Reviews For Black Betrayed
Reviewer: Insecurity
Date: 03/22/08 16:19
Chapter: Chapter 1

Firstly, HUGE apology for not writing you a review last session, laptop woes and essay deadlines stole me away. I read this story last month and it really intrigued me; it’s a very interesting spin on the Unbreakable Vow scene and you did a good job blending in the flashbacks to the rest of the story. Bellatrix/Severus is a pairing I have been curious about for some time, and you’ve certainly explored the chemistry between them and convinced me that they could work together.

The dialogue between Bellatrix and Severus is the core of the story, and in places it is very intense and thought-provoking. I loved their hostility towards each other, after the Unbreakable Vow was made, and how you contrast that to the playful, flirty interaction of former times. You do need to be careful, though, about what they say and how you structure an intense and crucial conversation. Severus describes Bellatrix as a ‘lovely woman’ at one point – something I doubt he would do, even when he was younger, unless the statement was heavily ironic. Furthermore, Bellatrix describes how the Unbreakable Vow is ‘all very dodgy’ – a phrase that sounds too mellow, and a little too clumsy, for Bellatrix. It’s these small moments that disengaged me from the mood of the story. Also, be careful not to clog your story up with too much dialogue after dialogue, otherwise it runs the risk of reading like a script. You can build up the tension, too, by describing facial expression and physical reactions, and don’t be scared to explore the environment around the characters because that can help establish the mood. You do a good job at the beginning describing Spinner’s End and Bellatrix’s dislike for it, so you could have developed this further.

You have your work cut out with these two characters to make a romance believable, because JKR has Severus as such an introvert and Bellatrix as such a distasteful character. Naturally, we do not see them as romantic. There were moments where you built this up well, but other times when I felt things were not thoroughly thought through. You describe Snape as quite handsome, with silky rather than oily hair. We all know he was an awkward and not conventionally attractive character from Books 5 and 6, so this seemed to me like you were cutting corners and changing his looks, rather than using his personality, to make him attractive. Also, though you have this as an intense romance between the two, Lucius is mentioned as the one who provided the wine. It shifts the focus away from the two characters and because of that the reader could become distracted by details. It’s important when framing a scene like this that every minute detail is planned out to build on the romance and occaisonally add a deeper meaning to it. Any details that take away from this, should be weaned out and left for other, less intense scenes.

They seem to ‘go upstairs’ because they’ve run out of things to say to one another. Be careful with this! It might be true to real life but it isn’t what readers are looking for in a romance, and you can easily run into the trap of ‘taking things to the next level’ just because you, as a writer, aren’t sure how to develop the relationship further. You also say that Bellatrix loved him. For any other character this would carry some weight, but you need to really, really develop Bellatrix’s human side and their relationship in order to make it believable between Severus and Bellatrix. It’s something that would be difficult to achieve in a one-shot. Don’t feel pressured to achieve everything in a short story, because if you try to achieve too great s range of themes then they could all end up having too little depth.

Having said this, I loved how post-Azkaban Bellatrix had all the bitterness and spite of her canon character, and I believe this one-shot is very entertaining for those who love a dark romance. It’s a story I would love to see expanded on more.

Lau x

Reviewer: Icee787
Date: 12/16/07 18:28
Chapter: Chapter 1

That was great! You should write a Snape/ Bellatrix romance fic! Good story!

* Icee787 *

Author's Response: Thanks! If you Snape/Bella, you should definitely check out Sly Severus. She has a bunch of Snape/Bella, and hers are amazing.

Reviewer: GreyLady
Date: 11/25/07 21:12
Chapter: Chapter 1

First off, congratulations on being the SPEWly featured author! =)

This is quite an unusual pairing. Canon Severus and Bellatrix would have interesting dynamics in a romantic relationship, I think. They're both exceptionally strong-willed, powerful, passionate, and insane in their own ways (though Bellatrix clearly much more so than Severus).

You did a good job at capturing some of their most intriguing characteristics. Bellatrix is entertainingly venomous and blunt, and Severus has a biting dark humor and certain suaveness about him. I liked the ending image of Bellatrix glaring back at him and adored Severus's line, “What is it — woman’s intuition? I never expected that from you; I thought you had to have some sort of soul for that.” (A note, though - “it” would be better replaced with “this.”)

However, there were several flaws in characterization that I noticed, mostly concerning Bellatrix. (Though, I was thrown off by the line stating that Severus was handsome as a teenager when, regrettably, he just...wasn't.) What leapt out at me about Bellatrix was that she seemed too meek and innocuous at moments, such as when she said “it's all very dodgy” and “it was probably no one any good.” They just didn't seem like Bellatrix things to say at all.

There were also some wordings that I found awkward, and scattered errors, such as: “Bellatrix could only do so much for her. Her patience was already being tested; first going to visit Snape and then creating an Unbreakable Vow between her sister and him.” Ending the sentence “her sister and him” is an uncomfortable. It would be better worded as “herself and Snape.” Also, a question mark would be suitable at the end of this sentence in the context that it's found.

“If the Dark Lord knew that she was sitting here, trying to defy his orders, she would be in more trouble than she needed.” If you got rid of “trying” and simply used “defying” instead, the verb would be much stronger. Also, the last part of the sentence might make more sense as “even more trouble,” getting rid of “than she needed.”

“Have my reasons not sufficed you?” This is grammatically correct if “you” is removed.

Also, I found the transitions between your backflashes and the present a bit abrupt – just thought I'd throw that out there.

Overall, this is a respectable and interesting story. It's always nice to see other Severus lovers out there!

Author's Response: Thanks! It was originally drabble that made into a one-shot after adding in the flashback scenes. Bellatrix was difficult to write; it's hard to understand her motives behind things sometimes. Thanks for you critique - I'll try to work everything. ~ Teresa

Author's Response: Thanks! It was originally drabble that made into a one-shot after adding in the flashback scenes. Bellatrix was difficult to write; it's hard to understand her motives behind things sometimes. Thanks for you critique - I'll try to work everything. ~ Teresa

Reviewer: Penna4
Date: 09/01/07 19:20
Chapter: Chapter 1

Wow, that was the best story I have read in awhile. I liked how it was shippy, but it didn’t over do it. I think it was great how you stayed true to Bellatrix’s character and didn’t make her forgive him in the end. I also liked how you made her have feelings. In addition, I just thought that the whole idea of it was great. The plot was amazing. I liked how it showed what Snape did to get back the Order’s trust and everything. Also, I liked his reaction. He wouldn’t look at her after what he had done. Overall, it was really great. It was so enjoyable to read, and it was refreshing to read a realistic fanfic haha.

-Elizabeth


Author's Response: Thanks! I'm glad you liked it.

Reviewer: radishearrings3
Date: 07/17/07 14:36
Chapter: Chapter 1

That was good! Bellatrix and Snape where very in character, which is hard to do sometimes, and overall, I really liked your story.

Author's Response: Thanks!

Reviewer: sam_1034_lily
Date: 07/12/07 22:23
Chapter: Chapter 1

different but gud

Author's Response: Thanks!

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