190 Reviews Found

Review #51, by Deltaris Act I

29th March 2012:
Wow, this is fantastic.

I love how you've taken characters that we know so well and have put them in a completely different universe. This is why I love AU stories! It's a whole new world and set of actions underlined by something familiar and comforting.

Sirius is fantastic. He must be, what? 13/14, here? I can already see the bits of Sirius that we know - his rebellion against his family and desire to see everything in the world righted.

Cygnus! We don't know much about him in canon, but I think this character would be so much like the man you describe here.

Your dialogue is amazing. It's handled perfectly and adds so much to the story. Every word you use just adds to the setting and actions.


Author's Response: Thank you! This is my baby and definitely a story I'm proud of. AU is fantastic, I must agree! There is so much you can do.

Sirius is quite young, and part of me wishes I had made him a bit older, but there will be a time lapse later in the story and he needs a few years to come into his own. I figured I'd start with how old they were when they first went to Hogwarts and go from there.

Cygnus is such a fantastic character to write. I really love him a lot and it's great that he's essentially non-existent in canon because I get to play with him as much as I want and no one can tell me he isn't in-character.

Thanks! Finding a balance between dialogue and description is hard and it's especially difficult to maintain a sort of proper tone to everything being that they're royalty and all that, so I'm glad that you loved it so much.

Thanks for such a sweet review. :)

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Review #52, by WeepingWillows Act V

28th March 2012:
Even though there was not a lot of Sirius in this chapter I enjoyed this! I just love the way you write Regulus. I respected him so much as a character after I read the DH :) And a line that I really enjoyed in this chapter was this: “I’m just a boy,” Regulus whispered. “I don’t have the strength to carry a kingdom.”

AND I just noticed too that for some reason my review on your last chapter was cut off but I meant to say at the end "but it all worked out" :) Your story is great so far and I'm adding it to my favorites so that I can continue reading it and seeing what else this story has in stored! My rating is a 10/10 :D Again awesome job.

Author's Response: The chapters alternate between Sirius and Cygnus so no Sirius in this chapter, sorry. I'm glad you enjoyed it despite the lack of Sirius though! Regulus is definitely one of my favorite characters to write. He's very naive and innocent, and it will be very sad to watch him fall prey to his uncle's malicious intentions.

I'm really glad you're enjoying this so far and thank you for adding it to your favorites. Hopefully I can update soon!

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Review #53, by WeepingWillows Act IV

27th March 2012:
Yay! James, Remus and Peter. I don't particularly like Peter anyways but I loved how Remus snapped at him and reminded him how they took him in. That was a good scene in this act. I almost got the vibe that Peter was insecure about Sirius joining him, James and Remus which I found interesting. James at first made me angry when he stole Sirius' socks but it all

Author's Response: Peter isn't meant to be a bad guy - he's just a bit jealous and used to a routine. Or as much of a routine as they can muster in their situation. Adding another boy, another mouth to feed can be stressful. But I did like putting him in his place. James is an interesting character, but he'll warm up to Sirius, don't worry. He's just trying to save his own skin, that's all. Thanks for the review!

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Review #54, by WeepingWillows Act III

27th March 2012:
A tiny part of me was disappointed that Sirius was not at all in this chapter. But I loved this chapter nonetheless. You write Regulus wonderfully too! This story is very interesting to me and I am loving the flow of the plot and how you intertwine the Marauder's real-life events with this story as well. I'm interested to see where the next chapter takes me!

Author's Response: As I said in response to your review in Act V, the chapters alternate between Cygnus and Sirius telling the story. Don't be disappointed!

I'm glad you're enjoying this so far, and thank you for leaving me reviews, they mean a lot to me.

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Review #55, by WeepingWillows Act II

27th March 2012:
I just adore your writing style and this story! Its so incredibly well-written and makes me rather envious. You're doing such a good job. The plot flow is perfect and I just love all the events that are currently unfolding. Incredibly interesting to me. I loved how you introduced James to the story too. :)

For a while my eyes were just glued to the screen and I just found myself at the edge of my seat wanting to know what will happen next so on to the next act! :) Great work so far.

Author's Response: Thank you! This is probably one of my more polished stories and it's a lot more formal in terms of a stylistic standpoint, but it's been a lot of fun to write.

James was a great addition, and I'm excited to write more Marauder antics in the future.

I'm really happy you're so interested in this story of mine. It's my baby and it means a lot to me that so many people are enjoying it. Thank you!

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Review #56, by WeepingWillows Act I

27th March 2012:
“I was just wondering why we don’t allow goblins to have wands. If goblins were allowed wands, I think they wouldn’t hate wizards as much and we wouldn’t have so many uprisings.”

I Loved Sirius' innocence in this. :) It was such a joy to read. Most writers tend to have Sirius be such a dark character and sometimes even when they write him as a child, they forget that even though his childhood was rather dark (darker then most) that he was still a child at heart. I love the way and the style that you write and I just love your Sirius.

