Hello, Susan! I saw you'd posted in the new story thread, and it kicked my curiosity into high gear. Paired with your banner (absolutely gorgeous!), your summary, and my own writer's block, and the fact that I've really meant to head on over here anyway, there wasn't a thing that could keep me away.Hello, Susan! I saw you'd posted in the new story thread, and it kicked my curiosity into high gear. Paired with your banner (absolutely gorgeous!), your summary, and my own writer's block, and the fact that I've really meant to head on over here anyway, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to come on by. And I'm really, really, really glad I did!
Straight up, your writing style is to-die-for gorgeous. I can't think of a time when I've read lovelier -- each word seems deliberately placed, and I could get an instant feel for both the setting and your characterization of Moody from it. (You seem to see Hogwarts as your own, too, not just a movie rendition, and you've got no idea how much I appreciate this. From the onset, that made me even happier to read this than I already was!) I love Moody's internal thoughts, too -- calculating, cool, untrusting, but you can clearly see that he is an Auror, just from the way he thinks. It's that sort of characterization, showing instead of telling, that really sets writers apart. I cannot commend you on that enough.
Your plot has me HOOKED, and this chapter ended much, much too soon. I want to know more, immediately! All about that poison pen letter and how Riddle factors into it; why Dumbledore trusts McGonagall, and what her involvement in the plot is; how Moody's going to operate. Just thinking about it is making me really, really excited, in a very geek-ish sort of way, because I can already see these sorts of twisty things going down, spying and espionage and the like. The plot's perfect for a film noir-esque story, too, and if you win this challenge I wouldn't be surprised in the least!
I'm so glad I made my way over here -- as expected, your writing's as far from disappointing as it gets. And if you'll ignore the poor syntax in that sentence, you can get a feel for just how anxious I am for your update. (I've already added this to my favorites to watch for updates, because I am determined not to miss a single one!) This is going to be so good -- I can already tell! Fantastic job!
Author's Response: *jaw drops*
Oh my gosh, this is amazing! When I first saw this review from you, I read through it in a daze, and I don't know if I've quite gotten over that yet. I wasn't sure how people would take this story - of course I had hopes, but using a less-popular character not to mention a less-popular genre, I knew that it was unlikely. But hearing your praise about this story is truly amazing, and I can't thank you enough for taking the time to read and review. :D
What's fun about the stylistic stories I'm currently writing (this one and "Pride & Pestilence") is that they are very atmosphere-heavy, allowing me the opportunity to adjust the Potterverse to fit the story. So this one is "Hogwarts Noir", highlighting the darkest elements of the castle and its history, as well as of the wizarding world in general. It's fun to see it all in black and white, with lots of shadows and high contrast, and it suits Moody very well - I can definitely see him in a fedora and long coat, cigarette hanging from his mouth, talking tough and using his wand before asking. XD This is what happens when you watch too many movies - I just close my eyes, think of the story, and make images from all the film noirs I've seen fit the magical world.
This is pre-Mad Eye Moody, so he is rather more Auror-like than what we saw in the books, where he was more a caricature. He's one of those street-smart detectives, though now that I think about it, to become an Auror, he must have also done well in his classes (DADA would have been his best, hands-down), so I'll have to keep that in mind with him, too.
I currently have no idea how I'm going to make all of the plot points fit together. *hides* I've got my fingers crossed that they do, but if I miss something, I can use the excuse the film noirs usually left lot of strings hanging at the end. :P I have a great twist in mind, though, and I'm looking forward to seeing peoples' reactions to it. :D
Thank you again for reading and reviewing this story, but most of all for enjoying it so much. That means a lot. ^_^