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WriteYourHeartOut

Squee-Worthy Reviews!

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forever_dreaming
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OMG. This was so good. Just kill me now. And I just loved Neville's guilt, and fear: "I don't like hospital food."
"I don't like hospital food." So poignant, so . . . "I don't like hospital food."

You're side of it, I never thought of it that way. How Neville could be so afraid of the Cruciatus curse, and I feel stupid because of that.
And Seamus .... Lord give me strength. THERE ARE TEARS IN MY EYES.

And Neville's half-assed letters. "Dear Seamus, I'm a ...." Just ... I really liked it.

And Neville's children. I like how you imagine the and their REACTIONS. Like, can I, can I cry? (I'm already doing it)

This is A MASTERPIECE!

And I've read "The Things they Carried." Thank you. Please continue this fic, so I can cry some more.

I got this from RisaKap at AO3 a couple days ago! :) Aside from the whole masterpiece comment, which was like WOW. Really? :wub:, I loved that the reviewer picked up on some of the most important parts of the fic, imo, because I was very concerned that it wasn't that coherent? So to know that I'd clearly developed my idea and left an emotional impact was really exciting. :D 

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Crimson Quill

So, I've been getting some amazing reviews for Parisian Scars. I'm overwhelmed with some of the comments (& comments that I never thought people would ever say about my writing) . I guess I wanted to show how much it means to me!! Some ones that really stand out and basically had me in tears! 

from forever_dreaming

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This whole fic, to me, is a masterpiece in description and emotion. You were able to accurately portray all of these emotions without being over the top, which to me is stunning. Well done!! ❤️

from Claire Evergreen

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this is absolutely amazing. I'm a complete sucker for a really well done Lavender/Parvati story and this is one of those by a mile. I honestly don't believe that you don't write angst very much because this is some of the best I've ever read.

from Felpata Lupin

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Your writing was just stunning in this! So heartfelt and strong and addictive! You really are talented, such a wonderful job! I'm so impressed!

from AbraxanUnicorn

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I absolutely adore the succinct clarity of this story and how evocative  your writing is. It's such a gorgeous piece, and I think it is my favourite out of all of your stories that I've read.

 

Thank you so much for everyone who supported this story & love you all!

 

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BellaLestrange87

I've been really bad at checking my reviews on the archive lately :ninja: but I finally did and this one from Penelope Inkwell on Of Balls and Blood Status made my day:

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Right after breakfast was Transfiguration,, which they had with the Slytherins, mainly for dramatic purposes to stir up tension.

--it's so hard to choose, but this is the standout for my favorite line.

THE SNARK!  BAhahahaha!

So I saw your story on the September Featured Stories list on HPFT and I wanted to come check it out.  As soon as I saw that it was a parody, I was in.  And OH my gosh, can I just say - I got up on the wrong side of the bed this morning, work has been a pain, and I have been in a Bad Mood all day, till I stumbled across this on my lunch break.  But I feel so much better now?  This made me laugh and just kind of launched me into a better mood :)  I have high hopes that my day is going to turn around, and this is definitely part of that.  So first of all, just, thank you for making me laugh.  I sooo needed it.

So, I'll admit it, it's true - I am a Dramione fan.  And, as such, I have suffered through a great many, erm, shall we say "less developed" stories featuring so many of the tropes you've mentioned in this, so I spent the whole time in stitches because it's all so true so much of the time.  I love those slow burns that you mention but, alas, all too often we do have all of the above instead.  Ugh, and the "Hermione is secretly a Pureblood" trope--I'm so glad that you worked that one in because that is the worst!

Oh my gosh, just everything - school events being announced in the Daily Prophet, Harry and Ron mysteriously and conveniently disappearing, school events that make very little sense in the greater context and are clearly only in the story to create a ~dramatic romantic moment~ .  This was so amusing and I just had a great time reading it :').  Thanks again!

 

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Stella Blue

I received a number of lovely reviews on Icarus from Dojh167, forever_dreaming, and just.a.willow.tree during the winter wonderland (thank you all :wub: ), and as I'm finally making my way through responding to them I just can't stop re-reading this particularly lovely one (from @forever_dreaming). It's such an insightful review, and the amount of thought and analysis she's putting into the chapter and into the story as a whole just blows me away.  Thank you Shreya :wub:

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Not gonna lie, I’m a pretty big fan of bad puns so this chapter summary excited me a little hahaha :D

 

I loved that the atrium in the Ministry has a Sphinx in the fountain and not House Elves or centaurs; I know that the latter has always been perceived as a way of asserting wizardkind’s dominance, and to me, the Sphinx seems like a symbol of curiosity and questioning and definitely not dominance because puny wizards could easily get crushed by a freaking giant lion-cat-whatever creature. I think this was a really cool choice! I also really liked the two lines for Muggles and wizards—and found it curious that Lily didn’t like it! I could understand why she liked the Sphinx because she has sort of a social-justice-bent (or perhaps I’m projecting myself on her?) but that is curious to me. I like this alternate world that you’ve built where the Wizarding World actually seems to have progressed so much more. Where it actually has progressed remains to be seen, though.

