|Review:||Athene Goodstrength says:|
Heya, thanks again for reviewing A Growing Gathering! I thought I'd review one of your stories as thanks. I've never read a Fleur fic before, so I was intrigued by this.
Overall, I really enjoyed this story. I feel like you put a lot of thought into it and your portrayal of Fleur is very well thought-out. The subplot that J.K. wrote about the relationship between Fleur, Bill and also Molly was great but I feel like it gets ignored quite a lot! So I really enjoyed seeing some of Fleur's side of it here.
I had one issue with the writing, which was just that Fleur's accent is so thick that I found it difficult to concentrate on what she was saying! However I can't really remember how thick it was in the books, so I can't really judge :)
So, here are the things I loved:
"She rose from the blanket that the two had been sharing, throwing her waves of gold behind her as she stalked to the edge of the pond" -this image was really strong, I liked it very much.
"He knew he loved this woman; this misunderstood, spoiled, conceited, caring and selfless woman" This is perfect. I feel like you really get a glimpse into what their relationship would be like- she's absolutely not perfect (who is?) and Bill knows that, but he loves her for it. It's very grown-up, it's very nicely written.
I really enjoyed the idea that Fleur would throw a memory at Bill in an argument! Going to have to try very hard not to plagiarize you with that one!!
The reminder that Fleur would have been affected by Cedric's death is really nice, although I was a little confused as to when this memory occurs - I know she's in uniform, but she's with her family, and she seems to be in Britain so I'm guessing it's on their way home after the Triwizard tournament??
The Gabrielle story was great. Being a big sister, I can sympathise with Fleur. I'd probably do the same thing if someone attacked my sister... except for the spitting. That was a bit scary. But she is part Veela after all.
I liked the scene with Bill in the hospital, although Fleur's accent made it hard reading! This line was perfect though: 'People will look at us and see my beauty and your courage, and zey will see 'ow perfectly we fit together'. I feel like Rowling herself could have written that line.
Next section: I love Molly Weasley! I feel like you wrote her well too, warm and honest, yet commanding. 'I also know that he would have never dreamed of asking you to be his wife, if he wasn't sure that it would last forever. Don't doubt him.' I love this. The final three words remind me of Dumbledore's line about Harry, 'Harry is the best hope we have. Trust him.'
The juxtaposition between the wedding and the funeral was good, if painful! I did struggle to read the section at Shell Cottage after Fred's funeral, it was a little unclear as to what was going on I felt. Once I realised that they were all sitting around adding to the Pensieve- well, I loved it. SO beautiful. Truly, an inspired scene. The only thing I didn't like was Bill calling Fleur 'baby'! It felt a bit American and jumped out at me. 'Darling', 'sweetheart', 'my love', or even (stretching it a little) 'cherie' would have fit better, in my opinion.
I really like the final scene, the way you end the story on a note of hope. However, it did seem a bit odd that neither Fleur nor Bill knew what the other was talking about. I'm guessing Bill had a long day at the office and Fleur already has baby brain. This section really jumped out at me: "She let her mind wander to the first time he did that; after a long picnic by the beach flirting and laughing, when she forced him to see the painful memory as proof of her strength, then he took her in his arms and kissed her, finally agreeing to be her lover." I love this. I love the idea that she's had to fight to be with him (it actually reminds me of Lupin and Tonks as well... maybe Fleur and Bill are Lupin and Tonks in a safe, optimistic world). The only thing that puzzled me was that Fleur was by a pond to begin with, and then she remembers them picnicking by the sea.
Overall, I really enjoyed this story and it gave me a glimpse into a relationship that I haven't read much about. You are a strong writer, with a vivid and sensitive imagination. The way you understand human relationships in this story makes me want to read more.
There are a few grammar and spelling issues, but I've gone on for far too long already!
Author's Response: Thank you for catching the sea/pond thing!! I wrote parts of this at different times and didn't even catch it.
Okay, you have mentally screwed me up. I JUST added the bit about Molly, it isn't validated yet. You can see it?!? Hmm. I wonder if you can see all the edits? I did also tone down Fleur's accent, but if you are seeing the edited version of this, it sounds Like I need to tone it down more.
Thank you so much for the review!! The amount of thought you put in to it is so sweet and wonderful. Thank you for pointing out that baby is more American (I'm in the US) I always forget about those kind of things. I think I'll do darling. I'm almost afraid to edit it now that I've been blessed with this little unvalidated visible miracle, haha!!
Thank you so much for reading, I'll be heading over to the second chapter of yours as soon as I get some time :)!