Reading Reviews From Member: long_live_luna_bellatrix
  
646 Reviews Found

Review #26, by long_live_luna_bellatrixTrue Romance: Such Great Heights

22nd August 2015:
Happy baby shower once again!

Rose’s description of Ron and Hermione fits how I imagine them as parents. I can totally see Hermione thinking that her children are as ambitious and energetic about work as she is, and coming off as overbearing as a result. I can also easily imagine Ron not being great at confronting her about things—but I hope for Rose’s sake that he manages to.

Wow, I can’t believe Scorpius kissed Albus! I mean, I can understand why Albus went in for the kiss, but I was surprised that Scorpius returned it. I suppose they do have a lot of history, but still.

It was so funny listening to Brandon talk to Rose about her job woes… He IS a really good listener! No wonder Albus wanted to be more like him in the last chapter. I was a little surprised at how suddenly their relationship popped up though. I already know how she’s connected to Scorpius, and I deduced from her conversation with Al earlier in the chapter that they get along well and keep each other caught up on their lives. So it only makes sense that she’d at least know who Brandon is… But this seems like they’re friends, or at least acquaintances, outside of their connection to Albus as well. Is that correct? I wasn’t really sure.

I’m really curious about how these relationships begin to evolve… I feel myself rooting for Brandon and Albus over Scorpius and Albus, but at the same time I know where Scorpius’ thing with Corbin is going and I don’t exactly wish that on him. I’m looking forward to getting to know the characters better!

Author's Response: yay! you're here for another chapter :D

I'm so glad you like Ron and Hermione as parents. Hermione does seem a bit overbearing but it does come from a place of caring and well-meaning. :-/ I do doubt Ron ever becomes very good at confronting interpersonal issues unless things get very out of hand.

Both of them are quite conflicted at this point. Um, they keep up the conflict for a while.

Brandon and Rose formed a somewhat friendship after he dated Al the first go around. For Rose it was a "I really like your ex and I'm gng to be friends with him" convo with Albus at some point.

You'll see a lot of evolution over the next few chapters!

Thank you so much for a lovely review! ♥


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Review #27, by long_live_luna_bellatrixTrue Romance: New Slang

22nd August 2015:
First of all, happy baby shower!!! I hope you enjoy these reviews, as well as the rest of the celebration!

Since I’ve already read Winding Road, I’m afraid I only know too how well how Scorpius’ new relationship is going to go. Poor guy. I’ll be curious to see how it goes though, and how Albus learns what’s happening (assuming he ever learns, which I think he will. I think it would be really interesting to watch for Scorpius’ warning signs and seeing when Albus finally catches them, and then how he approaches the subject).

I thought it was interesting how Albus thought back to Brandon as a template for how to act. It speaks to how much Albus must look up to Brandon, if he thinks he’s worth emulating. Yet another relationship I’m definitely curious to see playing out.

You did a really good job at showing Albus grappling with conflicting emotions. He was upset about Scorpius’ new boyfriend but tried to hold his emotions back in front of James; his stomach “lurched excitedly” when he heard Brandon’s voice, but then when he spoke he sounded awkward and uncomfortable. I definitely got a really interesting picture of Albus’ emotional situation at this point in his life.

I wasn’t expecting that trick at the end with James inviting Brandon to meet them! Interesting! I like what I’ve seen of Brandon so far, but I’d definitely like to get to know him better. Albus has so much going on now, with these two guys who are sort of out of his life but also definitely still a spark for him.

Overall, this was a really enjoyable first chapter. The writing flowed so well, and I feel like I got a good introduction to a lot of characters without it ever feeling rushed or anything. I’m looking forward to seeing how this goes!

Author's Response: I'm completely fascinated by teh idea of someone reading this after reading the one shots that follow. I hope it's cool to see some of the preceding relationships as they grow.

I do think Brandon was a huge role model for Albus when they first dated and he kind stays in that position for a while with him.

I often worry that Al just seems kind of aimless but it's very reassuring to hear that his conflict comes through. ♥

You'll definitely get more of Brandon in future chapters. and the trick with James is kind of silly but it's the kind of thing I could see a sibling doing.

thank you so much for a wonderful review!


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Review #28, by long_live_luna_bellatrixJigsaw: Piece #6

17th August 2015:
Haha, the cafe where Jane works is so gross. Like, you nailed that "unappealing" atmosphere right on the head. But it was also kind of funny. Like, who would ever want to spend time in a shop with a deaf, aggressive old woman who serves gray, lukewarm tea? Bleck.

I do feel a little bad for Jane. Roxanne's job situation, while (until recently) kind of dreadful, is at least understandable: as a reporter, you have to pay your dues with the small stories before earning the big ones. But being several years out of school, and splitting your time between working at an awful cafe and cleaning rooms at a bank? That's definitely not what anyone envisions for themselves several years out of school.

You're still doing a fantastic job with the whole Daniel thing. I really feel like I'm in Roxanne's skin when she's dealing with him: the awkwardness, the hesitation, the longing, the uncomfortable collision of the closeness of their past with the current distance between them... all of it feels so real. My first thought when she ran into him and he agreed to talk was, "Wait! If that happened to me, I'd be so flustered because this is spontaneous and I haven't had time to plan out my speech in my head yet!" And then I thought maybe I was getting a little too into it. :P Plus, I'm sure Roxanne has been going over what she wants to say for days.

I was SO happy when he said they could try to be friends. I know Roxanne's heart was a little broken all over again, but I was thrilled. It has to be a step in the right direction, right?

And fantastic job on the end of the chapter. It makes it that much more exciting that this development happened when Daniel and Roxanne were together, and that they're even Apparating to the scene together! Lovely job of bringing us back from Roxanne's personal life toward the main mystery too.

Don't think I'm going to forget about Jane, though... There's clearly something happening and while I don't feel like she'd directly connected to the disappearance, something funky is clearly happening.

Great job, as always!

Author's Response: Isn't it though? I mean, I'm not exactly sure how it's still open and it was really fun to imagine it and describe it, even though it's not the nicest place for Jane to have to work. And you're completely right about Jane - it's not the sort of life you envision for yourself five years after leaving school, still without any real sense of direction, but I really wanted to show a realistic portrayal of life for twenty-somethings in this story because I think so often in fic they're just in the job that they want and have an ideal life, whereas that isn't true to real life.

I'm glad you like the way I'm writing and developing the situation with Daniel! Roxy has definitely been rehearsing all the different possible things she could say to Daniel - almost since they broke up and she's got used to the idea that it's more permanent than she imagined. It makes me so happy that you're able to put yourself in Roxanne's place and experience it all as if you're her!

