Reading Reviews From Member: Debra20
341 Reviews Found

Review #26, by Debra20Detox: Sobering Up

28th July 2013:
Hey Dan! First of all, I know I haven't yet finished COB, but answering the questions asked by someone of the forums about Draco and how his life after the war was, really got me in the mood to read something about him. And then Detox came to mind. Again, I have heard a lot of positive feedback about this story, especially since it features a character that can be easily mishandled these days.

I'd like to start by saying that even if the first chapters of COB are amazing, there is a definite improvement in your prose. I'm not exactly a literary critic, so I don't know if I'll be able to express what I felt and thought while reading this chapter properly, but this first chapter was a great kick off for Draco's redemption process.

The whole scene with him drinking his life away was very poignant. I think description is definitely the aspect you've grown most at. His struggle to exit the bar, the state of low existence he has reached was greatly enhanced by your mind blowing descriptive skills! It really made me pity him, because I never thought as ill of him as of his father. I mean, during school Draco was still a teen. That's not an excuse for his behaviour, of course, but in a way this happens in real life as well. Kids don't really measure the consequences of their acts, and if a life filled of bigotry is all he's known, you can't blame him for acting on the basis of the education he's received. Lucius on the other hand, was an adult, fully capable of measuring the consequences of what he did and he consciously chose to be what he was.

Astoria has already made me root for her. I can imagine there will be a lot of struggle before they will be able to be happy together, because Draco has a lot to atone for and changing people's views on you isn't always an easy thing to achieve. But if she stands by his side, I am sure it's possible. Can't wait to see how Draco's new-found determination will influence his further decisions!

Author's Response: Hi! Don't sweat the order or timing of reviews. I'm always just happy to hear from you! :hugs:

You have no idea how happy your first critique made me. I mean, **I** like to think that I'm improving, but to hear it from another person... Gah! Thank you! It's been ages since the start of CoB, and I've definitely learned some things since then.

Maybe part of the difference in descriptiveness with the first chapter of this story is that I've had a lot more experience stumbling out of bars than having out-of-body experiences in King's Cross Station. ;) He's definitely at or near rock bottom at the start of this. I'm glad that I'm not the only one who sees a big difference between Draco and Lucius. Lucius should have known better, especially after the first war. Moreover, he should have taught his son better. I don't see Draco as completely innocent, but he's undeniably a product of his environment.

Astoria is a bit white-washed in this first chapter because you're seeing her through Draco's eyes. To him, she's sort of an angel of mercy who's descended into his gutter of misery to show him the way out. One thing that I try to do later in the story is balance her character out, considering that whatever else she might be, she's also a 16-year-old girl who has a lot of growing up to do still.

I'm really glad that you enjoyed the first chapter! The story has been a lot more challenging to write than CoB. Thanks for reading and reviewing!

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Review #27, by Debra20At Great Personal Risk: Natural Talents

18th July 2013:
Things are moving forward. We finally see Lily and Severus in classes and I was greatly pleased to see that she was that talented at Charms. If I remember correctly, Lily had been good at it in the books as well. And of course Snape with Potions.

I can't shake off the weird feeling I have seeing their roles reversed. Severus being surrounded by a group of of people cheering him on and not trying to hex him makes for a strange image. However, it's an amazing way to read the story through both their eyes. As I am fond of "what if's", this has always been a big interest for me: what if it had been different? What if Lily had been the one to fall in love with Snape? What if Severus had been left in peace by the Marauders? It's a great opportunity to put ourselves in their placed and feel the story even deeper.

On the other hand, we know it didn't happen like this and it's disheartening to see Lily's struggles to fit in, knowing that in fact they were Snape's. I honestly love him so much as a character, with all his goods and bads, that it pains me to witness his hurt, more-so through the eyes of Lily. I'm very eager to see how they both develop, both as individuals and as a relationship!

Author's Response: Yeah, I kept the talents canon. It's hard for me to picture a universe where Lily isn't skilled at Charms and Severus isn't a master potioneer :)

It is bizarre for him to be accepted, huh? I agree that it can be fun to explore the "what ifs," and that's half the beauty of writing AU. Sometimes I have to force myself away from canon and really let my imagination run wild.

Trust me, it hurt my feelings to hurt Lily like this. I love her and see her as so innocent and good-hearted, and so this portrayal was truly a challenge. I guess being able to give Snape a decent life balanced it out for me, though.

