Hey guys, MadiMalfoy from HPFT here! Please leave a review and feel free to contact me with any questions or comments about my stories you may have! :)
Gideon Prewett ended up an ancient family tree because of a happy mistake.
Hi, you requested a reading of this first chapter in my review thread a few weeks ago on HPFT so I'm here with some brief thoughts! :)
Firstly, I am unfamiliar with this time period of the HP universe as I mainly read/write in the Hogwarts/Post-Hogwarts era, but I will do my best to give you an impartial view!
Generally speaking, this is a very well done opening chapter. You differentiate between the characters enough and give enough details about each that your overarching characterization of each comes through. These characters definitely tug at my emotions already! I'm very curious to see where you go with this plotline concerning Nicholas Flamel's "heir" alongside the looming of the first Wizarding War. While I was unfamiliar with this era of HP, your writing allows for an easy understanding of how these plots wil potentially be intertwining.
The addition of Nicholas Flamel and the child of Emmeline and Gideon is very interesting! I think it challenges what we know of this era and of what the bounds of magic could potentially be. You've done a great job with this opening chapter and I think this has a very bright future!
Please feel free to come back for more if you ever need it. :)
Thanks for the review. I don't know if I will pick this up but I probably should to finish it. I hope to get familiar with this and go back to it.
Some prom kisses are meant to be. I don't know about ours yet.
Beautiful banner by our sea star @tda!
For abhorsen.'s "TV Tropes Challenge", with the trope 'It Doesn't Mean Anything"
Dedicated to all teenagers.
Hi Hayden! Sorry it took me so long to get to this!!
In your request you asked about britpicking, story flow, character identification, and how the story style affects things. Generally speaking, I believe your language is all in line with british words, but I can't be 100% sure as I'm American. :P The flow is very straightforward and easy to follow, and the timeline of events is given enough detail in just a few lines between scenes that it works for one night adn then with the quick blip into the future.
My only concern with the character identification is that the line about ogling the girls ("Those girls included me") could make readers take it as this being between a girl/boy not boy/boy. I love the line, but it could be slightly misleading as there is not a definite moment where it is determined the character speaking is a male -- the love interest is easily identified as male, but the narrator is not. Otherwise, the style fits wonderfully here and is definitely different from the usual type of story. Grammar is fine as well -- this is more poetic than verse type writing, so the rules are a bit different.
Overall, a great little chapter! Please feel free to come back anytime :)
The first few days are usually difficult ones.
Hi! :) So you asked for a review of this in my review thread on HPFT sooo many months ago and I apologize profusely!! School hit me hard this semester! I'm here now though so let's get on with the review. :)
Firstly, I'm SO happy to have read a story that centered around Kingsley Shacklebolt because let me tell you, I think he was such an underrated character in the books/movies and he deserved more of a backstory. In the books (from what I can remember at least) and the movies, he's a very stoic and passive seeming character who seems like a person who speaks with the minimal amount of words possible to get his point across and the like. I think you've captured Kingsley's stoicism and lack of wordiness well here and it fits nicely with the contrast from Patti & Penelope. I'm not familiar with Judy Smith but I did a quick google search and instantly made the connection with Patti's character. Generally speaking, you've done quite a good job fleshing out all of these characters that they all have their own personalities while still being able to remain within the frame of reference of the second wizarding war having ended just a few short weeks ago.
A couple of things I picked up on that could use some work - there's several instances of incorrect grammar or wrong words in sentences, so doing a proofreading out loud could help with that or have someone look over it with a fresh set of eyes as well. Sometimes the time jumps are difficult to discern, so this makes it a bit confusing in several scenes as there is no time frame to refer back to. While it does obviously take place in chronological order, the whole time frame of the story is a bit convoluted as some scenes take place in a few minutes while others take place over hours or days, or merely are a memory. A way to have better continuity would be to ground more of the scenes in concrete "times" so to speak. Give it a date, or say the Battle of Hogwarts was 10 weeks ago; something along those lines helps readers understand the quick nature initially and could also help as the story draws to a close and we skip through most of Patti's pregnancy.
As a whole, I quite enjoyed this story and how you took a different perspective on the immediate aftermath of the war and with such different characters. Kingsley has a special place in my heart now and I will definitely be on the lookout for more stories centered around him because of yours! The political elements are also something I'm less aware of in fan fiction (aside from Hermione working in the Dept. of Magical Law Enforcement idea) so this was refreshing to see, and to see it in such minute detail!
Great work, and please keep writing and continuing to improve! Please feel free to request for another story at your leisure. :)
*Story Banner made by me; RoxiMalfoy @TDA*
Mother had always said that I was different. She believed that I was capable of doing the right thing. Whatever that meant...
Hey Deana, here with your review from like a month ago (oops)!
So first of all, you know how much I love Draco, so I was super happy to see you drop this in my thread. I love a good dark-ish Draco too -- it lets me imagine what maybe could have become of him if he hadn't turned away from doing thigns in canon at the last minute. Either way, his internal conflict here is SO WELL DONE. The harkening back to his many attempts on Dumbledore's life, and his final one. I loved the way you've characterized Draco to choose to follow what his mother believes he can do rather than his father. His decision to warn the minister is honestly great and I think he realizes now that he knows what and who he is in relation to his Death Eater status and the future status of the world under Voldemort's reign. Just that single exchange of dialogue at the end is wonderful writing on your part. It emphasizes who he is choosing to make proud -- mother over father.