 

So this was actually a rather emotional chapter to read, probably because we started to see how Lily’s relationships have changed as a consequence of the alternate universe. I loved how each character’s alternate life still srawns upon fundamental parts of their personality—like, James as working in the Department of Magical Sports and Games really does make sense given his prankster personality, and on a sadder note, it’s not too surprising that Marta ends up getting into a bad situation. That especially was so sad to read because it seems like her mischief and tendency to get into bad situations has now become a true vice for her. 

 

That leads me to my next point. I really like the tonal shift that happened in this chapter, sort of starting in the previous chapter. I can see a little more seriousness, still balanced with a fair amount of humor, but now I feel kind of guilty for laughing? Like Lily’s last comment to Marta made me laugh—but also made me sad because I could see how desperate she was to convince Marta to be friends with her. 

 

This chapter really delved into what I can already tell is one of the central questions of the work, the question of who we would be if something went different, and how much we are shaped by our environment. As far as I can tell, Lance’s personality and Marta’s personality are not so wholly different in the alternate universe than in Lily’s universe—it seems like only their situations have changed. But I have to wonder what effect this change in situation would have on other characters. For example, Harry: he probably grew up with James and Lily, so his personality may be completely different as a result. 

 

There are lots of other things I want to mention but I’m cutting it off here so I can keep reading. I just wanted to say on a closing note that I appreciate the complexity of thought put into imagining this new alternate universe because it isn’t completely baseless, being pulled out of thin air; I love how you’re taking existing qualities of the Wizarding World and of the characters and warping them into something not familiar—different but recognizable at the same time. This is such a creative story and I’m really glad I finally started reading it, because it is such a compelling story too! 

 

Wonderful chapter, as always <3 

 

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Shadowkat678

Gotta choose this one from Words and Silences that @Pixileanin wrote. They took a long time on this, and the sheer length makes me pretty happy. Longest I've received yet, and let's face it. We all love big reviews. xD 

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Hi!  I apologize for the delay of this review, but I'm here now. Let's get to it!

Our fics have a lot in common, but then when you're writing  a “Sirius stuck in Azkaban reflecting on his life while the Dementors suck away at his soul” piece, there are bound to be similarities, right? :)  I'm sure that many authors have explored this same subject.  I wonder what we would encounter if we sat down and put all of them together in a big collection.  Probably a lot of tears and agony, I'd guess.  

The way you framed the story for each challenge was great.  Sirius’ phobia of being alone came through loud and clear, with the recurring echoes of the conflicting theme of wanting to escape the ties to his family.  I love how your two focal points of this fic clash with each other.  It makes for a strong emotional ride. Sirius needs people, but wants nothing to do with the people that he is closest to.  When he leaves them, he has all kinds of niggling fears about not being accepted anywhere else.  It puts his character’s show of bravado into clear perspective. Like he's saying, “No, I'm good.  I can handle whatever you throw at me.  I'm strong enough to deal with my secrets alone, and I don't really NEED anyone to comfort me.”

But we know he does.  Part of the way you portrayed his fear was in his constant reluctance to let people see his weaknesses.  It's that very human trait in all of us: thinking that other people will reject us if they see us at our worst.  This makes your Sirius highly relatable.  I'm sure we've all been there.  The hug from James was a poignant moment.

The small light you give him when he realizes that his friends are really true friends is a much needed lift.  It comes at just the right time, that glimmer of hope for him, and a much needed anticipation for the reader that things may not be all that bad.  This gives him the strength he needs to make that final break with his family, and he takes it.

The way he lashes out at Snape when his friend is in jeopardy, I think you made his reasoning for this very understandable.  It hints at wanting to protect his friend, but we all know how wrong it was, on the grander scale.  The poor guy just wasn't thinking rationally.  It's when his emotions get him into big trouble, and he pays for it.  I especially like how you put his relationship with Remus into jeopardy after he told Snape about the secret.  It.puts him into a tailspin of doubt, his focal point of failure, and gosh, it affects them for a long, long while.  Sirius realizes that he's hurt the people closest to him, and they have every reason to reject him now.

That's a fantastic moment for him to obsess over when he's alone and at his worst.  I can see how he would think on it over again and again, convincing himself that he's not worthy, that he's never going to escape who he was born to be, and that everything he tried to do that was good in the world failed because of some wicked fate that he could never escape what he was meant to be.  