I'm so glad you're enjoying the story so far, and I do hope to hear from you again soon! Thanks for your fantastic review!


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Review #28, by Debra20At Great Personal Risk: The First Years' First Test

18th July 2013:
Oh my this is sooo weird right now. Not 'bad' weird, just, strange. It's a queer feeling seeing the kids sorted in different Houses, which also makes me wonder how the story will go on from here. We've seen in the books that how the students are sorted have a pretty heavy influence on how they're going to be, what deeds they will do, etc. So I can't stop but think what's in store for Lily especially, since she's been sorted into Hufflepuff. I was genuinely surprised she ended up there because I'd have thought she would be put in any House, except that. From her personality in your story, I can see she's a feisty, fiery girl who keeps to herself most of the time, and Hufflepuff have always given me the complete impression. I'll definitely keep a lookout for the way her story develops!

I'm very intrigued by the development of this story and it's two major characters. I think having changed their background, their personalities, feelings will have a dramatic effect on how they play their part in the events that are bound to happen. Usually it takes only a little to change the future of a man, but having everything this different is a completely different story. At this moment the story raises more questions than offers answers, but I can completely live with it haha They motivate me to keep reading, dig for the answers myself. This is truly a gem. I've never read anything like it!

Author's Response: Haha, yeah, it probably is very weird to behold. I mostly put Lily in Hufflepuff because it was the unexpected choice and I wanted to be clear that all kinds of people can come from all kinds of Houses, but I also see her as an intensely loyal girl, which will become apparent as the story goes on.

I'm happy you're motivated to read on and try to find the answers to all of your questions! I'm not thrilled with the pacing of this one, because it was written before I really learned to slow down and take my time with a plot, but hopefully you enjoy seeing Lily and Severus in very unconventional roles here.

Thanks for another sweet review :)


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Review #29, by Debra20At Great Personal Risk: A Little Bit of Chemistry

18th July 2013:
OMG everything change after I read your A/N! When I thought there couldn't be anything else that could surprise me about you, you come up with this brilliant idea. It all makes so much sense now. Lily's parents arguing (who were supposed to be Snape's), her coming from a family of wizards (when it was him who was the Half Blood) and all the other elements. It's one of the most creative ideas I've ever read in fanfiction.

And now my mind is blown twice because of how well you're handling the plot. Even if we're not that far into the story yet, it must be difficult keeping track of everything, be attentive not to fall into proper canon. Both Snape and Lily seem very in character, despite their personalities switched. It's a queer thing seeing Severus this...cheerful? But it fits the theme of the story so well that you can't help but love him as you love sullen Snape (am I weird or what? LOL)

And they've met! I'm at the point of wondering if you've changed their feelings as well? Because we know that Snape was the one to love Lily in a romantic way, while Lily only cherished him as a very god friend, a brother. Will we see Lily actually loving him in this story? I'm incredibly eager to find this out. You have no idea how much this story has caught me :D

Author's Response: This idea was inspired by a challenge, and while mine ended up being the only finished entry, I still loved being able to just run with the notion of switched personalities and non-canon ideas. But yeah, it's not a perfect switch; some things remain the same, some change to their opposite, and some are kind of in the middle or just plain new altogether.

It was really weird writing Snape as a happy person, as sad as that is to say. Of course, it was also strange to write Lily as being so bitterly unhappy, but for some reason that came a lot more easily to me. Must be the angst.

Well, I won't answer that question--I'm afraid you'll have to read on, and I hope you do!

Thanks for another lovely review :)


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Review #30, by Debra20At Great Personal Risk: Two Owls

18th July 2013:
Hey Amanda! So as we got the challenge of reviewing stories about our ultimate OTP, I immediately thought about Snily because I love them best. After that, I started wondering what could be the 'mother' of Snily stories on the Archives and I thought about you, because I know you enjoy it too. So here I am :D

First of let me tell you that even if this story is from 2011 and without a doubt your writing style has changed and improved with the practice of writing, I still can't get over how much I love your descriptions. They're amazingly vivid and the scenes they portray play in my mind just like a movie, which has always been very important to me. To be able to fully immerse myself in the story, I need to visualise everything that's happening and you're giving me so much more than that!