This is a lovely brief character study of Draco Malfoy after he's done his task with Dumbledore before he returns to Hogwarts for that fateful final battle. It's such a good standalone piece, I can't imagine how well this sets up for your novel! Great job with this, Deana! :)
Absolutely stunning banner by the incredible Elenia @TDA // Pride of Gryffindor Awards 2017 Joint Best Novel
It begins with a disappearance: missing, presumed dead.
Pulled from obscurity at the Daily Prophet, Roxanne Weasley has the rare chance to cover one of the biggest stories of the year. But as she pieces the fragments of the mystery together, there's suddenly much more than just her story at risk.
Hiya Sian, here for Maze One of the House Cup Halloween Maze Adventure! :)
So first of all, I absolutely adore the premise for this novel!! I'm always down to read a nice crime-mystery-reporting novel, and you have not disappointed with such a strong opening two chapters! We get to meet Roxanne, who is not quite enjoying what she thought would be the career of her dreams as a junior reporter at the Daily Prophet but maybe has the lead to what could really jumpstart her career. I really love the aura of mystery around her parents too -- is it actually George and Angelina? Or was she the product of Fred and Angelina before he died in the Battle of Hogwarts and she didn't know until after the fact? I sure hope you resolve that soon because I feel like that just gives an interesting tinge to the story as well, especially since Roxanne's not getting on very well with her brother Fred II right now either. Honestly I'm so looking forward to how you unpack what has fallen through with Mr. Daniel Finch and maybe they were supposed to be engaged?!!? WHO KNOWS?
Anway, wonderful writing, as always, Sian, and I'm off to read a couple more chapters! :)
Hey Sian, back again for the House Cup Halloween Maze Adventure Maze One! :)
I am honestly enjoying this so much! All of the new technology & ways of doing things 20-30 years after the Second Wizarding War is so interesting! I love seeing how you've updated the world to include muggle technology with a wizarding/magical twist to it. Roxanne's got great investigative skills and a good support network wtih Andy at the Prophet and her parents too, which is so nice to have -- a bit of brightness for now in what must eventually turn into a very dark story. You've now dropped quite a few bits and pieces about Roxanne's falling out with her brother Fred II and the distance she'd feel from Lily & James as well because of this, and I'm not sure if this falling out has to do with Daniel too, but oh boy I cannot wait for the big reveal! Also, I'm absoultely in love with your portrayal of George & Angelina's relationship here -- so cute and fun-loving even as adults that have suffered such a great loss. They definitely suspect more things are going on with their dearest daughter, but I feel like Roxanne is good enough at only releasing the information she wants them to know so she can remain in control of the situation and her parents' feelings towards it, whatever it may be that happened. And because they clearly are not so observant that they know that Roxanne & Fred aren't speaking.
But anyway I'm rambling on and just want to let you know I will be continuing this in the future because it is just SO GOOD! :)
A mysterious illness leaving a handful of uninfected. A school in quarantine, isolated from the outside world. Danger on all sides, striking seemingly at random. And, at the heart of it all, Scorpius Malfoy, the only one to believe this is a part of a wider, dangerous plot.
The first of the Stygian Trilogy. (Banner by Slide)
So I remember starting this fic back on HPFF years ago and never got around to finishing it so here I am and now I'm actually going to go through and read it with fresh eyes and pause every chapter to gather my thoughts. I've also totally forgotten what happens so it's like I never even read it yet! :P
Okay so I love the relationships you've got going on here already. The train scene was definitely the perfect way to introduce everyone without it being too overwhelming or anything. Also, I love the focus on Scorpius and his perspective here -- he's definitely got something weird/bad/wrong happening with his family and specifically his relationship with his father. I hope this gets addressed later on, especially since Harry was able to pick up on Scorpius's emotions about him letting slip about the guitar playing at home and wanting to be a support for him. The introduction of your character Methuselah Jones is hilarious because it's done so well and his characterization has clearly been thought through so precisely, I love it. UGH JUST SO GOOD ALL OF IT.
I'll be back for another chapter here soon! :)
Hey there! :)
So I remember reading this (to about 15 chapters in, I believe) way back on HPFF and then I was scrolling through things for the House Cup Finale and saw this pop up and I was just like, I HAVE to come back to this later, and then I left you one review at the beginning and here I am at the end. OKAY so I love ALL of your characters here, especially your OCs in Methuselah, Selena, and Professor Lockett. This story captivated me from the beginning, and I'm honestly very excited to see that you've started a sequel for it as well because of Thane's continued existence. This whole plot you weaved around Phlegethon was absolutely stunning and just complex enough that all of the (conscious) characters were kept on their feet, and so were we as readers. They make a fun little group, and I'm so happy you gave all of them very distinct character arcs because it really gives them a chance to have a voice/personality for readers to imagine them like while reading that may go beyond just what's on the screen. The slow burn/mutual pining from Rose & Scorpius is obviously my fave, but I just LOVE his whole matchmaking deal in this last chapter with Lockett because he's just like "he still loves you, she still loves you, now makeout please k bye" and it's just such a teenager thing, I love it. Also, Methuselah and Selena -- I kind of started to see it about halfway through thanks to Selena's well-written body language, but I didn't expect it to end the way it did, so I'm curious to see how Selena handles it in the sequel because she refused to leave his body until her mother dragged her away. I'm usually a fan of Draco but here you've made him into an enemy that exists outside of Hogwarts and Phlegethon for Scorpius, and their constant ire for each other is actually quite moving and helps the plot move along in multiple occassions, even if Draco is an absolute mean father.
