hey. i really like the story but it would be so much better if you wrote in a normal format!!!! please, please, go ahead and keep this one on, but please also submit the same story in the usual format. id love to read it
Author's Response: Er, I'm not sure what you mean by normal format. Do you mean the quotation marks? But thanks for reviewing. I was afraid that my paragraph formatting was off, and it was, and I fixed it. LOL.
*grumbles about html*
To be honest, structure, diction and description, respectively, I adore.
I meant, "To be honest, your structure, diction, and description, respectively, I adore."
Sorry about that. ;)
Author's Response: Heh, I got the point anyway, but thanks for clarifying. ;]
Caren, this is really a piece of and of its own only; unparralleled in its own unusual way. To be honest, structure, diction and description, respectively, I adore. (Partially because it reminds me of my own, but too, and more, because it has its own minor, or not-so-minor, edges to it.)
On strengths. What is the most prominent to me, is the apparant angle at which you go about telling the parts of the story: how you manipulate grammar, sentence, any technicality, to your advantage pulling, stringing, finding the pattern and the words which came across the story, always carefully directing them ——you are obviously in full, unrestrained control.
(e.g. below-shown opening scene
On her knees, sobbing. The ground, hard. Two arms, pulling, supporting, saying more to her than words ever could. Down, then up. Spiraling down, then drifting up. Down, darkness. Up, light.
is a good example: you cut the sentences up, cut them and cut them and cut them, using your knowledge on syntax to get a staccato rhythm that reeks of / reminds me of a girl in distress, which is how I see Hermione in that situation. Incidentally, these seemingly snatched out words that are, in fact, sentences, makes for a great opening paragraph.)
Aforesaid opening also directs me to another point: it is lovely, and highly interesting, how you bring into the end the opening paragraph, how this works as, or makes for, a wonderfully (repetitive) un-chronological structure. You make the beginning the end, and the end the beginning——(by) reversing the roles.
The characterisation too, I think, is wonderful. Hermione is portrayed three-dimensionally; she is a girl, six years, seventeen years, she is believable, she is divided by the thought of leaving in shadow one of her worlds: friends, or family? When you're splitted apart by the magical and non magical word, it gets logically harder to keep your friends, who are in the magical world, and your family, who are in the non magical world, without loosing the other. By doing so / writing so, you put Hermione in such a internal quagmire we can't avoid to sympathise with her——we can understand her, feel her pain, conflict, internal struggle, and more, and we wish that we could do anything for her——because we see us inside her.
On constructive criticism. This can hardly be called anymore than sincere nit-picks, since you don't do anything significantly wrong in this piece. I would like to say, though, that readers could argue on the boldness of your dialogue format, which is one the readers either like or do not——a cause most likely deriving from the fact that this structure, this dialogue format, is not one to bee seen everyday. I, myself, likes it: I have a tendency, it turns out, to love what is unique and not often seen in writing, because it shows a great boldness and confidence from the author 's part, doing what he, or she, does.
On the Light / Dark Theme. This is a thing I couldn’t, at all, overlook, or review without mentioning. You bring up here one of those themes that won't, ever, go ignored: it is the base of our living: shall we do right, or wrong—what consequences, in result, would then come? It is the base of our living because our choices either choose the good, or the easy. And we, in return, depends and are made out of our choices. That's why I think specified theme is so important: with it, we connect (to the real world); with it, we too understand that we live in no moral heaven. You have, in my opinion, got this point across very well.
Last of all, now that I end up this review, I would like to say that my favourite part, or "tool" rather, was, simply, how you used the beginning as a closure for the ending, how this made for an heart-felt echo-esque, reveberating ending that, confessed, sent shivers down my spine.
Author's Response: Good Lord, how have I not responded to this already? I deserve to be banished to the far corners of the HP fandom. *hides*
Anyway, thanks for the lovely review. You tend to run on the high side of verbose, but every review is always thought-out very well, and I appreciate that. It makes me want to squee that you find the fic so unique, because who wants to hear they're conforming to everyone else? Ugh.
Mmm. I like how you say I stretch and pull until I get the words I want, or in which order. I find normal syntax boring, as you might notice. So I "stretch and pull" the limits of grammar, as it were, until I get exactly the effect I want. The opening is my favorite part; I wrote it on a burst of inspiration and stared at it until the culmination of a million plot bunnies came together and I started typing. Of course Nan, my beta, had me change some of the wording, but all for the better.