I am simply amazed by the amount of detail you put into describing the process of sending the Hogwarts letters. This introduction really gives a lot of depth to the story because it makes us feel that both Snape and Lily were amongst the important ones who would be the first receiving their letters by owl. What I'm not certain about (and I might be wrong) is concerned with Lily's family. Wasn't she part of a Muggle family? Did you choose to portray her as the daughter of magical people for a purpose?

Severus! Love of my life! I am so happy you decided to have him share a good relationship with his parents. I know there are indications in the canon books that might lead us to believe that there were conflicts between his parents, but it's never confirmed and I've read too many stories with him being the son of an abusive father and whatnot. Also, it's been a true pleasure reading that his mother was so talented at Potions. I don't recall if it's canon, but it sets the ground to Snape's decision to name himself the Half Blood Prince, of all the names he could have chosen. It warmed my heart to imagine all the wonderful moments this family has lived until Severus had to go away for school.

I am eager to read on, see what happens next! On to the next chapter I say :D

Author's Response: Haha, thanks! I'm super flattered that your search for Snily brought you to my page. Maybe one day I'll write the actual "mother of all Snily stories," though that would be a challenge indeed! I do like this odd little story, though, so it makes me smile that you chose it to review :)

I'm happy the imagery worked here! I relied heavily upon it while trying to start us off with the owls' journey and the introduction of Lily and Severus's respective home lives. I would certainly hope my skills have improved in two years' time, of course!

I thought it was interesting to imagine what the letter process would be like. We know that magical students are recorded in a book and their letters come when they turn eleven, but we don't know much more than that, and so I took my turn at describing the process here.

Ah, yes, I definitely should have put my disclaimer in this chapter instead of the next. Sometimes we writers forget that readers don't automatically see things the way we do, since we have the answers and they don't. I'll have to go back and fix that if I ever go back and edit this (which I'm sure needs to be done).

Anyway, yes, in this AU certain things are switched around, and the families of our protagonists are one of them. Lily's got cruel magical parents and Severus has the happy family I wish he would have had in canon.

You know, I've been writing Snape-centric stuff for so long that I really don't know if Snape getting his potions book from his mother is real canon or just my head canon. Either way, him being close to Eileen is a big part of my head canon and I find it hard to write them otherwise. Both being magical, surely they would have stuck together in the face of whatever happened with his father, and I think him taking her name as a nickname was a bit of a tribute to that (as opposed to a mere comment on blood status).

Thanks for your very sweet review, Debra!


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Review #31, by Debra20Freshly Mown Grass: Freshly Mown Grass

17th July 2013:
Ditto, the Weasleys were made for you WTM! I don't think there is anyone else on these forums, Archives, or in fact any other HPPF fanfiction site that could possibly write them better than you. Your characterisation glues me to the screen with my mouth open...literally...

This was a very sweet piece. Witnessing Hermione's feelings for Ron gives me a fuzzy feeling inside my heart. I've always loved them together (thought have been completely oblivious that they fancied each other in the books, until way past GoF *shame*) but having read the books from Harry's perspective, who was already full of hormones and confused about love, I never really got the chance to enjoy them. So thank you for this wonderful piece of fluff! It made my night a lot better :D

Author's Response: Aww thank you so much! I do love my Weasleys. I suppose that's obvious when virtually all of my stories are about them ;)

Hermione lusting after Ron makes me giggle. I do love those two. I totally shipped them in the books, but I came to the fandom late so I was able to read the first 5 books all at once and saw the Harry/Ginny and Ron/Hermione emerging. Harry is definitely always confused by girls and their feelings. Not surprising when you consider how he grew up, I suppose.

Thank you very much for the review! :D

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Review #32, by Debra20The Unsinkable Molly Prewett: I'm Into Something Good

17th July 2013:
Here I am with another reivew! I hope I'm not boring you with my repeated presence, but I can't help it if this story is so's your fault! :P

So I was just thinking that I've never really made any real comments about the OC's you've created. I've always thought writing OC's is a lot more difficult than writing already established characters, because you have to find a voice of their own, give them personalities that are realistic, etc. A great deal of things that don't always come so easily. And I wanted to say that yours are very well created. Each of the girls and the boys have a distinct voice, which I personally think is VERY hard to achieve. It's one thing to create one or two MC's, but several supporting characters with voices of their own, faults, desires, etc, is not easy feat. You've risen up to the task extraordinarily. I am eager to see what role each of them play in the development in Arthur and Molly's story and the War that's forever looming closer to them!