I'm just so excited to see what happens in Starfall -- are they actually going to take that world trip they all said they wanted to? Are they going to hunt down Thane? I'M SO EXCITED! Awesome job with this first installment, Slide! :)
Kidnapped by a mad king, Arthur and Merlin must rely on each other like never before. While Arthur struggles with choices that put his heart and duty at odds, Merlin struggles just to stay alive after being stripped of his magic and freedom. With impossible choices and heavy secrets weighing them down, can they manage to escape before all is lost? (Lots of whump & bromance.)
2018 Frog Award for "Best Non-Harry Potter Fanfiction."
Banner by 1917farmgirl. Award by abhorsen.
Hi Jill!!! You requested that I read this (and I also wanted to anyway) in my review thread so here I am! I elected to read a few chapters in to get a better feel for how you were writing this before passing judgment on it.
So first off, I absolutely LOVE your choice of writing style here! The flipping between Arthur's internal swirl and Merlin's internal swirl, each of them thinking the worst of the other...oh the torture!!! I'm actually not very well-versed in Merlin fanfic -- I also got a rather late start with the series, and never relaly got into fic once I'd finished the series (probs because of all of the dying in the last season, but you know how it is), but this really makes me want to read more!
You've done a great job with keeping both Merlin & Arthur in line with their characters at this point in the show, so that's a big help!! I agree that they are in that sort-of-friends, sort-of-still-awkward-master-and-servant thing so your writing exemplifies that beautifully! The choice of opening scene too makes me reminisce to the opening bits of the series (oh how things were simpler then) which was a nice touch. From the summary and from what I've read so far, you've got these two in for a wild ride with a mad king, and I'm very excited to see where it goes. Also, I sure do hope the fake messenger character makes a reappearance!
I'll be reading further on (and reviewing as I go) when I have some more free time next week. This is so well done, and don't be discouraged by a lack of readership--this series is not super well-known nor as long-lasting as others, but the fandom is very supportive of its fanfic authors! I'll be a true fan for sure. :)
Loved this idea, and I can't wait to see where your exemplary writing takes Arthur and Merlin! :)
Hi! So sorry it's taken me a while to respond to this amazing review! But, I can't tell you how honored I am that you read MORE than one chapter! GAH! Thank you!
And thank you so much for the loads of praise! I'm blushing so much! I didn't really make an active choice to use both Merlin and Arthur's voices here, it just kinda happened, but I liked it and decided to stick with it. Apparently both boys want the chance to tell their side of the story.
I wasn't very well versed until a year ago. Then I feel head over heels for it and haven't looked back since. (Fic is a really great way to AVOID all that dying, actually. AU is a beautiful thing.) You should try reading more - there's some absolutly great stuff out there. I could point you if you want some ideas.
Ah, thank you! I'm so new at this, I did worry if they would seem true to character. And weren't things so much simplier and almost nicer in the early seasons? Before all that seriousness and dying and such. :(
(Don't worry, the fake messanger is there to stay mostly.)
Thank you again so much! I do hope you eventually get the time to come back for a bit more of the wild ride, as you called it. This review was such a pleasure to get and I thank you again so much for taking the time to read and review!
“Two brooms walk into a bar…” does that sound like an opening to a bad wizarding joke? Right. Combine that with the wise saying that every joke has some truth to it. That bit is what this story is about.
(banner by me)
Hello hello hello! :)
This is quite the different piece and I really enjoyed it!! I think this fit the prompt extremely well and as far as I can tell it's not OOC for your unnamed characters. The plot explains the situation for the portrait very well and his friend also. I think the physics equations as the titles is actually kind of neat so you should definitely keep them!
Wizards traveling to the moon isn't something really discussed in fandom much so this story is great for starting that conversation! You described the Moon-habitation and such of all of the life there in a very concise yet explanatory way. It made for an interesting read for sure and definitely provoked some new thoughts in me! This was really well done, aside from a few grammar/spelling errors that a quick proofreading could easily find.
The only recommendation I would make is to maybe flesh out the second part a bit more, if possible. Only having one paragraph there makes it feel a bit like it is either unimportant or that there wasn't enough to write about for that bit compared to the rest of the story.
Great job on this story though, the topic and setting is very different, new, and interesting, so I'm curious to see where you go with this in the future if you decide to continue it. :)
'You and I, Albus, we would have turned the world to ashes and risen together, phoenixes, standing high above the ruins, ready to take our rightful places and rule.'
For MuggleMaybe's The Literary Quotes Challenge
Hi, I’m here for QuodPot Match 1! :)
Alrighty so first off, I loved the writing style you used here! It almost reads like a letter to Dumbledore from Gellert, even a love letter, almost. The endearing “mein Liebling” term throughout made it feel as though it was Gellert speaking or thinking in one single moment in time, without time to edit. Even though there isn’t any direct dialogue, it’s not necessary for how you’ve stylized this piece. Gellert mentions something Dumbledore said, as an indirect quote, which is for the challenge you entered this into, but that flowed so well with the rest of the story I didn’t even realize it was entered for a challenge until I read your author’s note at the end. It felt so Dumbledore-like :P The biggest thing I love about this piece is Gellert’s consistent pausing to say the terms of endearment, as if he’s speaking directly to Dumbledore rather than it just being a letter or him talking to himself in his cell at Nurmegard. It all just flows so well together and feel so in-character (at least how I picture them) for him to reminisce back to that summer with Dumbledore, and how things changed drastically when Gellert rose to power and Dumbledore had to defeat him.