Thank you again for another wonderful review, and I'm so pleased that you're still enjoying this story!


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Review #29, by long_live_luna_bellatrixChai, Pakoras, and a Friend in the Wee Hours of the Morning: Chai, Pakoras, and a Friend

13th August 2015:
Wow oh wow. I'm not even that much of a fluff person, but I really, really, really, loved this. Neville and Hannah were just... amazing. You captured all their love with just the right amount of humor and dorkiness, and it worked so well.

I loved so many lines in this story... whether because they were funny or just beautifully written: "she was in London, running the Leaky Cauldron with an efficiency and practicality that would put many an army to shame. It was sort of sexy." “'Hannah.' The sound of rich chocolate and warm familiarity wrapped around Hannah" "If this were a dream, she was pretty certain that he wouldn’t be wearing pyjamas – or anything, really." "I’m going to be married to the sexy Matron, too!” "In some ways, his years as an Auror had prepared him well for all the drama, the teenage angst, the wrangling of semi-dangerous plants, and the definitely-dangerous humans that were part of his job description."

Also, all the talk of food made me hungry. Way to go on that one. My mouth was just watering the whole time Hannah was cooking.

I've wanted to write about Neville and Hannah for awhile now, and I've even considered writing something about Hannah deciding to become the Matron at Hogwarts, but now I don't think I'll ever quite think of the idea again without picturing this story. I loved how they interacted with each other. The dreaming parts were pretty adorable.

One thing that caught my attention was the fact that both of them clearly missed each other very much-- that's what a lot of the story is about, really-- and yet when Hannah mentioned applying to be the Matron, it took a long while (at least, longer than I'd expected) for either of them to mention the fact that if she got the job they'd work in the same place. Maybe Neville is just totally selfless and wouldn't bring that up before Hannah did, but I felt like it would have been nice to at least hear him think about that even if he didn't say it right away.

Anyway, this was just such a lovely story and I'm so glad that I stumbled upon it. It was wonderfully written-- I loved the tidbits about the ultra-prepared house elves too. Well done!

Author's Response: Yayayayayay! I love it when people who usually don't read/like fluff read these stories and still enjoy it. That means so much to me. Thank you!

Wow! So many favourite lines! I'm really pleased!

Seriously, the real reason why I wrote this series is to make people hungry. It was the best decision that I wrote each story whilst I was hungry myself :P

WRITE IT. I'd read it :) There needs to be more Hannah (and Neville) out there in the world.

I was a little worried about how long it took me to get to the "I miss you heaps" part of the story. In the end, I chose to delay it - and I agree, it was a LONG time coming here - because it felt like it was something that they'd already discussed to death. They've been living like this for quite some time now, and although as readers this is the first time we see them in this situation, they've been here before. Writing the characters that way didn't feel like they were achieving anything productive by it. That's the only reason it comes up in the story so late.

Thank you so much for this very lovely review :)


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Review #30, by long_live_luna_bellatrixJigsaw: Piece #5

13th August 2015:
Great start to this chapter! I have no idea what the scene means, but I like it all the same. The plot thickens, I guess...

I'm so glad the story about Daniel is finally out! I'm not sure how much longer I could have waited patiently ;) But it all makes sense now. This just goes to show how complicated things can get when you've got handfuls of cousins everywhere with their own baggage, and one drunken mistake just kind reverberates out through the family. Poor Roxanne! Although it does seem fishy, what Daniel was doing, being out late and all. I wonder if I'll ever learn more about that...

And oh no, why is Jane avoiding Roxanne?! That can't be good... I can't see her being jealous of Roxanne's big story, but what else could it be? Not a connection to the story? I don't know. Don't think that one slipped by me, I'll be looking out for answers!

So yeah, basically, I'm just really impressed that you had this 4500+ word chapter that was all kind of back story (minus the opening scene) and yet it was still really interesting the whole time and left me feeling like I couldn't possibly have read it as fast as I did. It was great to simultaneously learn more about Roxanne's past but also to get a look at her relationship with Lucy. I like Lucy-- a lot. Everyone needs some bluntness now and then.

Anyway, I liked this chapter and am looking forward to seeing the mystery progress. I like that you include snippets of the articles that Roxanne is writing; it's a good reminder of how this story began in the first place. Plus it mixes things up a little.

I'll be back again soon to read more! I have to say, I've done review tags on and off for awhile, but I've never R&R-ed a chapter of a story only to go through and know that I'd have to keep reading and reviewing. I guess maybe with review tag I usually stick to people's one shots, but this one caught my eye... Plus your recent one shots seemed to have enough reviews that I thought you'd appreciate them on this story more. Either way, I'm really glad I found this!

Author's Response: Those scenes are meant to be as ambiguous as possible, to be honest, so I'm not exactly sad that you're not sure what it means yet. Maybe once the story is finished, it'll be easier to make sense of what's happening in these scenes.

Haha, I'm glad that the story about Daniel came out at the right time! Originally I had planned for this reveal to happen in the fourth chapter but it got put back a little. There'll definitely be a lot more information about Daniel and Roxanne in the rest of the story :)

I couldn't possibly say why Jane's been avoiding Roxy at the moment... :P Though I have to say, it's really nice having a reader who's so observant about little details like that!

One thing I always worry about in this story is whether or not there's enough action and plot happening in it, even though I think the backstory and some of the 'filler' chapters are necessary for the plot development and character development too. I'm so glad you like Lucy (she's so fun to write) and that you found the chapter interesting!

Thank you so much for reading and reviewing this story so consistently - I'm so excited that you're interested enough in it to keep coming back, even after review tag!


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Review #31, by long_live_luna_bellatrixJigsaw: Piece #4

12th August 2015:
Another very solid chapter. :) I'll just hop in and go through the thoughts I had on it, because I was kind of noting them down as I read.

This line: "‘Excuse me.’ My voice is smooth, spinning in the air like sugar." Once again, for all her nerves, when Roxanne has to act fast some instinct seems to take over. She evaluated these employees and she tailors her attitude toward what she sees-- smart going on her part! (By the way, if I ever mention Roxanne but use the name "Rose" I apologize in advance, please don't judge me. I don't know how many times I've accidentally written Rose already and had to delete it. I don't know where the habit's from but it appears to be there)

What a cool idea to have a Pensieve at the office of the Prophet! I really like that, it's a great way to get around the note taking thing. I definitely wouldn't have thought of that. It is also a pretty sneaky way to get around people's nerves about being recorded, as you mentioned.