Everyone has that internal struggle inside them, though here Hermione's choosing between many different things: good, evil or apathy [which is evil of itself]; the magical world or non-magical; her friends or her family; to do something or nothing. That relates to the good-evil-or-apathy argument, but it can be different. We all have to choose, stand at the crossroads. It's why it hits all of us.
Yes, I could definitely agree that readers either hate or love the dialogue. I once submitted it to Lumos, but they rejected it on the base of the dialogue, because somewhere in their rules they insisted on proper punctuation. I shrugged and didn't re-submit cos I didn't want to the lose the feel the nonexistent quote marks gave the piece.
Dumbledore said we have to choose between what is right and what is easy. I believe that to be very true. I'm so glad that you liked this fic so much, and I managed to send chills up someone's spine. >.> Thanks again for the review. You do make a girl feel proud.
*Is also a SBBCer*
But you know, even if I wasn’t and I had come across this story, I would have reviewed it. It was just amazing. Different that anything I’ve ever read... but amazing.
At first glance, I wondered why I didn't see any quotation marks, and figured, at once, that I would be very, very confused. However, I then began to read the story, and found it quite enjoyable. I think that the lack of quotations around the dialogue actually makes it more effective. The whole piece flows together perfectly—there aren't many stories that could pull this dialogue off. However, I found that it fit the rhythm and tone of this piece beautifully. You kept the dialogue simple, which was nice in terms of the flow, but it was also meaningful. This story was complex in a way that made me think a lot; not complex in a way that was extremely wordy, so that was really nice.
What I loved about this piece was the theme, and the tone that the story takes. It gives me a sense of something, well, more. A theme bigger than Hermione, and bigger than the story of one girl. It gives me the feeling of knowing right and wrong, good and evil. Of moving on, and changes in one's life, represented in this story by Hermione and her mom’s relationship. Like this line:
She knows her mother can't hear her here, so she allows her tears to spill to the ground, her grief and sorrow mingling with the dirt of the well-beaten path.
This line brought me close to tears. It wasn’t the line itself; it was the knowledge that her mother was gone, and that she could do nothing about it. But it was more than that. It was the rhythm of it, how fast paced it was. It seemed to move along so quickly, in a way symbolizing how quickly death comes after life. I could feel for Hermione, who I could tell wanted to stop time and be with her mother again, but was being moved on so quickly by life, and the choices that she had made long ago, about what she wanted to do in her life.
There is nothing in-between for her. She can raise up the walls again and choose one or the other, or she can live with both. But they have crumbled and fallen and shaken the foundation that was the normalcy of Hermione. The Muggle-turned-witch, as it were.
I adore this line. It again brings me back to the initial thought of the concepts of life that this fic portrays. I think that the life-altering choice that Hermione had to make was so real and so accurately written. By saying that there was no in between, we as readers feel the importance and the impact that this was going to have on her. Saying that there was no in between made the situation so much more real, and allowed us to relate better to Hermione.
I simply love the way that Hermione is portrayed in this. It was as though she wanted to stay where she felt safe, but knew what she had to do for the good of the world. I think that is so in character with how she is in the books. For instance, in the books Hermione never likes to break rules, but we’ve seen it done when it needs to be. I love how you show that in this fic; Hermione would do something if it needed to be done, whether she thought it was the best thing for herself or not. It all comes down to the line in GoF: what is right and what is easy. This fic shows how everyone has to face that decision, and how Hermione chose to handle it. And like I said, I think that she is very in character, in that she would have made that same decision in canon.
Curse this cruel world. It gives her no time to live. To love as she would want to.
That’s another great line. It shows, like I mentioned before, how she chose to do what she felt was right. I adore how you included her doubts in this story. It made it all more real. It showed how these choices aren’t easy, but must be made.
One line confused me a tad. Death, she completes dully. (She is rising inside.) I’m a bit unsure whether this is Hermione or her mom speaking. I think it’s her mom, as the next line is Hermione saying ‘yes’ but I think that’s the only thing that I really needed clarified.
Down, darkness. Up, light.
I just love this. Coincidentally, so many fics I’ve been reading lately have been saying there is no right and wrong, no good and evil. This statement proves them wrong. You’re saying in this story that there only is a clear-cut right and wrong, good and evil. I loved the way that this fic portrayed these simply aspects of life, all thrown together into Hermione’s story.