It's interesting the way that Narcissa describe the wizarding world as a kingdom and that as witches and wizards they ruled it and I liked seeing you have Sirius make statements such as: "This will change when I'm king." and I liked how you reffered to the kingdom again when Sirius' father told him that princes don't drag their feet.

This is probably one of my favorite lines in this chapter: “You must live your life first, my dear boy. There is no happiness if you have not felt sadness, no triumph if you have never failed. You are still young – you have decades at your fingertips. Don’t wish for your life to be over; it has barely even begun.” Such a powerful line to me!

Author's Response: Yes! Sirius is so naive and that hurts him, at least in the beginning. He'll get stronger, though, don't worry. ;)

Yes, Sirius is a dark character in my mind, but you're right - he's still a child here and while he's certainly gone through a lot of tragedy in his short life, he is still a child.

In this story, the wizarding world IS a kingdom. The Blacks are real royalty. It's just how I've created this AU.

I love that line you picked out too. Thank you for your review. :)

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Review #57, by SunshineDaisies Act I

26th March 2012:
What an interesting beginning!

I think your plot is really intriguing. It's plausible given the circumstances, and you've really given it a firm foundation with this chapter! Great work.

The pacing is really great too. It starts off a little slow, but it's not without a point. You can't just jump right into murdering the kind without establishing some things first. So while it was a little slow, it wasn't at all boring. It's a very good pace, really.

Your characters are kind of amazing. We're one chapter in, and Sirius is already spot on. Cygnus is really well developed too. I feel as though I know exactly what their personalities are. Some people write entire stories and never do that, and here you've done it in one chapter. I applaud you.

Fantastic work. I'm very interested to see the rest of this!

Author's Response: I'm glad you find it interesting and the plot is intriguing. I definitely want to catch the reader's attention and make them want to continue reading.

Haha, yeah, you definitely can't just jump right into the murdering bit. Part of me really wishes I paced myself a bit more but the murder, while a catalyst, isn't a huge part of the plot.

I'm also really pleased to find that you are enjoying my characterization of these canon characters. Sirius and Cygnus are great to write so I'm glad I picked the two of them to alternate.

Thank you so much for your review. :)

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Review #58, by Arithmancy_Wiz Act IV

25th March 2012:
It's amazing how easy it was to slip back into this story even though it's been a few months since I last reviewed. I think it's easy for one story to blend into the next sometimes but not with this one. Your original take on a Marauders story continues to shine.

I know I mentioned before how Sirius was acting mature for his age thanks to the pressures placed on him as heir, but it was really nice to see in this chapter him act like the scared little boy he really is. Once faced with children his own age, and without the supervision of adults always around to correct him, we really got to see the "young" Sirius.

In fact, you did a great job with all the boys. I was surprised at first by how callous James was, but it quickly began to make sense. He's clearly got a tough life and can't let himself be fooled or too easily convinced to share what meager possessions he has. I did like how he sent Remus to fetch Sirius in the end. I got the impression that was really his plan all along. He was just making sure Sirius knew his "place" within their little gang.

The characterization of Peter was also great. One line really stood out to me: Peter was wrapped up in a blanket in a corner, refusing to look at Sirius. It's almost a throwaway but somehow it was enough to convey Peter's unwillingness to view Sirius as a person in need. Almost as if he was thinking, if I don't see him as a person then it will be all the easier to get rid of him or use him for ransom.

I also really liked the small addition of the boys using descriptors as names. Sirius using Crooked-Teeth, James using Rich Boy. It felt authentic, especially given their ages.

I know I also mentioned the frequent switching of scenes, with some being a bit short. However, in this chapter, I thought the flow was the best yet. I think it worked so well here for two reasons. One, the scenes with the boys were almost like one long scene, so it felt like we were coming back to something familiar. Two, HAD it been one long scene, I think it might have dragged a bit. The brief interludes of scenes II and IV were the prefect way to divide up the larger narrative.

I can only think of one tiny critique. The line: The walk back towards the boys' cabin took longer than usual, but the more Sirius walked, the less painful his feet began to feel. Up until that point in the chapter, we've been mostly in Sirius' POV. However, there is no way he could have known how long it usually took to get to the cabin as he had never been there. Maybe a simple rephrase like: The walk back towards the boys' cabin probably took longer than usual thanks to Sirius' weakened state, but the more he walked, the less painful his feet began to feel.

Overall, another great job. I'm glad we were selected as review partners this time around :)

Author's Response: I am so sorry for how long it has taken me to respond. It really pleased me to hear you say how easily it was to pick this story back up. That means a lot to me and it tells me that my story is unique enough to stand out.

Sirius is definitely a lot more mature than an average eleven year old (all of the boys are because of the situations they've been forced into), but he's still going to have episodes where we see that vulnerability and childishness that reminds us of how young he is.

Yes, James is mean here but at least you recognize the reasoning behind it. I wouldn't make him so cold-hearted just for the fun of it. He's definitely the ringleader and he knows how to run a tight ship, so he lets Sirius sweat it out a bit, but he wasn't going to just leave him to die.

