Penname: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor [Contact]
Real name: Jessica
Member Since: 08/29/09
Website:
Beta-reader: Yes
Status: Administrator
Bio:

I am a recent member of the Harry Potter fandom, but I have always had a passion for the written word, and I hope to fulfill it here. I live in a relatively boring corner of Idaho, and I like Kokanee and a good book!

So, I suppose you're wondering what's up with my username. Even if you're not, this is how that happened. No, I was not aspiring to be a Gryffindor. I can't think of any house to which I would belong less than Gryffindor, in fact. It was a moment of clarity that I got while I was battling with myself about whether I should want to be Sorted into Gryffindor to be like Harry or to be Sorted elsewhere and follow my own path. I thought it to be much like the contemplative scene in Hamlet when he weighed taking his own life. I'm not trying to be melodramatic. That's simply is what popped into my head when I was trying to sign up to leave a review. :D

Any questions or comments about my work? Please shoot me an email at: tobeornottobeagryffindor@mugglenet.com — I'd love to hear from you!


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Reviews by ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor
 

Summary:

We are all influenced by the actions or inactions of our parents. The same is true of Scorpius Malfoy; he has been raised by an overly protective mother and a father who is still coming to grips with the mess that his own father made of his life. Scorpius knows that he will be judged at Hogwarts by what others know or think they know about his father and grandfather.

At Hogwarts Scorpius will meet:

Albus Potter the middle child of ‘The Great Harry Potter’ and Quidditch star Ginny Weasley Potter. A boy who not only has things to live up to but an older brother ready to remind him of who’s boss.

Rose Weasley, Albus’ surrogate sister/first cousin, struggling in her own way, not her mother’s way, to succeed.

Kaitlin Jones, daughter of Tornados player Owain Jones and favorite niece of Gwenog Jones, who is at home on a broom and lost almost everywhere else.

Jimber Dokes recent immigrant from the West Indies trying to fit his own magical heritage Vardoo with the Western style of magic taught at the school

Thad Vance, the Gryffindor Quidditch captain, his grandfather and all of his uncles and aunts were killed by Death Eaters, maybe Lucius Malfoy

Meanwhile in London, Draco and Astoria Malfoy try to build a new life and legacy by betting all they own on a Potions Shop in Diagon Alley.

Beta Reader - Apurva Patel Chapters 1-3

Carol Paquette Chapter 1

Hogwartsbookworm Chapter 4-15

In memory of my Father Horace McConnell 1934-2010



Categories: Next Generation Genre: Warnings: None

Word count: 44992 Chapters: 15 Completed: Yes
Published:
08/25/10 Updated: 06/18/11


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 09/05/10 Title: Chapter 1: Chapter 1 - Encounters on the Platform

Hello there. :D

I'm Jess and the resident lurker. I just saw your story in the Most Recent list and decided, after reading your fantastic summary, that I just had to check it out.

I myself have delved into the realm of Next-Generation quite extensively, so it's interesting to see where others see our favourite characters ending up. Your Draco is case in point. 

I like his voice. The way you have structured and worded his thoughts was very well-done. Traditionally, Draco is a judgmental little jerk, and it's good to see that you didn't leave that out completely. The best example is when he first encounters the Dokes, his first thought was 'Mudbloods' and how much he really wished they wouldn't come too near him. Now, I don't think Draco would really feel this way still after all this time, but it wouild end up being more of  a reflex than anything. I thought that part was very well done.

Inversely, in that opening scene, there were a few things I wasn't too sure about. First off, you have Astoria meeting Draco as a first-year and a fifth-year respectively, but, canonically, Astoria is only two years Draco's junior. It's not a big deal or anything, but you may want to make a note of it in case other canon drum beaters (you know...like me :D ) bring it up. The second part of that very same paragraph is more of what I wanted to bring up. Draco held Astoria's hand and smiled at her. As far as I can tell, Draco at Hogwarts would have never, ever, ever, ever, ever done anything of the sort, especially if the person was younger that him and therefore of no use to him. I know it doesn't sound like much, but attention to this sort of detail is what sets apart a good fic from a great fic. The story you have set up has the makings of greatness, especially with the characters you've crafted in your summary alone. It would be awesome for this story to do well.

Another qualm that I had that isn't so minor is the overall narrative voice. There were times during the opening of the chapter that I truly had no idea whose head we were in. 'Head hopping', more affectionately known as Third Person Omniscient is generally considered a no-no, but in this story, it's actually fitting. The problem lies with clearly defining whose head you're in, who's thinking. Several paragraphs, no matter how many times I read them, I truly had no idea. The most glaring example was this: 

 Dokes smiled. Draco stopped, caught his breath and in a soft voice added, “However, I must warn you that Draco’s grandfather was a criminal who has paid his debt, as they say. Yet some will not easily forgive. If your son were to travel with my son, he might get painted with the same brush.”

I think this is Draco's narrative voice, but I'm not sure. I'm not saying that you should, by any means, go back and rip it all apart and re-write it, but perhaps, in the future, you might want to be wary of confusing the reader. 

I'm also a little bit put off by the use of substitutes for a person's name in writing. For instance, in the second to last paragraph, in reference to Professor Longbottom, he was termed as 'the man', 'the teacher', 'the professor', and 'Longbottom. This is somewhat of a device for us writers to employ in order to avoid repetitiveness, but instead of gaining the desired result, it just looks sort of sloppy. Using this method here and there is fine, but that many usages in one paragraph pushes on the extreme and is offputting to readers. It's like using terms like 'the Slytherin', 'the blonde', and 'Malfoy' instead of Draco. There are a good number of Malfoys, even more Slytherins, and definitely more blondes. It's just makes for better habits to refer to characters by their names. Getting creative to avoid rampant repetitiveness in other ways is a good challenge.

Another thing. In the beginning, Scorpius is wearing black silk robes, yet Draco had only two Galleons to send to school with his son. I know appearances have and always will matter to Draco, but that seems to be slightly on the realm of impractical. I know it's a matter of my own personal preference, but I don't see Draco's need to keep up appearances extending that far. If they were just plain black robes like everyone else's, the thought would have never occurred to me. 

Okay, so, by now, you're probably like, "Who is this person and what is she on about?" I'm just trying to impart some lessons that I had learnt the hard way by receiving some rather unsavory reviews and harsh comments on my work. They've shaped me into a much better writer, and I want to share that experience with everyone, but without the sting that such things can bring along with them. I'm an open book in that regard.

Now, after that bit of crit (rhyming not intentional), I would love to get back to the fun stuff--talking Malfoy!

I really like the way you've portrayed Scorpius. He doesn't seem as judgmental as Draco, which speaks volumes of how much Draco has tried to better himself as a human being and the amount of growing up that he had done before having a child. I also like that he sees his father as his source of everything important. Several times, he had brought up in his personal narrative something that Draco had told him to watch for, and he, the dutiful son, did so. It shows how, no matter how much Draco tried to stray from Lucius's example of fatherhood, that mark of respect for the father figure still remained in the Malfoy family. It really speaks of reality to me, which is something that these wizarding families that people portray in their fan fiction sometimes lack for me as a reader. 

Jimber is also a interesting character. He owns this open, bald honesty that is shocking to Scorpius, like when he was discussing how badly Hagrid's dog stank and about a similarly-smelling dog in his homeland. It's obvious that Jimber is proud of this memory, which leads me to believe that his upbringing is not unlike Scorpius's and that there might be a very good reason why the Dokes are no longer in their native country and are in London instead. I can't wait to find out.

I also am anxious to see more of your Rose. I always had her pegged as much more outspoken, but she seems more like a young Ginny to me--quiet but quick to defend her hero. I'm curious to see which direction you take with her.

All in all, you have a fantastic start to this story, and I will definitely be checking out any further updates you produce, plus possibly visiting your author page to check out your Luna stories. Thank you for reading this far, and have a lovely day!