I like how your writing has that obsessive repetition of words, the way someone would just think and think in circles.  It's like he's pacing in his cell, the mental version of being trapped.  You pull that off so well.  Also, the circular nature of the fic lets us get that feeling that he's going to torture himself over and over with all of these thoughts.  He's going to relive these moments over and over and be bitter and alone and afraid.  And the worst part will be that he thinks he deserves all of this.

Really well done here.  I think you've nailed this.

Pix

 

A few other honorable mentions:

@manno-malfoy on Cost of Redemption:

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Hello, I'm here for the winter wonderland event.

I always anticipate so much heartbreak when I'm going to read a story about Regulus. But this was perhaps the most brutal out of all the ones I read. Never have I read one where he was on the battlefield, all these realisations and conflicts hitting him and confusing him. I especially appreciated the scene where he started to vomit when a body was blasted near him. It's so, so easy to forget sometimes that these characters were forced to fight a war that's so much bigger than them at such a young age. And while this is the prime age by being indoctrinated by agendas and promises of power and glory, it doesn't change the fact that they're too young for such a burden. And this detail might seem too trivial, but it spoke volumes to me about how Regulus was taken by how this was too much for him to take.

Your writing style is beautiful. It's flows so smoothly but also grim enough to suit the theme of the story. So well done with that!

I think that as long as you have sympathy, there is always hope. If the pain someone is experiencing can have an effect on you, you still have a chance to make progress towards maybe, someday, taking action to save them or at least attempt to alleviate their pain. Which is why I'm looking forward to see what you have in store for Regulus's journey to redemption.

 

And last to not make this too long, @LadyL8's lovely review on Brother's Blood. :D

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Hey Kat,

It's me again. I'm still here for the Winter Wonderland Event. And you know what, I think remember this story! It's the Albus/Gellert story, right?! I'm pretty sure I'm right. I remember I loved this one. It was one of my favourite short one-shots if I recall correctly, and it was just one that I thought about long after I read it. Yeah, I definitely remember this, and I just can't wait to read it again. So yeah, let's stop talking and get right to it.

Omg. Yes! It is the Albus/Gellert story! And it's in second person's perspective! I couldn't remember that, but I absolutely love it. It's probably my all-time favourite perspectives because if it's done right, it has such a powerful effect. It really makes it feel like the reader is a part of the story, and I absolutely love that. It's not an easy perspective to pull off though, but you absolutely nailed it. It was perfect. Really, really perfect! I loved it!

I love how the narrator is almost telling Albus off, and because of the perspective, it kind of feels like we are too. I'm not the biggest Albus fan, so I have to admit that I really liked that :P But yeah, I felt like I could almost feel the anger/resentment in the tone of the story, but surprisingly enough, it kind of made me understand Albus better too. He was stupid in some ways, falling for Gellert and only realizing too late what Gellert really was doing to his family and to the wizarding world. And it was interesting to see you connect that to what later happened to Voldemort. I had never thought about that before, but in a way he does make the same mistake, not the falling in love part of course, but he believes he can change things and doesn't realize until too late that he can't; he fails to see what Voldemort really is like, just like he failed to see what Gellert was like. I had never thought about that before, but that was a really cool connection. Just very interesting.

I'm really impressed by how much you got across in about 500 words. If I remember correctly this was for the "Every Word Counts Challenge", and that is actually one of my all-time favourite challenges because it really challenges the writers and the results almost always ended up being the author's best work. This was no exception to that. I absolutely loved it. You really nailed it. I really felt like I could understand Albus better, and you're writing is just flawless. I love the tone and the flow of the story! Just amazing. Great job! :D

-       Lotte

 

 

Edited by Shadowkat678
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Veritaserum27

I got this little gem on my AO3 account.  I'm just smiling like an idiot at the fact that someone searched so long and hard to find my story! (spoiler tags used by me because the reviewer mentions quite a few plot twists :P)

 

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All in all, I just wrote a super huge review back in HPFF and accidentally pressed refresh and everything disappeared... Then I wrote a second review and found out that reviews are disabled... Then I tried to find you as an author in HPFF, but all I saw were dead-ends. Then I googled your nickname and finally found you here! (Yey!!) And I see that my only question of where you'll be headed after HPFF is answered! (Double-Yey!!) But anyway... wanted to express my deepest gratitude for this story, which has been one of the most realistic and down-to-earth and with a cool, intrigue-filled plot and deep joy and deep sadness, all in one. It's one of my favourites for sure! And it's because it makes me excited (for example, when a new clue is unlocked in Scorpius' parents mistery), sad

Spoiler

(you cannot imagine how sad I felt when Selenia died)

, frustrated

Spoiler

(when Scorpius withdrew in himself during the last months of Rose's pregnancy)

, deeply rattled

Spoiler

(when you describe how bored and left out Rose feels when sitting home alone with her baby)

. In short - super cool story and I would be extremely happy to see the end of it :) Thank you for this!