This truly was a brilliant fic, and I am truly glad that I joined the SBBC, for had I not, I probably wouldn’t have gotten the chance to read this marvelous story.
(Oh, and I hope I wasn’t repetitive of the other SBBCers… I apologize if I was, but I didn’t read their reviews before I wrote this. And I'm sorry if I repeated myself a bit... but I started this one day and finished it another day, so, yeah.)
Author's Response: Ah! *spazzes* I thought I'd responded to this a long time ago - or not. Sorry, dear. This is really long – and amazing – but I’ll answer one piece at a time.
Exactly on target with the quote marks. I didn’t want to trip over them, and it sort of removed the perspective. As if you’re seeing the story from behind a veil, like it’s surreal. And it was very wordy at the beginning. I chopped it up and removed a lot, you know.
Hermione had an incredibly difficult choice. She did want to stop time, but she can’t even do that – because that would mean inaction. She can’t slow it down, and she doesn’t want to speed it up. It’s a very hard crossroads to come to. And so, there you go, Hermione on the path finally letting her grief out.
I’m glad that you as a reader didn’t try to come up with “alternate solutions.” I really dislike it when readers say, “This or that should have happened instead.” It always ruins the impact of the story, even on other readers. And hearing that you could really relate is really encouraging. Thank you so much.
“She would have made the same decision in canon”? That is probably one of the biggest compliments a reviewer can pay a writer, and thank you! I didn’t agonise over everything I wrote, trying to see if she would have done it in canon. It’s really restricting, you know, and you start to second-guess yourself. But I always kept it in the back of my mind, letting red flags go up as they came along. So often writers think of some conflict and try to fit Hermione into it, which is like trying to fit mismatched puzzle pieces together – eventually they will, but not perfectly and one will always be out of shape.
Everyone has doubts. About everything. And I will change that line; I think that’s been mentioned before. On the other subject: In our personal lives, we all have different definitions of good and evil, but in the books I really think JKR has been cutting that line very definitely. Harry, good. Voldemort, evil. So I tried to draw that line very clearly here too. And I just liked the light/good, darkness/evil imagery.
You have paid me some of the highest compliments as a reviewer. You shouldn’t apologise – this in itself is beautiful, and it’s so informed and substantiated and in tone, very warm. It’s truly an honor to be given such a review. And you know, all of the SBBC reviews are so amazing. If I had gotten just one over the last couple months, I would have been happy for a long time. But I’m lucky and I’m able to come into contact with some brilliant minds. Oh, and the reason I found I hadn’t replied was because I just saw you made mod, and I was sure you had given me a review. Congratulations! No idea if you’ll read this, but it’s here anyway. Once again, thank you!
As you said at first, this is an odd format to use, no quotation marks, lots of short sentences, all the italics and parenthesis. At first it's rather hard to read, but once you get the hang of it, the flow sucks you in like an undertow. There's a rythum to the story that would have been hindered by traditional grammar. Congrats on pulling off a very hard feat- to beat grammar! So many people try and fail miserably, you you have mastered your story and therefore were able to use an alternate format.
I really liked the imagery of the wall. At first Hermione believes it seperates her real life, with her imaginary life, when in fact that imagination is her manifestation of her magic. I see this as very likely and very in character. We see Hermione as a bossy bookworm known for her logic, but she is also a crative girl I can see her as a girl who would devour a book and play-act the adventures she'd read.
I also see Hermione's parents very much in character. Although we've only seen glimpes of them in the books, we can only imagine what it must have been like to raise a child that obviously was different. And then to be comfronted about her oddities would be unsettling. I am quite amazed actually that two professionals who would raise a child like Hermione would send their child blindly to a school they had never heard of or seen. That says a lot about them.
Upon first reading I was a bit put off by Hermione's breakdown flashed in the beginning and then at the end. I didn't really understand where it fit into the story. But after pondering the story for a while, I realized that it was necessary indeed. Hermione had to convince her parents, specifically her mother that this is a battle she MUST fight, but then she had to convince herself of it to. That fleeting tempation that says "You don't have to help, you can stay here with your parents and ignore all that unpleasantness." We are all visited by those demons, and I think ti's very appropriate that Hermione would be tempted by them, just as Harry is.
This story gave me a lot to think about. I liked it a lot.
I must also let you know that this story was recommended to the Susan Bones' Book Club on the beta forums. Our members have been reading the fic all week and been discussing it. You are more than welcome to puruse the thread to see what was said. It's a great honor to be picked, and I think we were honored at being able to read such a thought-provoking story. Thank you!