~Jess



Author's Response: Thanks for you comments. My POV confusion and misuse of commas has driven multiple beta-readers crazy and one into retirement. I did not find the information about Astoria's age until after I'd submitted the story. I've adjusted the paragraph in this chapter and a future reference in an upcoming chapter between Astoria and the Dokes. As for Rose, I've always had trouble with finding Hermione's voice. It wasn't until I wrote a chapter in my unpublished story Gwenog Jones and the Seduction of Ginevra Weasley(my fourth story attempt) did I find my inner Hermione. Granger was an only child. Rose is the older child of her family and is also surrounded a sea by Weasley cousins. She grew up going from reading books recommended by her mother to playing in the rough and tumble games of Quidditch at family get-togethers. I see Rose as a very reflective and more socially attune Hermione with a touch of Weasley sass. If you follow the story, you will find Draco mentally praising Rose's goal keeper skills while at the same time downgrading her father's skill. (Writing Draco can be such fun) Thanks for you comments, my second chapter is under review and my third chapter just got returned by my beta-reader .+.HjMc+.+

 

Frozen Silence by Equinox Chick
Rated: 1st-2nd Years [Reviews - 4]

Summary: A poem (nay, a tritina!) written about the last moments of Sirius Black's death.

Disclaimer: Although I may want to own Sirius Black (and often claim he's my husband), he does in fact belong to JK Rowling.

Categories: Poetry Genre: Warnings: Character Death

Word count: 112 Chapters: 1 Completed: Yes
Published:
09/15/10 Updated: 09/15/10


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 09/15/10 Title: Chapter 1: Frozen Silence

Ah, such a lovely poem with awesome flow. I like how you have crafted the Veil to be a living, breathing entity that almost feeds on its victims.

Very well done, EQ. I tried to submit mine, but I was like 17 words short. I may have to fluff the word count a little by 'explaining' the tritina. :D

*hugs*

~Jessssssss



Author's Response: Thank you 2B *giggles*. Yes, I had to explain my tritina and pay tribute to Natalie and Julia in the content because I was 35 words short *sigh* ~Carole~

 

What Lies Behind by C_A_Campbell
Rated: 6th-7th Years [Reviews - 28]

Summary: Past Featured StoryWinner of the 2011 QSQ Award for Best Dark/Angsty One-shot! It is true what they say about your life flashing before your eyes just before you die. As Theodore Nott, Death Eater like his father before him, stands on the battlefield in what is surely Hogwarts and his final hours, he remembers all that lays behind him: his father, the Dark Lord, the one girl he ever loved, and the thing he has forced himself to forget.

But you remember, don't you, Theodore?

Please tell me you remember me.


Categories: Dark/Angsty Fics Genre: Warnings: Abuse, Character Death, Mild Profanity, Violence

Word count: 9871 Chapters: 1 Completed: Yes
Published:
09/15/10 Updated: 09/17/10


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 09/19/10 Title: Chapter 1: Do you remember?

Greetings!

Oh, I do so adore fics that give a life and a story to characters that slip through the cracks. There are few characters that are more on a nonentity in Harry’s Hogwarts class than Theo Nott and Lisa Turpin. Now, I’ve always had my own ideas about them, but for the moment, I’m going to focus on this brilliant little world that you’ve created for the two of them.

I get Theo. I don’t mean that I see him and understand what he’s like; I truly can commiserate with the sort of person he was during school. I suppose that’s why your characterisation of him is so powerful to me, for he holds the power of nothing. The fact that he is so very unapologetically so is just so striking. It’s a brave move to make your protagonist someone that one shouldn’t notice and/or care about, but you did and it was brilliant.

One thing that was odd was the sequence through which you flashed back in his life. However, the order of the memories had to be the way they were for the ending not to be all…’yeah, I knew that was coming’. Hmm…that made more sense in my head. I guess what I mean is that generally, non-chronological flashbacks are generally a no-no, but in this case, it was perfect. Okay, that is more what I meant to say, lol.

Lisa. Lisa, Lisa, Lisa. I liked that she was nerdy and extremely average-looking. She instantly became every boy’s first real crush, that nerdy girl that loved chess club too much. She wasn’t the brave, fiery Gryffindor girl who spat in the face of anyone who wore green and silver; she was quiet and unassuming, not unlike Theo. It is these qualities that make her such a rich and valuable character for your story and the way it plays out. You took naught but a name and gave her an identity, and that is so fantastic how you did it.

Theodore Sr…man, what a bastard. I truly hated the man from the first couple of paragraphs. I wanted him to die a horrible death, because I knew he had something to do with how damaged Theo was. To think that you could elicit such a reaction from me—and I don’t get that way often—speaks of the level of care and precision that you must have taken while writing this story. His sheer evil and selfishness toward is own end just made him the perfect villain. Voldemort is what he is, and everyone knows that. He hides nothing. But Theodore…he is the true face of what evil means, couching his own agenda in his supposed fatherly love and care. For that, he may rot in hell with Bellatrix and Milli Vanilli. I hope that in your personal canon for this story, someone eventually shot him in the face with a Blasting Curse or something vile.

And last but not least, Evelyn. Nothing on this planet surpasses the amount of love she held for her precious little boy. I had a feeling that the subtle questions throughout the story were from her, and I was pleased to see that I was right. Had it been his ‘conscience’, it might have ruined the potency of the story, but you did beautifully. So very much so. She wasn’t some spineless pushover, even though she tried to be one for Theo’s sake, but in the end, she knew that Theo needed her to be strong and take him away. The fact that she didn’t succeed doesn’t lessen this, either. In fact, it strengthens it.

In the end, though, I think Theo learnt to be strong from his mother. He knew that Voldy was going to kill him, and he didn’t care. He didn’t beg for his life like Draco would have done, and he didn’t give the Dark Lord the satisfaction of his pain. He put on his best ‘screw you’ face and let them do their worst. And for that, you’ve just made him one of my most favourite characters in fan fiction.

Plodding along, I shall address one more thing. I will freely admit that, when I first opened the story, I was intimidated by the idea of reading an almost 10K word fic in second person. In fact, I have a hard time making myself read a 1K word fic in second person, as it is probably my least favourite perspective. That being said, as I was chatting with Elené pretty much the entire time she was betaing this story, I was on the front lines of how much she completely raved about this story. Now, I didn’t know it was in second person, but that thought didn’t leave me as I told myself, “You can do this.”

I don’t think I’ve read any of your stuff before, so I was a bit…unsure about delving into second person of this magnitude, but I am so very glad I did. Your power to evoke emotional responses with what you write is so good that it’s almost orgasmic. I mean, you expect this sort of thing from non-fiction writing about people who saved the world with a ball of string and a prayer or something like that; but you did it telling the story of someone who was in a void throughout much of his life. That brings me to the conclusion of: holy crap, you’re good.

That’s all from me. This story was brilliant and a half, and I will endeavour to remember this far down the line when it comes time to nominate for next year’s QSQs, because this story is completely capable of winning one. Thanks for making it this far, and I hope my air raid bombing of ‘squee’ didn’t send you ducking under a couch somewhere…I hear there’s a hippogriff under there that will peck at your face. :D

Take care and happy writing,

~Jess

P.S. — Go Eagles!


