Hello again, gingersnape from the forums here with a review for you!
Wow, just wow. I was absolutely amazed by this story. Actually, I'm pretty amazed by all of your writing but this blew me away. See, usually I like it when first chapters mention a canon character so I have something to anchor the story to. I'm also a bit squeamish, so I was a little skeptical of this, but after reading through this, I was absolutely astonished by how much I had come to like the story over the course of 3000 words.
†Plot: As far as I know (I don't usually stray into the realms of fics centered around an illness, so I may be wrong.) this feels like a very original story and it also feels like a very strong story. From defining the characters and a main problem right from the start to making it all mysteriously interesting, this chapter has it all. I can't really say much on it now, but I feel like this is going to turn out very well.
Characterization: Because you have a few characters who deserve some attention, I'll just go down the list of characters who play a fairly large role in the story for you.
Freddy: I love her already. She's so funny and I can really relate to her, in that there are times when what is best for me is certainly not what makes me happy, but I also have a mixture of feeling really bad for poor poor Freddy as well as admiring her strength. Overall, I really like how she's developing so far and can't wait to get to see more of her. I haven't read Consumed, but now I really want to read it so I'm not behind on her characterization.
Nurse Jensis/Jenkins: Poor dear, always having her name mispronounces! (My mother had an often misspelled maiden name that kept getting mistaken for another similar name, so I can relate. She still jokes she married my dad so she would have a better surname. :D) I loved how her personality keeps getting added to with the simple things like her neatly written name tag or how well she had her hair ticked into her cap. I'm really getting a sense of who she is without realizing it, which is one of my favorite things to see in a character.
Healer Crane: I'm not exactly sure what I think of him at the moment, though right now I am going to say that his niceness is a little strange, but not something too weird... Just interesting. Overall, I like how you've shown him in all of the scenes that I have seen him in so far. He seems a little mysterious but mostly someone who draws my interest in because I'm really just curious to see how he will react to Freddy later in the story.
The glossary and notes on the bottom were quite helpful, and I really admire you for putting so much time and effort into researching this. It really shows in the story, and I am amazed by how thoroughly researched this was.
Spelling and Grammar: Erm. I can't exactly find anything. Maybe a comma, but this was spotless as far as I can tell.
Flow and Pacing: 'twas superb. It all had a wonderful rhythm that flowed in my head in a rather enchanting way. The writing Aline was enough to suck me into the story, and I felt like this was a very good first chapter.
Overall, I can't find anything to say for CC, so I suppose this was a very good fic. I really enjoyed reading this and can't wait to read the next chapter.
Have a great day,
Author's Response: Hiya gingersnape!
Oh wow. What a fantastic review! Thank you so very much! I cannot possibly express how grateful I am for your feedback. I truly appreciate all the time and effort you put into each of your reviews. Your comments were so wonderfully helpful. Again, thank you!
I'm so thrilled to hear that you enjoyed this first chapter, even though it only featured OCs. Although the canon characters in this story have significant roles, I do think the plot is mostly focused on OCs, which I suppose can be a turn off for some readers. ;) As for the descriptions of illness, etc. I tried my best not to be too icky, while at the same time, I wanted to give people a good idea of what having TB might be like. Unfortunately, although the Romantics and Victorians portrayed it as a glamorous illness, it really is awful.
And I'm glad you found the plot interesting. I have to admit, this story is a bit slow and most of the conflict is internal as opposed to external, which I think can certainly make things drag at times. ;)
I'm so pleased you were able to relate to Freddy right off the bat. Since she is the main character, I tried my best to make her likable, if not a bit prickly and stubborn. And she certainly doesn't like to do what's best for her, not that I can blame her. Being stuck in a hospital would probably make me cranky too, haha.
It's funny you should mention Nurse Jenkins' mispronounced surname and your mom's maiden name. I actually based Jenkins' predicament on a similar situation. My parents gave me a hyphenated last name when I was born, incorporating both of their surnames. Up until high school, I always went by my dad's surname, but as soon as I changed schools, my new teachers began to use my first surname and, of course they couldn't pronounce it. It was very annoying and confusing. Poor Jenkins indeed!
And you're spot-on when it comes to Crane. He's a bit of a mysterious guy and he certainly doesn't wear his motives on his sleeve. I will say that he definitely does have a hidden agenda, but it's not really sinister. Just strange, hehe. ;)
Yay, no typos! I really have to thank my betas for that. They always pick out my pesky mistakes.
Again, I'm so happy to hear that you enjoyed this first chapter, gingersnape. Your review was amazing. I absolutely loved it. I hope you have a great weekend! Take care!