Hi! Tagging you from Review Tag!
So before I chose one of your one shots and I really enjoyed it. Enough that I wanted to try out your longer work. It seems from your author's note that this was the first story you started. For your maiden voyage, this chapter was really good.
That said, what have you done to my Rosie? You should know that I'm very partial to Rose. I really adore the character, thinking of her as this mix of the best and worst traits of her mother and father. She's a joy to write, and I get the sense that something terrible has happened to her and we're only beginning to scratch the surface of what she's dealing with. What have you done to my Rosie, Beth? //pounds fist//
All kidding aside, I really like the way you introduced whatever it is that's happened to her. For this first chapter, you introduced to the symptoms, you gave us an idea of when the trauma occurred and you gave us a name. That's plenty for a first chapter, and it gives me a lot of reason to keep reading. Excellent storytelling technique! You did manage to deliver quite a bit of information in this chapter -- who Rose's friends are, how their sorting went, etc. -- but you kept it tight within the flow of the narrative.
Rose's symptoms are textbook PTSD type stuff. She has the panic attacks. She keeps playing "what if" with herself. She seems to even blame herself to a certain extent. It's sad to read, even sadder because it seems like she's succeeded to a great extent in keeping it secret from the people closest to her. Such a shame, because I'm sure she could be so much better supported. At the same time, it's likely that she doesn't want to need their support. Thus, the cycle continues.
Get up, wash, get dressed, class, rounds, study. -- Her mantra makes it clear what her coping mechanism is. Stick to routine, keep yourself grounded in the familiar. It's functional, but eventually the familiar becomes its own sort of prison.
Selenia seems like a very intriguing original character. I'm sure Al's grandfather and his aunt Hermione were both thrilled to see him in love with a muggle-born. Especially one so inquisitive and eager.
I did see one lonely typo as I was reading:
Her long, straight black hair and made her look very serious, but I could tell she was really excited to enter the wizarding world by the shine in her bright blue eyes. -- There's something up with that first part of this sentence. I think maybe the word "and" doesn't belong.
One other thing that sounded a little out of character to me was McGonagall falling out of her seat. No matter how shocked she was, it's hard to imagine her losing her composure to that extent.
Very good opening chapter. It definitely made me want to read more!
Author's Response: Hi Dan!
Oh boy, I was nervous you would get to this one... Thank you for being so kind. I feel like my writing is a little better with the one shots, where I can focus on technique and imagery, but I get a little muddled when it comes to the novel because I work too hard to move the story along. I do like this chapter, but subsequent ones are more about getting the information than interesting descriptions.
Rosie. I know. She is my favorite character too. I think that is why I wrote about her first. This story just took shape in my head and wouldn't stop adding to itself. I had to get it down. I wrote most of it on my laptop six months before I even joined this site. By February, I had about 13 chapters up and then decided on a major plot change and took almost all of them down. Now I am editing them to make it all fit.
Rose is in a bad place, and, if you like damaged characters, I think you will be happy with the next few chapters as well. I have a different take on the Rose/Scorpius love story.
Selenia is awesome. She is Al's forever love and second half. She is also Rose's BFF, so she will be in the story a lot.
I know it is not very McGonagall like to fall out of her chair, but I had have something funny happen in the midst of the very serious panic attack.
I will fix that typo - thanks for finding it! I have stuff sitting in the queue right now and I am working on a novella, so I will get to it as soon as I can.
Thank you so much for the great review!