 

 

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ShadowRose

I just woke up to this little gem on my FF.net account, and it just... asdfghjkl;  :wub:

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Oh my god, I can't even... this story is SO AMAZING! I just spent like half the day reading this instead of doing the like 18 other things I should be doing because I just couldn't put it down! There's so much I adore in it that there's no way I'll get it all down, but I'll give you some things I absolutely love.

1. Abby is so realistic. That's possibly my favorite part. She's a wonderful narrator, and the reader sees that she's not perfect but she's human and we love her. It would be so easy to make her into a character that the reader hates from where she starts, but even in the early chapters, I didn't dislike her. She was self-aware, and trying to create the life that she thought she should have and would make her happy. And she changes and develops, and it doesn't feel forced or unnatural at all. Which leads me to... 
2. The development of her relationship with James feels natural. So often I feel like it's way too forced or rushed or back and forth and I get sick of it, but this is so good on every level. I adore it. And James has a personality of his own - he's not just some one-dimensional ideal boy, or some ridiculous prankster. Sure he's cute and funny, but he also has struggles and insecurities, and you make him feel like a real person, especially the more that Abby gets to know him.
3. Your side characters and OC are amazing and perfect. They're so well developed that despite having a huge cast, I know who all of them are and they all feel like real, fully developed people to me. The fact that I can keep all of them and their relationships and backgrounds straight despite the number of them is a testament to your writing and world building abilities.
4. I LOVE that Abby and James aren't sure what they want out of life and are trying to figure it out. That's what most 17/18 year olds are like. (Also, props for having careers that aren't just quidditch player/auror/healer)
5. One of my very favorite things are the female friendships in this. I basically can't read stories anymore that don't have well developed female friendships. Nobody has time for that. But from the very start you had me sold. First with the Royals, and then Dom (and Amelie and Molly), and Caroline. I cannot emphasize enough how much I appreciate how fully you've developed their friendships, and that we see them create these relationships and develop them (and even when they're destroyed, it feels real, and you don't feel like it's overdone or that it's just being brushed off). 

I just...! I cannot say enough good things about this. I LOVE it! Thank you so much for posting, and I'm SO glad I finally read this!

 

 

And then there's this one from the HPFT Archives that just... it's probably the best compliment I could've received on this story?

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Abby has got to be one of my favourite OCs ever. She sort of reminds me of Blair Waldorf, but if Blair had actually learned from all her mistakes. Abby has grown so much throughout this story and I can’t wait to see where she goes next. 

 

 

So all in all, I'm a squee-ing mess this morning. :loveshower:

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just.a.willow.tree

Okay okay so my poem ("an absence of sound") just got validated, and @forever_dreaming (who is an absolute angel) left me this beautiful review, and she understood everything on such a personal level that I was just so emotional reading this :wub: thank you Shreya <3

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Hi Eva <3 I decided I’d end the tortuous wait for you and finally let you know what I thought of this poem (spoiler alert: I loved it. It might be one of my favorite poems I’ve ever read, honestly—and as you know, I read a lot of poetry!).

This poem made me emotional because it really echoed my experience as an immigrant in America (which I’m sure is similar to your experience and the experience of many other immigrants). I’ve always felt that I have a tenuous connection to India, where it is irrevocably a part of me and still fading constantly. I loved the omission of letters as a depiction of that process, where only pieces of my history remain and I’m left to try to make sense of it all. From the first stanza, I felt that you really echoed this sentiment, describing how the memory, the ancestry, the connection is “there just there right there” yet at the same time it’s just “translucent wisps”.

Because I moved to America when I was really young, I’ve always felt like every day, I lose my connection to India. I watch Bollywood films to remind myself of this beautiful part of myself that seems to fade away every day. The phrasing “translucent wisps” really feels like such an accurate depiction of that feeling. That’s also why the line “when a tongue loses its mind and its memory and its heart” struck me so much, because I feel like that’s what’s happening to me. Nowadays, I have to watch Bollywood films with English subtitles because the words have become unfamiliar. My tongue has lost that memory; I’m shy when I speak Hindi because the words don’t sound right. I never thought I’d sound like a white person trying to speak Hindi, but that’s exactly what it feels like; I’ve never experienced a sense of displacement that strong before. 

I think one thing about Indian and Chinese cultures is the foundation and emphasis on family as the central unit in a person’s life. I don’t know if you’ve ever felt this way, but I feel so distanced from my family in India, like they’re actually complete strangers to me; the line “who are you when you cannot understand your family” made me so emotional. My family now feels more like a set of strangers to me, people that I have vague recollections of, but no real connection to, and it’s a little heartbreaking. The simplicity of that statement really emphasized how heartbreaking this feeling is. 

