Reading Reviews From Member: alyosha
  
73 Reviews Found

Review #1, by alyoshaAmbrosia: he could be sleeping

4th June 2010:
I like how you write sentences

Author's Response: Thank you so much!

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Review #2, by alyoshaTell James I Said Hi: October 31st, 1995

31st May 2010:
Why do people have to die?

The ending was sad, in an idealistic, happy way.

Author's Response: I know... but that's the way it works, I suppose :( I'm glad you like the ending, and thanks so much for the review! ;)

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Review #3, by alyoshaThis fic is crap, don't read it: Crap

27th May 2010:
OmG THiS Is TeH BEST 15/10!11

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Review #4, by alyoshaFür Das Größere Wohl: Chapter XII: Meldungen

18th May 2010:
Good chapter. I recommended your story over at the forums a few months ago, hoping to get it more of the appreciation it so rightly deserves.

Update soon.

Author's Response: Ah, thank you alyosha! Could your recommendation have been behind this story being featured on the Story Seeker's Podcast? I'm sorry that I have only communicated my thanks this late, as I have unfortunately lost the habit of immediately responding to every review. Hopefully I will be better at that, and I should try to post more often while I'm at it.

Thank you for reading, and thanks again for reviewing and recommending. I do appreciate it.

~ Tim the Enchanter


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Review #5, by alyoshaHow to tame a Marauder: Coming of age

18th May 2010:
What I meant in my previous review when I made reference to your imagination was not only the goats, but other things like them too. It is not only the most absurd things, such as Jame's pranks, but even the most mundane that strike me as quite creative. There have been many cases where I have been fascinated by the things you include in your story. For instance, small details like Beatrice's spells (espcially the one that makes everyone's parchment four inches shorter than it needs to be) and the articles in the newspapers that Larua and co. read every morning are all quite inventive. I know that I personally could never really write anything like that were I ever prevailed upon to do so.

I mean, of course there are times when you are relying on canon quite heavily, like how the curriculum is set out almost exactly as it was for Harry (so not much of your own imagination is needed there), and other times when you make canon-references (to people like Olive Hornby, Remus's rabbit, Snape's worst memory, Ogden etc.). But even so, none of these things call into question your creativity or inventiveness. After all, it's really only logical that such references form part of, if not the majority of, the underlying fabric of your story.

And another thing that is probably worth mentioninging, but related all the same, is that, through your inclusion of these things aforementioned, you really help engender the same vibe that JKR did. In other words, your Hogwarts feels like Hogwarts. Of course there are a thousand other Marauder stories out there (and most of those are set at Hogwarts too), but what sets yours apart is the atmosphere.

It might have something to do with the constant name-dropping of canon characters, or the fact that you include classes with actual course-content happening in them, or also that you include mealtimes, telling us what the characters are eating whilst there, all of which culminate to give the same sense of Hogwarts that Rowling created.

I should also like to point out that some of the stuff "Laura and co." say is rather humorous. The bantering between them is probably the funniest part of your story, and they can be quite insightful as well. However, in contrast, they can sometimes be painfully superficial. But I don't feel like getting into that.

I mean, I would bother to point out the things I dislike about your story, but I think it's a waste of time since they're obviously not there to impress the likes of me, given that I'm not even remotely who you were writing this for.

Author's Response: Hi again! Thanks for the review!

Wow. You may not believe me but to be honest, those spells of Bea's, and the various pranks and the like were actually the hardest part of this fic to write. I don't rate my own imagination very highly at all (one reason I lean on canon so heavily) and to be honest it took simply AGES to come up with those things ... I hated how long it took me to think of things that were mentioned once and that was it, but I felt like they had to be there. So I'm really thrilled that you think so highly of what I did come up with because it means that my imagination may not be as deficient as I had thought. :D

I'm also thriilled that you think my Hogwarts feels like the one JKR created, with course content, food at the meals etc. I did try to emulate her style to some extent because the point of this story was to have something that could reasonably be seen as a prequel, and that of course means lessons and other school things, so I'm glad you appreciate that.