Author's Response: I too adore minor characters and stories focused around them. It just feels that Harry, Ron, Hermione and people like them have already had their stories told, and I love writing the untold stories. I would love to hear your opinions on Theo and Lisa, and I'm glad you enjoyed my characterization of them so well. About the order of the memories. I have a tendency to be a bit of a rebel when it comes to writing rules (well that ones that aren't about grammar and Mary-Sues and such -- I'm a big supporter of them). So though I know flashbacks are supposed to go in order, I ignored it. Not just because of the impact on the story but because I don't believe that's the way PEOPLE think of memories.People's minds are always filled with random thoughts and strange emotions and memories that generally don't follow a proper timeline. People are messy; sometimes writing should be too. (I hope that made sense, lol. But it probably didn't.) Lisa, Lisa, Lisa, hm? I never really gave much thought to her before I chose to put her into this story. I chose her because all we knew about her was that she was a Ravenclaw. And I liked the idea of placing Theodore with someone smart, as honestly I don't think he would have patience or be captivated by someone who was less intelligent, like he was with her. Her personality stemmed from wanting to avoid as many cliches as possible. As you said, the fiery Gryffindor. It seems that the only girls with any real romance were these girls. (Lily, Ginny, even Hermione). It would say these are the typical girls you see in most romance books, even outside of Harry Potter and especially in the fanfiction world. Maybe it's just me, but I get tired of those sort of characters. Not to mention I avoid cliches at all cost. I wanted Lisa to be kind and non-overbearing, and very very smart, if a bit shy. Theodore being the hesitant person he is would be able to be drawn to her, without being intimidated like he would have with a fiery Gryffindor. Besides, her character wasn't too difficult for me to create. She sort of just stepped onto the page and said, "This is who I am; write me" while twirling that piece of hair. It seems most of the characters I work with do that, and I do my best to stay out of their way. Concerning Nott Sr, I agree with absolutely everything you said. If it hadn't been for him and the pressure he placed upon Theodore, can you imagine what Theodore might have become? I say in the story Theodore had his choice, and he did, but he would never have been forced into such a horrible decision if it hadn't been for his father. As for my personal canon, I know in this story I left it where he didn't die, and though it would be sweet justice if he was killed or at least thrown into Azkaban (though even that would be too merciful for the likes of him) I'm not the sort of person who believes in happy endings. As you might tell in the way this story ended, with so much death (though Theo did find the peace he couldn't have in life in the next). I don't believe evil is ever completely vanquished. Theodore Sr. deserves to die, but too often true evil gets away, wearing its mask of sheep's clothing. And Theodore was indeed that wolf. But one day, I'm sure he got his just reward. Maybe not at that battle or in his life, but certainly in the next. Can you imagine? Him seeing his wife and son and that "Mudblood" all living happily, while he is left a broken and withering soul and is taken to a place where there is no mercy for the wicked, and no mask that can save him. And THAT would be much sweeter vengeance. As for Evelyn being the voice, I just couldn't have it being Theodore's conscience. It would seem out of character for him, seeing as he silenced his conscience for so long, but he could never silence his mother, whispering to him from the other side where she waited for him. Yes, she did indeed love him, and I'm glad you picked up the person she was and I wanted her to be. And you're perfectly right that Theodore learned his strength from his mother. Theodore wasn't his father's son; he was his mother's through and through. About second person. I think this and the tiny drabble it started is the only thing I've written in second perspective, but I like testing myself and trying new styles. I realize it is the least common, and I probably would have run the other way if I had seen so long of a fic written like this. But I'm so glad you didn't. And Elene had high praise for me, certainly, but I had no idea she was raving about it. I'm truly flattered. Really. By her and by everything you've said. Really I cannot say thank you enough for all your wonderful compliments. I am certainly not hiding under the couch by your squee, though I'm sure it would be a nice place. I personally would have loved a stuffed animal like Feathers. Thank you again. So very much. Happy writing to you as well, fellow Claw! Chante'

 
Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 09/19/10 Title: Chapter 1: Do you remember?

Oh! I realised one thing that jolted me out of a sound sleep in its intensity.

 “This is what you plan to do, Evelyn?” he asks, his voice vicious. “Stun me and leave with my son.”

and

Your father begins to climb to his feet, but your spell is quick. “Stupefy!

 

This parallel is just...ahhhhhhh! Made of win! Theo's mother thought that she could just stun Theodore Sr. and leave, and Theo thought that he could just Stun him and leave. Neither succeeded. Wow, that is a wonderful little nugget to plant in there. :D

I'm tired and probably not making any sense, so I'll just shut up now. *Iugs*

~Jess

 

Ariana by inspirations
Rated: 1st-2nd Years [Reviews - 2]

Summary: Who killed Ariana Dumbledore? This is about the pain, the guilt, the not knowing.

Categories: Poetry Genre: Warnings: Character Death, Violence

Word count: 174 Chapters: 1 Completed: Yes
Published:
09/17/10 Updated: 09/19/10


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 09/19/10 Title: Chapter 1: Ariana

Hello there.

Yeah, um...wow. Just...wow. If ever repetition was unnoticeable, this is it. I read through it, in awe the entire time, and I completely forgot that it was a tritina until I read yoru chapter notes. That is how much you rock.

I have no idea how I won that challenge, because your poem is pure grace and elegance. Gah, this review is turning out stupid and rambly, but I love this poem so much. I'm also excited to be its first read and review. :D

Take care and happy writing, 

~Jess



Author's Response: LOL, thanks Jess. -squishes- And don't put your poem down, because it definitely deserved first place! :D xx

 

A Clock on the Face of Hell by IdSayWhyNot
Rated: 6th-7th Years [Reviews - 5]

Summary: Fate was sealed that night. I was to live and fight, to breathe and conquer. The night I died and lived England celebrated the end of the nightmare that had yet to begin and praised the baby they would later fear and hate. I am Harry Potter. I am legend.

Categories: Alternate Universe Genre: Warnings: Alternate Universe, Book 7 Disregarded, Character Death, Epilogue? What Epilogue?, Mild Profanity, Sexual Situations, Strong Profanity, Violence

Word count: 11411 Chapters: 2 Completed: No
Published:
09/18/10 Updated: 10/03/10


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 10/08/10 Title: Chapter 2: The Devil and the Clock

I put this story on my reading list the moment the prologue came through the queue because it was just too off-the-wall not to. Sometimes, it's cool to step into the realm of the strange and unusual to see what might have been, and though it seems cruel of me, I think I like seeing this mirror into a parallel universe where all was not well.

There are several fascinating implements in this story, starting with the idea of a sort of giant time turner, and ending with the bizarre magic that made it work.

There were times that Harry's characterisation seemed off, but then I had to stop and think that this is simply a different kind of story that required a different viewpoint, one that commiserated with a lost and broken Harry who had been too jaded by the world to be 'just Harry' anymore. 

I am curious, though...why Flitwick? Was his presence picked for a significant purpose, or did he just pop into your mind as someone you wanted to use? It by no means affects my view on the story, but I do admit to wondering.

All in all, despite being wildly different than anything that I've ever read before, this fic is really interesting, and I shall continue to read updates. Normally, I would go into more detail as to my kudos and qualms, but it's half three in the morning, and I can't be arsed to review properly at this juncture. Do forgive me. :D

Cheers and happy writing!

~Jess

 

What We Lost in the War by solemnlyswear_x
Rated: 1st-2nd Years [Reviews - 10]

Summary: Susan Bones reflects on coming home.

Categories: General Fics Genre: Warnings: None

Word count: 1070 Chapters: 1 Completed: Yes
Published:
09/19/10 Updated: 09/19/10


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 09/20/10 Title: Chapter 1: Chapter 1

What is this? Melissa's back on the Most Recent Page?

Okay, I'll shut up now. I really like the tone of this story. It's not like a narration so much as Susan's streaming thoughts. The way you brougth that about with the little notes in parentheses seems to me like these losses and changes were sparked by a reminder and hence inserted there. That adds to the way the perspective suits the story.

I think my favourite line is when she tells Justin to not be a fatass and pass the pudding. She probably wouldn't have said that a year prior, which adds tothe meaning of your last parenthetical part about gaining some things despite what they've lost. 

I really appreciate the flow with which the story reads. You put a lot of meaning into 1000 words, and that sort of brevity is something that still escapes me (as you've no doubt noticed). 

Cheers and happy writing. I look forward to further appearances on the MR list. :D

~Jesssssss (masquerading as a Slytherin because my House members are embarrassing us in the Reference Desk; now taking open applications to be abducted into another house...oh, and I'll shut up now XD )

 

A Friendship Broken by mudbloodproud
Rated: 6th-7th Years [Reviews - 8]

Summary: *”Not if he thought I was the spy, Peter,” said Lupin. “I assume that’s why you didn’t tell me, Sirius?” he said casually over Pettigrew’s head.

“Forgive me, Remus,” said Black.

“Not at all, Padfoot, old friend,” said Lupin, who was now rolling up his sleeves. “And will you, in turn, forgive me for thinking you were the spy?”

“Of course,” said Black, and the ghost of a grin flitted across his gaunt face…*



Those words, spoken between two old friends, lead one to wonder why two friends could have ever suspected each other of being a traitor. What could have happened once they left school to make them distrust each other?


**Quote is directly from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – Chapter 19 – The Servant of Lord Voldemort - page 273


Everything you recognize belongs to J. K. Rowling. I am just thankful to be able to play in her world for a little while.


This story is dedicated to Carole. She gave me the prompt to inspire my muse again and without her, I think my muse would still be in hiding. Carole, thank you for bring back the voices in my head. And your invaluable Brit-picking.