That part with the captive though! That's so intense. You threw it in at just the right time; just when Roxanne uncovers a rival at the Prophet, you show us that this isn't a simple disappearance, and it's much darker than originally thought as well. Crazy. It's interesting that this is the exact sort of dark thing that Roxanne has never encountered but that was classic Voldemort stuff back in the day. (Another apology: I feel like my tense switching is all over the place in these reviews, so sorry about that...)

It's really funny how George treats his new employee behind the counter. It's also another example of how I feel immediately connected to every character I meet, and this seems like such a George thing to do as well. It's nice to see him both as lovely dad but also as nefarious as ever. This is a grown up George that I like.

There was one typo i saw, when Roxanne mentioned Knockturn Alley to her dad: "recently they’ve tried to distant themselves from it" instead of "distance."

I loved pretty much all the tidbits about Roxanne's parents, whether it was the note about the coffee drinking habits of her mother (what a clever thing to include, it never even occurred to me that the Weasleys are tea drinkers) or the last line of the chapter itself.

Once again, great, great job!

Author's Response: Hehe there is no judgement here at all - you're not the first person to call Roxy 'Rose' either, if that helps :P I think it's probably because she's not so often written about. Her instincts do definitely take over here, to be honest, and I think that she needs to have some more confidence in herself because of moments like this.

I'm so pleased you like the idea of having a Pensieve at the Prophet! It's not something I'd even thought of before writing this chapter (actually, I hadn't planned out any of this chapter before writing it...) but I'm glad you like the detail. Adding in little titbits like that is a lot of fun.

It's great that you liked the scene with the captive too! Again, it isn't something I'd really planned before writing it, but I'm so glad that you think it worked where it was in the chapter and what it showed of the disappearance.

Yay, I'm so glad you liked George and Angelina! I hadn't planned to write them, like I said, and since I tend to write minor characters and avoid those that are written about more in the books or fanfiction, I was a bit nervous about them. I'm really pleased you liked them here.

Thank you for a lovely review!


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Review #32, by long_live_luna_bellatrixJigsaw: Piece #3

12th August 2015:
Hi again!

I think what I'm enjoying most about this story so far is the characters. Don't get me wrong, I'm a fan of the plot and how it's progressing too, but it's the characters that really have me at the moment. You've done such a wonderful job with Rose, I already care so much for her and can empathize with her challenges. I'll come back to talking about her later. But I also love the cast of characters that's slowly coming into view around her. Whether I'm getting mad at Miranda on Rose's behalf or falling a little in love with Andy for looking out for her, or just watching what's happening with Obediah and Amanda, everyone feels so real and so fascinating. Love it. (In particular, I was so, so satisfied watching Miranda get put in her place)

I noticed that you opened up the chapter with a headline: "Businessman Missing". I wonder, is there a reason you stuck with such a succinct headline? Given that it's a front page story, it should have enough space on a newspaper page to earn a longer headline, and a snappy headline would make the beginning of the chapter just that much more interesting.

One of my favorite lines of the chapter was this one: "I realise that now, it’s not even the chance of promotion that is driving me forward – it’s the story itself. There’s a chance that I might find out what happened to Malcolm Armstrong before anyone else, and I want to – have to – solve this mystery." It spoke so much about what this case will become to Rose. I loved learning about this new motivation of hers because it makes her even more genuine than before. Maybe it also betrays a little bit of how fresh a reporter she is; I'd imagine that with reporting, maybe like with medicine, after a while you can't personally invest yourself in every single story you get because it becomes exhausting and counterproductive. But I love it all the same.

This was another interesting moment: "At the sound of my voice, Lily’s brown eyes seem to instinctively find mind, however much she’s trying to pretend that I don’t exist. When I see how wide they are, I know that I’ve hit the mark." For me, it demonstrated that Rose might have a natural instinct for reporting. If she got to the heart of the matter in one question, imagine what she'll do in the future... Plus, it was neat that she mentioned that even for her question last chapter, the fact that Mockridge refused to answer it indicated that it was an important question. Yay Rose!

Finally, I think you're really skillfully weaving Rose's personal struggles into the main story about the disappearance. Between the appearance of Lucy and the ending of the chapter (what an ending!) I'm still so curious! Not to mention all the Daniel stuff, of course.

Great job!!!

Author's Response: Hello!

I'm not going to be offended at that at all - thank you so much, in fact! I think I've already said that I did come up with a cast of characters (the main ones, at least) before I started writing this story, but when I was writing, some of them really came to life and new characters got introduced. I'm so pleased that people like the different characters that have been introduced in the story so far and the way that I've portrayed their personalities!

I wrote this chapter so long ago that I'm not really sure if there's a reason I chose that headline, other than not being able to think of anything better :P I'll have a look at that though, because that's a really good point - thank you for mentioning it!

The mystery is definitely going to become something very important to Roxy, and I'm glad you saw how that line foreshadowed some of the things that are going to happen in the future in this novel. It does betray how inexperienced she is too, I think, because you can't afford to invest yourself in every story that you report if you're going to become a proper journalist, no matter how difficult that is to avoid.

Roxy does have some really good instincts for reporting - she's got a lot of talent for it, and I think there are several things that show that she has a lot of potential but she's not always ready to believe in herself yet.

Thank you so much for this lovely review!


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Review #33, by long_live_luna_bellatrixJigsaw: Piece #2

9th August 2015:
Exciting second chapter! I was immediately drawn into it. I can't say I have any great guesses about the nature of the disappearance, or where the mystery will lead, but I'm enjoying it quite a bit.

You did a really great job with Roxanne in this chapter. I was totally immersed in her character. When Roxanne asked her question and Mockridge refused to answer it, you captured Roxanne's ensuing embarrassment SO WELL. I know this was a tiny moment in the chapter, but I had been hoping Roxanne would ask a question, and I was so proud of her when she did. And when she was ashamed that she got nothing out of Mockridge, well, I really felt for her. This is something that I feel like I've gone through so many times, that everyone goes through: being new to a situation, trying to put oneself out there, just a little, and getting shut down. The worst part is feeling like you've failed-- in reality, no one else really notices because it wasn't that big a deal, but you feel like everyone is judging you. You showed all of that in just a couple sentences. For me, it just captures the essence of Roxanne's mindset for the chapter.

And then, more about Daniel... I'm glad you tossed him in there too, right after mentioning it in the first chapter. So that people like me who sometimes read too fast won't forget about him. :P That whole scene with him was well done, and we still know so little about what happened with him...! I'll just have to wait and see, I guess.

