Hi darling! Finally here for your requested review :)!
I think you've done a really good job setting the story up. I love the idea of a home school student having to adjust to Hogwarts, and think that it will be really interesting to see her have to adjust to the crazy kind of magic that is constantly apart of the castle.
You also made me understand very well that, though Charlie (awesome name choice, btw. My sister's name is Charli, so if I forget the E during this review, that's why ;) ) is a sarcastic teenager, she still does love her parents very much and they obviously care deeply about her despite her mum's... umm.. eccentric behaviors.
I was curious about why Charlie's parents had now decided to let her attend Hogwarts, as well as why McGonagall said that in her case the ministry decided it was best if they make an expedition.. I hope that we do find out eventually what exactly her case is :) I love that you've opened up those new questions, because it makes a reader wants to continue on to find out just more about what brought her here.
I think that you handled the scene with McGonagall well, but I was a little surprised that she didn't have a prefect show her to the Gryffindor tower. It is a very big castle. I was also curious as to where exactly these photographs are plastered. I think you should clarify if they are just on the back wall that her bed leans against, because saying 'walls' makes me think she went around the entire girls dorm and plastered them up. It's hard to imagine there being an awful lot of room in their own personal space.. because they really only have the curtain, so I think the most realistic option would to have maybe two or three photos in frames on the nightstand. That way the reader would easily be able to imagine the scene and continue staying involved in the story, as opposed to trying to figure out exactly how these pictures were covering the walls.
Also, and you might not mind this but I just thought I'd point it out, your OC's have *very* similar voices. Charlie and Izzy honestly feel like the same person in different situations. This won't matter if your reader only reads one story, but if someone wants to read both your novels, they might have a hard time because it's like trying to imagine the same character in a completly different life. But like I said, that might not matter to you at all and it doesn't directly relate to this story, but I thought it would point it out.
Oh and clearly Charlie's entrance in the school, and more specifically the certain bed int eh Gryffindor dorm, is not being taken well. I'm guessing this is a very close friend of the missing girls?
Again, I love that you've opened up a few questions on this first chapter!
This is a really interesting start, m'dear. I think you've got a lot of room to play here, and have already opened up a good amount of subplots you could work with if you chose to :). I would suggest more relative details. You do a good job of painting a picture, but the things you describe don't really really tell us much about the characters. Like the Hello Kitty shoes she puts on.. instead of just saying what kind you could have said, "I slipped the Hello Kitty shoes that I'd spent month's begging mum for," (that would let us know that Charlie isn't often indulged by her parents. Or, "I slipped on the Hello Kitty shoes that I didn't let out of my sight since the day I purchased them," (this would tell us that Charlie earns her own money, whether a part time job or chores)... just little details that apply directly to your character can go a long way into helping us understand who they are, without seeming out of place.
I am so happy I had the chance to read this first chapter! Like I said, you've really created an interesting start here! I hope this review was helpful, and please feel free to re-request for chapter 2!
Author's Response: Hey there, and thanks for the review!
I'm glad you think I set the story up well-I guess a good first chapter is very important for drawing your readers in, making them want to read more!
I definitely agree with the Prefect suggestion-it kind of doesn't make sense for Charlie to just go off to the dormitory herself, so I'll absolutely go back and make adjustments to that-maybe even have Nearly Headless Nick show her around the castle?
I also see what you mean by the 'walls' bit, but the fact that these photos are on the walls...well, it sort of becomes an important feature later on. However I think I will take up your suggestion and have some of these photos in frames on the nightstand, as well.
Your comment about Izzy and Charlie makes sense, though I really hope as both stories develop, we are able to see their many differences. I think that Charlie's awkwardness and Izzy's temper will eventually mean that their voices are very different-though we'll have to see about that! I guess this just reflects my style of writing...
Imagery and description has always been one of my weaker points, but I've never really been told specifically what I could do to improve so your suggestions are super helpful, thank you!
I'm glad you enjoyed this chapter and your review has been so helpfulk--I am going back to look over it at the first chance I get! Thank you so much!