Peter is a complex character. He'll show Sirius some kindnesses but he's also still hesitant about letting another boy into their little group. It's been the three of them for a couple of years and they've got things down. It's going to change their group dynamic and he's frightened about that. Peter is definitely someone who needs structure in his life and this will toss him a bit.

I've definitely gotten better about the switching scenes, I think. The point was to make scenes I, III, and V like one long scene with brief interludes and some chapters, it works better than others. I hope if you continue to read you will find the transitions more to your liking.

I fixed that line you mentioned. I can see where you were coming from and I guess I didn't even think about it that way, so thank you for picking up on that. And thank you for your lovely review! :)

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Review #59, by Aphoride Act II

20th March 2012:
Oh no! Even though I knew it was coming - Orion's actually dead! Oh my gosh - I kept hoping through the beginning that somehow he would survive, even if just for a moment, that Madam Pomfrey would be able to do something... poor, poor Sirius. And poor Regulus. He seemed to take it almost worse.

Your characterisation is so brilliant. All the canon characters - Moody, Pomfrey, Dumbledore, even Kreacher - are so easily recognisable as themselves, even though this is AU. I can also see them in the positions you gave them in the court - it makes perfect sense. I love how Dumbledore is still all Dumbledore-y and wise, it's brilliant! Hopefully we'll see a bit more of that later!

Cygnus is an awesome villain, by the way. He's just so power-hungry and such a good actor and so... villainous :D Honestly, I just love him. If I didn't adore Sirius and Regulus quite so much (because, really, they are just too adorable for words, especially Reggie) I'd want him to succeed in his plot.

Ah! James! And Remus and Peter, yes? No? I'm guessing, but I hope it's them...

Gosh, I'm so excited to read more of this! It's so absolutely enthralling! This is definitely going on my reading list.

Keep going - it's so good!
Aph xx

Author's Response: Yeah, it's sad, isn't it? It had to happen, though, and I hate to say it but there will be more deaths in this fic. :(

Regulus is definitely affected by his father's death and we will see that a lot in future chapters, the poor kid.

While this is an AU, I wanted to be able to incorporate canon characters that everyone would recognize. I will change some details about their characters to fit into my universe, but for the most part, they fit roles that would be suitable if this were canon. We will definitely see more of Dumbledore, don't you worry!

I love Cygnus. He is definitely power hungry but he has grown up with these ideals and been taught from a very young age what to expect in terms of Purebloods, etc. so he's only doing what he thinks is right. To him, what he's doing isn't wrong, it's maintaining the purity of their line and of magic.

Yay, Marauders. They will play a very large part in this story, for sure.

I'm so glad you're enjoying this, and thank you for your review. :)

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Review #60, by Fooenti Act I

19th March 2012:
First of all, I just wanted to say that I'm fascinated with this story. Sirius has always been my favourite character and this approach is really cool.

The story has a nice flow; you somehow managed to use some well-known characters in a totally different scenario and still make them be as they are pictured to be in the books, which is awesome.

I really enjoyed reading this, thank you so much! (Now onto the next chapter!)

Author's Response: Thanks! I love Sirius too so this was a fun little project to bring something new to my catalogue of Sirius-centric stories.

There will be more canon characters making their appearance in future chapters, but I'm glad they work for you in this scenario.

I'm so happy that you enjoyed it, and thanks for the lovely review!

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Review #61, by charlottetrips Act V

19th March 2012:
Cygnus is getting pretty paranoid here. Of course a King would need someone to help him dress. Don’t ask me how I know that because it’s in ALL the movies and it seems that kings can’t do the littlest things by themselves :P

Bella husband-hunting at her uncle’s funeral? So Bella, so heartless.

I love all these helpful attendants and servants. Though I know that the story is a slightly heavy one with all this intrigue and such, seeing how Kreacher, Dumbledore, Mrs. Weasley and the lot deal with Sirius and Regulus as well as how they regard each other is nice. It adds some heart to the story.

From the bit in the last chapter where Dumbledore mentioned Regulus having been excluded from lessons that Sirius had as the heir, and Cygnus’ own thoughts during the funeral, I can see that he’s been planning this for years. Though I’m sure you’ve mentioned it before, it’s these little tidbits that I like because then I, as the reader, am forced to work my mind and keep track of everything.

Heh, Pollux should be king. He’s far more careful than Cygnus.

Oho! Look at that! You’ve made Cygnus the Dark Lord, equipped with Death Eaters and tattoos on their arms! I read that and I was like “Whoa! Brilliant!”

Yes this was a filler but to me it had a lot of data on Cygnus and Regulus which helped build them more as characters.

And I'm now caught up! Boo-yah!


Author's Response: Yay, you're caught up!

Oh, come on, don't tell me if you weren't in Cygnus's shoes...having just killed your brother for his place on the throne...that you wouldn't be the least bit paranoid? Of course king's have someone helping the dress, but Cygnus is not used to such luxuries.