I was also interested by Roxanne's attitude toward Richard... The first time he's introduced, it feels like just that, an introduction. But then Roxanne takes the time to notice how seriously he takes his work... Potential romance? Potentially important character? I'll keep an eye out for him...

Overall, this was a great chapter, and I had a good time reading it. I'm looking forward to seeing Roxanne develop as a reporter and as a person.

Author's Response: I'm really glad that you're still enjoying the story, and that you found this chapter exciting too!

Roxanne is one of those characters that's really grown as I've been writing her, and I'm so pleased that other people like her too. Roxy's so unsure of herself here, and she's in a situation that she feels she should be prepared for but then she's thrust into it and doubts herself. I'm so pleased that you could relate to that (not because you've felt the same way of course, but just because I think that's something a lot of people experience and I'm glad you could identify with her because of it).

I couldn't decide for AGES how long I should wait before throwing Daniel into the story, and it felt like this chapter was the right one for him to first appear in. You'll get to know more about him in a few chapters.

Richard is one of those characters who barely mattered when I first began planning this story, but he's kind of blossomed as I've been writing and he took more of a role here than I intended. I'm glad you're interested by him, though!

Thank you so much for another fantastic review!


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Review #34, by long_live_luna_bellatrixJigsaw: Piece #1

8th August 2015:
Hi there! I'm really glad I clicked on this story. It's evident that this is a carefully written first chapter, plenty of attention to detail, so I can only assume that the rest of the story is like that as well. I feel like I have a good introduction to Roxanne through her situation at work, but I'm also intrigued by the other things you hinted at, like the tension with her family and this man Daniel.

Loved the way you ended the chapter with our first real taste of drama (well, scratch that, second: the first couple paragraphs were certainly dramatic). A long way from exploding teapots! In general, I think the way you set up the whole chapter was well done. Sandwiching the slower, more introductory parts between bits of excitement, and throwing in those hints at family turmoil along the way too. The only part I can't quite account for is the long conversation with Violet Toots (I find the name amusing, I hate to admit it-- I promise I'm not a ten year old boy! Is the surname from canon? I couldn't tell, the way you referenced Violet's father implied that it could be). I wonder if Miranda's disappearance has something to do with Roxanne's first story...

It was also interesting that you've thrown some magical phones into the mix. How did you come to that decision? Are the phones going to come into play more farther in the story? Or was it simply that you (like me) can't understand why wizards have all the magic in the worlds at their disposal and the closest thing they have to instantaneous communication is sending talking Patronuses to each other? (I also enjoyed the wizards' distrust of Roxanne's phone in the bar. That I can totally see happening when wizards integrate Muggle technology into their world)

Overall, the writing was extremely tight, and I definitely enjoyed myself. Curious to see where this goes!

Author's Response: Hi, lllb! I'm sorry it's taken me so long to reply to all these wonderful reviews you've left me, but I really am grateful for them and your support for this story!

This first chapter was one that I reworked quite a lot before I published it, and I'm really pleased that you think it's a good introduction to the story and the way that I set up the different sections in relation to each other. I kind of wanted to have a lull between the opening paragraphs and the dramatic ending, with something more mundane - a taste of Roxy's everyday life - happening, so that the reader gets to know what her life is like usually.

Violet Toots is meant to be (in my head canon) the daughter of Tilden Toots, who's a canon author - I'm glad you liked the name (and it is amusing, it's okay :P).

The magical phones were something I thought about introducing for quite a while in the story - I'm aware it's something that a lot of people have strong head canon for. Part of it is definitely that I can't understand how they didn't have a more instant form of communication, but they will also come to play more of a role in the story. I just wanted to introduce them in a plausible way and I'm glad you liked the wizards' distrust of them, too.

Thank you so much for this great review!


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Review #35, by long_live_luna_bellatrixWinding Road: Finding Home

8th August 2015:
Hi, I'm stopping by for the BvB review fest. When I scrolled through the thread I clicked on Ravenclaw authors' names that others had mentioned reviewing, and when I came across your penname, I realized that I didn't know if I'd ever read any of your stories. So here I am. :)

I know nothing of the larger universe in which this story is set, but I can let you know that it read quite well as a stand alone story. It even made me curious to read more of what you've done with these characters. Scorpius came across as really well developed, and there were hints of deeper stories with Albus and Brandon that were interesting too. As you mentioned in your A/N, this is just a single moment in Scorpius' recovery. And for a single moment, it was quite powerful. I felt privy to Scorpius' confusion, to his determination to get better to take his Healer's advice while simultaneously struggling to control his continuing fear. It was also interesting to see the different roles of the people around him; he was cautious but truthful with his parents, more open with his friends but by no means "cured" when he was with him.

This might sound ridiculous, but I appreciated the simple fact of Scorpius being able to cry throughout the story. Crying seems to be such a taboo thing for men, in private or in public, and you acknowledged Scorpius doing both. It was refreshing to have the tough guy stereotype brushed away, and, in fact, to have no reference at all to Scorpius feeling like he had to "man up." It added to the power of the story's statement about the long, hard road to recovery.

There's really nothing more I can think of that your story needs. The writing was beautiful; I see so much in-your-face elaborate writing on this site, a lot unnecessary vocab, etc., and here I loved that I got all the details I needed to picture the scene without drowning in dense prose. Not that dense prose is always a bad thing, but, well, I guess I'm just to say that I enjoyed it ;) The only thing that caught me up was that at first I thought that Corbin appeared too fast-- but then I looked everything back over again and acknowledged that I was probably just reading too fast. You did set it up with Scorpius mistakenly seeing him once, after all.

Anyway, really great job with this, and I'll try to come back again and dip my toes into some of your other stories!

Author's Response: !!! Your review just tickles me! I always feel like the stories I write in this universe fall flat for people who haven't been with the characters from the first story I wrote about them so I never really think of them as standalone but I'm glad this was a good read without the backstory stuff. Albus, Brandon, and Scorpius do have quite a well developed history together which I've written a ton about. I'm even more happy that you felt Scrpius's emotions through this, it was such a hard piece to write from the emotional perspective.

I didn't really think about that with him crying. You're right though, men really don't get a chance to cry in public and when they do it's a bit taboo.

I get what you mean about people putting too much into the prose. This is a pretty basic narration (I think I tend to go for straightforward narration most of the time).

Thank you so much for a wonderful review!!

