Siobhan/Lucius reading list:
The Magnificent Malfoy by Fantasium
/ an Alternate Universe based on The Great Gatsby
Long Lost Lucille by Fantasium
/ a companion-shot to The Magnificent Malfoy:
Sinful Reunion by callmehermione
/ a companion shot to an earlier chapter of Sins.
For other more, try my LJ fic community, secretsofluna; you'll find the link just below. :)
Summary: A different sort of alternate universe... It is a world under the thumb of an ancient emperor. Muggle society has been oppressed beyond recognition. Wizards rule over all, their only laws defined by power. This is the story of a rebellion, a family, a traitor, and the long road that leads home at last.
She took out the comma mallet on yours, too, eh? >.> Excellent, excellent work. I'm dying here. I think the scene between Dumbledore and Melinda was my favourite... okay, and... um, who is Nyt? Am I supposed to know her, because I have some sneaking suspicions that she's not entirely 'original, but I might just be crazy. I like the Harry/Draco relationship, and I think you should stop worrying so much about the Quidditch -- this worked excellent. I feel bad about Isobel and the 'pink slip'. *sigh* Well, I guess as long as she doesn't go the way of Siobhan? >.> *snickers and hugs Bridget before running off*
Author's Response: Jan and her Mallet are quite important to this fic *nods* Melinda and Albus are an interesting pair of conspirators. Bart isn\'t exactly going to like it though. He has good instincts for when his wife is not being competely honest with him. Siobhan? :X
Summary: What no one else could do, she will, when the church bells ring.
So, strangely enough, I take my tiramisu out of the fridge, and I bring it upstairs and sit down at the computer, and start to eat it and I wander onto the forums were I see Patrick has posted in the Story Update thread. And I though, surely not, it can't be...
This is phenomental. This is amazing. This is not only the best thing you've ever written; it's one of the best things anyone's ever written! *DIES*. I'm going to leave you a proper SPEWly review from GV711. I was torn between leaving you a spammalicious review right away or a good proper one later, but I'm just goint to have to settle for both.
SERIOUSLY. PATRICK. I don't think you get how much I LOVE this story. It's bloody phenomenal. SIDFJodsifjowiaerjoiwaejriejfdf. omg, I need to go breathe. x.x
Author's Response: OMG SPAMMALICIOUS REVIEW FROM JENNA. This is such an honor... this just made my day <3 *hug* I am SO glad you liked it!!
Summary: Isla was born into a well-known and respected family: the Blacks. She grew up with their traditions and was proud to be who she was – until she met someone who showed her that what she knew was not the only world.
Follow a young witch through her teenage years and discover how a traditional one will change and rebel against what she believed was the only truth.
Okay, Chapter 7! :)
I really enjoy the opening to this chapter; again, we step out of Isla's POV again, which is sort of peculiar, but I find that - because this is the second time you've done this - it's more justified. It's, perhaps not a pattern, but an occurence. On top of that, it is written very well. The flow and structure is lovely, and it's always wonderful to start a chapter with a nice, well-put together bit of narration. It's also, in general, a very nice introduction. (Chapter introductions are a bit of a weak spot for me, personally, so I have a deep appreciation when I see a chapter that opens as smoothly as this one.)
I also like the little bit about Isla's choosing her classes; it of course fits her upbringing very well that she wouldn't take Divination or Muggle Studies. And the note that she's not taking CoMC because "father and Phin" didn't recommend it is a good one, too. I like that you're developing her over time, and in steps. She's still a Black, clearly, not evening giving Muggle Studies a thought, and making her decisions based on the "recommendations" of her father and brother - but she's also willingly (and sneakily) befriending a Muggleborn. A lot of authors would just do this sort of change overnight, but this is much more natural and believable.
On two minor notes: I like the recurring mentions of Robert's sloppy handwriting (little touches like that are fabulous), as well as how he used Stella & Solaris for nicknames. *small squee* >.>
Robert and Isla's exchange, when he asks her "is this what you call friendship" - very well done. I like that she walks away. In any real situation, when confronted with something as complex and as emotional as what Robert has said, it's difficult to respond, and you do sort of need time to process. I think her walking away is as much a sign of strength as it is weakness. Weak because she's confused and human, and strong because some people might have stayed and just said whatever nonsense came to their head.
I'm growing even more fond of Robert. He's just so sincere, about everything - his beliefs and his feelings. He's really a beautiful person, and he's exactly the sort of person who would help someone like Isla escape from her upbringing. You have built is character wonderfully.
Now to Savaric. He's getting more dangerous, this is clear. He's controlling his temper, but that's making him worse; it merely shows that he's more methodical, and can release his anger at will. I honestly had difficult breathing during his "conversation" with Isla.
And, ah! The letter from Isla's father (who I now know I can refer to as Perseus) was - so powerful. Just, him referring to Savaric as Isla's superior, and saying his word is Isla's law. Ugh. I hope they all perish in a very painful fire. The letter was written absolutely exquisitly. (The only thing that caught my eye was the stressed words with bold or a change in italics; in letters, I think it would make more sense to represent stresses with an underline, as that is the way one generally stresses something in writing. Either that or all-caps, but I think that Perseus would be more of an underliner than a capslocker)
Oh, and then the letter from Lyrae. That made me happy. And it was an absolutely wonderful, wonderful note to end the chapter on: "you are first you. That should be your most important duty." It's such a resounding, and very important sentiment.