I must also thank Bine for doing a quick and valuable beta job for me on this. Muse wasn’t interested in making sure it was all correct, she just wanted to write.



Categories: Marauder Era Genre: Warnings: Character Death, Strong Profanity, Violence

Word count: 8560 Chapters: 2 Completed: No
Published:
09/26/10 Updated: 10/10/10


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 10/08/10 Title: Chapter 1: Distrust and Trust Misplaced

Ooh, Terri, what a wonderful coincidence!

Hehe. :D This is a very nice example of positing a scenario that has very good opportunity to be true. I think Sirius's distrust of Remus was well-explained, and the natural leap for him was to suspect Remus after he left so suddenly. The others didn't agree because they never truly believed that there was a traitor in the first place, let alone that it could be Remus. 

I think you did a fabulous job making Peter nondescript and unassuming. He seems the bumbling idiot sometimes in fanon, but anyone who is capable of hoodwinking the entire Order for a year is definitely not an idiot. The bit where he was the first to ask how they were going to go about protecting the Potters was excellent foreshadowing of how the events ended up occurring canonically.

My only real nitpick is that there are times in the dialogue when common contractions aren't used, which make the characters' speech sound more robotic than fluid and natural. It's nothing big, but I'd be a complete fail of a reviewer if I didn't point out things that bothered me, as well as what I liked.

All in all, this is an excellent story, and I can't wait for your muse to gift us with the other half. And what the hell was Remus doing with the werewolves?!

Ta and wonderful story. :D

~Jess



Author's Response: Jess,

Thank you for your review. Ah, contractions... I am so careful when I write Dumbledore to never use them, that other characters tend to suffer for a lack of them. Though I detest Peter, writing him as an idiot or just comic relief would not be true to the whole Marauder characterisation. So, I do always spend time putting little things in that make him seem more Marauderish. {is that even a real word? LOL}

Muse has Remus' half done, but my poor beta isn't feeling well, so it is delayed in coming back. But now muse has an idea for a final chapter, so I guess I will be writing a third chapter to this.

Thanks again.

Terri

 

Summary: Hermione returns from Australia to finish her education only to discover one fatal error she made in her absence. She missed Snape's funeral. She has a reason, but she isn't sure it will be accepted.

Categories: General Fics Genre: Warnings: Character Death, Mild Profanity

Word count: 1683 Chapters: 1 Completed: Yes
Published:
10/02/10 Updated: 10/05/10


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 10/07/10 Title: Chapter 1: I Sent a Letter Saying I Approved

Hi, Molly. I noticed your story in the Most Recent list, as well as your banner request, so I decided to take a look.

As much as I really don't want to say this, you could have done much better in this story. The characterisation wasn't so much Hermione as it seemed like your own personal feelings about Snape imprinted on her. I know Hermione is your favourite character, so it's rather disappointing that you let this fic fall short of the potential it possesses. 

Ron was great. He was adequately cowed my Hermione's bitchy attitude, and he was more in keeping with the Ron that pulled Harry out of that frozen pond than anything, which was excellently done.

I just wish that Hermione had been more like herself. The rampant swearing is case in point. In all the books, she never used the words 'damn' and 'hell', let alone the words 'bastard' -- and especially -- 'bullshit'. The beginning was in keeping with her character, but the further into profanity she delved, the more she departed from the true Hermione Granger.

There were also several glaring punctuation mistakes, such as no question marks after interrogative sentences and misused semicolons. I suggest that you find yourself a third beta who is stronger on punctuation (in that regard, Apurva is definitely the best) to correct these errors for you. I know the story is already validated, but I'm guessing you want your fics to be a reflection on you as a writer, which entails a certain pedigree of excellence.

I hope you don't think I'm picking on you, but you can do much better than this. I hope that, if I check on this story down the line, that you've possibly taken a bit of this to heart.

Have a good evening,

~Jess



Author's Response: Don't worry about any hard feelings. I'm a big girl, and I know you just want to help make this the best story it can be. I actually am thinking about sending this around for a third round of betaing, but sadly, Apruva is not available. But there are other PIs.

 

My Black Brother by hestiajones
Rated: 1st-2nd Years [Reviews - 8]

Summary: He realises his brother was right.



Winner of Stage 2: Free Verse the Second Annual October Triathlon at Poetry Anyone. Nominated for a QSQ for Best Poetry.

Categories: Poetry Genre: Warnings: None

Word count: 123 Chapters: 1 Completed: Yes
Published:
10/24/10 Updated: 10/25/10


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 10/25/10 Title: Chapter 1: Chapter 1

Ooh, how very dark and awesome. :D

I like to think that failure to question the status quo is something only idiots do, but we both know that Regulus wasn't an idiot.I'd like to amend that to 'oblivious to the alternative', because that seems to fit better. You illustrate that so well. It's angsty, but not emo-ish, which makes it sparkle so very much. 

I think my favourite part is the entire last stanza. It says so much about how much Regulus regrets not having the bollocks to find his own way instead of living the life that was mapped out for him before he was born.

Gah, you so rock, and so does this poem, Madame Greengrass. I heart you!

~Jess



Author's Response: Hello!



:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D



Yep, you're so right. He was oblivious to the alternative, but he'd want to think that he didn't really know how to question it. ;) The last stanza is my favourite as well. I'm actually quite proud of this poem, if I may say so.



Thanks for reading and reviewing, Jess! I <3 you too!



~Natalie

 

Juggling by Equinox Chick
Rated: 3rd-5th Years [Reviews - 19]

Summary: Lily Evans wasn’t the only Gryffindor with a childhood friend. Whilst she was meeting the boy who would introduce her to the magical world, someone else was learning how to mix with Muggles.

This is not, however, a story about Lily Evans. This is a tale about James Potter and the Muggle girl that he never quite forgot.

This story is for Natalie (hestiajones) who makes me laugh more than most people and has been a very supportive friend, despite our separate continents. Happy Birthday, mate!

I’m indebted to Gina (Gmariam) who kindly offered to beta this short one-shot, and then didn’t complain when it mushroomed into a chaptered fic.

Because of an archive gliitch, this fic has been temporarily put down a rating. the content remains the same and it is still a 6th-7th. You have been warned.

Disclaimer: I am not JK Rowling. If I had been, then Sirius, Remus, James, Lily and Tonks would not have died. Peter, however would have died in an icky manner

OMMPP! Juggling won 2 QSQ's for Best Chaptered Marauder and Dita won Best Original Character. Seriously pleased and shocked here. Thank you.

The chapter titles are all from Keane songs.

Categories: Other Pairing Genre: Warnings: Mild Profanity, Sexual Situations, Violence

Word count: 16283 Chapters: 3 Completed: Yes
Published:
10/29/10 Updated: 11/13/10


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 10/29/10 Title: Chapter 1: Chapter 1 - On a Day Like Today

This is so totally an 'awwww' story. I just adore the fact that James is so like himself, but you still managed to make him not so fat-headed. That subsequently leads me to believe that he learnt it from that nasty Black boy. :D

Darling story, and I can't wait for the thrilling conclusion... *in best TV narrator voice*

 

~Jess



Author's Response: You mean that 'nasty Black boy' that I adore - ha ha. Thank you, Jess, it gets a bit darker and less fluffy in the other chapters. But actually, I hope you'll see the change between James and Sirius because there's a small part of that coming up. Thanks for the review. ~Carole~

 

It Could Never Be by Gmariam
Rated: 6th-7th Years [Reviews - 3]

Summary: A poem about all those couples whose love was never meant to be.

Categories: Poetry Genre: Warnings: Sexual Situations

Word count: 211 Chapters: 1 Completed: Yes
Published:
10/29/10 Updated: 10/29/10


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 10/29/10 Title: Chapter 1: It Could Never Be

I know you still have your doubts and all that about it, but this really is a fantastic poem. The iambic pentameter is absolutely flawless, and it beautifully escapes the trap of sacrificing content for structure. It flows so perfectly, and every syllable is just right to set up a steady rhythm, which in itself lends even more to the concept of the poem.

A kiss destroys, chaste feelings all undone:
Lips crash, cry out a frantic song of lust.
They quickly join their burning flesh as one,
Their consummation sealed by one last thrust.