Author's Response: To that I say - wow. It's obvious that it took you a bit to write the review or that you thought about it considerably. Yay for good reviews! There's nothing better to lift your spirits. I mean, not really, but yes. LOL.
"The flow sucks you in like an undertow" - I could so hug you right now. And I beat grammar, woot! It's so nice to know I'm good at something.
As an author, "in character" is practically music to my ears. I always worry if my vision of characters is anything like JKR sees them, so that was really quite reassuring. In the case of Hermione especially, because she's one of the main characters [oh, you don't say!] and it can be hard to get her right. I hope also that I helped portray my image of Hermione's dentist parents as other people too. And to weigh sending Hermione off to Hogwarts blindly, I think that the main factor was how unsettling, as you said, that her magical blood was.
As to Hermione's breakdown, it's always been there for me. It was sort of an inspiration or building point if you will. To me it was the most important because apathy is so appealing and we all want to back away and leave it to the good guys. We are "all visited by those demons," so cookies for pointing that out.
Hmm. That would be interesting. A piece about Harry struggling with that decision - gah, no! School first! *headdesk*
O.O Really?! Wow! I have to run over there right this instant. I feel so honored ... exhilarated. And awww, thank you so much! This review was very encouraging and really perked my mood up. Why are you thanking me? I thank you! lol.
This story certainly was different from anything I’ve ever read, but different is good, in fact, it’s brilliant in this case. It took a bit to get used to the style of this piece, but then it just flowed. The dialogue, even though you didn’t put any quotation marks, didn’t give me any problems. If anything it was easier to read and fit better with the mood of the story without the quotation marks. I don’t know why, but I think quotation marks would have somewhat ruined the atmosphere and the flighty, barely-there feeling of the piece.
I always look out for imagery in a story, mostly because I don’t use much in my own stories or the images don’t convey what I want them to, but imagery is always one of the first things I notice about a story. Two images stood out to me here. First the image of Hermione’s childhood, in which the backdoor is also the door to her imagination. I loved how even as a small child, Hermione lived in two worlds, one the “real” Muggle world, and one the world of her imagination, where magic is possible and fairies and dragons exist. Even though she doesn’t know that she really belongs to that world and is, in fact, a witch, she already lives in it.
The second image was even more powerful, the image of the wall separating her two worlds from each other a few years later again. While she didn’t know she was a witch, the wall was there but with entering Hogwarts, it crumbled. Then it comes back and Hermione has to work even harder to make it crumble this time, it’s not effortless anymore and she isn’t a child anymore. I don’t know if it was your intention, but to me this conveyed the passage from being a child to being an adult, where things that were easy once, become harder and where people really have to work for what they believe in. Childhood is simply compared to adulthood, and this image showed that beautifully, even if it maybe meant something completely different, this is what it suggested to me.
Hermione’s situation as you portray it in this story is one only a few fanfic authors touch upon, but I believe it is one of the problems every Muggleborn witch or wizard faces at one point in their life. They are, as you showed us, part of two worlds, but living in two worlds is nearly impossible, there will always be one world that has to take the backseat. But how do you choose between your family and your friends? I think this story made this issue obvious and it’s very IC for Hermione to try the impossible and live in both worlds, not losing either her parents or her friends and her magic. During her school years it wouldn’t have been as hard, but after her Hogwarts years keeping in touch with her roots, so to speak, while living in the wizarding world and fighting in its war, would be difficult to say the least.
Mrs. Granger’s reaction to her conversation with Hermione is exactly how I imagine a mother would react when her child tells her she has to fight a war and might die. I can understand her reaction, and yet I felt sad for Hermione who nearly lost her family, because her mother couldn’t see how important this was for her daughter, and the whole world. I’m glad Hermione could make her mother see why she has to go away with Ron and Harry, but this whole conversation can’t have been easy on Hermione and you showed that brilliantly in her breakdown after she leaves the house.
The breakdown also shows how much Hermione depends on Harry and Ron and how strong their friendship is, because they are right there for her and help her when she needs them, as she would do for them. It’s the perfect ending for a story that has been mostly about Hermione and her strength in remaining in both worlds, but in the end she isn’t alone and has friends who will help her through anything.
She shows him the living room, offering him a cup or tea. ‘Or’ needs to be ‘of’ here, just a small typo.