-Rose


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Review #36, by long_live_luna_bellatrixFor the dancing and the dreaming: For the dancing and the dreaming

8th August 2015:
Hi there. I'm stopping by for the BvB review fest, and I'm really glad I stumbled upon this.

It seems like this point in time is one we don't see that often for the Weasleys; it's post Arthur and Molly falling in love and getting married, but before they have a gaggle of children getting underfoot. And when I realized that this was going to about them moving into the Burrow, I couldn't help but smile-- what a great idea! And Arthur's disparaging line about the little house being a "burrow" was perfect, well done with that.

I think you did a good handling Arthur and Molly as young, new parents. You captured that balance between worrying about making ends meet but also trusting that love will get one through hard times. I can easily picture Molly and Arthur balancing those two things time and time again in the early stages of their marriage-- and probably beyond.

You also included a nice amount of small details to add to the story. The remarks about the toaster and the decreasing patronage of Molly's pub brought everything to life. Normally I'd suggest that this story could use even more of those details, to expand our knowledge of the universe in which the story is set even more; maybe more details about Bill as a child, a hint into if Molly and Arthur are yet thinking of another baby, etc., but I do believe that this works quite well just the way it is. It's a sweet, touching story, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Well done!

Author's Response: Hello! Thanks so much for taking the time to review. I agree that the story could be fleshed out... recently Arthur and Molly has been all I think about, so maybe sometime I'll write them a longer fic;)

Thanks again!
-Georgia


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Review #37, by long_live_luna_bellatrixGloria: Gloria

22nd June 2015:
I once had a discussion with someone about the concept of the perfect reader; the concept of every piece of writing having one perfectly sympathetic listener, who was made for the story as much as the story was made for him or her. I have to warn you that I am not this story's perfect reader. I'm not well versed enough in Homer, or in anything else you referenced, to appreciate this story fully; having been very quiet in the world of hpff and Harry Potter in general for awhile now, even my Albus and Gellert history is a bit rusty. But I'm doing my best, because I do believe this is a story worth appreciating.

When I saw the length of this I blinked, and then dove right in. And I think the length is ultimately quite fitting; if anything, it allowed me to sink deeper and deeper into the story as it went along, so that by the end, I was fully entrenched in it. The writing was beautiful, but it required a lot of attention (I know I'd like to go back and read this again). And requiring my full attention, if anything, just indicates to me how much thought and effort clearly went into this. Every word seemed to fit perfectly (one exception: there was a moment when you described water falling out of Gellert's hair as a miniature rain shower, and I felt that that might not have been the strongest image in the story). Anyway, what I'm trying to get at is that this is a story intended for close reading, not skimming, and the length allowed me to sink into that close reading, if that makes sense. And I truly enjoyed it.

I think the second person perspective really worked for this. Sometimes, when people use it, it seems almost random, but here I felt that it truly added to the story. Combined with the breaking up of the story into sections, and separating the sections with Gellert's voice in italics, it really told the story in an engaging way.

The line that really stopped me was this one, I loved it to pieces: "It is then that you learn that though the rest of the tree might be rotten, the fruit sour and the flowers fading, love is always pure." Of course the entire story is filled to the brim with beautiful imagery and lovely wording, but this felt like a powerful sentence. I think it also could almost sum up a good deal of the story itself. Power, glory, murder, they all mingled in ways wonderful and terrible, but the love itself isn't something we should condemn. That's something I got out of it, anyway.

Another thing I loved was how you portrayed Albus in this, as something far different from the wise, perfect old man we know from the books. I think you really got at his deeper character, and some deep questions in general, with this talk of glory. Got me thinking.

Overall, this was a beautiful story, and like I said I will probably reread it just to try and soak up more of it-- especially in the beginning when I hadn't settled in yet. Very well done! It's clear that this was carefully thought through, and carefully written, and that care all paid off in a big way.

-lllb

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Review #38, by long_live_luna_bellatrixNot entirely true: Truth Is Out

20th March 2015:
Hey, I'm here for the Blue v. Bronze review battle.

I'm always curious when it comes to stories about wizards explaining their life to Muggles, as it must be such a difficult and delicate process. So already, I'm intrigued by your story. I think it's adorable that Josh and Maddie have remained friends for so long, and that now that he's an adult, he wants to share his world with her. I was a little surprised that he got permission from the Minister for her to come to the World Cup; I thought the secrecy laws of the wizarding world were stricter than that, and that Josh maybe shouldn't be telling Maddie anything about magic at all. But at the same time, I'm happy to go along with it for the sake of the story.

I'm curious as to why you decided that Maddie would be five years older than Josh. It makes for a slightly more interesting relationship, I suppose, but I'm still wondering if there's another reason. At first I was skeptical; a ten-year-old befriending a five-year-old? But your description actually makes a lot of sense: there are definitely people out there who naturally find themselves drawn to those who are weaker than them. I hope we continue to see that side of Maddie throughout the story. I'm not sure if she would have been aware of that part of herself at such a young age; I'd imagine it to be more of an unconscious thing. That was the one place I was a little skeptical.

I have to say, I'm in awe of you for writing in a language that's not your natural one. Do you mind me asking what your first language is? Purely out of curiosity. I'm majorly in awe of you. This story reads quite well, you did a great job.

Overall, a good start to a story!

-lllb

Author's Response: Hi!

I've been taking a break from HPFF, so I'm terribly to answer your review after 9 months. I'm actually ashamed.

Thank you for your review. Thinking back on the story I still suport the idea of Josh being allowed to take Maddie to see the Quidditch Cup. I just think that someone people are truthworthy enough to be told big secrets like that. And I hope in my sequel to this story I will prove that Maddie was one of those people.

And thank you! It means a lot! I'm from Poland :3

-- Monika


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Review #39, by long_live_luna_bellatrixStand Tall: Hands Touch

19th March 2015:
First off, I am a huge fan of your chapter titles! I love Wicked, and I've always thought "I'm Not That Girl" was an incredibly moving song. It sounds like it is appropriate for your story, too, so kudos.

I had to read this story when I saw the summary. I was very recently introduced to someone with cerebral palsy, who is also involved in a sort of movement called "disability poetics." So disabilities in literature, especially concerning cerebral palsy, has been on mind for a few weeks. What was your inspiration for this story, and for Alba herself? I like what you've done with it so far. Alba seems believable, and while her disability is quite present, it doesn't seem to consume her or be the only part of her identity that matters. That said, I would definitely like to see even more non-cerebral-palsy-related parts of her personality and her life shine through in later chapters.