This is without a doubt my favourite part. It is just so real and emotive, and I can't help but feel like I'm there (in that non-creepy, non-voyeur way, of course). There is just so much bang packed into that verse, and it's it serves almost as a climax, leaving the last two lines to be that feeling of floating back down to earth and landing in a puffy little pile of denial, like prior restriction just doesn't exist for them, the couple of the reader's choice. Then again, I think you know who came into my mind. :D

Awesome, fantastic, and gorgeous sonnet, dear, and I'm so glad you posted it so I could praise it in public. You are truly gifted in the art of structural poetry.

~Jess



Author's Response: Wow, Jess, thanks so much! What an amazing review. I'm actually pretty happy with how this turned out--it's just not much compared to some of the other stuff out there today. I really enjoy writing poems with such strict rhythm, at least when I actually get the inspiration to write poetry. For some reason, I was inspired to write this poem and it came really quickly. Thanks for the suggestion on that one line, it's perfect. And thanks for the great review! ~Gina :)

 

Rise And Fall by pattybuns_hpf
Rated: 1st-2nd Years [Reviews - 1]

Summary: A piece of poetry that describes the rise and fall of Tom Marvolo Riddle or Lord Voldemort for the matter.

Categories: Poetry Genre: Warnings: None

Word count: 160 Chapters: 1 Completed: Yes
Published:
11/19/10 Updated: 11/23/10


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 02/17/11 Title: Chapter 1: Rise And Fall

Hi, Patty!

My name is Jess. I noticed that your poem has no reviews, so today, I shall endeavour to give you helpful and constructive advice, as well as some deserved praise, for your poem.

The first thing I noticed is that the opening stanza reminds me greatly of how Merope would have felt once she stopped dosing Tom Riddle Sr with the love potion. It parallels well with ‘the light falling’, or essentially the end of her happiness, and then she is poor and without prospects, waiting for her baby to arrive. I do wonder whether this was your intent, but it is a gorgeous start to the story you’re telling in this poem

This theme for me carried over for me to the second stanza, especially with the disease and the screaming (her in labour). I recall in the memories shared with Harry in HBP that there was something unsettling about Merope’s very presence at the orphanage, as well as with baby Tom. It’s a remarkable correlation, and quite well done.

But then I got to the third stanza and the line ‘He killed them all’. I will admit, it threw me a bit. There was this gorgeous buildup of the sad, destructive circumstances that started Tom’s descent into what he was when we first met him, and then he ‘killed them all’; it almost feels too rushed. There wasn’t a mention of the disillusion he felt about finding his true parentage, which is what fuelled his rage and pushed him over the edge. Perhaps if there had been a transitional stanza, or at least a line acknowledging this, it would have made this the best stanza of the whole poem.

The fourth stanza is gorgeous. It emphasises how Tom got a taste for killing, revenge, and the assertion of his power. I really like how you outlined his lack of conscience after having committed murder. There was no frilly language — just matter of fact, just like his intent. In fact, the only thing about the whole stanza that doesn’t quite fit well is the word ‘cower’, and when dealing with such heavy themes, it’s easy to go overboard.

There are aspects of the fifth and sixth paragraphs that are slightly redundant, which dilutes the intensity that was built in the previous stanzas. One simple way around that is to blend them together, which would greatly assist the flow and unintended repetition, and it would have the potential to act like a crescendo instead of a long transition.

I have to admit, when I first read the ending stanza, I was confused. It seems like each line says the same thing but phrased in a different way. Reading it over a few more times, it doesn’t feel as much like this is the case, but I didn’t find it as poignant of satisfying as the other segments. The point of view seems to switch to less of a dispassionate narrative and more of a single person’s judgment of Voldemort, which is rather obvious in the last line. I don’t know if I have any suggestions to fix it, but perhaps looking at it from that perspective might give you an insight into the stanza that you hadn’t considered before.

All in all, your command of punctuation to regulate flow is really good. The semicolon is one of the most misused and abused keys on the keyboard, so it makes me happy to see it used well in this poem, which deals with one of my favourite subjects. You have a mostly gorgeous poem, and I truly believe that, with a little bit of tweaking and revision, it could be even better. I read in your profile that you don’t consider yourself a writer, but your writing begs to differ. Poetry is difficult, time-consuming, and has the highest risk of failure of almost any form of writing at all, but you have done well, both with this and your other poem posted on this site. I’d hereby like to encourage you to keep pursuing it. Look up different poem structures and try some brand new things, and you’ll be surprised how rewarding it can be to see that you’ve risen to the challenge.

I hope that I was able to offer you some pertinent and valuable advice in order to hone both this poem and your skills as a writer. You have good talent, and only trying, trying, and more trying will build your abilities until you find yourself the peer of the authors you love to follow. I hope to see you on the Most Recent list in the near future!

 

Take care and happy writing,

~Jess

 

Over A Mug of Tea by hestiajones
Rated: 1st-2nd Years [Reviews - 10]

Summary: I think of her as a sister.

The words rang clearly, loudly in his mind.

I think of her as a sister.

But did he?

Happy Birthday, Julia! You know you're one of the only two people on earth I'd do this for. :D

Thank you, Carole, for looking it over. And I am so not J.K.Rowling.

Nominated for a QSQ in the General Category.

Categories: Harry/Hermione Genre: Warnings: Sexual Situations

Word count: 2086 Chapters: 1 Completed: Yes
Published:
11/19/10 Updated: 11/21/10


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 11/22/10 Title: Chapter 1: Chapter 1

Ooh, this is absolutely stellar. It was so sweet and innocent, hardly even a blip on the radar, but it changed everything for Harry. It's unbelievable how well you've spun this perfect little tale, woven in and out of canon, and the characters are unmistakably themselves.

I suppose this is a story about people changing, which is the entire premise of why I love Harmony so much. I never believed that they were attracted to one another during the books, though there were times that it was possible, but as people move on later in life, as we both know, things that mattered to us before don't matter anymore, and things that had never crossed are mind are coming to the forefront. The very idea of Harmony for me is based upon this idea of people changing. 

Very, very lovely fic, dear Natalie. Heart heart, favorited.

~Jess



Author's Response: I suppose this is a story about people changing

exactly! I wanted the story to be less about what happened that night, than what it meant for Harry as a person, and what it meant for his relationship with Hermione. It is something that happened without any planning, and I think that was what scared him the most.

Possibilities, eh? ;)

Thanks for such a lovely review. I shall now bask in the glory of my success, as both you and Julia have given this fic your seals of approval.

~Natalie

 

Shattered by Gmariam
Rated: 3rd-5th Years [Reviews - 19]

Summary: Past Featured StoryThe Boy Who Lived discovers that he may not have escaped the Final Battle unscathed after all.

Categories: Dark/Angsty Fics Genre: Warnings: Alternate Universe, Character Death, Epilogue? What Epilogue?, Mental Disorders

Word count: 2864 Chapters: 1 Completed: Yes
Published:
11/21/10 Updated: 11/21/10


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 01/04/11 Title: Chapter 1: Shattered

Can you believe it’s taken me this long to get around to reading not only angsty, screwed up, post-war Harry, but one that you wrote? Jess fails in that regard, Twin. For that, I can only apologise. Oh, and leave you a much better review. :D

It’s so difficult to put into words how I feel about this story. It would seem weird if I said it was lovely or fantastic, because that would make me seem a bit sadistic, deriving enjoyment from someone slowly losing his mind in the worst way possible, but I do love it — so very, very much — because of these things.

As you know, I have always held that there is no earthly way that Harry could walk out of the Battle thinking of sandwiches and kittens and rainbows. I think he woke up from that nap in a completely different state of mind. This story is almost a realisation of the most extreme instance of how things could have turned out: dark, diseased, destitute, and damned.

At first, I thought that the ‘you’ was Ron, since he was the closest Weasley to Harry (despite what those ebil canon shippers say), but I actually found it a pleasant surprise to be wrong. I mean, it sounded like Ron, but there was something a bit off about it, almost too reverent toward Harry and their past together. Ginny was far more apt in this role, and I’m glad you chose her.

