I am a serious Harry Potter fan who, according to one friend, "needs rehab." I like canon-compliant stories and pairings, especially Romione, which is probably evident from my stories.
You will notice I don't use British spellings. I strive to accurately portray British culture in my fics and have my characters (and JK's) behaving in culturally appropriate ways. But spelling and punctuation are tools of the writer, and I'm an American writer. I would feel incredibly pretentious using British spellings.
I almost never review poetry because I don't know enough about the art of writing it to say much that is useful. I clicked on this because I have become a fan of your drabbles, and your summary drew me in. I like it a lot. The last stanza really defines the Dursley we know in canon, but it is a sadder picture you draw here... that the height of his goals, everything he is reaching for, is really rather shallow and must be protected lest his past (completely respectable) be exposed. You made a me feel a bit sorry for him, and that is saying something.Nice poem.
Hey there, Pooja. :) I enjoyed this one-shot and the original drabble as well. I find myself shipping Teddy/Victoire more and more all the time, and this is a sweet little fic. I especially appreciated the way you included his relationship with Andromeda, and how she called him "her baby boy." Good stuff.I enjoyed being in the class with you, and now, reading all the stories that emerged from it. Take care! ~Lori
Natalie, you know I don't review much poetry, but this is such a beautiful and heartbreaking image of George... love the idea of the shimmer to his left and Molly's smile "a half slimmer." So glad you included a bit of hope here at the end. Lovely stuff.
Author's Response: Thank you, Lori, for reading and leaving such a lovely review! :) I love, love receiving reviews from those who generally don't do poems - that makes me feel like I was able to establish the right connections!
I liked this, Alex. Bill and Fleur are a couple I love to read in fanfic, and I like your take here -- that she restrained her own charm to make sure he liked her for who she was, not because he was compelled to. The downside of Veela blood: never knowing if the man really wanted you for you. Nicely done. (Though I'm not sure I can ever feel sorry for a Veela -- haha!)Yes, the end is a bit sugary, but it's no problem for me, as I happen to love the occasional dessert! I see the nargles have attacked your submission. You may already know this, but if you put a space on either side of your dashes, those annoying squares will go away. Just FYI. I enjoyed being in class with you and getting to read your drabbles and discussions. Also nice to see your name on the most recents list again. Take care! ~ Lori
I like this. I don't read much next gen, but I think the kids are interesting here, almost as interesting as Harry. I will definitely be watching for the next installment. Happy writing.
Author's Response: Thank you! I've put this in Post-Hogwarts rather than Next-Gen because the kids aren't really going to be in it much after this chapter and the focus will be on Harry. However, having a chance to play around with their personalities here has made me think about writing a next gen story or two, which I've not been interested in before. The next few chapters should come along fairly swiftly - they are most written, just need a bit of editing and tweaking in places. Thanks for reviewing, I'm glad you enjoyed it. :)
I've just discovered this piece and must tell you I'm enjoying it very much. You found a very intriguing voice for Sirius! I love the way you depicted life at his house and compared it to life with the Potters. And the element of his love for Lily really does amp up the energy of the story... I fear he is in for way more anguish than he even can imagine at this point. Poor Sirius.Your style is compelling. I confess I do not enjoy reading loads of description, and as you stated in your notes, such is necessary when setting up a story that is going to be written on a larger scale. But even with all the description, you've got a rhythm to it that works. It doesn't bog down the fic the way it so often does, in my opinion. I've given up on many a story simply because I was unwilling to wade through all the description and whatnot. But here, you've made it work. The Wizarding World was still bright and full of happiness, save for an incident every couple of months that would remind them of the darkness lurking on their world's underbelly. ... I love this bit, and many others like it, where you've found just the perfect way to express something in an original way. Back to Sirius for a moment... love his behavior in the street so very much, flirting and being dramatic, and teasing about McGonagal. It's exactly as I imagine him and his sense of humor. So good. Two little nitpicks: first, the entirety of chapter one is in bold type, and it's kind of painful (on the eyes) to read. Since your other chapters aren't that way, I assumed this was an accident. Also, you end paragraphs with a comma sometimes when spoken dialogue is the next thing. I'm no beta, but I've never seen that before... anyway, not sure if it's incorrect. Just something I noticed. Really nice work. Chapter two must wait till tomorrow, but I will definitely be back for more. Hope you will be posting a new chapter soon! Happy writing!
