|Review:||teh tarik says:|
Hello Val :) Erm, you requested a review from me nearly a month ago...*sheepish*. Well, here I am. Ooh, you're the second person who's requested for a chapter in the middle of the story :) I offer this in my original topic, but many requesters don't make use of this. Anyway, I'll do my best to comment on and critique this chapter without knowing any of the backstory and such.
You have a really lovely writing style; your writing is clear, sharp and concise. Your characters are fun to read and are engaging, and the interactions between them are lively and exciting. I really loved the sisters' relationships with each other - they're close; they're affectionate and light-hearted and bossy and ever so supportive of each other. But from what I've read, they're not all stuck together - Autumn does have her own life with her friends, and she does have Louis to occupy her time as well. The date between Louis and Autumn was simply lovely; I loved that they explored the workshop of Weasley's Wizard Wheezes. It certainly is a fitting location and it provides that perfect humorous joke-y atmosphere for their date.
The conversation between them about traditions was written wonderfully. It's cheerful and fluffy, but it still reveals things about the characters e.g. Autumn's attitude toward dating and relationships and romance. She certainly falls on the more traditional side :) And that does fit with the conventions of the romance genre; there's usually that sense of tradition, the need for a relationship to progress along a series of steps before becoming established. I would like to see a little experimentation with moods and with different sides to the Louis/Autumn relationship e.g. the less pleasant moments, the conflicts etc. I'm sure there'll be plenty of these in future chapters :)
I think one of your writing strengths is dialogue. The dialogue is quick and witty and sharp and it really sparkles. Not many writers can write a wonderful and funny dialogue scene without sounding too forced - but your dialogue is so natural with a nice lovely flow, so well done.
Some critique (and I hope you don't mind, but I tend to be more critical in requested reviews): this is a fairly fast-paced chapter - there is a lot of movement through time, and there are many different sections jumping ahead, which sort of weakens the focus of the plot (because your story certainly does have a plot - an interesting one, too). What I'm trying to say is that there might be too many things in this chapter. I do feel that some of the scenes don't cohere too well, and some of them aren't quite necessary e.g. the first bit about the girls picking out an outfit for Autumn. Later there's another scene of the girls picking out yet another outfit for her. I think you definitely don't need two such similar scenes within the same chapter, because it can be a bit repetitive. You've already shown us that Autumn has an inability to dress with acceptable style ^.^
What I would suggest about the numerous sections is to perhaps really focus on two or three main events, e.g. the date and the party with the strange magic part at the end, and really elaborate on those scenes a little. Include a little more description to break up the long dialogue segments, to perhaps give a sense of the setting, or how the characters orientate themselves within their environment. Hope I'm not confusing you!
Anyway, I found that last bit with the strange magic parts really intriguing! I've never read anything like that in fanfic, so great work for originality. It's so refreshing to read a humour/romance/YA next gen fic set in Hogwarts with a nice touch of mystery and strange happenings. So many fanfic writers tend to forget how magical Hogwarts is, and they don't make full use of the wonderful setting. So I'm so glad to see this bit of mystery magic in your story. This was a great way to end the chapter. Just ♥ how Louis' wolf patronus pops out of Autumn's wand like that :) Maybe someday in the future it will be herself reciting that charm, and the wolf will pop out of her wand by itself. Because Autumn/Louis. Is such a cute ship. Auouis is a wonderful ship name, by the way. It sounds French.
Great writing, Val! Thanks for requesting and massive apologies for the delay :)
Author's Response: Hi teh! No worries about time, I understand that RL comes first -- how sad, isn't it?
I'm very happy you picked up on the relationships between the characters, because it's really something I wanted the story to center on, and not just in terms of ships.
Autumn is definitely on the traditional side, more than she'd like... She and Louis aren't actually dating yet, but there will also be less pleasant moments, of course.
Of course I don't mind criticism! If I did, I probably wouldn't even bother with Internet. Your point about this being fast-paced was already made on another chapter, and I thought this one was reasonably slow, but I'll definitely see where I can slow things down a bit, and where I can make transitions smoother.
However, the scene with the magic at the end is deliberately confusing, because it's an important part of the plot and I want the reader as confused as the characters for now -- does that make any sense?
Hm, as for Autumn's Patronus, well, my lips are sealed as well!
Thank you for the lovely detailed review, and again no need to apologise about the delay :)