Author's Response: Absolutely not boring me at all! I love your reviews, they really make me smile.

I do love to create an original character. Making Molly and Arthur's circles of friends at school was a lot of fun. Large supporting casts can be difficult to juggle with screen-time, but I think it's worth it. Each member of their circle has a different part to play in the formation of their relationship, Molly's friends in particular. Thank you very much for the review! :)

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Review #33, by Debra20The Unsinkable Molly Prewett: Brown-Eyed Girl

17th July 2013:
Aww WTM, your story always makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside. I honestly couldn't stop grinning all the way through.

As far as pairings go in the HP world, Molly and Arthur together with Ron and Hermione are my favourites. It almost feels like they belong together, like they were born together. And your amazing skill at characterisation captures their essence with startling accuracy. I know I've said this before, but I will say it again (risking to sound like a broken record): you are fabulous at characterisation. It almost feels like the same characters jumped from JK's book to come and play their younger selves in your story. You know them inside out: what they would think in different situations, how they would react, mannerisms, speech patterns, everything. I will never stop feeling astounded at how real they feel!

Ok, so does it seem silly to say that I am looking forward to their date as well? :P I'm so excited to see Molly finally warming up to Arthur, that I almost feel like it's me who's going to go out with him haha I feel butterlflies in my stomach for her! Can't wait to see what happens next for them!

Author's Response: I adore Molly/Arthur and Ron/Hermione. Those are my top two ships in the HP world. They definitely belong together! I really tried to get into Molly and Arthur's heads for this story, so thank you so much for your kind words on their characterization. *blushes* I really love these characters, so that does make my job easier writing them.

Ah butterflies! Young love. So sweet. Thank you for the lovely review!

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Review #34, by Debra20The Mysterious Case of the Twin Wands: XI. Drunken Minds

17th July 2013:
OMG Ral this was so sweet! I loved reading every line of this chapter. Finally both Rose and Scorpius had a moment of respire from all the stress and panic their life was shrouded in at the moment. As for them being OOC, take your mind off that because I felt they were very much IC (as much as they can be since they're practically OC's haha). Nothing felt out of place. They have enough background to at least spark a bit of interest in each other and the scenes they spent together were very realistic and sweet. I grinned all the way through :D

I think my favourite moment was their vocal 'love making', so to say. I am talking about when they confessed stuff to each other: how they were, what they yearned for, their faults. Nothing exposes you more to someone else than confessing your fears to them. To me, that was the most poignant scene of this chapter. Having them confess intimate feelings to each other served to unify them more than anything else. It was a real pleasure reading that and I am proud of them. Especially Scorpius, who started this story as a very stuck up person who deeply doubted himself because of the weight his family's name carried in the wizarding world.

Everyone wishes they could live a love story like the one that's being born between the two, and I am no exception. A love story based on honesty, recognition and respect. So you can imagine how in love I am with the two for acting as two responsible adults, while still allowing themselves to be teenagers in the way they express their affections :D

Author's Response: "Vocal love making"! I love that! Hahaha!

As for Scorpius, he is actually a mix of traits from all my male friends. I have no idea how to be a guy, obviously, so I just imagined what they would do or say or something.

Then the fluffy part was actually just all me, cause I love fluff and these kinds of talks!

Thank you so much for the review! Love you! *hugs*

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Review #35, by Debra20The Mysterious Case of the Twin Wands: X. Revelations

17th July 2013:
Really Ral, where did you keep this talent hidden until now? Well not hidden because it's not the first time I've read something of yours, but every time I come abck to this story I fall in love with it all over again.

So! Lot's of things happened in this chapter. The plot thickens as we find out that the Peverell Society is not the only acting secret organisation. The Order of the Phoenix as been reformed, which makes me grin like a mad woman haha I LOVED the OotP in the books (both the original, which we know so few about, and the second) and it's always a pleasant surprise to discover that ff writers revive it for different purposes. It's been amazing seeing some of the older characters (Bill, Fleur, Luna) and having them all together in the room, working on solving this mystery just like old times, has been the topping of the cake.