I am curious though as to what you don't like ... while I admit that you're not in my target audience, the fact that you've read as far as you have in this story means that it is clearly appealing to you in some way, but if I can learn how to broaden its appeal by eliminating those things that you dislike (or at least cutting them down somewhat) then that would make me improve as a writer. I accept that some of the conversation is superficial, but then again girl talk is often superficial so I'm not sure how much is my writing style and how much is the content, if that makes any sense. In other words, I want to know if you're seeing things that I'm not, and if you don't tell me then I can never learn, can I? (Of course, if you don't want to go into it I will understand, but I just wanted to flag that just because you're not a member of the target audience it doesn't mean that your views are valued any less. If anything, I probably value them more.)

I must also say that your saying that the atmosphere of my fic sets is apart from the million and one other Marauder stories out there is also a significant compliment so thank you for that. You've probably worked out that a lot of work went into this story so it's great to have that validated by comments like that. Thank you!

cheers, Mel


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Review #6, by alyoshaLegend: Chapter Five

16th May 2010:
It is so refreshingly strange that you have pitted the four founders against each other. Salazar power-playing Rowena to take down Helga and her army.

Your Godric is interesting too. He seems so fragile, and not at all the man he is usually typified as. Regarding his relationship with Helga, I find myself doubting her sincerity, whether she really wants him as much as she says, or whether she is simply using him to her advantage as best she can. I wouldn't put it past her! The way you portray her though, it really could go both ways. On the one hand, she is a very strong woman, but on the other, assuming her actions are genuine, she does have some humanity that Godric can level with.

Anyway, update soon!

Author's Response: Hello alyosha!
Thank you so much for the thoughtful review! Your feedback has been so supportive. I honestly cannot thank you enough. ^_^

Except for Helga, I think Godric is the character that has given me the most difficulty. As you said, he is somewhat vulnerable, although I think there is a sense of burgeoning strength within him, which Helga recognizes. And Helga herself is also rather contradictory. I think she isn't really sure if she needs Godric or simply wants him. ^_^

Again, thanks for everything, alyosha! The next chapter has been posted and chapter seven is in the works. I hope you have a great week. Take care!

Best,
celticbard


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Review #7, by alyoshaLegend: Chapter Three

16th May 2010:
Helga is so forthright! And it is somewhat strange how she is so lax with her captives. Although I suppose the spell she cast on Godric's wand would ensure he never made it very far from her camp.

Also, I wonder what Salazar can possibly have planned.

Another infallible chapter!

Author's Response: Thanks again, alyosha! As far as Helga's anti-escaping charms go, she certainly has placed some spells on camp to keep Godric from running away, although I think it's really his own psychological state that's holding him captive. Helga's the first powerful witch he has ever met, someone who he feels he can relate to. And that is what really keeps him by Helga's side, his desire for companionship and belonging.

Thanks again for the awesome reviews, alyosha! You've been such a supportive reader. I hope you have a great week!

Best,
celticbard


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Review #8, by alyoshaLegend: Chapter Two

16th May 2010:
I love how you have taken all the characters and reversed them, while still keeping to their characteristic traits. While Godric is still courageous and self-sacrificing, he is certainly in no position to exert any strength or heroism. Helga, similarly, is not the typical meek, softly-spoken, and jovial woman she is usually painted to be. Instead she is direct and strong, and full of what seems like power.

And that ending is so enticing.

Author's Response: Hello Alyosha!
Thank you so much for the thoughtful review! I'm really thrilled to hear that you're enjoying this story. Your kind feedback means the world to me.

Haha, yes, I did take some liberties regarding Founder's canon. I suppose I was never really comfortable with Helga being a meek, mild, pleasant witch who liked to teach house elves to cook. I mean, I think she would have to be extraordinarily powerful to have played a part in the founding of Hogwarts. Anyway, just my silly two cents. ;)

Again, thanks for everything! The next chapter has just been completed and should be posted soon. Take care!