The writing was really solid here, it all felt very smooth and was quite engaging. You had just the right mix of summarizing and including the right details. James was amusing; I love his friendship with Alba. I want to punch his girlfriend, though. How can he let her treat Alba like that?! I was actually a little shocked by her reaction to Alba, since I feel like teenage girls' brand of meanness is a little more passive-aggressive than that.

There were perhaps three or four typos scattered throughout the chapter, but nothing major. "He always insisted that with his father being the youngest Seeker in the past centure," for instance: I'm guessing you meant "century"? If you'd like to read it through one more time with a sharp eye, I'm sure you could square all of those away.

Also, there was one line that came off as a little awkward to me: "Long mahogany hair that curled slightly, vivaciously curved, Keeper of the Gryffindor Quidditch team." The way it's currently worded, it sounds like "vivaciously curved" is describing her hair, not her figure. Maybe there's a way to tweak things around there?

I'm intrigued by this Triwizard Tournament coming up. More kudos to you, because I'd be way too scared to try and invent three original, creative, mind-blowing tasks from scratch. I feel like Alba won't enter it, but then again, I'm not positive about that. I'd be interested to see where you take this. Overall, it was an interesting first chapter, and you have some strong characters in the making. Well done!

-lllb

Author's Response: Haha! I love that too, and I kinda always identified as the 'not pretty one' when I was in grade school, so I like it too. +]

Well, my familiarity with CP comes from my cousin, who is very many things other than the disease, for sure. She's had a lot of dreams and done a lot of things people never imagined she would, and she never looked back. It took her a long time to even realize there was something different about her than other girls, and I guess admire her for that. While Alba is much different than my cousin, I would definitely say that's where the character's strength comes from. +] The whole "disability poetics" thing sounds great!

I got a beta! So hopefully I'll get all those little things squared away, and avoid them entirely in the chapters to come.

I have spent many a night laboring the hows and whys and whos of the Triwizard Tournament, and I'm still not sure if I can do it. Haha!

Thank you so much for this lovely review! Hopefully you'll have the time to stop by again and see how things go.


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Review #40, by long_live_luna_bellatrixSo Easy To Love: Chapter 2

19th March 2015:
Hi, I'm here again, reviewing for the HPFF fundraiser.

I really like the direction you're taking this in. I was not expecting this scene in the orphanage at all, and I love being surprised in fan fiction. Too often the same old story lines are recycled. But you're clearly doing something completely new. I love how Harry and Ginny teamed up to help the kids in the orphanage, and how it even managed to bring them closer together. I really feel for them.

I'm hoping to see more of Sirius and Remus, just because I'm not used to seeing them around after Harry's teen years, and I'm sure their relationship with him is great.

Also, I'm interested to see the direction Harry and Ginny's relationship takes. I know the story is titled "So Easy to Love", but all stories need conflict, right? You've demonstrated here that the conflict can come from outside of the relationship, but it seems almost too simple to think that Harry and Ginny will get together without a hitch. After all, she has a fiery Weasley temper, and he's got a temper to match! Then again, maybe you'll prove me wrong. ;)

I like where you've taken this quite a bit!

-lllb

Author's Response: Hi sorry I haven't responded before now, I don't post on this site much. I hope all your questions were answered by the end of the story.

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Review #41, by long_live_luna_bellatrixA Weasley Vacation: Meet the Weasley's!

19th March 2015:
Hi! I'm here to review for the HPFF fundraiser.

This was an amusing start to a story. I like Hugo's voice, and how he interacts with his cousins. It seems pretty realistic to me. Also, Arthur insisting on a Muggle-style vacation?! Priceless. I can only assume hilarity will ensue.

A few technical things: "Weasley's" shouldn't have an apostrophe; it can just be "Weasleys." Also, why does James refer to Rose and Dom as his nieces? Aren't they his cousins? There are also a couple typos here and there, mainly letters missing from words. I'd suggest giving it a hard read-through, just to look out for those.

I love the fact that all the random family friends are getting dragged along (but wait, what about Teddy?). And it's neat that you made up a third Scamander child, I think that's a nice touch. And possible the source of some romance to come?

All in all, a nice first chapter. Good luck with this story!

-lllb

Author's Response: Thank you so much for your review, I love to improve myself!

I do not doubt that I indeed made several typo's and I apologize for that. English is not my first language and though I consider myself pretty decent at it, typo's were inevitable for me in my writing. However, I will use your advice and edit the spelling mistakes you mentioned!

Thanks again for your review, and I encourage you to read the rest of the chapters if you haven't already! It's your choice, but I'd love to hear what you think about the other chapters in a review :) But thanks regardless.

P.S. Teddy came along with the Weasleys actually, and he plays a big part in this story :)


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Review #42, by long_live_luna_bellatrixSo Easy To Love: So Easy To Love

18th March 2015:
Hi, I'm stopping by to review for the HPFF fundraiser.

This story definitely intrigued me from the start; at first I thought to myself all right, Harry and Ginny both end up in this bar, maybe they reconnect after having not seen each other in awhile, and fall in love. But all the differences from the books caught my attention, in a good way. Why did Harry not go to Hogwarts? And if he really didn't, how did he still save the world? How is Sirius still alive? I had all these questions, and I actually checked to see if this was a sequel to something, and I had missed a long backstory. But it appears I haven't. I hope everything is explained in later chapters!

Overall, it was well written. Harry and Ginny's interactions were believable, and I liked how the Harpies were all partiers, except Ginny. It's so interesting to think that even if Harry and Ginny hadn't met at Hogwarts, that they still would have fallen in love.

The mentions of Tonks and Lee Jordan were well done, as well. All in all, after reading this first chapter, I am most interested to hear about the story that came before it, and little less interested in the story of Ginny and Harry. I think that's just a result of having all these new things, and Harry and Ginny become almost old news. But keep it up! I'll try and check back for the later chapters if I have a moment.

-lllb

Author's Response: So sorry this has taken me long to respond to, i hope your questions were answered to your satisfaction, and that you enjoyed the rest of the story xx

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Review #43, by long_live_luna_bellatrixChasing my dreams.: Chasing my Dreams

18th March 2015:
Hi, I'm stopping by to review for the HPFF fundraiser.

I've never seen a story quite like this, and it's really cool (also weird, because have also been considering writing a story about wizards and Muggles overlapping). I love how your character thinks that math is magical; I'm not one for numbers, but I can definitely see how someone might think that. It makes perfect sense. I wonder if your character took Arithmancy at Hogwarts? Isn't that a class that has to do with magical math?