I am always in awe at your skills for keeping this wands plot going forward. You must have thousands of notes haha How long did it take you to put together everything? Because it's scale is epic! Not to mention the creativity behind it. Wands has always been a boring topic to me in the books, but you gave them a twist and made them interesting! I almost wish I was like Rose, studying wandlore :P

Author's Response: I wish I was studying wandlore! Ha! :D

Aww, you're making me blush!

When I started writing this, I had a whole different outline for it. But then things changed and they evolved and this here is what happened! And I don't have thousands of notes, but I do have a notebook full of scribbled bits and pieces and ideas that never made it into the story! Maybe in the sequel!

The idea for this came from reading about the Elder Wand in "Tales of Beedle the Bard" but I also wanted to incorporate the whole "elite team of mercenaries" idea in it! So that worked out great!

Thank you for the review and for all the support and feedback!

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Review #36, by Debra20The Snow is Silent: The Snow is Silent

17th July 2013:
Ah Susan you are the master of description. You are SO talented with description you could write a story of 2000 words only describing a scene, a character's feelings, looks, smells, tastes. There are only two authors on this site whose descriptions simply blow my mind away, and you are one of them. When I read stories like this on your account, I feel like I'm reading Russian literature; difficult but endearing, with layers upon layers to the story, scenes and happenings naked to the eye. Because it's plain that you've put a lot of thought behind the plot of this story and only showed us a small part. What's unfolding behind the scenes is like the part of the iceberg under the water.

This piece is worthy of Dumbledore beyond a doubt. There is something about his musings that's so full of sadness and regret, it makes my heart heavy with sorrow for him. I never really realised it before but he was as much of a tormented soul as Snape has been, living in the shadow of his mistakes, his young, foolish dreams. His mistakes cost him Ariana's life and a weight like that is enough to crumble even the strongest. I think you were very skilled in capturing his portrayal as he was sitting in front of her grave, snow falling all around him. Snow is a literature motif that reminds me of death, hopelessness, stillness. I know it's a sombre perspective, but despite my great love for winter, used like this creates an atmosphere of heaviness, of suffocation. It makes me want to reach out to Dumbledore and offer him something of consolation, but in cases like his, nothing said can ease one's self reproaches.

Simply brilliant my dear Susan. I always take so much pleasure from reading your stories and this one was no exception :D

Author's Response: Thank you very much, Debra! It's fantastic to hear from you, and even better to hear that you enjoyed this story. Eek! I can't get over your compliments. It means a lot that you like the descriptions in this story - you've tempted me to write more descriptions again and to post a challenge about description-writing. :D I used to do more, but I always worry that descriptions take away too much from the action. It doesn't take long for descriptions to add up to something worthy of a nineteenth-century novel, and sadly it's not a style that people seem to enjoy anymore.

But OMG you just compared the descriptions to Russian literature and now I REALLY don't know what to say. I love how you've described this story as a series of layers and an iceberg. It's far more than I expected from this story (while writing, the word count was foremost in my mind, so I don't know how much I actually thought about the pieces of the story). So much of it occurs in Dumbledore's mind and memory, revealing his selfishness and what it's lead him to, circling inward until he can finally put his guilt into words (not even his own words, which is an added layer).

Ugh, your reading of the snow is perfect. I thought of it as a blanket that covers Dumbledore's guilt, but it also represents the suffocation he felt while having to care for his siblings, and now for the stillness and heaviness of the empty house. There's so many things it stands for, making it a fantastic symbol to use, especially for a story that takes in many of these meanings.

Thank you again for reading and reviewing this story! I wish I could provide a better response, but I'm still too much in awe of your review. ^_^

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Review #37, by Debra20Year of the snake: The new arrival

17th July 2013:
Finally we see the first sparks of indignation burn inside Neville. He's one of the nicest, kindest characters in the books, and I think you were wise in choosing to have him convinced that he had to do something by witnessing the outrageous treatment students were getting. Knowing Neville, it won't be long before he will have had enough of it and decided to take matter in his own hands, regardless of the dangers of restarting DA and his own fears. He has proved in the past that he's capable of throwing aside his fears if it meant doing the right thing and helping others. This is not a different situation. It's a great feeling to see him transform little by little in your story. It makes his journey that more enjoyable. You can't help but root for him!

A character I haven't spoken about much is Ginny. While I was not always that convinced about her in the books, I must admit you are handling her very well. You can definitely see the Weasley in her :D She's passionate about her beliefs but cautious enough not to expose herself. She's not scared in taking up the task of reforming the DA, but she knows that there would be no one better than Neville and does not hesitate in letting him know it. I think you're doing a great job with her.