Best,
celticbard


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Review #9, by alyoshaGideon: Epilogue

15th May 2010:
I wonder how a Reverse Chronological story can work. You've already given me the ending! Gideon is dead and Andromeda has to be with Ted now.

Well, I suppose there's only one way for me to find out.

Author's Response: I have to say, it's been really difficult to get it working in my head, but now that I know how to tackle it, I think it can work - it's all about the build up to the last event, as with a story told in the normal way... just something a bit different and a nice challenge :P thanks so much for reviewing!

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Review #10, by alyoshaA Place for My Head: A Place for My Head

15th May 2010:
Hello. I saw your comment on the forums, and consdering all the reviews you've given me, I decided to pay the favour forward. It's true, your Rodolphus is rather different to mine, isn't he?

Anyway, first of all, I'd like to say that a lot of your lines really stand out to me. Your first sentence is particularly striking. And others too, like this one: "As if he could ever love her back."

There were more that caught me eye, but I feel rather ridiculous quoting them all back at you. In any case, it is interesting to see that Rodolphus had such a waning interest in Voldemort's ideals, but still went along with them for his own selfish purposes. It speaks to the question of why anyone would join the Death Eaters at all. For Bellatrix it was love, for Rodolphus it was love which descended into hate, and for many others there were probably equally selfish reasons, all rationalised by an anti-Muggle philosophy that gave them the release they wanted.

The second half of your story is really quite engaging. You write action very well, something I, as you probably know, am really quite terrible at. Usually action packed scenes have a barrage of short sentences to relay the action. It is weird that you have an equal balance of short and sharp sentences, and also some longer ones, but still somehow end up with a fast paced experience.

It is a deserving end that Rodolphus died the way he did, with no applause or fanfare; he just died. But for some reason, there is still pity and sympathy to be had for him. He did kind of die sadly. It really was a fitting end, to have his life cut short in such a neglected way, because he had been neglected by his love for all his life too. There was symmetry there.

Anyway, overall, it is a good story.

Author's Response: Thank you so much! You seemed to have caught the essence of the story perfectly and words cannot describe how much that means to me.

I adored writing about Rodolphus because the point I was trying to make was that he is NOT a good person. At all. He is selfish and cruel but yet, I wanted the reader to pity him because he was in love with someone who didn't love him back. I'm so glad that you caught that conflict of traits.

Also I love that you think the mix of short, choppy sentences and longer, flowing sentences works out. I did try rather hard to get some sort of an effect there, haha.

And I never thought of myself as good at writing action scenes, but I'm extremely happy that you liked it. I labored over that part of the story.

Thank you a million times over for such a fantastic review. It means the world to me.


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Review #11, by alyoshaHow to tame a Marauder: Good reasons to ditch Astronomy

10th May 2010:
How do you think up these things? (The Billygoats etc).

Author's Response: Hi! Thanks for the review!

And an excellent question. I think the best reason I can come up with is the fact that I have 2 children, one of whom is quite young, and am therefore surrounded by the sorts of things that only kids can come up with on a daily basis. Some of this had to rub off somehow, didn't it? I really have no idea how I came up with the billy goats but maybe I'd been reading The Three Billy Goats Gruff that week, you never know. :D

On a more serious note, I'm actually really pleased that you sound impressed by my imagination, because to be honest that's one thing I've always felt was a little lacking. I can write, but I can't always think of things to write about, so if this means that my imagination isn't as bad as I'd always thought then that can only be a good thing, right?

cheers, Mel


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Review #12, by alyoshablood.: Prologue: Forever Lost

3rd May 2010:
The butler did it...

Author's Response: Perhaps...

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Review #13, by alyoshaNorth and South: Tre

1st May 2010:
I like this length best. And to put my opinion in perspective, that's coming from someone who has an aversion to lengthy chapters.

Oh, but anyway, I having been meaning to say that you have quite a way with words, you know. You are really good at instilling a sense of your character's surroundings without describing everything about the setting. The mood you create almost comes alive and this in turn helps bring your writing off the page, or in this case, the screen. It's just really immersive.