I think I was a little confused at the beginning, because it sounded like the narrator was still young, new to Hogwarts, but then later on it becomes clear that she's older. I wonder if there's any way you could clarify that? Even just saying, "Looking back to my first days at Hogwarts, I was so different then..." or something of that sort. Also, there was this sentence, in the first paragraph: "The first few days I passed I awe." I think that should say "in awe"?

Overall, an interesting take on a Muggleborn at Hogwarts. I think you could definitely expand this if you wanted to– to talk about Arithmancy, perhaps. Or talk more about what her life would be like if she were a mathematician. Sure, she wouldn't have a magical job, but there could still be magic in her home, right? Just a few things to think about. But all in all, an enjoyable read!

-lllb

Author's Response: Thank you so much for the review! I have at least one! I'll certainly keep your suggestions in mind. Thanks for pointing out those mistakes, I 'll edit them , right away.
Yes, Arithmancy has to do with magical maths, but not enough to take up mathematics as a profession. Just as you said, it has to do with 'magical' math.


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Review #44, by long_live_luna_bellatrixWhy am I friends with you?: Prologue

18th March 2015:
Hi, I'm swinging by to review for the HPFF fundraiser.

I think this was a good start to a story, but I'm eager to see more detail. For instance, everything that happens here seems like a baseline, and there's so much more that we could see. Everyone knows that at some point Seamus and Dean got on their first train to Hogwarts, and that eventually they become friends. And we don't learn that much more than that in this chapter. I'd love to see them getting to know each other a bit more, talking about their families, or have Seamus start explaining Quidditch, or something. Anything that might surprise the reader. It was amusing to see other familiar faces (although in the books, Luna is a year younger than Harry & co., by the way) but we also didn't get to hear much from them. I liked how stern Hermione was, though.

I liked how you've set up Dean as the quieter one, and Seamus as a little more aggressive; it's good to differentiate characters. However, it was a little distracting the way Seamus had an "Oi" at the beginning of many statements, and a "mate" at the end. Most people don't talk like that. I think just one "oi" for this chapter would have been fine, and also just a single "mate".

Overally, this was an interesting start to a story, and it's nice to see you focusing on Seamus and Dean, but I'd definitely love to see more detail. Good luck with this!

-lllb

Author's Response: Thank you, I'll definitely try and put that into practice when I write the next chapter!

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Review #45, by long_live_luna_bellatrixHistorically Accurate : The First.

18th March 2015:
Hi there! I'm stopping by to review for the HPFF Fundraiser.

This was a neat start to a story. I think you some strong ideas and some strong characters in the making. For instance, it's really cool that your main character is a History of Magic nut. There's something you don't see everyday! But it makes sense, because even if Binns is known to be the most boring professor on the face of the Earth, the subject itself must be fascinating. I would caution, however, that when your main character is a diehard fan of one subject, it becomes less enjoyable when other character pop up as massive fans of another subject. For instance, I like that Clio is a fan of history; I was nervous that Viv was obsessed with Herbology. I feel like most teenagers tend to be decent at two or three subjects, and only a few are ever fanatics for a single one. Already having two characters who identify extremely strongly with a single subject stands out as a little unrealistic to me. I'd rather see all the focus on Clio, and have her friends display different defining characteristics. (I suppose this is just a general thing you might want to keep in mind in the future, and it's not a massive issue at all, I just figured I'd point it out)

I'm curious to hear about the competition that Clio and Al will enter; I also like the idea, because it breaks away from the mold of "girl tutors guy, they fall in love" a little. I'd hope to see lots of interesting, original wizarding history in there, courtesy of Clio.

One small mechanical thing– when you have lines like this, “ 'Yes, thank you for that reminder!' He snapped" you don't need to capitalize the "he". It should remain lower case. There are lots of helpful lists in the Writing Resources section of the forums regarding dialogue formatting, as well as pretty much anything else you'd need to know about writing rules. But overall everything else was grammatically and mechanically sound.

Lastly, I really liked the tidbit about the troll clubs in the library! Those tiny, vibrant details are often what turn good stories into great ones, in my opinion. And that was a hilarious detail! Definitely keep those up.

Overall, an interesting first chapter. Good luck with this story!

-lllb

Author's Response: Hello!

Thank you so much for this review!

Yes, I totally understand what you mean. I probably just didn't think that through enough, haha! Though later on in the story, the differences as to why they're fanatics for their respective subjects will hopefully make it a bit more realistic!

Yes, I have grand plans for the Tournament! And of course - there'll be a few historical facts sprinkled in here and there (some canon by J.K. Rowling and other's my own headcanons though I try to make them seem realistic for the HP world).

And ah, thank you for the correction (I'll admit grammar is not my strong point, haha)! I'll go back through the story and edit in changes :)

Again, wow! Thank you so much for this lovely review, I really enjoyed hearing your opinions!

Thank you!

- Anni :)


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Review #46, by long_live_luna_bellatrixThe Orphan's Carol: The Orphan's Carol

18th March 2015:
Hi, I'm here to review for the HPFF fundraiser!

This was a really interesting story. I appreciated the way you left the main character's identity ambiguous for while (all right, so I didn't look at the story's list of characters before I read it, but even if I had, I wouldn't have been certain it was Tom). I really felt for him, having to save up his own money just so that he'd have a present to open on Christmas Day, and all this before I realized it was Tom. And your choice of including Merlin, and the collar Tom had wanted for Merlin, really helped my sympathize with Riddle. Even bad guys can have cute puppies, right?

One small mechanical thing: when you have this line, " 'Only good boys get presents, Master Riddle.' The Dean told him," there should be a comma there, instead of a period, and the 'the' doesn't need to be capitalized.

All in all, I liked how you set this in canon, and mentioned the incident of the rabbit and Milly, but then put your own take on a Tom Riddle Christmas. It's a relatively short story, but I think it works that way. You managed to set Tom apart from the other children not only with the coal vs. dolls and book, or with him being sent to his room while everyone else remained downstairs, but also with his collar idea. Even as a young boy, he was thinking in terms of a bigger picture than the other kids. Well done!

I'm glad I got the chance to read this!

-lllb

Author's Response: Hi!

Thanks so much for the review!

I took the interpretation of an inter-war orphanage from what I've read of Dickens - one of my English teachers was obsessed with him so it sort of rubbed off on me! And that's why Tom has to buy his own present and everything.

Oh, even bad guys have to have something worth living for, don't they?

And thanks for pointing out that grammar :) I'll go back and edit this when I have some time and be sure to correct it. :)

You know, I was so nervous about mentioning Milly and the rabbit because I didn't actually go back and read the relevant bits of the books before writing this up.