Hah, Bella is heartless, isn't she? She just wants to find a proper Pureblood to marry, that's all, and what other perfect way to do so when all the Purebloods are around? Who cares the reason for their arrival? :P

I don't want this story to be all darkness and mystery, especially with the Marauders part of the story, things will be a bit more light-hearted.

This has definitely been in the plans for years, and Cygnus tried very carefully to plan as much as he could. Of course, some things were just out of his control but he's certainly set Regulus up to be nothing more than his puppet.

Yes, well, I'm sure Pollux would love to be king...if only he wasn't just a darn portrait! Haha, yes! Cygnus is the equivalent of Voldemort in this story. I'm glad you picked up on that...though I suppose I didn't make it very subtle either.

I thought this chapter was definitely important for Cygnus, and Regulus too, so I'm glad you weren't too put off by the boring parts.

Thanks for all your lovely reviews. I'm so happy you're enjoying this story. :)

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Review #62, by charlottetrips Act IV

19th March 2012:
Look at the boys! They’re making friends! :) How cute is that? And it suddenly struck me that we’re reading about eleven year olds and already they’re having to be adults. How sad is that? Being royal seems to suck quite a lot at times.

OK, so as I’m reading on, I can see that James is more interested in survival and taking care of the people he knows than making friends (ish). He’s still pretty street smart though and I like the idea of James getting Sirius to loosen up when it seems to me, that in the books it was the other way around. And of course it would be Remus who took pity on the poor boy and let him loose from his bounds. You’ve got a bit of the old Marauders we know, except with Shakespearan attached to them.

Trust Dumbledore to never take something at face value. I also like that you gave him an oval office.

Just like I admire you in “Portraits of Courage” so do I admire you here for you ability to handle varying points of view within the same frame of reference. Switching between all the different viewpoints can be messy with some authors but with you, it’s seamless. It also greatly livens it up for me (not that it NEEDS livening up, just that it simply does do so) and also makes my fear of reading something based on Shakespeare not so awful :P

How unusual on Phineas. Is that true? He had an older brother named Sirius whom he stole the throne from? I mean, in terms of “true”, is that sort of lineage/relation somewhere in canon?

LOL. Sirius “roughing it” and being dainty! :)

A good chapter. The start of lifelong friendships.


Author's Response: Haha, b'aww, they're just so cute, aren't they? It is sad that they have to look after and provide for themselves. They're just boys, after all. Yeah, being royal can suck sometimes. You're so sheltered.

Yeah, James is definitely very centered on making sure they stay alive. He's their leader of sorts, and so he feels responsible for them. He'll certainly have a huge impact on Sirius as he grows up. Haha, Remus is so sweet, isn't he? He would be the one to save Sirius. I tried to stay a little true to their canon-selves, of course, changing things up a bit due to their circumstances and whatnot.

Dumbledore is a smart cookie, isn't he? I actually didn't even intentially make his office oval, it just seemed fitting so that's kind of funny.

Gah, thank you so much. One thing I'm never sure about is if the switching POVs works well or not. It seems to be hit or miss with certain readers. I really enjoy writing from the various POVs and it helps keep things interesting so I'm glad you like it. Haha, the story isn't even all that Shakespearean. Nothing to be frightened about. :P

Yes, I did do some research on the Black family. Sirius died at a young age, based on the Black family tree, so I took it from there with the whole taking the throne and whatnot.

Haha, Sirius will definitely be "roughing it" for a while, and it's going to be a lot of fun to write about his adjustments to forest-dwelling. That's what I'm writing about right now actually!

Yes, lifelong friendships. I'm excited to continue to write about their bond and how they each grow up in this situation they've been dealt with.

Thanks for the sweet review. :)

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Review #63, by charlottetrips Act III

18th March 2012:
Very nice. I like that you've taken the time to show us what happened in the castle before and after Sirius was taken. Again, I'd just like to comment on the fact that I really do appreciate that you've made Sirius have family and people within his family home that care for him. This is a significant difference (aside from the Marauders and other Order of the Phoenix members) from the books.

“Until you come of age, my dear nephew, I shall act as king in your father’s stead.” - Cygnus is arrogant and I will enjoy seeing him fall (if that is the fate he has ahead of him). He's a villain whose driven by power and so far you've made him out to be clever but unfortunately a bit pompous and careless.

Kreacher, surprisingly, is someone that I'm liking a lot. His care for the two boys and his loyalty to the dead king are admirable. I'm actually going to enjoy seeing further scenes with him.

The emotion that you laid out in the story is believable and really draws me in. Regulus' upset over his brother's disappearance, Kreacher's concern, it's all very well written!


Author's Response: I thought it was important to see how Sirius's disappearance affected other characters and not just him. I can't imagine Sirius growing up to be the king he needs to be if he grew up in a home bereft of love and care; it's definitely necessary for him to grow and mature.

Cygnus is such an arrogant snot, isn't he? I can't tell you if he'll fall or not, but it's always fun to imagine his demise, isn't it? He's definitely very two-faced, but you're right - he can be rather careless, and that will come back to bite him in the butt.