Nicole, my fellow Puff! Greetings. I'm so glad this fic was featured. I knew you were planning to finish what you were working on for the romance class, but must have missed this when it came through the queue. I was surprised to see you only had two reviews for this, and then amused after I read them. This is the beauty of how you write: it's so (beautifully) out-of-the-box that readers aren't sure what to do with it. It seems to have provoked a lot of questions, which isn't a bad thing. Style is something readers will always disagree upon as it boils down to personal taste. But I happily own to being a huge, huge fan of the way you write. Your subject matter tends to be darker than what I generally read, but I'm positively addicted to the way you use words. In your hands, they bend and twist until they are inside-out... it's a beautiful, creative way to say what you want to say.This fic was no exception. I like the first-person voice you chose for Scorpius. He must love her but we don't really have that language going on. I found the hug at the sea quite moving and the understated frustration he felt as how reluctant Rose was to be touched. These are flawed characters and unusual ones, too, which you accentuated by giving us Lily-Lou's perspective on it all. Fruitcakes, indeed. At first, I wasn't sure if Rose was real or not. Even thought you used the word ghost, I didn't take you literally since you are the master of metaphor. Plus, Scorpius was obviously drunk and depressed, so I wasn't sure how reliable his perspective was at that point. But once that became clear, the fic did settle into a kind of sadness and remain there. I say "a kind" because Rose's Peeves-like behavior kept the fic from becoming truly depressing, and yet, she's dead and he's alone and uncertain, and if that's not sad, I don't know what is. I felt so sad that Rose chose not to gon, and even sadder for Scorpius. What will this mean for him? Will he never be able to move on from her, I wonder, if she is still there? The fic doesn't need to answer all these questions. Rather, the questions are part of the story. I can't help wondering... Did you consider putting this in D/A? Or did you feel it would get more reads in NG? Just curious, as I think it would have done well in either category. The jumping around in time kept me on my toes. In theory, I think non-linear fics are a great idea, but I am such a linear thinker that they do force me to squint and concentrate more than I usually care to when reading for pleasure. I managed to keep up for the most part in this though. I do think it was effective to begin the way you did, with his return and the party and the discovery of Rose at the window... so the story could not have been told in order. This is probably an unusual review but this fic is unusual, so maybe it's all right. Halfway through, I realized I've never read anything in else in fanfic remotely like this story. Quite an accomplishment, in my estimation, especially for Scorose. I enjoyed this, Nicole, as I did all the work you did for the class. Happy writing! ~Lori
I enjoyed this so much, Neil. Nice work. Especially loved your OC! Congrats on the well-deserved QSQ!
Author's Response: Thank you. It came as something of a surprise.
This is an interesting little fic. I was pulled in right away by the nice flow of your writing and your take on Hannah. She is actually one of my favorite characters, so I had to click on this because there just aren't alot of Hannah-centric fics appearing on the Most Recents. You've especially captured her well in those younger years, which can be hard to do (at least for me), in terms of voice.It's interesting that you chose to have her liking Neville all along, even from before the Yule Ball. I didn't always understand why Michael's love for Terry bothered so much, when she seemed at least as hung up on Neville as she was on Michael that whole time. But really, that's how it is sometimes, especially at that age, when love and crushes are confusing and you aren't really certain what you feel for who at any given time. You know? You captured that uncertainty very well. I have to commend you on the portrayal of Hannah's little brother's grief. My younger brother was actually that exact same age when we lost a parent, and those sentences could have been written about him, exactly. I share that only because I just know how validated I feel when a reader with experience shares that something I wrote bears the ring of truth. And from my perspective, that section was extremely well done and powerful. My only hesitation with the piece at all was that Hannah was so enamored with friends from other houses and there was less mention of her own friends in Hufflepuff. It's not a huge deal, really, as you don't do anything to suggest those relationships weren't there... it's just something that stuck out to me, as she is so often portrayed side-by-side with Ernie and Susan and Justin in canon. The song you used for the title is actually one of my favorite songs right now. It's not every day you see a worship song title popping up in fanfiction (haha), so I was intrigued. I can see how you sprinkled the imagery of the lyrics throughout the piece, especially in the beginning... nicely done. Nice writing on this. We need more Hannah fics in the world.
Nominated for Best Alternate Universe Story and Best Canon Romance in the 2014 Quicksilver Quill Awards.
When you said you were writing AU, I wasn't sure what to expect. It's not a category I read unless something has been particularly recommended or is written by someone whose writing (as in this case) I know I love. Reading this, however, reminds me that any category can be engaging when the characters are right and the story works.I like that you set this in the future, in circumstances that occurred after Harry (I assume) failed in his mission. I'm guessing that Bill and Fleur are around 40 here, but I couldn't help picturing them both as their young, beautiful selves. There were issues you didn't tackle, of course. I hate to consider what happened to all the Weasleys, and part of me wanted you to reveal all of that. But considering the length and focus of the fic, I think you made the right choice in not bogging the story down with all the details of what has to be a heartbreaking tale. I also liked that you kept so many of the details from known canon: Fleur's power over men, her ability to tend the wounded (as she did with Hermione in DH), and her courage to jump in and fight when she needed to do so. You also kept the Horcrux storyline alive, which was a nice surprise, and Bill's tragic bout with the werewolf. I must ask you why you decided to make his attack worse than it was in canon, turning him into an actual werewolf. I think it worked in the fic, but am curious what your thought process was there. My only niggle, and it is such a little one, is that I wanted a little more understanding of Bill's reaction/interest in Fleur. I was so shocked when she kissed him, and there is that moment when he stops and decides, and I just want to know what she thought he was thinking or feeling. What was in his face? It seemed more like he decided to be with her than that he was "under her spell," but I wasn't entirely sure if he was feeling something for her at that point, if it was totally physical attraction, or if he just needed something good to happen. Obviously, you can't tell us his thoughts because it's in her POV, but her take on his thought would have sufficed. I freely admit this probably has much more to do with my crush on Bill Weasley (as you well know) than it does on anything to do with your writing choices. Haha! I really enjoyed this, Minna. But I'm not a bit surprised. Your stuff never disappoints. Great writing!