As I said before, this story is simply brilliant. I don’t think my review did it justice, but it moved me deeply and I’m glad I got the chance to read it.
Author's Response: Oh. My. I'm floored by this review. Yes, I can understand when people say "Well, you needed quotation marks," but when someone comes along and s/he completely understands what you're trying to say, it's amazing. That someone is you - you're amazing! This review was so carefully thought-out that it makes writing all the worth while.
Imagery is possibly one of my most favorite figures of speech, and I use it as much as possible, being visually oriented. I've always imagined the door as opening and then the scene being enveloped in light. Quite cinematic, in fact. I'm glad that you understood that image and the next. And I wrote that metaphor because
it seemed coolI knew it was going to parallel a lot of things for a lot of people. I definitely agree that it can also describe the passage from child to adult.
Muggleborn witches and wizards have always been fascinating to me. I was one of those kids who really hoped they'd receive a letter from Hogwarts after they turned eleven, and I've always fantasised about turning magical and being, obviously, from a "Muggle" background. I planned out how I’d be told, how my family would react … yes. I was a complete fan. But here, on MNFF, you can take dreams like that and apply it.
You've just ... gotten it. There's no other way to say it. You "get" everything. The ending? You interpreted it perfectly. Yes, she can’t do it on her own, and it costs her much more than she thought it would. I'm going to stop rambling, because this'll turn out longer than your review, but thank you so much for this. Every compliment lifts me higher until I feel like I’m flying. It's the nicest feeling in the world, to have someone understand something you've done. :)
Wonderful! You really deserve the spot on the featured list- a little hard to read, but once I got used to the diolouge it was fine. I really liked the thing about their light, and the way Hermione's mind worked differently because of her magic- with the walls and all. Well done indeed!
Author's Response: Oh, thank you! Yes, people find it hard at first, but I'm glad that you kept reading and even left a review. :) Mm, I'm not sure that you understood - Hermione's mind isn't different but metaphorically there's that wall because she's a Muggleborn witch. But muchos gracias!
wow. this was excellent. the writing style was unique, but powerful. the story idea was good too, and one that i had never thought of too deeply. this is a wonderful piece, great job!
Author's Response: Thank you for everything! I'm glad to see some feedback on my work.
Wow...I have to say I was confused at first. I had to go back and read it through again but I loved it. You never hear much about Hermione's relationship w/ her parents. To take on that concept was a great idea. You're a fabulous writer. You should really continue to submit more stories!
Author's Response: *cringes* Sorry. Yeah, it can get confusing, but I'm glad you went back instead of passing it off as dumb, lol. I've always been fascinated with Muggleborns who struggle with their parents, so I decided to explore it. And thank you for the compliments! I'm grinning like mad. Maybe I should submit more - I'll keep that in mind. :)
awesome story. i aboslutely loved it 12/10 great job!! :D
Author's Response: Haha woot! I get 120%! Thanks much for the review. :)
Wonderful story, the emotions were so real. Congratulations!
Author's Response: Boo for fake emotions. And thank you! :D
Oooh man. *Sniffs* This was amazing! Where do I start?
First off, the lack of quotation marks - I LOVED it. I was able to follow along just fine, & I like the effect it had. It didn't interrupt the story, in my opinion, & I think it makes it flow better. Awesome idea to leave them out :]
I love the sentence fragments. Especially the beginning paragraph - & then how you tied it into the end? WOW. That's when I got a little bit teary-eyed.
Let's see. These are some of my favorite lines:
"Your daughter Hermione has magic running through her veins." - I don't know, just the way he said it gave me goosebumps :D
"The wall has crumbled again, but this time at a harsh price."
"Hermione smiles, and closes her eyes once more. There is no more darkness there. Only light--their light."
There was just so much power in your words, &... I can't even describe them. The whole thing was just wonderful.
This entire part I absolutely love: "She wants to wait, oh how she wants the world to wait for her. But no, it drives on relentlessly like a master cracking a vicious whip at the backs of slaves. Hermione wants to tell her mother that she loves her, but she has no time. Curse this cruel world. It gives her no time to live. To love as she would want to.
But Hermione loves her mother. It's there in her eyes."
Again, powerful words. It's so emotional, & the simile at the beginning is really effective. Everything's just beautifully written.
