Reading Reviews for The Last Letter
47 Reviews Found

Review #26, by Celestie The Last Letter

15th August 2009:
Hello, this is Celestie from the Review Tag forum. ;)

Wow, I loved this. Straight into my favorites it goes. You kept both Petunia and Vernon wonderfully in character. I was cracking up over Vernon's decision to buy an alarm system. So typically Vernon - investing his faith in something shiny and expensive. XD

You captured Petunia's reflections over Lily's last letter very well. It was so poignant. The ending was a little unexpected, but touching nonetheless. You are a very talented writer; I shall be reading more of your work in the future!

Well done!

- Celeste

Author's Response: Thank you for the wonderful review and compliments! I had so much fun writing Vernon. I had this image of him rocking back and forth on his heels, being all irritating with his dumb gadget. Just like a guy. I figured I could really play that up with him, since it fit so well with his ignorance of magic.

Petunia was a bit trickier, but I found myself relating to her more easily than I expected. The whole story was based on the image of Petunia looking at an old photograph.

The ending is the part I'm least pleased with. It was originally different. I had Harry walking in on Petunia, but I had to tweak it at the last moment to fit with the challenge requirements - I wrote an OotP missing moment intead of HBP!

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Review #27, by MrsMosley The Last Letter

8th August 2009:
Wonderful story. Vernon, especially, has perfect characterization.

Author's Response: Thank you very much. I had fun writing Vernon.

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Review #28, by Kristen_Animagus The Last Letter

31st July 2009:
I loved it, it was perfect. Keep up the awesome work!

Author's Response: I don't think it was perfect myself, but thanks for saying so. I am certainly proud of this story.

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Review #29, by Kayla The Last Letter

29th July 2009:
That was AMAZING!
Brought tears to my eyes!
Marvelous use and stunning talent!

Author's Response: Wow, I'm so flattered! I'm happy to hear my story moved you! Thanks for the review and the exclamation points. :)

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Review #30, by Historyrepeats The Last Letter

28th July 2009:
This is beautiful!
Absolutely beautiful.
Well done!

Author's Response: Many thanks for the beautiful review! I was hoping to convey a small sense of beauty, so thanks for commenting on that.

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Review #31, by Michael Fernandez The Last Letter

25th July 2009:
This story was amazing. It was the first HP fan fiction I have ever read. I had to read it like 3 times!! I hope you have other entries on here.

Author's Response: Hi, Michael! Thank you so, so much for the amazing comments! Your review means a lot to me.

Welcome to HPFF! I'm glad your first reading experience was good. Everyone finds their own preferences, but I highly recommend anything on my favorites pages. In particular, "Just Another Midnight Run" by momotwins is awesome.

Although I think this story is my best so far, I do have another one-shot posted called "Hepzibah's Inheritance," and I wrote a one-shot called "The Butterbeer Brigade" for the HPFF United collab mentioned on the home page. I hope to have another challenge piece up in the next two weeks as well.

Thank you again for your wonderful comment!

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Review #32, by noname The Last Letter

16th July 2009:
That was pretty good. better than some other ones i've read.

Author's Response: Thanks for your input. I know the story isn't perfect, but I'm glad you thought well of it overall.

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Review #33, by SilverLightning The Last Letter

12th July 2009:
WOW! That is so good! It really gives you such an insight into Petunia's mind! Brilliant! Well crafted too.

Author's Response: I am so glad you enjoyed it! Petunia was an interesting character to explore. Thanks for taking the time to review.

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Review #34, by vintageoctober The Last Letter

6th July 2009:
This was a true gem. This story humanized Petunia better than any other fan story I've read. I loved it. Honestly, it's a story I could read over and over again.

Author's Response: This review really blew me away! I feel so flattered. I did want to humanize Petunia, and I enjoyed feeling her out as a character. I don\\\'t see too many stories focusing on the Dursleys as main characters, which is understandable, I suppose. Anyway, thank you very much for your lovely words!

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Review #35, by blithering_humdinger The Last Letter

5th July 2009:
Wow, that was really good!