When i I read the last two stanzas, I considered my own silence about my experience as an Indian immigrant. My Hindi voice has been shut away for so long, so the speaker questioning why they don’t say anything really struck me. But in another sense, the line “why do you not speak it” also made me think about why I don’t tell other people about what it’s like to be an immigrant. Why I speak softly because even now, I’m hesitant about my spoken English (I hate saying words that start with “w” and “v”; my tongue wasn’t shaped to say those letters). 

I also thought of those stanzas from a historical perspective too, which is why I imagine this must’ve been really personal for you too. I thought of how Chinese immigrants coming to America were also initially silent—not only in being quiet, but also hiding their identities and their histories. And then I thought about Chinese immigrants working on the railroads, of all the deaths (this is where it being Asian Pacific-American Heritage month really influenced my reading). The omission of some letters now feels like an aftereffect of the dynamite, blasting away pieces of their histories, their identities. 

My favorite stanza is easily the last one though. It is simple and raw; I’m awestruck by your vulnerability in this piece, because I know it’s not easy to leave so much bare—especially with our tradition of silence. Reading this from a personal and historical perspective, I have so much to think about and feel. This did exactly what any good poem should do; it took a feeling that’s always felt so intangible and invisible and made it tangible and comprehensible. Thank you so much for writing such a wonderful piece. <3 

P.S. I don’t know if I mentioned this to you before, but you should really read Maxine Hong Kingston’s “The Woman Warrior.” This piece reminded me a bit of it, and I think it’ll really touch you. 

P.P.S. I hope my review was worth the wait? :P

<3

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teh tarik

In the past year I've received some pretty amazing squee-worthy comments for my fics from AO3.

Most recently, from allypsis for my fic The House and the Sea

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This was the most amazing fic. I had been a little nervous to dip my toes into the Siren fic pond, but I'm glad my first was such a wonderful raddie fic. You really understand this pairing. "It would have been easy to say yes. But Maddie tried patience instead."<--That right there, that is what has made the emotional bonding between Ryn and Maddie develop so beautifully, and you captured it, and Maddie's essence, in two sentences.

I also loved the way you included scenes between Maddie and her father and Maddie and Helen. I just love this fic. Thank you so much for writing it.

 

 

From MimeticEternity on my fic, The King & M'Baku

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This fic is absolutely *stunning*. I started reading it a couple of days ago, and then I finished it yesterday, and I came back today to comment.

The characterization is absolutely *flawless*, especially with M'Baku. What I appreciated the most was how beautifully you captured his wit, intelligence, and that blessed humor.

 

"M’Baku gestured at his king on the cart. “Look, great Hanuman. I found him in the river - the King of Cats. He drowns like one too.” "-> this is the exact moment I knew I was going to absolutely love this fic, and that I had found something special. I literally barked with laughter when I read that line, and I think about it often because it's so funny.

 

"His skin sheened with sweat or ice, the magnetic purple of the Heart-Shaped Herb radiating across the veins of his neck and chest and face, pulsing with his heartbeat. M’Baku did not go near the King. T’Challa had snow in his hair."

This line, that whole paragraph was so beautifully written, but that last sentence especially stuck out to me. It was jarring, this seemingly random observation of snow in T'Challa's hair, and I *love* it. I love that you drew attention to the fact that M'Baku is noticing these small things.

 

"“Tell me,” said T’Challa, “how did you find me?”

“If I had lost you, then you wouldn’t be right here under my nose, intruding in my lands.”" -> Another wonderful wonderful example of how you wrote M'Baku's quick wit and sharp humor, god I LOVE this.

 

I also deeply enjoyed how you wrote Hanuman. You gave them a personality and presence that truly embodied what I imagined the god of the Jabari would be like. You also have an incredible talent for description without being superfluous. You bring the setting of the Jabari homeland, and the experience of interacting with Hanuman to life in a way that doesn't sacrifice the flow of words, the feeling of the story. I remember this line very specifically because of how unique it was:

"Hanuman snorted. The treetops shuddered and a sudden gust of air blew past M’Baku. It smelled sickly like fermenting melon, like the clammy growth of mushrooms." -> I don't even think I can put into words why I love this line so much, or why it got stuck in my head, but it is wonderful.

 

Your writing is a perfect example of the oft repeated advice "Show, don't tell." I don't think I've ever had the honor of reading a piece that embodies that more. You show, through delightfully descriptive language, and through amazingly in-character actions and dialogue, what everyone is feeling, and I feel awed and honored that you shared this piece with us.

 

Finally, that last scene, the dream sequence, took my breath away.

"The thunder that M’Baku heard was not from the plunging falls but the cries of all the peoples, and M’Baku’s voice was in the midst of the clamour, shouting for his King, for T’Challa! T’Challa! T’Challa !" -> This quite literally left me reeling. I gasped and flailed because my god, M'Baku acknowledges T'Challa as his king, and there could not have been a more beautiful way of acknowledging that than through this dream sequence that is, quite honestly, something I would pay to see in theaters. I would pay to see this entire fic in film form, but I don't think any film would ever be able to fully capture the magical, mystical aura and atmosphere that permeates every word and scene.