One detail that almost slipped by me is when you said ‘even George’. I’m glad you share my views on post-war George being rather detached and screwed up, almost like how Harry was in my mind. It’s scary when we commiserate on our characterisation views and find so many commonalities in them and how we think such and such characters turned out, and George is a perfect example of that. And all of that dark speculating fits so marvellously well into this fic, which is almost an incarnation of the worst case scenario past wondering about Kreacher bringing Harry a sandwich.

During the fic, I hypothesised that maybe when Harry had come back from King’s Cross, he was so singularly focussed on his mission that when that was over, something in his brain snapped, like a robot awaiting its orders but doesn’t get any, sending it into ‘TILT’ mode. I was far more impressed with your version, though. What a clever way to construct this scenario, taking something that happened in canon but adding a new twist to it to create your alternate reality.

What an insidious device, this spell. There is a reason that there are two other spells which are ‘Unforgivable’ that aren’t the most blatant one (murder), and it’s because they both involve the mind. The Imperius is obvious in its connotations with the brain, and also the Cruciatus in how it can evoke madness in excess; spells which affect the mind are the worst sort, because they can take away something even more precious than the life force which does little more than plunge blood through veins. It violates what people are that makes them who they are, the ultimate wrong-doing, the most heinous attack. It escapes me how this inspired idea could surprise me, since I know how brilliant you are, but you constructed the perfect prison for Harry’s mind and by far the most sinister. Well done, you!

 

Using second person was a rather intrepid move. The same story could have easily been written in first person, but the masterful sustaining of the second person voice in this gave it the level of intimacy necessary to really put oneself into Ginny’s shoes and feel what she felt, hurt when she hurt, be angry when she was. I just really got the feeling of being there in the story, watching everything that made Harry the character I adore wither and die and, as you so aptly described, shatter.

I knew Harry was going to ultimately die, but when it happened, it felt cold and clinical to me, like waiting for an older relative to kick off after a long time, but when the grieving time is supposed to come, it sort of doesn’t, like I’ve made my peace with it already and the event itself is just the full stop at the end. I really like how you did that and covet it enormously. You took that scenario, that inevitability, and grafted such a potent sense of realism onto it. Go you!

In conclusion, after gushing this much, I honestly haven’t found anything that gave me pause or lessened my enjoyment of this story in the slightest. Every single detail, every plot point, was airtight and fabulous, and if it wasn’t past five in the morning, I’d go back and read it again. I hope this story gets podcasted at some point, because it would be brilliant to put this into my iPod and enjoy it on the go.

Thank you, Twin, for writing such a wondrous story. You are an inspiring author, and I know 2.0 will come soon!

~Jess

 


Author's Response: SQUUUEEEEEEE!! Thank you so much for the amazing review, Jess. Like, wow. First of all, I'm so glad you came by to read one of my stories, and I'm so so so glad it was this one! This was so different for me, writing a second-person AU fic like this. I definitely had my doubts. I really can't remember where I got the specific idea, except from the vague prompt for the PP challenge. I originally wanted to write the epic of doom for this prompt, but that's still going nowhere almost a year later. So I decided on a character death and ran with it from there. It came fast and quick and easy, really. It was definitely one of those stories that I just transcribed from the muses. I'm glad I brought the angst enough for you, since you are a master of angst yourself. And to think I wrote this in the middle of all sorts of J/L fluff - maybe that's why, lol. I can't believe you don't have any concrit. Ah well, I'll take the gushing. Thanks for the SBBC recommendation, as well. And once again, thanks for coming by to read this one, it means alot to me, twin! ~Gina :)

 

How the Prince Stole Christmas by L A Moody
Rated: 1st-2nd Years [Reviews - 6]

Summary: Long before there was Severus Snape, children the world over enjoyed the antics of a different, green-faced sourpuss. In parody and tribute, a melding of the two just in time for the holidays. Wishing all the participants at Mugglenet a very merry Christmas.

SPOILER ALERT for anyone who is not aware of the true identity of the Half-Blood Prince.

 

~~Nominated for 2011 Quicksilver Quills, Best Humor Story~~

 

 

 


Categories: Humor Fics Genre: Warnings: None

Word count: 1594 Chapters: 1 Completed: Yes
Published:
12/06/10 Updated: 12/06/10


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 12/06/10 Title: Chapter 1: How the Prince Stole Christmas

I just... I have no words. I simply cannot grasp how you were able to harness the wonder and simplicity of Seuss and still make it so undeniably Potter. I am just completely gobsmacked by how well you did with this. I don't favorite one-shots often, but this one is going on the list. Very well done, Divine Miss L. :D

~Jess

Author's Response: Thanks so much for the gushing compliments. Im gobsmacked in return. Seuss and Potter arent really that far apart when you consider that theyre both fantasies. I just didnt coin any original words like Seuss did; I had JKR to do that for me.

 

Doubt by lucca4
Rated: 3rd-5th Years [Reviews - 5]

Summary: Past Featured Story

In the midst of the war, the Marauders and Lily have joined the Order, resolute in their decision to fight for justice. But times are hard, and soon, even the strongest of loyalties begin to wear thin.

This is lucca4 of Gryffindor writing for the final in the MWPP class on the Beta Boards.

Nominated for a 2011 QSQ - Best Marauder era Story


Categories: Marauder Era Genre: Warnings: Character Death, Mild Profanity

Word count: 3742 Chapters: 1 Completed: Yes
Published:
12/20/10 Updated: 12/20/10


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 01/04/11 Title: Chapter 1: Doubt

Hmm, I feel like I’ve read this story somewhere before... :P

There are many fascinating facets of this story, amongst which are characterisation, structure, and style. I find them all brilliant, as I did when I betaed this fic in the first place, but I thought the first review for this story should be one to let you know just how well done it is and that it’s really a shame that it doesn’t have more reviews and reads.

I found the choice of having Remus purposely separating himself from his mates to be both interesting and apt. To me, there has always been a sort of Cloud Nine effect on him because he had the benefit of very few knowing about his affliction, but when he set out into the real world and couldn’t seek employment anywhere without saying directly that he was a werewolf, it would cause him no end of troubles finding a job as well as anyone who would consider him as anything more than a monster. It has always struck me as something that would weigh heavily on him and his self-esteem and his ultimate need to be liked, causing him to withdraw from his previous social relationships once he deemed himself unworthy to be their friend. The way he pushed away Sirius is very telling of that, and very well characterised.

And Sirius... boy, do I love me some snark! His verbal sparring in both the Remus segments as well as the Rodolphus segments was wonderful and charming, but not over the top, as can happen. I think you portrayed him as a good reflection of who he probably was somewhere between the boy whose boredom could only be alleviated by humiliating Snape and the man who would escape prison to exact vengeance on the man who pretended to be his friend and sold out the Order to Voldemort. Sirius was always a man whose moral compass didn’t point due north, but he was always on the right side in the end. I think you did a good job in making it feel like he was refusing Rodolphus because of this and not because he was trying to ‘stick it’ to his family.

I can’t say enough about Peter in this story. I think he’s the true victory in terms of characterisation. As a reader, I can see how he has always been loyal to his friends, but his feelings started to change with Lily’s introduction into their group, whom he never considered as one of his mates and more of a rival for James’s attention. I think it’s a very apt and well-conceived piece of work, right down to his rather halting defence of his friends.

I have to make a note about your portrayal of Snape. He was truly excellent in this story. He’s not yet the embittered old man who is horrible to children, but he’s still the sharpened manipulator that he’d always been, only to a different end. His voice and actions and methods were simply so well done.

The differences between James and Lily were so understated, yet they were perfect. James is so focused on his duties with the Order and so loyal to the cause that he doesn’t realise that Lily might be having second thoughts about dedicating herself to the same things. It almost seems like, at this point, the fact that he had to think about being a father before a warrior hasn’t occurred to him yet, it hasn’t sunk in thus far, whereas Lily spent every second of every day, feeling this new life growing inside of her, a constant reminder of the danger they all faced. The way you illustrated this by having James not think twice about telling Lucius to go to hell but having Lily actually consider the offer before realising what it entailed was great.

Lily’s fears felt palpable and very realistic. Her borderline resentment of her lot in life and how it robbed her of simple things like going to sleep at night and not worrying about waking to news of someone she cares about being dead or worse at the hand of maniacs, it makes so much sense. Even something as simple as not getting to celebrate Valentine’s Day on the actual day it’s supposed to be niggled at her, which in itself isn’t a big deal, but the constant stress of war took missing a minor holiday, despite James’s obvious effort to make her feel better about it, sort of blew things out of proportion for her and made big deals out of things that really weren’t. Maybe even pregnancy hormones did a good bit to cause this for her, as well. I think you incorporated much of this so subliminally and so very nicely.