Overall, very well done and I look forward to reading more of your writing in the future! :)
I'm so pleased that you liked the style I used for this story! It was really inspired by Aph's writing and then grew up from the quote which I was given for the challenge. I wanted it to read almost like a letter, so I'm really happy you thought that! Given how much time Gellert has had to reflect on his past and his relationship with Albus, and all the what-could-have-beens, it made sense for me to use him as the narrator to explore their story together and the way that he felt about what had - or hadn't - happened for the two of them. It was so much fun to write, and so interesting - I love the idea that they have this love-hate relationship, that in a way they hate what the other has done or become, and yet they still love each other from afar, knowing that it can't ever be more than that now, almost loving in spite of who the person is. It's so fascinating to write and I'm so pleased you picked up on the way I was trying to frame their relationship here, and that you enjoyed this story!
Thank you so much for a wonderful review!
The morning the war ended, James dreamt about death.
Hey plums!! Here for 3/4 of your prive reviews! :)
So I love a good AU, and even moreso, I love a good muggle AU! There is literally not much out there about PTSD-type things in HP canon/fanon so this was very cool to read. Also, as James & Lily die in canon during the war, so we don't get to see any repercussions the two of them might have. By setting this in WWI, you get the shell-shock and PTSD that soldiers had from that, but also get the Marauders we know and love. It really gives James dimension by having all of his friends die *ugh its the opposite of canon and makes it that much sadder* and him having to survive the war.
He's only eighteen so he still doesn't quite know who he is as a person or what the war really means or why it's really happening. So him surviving and being a part of the "winning side" of the war and now having to go back to civilian life is something that is a huge disconnect not only for James but also for the other soldiers. Even though there's not much dialogue at all in this piece, it's not necessary because this is such a heavy piece already that dialogue would just weigh it down. Great job on this, Plums! :)
Banner by Otachi @ TDA
Charlie unfolded the letter for the umpteenth time since receiving it. He knew reading it again wouldn't do any good - in fact, it would most likely make him feel worse - but he did it anyway. It was all still too hard to believe.
Hi! Congrats on winning Ravenclaw's July SOTM!! :)
So I've actually been meaning to read more Charlie Weasley-centered fic, so this was perfect to get me started on that. The thing that I loved the most about this piece is your portrayal of Charlie's love for dragons. With his physical actions even more so than his emotional reveals, you've illustrated his nature very well. He goes up and strokes Nehlina's scales and murmurs to her, oh that just makes me feel even more for Charlie and Nehlina in this situation they're in. Your imagery is just beautiful and it really transported me to Romania where the dragon sanctuary is and how its location plays into character actions. You've also done a beautiful job with giving Nehlina the dragon some characterization and feelings about the situation she's in, especially with her collar and the small holding cell she got placed in and in having her egg taken away from her. The final section where Charlie is musing about what it means to be human versus creatures is just breathtaking and very aware. It calls out greedy humans who always follow the money and want to keep proper reputations intact rather than do what's good for the environment and its non-human inhabitants.
Very well done, my dear! I'll definitely be back at some point to read some of your other works! :)
Hope is like a flickering candle. It can be snuffed out, but it can also be relit.
The Christmas Eve before Sirius' escape, an unlikely encounter with two young Aurors drags up memories of a time thought forgotten long ago...
Beautiful banner by @angelic!
Hello again! I'm here with your request from about a month ago over in my thread on HPFT. First of all, the author's note you wrote at the end was extremely touching and appropriate considering the setting of the story and time of year this was posted. It moved me a bit to do my best in these last dregs of the holiday season, so thank you.
You were mainly concerned with the dialogue section and doing more "showing" rather than "telling." I'll begin with the dialogue between Sirius and the two guards. So from an outside perspective, the tone of voice the guards use fits with the setting and general feelings towards Sirius at this point in time. However, I do see where you were concerned with it as it does feel a bit forced and heavy in terms of length of time/words spoken per person. Something that I like to do when I'm getting stuck with dialogue is to read it out loud and mark where I take natural pauses to breathe or just in the phrasing. Then if it cuts up a large paragraph, I can insert a dialogue tag and maybe a body movement or something similar to help break it up further. By giving the speaker something to do besides just talk, the dialogue bits can then be strengthened. With these two Aurors specifically, since they're both so young and new to the job, allowing some of their internal fear and jumpiness at being inside Azkaban to peek through in body language while they speak could make the dialogue less harsh as well. If the transition from playing games with Sirius to serious manner was more fluid and had greater weight, the switch in tone would make more sense. They also begin by being rude to him, and then end by saying they used to look up to him and their siblings as well in Gryffindor, which is an admission that could be given much more weight. This admission of former idolization (if you will) typically doesn't come easy, but could be stoked by Sirius maybe acknowledging their presence in some form (like turning away to face the back wall of the cell) so they get aggravated at his lack of reaction. Otherwise, it feels awkward like you said. If you can re-work it with some of these suggestions then I think the dialogue could be much stronger.