The description of Hanuman's legend right before the last dream sequence is also equally beautiful. You have such an incredible gift for storytelling.

Thank you so so much for writing this phenomenal piece and sharing it with us! Much love! <3 <3 <3

 

 

And this is a much older comment, but it's stuck with me for the past year. From bpositive for my fic Into the Calm
 

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This is honest one of the best fics I've ever read. The way you write is just.. wonderful and full of life and believable and I'm going to check after I comment if you're a published author because you should be. Thanks for writing this!!

 

 

I guess all of the above and more are the reasons I'm still writing. *sobs tears of gratitude* (couldn't find appropriate emoji...) *more sobbing*

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Alopex

So. I haven't really written anything in years, and I deleted my HPFF account over two years ago. However, earlier this month when my mom was visiting me, she asked me to look up if I still had some document--which I did. But I also found the flashdrive on which I had all my writing stored. That was the impetus I needed to start uploading this stuff. When HPFT opened its archives, I originally thought I wouldn't upload anything, because all my material is so old, but when I started reading through everything, I realized I have several pieces I'm actually proud of (and some that will never see the light of day again).

@ReillyJade just left me a review that absolutely made my day. It feels so good to have someone be affected by the emotion you're trying to convey and to notice things in your story that you worked hard to get a certain way or to include for a certain purpose.

... I didn't need my heart, anyway. Thanks for that. 😢

But, in all honesty, this was a truly lovely piece, however heartbreaking. The imagery in it is wonderful. I could very easily visualize Neville's garden, the chaos and beauty of it all. I love that he built a fountain without magic; that seems like a very Neville thing to do. Some things are worth the extra time and effort, and for Neville, his garden would obviously deserve that special attention. I also think it's very in-character for him to grow and keep non-magical plants, such as the African violets. The fact that he took the time to care for plants that served no purpose other than being pretty exemplified his true passion for herbology and gardening; to him, it was more than his job.

And Hannah... oh, poor, sweet Hannah. Her grief was pouring out of my screen. The way you intergrated all of her memories with Neville felt very organic and unforced. I especially love her reflections on watching him work, how she memorized his movements, the way his hair moved in the wind... gah, it was just lovely. (And sad, obviously.) The bit about the charm on the chair dying with him shattered my heart into a million pieces.

I really appreciate how sensitively you handled Hannah's guilt surrounding Neville's death. It's something everyone experiences when losing a loved one. We think of what we could have done, the things we missed, etc. Perhaps I'm reading too much into things, but Hannah giving the Ministry man the African violet felt symbolic of Hannah's remorse. She'd done wrong by not healing Neville properly, so she wasn't worthy of something so beautiful of his. (But, then again, I have a habit of looking for symbolism and metaphors. They're my favorite lol.)

You did a really decent job with not using any dialogue until the very end. It's super hard to do; I know from experience. I applaud you for doing it some effectively; it made the dialogue all the more powerful.

This was a wonderful read. Well done!

Cheers,
Reilly

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ShadowRose

someone posted this comment on ao3 literally less than 30 minutes after I'd published the story and y'all i read the first sentence and actually thought i was gonna cry on the metro.

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(*edited for language*)

OH MY GOD. I AM TELLING YOU THIS IS ONE OF THE BEST THINGS IVE EVER READ IN MY LIFE AND I DONT KNOW YOU BUT IM SO PROUD OF YOU AND EFFING HELL, YOU'RE SO TALENTED IM IN AWE.

"The referee throws a yellow flag at Sirius, and the conversation is essentially terminated by Remus’s impassioned shouting of, “The other team did that two minutes ago, where’s their effing flag!?”

I don't even ship Wolfstar but this is definitely something that they would do and it made the fangirl in me squeal. 

"She turns on her heel and walks down the hall, but not before she notices James out of the corner of her eye, stopped in his tracks, having clearly overheard their entire conversation."

asjdhakjsdhajHJHSADUAS I CANT EVEN. THE FEELINGS. THE ATMOSPHERE. 

You should know that I don't even like TATBILB that much (I'm sorry!) but you've written it well, better than the books and IM JUST IN AWE AND I JUST WOW 

THANK YOU FOR THIS

 

 

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MadiMalfoy

Hi so I requested a review from Abby (@Chemical_Pixie) and it literally made me cry (tears of happiness) on my OF piece, but like, she's so NICE AND LOVELY about the whole thing!! I just literally cried again when reading it :wub: 

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Initial thoughts: forests, tea, and magic are three of my favorite things. I'm instantly intrigued about this story!

Your opening description is beautiful. This forest cottage is a place I would very much like to visit, even if I couldn't remember visiting it afterwards. There is a cerain mysteriousness to this cottage, which opens a lot of questions. How did the cottage come to be? Why is this dweller living alone? Why does she make tea for the travelers? Why can't travelers remember their visits?