I'm so blown away I can't think of very much to say! This is definitely going to be added to my list of favorites. & congratulations on it being picked as a featured story - it's exciting, & you definitely deserve the recognition :D
Author's Response: A good review! I love good reviews! Anyway.
Yay, I made someone happy about no quote marks. I wanted it from the beginning, and I'm so glad to hear that it even made it flow better. I wanted that, though some didn't think so. And sentence fragments are, IMO, more powerful than normal, blah sentences. lol.
The rest of the review just makes me grin. You can tell I picked all my words carefully - amazing. :) Thanks so much - this really makes my day.
that was so awesome!!! i cried through part of it. the only thing was it was hard to understand because the stuff people said wasn't in" " so that was a bit confusing, but it was very good.
Author's Response: Aww, I made a reader cry! *silently whoops but hands over a tissue* Yeah ... no quote marks can get confusing, but I wanted a special effect. Thank you much. :)
wow. your story is good but confusing.
Author's Response: Er ... thank you? lol.
Oh, poor Hermione's mum! I like the very distictive style this story has, as well as the relationship between Hermione and her mother. I think there is a special sort of "battle" that all muggle-borns (especially Hermione who has such an important role in such an important war) that you have shown very well.
Author's Response: Mmm, thank you so much. I love how readers catch on to the right things, and you're dead-on. If there was a target, you'd hit the bull's eye. Good reviewers rock!
Look at that, limelight! Congrats, Aequitus. I knew it was special. :)
Author's Response: Oh, thanks so much for the encouragement. You can't even imagine how excited I am! :D I'm going to literally start bouncing off the walls!
Like ravenclawslion17, I don't really think that I have anything to say that no one else has said, but I do want to make sure that you knw how impressed I am. This is one of those fics that wasn't ever in the limelight, but is one of the best written. I really liked the premise and your delivery. *huggles metaphors*
Hermione is (in my opinion) a hard character to get exactly right because she is often miscontrued as just a nagging bookworm. You really gave her some depth. I've put this story on my Favorites and hope to see something else by you.
Author's Response: You know, I appreciate all reviews, but yours was really encouraging--the kind of review every writer wants. :) I agree, it never was in the limelight, but I'd much rather get nice reviews than spam or even flames. Hermione is, hands-down, my favorite character in HP, and I thank you so much that I got her right. I hope to publish another work soon, and thanks for the support.
This is an amazing piece of work. It is absolutely beautifully written. Everything is one big metaphor, which is interesting - the reader is left to imagine things themselves. Also, this may be slightly odd, but Mrs. Granger's first name, Amelia, just works in this. Oftentimes her name seems really forced and is awkward.
There is only one weak trait I see in this fic. The lack of quotation marks confused me, and several times I had to step back and reread a paragraph a second time so that it would make sense. However, the lack of quotation marks also makes this story unique.
I don't think that my review will compare much to the others, but they pretty much covered anything. This is a phenonmenal fic. Great job =)
Author's Response: Why, thank you for the review! They really do make an author's day. I love metaphors and I like how I left imagination up to the reader, kind of like Hermione. And yes, I've gotten comments on the quotation marks, but you're right, I do like my story a bit unique. :) I hope that the other reviews didn't scare you too much! I appreciate your review as much I do them.
Caren- I'm speechless- I'm having to write a review based on one word. You know the word? Surely somebody told you- but I'll say it again, just for it to be hammered in your head- Caren, you are brilliant. Simply put, that is. I'm going to try and dive into your excellence you wrote out for us here in your fic. There is that issue, clarity, in some parts, but it just makes the fic so much more magical and gives the potential for thousands of fans. *does curt bow* I am just one of your humble fans.
Where should I start? There are so many places to cover, I just have no idea where. Hm... *draws out of hat* Ah. I'm going to apparently start with your way you portrayed the two events. Specifically speaking, some differences that normally wouldn't work. For instance- when you referred to the witch and wizard as "he" and "she", it gives an aura of mystery around them, and it makes the fic mystical. Well, partly, as some lines you used contributed as well, but it was a great addition, as well as the parenthesis for the most important details as to what the characters were doing and the refrain from using dialogue marks.
Your use of words is very imaginative and used only when it will have the most powerful impact. I can give you several examples of this- and, in fact, I think I will. Just a few of the one liners I don't have much to say about: "She takes another step, then runs into her mother's open arms without hesitation. Just like a child." Could you have possibly inserted this at a better time? I don't think so. It's a force to be reckoned with on its own, but when inserted into the area and time it was- you made a powerful statement. "She goes through the motions, and soon they sit content with cups of tea; nothing added for him, a helping of sugar for her." Might I say that the "him" and "her" repeat comes into play here as well? Just... it just was that wow factor.