I'm so happy you like Kreacher! He's a favorite of mine to write, and I want people to connect with him and really feel for him because he's so torn between doing what is expected of him and what he wants to do.

Thank you so much for your lovely reviews. It means a lot to me!

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Review #64, by SexyDoorFrames Act II

18th March 2012:
Once again, you're writing was amazing. It was simply stunning. This story is beautiful and so interesting. It's interesting to see familiar names in different circumstances. And we have the introduction of James, I can't wait to see what you've done with him and the other Marauders. I adore your take on Sirius, so I'm really excited! Thanks for another wonderful read, I really enjoyed this!

- SexyDoorFrames

Author's Response: Ah, thank you so much for the compliments! You're making me blush. I'm always worried about what people will think about me bringing the canon characters into this story, if they'll like the roles I've placed them in, so I'm happy to see that you like it.

The next chapter is the introduction of the rest of the Marauders so hopefully you can get a chance to read it soon. Sirius is great, and I'm really excited to write him in this situation.

Thanks for another wonderful review! :)

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Review #65, by charlottetrips Act II

18th March 2012:
Oh yay! It's a Marauders story! I mean "Duh, Char!" but look, I thought we were just going to be living Hamlet and leave Sirius struggling by himself. I'm so glad to see the boys.

It's actually nice to see that Sirius and the rest of the kingdom are mourning the king's passing. Sirius often doesn't have family he cares for or who cares for him so to see him surrounded by affection and care is refreshing, even though the tale is getting dark. I really love how you are incorporating all the characters of the books into the story and making them human-like if they aren't human. It's like how in Beauty and the Beast the furniture turned human!

The moment when Sirius laid his hand on his father's was so sad. I was just imagining a little boy doing that.

I liked the bit of humor you put in there with the two crooks being a little dumb on kidnapping Sirius (lighting the room up). The ending was also fun to read as it brought James and the other boys into the picture!


Author's Response: lol, no struggling alone. Sirius needs the Marauders to you know, grow up into a strong, good king and all.

I wanted to give the boys a nice family in this AU so that it would affect them more when they deal with the loss of their father and their separation.

Aw, yeah, Orion's death scene was really sad with Sirius. Poor kid. He's like a grown up in a little kid's body.

It's going to be interesting the more I write because there will be a definite distinction between Cygnus and Sirius's POV where Cygnus's chapters will keep getting darker and Sirius's will be a bit more lighthearted. Haha, those crooks really are dumb, aren't they? Good for Sirius, though.

I'm glad you liked it. Thanks for reviewing!

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Review #66, by angie123 Act II

16th March 2012:
This is quite beautiful. I thought you made Cygnus out to be a little obvious. You should talk about Cygnus sometime and describe him as a person. I really love how you put Hogwarts as a kingdom and the staff as the characters. I also liked that you made Orion loving instead of his uncle. In the HP Lexicon it said that one of Sirius's uncle was disowned for going along with Sirius. I forgot the name, though. If I were to rate this, I'd give this a 10/10

Author's Response: Thank you for your review. Sirius's uncle Alphard was disowned but he won't really play a part in this story.

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Review #67, by angie123 Act I

16th March 2012:
Wow. This was quite beautiful.

I am rather sorry it took me this long to review. I was at work for a month and now I settled things. So again, my apologies.

I have to say, your story is very beautiful. Although it is a bit Shakespearean, I hope that you don't follow the script of his novels but twist it into something of your own. You have creativity, but you might want to not get too cliche with the storyline. You have amazing grammar and spelling skills. This is of course the first chapter, so the more I read, the more I'd like to see more of your own plot.

I'd give this a 10/10

Author's Response: Hey, don't worry about it. I totally understand about how life gets in the way of things.

As I said in my author's note, this story will definitely be my own. I just borrowed some plot ideas from Hamlet.

If you could perhaps PM me to discuss what sort of cliche things I should avoid, that would be nice. I already have a basic idea of how this story is going, but nothing is set in stone so if you have any suggestions, I'd love to hear them.

My betas are to thank for my grammar and spelling, but thank you. You will definitely see more of my own plot, as I said, so I hope you find the following chapters to be more to your liking.

Thanks for the review!

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Review #68, by AC_rules Act V

16th March 2012:
So I've missed reading this story. I must make a note not to get behind and rely on the review battels to keep myself up to date. This was another chapter that flowed flawlessly and felt as, well, beautiful as ever.
Your characterisation remained wonderful and it had that same solem /real/ feel to it that your stories often have. I really loved all of Regulus's emotions.

Father Dodge's speech felt like it had been peeled from real life (do I use the word peel a lot in my reivews to you? I feel like this has happened before).

I missed Sirius and the Marauders, but i persume that they'll be back soon so I'll probably forgive for the sake of begging for a new update soon, please? I'll promise not to neglect reading and reviewing preoperly.

Lovely chapter, basically :)


Author's Response: Helen! I've missed your reviews. Don't worry about being behind, sometimes review battles are the best ways to catch up. ;)

Aw, thanks. I always try to stop and think about how I'd feel in certain situations and draw off of them in my writing, so I try to make things as real as possible. I'm glad it comes across well.