These questions drive me, the reader, to continue reading.

Then you spring into action with an actual visitor--except this visitor isn't a lost hiker, and she can clearly remember meeting Amaryllis, since they're friends (is this something you want to clarify in the future? I gather that this is a snippet of a greater work--but more on that later). You show great characterization of the women based on their interactions with one another: giving treats and making tea and sitting down together.

Your dialogue then does take the focus of the piece, but you still layer in enough description that the story continues to flow with your vividly painted images. Your dialogue also opens the avenue to even more questions: potioneer/chemist patents? PhD programs in a world of magic? Vet school? Amaryllis' parents' deaths? You sprinkle in these tidbits of information, setting up a more complex narrative, which seems bigger than the small cottage where this story takes place. And I think this is a strong point of your piece. I get the sense that this is only an introductory snippet of a bigger idea--and how fitting to have the setting in a cottage! I am so interested in this world you've built and where your characters are going to go.

Speaking of characters, I think you do a great job at Amaryllis' and Eirraphe's characterization. The way you show the sassiness of Eirraphe through his interaction with Myrcella and how loyal he is to Amaryllis through his affectionate interactions with her is amazing--I'm reminded of a cat, and I love cats, and so therefore, I can relate my love of cats to this dragon, and I love him. Amaryllis seems to be such a caring person--why else would she make so many people tea? She gives so much--and yet is hesitant to take, like when she turns on Myr's offer to fund her vet school (at least, that's what I assume her offer is). She has pride in wanting to support herself, which is so relatable. But then, at the end, your closing sentence on "maybe one day..." makes me reconsider her pride. Sure, she may have it, but I also sense she may be scared to leave her cottage. After all, this is her safe space, and she has gone through a major loss with the death of her parents. I totally understand the desire to feel safe after such an upheaval. Having your MC have these vulnerabilies makes her likeable and draws the reader further into your tale.

Overall, well done, Madi! You should be proud of what you've accomplished in this piece. Don't give up on this; I'm so curious to see where this goes!

 

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ShadowRose

i have gotten the absolute most hilariously amazing comments on my political jily fic on both tumblr and ao3, so i'm doing a massive dump of them here so i can squee all  over again 😂

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I WOULD GIVE 550505 CIGARETTES FOR THIS FIC IN JAIL

 
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I have no idea how a perfect encapsulation of everything that bothers me about the DC metro and WMATA ended up in a jily fic but I AM LIVING FOR IT

 
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CAN THIS FIC BE MY LIFE??? AHHH. I LOVE EVERY PART OF IT AND WILL PROBABLY BE INTERNALLY SCREAMING ABOUT IT FOR THE NEXT DECADE.

 
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Um I LOVE THIS. I'm a political staffer and thank you for the most realistic politics AU I've ever read in fanfic. Usually I can't stand them for how inaccurate they are but this is fantastic.

 
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Can I quote you like? At length???? Because this fic is the best thing in the world

*large chunk of quotes from  the story*

LIKE ALSDKJFA;SLDKJF;ALSKDJF;ASKLDFJ
THIS FIC
WAS ALL MY HOPES AND DREAMS FOR FIC
ROLLED TOGETHER INTO ONE STUNNING FIC

AND EVERYTHING THAT YOU SAID ABOUT WMATA

THE LINE ABOUT HTE RED LINE BEING THE ONE THAT CATCHES ON FIRE ALL THE TIME
I LITERALLY CHOKED ON MY TEA LAUGHING ABOUT THAT

YOU ARE STUNNING AND BRILLIANT AND I CAN'T WAIT TO READ EVERYTHING ELSE YOU'VE EVER WRITTEN

 
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Ugh, you make writing well look so effortless. This was just such a delight to read, and you captured James and Lily perfectly. I love me a focused, confident woman. And also a kind, confident man. You just made them work so well with each other, and you wove the other characters in beautifully too, even though we didn't get too much of them. Plus, President Minerva McGonagall????? If only the world were that lucky.

 

oh, and also this line from @facingthenorthwind's hpft archive review on the same story:

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TAYLOR I AM GOING TO M E L T @ JAMES TELLING HER ALL ABOUT THE PRETTY GIRL. I AM MELTING. I AM THE WICKED WITCH OF THE WEST ALL UP IN HERE. I AM A TUB OF ICE CREAM YOU FORGOT IN THE CAR. I AM THE ICE LOLLY YOU BOUGHT AND THEN FOOLISHLY LEFT THE SHOP WITH AND THEN YOU IMMEDIATELY GOT BLASTED WITH FORTY-FIVE DEGREE HEAT AND NOW YOUR HANDS ARE STICKY AND THERE ARE NO PUBLIC TAPS. THIS IS WHAT YOU HAVE REDUCED ME TO.