"She laughs and turns, eyes set on the door on the other side of the kitchen. Her hand touches the doorknob, cold but inviting. Light envelops her as she steps out into her imagination." This has to be one of the best lines that has ever been written in fanfiction. Not my absolute favorite line, but it is powerful. Imagination for a child is so important- and we wonder when they cross the line from reality to imagination. Whenever they let go of whatever's ont heir mind, and go somewhere they can actually play- that's what I'm catching from what you written. And Hermione once had that playful spirit! Imagine! You opened my eyes to the fact that yes, Hermione once was a child.
This passage was one of my favorite exchanges between the characters in the one-shot: "Business, I'm afraid, Mr Granger. It concerns your daughter.":---:"Wrong? he asks quickly. Oh, no. No. She is perfectly fine.":---:" He stops. Hesitates." It appears to be the wizard assuring Mr. Granger that his daughter is fine, and that her schooling is going quite alright. However, we all know that Hermione is a little genius- so irony is sort of wiggled into place there as well.
Lord, I'm rambling on and on. I'll try to limit the amount of quoting quotes... I guess. *shrugs* Anyway, I have two really interesting passages from here that just made me think: "Hermione comes inside. She doesn’t realise it, of course, but the moment she steps inside, the walls and doors she once could see vanish, the walls and doors that once separated her from her imagination. Imagination to reality. Reality becomes imagination. Imagination is reality.":---:"She thinks she steps from one world to another just as she has been doing for so long, but the moment she does, the two worlds meld and blend into one." Both lines stand alone, and both lines are powerful. Both are fantastic additions, and both explain why the title is what it is. They were simply spectacular- and I got more than what I was hoping for. Caren, you made me squeal with delight after I saw these lines. But oh no- my squeals did not cease there. They continued onward.
These next few lines we're recieved with much squeeing, love, and OMG-ness. Please excuse me from commentating on them, as they speak plainly on why they are great themselves- and the fact that I'm almost squeeing again. "Why is it you that must be one to save the world?" (Just to let you know, it's my fave line). "Her hand turns the cold—but inviting, she remembers from a time long past—doorknob to her backyard." (I don't know- the repeat of this line I love is a very close second) "The darkness shrinks back from her, driven by the burst of light which envelops her spirit. Flee, she says. Not here. This is not your place.
It is mine." (And a very close third as well)
I think I wasted enough space for now. Just know that I want you to have one idea imprinted in your head, if you haven't gotten it already- this was brilliant. Thanks for the entertaining read. :)
Author's Response: Patrick! *huggles* Oh, I was just wowed by your review. So what if it was "based on one word?" It was so thorough and completely, totally made my day. :D
What can I say? You caught a lot of subtle things I inserted--the whole mysticality of the him and her, the "vague clarity" of the absense of quotation marks--and that makes me want to squee. You know, this fic was beta'd 1938489 times by Nan, so she helped me change a couple of the lines. I'm so glad to see you like them. Hehe. *huggles again* Thanks so much for reviewing! I'm going to have this smile on my face for a while. ;)
This is Lian, reporting for reviewing duty. First of all, I can't tell you how happy I am that you wrote another story. This is, in terms of what you take on in the chapter, a major step up from the things you've written in the past. Reading it, I can see why you felt the need to chose a new penname. Congratulations, beta dearest, you've reached a whole new level.
In general I like the idea of this story. You set a big challenge for yourself, which you should, because you're that good a writer. I'm warning you in advance that my comments on this are very extreme in both directions. Please bear with me through the criticism and don't take it harshly. You know how honest I am. And rest assured, my criticism will be followed by praise.However… on to criticism: My biggest (and pretty much only) complaint is one issue--clarity. The first two-thirds of the story are incredibly difficult to comprehend. I've seriously read Faulkner that was easier to decipher. As a reader, I had one major problem and one minor problem.