As for it being the future, er, that's one part where I had trouble developing something - I didn't make the circumstances of Harry's defeat clear enough. This is actually set in 2000, and Harry and Lily and James all died on Halloween 1981. The hope of a single savior was snuffed out before it even came close to being realized, and instead people with no inherent magical/prophetical advantage over Voldemort had to pull together and try to save the world instead. I tried to cover all that with "He killed all the candidates...Well, so what. We've still got a choice: run, or fight." So, uh, you were quite right to picture them as their young, beautiful selves...
I also failed a bit with developing the relationship, oops. This is something I'm still trying to learn, so thanks for the feedback there, especially the things you wish you'd seen.
I'm happy to learn you liked it despite its shortcomings, and your quibbles were helpful. Reviews like this mean a lot to me. Thanks for taking the time to write it. :)
Carole, you've done it again. You've taken two seemingly random characters and made them work together. I didn't doubt you, but I do have a bit of an attachment to Terry, and as such, was crinkling my nose at him "settling" for Pansy. But you made it work, as you always do.There's something in canon about Draco that makes him more redeemable. We see how his parents treat him, how little choice he seems to have at times (not excusing him, mind you), and how he struggles with himself over and over, sometimes even doing the right thing. And so he is ripe for a redemption story, and we have all written them. In contrast, I can't think of a single redeeming thing about Pansy in canon. She is hateful, the mean girl that everyone hated in high school, and what more could there possibly be to her? I like that you used this very contrast, between Draco and her, to show how unfair it is that Draco is eligible for redemption and Pansy is not. That was so well done, and the choice to have it pointed out by a friend was even better. Because as the reader, I agreed with them both. I'd read enough to believe Pansy shouldn't be defined by what she did in the battle, and yet, Anthony speaks truth, too. You handled it all so very well. It was important that you didn't minimize her crime either, but instead drew it out to its conclusion: Voldemort Might Have Won. I think her realizing this was important for her character development and for her being able to move forward with Terry. Beautiful twist in having Terry's scar be the result of a drunken night when we all (including Pansy) assumed it was the badge of a hero. Hilarious turn, and I was grinning as I read. I was reminded as I sank into this that I haven't read anything from in a while, and I've missed it. You have such a flow, such a good word choice all the time... every word is necessary, nothing ever in need of editing, and I find myself envious of that skill when I read your stories. So good. :) I think we've discussed creative/unusual structuring in fics before, such as the frequent use of parentheses, so you know I'm not uaually a fan. They can be off-putting or distracting or something. But I can see why you chose to use them here, particularly to indicate a flashback or an aside in Terry's thoughts. We should chat about this sometime, as I'm wondering if you lean toward including them as part of your style of writing these days, or if you rather think certain fics lend themselves to it. Either way, it worked well here. Great story, Carole. You made me think Pansy could deserve Terry, and that is quite an accomplishment. Hehe.
This is really good stuff. Deathly Hallows is my favorite of the books, so I love a story that sinks into that time and explores something new about it -- in this case, Draco's POV regarding Luna and the events that followed her capture.Your writing is vivid. I like your style... just enough description without bogging the fic down with scads of it. You captured both Luna and Draco well. Draco, in particular, is hard to get just right, I think, especially in this time, when we know what he was up to. I can't think how many times I've read the book and seen the movies, and yet, it never really struck me that Draco would have been on the train for Luna's abduction AND in his cellar by the time he got home on the same day. I absolutely love the way you explored that. Draco's reaction balanced with his own fear and survival instincts was just perfect. There were some powerful images here... Luna in the cellar looking like a portrait in a frame, Harry's frantic breathing in his ears, the Dark Lord's invading Draco's thoughts. Really nice writing. In fact, I know I've read and enjoyed some of your other fics, but this one is especially striking to me. Well done. I'll mention one thing and you can take it or leave it, as it's merely a suggestion. You frequently write "Draco felt sick" or "Draco felt empty nausea wash over him." It's fine how it is, but I think the word "felt" can deflate a sentence sometimes because you are telling us rather than showing us. Without the word, the latter sentence could be "Empty nasea rolled in Draco's stomach." Again, it may just be a preference of mine, but I think the second version packs a stronger punch. Great stuff. And now... on to chapter two. :) ~ Lori