Now as far as the "showing" versus "telling" aspect of this story, I think there's not a whole lot you need to do to it anymore. You do a very good job of describing Sirius's emotions as things are happening in real time and his memories. There is a fine line between telling and showing in describing things in writing, but you've worked on editing this piece and there is honestly not much I would change in regards to that aspect. The closing paragraphs are very well written too and emphasize the point of the whole story in a way that sometimes some character or scene description can't convey. Perhaps I was just more in tune with your message for this story, but I believe your description here fits with the writing style and POV you used.
So really, very well done on this story! While it definitely tugged at my heartstrings, your writing really pulled me in and made me feel a lot more about Sirius Black than I really thought I would. So thank you! Please feel free to pop over to my review thread again sometime if you like! :)
Hey, thanks for the advice! I'll definitly try to edit that dialogue section some more and figure out some way to tweak it. I'm glad to see the telling isn't too big an issue here. I know back on HPFF some people pointed that out as a thing to maybe watch for in this, so it seems the editing worked there. Now I'll have to focus on the other section.
I'm glad you liked it, and thanks again for the solid review and feedback! :D
"They say words can't hurt you, yet they do. Like a thousand hot knives carving each letter into your slowly beating heart."
Banner by me. Nominated for the FROGS for the Depiction of Mental Illness category. Thanks, guys!
For the Phobia challenge: Monophobia, an acute fear of being alone.
Also for the Proverb Challenge: The apple doesn't fall far from the tree.
Hi Kat! I'm here with your requested review from my HPFT thread about a month ago. :)
Your only real concern was the flow of this story as you'd previously done some editing and such on it before posting it to the archives, so I'll focus on that. First though, I did catch a few spelling errors here and there-- primarily it was "your" instead of "you're" and one instance of "heal" instead of "heel". Other than those, your grammar and spelling were spot on! Goodness knows I'd struggle a lot trying to keep all of my you-isms correct.
This is a point of view I'm not super familiar with, but you've done a fantastic job utilizing it here! By writing this from second person POV with Sirius as the character it's meant to emulate, we as the readers get an inside look at Sirius's mind and also the way other people perceive him. The snippets we get from his childhood into his early adult life (because we all know he died young RIP) work extremely well with this POV and keep the flow of the story strong. You draw in the Marauders and also his internal struggle so seamlessly, and that is what really makes this story work. Ending it on such a despairing note allows the readers to extend past this point in his life--Azkaban imprisonment--and hope that his thoughts get brighter once he escapes and finds Harry and the Order of the Phoenix. The endpoint was chosen very well and fits with your style of writing and the theme of this story.
Overall, I think you did a great job with this POV, tense, and the themes you received for the challenges this was entered in. Great job on this piece, your characterization of Sirius will definitely stick with me. Please feel free to pop on over to my thread again for reviews in the future. :)
Thanks for pointing out those errors. I'll edit those out soon. I think it was easier to keep this in second person because I did a origional short story kinda like this for a friend involving depression, and that kinda inspired this after when I first wrote it. I'm glad to see everything else works, because I spent a bit of time on edits. Sometimes I feel bad, because I can only imagine of one of our lovely validator's starts to approve just to see another edit pop up about five minutes later because I caught something else. XD
I'll definitly pop in again. Thank you for your time and feedback!
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Hi Eva! Here for your prize review #2! :)
Okay so first of all, I had to read this twice to fully grasp the story because it's late and I'm sometimes terrible at these things, but boy once I got it did I understand!! It's subtlety and complexity are what make it great, and that's why it's good to make people re-read it to make sure they can personally understand it. A lot of times Lily gets portrayed as the "golden girl" who can do and say no wrong, and who is loved for her continued denials of James' romantic overtures. This completely shatters that preconceived notion people have of her, and I am SO here for it. This characterization of Lily allows for her to have flaws, and some serious ones at that, as racism is not something explicitly talked about in fandom for the Marauders generation.
What I love that you've done here too is made Lily flawed in an actual, human way with her racist comment towards James. She tries to rationalize it as a slip of the tongue, by counterbalancing it with all of the good things she does all of the time otherwise. Her need to justify her one "bad" behavior speaks volumes about how racism is seen in lots of people today, which is quite a potent thing to think about and unpack. Her own mental fight on whether or not she is able to admit wrongdoing by calling him that slur and how torn she gets over it is so well written, even with the shortness of the piece. I think because it's so short, it also emphasizes how something so small, like calling someone a racial slur can impact them and the person saying it in such a large way. Very well done with this piece and characterization of Lily here, Eva! :)
Hey Madi! <3
Oooh, yes. Sorry about that! A lot of people have mentioned that they had to read it twice to understand it, and though I intended for it to be somewhat ambiguous at first I didn't mean for you guys to have to go through it again. At least it's not too long, though? Anyway. I'm so happy you liked this characterization of Lily! I have nothing against the usual characterization of her, I swear, but this popped into my head and I was like "oh this might be fun!"
Yeahhh hahaha I've seen too much of Lily-ness going on in everyday life these days, and I'm so happy you thought to point that out! Like, people who've done good things who're also racist. The goodness doesn't stop them from being racist, that's not how humanity works lmao. But the slur is something that can't really be avoided as evidence (though how do you talk to someone who tries to pretend that saying slurs don't necessarily mean they're racist?) and so she's wrestling with herself haha.