 

basically i have been screaming internally and giggling like a maniac for the past week so thank u internet

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galadriel

Look at this incredibly thoughtful and amazing review @Aphoride left for me on my fic falling. :sad: :sad: i have no words to express how touched i am by this.

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Hey there, Nim! Dropping by for your wishlist! You've been such a rockstar around the forums and in the cr and, well, pretty much everywhere so it seemed only right to leave something for you ;)

I loved this. It's heartbreaking and desperate and awful and so amazing. You have a real, real talent for making your words mean something more than just a definition, yk - when you write, it's always so emotional, so genuine and so real, and that comes through so strongly. You have such a powerful voice and I love it because it conveys everything so well and so beautifully and it gives everything you write that kind of x factor where a story takes hold of you and you feel it too. Most stories don't do that - they're fun, but they don't grab you like that - but yours do. 

On the topic of the story, I love that you used a boy to portray this whole issue: how Lysander isn't eating, how Hugo's the one watching him, wanting to make him, shout at him until he eats, how he wants to find some way to break Lysander out of the spiral he's trapped in. Male anorexia and eating disorders are so, so un-talked about and it's a real shame because they're more of a problem than I think people realise (as are so many other things). I love how Xeno knows but Lysander's parents don't really know (and, presumably, although he's not mentioned in this, Lorcan doesn't really know either), and they're trying but it's hard. The way you showed Lysander with his idiosyncrasies about how much he eats and what: the way he drinks exactly half of the orange juice, only the corners of the sandwiches, exactly four bites per sandwich... anorexia is such a psychological illness and I love how much you brought that through here. It's grim and it's addictive and it's just a normalised routine for Lysander - and becoming one for Hugo, too - and that's devastating. The normality of it all. 

I've always known you have a real knack for writing about difficult, emotive topics so well and so sensitively, and this really, really isn't any exception to that. 

Also, I gotta say, I'm blown away by how you did the alphabet challenge - with each sentence starting with a new letter of the alphabet. It's ridiculously hard and... well, I didn't even notice it as I was reading until I got to the end and realised there wasn't a second z (which I don't know if it was intentional, but I love it anyway: how the second rendition of the alphabet doesn't quite get finished; the sense of completion and incompletion) :P Your writing is always incredible - you have such a lovely style, so easy and so great to read - and I'm amazed at how you managed to get every sentence starting with the next letter of the alphabet, while still maintaining that same smooth, lyrical style. 

This is an amazing story and you're an amazing author and I hope you have a wonderful, wonderful holiday period and a great new year :)

:wub: :wub::wub: 

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aelaia

This beautiful review left for me by @Stella Blue on my Yaxbridge short story, in response to my wishlist has truly inspired me to write a follow-on fic. Any review that creates muse for me needs shouting about! 😍😍 Thank you for being a beautiful soul and making this story for me!

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Heyo! I'm here for your wishlist!

 

Omg this was such a fun fic - I've seen the body swapping idea in sci fi before, but have never read a fan fiction about it, and swapping two such drastically different characters is bound to result in chaos - as it did! What an entertaining idea.

 

So from the very beginning i was wondering how this swap even happened, but was willing to put my wondering aside to just go along for the ride and see where the story ended up. And all the office redecoration had me in stitches, no wonder nothing ever gets done at the Ministry. Other employees are totally walking by and thinking "ugh  i can't believe Yaxley is getting paid for this cat redecorating right now". XD

 

And Yaxley being so concerned with seeming manly and imposing, it's like the floor is swept out from underneath him when he has a girly voice. While it was really silly and amusing to see them both adjusting to this, I think this is also a very intelligent aspect of this fic, pointing out the inequity in how masculine and feminine people are percieved in the workplace. Like, Umbridge is so stoked that she can get things done now without even having to do any work simply because she is tall and has a powerful voice now, whereas it's a lot more difficult for Yaxley to get people to respect him and he has to make Runcorn find him some shoes because no one will listen to her on her own. Idk, for being a body swapping fanfiction about magic, there's some potent truths in there, haha.

 

And then just as it started to get really weird - and Yaxley was Umbridge who was Voldemort! - it was all a dream. I love that they were having the same dream XD The fact that it was just a dream explains the "how" of the swapping, and it also puts them in the position that they were in in the dream itself, in that they're both in on this weird event and no one else gets it. It would be like an inside joke if either of them were the type that appreciated jokes. Which... they aren't, (And if they were, I don't think they'd enjoy the same jokes.) But this is about as close as they can get to an inside joke, I guess XD

 

But I like that Yaxley got some perspective from all of this, and realized how difficult it is to be her. I'd honestly love to see how this changed things for them afterwards, it's such an interesting set up for a continuation! This was a fun story and you did a great job with it :)

 

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