I’m glad I talked you into adding the end with the Order meeting. The way the members bantered back and forth was really good, plus it gave you a chance to tie all of these events together in some other way besides them being about the Marauders. It was just so clever to use events that weren’t technically canon but had the feel like they were the sort of events that could very well have been the harsh reality of the Order members during wartime.

 

In retrospect, I probably should have suggested that you blend together the first two segments, as they were both about Remus and there wasn’t enough of a difference between the events in the first part and the second to warrant a division between them. But besides that, I like the way you structured the story, especially not sticking Peter at the end of the Marauders’ segments, which would have given it an ‘oh, yeah, and then there’s Peter, because he’s the bad guy’ feel. Instead, you found a way to cast doubt on all of them, but still clearly show which ones overcame those doubts in the end and who didn’t.

One thing that really struck me when I first read this story is how your writing is so unreflective of your age. Most younger writers stray toward purple prose and contrived plots, but you haven’t done that here, which speaks well to the writer you will be in the future should you choose to continue developing your skills. Even though your prose is good and your mechanics are strong, I think you can be even better than this down the line, and I look forward to seeing you grow as an author. The sky’s the limit, kiddo. :D

That’s all from me at the moment. It’s been a pleasure to work with you in the past few weeks, and here’s to future collaboration!

~Jess

 



Author's Response: Wow! Thank you so, so much for this amazingly wonderful review! I was so happy when I didn't see the little "0" by the reviews anymore, and then I saw this extremely long review, so thanks so much :). I really think that your ideas helped the story out a lot (especially Sirius's part and the Order scene). I'm so happy that you liked the characterizations of everyone, especially Snape and Peter because I feel like I'm hitting my head against a brick wall every time I write them. And I'm glad that you appreciate the little things, like how James's vehemence about joining Voldemort was contrasted with Lily's indecision. And about the Remus segmentsI'll go fix them right away. Thanks for pointing that out; I agree, it doesn't signify a great enough change to really need the break. I think I just forgot to edit it out when I copied it onto here. And it makes me so happy to hear that you don't think my writing relates to my age -- coming from you, this is a really wonderful compliment. Thank you very much for being my first review on this story--and for leaving such a wonderfully detailed and complimentary one at that! xx Ariana

 

Three by the opaleye
Rated: 6th-7th Years [Reviews - 7]

Summary: They move in a circle. She goes one way, he the other. It is a punishment neither deserves nor wants, and yet she holds the power to stop it.

Nominated for a 2011 Quicksilver Quill Award in Best Non-Canon Romance.

Categories: Hermione/Draco Genre: Warnings: Alternate Universe, Sexual Situations, Substance Abuse

Word count: 1214 Chapters: 1 Completed: Yes
Published:
01/06/11 Updated: 01/11/11


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 04/22/11 Title: Chapter 1: Three.

Well hello, Madam Julia!

There is something sad and heart-breaking about this fic, and it’s not that my heart bleeds for the ship itself. I think there is something dark and twisted about torturing oneself by watching the object of your desire flirt with someone else — especially if they know you know and do it anyway. But I think Hermione deals with it quite well. I smiled at her borderline cattiness at saying ‘So Not His Type’.

She felt in-character to me throughout. It is a bit strange that she ends up with Draco after Harry is dead, and I’m assuming Ron is, as well, but after reading, I felt like it was almost like she was punishing herself by forcing herself into his affections and accidentally fell for him a little bit herself. But her persistence in not admitting her feelings for him, it almost felt to me like she was fighting like hell not to let go to her loved ones and that she would’ve been doing so in giving into Draco.

Draco felt in-character, as well. I can see him wanting to make her suffer by watching him feel up another girl. I think he would’ve done even if he and Hermione hadn’t had a thing going on, but it seemed like a true and correct act of pettiness to take every jab at her heart that he could and when he could. It was just so very Draco.

The idea of Hermione getting drunk and stumbling home breaks my heart. When she seemed relieved to even have made it via the Floo just conjures a pathetic picture of someone accidentally bouncing out into someone’s living room or kitchen, or maybe she hoped she would never come out at all. It makes me wonder how much the ever strong Hermione Granger can take before her resolve cracks and she turns into this mournful, shell of a person that she is in the fic. You really must write that sometime. :D

I got the shivers as she waited for Draco to come, almost glad of the distraction of the bickering neighbours downstairs. I knew he would be coming and for her sake, I hoped that he wouldn’t so she could finally let go. I didn’t care that she loved him; she needed to be freeeeee. DX And when he did come, it actually made a knot form in my stomach because of what I knew would happen.

Hermione stripping almost robotically was both potent and disgusting all at once. It made her look like a sad excuse of the woman she should’ve been and little more than his kept woman. Then and there I wanted to chop his bits off and make him suffer, but then he spoke and changed my perspective of everything.

He was tired of being punished.

She was leading him on. :O I never would’ve guessed that was coming, but she was making him pay for deaths he probably had nothing to do with. This makes me think that he did genuinely care for her in his own way but had lost the patience for her games, instead jerking her around by flaunting other women and trying to goad her into saying what he wants to hear, even if he himself isn’t able to say it.

All in all, this story, this game of affections between them, is so well drawn. You managed to make me sympathise with both of them, which I didn’t expect would happen with Draco. I remember the initial drabble, and the additions that you made to make it a one-shot really filled out the story and gave it so much more depth of character which is just… ridiculous for a 1200 word fic.

Your writing style is just so engaging, and it really wraps me up in the story. Once again, you managed to master the art of using sentence length to make the emotions of the fic move along at such a carefully measured pace. It felt like you orchestrated this on a stage, composing the score to elicit all the right reactions in all the right places in the story line. It was utterly stunning, and I’m glad I chose to read it today.

~Jess



Author's Response: Hey Jess! Sorry for taking so long to reply to this. I wasn't ignoring you, I was just wondering how on earth I could leave a decent reply to this giant review xDDD Wow, Draco certainly did rile you and I'm glad! I didn't want to present him as this character who had miraculously lost all his flaws because he realised the error of his beliefs and was no longer under the influence of Voldemort. He may regret his past actions but he still has that cruel and vindictive streak to him. However, Hermione isn't perfect in this either and I really tried to get that across, too. She isn't perfect in canon and I love how you picked up on that cattiness because we see it time and again in the books, particularly in HBP regarding Ron and Lav Lav.

Hm, and while I say I'm glad Draco riled you up, I'm also glad you were able to sympathise with him after the slight twist. They're both playing games with each other and their stubbornness (which they both share) won't let them give in. I liked building up that dynamic because I think it fits certain aspects of their characters rather well.

I do have a back story in my mind as to how they ended up in this mess together and maybe one day I'll write it down but for this particular one-shot I really just wanted to explore a moment in time and the complexities of their relationship. Thank you so much for this wonderful review, Jess! It makes me smile to know that something I wrote could evoke such a response, especially from someone who does not like this ship! Keep on being awesome xD

Julia x

 

Harmony by hestiajones
Rated: 1st-2nd Years [Reviews - 5]

Summary: A poem for Harry/Hermione.

Thanks to Jess for encouraging me to publish this.

I wrote this, not J.K.Rowling; she doesn't ship Harmony. :P

Categories: Poetry Genre: Warnings: None

Word count: 100 Chapters: 1 Completed: Yes
Published:
01/11/11 Updated: 01/16/11


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 01/16/11 Title: Chapter 1: Chapter 1

Yay, Harmony. I sort of already squeed over this poem, so I'll just leave a short message, since reviews are love and all.

My favourite part about this poem is that it does carry on that air of ambiguity, which allows the reader to really see what they want to see, but since it was written for Megan, it does hint toward Harmony. But since I like weird pairings, I could easily see Draco/Katie or Theo/Susan or nearly anything. It's just set up to mean a lot of different things if you want. That makes it even awesome-er!

Heart ya, Bestia. :)

~Jess



Author's Response: This is indeed my second review from you. I LOVE YOU! I do agree that it could suit a lot of other pairings since I am as weird as you.