I don't know if you use the word 'peel' a lot, but I won't hold it against you! Writing that speech took a lot of time and effort despite how short it was. I just wasn't sure what should be said!

Sirius and the Marauders will be the next chapter, don't you fret! I should hopefully get working on that sometime this week. :)

Thanks for reading and reviewing! I'll try to get to some more of your fics this break too.

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Review #69, by Aderyn Act V

11th March 2012:
Hi again.

This chapter is, maybe, as you said, a bit of a filler, but there were still details that I appreciated. Having Elphias Doge as a priest was a nice touch. And the mention of the other Black sisters was interesting as well. I have to wonder what Bellatrix might be like.

There was one place in this that seemed a bit repetitive: "Cygnus knew that once he was king, he would have many suitors seeking the youngest Black daughter’s hand in marriage. When she was of age, he was certain he would have no trouble finding her a suitable husband, a respectable pureblood that played well into his plans for the future of their kingdom. "

It feels a bit like you're saying the same thing twice. If you want the distinction between her having many suitors and her having a respectable husband, then maybe you could just combine the sentences.

The funeral and coronation scenes seemed to work well. I loved Dumbledore's speech. It seemed rebellious enough to make Cygnus angry, but not enough for him to act right away. Of course Dumbledore would remind Cygnus not to change things too much.

And the last line of this chapter/act really surprised me. I definitely felt like you were alluding to dark marks. Interesting.interesting. :D So is Cygnus some sort of surrogate Voldemort, or am I reading too much into this?

So, now I've reached the last posted chapter. I've really enjoyed this story so far. It's not your typical fan fiction story, or a normal AU one--it's far better than that. You have a believable tone to the story that fits the setting. Beyond that, the characters are a nice blend of familiar and different. And the details you include are wonderful. I'm so glad I decided to finally read this story. I've not been disappointed in the least. Wonderful, brilliant job and I can't wait to read more.

Author's Response: Thank you for going through and reviewing all the chapters, you're too kind. :)

I wasn't sure how much this moved the plot along, but there were definite details that were important to the overall plot so maybe it wasn't quite filler.

Bella won't be as mad as she is in canon, but she's not all there either. You'll read a bit more of them in the next chapter which should be posted sometime soon.

Thanks for pointing that out. I'll reread it and see if I can figure out a way to reword it to make it less repetitive.

Dumbledore is a bit rebellious, is he not? He will play some important parts in this story but he knows well enough to kind of stay on the edge of things lest Cygnus take away his access to important things.

Oh, dark marks...maybe. :D I will say you are not reading too much into it.

I'm really pleased to hear your thoughts on this fic. You always have such positive things to say but you always have suggestions on ways for me to improve, which is what I strive to do with each chapter. Thank you so much for tackling all these chapters and leaving reviews for each one, it means a lot to me. :)

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Review #70, by Aderyn Act IV

11th March 2012:

It's great to see the Marauders, or at least your version of them. They have almost a Robin-Hood-esque feel to them: a band of boys, who steal, and live in the woods but aren't cruel. James definitely has the same arrogance that James Potter does, and is certainly the leader of the group.

I like the reference to Sirius's socks. The portraits said it back in Act III and now James steals the same socks that were mentioned. I know that seems like a small thing, but that you took such a tiny detail and made it more important here shows wonderful planning.

I like the dynamic between the marauders, it seems pretty faithful to the book, minus, for the time being, Sirius. Remus is the more conscientious one. Peter is a bit mousy, and lazy. James, I've mentioned before.

It'll be interesting to see how Sirius changes, as he learns to be less of a prince.

And though it was brief, I loved the scene with Dumbledore in his office. You described the room much as it was in the books. And I can certainly picture Dumbledore sitting, skimming through huge books for answers.

You kept a consistently first rate story here, even as you're getting into 'middle chapter' territory that can cause stagnation for other writers. Great job! And there's just one more chapter for me to look at.

Author's Response: Heh, yes, the Marauders are sort of a mishmash of Robin Hood, the Lost Boys, etc. I should think. James is cocky, yes, but he has his reasons for acting the way he does.

Sirius loves his socks - they were a present from Reg!- and he is so very sad that James has stolen them.

Sirius will definitely change growing up with the boys, but I don't know if I would necessarily say he'll become less of a prince. He will certainly do things he would never have done if he remained in the castle but I think all his actions from this point onward will only help to build him into a better prince than he was before.

Dumbledore is a clever man, with his nose stuck in a book, and he will certainly be frustrated frequently because he knows something is amiss but he cannot yet find a reason behind it.

Thank you for your lovely compliments on my story. You are far too kind. :)

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Review #71, by Aderyn Act III

11th March 2012:
Again, great job.

There's a certain atmosphere to this story that I really like. It's a mixture of formality, and of scheming that I feel like fits the Black family of this story and of canon. You picked the perfect set of characters to transpose the action onto.