Author's Response: Thanks so much!

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Review #36, by Jalia The Last Letter

4th July 2009:
very well-written and good interpretation of Petunia! I like the photograph involvement! great job.

Author's Response: Thanks a lot, Jalia. :) The photograph idea was what I built this story around.

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Review #37, by paddiew The Last Letter

22nd June 2009:
wonderful! could have in from the book.

Author's Response: Thanks for reviewing! It was supposed to be a "missing moment," so I'm glad you thought it fit the bill.

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Review #38, by luvjamesnoliver The Last Letter

30th May 2009:
*Sniff* That was a really beatiful story. You really showed Petunia feelings toward Harry and Lily. Petunia really did love her sister, she just let her thoughts on magic maim that love.
You really captured Veron, he does think that as long as he has the best of whatever it is that he doesn't have to worry about magic getting past it.
I really liked this fic, it was a great missing moment. We all know how the wizarding world feels about Harry and his parents but not so much with Petunia.
I'm a total sucker for emotional peices and I think you did a great job of expressing Petuna and Veron's thoughts on the wizarding world.
I really like the last part with the bird. It kind of made me think that Lily was watching her sister and was trying to show her things would be okay. Quick question is the bird supposed to be a phonix?

Awsome fic!


Author's Response: Thank you very much! Family seemed to be very important to Petunia and Vernon, and as I got the impression from Snape's memory that Petunia and Lily were close as children, I believe that Lily's death must have affected Petunia greatly, no less because she had to take in a second child. Since Harry's eyes reminded everyone else of Lily, they had to have reminded Petunia as well. Petunia's feelings toward magic were deeply conflicted, and having Harry around wouldn't have made it any easier for her to come to terms with it all.

Vernon is a comical character from the reader's standpoint, and I had great fun writing his part.

Yes, the bird at the end is supposed to be a phoenix. Specifically, it is supposed to be Dumbledore's Patronus. I wanted to end the story with Petunia feeling reassured and knowing that she isn't alone.

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Review #39, by reader The Last Letter

29th May 2009:
wonderful! this was a joy to read!

Author's Response: Thank you very much!

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Review #40, by momotwins The Last Letter

27th May 2009:
I read this in the queue but of course couldn't review there.

I LOVE IT! I think your writing is excellent. I really enjoyed your take on Petunia and her motivations. Very well done. Everyone is in character, the descriptions are lovely, dialogue is very natural. 10/10

Author's Response: Thank you so much for the wonderful review! It's lovely to receive a review from someone whose writing I very much admire.

Although there are a few rough patches I'm not totally pleased with, overall I do like how this story turned out. I'm happy to hear the comment about the descriptions, especially, as I wasn't sure if I was going overboard or not trying to describe everything I was picturing in my mind. Again, thank you!

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Review #41, by Crystle The Last Letter

27th May 2009:
totaly awsome. A very well written and intertaining short story

Author's Response: Thanks! I'm glad you liked it.

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Review #42, by Harry_0507 The Last Letter

26th May 2009:
that was fun to read about petunia's perspective.. xD haha

Author's Response: Thank you. It was fun to write from Petunia's perspective as well.

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Review #43, by clare The Last Letter

21st May 2009:
wow- liked this
the extra detail just makes it that much more believable
and u got the characters to a tee.
Great work =]

Author's Response: Thank you very much! I was hoping Petunia would be believable, so I'm glad to hear you thought I did a good job.

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Review #44, by RonsGirlFriday The Last Letter

21st May 2009:
I think your characterization of both Petunia and Vernon was perfect! Vernon with the alarm system - absolutely, classically Vernon Dursley.

I loved how you used the photograph here - first of all, the fact that Petunia held onto it for 16 years was touching, and it makes me think she has a soft side to her and she really misses her sister a great deal (I believe she does). And the part with the water blurring Lily's face is very eerie.

I love the ending - it was beautiful, and somewhat unexpected. Great job overall!!

Author's Response: Thank you for your review, and thanks especially for your remark about the characterization. Vernon is an easy mark to hit, if you aren't going into his character too deeply, but Petunia is trickier.