Thank you for such a lovely review! <3
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Four lives Astoria saved. And then the fifth.
Hi Eva!! Here with the first of your prize reviews!! :)
Okay so, wow. This is a PHENOMENAL piece! You've taken part of canon that definitely was not written about explicitly by JKR and really expanded what it was like at Hogwarts with the Carrows while the Trio was off in the woods. Not only that, but you've written it from the perspective of a student on the "winning" side at the time, and an often overlooked character at that in Astoria Greengrass. What I also love that you've done with her character is made her not quite sympathetic, but still someone who we want to root for and who we want to continue fighting for the right thing, even in secret. I also really enjoyed how you set this up in the 4 + 1 format, with her saving four lives and the fifth being hers saved. It really provides depth to her character here because of the very different situations she finds herself in and how she has to think about saving the different students. The choice of characters that Astoria saves is also very well done and I think completely intentional. The story is written in a way where the situation escalates in danger and tension for both Astoria and the people she's trying to save. Starting with Michael Corner in a low-level situation, then moving to Lavender Brown's torture was a very good introduction to Astoria's personality and what her goal is regarding her fellow students, regardless of House or alignment in the War.
Moving on to a much larger, more volatile situation with Neville protecting the first/second year students on their way to classes from Nott and Crabbe was a very well written scene. You had multiple characters involved, including background ones (the younger students) and you managed to convey the four main participants' actions and thoughts so well! Astoria really gets the chance to think on her feet here because she now has witnesses to deal with directly, so she must be more inconspicuous with her assistance to Neville and his students. The same type of situation with Pansy and Susan Bones next almost requires more finesse because she knows Pansy well, whereas with Nott and Crabbe, they are much too arrogant and don't take time to think it through before agreeing to go along with her plan.
That last one, though. Just wow. I honestly had my hand covering my mouth the entire time I was reading that scene because it just kept getting worse and worse for Astoria, and also for Ginny. Just imagining what the girls were going through, as you alluded to, was the most horriyfing thing that happened in this story, as it well should be. The last few paragraphs where Astoria is lying in her bed in her dormitory thinking about what happeneed a few hours earlier with Amycus and Ginny, was some of the most truthful, painful writing about the Imperius curse I've ever read. It's truly eye-opening when you expand that view to the rest of HP canon and all of the times it got used then, and also back in the First Wizarding War, with how often it was used then as an excuse for people's actions, when it very well was also likely used as a punishment.
Honestly, this is one of the best stories about this time at Hogwarts during the Second War that I've ever read, and not just because it's something not always written about. The content provides details about how maybe not all of the Slytherins were for Voldemort, and how the power the Carrow twins had over the school was likely abused in multiple, horrible ways. It's a provocative callout about the Unforgivable curses and what some of their less-common and more-awful uses can be. This was such a phenomenal read, and I am definitely happy you had me select this as one of your prize reviews because holy crap was this good--heartbreaking, but good. I look forward to reading some of your other pieces as well, Eva!
Hi Madi! <3
You are honestly way too kind; the entire time I was reading your review I was a mess of hearts and giggles and thank-yous. *sobs* But yes, I've always loved the idea of this mysterious Astoria Greengrass, of whom we know pretty much nothing, and so to fit her into the HP world, right smack in the middle of the conflict that's going on, was one of my favorite things to do! I'm just so happy that people seem to like this story almost as much as I had fun writing it. And yeah, you're definitely right; I didn't want to leap headfirst into the dramatic, horrific scenes so I tried easing you guys in a little bit with the first two lives haha.
Ahh thank you!! I'm so glad that you liked the scenes featuring Neville and Susan; Astoria being quickthinking was actually so hard to write omfg (I am not quickthinking nor am I clever ahaha). I totally agree with you, though, that the scenes with Neville and Susan required different forms of subterfuge where she had to act the entire time like she was on their side, while sneakily helping out the "other" side. Pansy is actually one of the most intriguing characters to me, not gonna lie, largely due to her cowardice, so it was a lot of fun writing her being horrible haha.
I'm conflicted because I'm glad that you had a strong emotional response to it but also I feel sorry in case it affected you a lot! But yes, the two girls went through something horrible and traumatic, and though they remained physically unscathed, this moment was probably the worst part of the war for both of them. And I'm really glad you liked the talk about the Imperius Curse! It always bothered me a little how easily it was used in canon because, I mean, having literally no control over your limbs? Terrifying.
I am so so happy that you liked it; your review was so good and so kind and it still makes me feel happy even now. Thank you so so much! <3
If Severus successfully completed his apprenticeship, he'd get the opportunity to earn a title for himself. A Master. Prequel to 'Until We Close Our Eyes For Good'.