I love your use of portraits in this chapter. Often, they are forgotten in other fanfiction stories, but you manage to use them in a way that facilitates the action of the story. Not only can they be potential problems, as witnesses to certain events, but the also provide a way for Cygnus to speak his thoughts aloud, without monologing. I mean, it's one thing to promise your father you'll be the next king, it's another to have him talk back and hear you.

I also like the development of Kreacher in this chapter. Before, I called him servile, but now he has some doubts that a completely loyal and oblivious person would not. I think that him doubting Cygnus's use of force makes perfect sense and shows his loyalty to Orion. The line where he wonders if he could take the extra sleeping potion really shows his humanity as well. Wonderful job taking the character and really giving it life.

Once more, I don't have much else to say to you but praise! This story just keeps adding in new little references to Hamlet, or Harry Potter that make me smile.

Author's Response: The Black family was definitely the only one I had in mind when I first started thinking up this plot. I think they fit perfectly.

The portraits! I love them. They'll play important roles later on, but they definitely added to the action, as you said. And yes, Cygnus's father as a portrait is definitely a way to communicate a lot of his reasons behind this scheme.

Kreacher is loyal, but I think he finds his loyalties lie more with Regulus than Cygnus. He still does what Cygnus asks of him but a lot of it is out of a deeper obligation to the young prince and to ensure his place in the court so he can watch over Reg. It's hard on him, though, and he will certainly age a lot quicker now that all of this has happened.

Thank you for your praise and your kind compliments. I'm a very happy author. :)

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Review #72, by Aderyn Act II

11th March 2012:
Hi again!

This chapter/act kept up the momentum created in the first one. I felt horribly sorry for Regulus and Sirius, especially since they're just little kids.

Having Madam Pomfrey as a healer/nurse, Moody as head of security and Winky was the cook was genius. It just so fun to see those familiar names in roles that fit their personalities, but are different than in canon. Kreacher, especially is a great transposition. He's extremely servile, which fits perfectly, since Kreacher of the books practically worshiped the Black family.

And Cygnus's reaction to the news of the king's death wasn't forced at all. Haha. He's all "Oh the king is dead? Darn. Now, what color would be best for my coronation robes." What a baddie.

Ooh and I can't wait to read more about the boys. Who are the marauders? Yes?

Anyways, another great chapter, and I'm off to read more. :D

Author's Response: Hi!

A lot of what I write...I'm trying to get the readers to sympathize with Regulus and Sirius, to feel connected to them. It allows for a greater emotional impact that way, I think.

Adding canon characters was fun and I loved putting them in careers that suited their canon selves too. Plus it's easier than creating a whole slew of my own cast of characters.

Haha, Cygnus...he's definitely got various roles to play. Whether he plays them well...time will tell. ;)

Marauders, yes! :)

I'm glad you liked it. Thanks for reading and reviewing!

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Review #73, by Aderyn Act I

11th March 2012:
Hello :)

I've heard people talking about this story for a while, and finally had some free time, so I decided that I'd read it. And after all the lovely reviews you've left on Vital, I figured it was the least I could do to return the favor.

First, the premise of this story is awesome. I normally don't read AU stories, because they involve Voldemort's long-lost-daughter who is also Harry's twin, or some such nonsense, but as soon as I saw that this had some references to Hamlet, I was hooked.

I really like the way you mapped characters from the HP books onto either Hamlet characters or ones that fit your story. I love Mrs. Weasley as a nurse. And Kretcher and Dumbledore as advisers are genius.

You managed to handle the language very well. You made the story readable, while still retaining an old-fashioned hint in the tone of the story. That formality really gives some credibility to the setting.

And of course, Cygnus is a great villain. He's already plotting against the king and Sirius. And his comment about only wanting to make Orion happy was chilling.

So overall, wonderful job. I can't wait to read more. :D

Author's Response: Hey there! I'm glad you decided to check my little story out.

Haha, Voldemort's long-lost daughter stories are just...no. I will never write anything of that sort. Thanks for taking a chance on this AU.

It was just lucky that these canon characters worked with the roles that I wanted them in. I don't want to say that I'm lazy, but at least I don't have to come up with a lot of OC's. ;)

It's sometimes difficult to remember that I need to keep the narrative and dialogue somewhat old-fashioned, though I do take some liberties when it comes to the Marauders.

Cygnus is such a fun villain to write. I love when people pick up on that comment because it reveals so much about his plans.

Thanks so much for reading and reviewing. :)

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Review #74, by Remus Act V

7th March 2012:
Hey! So...I should've reviewed your story last...but I needed to know what happened! I really have absolutely nothing to criticize. Your characters are perfect and so far your plot is weaving slowly and surely. You definitely managed to get the right balance between narration and dialogue which can sometimes be hard to do. Be careful, thought, to not have many filler chapters because they might tend to bore the readers.