Author's Response: It did take me a while to find a balance with chapters. 900-1100 words is what I'm trying for now.

I can't not describe things. . no matter what I intend, things get flowery! It's very reassuring to hear that it was neither too much or too little! Thanks again!


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Review #14, by alyoshaNorth and South: Sei

1st May 2010:
Sometimes when I read your story I feel like picking out the lines that stand out to me and then quoting them back at you, but then, other times, I feel like I shouldn't bother because I know that if I did my reviews would be as long as your chapters are.

Author's Response: Lol I have done that myself to other people, particularly with the 500 word challenge! It's great to hear you are enjoying it so much!

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Review #15, by alyoshaNorth and South: Uno

1st May 2010:
I haven't seen sliding doors but Woody Allen made a movie like this as well. I forget what it was called though.

Author's Response: Really? Let me know what it is if you remember! This is the type of what-if scenario I glory in :)

Thanks for reviewing!


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Review #16, by alyoshaNorth and South: Crossroads

1st May 2010:
I value that your chapters are short. They really cater to my even shorter attention span.

(P.S. There are a few mistakes and errors in this chapter, but they're pretty minor ones, just a few misplaces words and that.)

Author's Response: Hi! I think I may have seen you floating around the forums or somesuch? You look familiar!

One of my other wips has monster chapter sizes, so this was a challenge for me to write concisely. Glad you like it!

Oh no, I thought I'd got all those! Must find time to do a huge edit, this was written and shoved inna que during it's 1 hour week :)

Anyhoo, thankyou very much for reviewing, muchly appreciated!


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Review #17, by alyoshaThe Waste of an Age: The Sisters

27th April 2010:
I think somebody's been reading way too much Jane Austen. Hah.

But anyway, this was quite well written. Sometimes I think the descriptions became a little verbose though. But other than that, the attitude of your writing, being so similar to that of historical authors, really lends itself to the story. By adopting such a notable style, you immediately imply the social structures and culture inherent to a particular time period, which works in your favour because it is exactly how I would imagine pureblood society to be, full of debutantes, social stratas, and other suchlike things.

(Sorry my reviews are so lame, by the way.)

Author's Response: Hehe, is it that obvious? XD I was drawing very strongly from Jane Austen's writing, which is why the descriptions and text in general were as wordy as they were. I tend to want to write in the context of the era -- and obviously, as I've never lived in that time period, I had to draw from a few influences. I am very glad you liked it, though! Thank you so much for reviewing (and it was certainly not lame).

XOXO, Kalina


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Review #18, by alyoshaFull Circle: Full Circle

24th April 2010:
The opening was interesting; how it darted between the houses and their respective inhabitants, and some of your descriptions were quite evocative too.

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Review #19, by alyoshaIn Too Deep: February 28, 1981

20th April 2010:
Are there really so many stories out there like this? You say in your author's note that there are. I know of someone who is writing a similar story about Harry, but that is all. So as far as im aware, it is quite original. But what would I know anyway!

I really like your opening paragraphs, they set the scene quite well. But in contrast, I think your dialogue in the beginning comes across a little unnaturally at times and isn't as strong as your descriptions. For instance, when Hermione's parents are bantering over dinner, it seems more like something an alien, who knows nothing of humanity, might write if they were ever prevailed upon to write a conversation. It just seemed slightly contrived.

However, pushing that side, I think when you are writing the Death Eaters, the conversation is a lot better. And you are good at writing tension too. The chapter gets incredibly tense as soon as the bang is heard at the door, and from then on I didn't want to look away.

When you explain people's thoughts and anxieties, it gives another touch of realism as well. Like when Lucius was afraid of what the baby would do to his reputation etc.

So yeah. All things considering, I liked the chapter, and will likely read the next.

But just a question: can you actually buy guns in England?

Author's Response: I thought it was original as well, but I know of one on Portkey with Hermione as a Death Eater. But that's the only one. Other reviewers have pointed it out to me that there were others, but I haven't seen them.

Hmm interesting. I'm not used to writing other characters like Hermione's parents, so that might be why. Or I could be making up excuses. Either way...