Oh, the idea was definitely to set Tom apart from the other kids, not just with magic vs muggle, but at the same time making Tom keep with what we know of the adult Voldemort but also make him a kid was surprisingly difficult, hence the inclusion of Merlin.

I'm so happy you enjoyed reading this :)

Celi xxx


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Review #47, by long_live_luna_bellatrixGoodbye Moon: Goodbye Moon

17th March 2015:
Hi, I'm here to review for the HPFF fundraiser.

This was short but sweet, and I definitely enjoyed it. I think you did a good job of capturing the fighting nature of both Tonks and Lupin, as well as the difficult choices that were almost the center piece of their relationship. Everything was like a tug-of-war, with him not feeling good enough for her, but Tonks wanting to be with him anyway, to him insisting on fighting while she stayed, to her following him... In very few words, you managed to encompass all of that. Part of me likes it the way it is now, short and to the point, but another part of me wonders if there are things you could add to it. More or Tonks' thoughts– does she fear death? Worry about her husband? Worry about her baby? If you ever want to revisit this, I'm sure you could find things to add.

It's interesting, your summary says this is a tribute to their love, but to me it's more of an image of them on the night of the battle. In my mind, a tribute would be more of a survey of their history, hitting the highlights of the relationship, if you will (personally, I like what you've done with it much more than that, though).

All in all, this was a touching little piece. I'm sure you could do more with it if you wanted, but at the moment, it works very well as it is. Keep it up!

-lllb

Author's Response: LLLB,

I think you are right - this story has more potential! I would like to revise it when I feel more comfortable with my writing.

I am glad that you enjoyed the story. Tonks was always such an interesting character to me. She is strong, smart, and independent. And falling in love doesn't compromise those qualities for her. She is willing to follow her heart and love a man who is difficult to love. In her eyes she isn't really sacrificing anything by being with Lupin.

Thank you for your review! I am looking forward to developing this, and other stories, more!

XX


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Review #48, by long_live_luna_bellatrixA DIFFERENT INTRODUCTION: Chapter One: A Special Request

17th March 2015:
HI there. I'm stopping by to review for the HPFF fundraiser.

I have to say, I am really hooked. It never occurred to me that Harry's life might have taken a different turn if someone as kind and loyal as McGonagall was his introduction to the wizarding world. And you've convinced me that it's a situation worth looking into. The writing here was solid; I feel like I have a good grasp on your McGonagall, and I completely understand her reasoning. I like the idea that she's been meaning to go see Harry for awhile, but some behind the scenes work on Albus's part has prevented her from doing so. I also really like the idea of her relationship with Septima Vector.

All in all, this was a lovely first chapter. My interest is piqued, and I can't wait to see what Septima's report inspires in McGonagall! The fury of Minerva isn't to be underestimated, after all. Then again, she clearly has no idea of Dumbledore's plan to literally protect Harry with the bloodline of his mother, so it will be interesting to see how that turns out.

Best of luck with this, and I'll be looking out for future chapters!

-lllb

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Review #49, by long_live_luna_bellatrixSitting Here in Front of Me: The Not So Prestigious Event Of Hogwarts

17th March 2015:
Hi! I'm here to review for the HPFF fundraiser.

Interesting start to a story, here. I like how you've added in Fred's drama to the already canon disaster of Harry, Ron, and Hermione's evenings. I'm always interested to read stories that pair Hermione with a Weasley other than Ron, because given how much time she spends with that family, and how grumpy and immature Ron is for much of the books (I still love him, of course!) I can easily imagine her falling for a different Weasley boy.

One thing that could me off guard was how blatantly you described Fred as "checking out" Hermione. Given that he was just publicly dumped, I would imagine him to be a little focused on his current woes than actively searching for other girls. I think it might be more natural for something along the lines of Fred noticing how beautiful Hermione looked in her dress to happen. This does an equally good, if not more subtle, job of letting us know that the story will focus on their relationship; it also puts Fred in a better light.

Some brief dialogue tips: (there are definitely more in depth threads in the Writers Resources section of the forum, that's where I learned how to properly format dialogue!) First, punctuation: you always need punctuation at the end of dialogue, and it always goes inside the quotation marks. If the dialogue precedes something like 'said Harry,' then you never use a period– always a comma, question mark, or exclamation point. (For example: "How are you doing?" asked Harry. "I'm fine," said Fred.) You only use a period when you're not attaching some 'Harry said' or 'Hermione pleaded' after it. (For example: "I'm tired, I'm going to go to bed. Night, guys." Hermione turned and retreated up to her dormitory). This brings me to the other part: capitalization. There's no need to capitalize the "said" or "asked" or any other verbs used to portray people talking (see my example with the punctuation). Those can remain lower case.

Over all, though, I like the way you've introduced the characters, and the relationship they have. I enjoyed how you described Fred and George being more than brothers, more than friends, but truly compatible and understanding. I can wholeheartedly understand that. Furthermore, I like how you've portrayed Hermione and Ginny as friends; so many people act as if Ron and Harry are the only people Hermione ever spoke to at Hogwarts! But it did really seem, in the books, that by the end she and Ginny were close. So that was a nice touch.

Good start to this one, although I'd definitely suggest you take a second look at some of the dialogue mechanics. Good luck!

-lllb

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Review #50, by long_live_luna_bellatrixMeissa: Prologue

12th March 2014:
Wow, what a chilling first chapter. You set the mood and the tone instantly, without any room for doubt. And it's clearly not just the Dark Lord (I can infer that it is THAT lord, right?) and some Death Eater; that twist about the mark is fascinating, and a clever idea. Plus, very much something I can see happening.

One typo, maybe? The girl says "One who bares the mark," but I think it should be "One who bears the mark." Just a small thing.

I'd love to see more description at the beginning, to really cement the mood the story. I'd love to know more about the cottage's surroundings, not just what they looked like, but what they felt, smelled, even tasted like. And perhaps a bit of an insight into the girl's emotions as she approaches. Nervous? Resigned? Excited? Dread? Desperate? There are so many possibilities, then again, I'm sure there are time to develop those later.

At first I thought the character was Bellatrix-- no fear or sympathy to be seen, just unfailing loyalty. But after the twist with the mark, I don't think it's her at all. It was a good move to keep her identity a mystery for now... You have the reader interested, and he/she can move on to the smaller details later, as things flesh out.

On the whole, a great start. In relatively few words you introduced suspense, interesting characters, and a really neat concept with the mark. Congrats on your first NaNo, as well!

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