Again, I think I will leave this review at this chapter. I think that this is my favourite chapter so far. It is so very well written, your characterisation is magnficent, and I could really, can still feel a tension in my chest from reading, because it was so intense. *applauds*
Author's Response: Jenna, once again thanks for your thought-out review. It's great to know what you feel and see when reading the story. And I had to laugh at your comment that you hope they all perish in a very painful fire. LOL And thanks for the applause at the end. *humbly bows*
Once again, I'm having a little trouble breathing normally while reading.
The insight to Savaric's mind was fascinating. Atreus's advice was -- all too perfect. While it would seem to put Isla in less danger, physically, I'm worried that if he does start behaving as Atreus advised, Isla will take a couple of steps back. Whatever happens, it's a fascinating development, and again, it paces the story wonderfully. Instead of just plowing through with Savaric's merciless cruelty, the flow has shifted slightly.
I enjoyed the flashback to when Isla first met the Muggles. And I liked how it echoed the scene in the compartment when she replied to Savaric that the Robert and Helen didn't look diseased, just like she said that the Muggles didn't look poisonous. And I think this is also a nice overall affect of her being logical, just as you developed with her interest in Arithmancy.
Another note I enjoyed was how she's manged to hide some of her emotions using her pureblood facade; it's interesting that her family should hand her a tool that she can use against them, and it also reinforces the idea that, whatever her own beliefs, she is still a Black. I don't think we really see that enough in the estranged-pureblood-type characters.
I enjoyed Lyrae's letter, and I do feel rather sorry for her. It did clear up the meaning behind her snapping at Isla at St Mungo's though. I had been wondering about that; I don't know if I remembered to mention it in my review. I like that you've used the surname Moon; I've noticed that one at Harry's Sorting myself and have it on-hand if I ever need next-generation characters to fill in the blanks. And of course, you've used Longbottom, Greengrass, and Potter as well; very nice. :)
I did notice one particularly modern speech usage, and that was "You are way unprepared." I think, even in the 20th century, someone such as Perseus Black would probably avoid this phrase. "You are far too unprepared," would be more fitting.
I'm glad to see Elle again. And her character shone through even in the small glimpse of her. I can see that Bellatrix inherited her ancestor's disposition ;)
The level of complexity in the conversation between Savaric and Isla at the end is astounding; I'm trying to wrap myhead around it. Savaric is so incredibly pureblood. I almost feel a slight twinge of pity for him, not because I'm think he is isn't perfectly happy, but because, I wonder if he truly thinks for himself at all, or if it's all pureblood upbringing mixed with a raging temperament. It doesn't surprise me that he would be the sort to look at an 8-year-old and see his future bride.
Of course, his reason for choosingIsla makes perfect sense. He has such a hunger for control, of course he would want someone who was a challenge. Something like a particularly wild animal he could beat into submission. I'm surprised he told her, mainly because I wouldn't have expected it. But, while it makes Isla aware of his intentions, it also traps her a little because he's saying that he knows what she's about and isn't going to let her get away. It's more fear; but at the same time, I'm glad that Isla has the awareness.
Author's Response: Another great review, and slowly I'm running short on adjectives of how describe them: brilliant, wonderful, fantastic, awesome... and many things more. And I don't know if you're already tired of hearing it, but I once more give out my most humble thanks. I'm flattened by your compliments, and in the light of Shining Through Blackness being my first ever published fanfiction, it really means the world to me to know that my characterisation and plot went the right way. Thank you.
*sigh* As this chapter opens, I find myself frustrated with Isla for falling for Savaric's change of strategy. Yet, by Christmas morning, I find myself falling for it a little, too. Of course, I can't resist a little developing romance, and a kiss on the forehead. And, naturally, it doesn't help that I love a Slytherin.And I find myself wondering if maybe Savaric can learn to change a little? Maybe now that he's older, he might develop actual feelings for Isla, which might soften him - which is all ridiculous because I know that Isla Black marries Bob Hitchens. *sighs*
I don't know how to feel about his Christmas Present. On one hand, I'm glad that he did it. On the other hand, I'm a little miffed that he thinks his permission is the equivalent of a gift.
And this, I believe I only got impatient once and made to slap him on his cheek, but he had caught my wrist before gently turning my hand and kissing the top of it... I mean, ah! The fact that he still has enough control to catch her wrist, but he doesn't retaliate outright. Instead he charms her - and me. x.x
I'm so conflicted. I blame you.
And, Robert, on the sidelines, feeling jealous. *sigh* This story, despite the wavering bond between Isla and Robert, and despite the betrothal between her and Savaric, was not yet a romance. But now it is, and I'm all a flutter at everything. And, I don't even care that I know Savaric can be dangerous, I still treasure the kiss they share, and find myself craving more. It's just so wrong that it's right.
I winced at the description of what happened when Perseus hit Isla, and all through the scene when she woke up and Savaric was healing her. *shudders* And then, ahem, the scene after he healed her. Well, I'll just say it was written very well and leave it at that. >.> (Also, quickly, want to note the use of the word "jerk", which is a modern slang term.)
And, she's naming the cat Solaris. Gah! I love that, too. What a wonderful web you weave.
And, I get to the end of the chapter, and am very, very excited for the next - only to gladly remember that it's sitting on my computer in a folder :D *runs off*
And. Damnit. I just realised I've reviewed all these chapters while logged into TheVault, my other screename, which I generally don't review on. Alas. x.x It's still me, Jenna. I think you might have probably figured that out, though.
Author's Response: I didn't notice that you typed under TheVault either, but I know it's you, so - no harm done, Jenna. Thanks for another great review, and I had to chuckle at your statement that you're conflicted and that you blame me. Good to know that my characters allow others to feel with them.