What can I say truly, other than you are a genius of characterisation ;) I need to take a leaf of your book without doubt :D

Author's Response: I love Neville in this, I really do. He's looking for the leadership that Harry used to provide, to rally people against these injustices (and NEville has a particular loathing for the Cruciatus Curse, as we all know), and it's coming slowly to him that, without Harry, HE will have to do that leadership. He's trying to palm it off on Ginny, but she recognises that he has that fire and she's pushing him. Really happy with how you're seeing that too. :)

cheers Mel

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Review #38, by Debra20Year of the snake: The Carrows

17th July 2013:
Hey there mel! I'm sorry it's taken me so long to come review your new chapters, but for a long while I've been busy with school and was secretly hoping that by the time I was done with that I'd have more than one chapter to read at once :D And my wait was well worth it!

I think I'm falling in love with this story more and more. Neville is a great character to read about, especially during this period in his life when he undergoes a massive change. It's going to be incredible to witness his journey from the frightened boy that is still waiting for help from the outside (Harry, for example), to the man of action who will take up the torch and shed some light in the moments of darkness at Hogwarts in that year. Together with Harry's evolution, I think Neville's growth throughout the series is one of the most prominent one. By DH I was already mad in love with his character. He's awesome, and you're awesome too for managing to capture his essence so well! He's still afraid, still waiting for others to step up to the unfair things happening at school, but there'll come a moment when he will do it himself. Can't wait!

I truly feel for Seamus here. Being singled out by the Carrows is not good news for him. I have a feeling things will only get worse from here on out, both for him and for other sin his situation. Which brings me to the Carrows' characterisation. Boy, they are SCARY! I'd be sweating as well if I had teachers like them. When Amycus used the Cruciatus curse on Seamus I literally jumped in my seat. I didn't expect that...not now and not so sudden. It was a brilliant move from your part, because I think the scene had the desired effect: to make us realise (and the Hogwarts students) that things are bad, like very bad!

Amazing chapter mel as always mel!

Author's Response: Ah, Roxi, I can't complain about late reviews on chapters when I'm taking three years or more to answer them, can I? I can only beg your forgiveness for being so tardy and hope you'll get around to reading it when I do finally get back to this story. (Hopefully by the en dof the year. But no promises, unfortunately.)

Yeah, not fun for Seamus, is it? But something had to (a) show the Carrows for what they are, and (b) prove his trustworthiness to Neville and Ginny. So this neatly fit both criteria, don't you think?

cheers Mel

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Review #39, by Debra20Flames of Calamity: Brave.

16th July 2013:
Hey! I'm here for the HC review-a-ton to leave some thoughts on this great entry from last year. I think you've done a marvellous job at including all the needed prompts. They blended in perfectly with the plot of the story.

Susan's characterisation was amazing. We could literally see her transforming throughout the one shot, from the frightened girl who refused to even face what was going on, choosing to hide in the dungeons, to this fierce fighter who would not allow anyone to hurt her or any of her friends again. It was brilliant to witness her forming determination. It made me feel strong as well (even if I haven't fought in the Battle of Hogwarts :P). You've really done a great job at writing an inspiring character :D

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Review #40, by Debra20One Word: One Word

16th July 2013:
Hey there! Ok, so this was a haunting story, at least for me. Knowing that you life can be resumed to one word, a word that can define what you are, what you've been doing with the time you had to spend on this earth is scary. It's a frightening perspective because we are more than just one word. Human life is much, much more than that.

I think you've captured Lily's essence very well in this small one shot. Her turmoil at having to break bonds with Severus was palpable in her desperate repeating of 'him'. She knew she could no longer continue with him as if nothing ever happened, not when he hurt her so deeply. He who has always been by her side, protecting and defending her against the world because he too was an outcast. This moment breaks my heart because I LOVE Snily in any shape and form (romantic or just as friends) and I can;t standing knowing that this was the beginning of their fall. A truly poignant story. Well done!

