun-filled time planned. During which time I will likely not be replying to comments or emails, I’ll get back to you as soon as I can though!

Unnatural (Archangel Academy)“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 Archangel Academy, Michael belongs. And in Ciaran, Penry, and especially Ciaran’s enigmatic half-brother Ronan, Michael finds friendship deeper than he’s ever known. But Michael’s only beginning to understand what makes the Academy so special. Ronan is a vampire–part of a hybrid clan who are outcasts even among other vampires. Within the Academy’s confines exists a ruthless world of deadly rivalries and shifting alliances, of clandestine love and forbidden temptations. And soon Michael will confront the destiny that brought him here–and a danger more powerful than he can imagine…”

I was one of many that grew tired of there being so many vampire novels out for so long. Unnatural isn’t just another vampire book. I can’t really place my finger on what is oh-so-different, but whatever it is, I love it.

Our main character, Michael, is gay. While GLBT characters are definitely appearing more and more in books, not often are they the main character, much less the main character in a paranormal book! I love this new trend and hope to see more and more of it. Another factor I adore in this book, the love slowly grows between Michael and Ronan, in most books characters are proclaiming their love within a day or two of knowing each other. In Unnatural they get to know each other! What a concept.

Michael was an enjoyable main character, once he came into his own he was a great character. The only thing that really bothered me about Michael was he wasn’t all that worried about what happened to his mom. I mean, it was acknowledged and he even said he felt bad about not being so upset about it, but it just felt a bit unreal. Ronan was, simply put, kinda yummy. I loved his character. His relationship with Michael was strongly based and just adorable! Ciaran was the character I had a love/hate relationship with. At times I wanted to slap him for constantly whining. Seriously, was it necessary to be so angst-filled? But then I’d remind myself exactly what Ciaran went through/was going through and I felt for him! He just wants acceptance from his family and friends, it’s slightly depressing, to be honest.

One other factor I feel I should mention since it may drive some readers crazy, (because at first it bugged me) is the writer includes a sentence or two here and there to let you know what a character is thinking.  After awhile I grew to love it, but it did bug me until I got used to it.

There is a bit of a “naughty” scene. It doesn’t really go into detail, but it does mention sex, just for a heads up.

Many thanks to the publisher for sending me a free copy of Unnatural for review!

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