Heart ya too!

~Natalie

 

It Takes Two to Tango by lucca4
Rated: 3rd-5th Years [Reviews - 10]

Summary:

They cannot keep doing this; it is only a matter of whose resolve will break first. They may have grown distant, their friendship may never mend, but something else has begun. Similarly to the sultry dance so reminiscent of their stolen kisses, drifting apart is only the beginning.

Disclaimer: I am not JK Rowling and I definitely don't own her world.

Winner for 2011 QSQ - Best Same Sex Pairing, along with Equinox Chick's Monochrome, one of the most beautiful stories on this site. Thank you immensely for nominating/voting!

Huge, huge thank you to Natalie/hestiajones for beta-ing this.

Categories: Femmeslash Genre: Warnings: Mild Profanity, Sexual Situations, Slash

Word count: 2843 Chapters: 1 Completed: Yes
Published:
01/29/11 Updated: 02/02/11


Reviewer: ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor Signed
Date: 05/28/11 Title: Chapter 1: Tango

I have always believed that there is a time in every writer’s development when either a large step is taken toward great things, or said writer is left behind with everyone else. Only a gifted few ever do the former, and the rest of us typically fall into the latter category. When I read a story of yours for the first time, which I *believe* was Doubt, I had such high hopes for you as an aspiring creative writer. Defiance added to that, and stepping outside of the box and writing a pairing you’d never before considered with Susan/Theo was yet another step in the right direction.

And then there was this story.

There are so many lovely parts in this story that I could practically write a one-shot worth of praise for it, but I’m sure neither of us have that sort of time. So, I’m going to touch upon a few of the reasons why this is definitely a ‘breakthrough’ fic and what I believe makes it so.

The ability to write a non-canon event with canon conviction — that is to say, making it fit into canon and just have that feeling that it really did happen — is not something that can be taught. It can be directed and given certain sets of criteria, but writing to add to a pre-existing dimension yet still making it your own in a fabulous trait to have as a writer. The way you drew from what we know of Parvati and Lavender in this story, yet still selling me on an idea that had truly never crossed my mind until I read this story, is a gift of talent. From beginning to end, I couldn’t help but feel like I was in Jo’s world and just reading a small file she’d tucked into her buckets of notes, something scripted that didn’t make the final draft. Those are my absolute favourite kinds of stories, and I love that you were able to do that here.

Writing about one’s battles with homosexuality is not an easy feat. It’s something that I know from experience, and it’s difficult not to sound patronising or make the character out to be homophobic or just wangsty, but I thought you handled the girls’ respective identity crises very well. I think the most unique thing about how you did it was that they weren’t both mirrors of one another in terms of reaction to their first kiss. They were two distinct individuals who acted far differently, and their trains of thought, while somewhat similar, had their own unique sets of factors and feelings involved.

It was interesting that, of the two, Parvati seems to be the more sexually open one. One would think that it would be the other way around, since Lavender has the reputation in fanon as liking boys more than normal (which seems like a misconception, considering that, as far as we know, she’d only gone to the Yule Ball with Seamus and dated Ron). But you so expertly drew on canon and made your alternate theory fit and seem even more plausible than what many assume to know about these two.

I thought it was fitting that Parvati would worry far more about how her mother would react than anyone else. It speaks a lot of her heritage and her cultural differences. I’m assuming you would know more about Hindi culture than me, but from what I’ve heard, it seems like something that would push some buttons in the family. It fit that you touched upon this as a deciding factor, but also that you made Parvati her own person and Gryffindor enough to decide what is right for herself.

Lavender seemed to have far more issue with her feelings for Parvati than the other way around. In her youthful lack of knowledge, she assumed that all girls who liked other girls have to be lesbians and that all lesbians had to be like her aunt — short hair, no makeup, and smelling like cigarettes. It humanises her in a very strong way, because I’m sure we’ve all had a wildly off-base assumption about someone of a different culture, creed, sexuality, or race, only to find out later that we were so very, very wrong. For instance, I used to think, before I’d ever actually met a gay person, that gay men were all well groomed and dressed nice. Hahahahahahaha… no. So wrong. Things like these that make someone identify on a personal level are what separate good characterisation from great characterisation.

Neville’s appearance was a bit of a squee part. I liked how you managed to show how the other DA members accepted the shift of leadership from Harry to Neville and that the latter had grown into a role of respect where he had formerly been the house spaz. The way he showed genuine concern for his flock was touching and felt right.

And as for the war, it felt almost like it was in the background, barely ascertainable, but in a way, at least for me, it worked better that way. I believe I’ve mentioned this before, but the bad parts about Hogwarts almost couldn’t have been non-stop. First of all, I don’t think Snape would’ve allowed things to get so bad as per Dumbledore’s final instructions for him, nor would the other teachers. So a lull in the Carrow fiasco (likely after the first round of torturing when everyone is on their best behaviour and trying to keep out of trouble) is not an unreasonable thing to assume. So the lack of it in the forefront is not a bad thing, I believe.

What I would call the only drawback of this story is the insertion of Lavender’s mum and how the next time It came up was because someone else mentioned it. I do think that Lavender would use her emotional struggle from the kiss to think about something else besides her mother being in danger, but her reaction when Parvati brought it up didn’t seem quite right. I don’t know how she could possibly not think about it for that length of time. If you have thoughts on this, then feel free to share, but I am a bit dubious on a girl who seems to love her mother being able to push something out of her mind for that long. Perhaps if she had said something like she’d been trying not to think about it, it would’ve rang a bit more true. Just something to think about.

The heart to heart at the end was so touching and raw. It was as if they’d decided that pretext was over and they had to be honest with one another. For Lavender to admit that she was apprehensive about being judged took guts, and for Parvati to initiate the conversation in the first place, even though she said she didn’t want to do it, either, also took a bit of courage. In the end, though, how much the girls cared for one another and the fortitude that stood them well in the Battle really shined through.

All in all, I think this is your best story thus far. I’ve not got a chance to read your chaptered story yet, but knowing your usual quality of writing, I have no doubt that it’ll be just as good, possibly even better, than everything else I’ve read from you. So bravissima! The story is fabulous; you are fabulous.

~Jess

 

 



Author's Response: You happen to leave the some of the most gorgeous reviews I have ever received :) . I think this one will keep me smiling for the whole weekend. It makes me so, so happy to hear that you liked it. I have to admit, when it came up in the SBBC discussion I was worried you might think it was too fluffy/mushy/superficial, and I'm just so unbelievably glad that you enjoyed reading it. It was a fun challenge to write. I wanted to make Parvati and Lavender noticeably different in the ways they dealt with their feelings for one another. I think Parvati had an inkling that she wasn't straight before the kiss, which is why she accepted who she was more readily than Lavender. I felt like Lavender was probably bisexual, and that in-between-ness where she realizes she *can* have feelings for a boy and fulfill the life path she had planned out for herself puts her at more of a stalemate than Parvati. I'm glad you liked Neville, as well. He's such a sweet guyI think he achieved his leadership in the group more through how compassionate he was towards everyone, whereas Harry already had the help of his fame (not to say Harry's not a nice person), and I wanted to sneak that in there. I purposefully set the story in their seventh year because Lavender and Parvati are the only Gryffindor seventh-year girls, and I think that forced closeness would act as a catalyst for their relationship to bloom. I was worried it would come off as a fic that was too much romance and not enough plot, but not enough to actually add in war scenes :). Shows you just how dedicated I am, lol. Anyway, I'm happy you thought it worked well.

I've been reading the SBBC discussions (*cough* more like stalking*cough*) on this, and both the SBBC-lings and you pointed out the Lavender's-concern-over-her-mum thing, which I really hadn't noticed before. I'm glad you all pointed it out, because when I read it it was more of a Lavender-is-trying-to-distract-herself-from-her-mum thing (which is why she is so invested in solving this relationship and why I don't think the relationship itself will last). But now that I read it over, she sounds a little callous. I think I'll take your advice and change the line a bit, as now reading it just makes me wince.

Thank you, so very, very much for reviewing this story. Your comments are always so eloquently put and it makes me happy to think that someone actually put the time into thinking so deeply about something I typed up :). xx Ariana

 
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