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Review:blueirony says:
And I thought I was good at stalking? How did I manage to let this one slip my radar? Argh. I'm going to have to work on getting some new equipment installed.

...

Not that I, you know, stalk people with equipment or anything... *coughs uncomfortably*

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This was so sweet. It took me a while to work out who you were talking about but I found that I didn't mind all that much. The pain of losing a mother is the same, no matter who it affects. And I really like how you just gave us clues as to who it was. You didn't make a big deal of saying who it was, or even who the mother was. It was impersonal, but it made it more personal. I don't know why that happens, but it does. Not mentioning names in writing often gets this connection to the reader because it is all the more relatable.

Some of the sentences in this were just really sweet and lovely. Particularly this: Patiently, she smoothed his motions, guided his rough, calloused hands, taught his fingers. By the time she left my father was passing fair at ribbons and clips, ponytails and plaits. One of my friends lost her mother when we were around five or six and it brings back memories of how her dad really did learn how to plait her gorgeous every day before school.

This was so... tender. There was just this underlying sweetness and fragilty to this and I almost feel like if I talk too much about it, it will break. And it ties in with the emotion so well.

I like the that you made Tony a squib. It is just another layer that he has to deal with, but he tries not to let it get in the way of his dad and how his dad is mourning. And it sort of shows that not everything in the world is perfect.

The way you described Ron in this was beautiful. It's funny how you described him from his son's POV, yet I could really see Ron in my mind's eye. His heartbreak, yet his determination to continue his life was so heartbreaking, yet lovely at the same time.

This story was also slow. I don't mean the pace, but it just seemed to be... slow. It sort of ties in what I was saying before about it being delicate. It was like the heartbreak and mourning over the loss of a mother and a wife is so great, that everything afterwards needs to be done with extra care, everything needs to be done slowly. And you had that here. You didn't expressly mention it, but it was there. I don't know how much sense what I just said made but, argh, it's so hard to describe what I'm feeling while I read this.

I think this is my favourite of yours yet. It was so simple and you didn't really overcharge the emotion, yet it was probably more emotive than anything else. It goes back to that impersonal/personal thing. Without explicitly talking about something or someone, you managed to describe that thing or person better than you ever could had you delved into length descriptions of it or them.

I'm going to read this again when I post my review.

Joop :)

Author's Response: I don't think stalking equimpment is set up to deal with author's who only update once a year, so don't feel too bad about letting this story slip through. Your equimpment is probably fine.

And my lips are sealed about you and the stalking...

Aw - I'm so glad you liked it! And yeah, I know it can be hard to figure out who it's talking about at first, but it just worked so much better this way when I was writing it, to not spell things out so bluntly. I'm glad you thought it worked!

The part about Ginny teaching Ron how to do the girl's hair is really the part that this whole story was created around. I was talking to some I knew once who lost his mother when he was young and he told me how his dad worked so hard to learn how to fix his sisters' hair. It just really struck me so hard - as such a quiet and ultimate way to show love - and I knew I wanted to use it in a story. The rest of this story just grew around it. I tried using the canon kids for Ron and Hermione, but it didn't work because I needed more girls - so I scraped it and created my own kids.

Joop - I must say, reading your reviews is like reading a great story in and of itself. You write reviews with the same beautiful language you write your stories, and I love it. You give me warm fuzzies everytime I read them! Thank you so much for such high praise written in such a beautiful (and sometimes fun and insane) way!

Ron has always struck me as a one-girl guy (once he got over being an idiot and admitted it) and I have always pictured him as the type that wouldn't get over the death of Hermione. So, it was just natural to use him for this.

I'm really so honored you liked this story, even enough to say it might be your favorite of mine! WOW! Thank you so, so, so much! I'm beyond flattered!


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