Lydia is a lovely little packet of fun who hails from Australia. She enjoys being a natural blonde who can surprise people with her extensive vocabulary and A+ literature exams. She has blue eyes and is fairly tall and tanned. She enjoys surfing, netball, dancing, gymnastics and swimming and would never come home from the beach if someone didn't force her. Her favourite novels include Wuthering Heights, The Importance of Being Ernest, Finding Cassie Crazy and Wildwood Dancing. One day when she has grown up, she plans to be an author/illustrator or play netball for Australia or both.
Hello! I'm Lydia, and I must confess, I love this story. I'm quite picky with what I read and I have to say, your summary is really what pulled me in and made me read this. It's just about perfectly written, I think, with that right balance of information, without giving away anything too important and still managing to be intriguing.
First off, I'd like to say that I love the fact that this is written solely from James' perspective. This is the first (well-written) fic I've seen from James' POV, that actually does justice his character. So often you see him stereotyped because of what we see in that tiny snippet in book 5, and I really hate that. I mean, there's a reason Lily fell in love with him. (Sorry - passionate about Marauder Era :D) You've got him as this perfect mix of teenage boy (some of his thoughts are hilarious) and young man who is being forced to grow up a little quicker than he might have done otherwise. What I'm getting at is that I love your characterisation. I can see you put lots of thought into your representation of characters, which brings me to Sirius. I love him in this story, and he's my favourite character ever, so it pains me when he's done badly. But your Sirius is funny and the right mix of interested in girls, without chasing anything with a pulse, which makes me cringe when done in fanfic.
Your other characters are great as well. You've really bought something unique to each character, while still making them seem real and relateable, so well done :)
Next, your writing in general. It's fantastic! Seriously, the way you foreshadow and move the plot along nicely, without it feeling rushed or lagging at all is wonderful. This story has a delicious dark edge to it, a sort of ever-lingering sense of foreboding that I love, because it's not a romance for the sake of romance, it's got a real plot, and that constant dark tone reminds us of the other things that are going on, even while we're rooting for James.
And lastly, you've kept me guessing, which is awesome! I can't wait to find out who Jilly's murderer is, and though I have a hunch, you dropped so many little clues and red herrings that we can't be entirely sure. You could write original crime novels - you have that knack for mystery.
So yeah, love the story, love your writing and can't wait for what happens next :)
Author's Response: Thank you so much! I've had a lot of writing this whole story in James's POV and trying to get into his head, so I'm glad you're enjoying it and that you like his characterization and that of other characters -- that's always a key part to fanfiction. This story definitely has a darkness to it that I never fully developed in any of my other stories despite what angst they might have (imo, at least), and it's so good to know that you think it well done and that you enjoy it. And I'm glad you like the mystery! :) The next chapter shouldn't be too far off (hopefully!) Oh, and I'm glad the summary drew you in -- that's always a tricky thing to write.