I'm really glad you commented about the photo! Obviously, I had Petunia drop it into the damp sink for a reason. I did want Lily's face and the writing about Harry blurred, but Harry's face to remain untouched.

I'm glad you liked the ending. I had to change it to fit it into the HBP timeline. I don't think it's the story's strong point, but it is touching, in a way.

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Review #45, by Girldetective85 The Last Letter

20th May 2009:
WOW. Loved this story, you really did a wonderful job with Petunia. I enjoy reading people's different takes on this character and somehow you have managed to make her sympathetic. I did always feel sorry for her because of everyone's preferential treatment of Lily and the way Petunia was always left out in the cold. Although this definitely does not excuse her cruelty towards her only nephew, I think the way you've described her makes her mindset easier to understand. She hated Harry but he was her only tie to the sister she never really understood but definitely loved at one point (maybe even aspired to be like?). With the breaking of that tie, she would lose her one remaining connection to Lily and that would be even more painful to Petunia. She's such a complex character, really, even if she started out as the cliche "evil stepmother" type of character at the beginning of the series. You've done a great job here!

Author's Response: Thank you very much! JKR really gave us deeper insight into Petunia in the last three books, and I am convinced that "losing" Lily to magic hit her hard. Just judging by that memory of Snape's, the sisters seemed to be close, and since Harry's eyes reminded everyone else of Lily, I'm sure they reminded Petunia as well. Harry leaving for the last time was probably a bit like losing Lily for the third time for Petunia.

Aside from Vernon insisting on normalcy, I believe that part of the reason the Dursleys worked so hard to "stamp" the magic out of Harry was because Petunia thought by doing that, she might finally be able to stamp out her desire to be part of that world. I'm really glad that to you she seemed sympathetic but not excused, as that was my aim. I actually had a lot of fun writing her. She was easier for me to relate to than I expected. Again, thanks for the lovely review.

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Review #46, by Annachie The Last Letter

18th May 2009:
Great little story. I always thought Petunia should have shown a sensitive side occasionally

Author's Response: Thanks. I do think Petunia felt she'd lost her sister to the Wizarding World, and I wanted to show her in a sympathetic light.

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Review #47, by Joanne K The Last Letter

16th May 2009:
Amazing! This fic hand me pulled in right from the start and a couldn't take my eyes off the page until I had finished it. I can't believe you don't write more as you certainly have a gift for it. Your imagery was fantastic; you really set the scene with your detailed descriptions, including all the little details in the characters looks and actions as they spoke. It really conveyed the characters well. I also thought your characterisation was spot on. In particular I thought you wrote Vernon so accurately it was hard not to think that JKR could have written it herself. Your spelling and grammar were both good from what I could tell (though I expected nothing less as you come across as being quite knowledgeable in these areas in your reviews). There may have been one or two lines that I had to read twice because they seemed not to flow well, such as:

"... and she'd gotten stuck looking after him. "

But that could be just me because I'm not a fan of the word 'gotten'.

I had to smile when I read this line:

"if it doesn't keep that Lord Thing out, at least I'll have enough warning to grab my golf club and give him a good crack over the-"

Was this possibly inspired by a certain scene in 'Golden Amulet'? lol

You really did a superb job with this one-shot and I could easily see it happening in the books.

Author's Response: Thank you for the sweet review! I used to write some when I was younger, but haven't written fiction for many years now. I think I overdid or mishandled the descriptions in some places; some of my sentence structure became repetitive. I'm glad you liked the effect, though. Vernon was such a hoot to write.

I originally had the usual baseball bat instead of a golf club. However, then I got to wondering if baseball is common enough in Britain for a family to own a bat? I think it's more an American (and Japanese) thing. So then what to use, a cricket bat? Are they even called cricket bats or is there a special name? And then, yes, I remembered you using a golf club in your story and thought, problem solved!

Ugh, that "gotten stuck" line. I got so aggravated with that paragraph! I know it's not exactly a highlight, and there are several other sticky places throughout. I will likely edit this at some point, but having a deadline was great for me.

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