Awe thanks :)

Lol yeah, good 'ol Lucius.

Thanks so much!

I have no idea. I live in the States, so some of my British analogies could be off.


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Review #20, by alyoshaMadam Minister: Prologue

13th April 2010:
This is rather interesting. What a curious topic to write about. You've set the stage for the story, and Im defintiely intrigued to see what happens next.

Author's Response: Thanks so much for the kind review, alyosha!

Best,
celticbard


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Review #21, by alyoshaVisions and Revisions: I should have been a pair of ragged claws

11th April 2010:
This probably goes without saying, since all of your stories are so wonderfully written, but i really quite liked this. You are so good at describing things.

And I quote,

"Her breath rises in a delicate cloud in the chill air."

Just everything about this story is so good. I think the isolation of Helena comes through the descriptions as well, a girl alone with only a raging blue fire for company, and a hole in her boot. She may have gained wisdom with the diadem, but she was a fool to take it in the first place.

I am always intrigued to read Founders Era stories, as they are so often under-represented on this site. And I think your portrayal of Helena was one of the only times where I could actually see where she was coming from without fully hating her personality.

So to avoid writing a review as long as your story itself, i shall just conclude in saying that this was well done.

And Nantes has to have made you the best banner in the world, or thereabouts

Author's Response: Thank you so much for this review - I'm sorry it took me a long time to respond!

That line you quoted was actually an afterthought, because I thought that part needed a little something extra. It clearly paid off, but it was so funny to see that line quoted, out of all others!

I am also intrigued by Founders stories, for exactly the same reason - they're a rare find. I've always been afraid to try it myself, as period pieces are not my forte, but I love to read a well-written Founders.

I wanted to redeem Helena a bit - keep her obvious flaws, but make her a bit more sympathetic. I think her story was a sad and lonely one, so there is some room there to feel for her.

Yes, the banner is lovely - I fell in love with it right away. And it was actually in the Up for Grabs section! I couldn't believe my luck in finding it, because I was near to tearing my hair out, trying to figure out a good banner for a collection of one-shots about largely unrelated characters.

Thanks again for the review!


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Review #22, by alyoshaExotic Bloom: Hell is empty and all the devils are here.

5th April 2010:
While I do not much care for these types of stories, you really do have an artistic flare for writing them.

Author's Response: thanks so much :)

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Review #23, by alyoshaOh! How Horrid!: To Be Introduced, Sort Of

28th March 2010:
This is like a play.

We had to use a gyroscope in physics once. *involuntary shudder*

I realise this review isn't worth the paper it isn't printed on, but I simply wished to inform you that i had read this.

Author's Response: Nah man, makes me feel special that you read probably the worst representation of my writing and its style.

And yeah, kind of is like a play, isn't it?

Sorry about the gyroscope man - I had a little toy one when I was but a wee lad, and I remember it fondly . . . so yeah . . .


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Review #24, by alyoshaThe Absurd Fanfic Revolution: Chapter I: HAGGIS ATTACK!

21st December 2009:
I was just complaining to myself that there weren't any stories like this anymore. Hahaha

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Review #25, by alyoshaScreams of a Death Eater: Screams of a Death Eater

19th December 2009:
I really liked the abrupt opening of your story. The grit-filled bowl being thrown haphazardly into the cell gave an immediate sense of the setting without any need of a fully detailed description of it.

And your narrative was equally intriguing. It's funny how the voice of your story double-guesses itself so often. For example, when you are describing Bellatrix's attire (her dress made of rags), or when you're alluding to the prisoner's insanity (or lack thereof). It's an interesting style and it adds humour.

But I feel that the beginning of your story was stronger than the ending. And I'm not sure the story, as a whole, had much direction other than painting a portrait of Bellatrix's life up until a certain, and somewhat irrelevant, point.

But I liked it regardless.

Author's Response: Thanks! I'm glad you liked it - and I agree, it doesn't have all that much of a point. :/ It's just a little thing I threw together.

Thanks again for the awesome review!


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