Anyway, since I have nothing to say but only good things...this will be a VERY short review. Keep up the great work you're doing. When you update, and I'm open, don't hesitate to request a review! :D


Author's Response: Haha, I am totally okay with you skipping to my story. ;) Well, having nothing to criticize is a good thing, I think! The plot is a bit slow, but hopefully it's not too off-putting. I'm trying. :)

Finding a balance between dialogue and narrative is very difficult, and sometimes I struggle with that, so I'm happy that it seems to be working out okay for you.

From what I've gathered from other reviewers, they didn't seem to think this was too much of a filler, so I'm not that concerned about it anymore, but I'll try to make sure I limit the number of them.

Thanks so much for taking the time to read and review. I appreciate it! :)

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Review #75, by Violet Gryfindor Act V

7th March 2012:
When I imagine how this chapter would "look" in film-form, I imagine this strange contrast between the funeral, decorated in blacks and greens, and the coronation, so soon afterwards, all awash in whites and golds. Yet in terms of soundtrack, it would be reversed to suit Cygnus instead with the ending containing this terribly menacing music meant to fill one with dread. Now he is king. No one has suspected any foul play (at least from his point of view - if they have, they're too smart or scared to be open about it). His position is secure, and it's frustrating that he was able to attain the kingship without any complaint. Part of this frustration comes from seeing most of the story from his point of view, so the reader is "in" on the secret of his crime, but we're powerless to help - we just have to watch the action and hope for the best. *shakes fist*

Now I don't think this chapter is filler. It's wholly necessary to show the funeral and the coronation so that we know that it actually happened - Sirius would have no way of knowing about these things, not from his isolated position - and those snapshots of Regulus contributed wonderfully to the development of his character. And there's also the benefit of having more fun with Cygnus. I really liked when he interacts with his father's portrait because of the way it complicates his position as villain. Even Cygnus is not in control - there are other things at work, including history and the bloodline. But I think that Cygnus will be disappointed in Regulus, who may be a puppet now because of his age and willing-to-please attitude, but how different could he be from both his father and brother? Or will he be corrupted by his uncle to become a monster?

I'm sorry that this isn't very coherent, as it's late, and I read over this chapter in parts rather than straight through. There was one small critique that I wanted to make regarding the transition between Cygnus going to sleep and waking up - it seemed too rough, as though there either needed to be a break in the scene or more description or something. It seemed like you were including too much detail and following Cygnus's movements too closely. Perhaps I missed something (as I can see his use of the sleeping potion becoming a thing that can be used against him in the future), but it might be a good idea to check that part over to see how you can smooth it out.

Otherwise, this is another great addition to the story, pushing forward both plot and character development so that I'm still stuck wondering what's going to happen next and how you'll work through all that you have here - the characters, the canon, the alternate universe, the timeline. It's a very complicated story you've put together, but it's also a beautiful story to read. That last line... *swoons* It's so richly evocative and has just the right rhythm to it. Amazing! ^_^

Author's Response: Hi, so I suck. There's no other word to describe it. I am so sorry for the obnoxious delay in responding to one of your fabulous reviews.

I love that you see this fic as a movie. I've sort of set it up that way, or at least a play, so I love that a lot of readers can picture it as such. There is definitely a nice contrast between the funeral and the coronation, as it's meant to be. I love that you're imagining a soundtrack, though. That's all kinds of awesome. I think the thing with Cygnus and no one suspecting the king's death as foul play is that it's a combination of not-knowing and people being both scared and smart to keep shut about it. There's a lot at stake and the wrong words could mean something terrible for any one of the characters here. Part of writing the fic from his POV is that I wanted readers to know what he was doing and not being able to do anything. I love reading fics where I'm frustrated with characters - it means I'm emotionally engaged, and that's sort of what I hoped for with this fic.

A lot of people have said it wasn't filler and now that I've reread it, I tend to agree. At first, it just felt useless, like I wasn't moving the plot along any. But the funeral and the coronation were both important events that needed to be written and yes, Regulus's POV needed to be written. The poor child. I really want readers to feel for Regulus and connect with him so it's really important for me to have that connection written.

Yes, Cygnus is not exactly the man in charge. He thinks he is and he in no uncertain terms a good guy being influenced by his father, but his father's opinions do mean a lot to him and he wants to please him and bring honor back to the family name. The use of portraits is really great, as another reviewer pointed out, because we get to hear more of Cygnus's scheme through dialogue and not monologue. Regulus will be Cygnus's puppet now that he's young and naive, but when he's older...well, only time will tell how he turns out.

I don't mind incoherent reviews. The fact that you love this story enough to come back for every chapter (for you to come back and review everything I've written), it means a lot to me. You're an author admired by many (including me) and your dedication to my writing is remarkable.

I did reread that part when you originally pointed it out but haven't made any changes. I can see where it seems jarring. I may add more description because there is no room for a scene break and it would ruin the format of the chapters. Unless I just did a small break that I do with my one-shots...hm, I'll think on it and see what I can come up with. But thank you for pointing it out.

I'm glad to see you're invested in this fic now. You're stuck with me! It is very complicated and I really hope I don't mess it up somehow. xD

Thank you so much for your always lovely reviews. You're phenomenal.

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