For Saphhicsunrise's "The Vocational Challenge"
Hello again Pix, here for 4/5 prize reviews! :)
Alrighty so I'm not one who usually likes to read about Snape but I actually quite enjoyed this piece for him! So I'm a chemistry major and I just LOVE anything that's written when a huge focus of it is on Potions because that's essentially what I want to do for a career, ya know? An apprenticeship under a Potions Master is something I never really thought about for Snape, mostly because I've never really thought about what he did between the end of the first War and when he started teaching at Hogwarts. I think it's a nice interlude for those times and makes a lot of sense! The parallel between the flobberworm essence at the beginning and then cycling back to it at the end was nicely done. It emphasizes the sometimes unrealistic expectations people have when they exit school and what kind of job they'll then have right away -- idealizing to quickly leads to disappointment when your first job isn't everything it's cracked up to be, and that's a life lesson that I think everyone should learn. It means people, in this case Severus, can grow and understand how it is that you get to a certain stage and get respect -- hard work, perserverance, and time. I like the differences between Snape and his materials and the Flaversham guy's demeanor and materials -- it's a nice reminder that money can't always win and be the best, which is refreshing in this day and age. Well done, Pix! :)
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A sweet monster who feeds on happiness lives beneath the surface of Dolor Lake.
A story about the depression that follows a happy manic.
2018 MFWHATA Winner -- "Most Deadly Fangs" [Best Dark/Horror]
July 2018 Sitewide Story of the Month
So this piece deals with depression in an unnamed original character and is written in the second person point of view. By writing it in second person POV, you've already created a huge challenge for yourself, but it also provides a different perspective than we, as readers, might get if it was in third or first person. By using the "you" it appears to be talking about us as readers, being dragged down into the deep pool of darkness. Your skill with description is evident as I truly felt like I could hear the sound of hands hitting wet clay and the visual of losing color and going to grayscale is phenomenal. The metaphor of the whole piece of the monster hiding in the depths of a dark, cool, lake until you realize what it really is and you break as a representation of how depression can manifest is just brilliant. It's a very good way of illustrating how it is different for everyone but also how it may be for some. Honestly, just so well done and I look forward to reading more of your works.
I really enjoy writing in second-person...it's really just about what feeling I want to project in the story when I choose perspective. Not only did I use you to affect the readers, but I also used it to distance myself away from the content (if that makes sense). <3 I'm glad you enjoyed the descriptions! I really enjoy playing with dark imagery.
THanks so much, Madi <3333
Hello hello hello plums! I'm finally getting to everyone's entries for my Soulmate AU challenge so here I am! :)
First of all, I just wanted to say that I originally read this on AO3 as the monster one-shot you had it in before breaking it up for HPFT, so it was a truly immersive reading experience. :P I did a quick read-through here to see where you had the chapter breaks, and I think they work well and served their purpose to split up James's experiences with Lily from beginning to end. I’ve not seen much with how James and Lily get together (oops I haven’t read fic in FOREVER…) so this was super refreshing! You worked with your soulmate prompt (tattoo of first words) extremely well, even drawing in Remus & Sirius (which I loved!) and their first meeting. Your random prompt (“Please put me down it’s just a sprained ankle.”) also fit wonderfully with your ice skating/ice hockey theme. I can confirm my ankles hurt anytime that I go skating for fun, so I can only imagine how painful it can actually get for those who do it for sport or professionally! You also made that moment into a pleasant and light-hearted piggyback ride to the school health center, which I thought was cute and totally fit their characterizations.
Backtracking a bit to the first section, the backstory for James & Sirius was absolutely fitting. The opening line of the fic had me hooked right away with laughter and an interest to see how James’ position to hit Sirius with a puck would coordinate with meeting Lily. Seeing how James & Sirius meet at pre-school and their toddler interactions was cute and some of the best writing of that age group I’ve seen in a while! Reading about their progression through school and friendship was very nice and a solid segue to James developing his love of ice hockey alongside casually dating Mary before going to university. The boys’ bickering reminds me of many of my male friends when they’re together, so I can appreciate the banter all the more for that. Once Lily says the line that James has tattooed on his arm and Sirius busts out into hysterical laughter, I really got behind your story. Through the rough, angsty middle section, you really allowed for James and Lily’s characters to gain some serious depth and dimensions to them to keep us enticed with their not-quite-yet love story.
Overall, I truly enjoyed this piece and the significance with which you placed the random prompt quote within the story to serve as a turning point for how Lily sees James. The writing in general was fantastic and scenes flowed smoothly from one to another. Characterizations of James, Lily, Sirius, Remus, and the elder Potters were all great and matched each other very well. Great piece, and I’ll be posting challenge results later. Well done! :)
Winner of 2017 POGS joint Best Novel and Best Original Character
Winner of 2015 Dobby Award for Most Original Fic
Neville and Hannah's daughter, Wren Longbottom, gets uprooted from the only home she's ever known. While settling in to her new home at the Leaky Cauldron Inn, she meets someone who takes all her worries away. But when her new best friend in the whole world befriends the world's worst nightmare, will she have the heart to let him die?
Hi Pix, here for 5/5 prize reviews and let me just apologize in advance for how long this is going to be.
