|Review:||Cherry Bear says:|
I'm struggling to find the words to respond to this, but I don't think I can. Nothing I write in a review can possibly be as eloquent as what you have written here, so I shall have to settle for merely getting my point across: this was one of the most powerful well-written pieces of writing I have ever read, and I don't say that lightly.
From the beginning, this story had me captivated. I'm accustomed to wincing at stories that start with lengthy paragraphs and long descriptive sentences; usually they are poorly written and can hardly hold my attention. However, from that first sentence, I was truly and irreversibly hooked. I think it might've been your word choice, or maybe your sentence structure, or something like that that enchants me so; whatever it is, I can't say much about your style of writing except that it is simply amazing.
I found none of your phrases trite or cliched, which is a rarity in fanfiction and fiction alike. You ease into metaphors and personification and other literary devices without making it seem like you're making a desperate attempt to be poetic. The best example I can give of this is Rose's description of her emotional cage - how it's not some complicated metaphor that readers have to strain to understand, how it's simple yet not overdone. Something that I adored equally as much was your use of the present tense; I think the present tense is vastly underrated for how fun it is to write in, and I think that using it made your story much more intoxicating than if it had been in the past tense.
I find myself alternating between despising Rose and completely understanding her actions and emotions, which is definitely a rare occurrence. I think your characterization of her was complex and realistic. Her actions are selfish (and she knows that they are selfish), but she needs the self-assurance; she needs to believe that she can do it, that she can defy people's expectations of her. What scares me the most about this story is that there's a part of me, however small, that is just like Rose - a part of me that wonders if I'm capable of not being who people think I am, a part of me that dares myself to do what I would never even dream of. I think that there is a piece of this in everyone, whether or not they know it, and that is what makes this story so incredible.
Something that really stood out to me in this story was your mention of the stars. I particularly enjoyed the line, "The stars will witness their betrayal," and how you tied that same idea back into the ending. The last line left me with a heavy heart and even heavier contemplations. I thought that your choice of title was especially interesting considering that last line. I've always considered wildfire to represent passion - dangerous, reckless passion that leaves only a trail of guilt in its wake. Your story holds particularly true to that idea of wildfire. And maybe it's just me hunting for symbolism where there is none, but I thought that the ending seemed almost to be saying that that passion, or wildfire, had now fully been extinguished, and she was in darkness. But, as I said, that's probably just me looking much too far into simple lines.
I don't really know what else to say except that I think you're an amazing author. When I get the chance, I'll definitely check out the rest of your stories and leave reviews that will hopefully be much easier to understand than this one (:
Author's Response: I really wish I could find the words to tell you how happy this review made me, and how grateful I am that you took the time to review at such great length.
I am the same as you - I often shy away from reading lots of description. Unfortunately, it's what I find easiest to write and i really do appreciate your efforts in reading my story even though it's heavy on the narrative side. I'm completely over the moon that you were hooked, because I think that's how description should work. I hate it when I'm tempted to skip over description even though I know it's so important for a story. And wow - I never really thought about which techniques I was using, in fact I probably couldn't tell you now where I'd used personification or metaphors. But the fact that you found it natural enough really really makes me happy because it's so easy to go overboard with description and it's lovely to hear I didnt do that.
I love present tense! I'm going through a phase of completely adoring it at the moment. I used to be such a past tense sort of girl, but present tense offers a completely different way of writing.
Yes, I think within us all is that strangely selfish, but desperate, nature. I really wanted to make her as human as possible because that's really really hard to do; hearing that you could relate to her is such a joy to my ears (or eyes, in this case!). Also, I think it's fun to hunt for symbolism, even though in my case it's always unintended; I think wildfire for me represents something that spreads quickly and is uncontrollable, just like Rose was in that situation; she was taken over by something rather powerful inside her and she needed to act on it. But yes, in its wake, wildfire leaves that trail of destruction and ... emptiness, or lifelessness. So in a way, your interpretation was spot on. I just hadn't thought of it until now :)
thank you SO much for this review, it's made my week!