The major problem is the dialogue. I talked to Nan about it and she affirmed my guess that you had purposely left out quotation marks. While I can see why you would want to do so stylistically, it doesn't work. You could use italics instead, but I see your point (also conveyed to me by Nan) that you were using italics in a different way. I agree that italics won't work here; the ending would not work nearly so well because it wouldn't be clear that it was meant differently. I'm guessing that you wanted to leave out the quotation marks to create flow and contrast with the “present” time. Whatever your reasons, I think they are outweighed by the need for clarity. Maybe I'm just ridiculously tired, but I had a difficult time figuring out what was being said out loud and what was being thought, and sometimes even who was speaking. I found myself going back to the beginnings of some paragraphs, which is not a good sign. I know you purposely did not use quotations, but I think you should reconsider. You as the author know who is meant to be speaking what aloud, but without quotation marks it's difficult for the reader, especially the first time through. It makes sense when you go back, but one of your goals as a writer is to write clearly enough that the reader can figure it out on the first read.The minor clarity problem was distinction between different sections and different times. Have several lines gap helps, but as a minor thing it helps to have some marker (# # # separated by a few lines above and below is fairly standard) to signal to the reader that you're moving either backwards or forwards. This didn't actually cause any problems for me, but I can see how it might for some readers, especially as you are telling the story achronologically. It's not a pressing problem, but it is something you might want to consider.
There were also a couple of sentences that didn't make sense to me (again, maybe I'm just tired). She once thought magic was only for faeries and unicorns and mermaids . . . yet, seven years later, she has seen each with her own eyes. Her eyes of magic. Of Hermione. The last two fragments don't work for me. I don't mind fragments (obviously, as I use them in my own writing consistently), or rather I don't mind them as long as the author has a good enough grasp on grammar to use them properly, which you obviously do. I think my problem is “Her eyes of magic.” I'm not sure if it's the 'Her' or the 'of' that's bothering of me, but it doesn't work. I know we're talking about Hermione's eyes here (at least I believe so), but something about how it's phrased bothers me. Maybe Her magical eyes? I'm not sure. But you might want to look at it.Moving on into insane nit-pick land: But she is Hermione, one who must leave to save the world, and she will be forced to have another priority; the fate of the world. It would make a lot more sense grammatically if you had a colon after priority rather than a semicolon. Really minor, I know. How I even find these things… :: cough ::
Okay. Now it's time to shower you with praise. The opening: wham. It has beautiful imagery and impact, dear. What makes it even better is how you come back to it. I really like things that come full circle, and you do it quite nicely. In the beginning it is unified and compact. In the end, it is fragmented and drawn out, which really builds the emotion and heightens the effect. It's both beautiful and difficult to pull off effectively. My love, you are blossoming.“On her knees, sobbing. The ground, hard. Two arms, pulling, supporting, saying more to her than words ever could. Down, then up. Spiraling down, then drifting up. Down, darkness. Up, light.”
The rhythm and cadence are extraordinary. The parallel structure, punctuated and bare of verbs, enhances the power of the emotion. It is at once barren and rhythmic. The structure conveys Hermione's pain and shock very well, and the imagery is also powerful. It's lovely, m'dear.The last section is by far my favorite part. You come back to it with the doorknob, and immediately we know where we are, and we take in the symbolism of the doorknob. We know what it meant to the eleven-year-old child. It's heart wrenching. The symbol of the wall is also extremely powerful. The wall has crumbled again, but this time at a harsh price. Such a powerful line. And once again, you use a motif (this time of the wall). Really good writing, dear, with multiple levels of meaning. How you have grown up…
:: huggles beta ::
Lian! This was so wonderful! *happily goes on squealing about her review* Even if I got hit on the head with clarity and spacing, which I knew someone was going to say something on. Ah well. :PFirst things first: clarity. I saw no quotation marks in a book I read and loved it, so I tried it out in this one. I was trying to put in indicators of who was speaking by adding sirs, ma'ams, Mr and Mrs, etc. Thanks for commenting; I'll go back and try to fix that. You're right about the spacing, though. I'll try more lines between each section, because I still want it to flow and not be interrupted.
On the "her eyes of magic," I was trying to convey how nearly tangible magic is, not just an adjective in describing her. I tried to set it apart and make it a little more independent, and I'm just addicted to fragments. Hehe. And yes, I will go back and change that semicolon. I was unsure whether to use it or not, so I left it be.And oh, the lovely praise. *eyes get misty* . . . hehe. ;) I love symbols and metaphors. Sometimes random things flow out: the doorknob was not planned at all and I just liked the phrase "cold but inviting" so I plugged it in. Thank you much, dearest. This review was beautiful. :: huggles ::