Hello darling! Here for a bit of review tag! (I've been meaning to pop over anyway and so finally getting around to it).
I don't know why, but something inexplicable drew me to this short story collection. I couldn't tell you what, but I was intrigued. Of course, that is thanks to your summary. Usually, I like short, snappy summaries, but yours was mysterious. That's a very difficult feat to accomplish, in my opinion, without sounding like one of those corny synopses on the back of a novel. So, bravo on the summary.
And your inclusion of lines from Paradise Lost! So, so perfect! Great way to introduce the chapter and, yet again, give us that mysterious, haunting feel. Voldemort is dead here, but there remains a sense of terror. I like it. Now, your narrator, Nott. I love the contrasts in his characterization/thoughts/personality. He is at once a loving father and a loyal follower of Voldemort. He has tender, kind memories of his youngest son and wretched, torturous memories of murdering those unlike him. It's a striking, wonderful contrast and one you pull of so well. I think that, as readers, we sometimes get caught up and do not realize that we ourselves are often a study in contrasts. We think that a character should have one particular trait and stay that way, but real life, real people don't do that. We're constantly changing and struggling against the forces of nature, of life, of others, of words, of actions. It's a twisted irony, I think. Anyway, that's probably one of the things I loved most about this story - the contrasts.
"The motley louse Weasley" - It's not supposed to be funny, it's supposed to be degrading, but this honestly cracked me up. I couldn't help but chuckle a little bit. We see the Weasleys as endearing, if not poor, people. They see them as dirty, ratty blood traitors and that couldn't be further from the truth. In fanfiction, we often see the Death Eater mentality from Bellatrix stories, but I like that you've chosen someone different and almost equally malicious (were it not for his love of his sons). Gosh, I just cannot get over the beauty of the contrasts! Ah
Well, after that nonsensical ramble, I suppose I should tell you that I enjoyed this immensely. Wonderful job!
Author's Response: Hi! What a lovely surprise of a review! :)
I'm glad you liked the summary, especially since I changed it around a lot and was a little concerned! Hearing that it drew you in is great to hear!
I'm glad you liked the PL quote at beginning, I thought some of the themes of PL, especially the confusion of good and evil, were relevant to this story. I'm glad you liked Nott, and you're right, he really is full of contrasts! I think that, like the Malfoys, none of the Death Eaters would be entirely dark or good, and that their good natures come and go. I enjoyed writing him and playing around with the different layers to his personality!
That's such a wonderful point about how readers like to interpret characters, and I've definitely been guilty of that myself! My characters feel much more realistic to me through these contrasts, and I'm so happy that you enjoyed them! :)
Haha, I thought that line was funny too! I see Nott as being wicked and hard-hearted like Bellatrix, but without the bloodlust factor... he actually does have something to protect and live for in his sons.
Thank you so much for this really lovely review!! :D