Alrighty then. So I love Wren Longbottom right off the bat -- she's a very perfect mixture of her parents Neville and Hannah, and I just love that. She's tender and caring for animals and plants alike so I KNOW she's a great friend to the whole Weasley-Potter + Scorpius crew. The flashing bunny thing at the beginning didn't really register with me until later when Wren and the bunny are practically inseparable and it bites her all of time. ALBUS AND SCORPIuS BLESS THEM. They're the two best friends ever and have such a great dynamic. The relationship between James and Albus, however, seems like it took a dark turn for some reason after James turned seventeen, but we really don't get an explanation as to why. I get the whole siblings prank each other thing, but james takes it very far past the line, and I honestly don't know how Harry & Ginny don't know about all of the crap James and Albus do to each other (but mostly to Albus). I really like how you came up with the anti-jinx armbands & charms etc -- ingenious way of doing things + in conjunction with the constant stealing back and forth of the Marauders Map. I was cautious immediately of Dillon right off the bat, especially with how the bunny bit Wren and she instantly said she'd take care of it. I WAS ONTO HIM FROM THE START! But obviously had no idea what he was until you got to the new History of Magic professor and started talking about vampires and then it was like a lightbulb went off. I also had early suspicions too about Nate, but he just felt very suspicious to me--obviously he's totally fine, it was just the uncle to worry about. :P
You've done an amazing job weaving this story together with all of its threads to a culmination point that doesn't exactly jump out at you nor is easy to see way off in the distance, but rather approaches steadily with a twist for good measure. I really like the detail you put into this piece with everyone's threads, not just Wren's main storyline. I'd love to see more in the future with Wren & Nate's friendship and just generally speaking more of their final year at Hogwarts and after that as well. Honestly Pix, you could do like a whole series with these characters and I'd read it all. Well done :)
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Alba Williamson is a cross-word loving Ravenclaw in her seventh year at Hogwarts. Pity is her nemisis, and pride is her guiding light. Determined to keep her head up through thick and thin, she struggles with the challenges of cerebral palsy. Though her best friend James helps as much as he can, things are sure to change with the Triwizard Tournament right around the corner.
Hey hey! I'm here for BvB on Team BRONZE and also because I've been meaning to read this properly for AGES! :)
Okay so first of all, I LOVE that this is next-gen with James Potter being the best friend of your character Alba because often times next-gen focuses on Albus beign best friends with someone, so I'm happy to see lots of James interactions that'll be happening! Furthermore, I already love Alba so much. She's so well written and I'm very excited to see how you go with her because she's got so many different facets to herself besides her intelligence, friendship with James, and her disability. Speaking of which, I'm very curious to see how you work her cerebral palsy further into the story and her time at Hogwarts. One of my classmates in high school had CP and while she didn't need crutches to walk, she did have ankle braces and it definitely took her a lot longer to get around places, but she was (is) smart as hell so I'm happy to see you've created Alba in a similar manner. Her disability does not define her, as you've clearly illustrated already within the first train scene and with getting to the carriages as well.
Honestly I'm just loving this so much already and I can't wait to see what happens next! :)
Okay hi again here for BvB Team Bronze! :)
I'm very curious to see how you delve more into Alba's use of Strengthening Solution, Pain Philter, and how she does physical therapy now that she has to wait for her cut to heal. James's feelings towards her injury and his immediate pain over her very public escorting from the Great Hall during the feast is something I'd love to see the two of them unpack sometime, but clearly it wasn't going to happen during this chapter because he was too late to meet her at Ravenclaw tower. Bring on the jealousy and pain because I am here for it! I love Benjamin Honeypucker and his relationship with Alba too -- he also doesn't pity her for having CP but also doesn't let that stop him from 'helping' her up the stairs and having a good time with her while at it. I hope they develop better as friends because he just seems like a really great guy. I am curious too about Chandra and what her deal is with not only Alba but also her issues from the carriage maybe getting dirty from the mud on that first night. I'll be back shortly for chapter 3! :)
Once again for BvB Team Bronze! :)
Alrighty so Maude seems like she is very observant but also not at the same time, and also knows routines fairly well (regarding Alba at least) so I'm curious to see how she interacts with Alba later on in various other settings like studying and the like for NEWTS. The breakfast scene is SO WELL WRITTEN!!! It's done in a way that truly makes it feel realistic and applicable in real life situations and James being concerned about the well-being of his best friend. Also, the interruptions by Ben were priceless and true to his character. Even the asking her out again for the umpteenth time and brushing her rejection off was fun. I do hope these two have a future or something, I just NEED something!!! The interactions that Alba has with Nurse Wainscott are nice and honestly refreshing -- we don't see much about the Hospital Wing or students that could be regular visitors there in canon, so I love seeing your expansion of it here. Okay now what is with that wink that James throws at Alba outside the Great Hall!??! What is he going to do?!? Onward I go to find out!
Hello again! :) Here for BvB Team Bronze!
ALRIGHTY THEN LETS GET THIS TRIWIZARD TOURNAMENT SHOW ON THE ROAD!!! I loved the bit with the Potters and the bouillabaisse during dinner because that just speaks to classic teenage boy eating habits to me and us girls being like, uh no thanks, that's disgusting. Durmstrang is here, woohoo! AND YOU HAD GIRLS COME TOO THANK YOU OMG I hated that they did the gender separation in the GOF movie, let me tell you. I also quite enjoy that you had Viktor Krum be there as a Guide and Arithmancy Professor of Durmstrang -- it really gives him depth besides being a former world-class Quidditch player and Tournament champion, so nice work there! I'm curious to see if there's anything to why the Durmstrang Headmaster didn't come along. Ahhh now I see what Chandra's deal with the mud was -- very well portrayed here and explained in a neutral way too by Albus, which I really appreciate. We often throw around "OCD" and "bipolar" in common vernacular and we really shouldn't, so I appreciate the time you took to make it not only realistic but also not talked about in the way we tend to do as a society. Okay, bless Nurse Wainscott trying to play matchmaker for her favorite charge. I'm curious to see if you start the next chapter with the Beauxbatons arrival or not so I'm off to that! :)