Author's Response: Hey Debra! Thanks for stopping by. It is a little terrifying because we're told how beautiful life is and that humans are such a crowning glory of some sort. When all that is stripped away and it's summed up by something so small as one word you start to ask what does it all mean? Which is where this story comes in. Writing Lily has never been easy for me. She's such an elusive character sometimes because there is so many unknowns in her life but this moment has always intrigued me. How a friendship like theirs (or more, whatever it was) could fall over something like that? Was it gradual? Was this the icing on the cake of a really long year or did this start their fall and through sixth year they destroyed. Whatever the case, it's hard to think that a friendship that has gone on as long could be torn apart and it drew me to try and write this moment which marks the change in who they were.

Thank you so much for your kind words!

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Review #41, by Debra20Monster: The secret side of me...

16th July 2013:
Hello again! So I couldn't resist when I realised you had a Peter one shot. It was too good a chance to miss because I crave for any story involving him, or any of the other incredibly interesting minor characters (Moody, Minerva, etc).

I am glad to say I was not disappointed. In fact, I don't think you could have made his characterisation closer to how I imagine Peter to be as well. He starts as the weaker in the group, reluctantly accepted into their midst, but becoming a full member with the passing of time. As we already know, Sirus, James and Remus quickly grew frond of Peter, but his own insecurities prevented him from seeing that. Imagining that he was only with them to serve as bait for their pranks was the first brick in the wall that built itself over time between himself and his friends. Doubt is a horrible thing. It's like a festering wound. Once you have it, you never get rid of it. If nothing, it feeds on your insecurities and grows bigger and stronger by the day. I think that's what happened with Peter. That tiny doubt became an avalanche, overwhelming his sense. Sad, but true and very real.

His characterisation was amazing. I could actually feel for him, because for a long time in my life I've been the underdog as well. He was cowardly yes, but I have learned my lesson no to judge without knowing and we don't know what made him take those dreadful decisions that led to all this horror happening. I am in no way finding excuses for him, but I do think we should think twice before pointing fingers.

Excellent missing moment. I truly enjoyed every moment of it. It gave me many feels!

Author's Response: As you can tell, I sometimes like to write stories about unlikable characters, and explore what makes them tick. I enjoy trying to find possible reasons behind why they act the way that they do.

I was so excited to get your reviews for these two stories, as they are several years old now and don't get much love. So thank you very very much for your wonderful reviews! I really enjoyed reading your thoughts about them, and greatly appreciate all of the kind things you had to say.

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Review #42, by Debra20Beyond Repair: Homecoming

16th July 2013:
Hey there! I'm here to offer my thoughts on this marvellous portrayal of Filch :)

You've done wonders with him if I'm to be honest. Filch was one of those characters I never thought I'd feel any compassion for (together with Umbridge...I still think she has no redeeming quality!) and yet here I am, mulling over your words and slowly warming up to him. It makes so much sense that in reality Filch was only a bitter old man, who had been shunned all his life for what he was, much like Remus (only because of different conditions). I felt really bad about him when his parents sent him away. Not having someone to support and soothe you when you're different than everyone else is one of the worst feelings in the world. Not being wanted, laughed at is terrible.

His characterisation has left me dumbfounded. He is SO in character it almost hurts. His love for the castle is so poignant and real that you can't help feeling some pity in his fate. Hogwarts was his home and seeing it destroyed like that in the War must have been pure horror. I think after reading this piece on him, my vision on his character will never be the same. I think you've given me a golden lesson today that I sometimes forget: never judge based on appearances. So thank you. Thank you for this amazing story!

Author's Response: Thanks for your review! I enjoyed trying to get into Filch's head and am glad that you liked what I did with the story. I wanted to explore what would possibly possess a squib like Filch to remain so ingrained in the wizarding world, even though he seems to hate it so much.

If I remember correctly, I originally wrote this for a challenge where you had to give your character a happy ending after the battle. So this is what I envisioned for Filch.

I really appreciate you taking the time to read this story and leave such a lovely review. Thanks again!

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Review #43, by Debra20The Power of Love: The Passion of a Thousand Suns

16th July 2013:
Sarah...I...can't...breathe!! This is the BEST parody/AU/cheesy love story gone wrong piece I have ever read. I cannot even being to describe to you how much I've laughed while reading it.

They're so OOC it's hilarious. And the plot of the story is SO BAD it's delicious! I sincerely came here expecting some angsty love story and instead found this. I had to read the first paragraph several times to convince myself that you were writing a parody and not anything else and I was shocked because it wasn't listed as a Humour story.

There are so many things I love about this story, I don't know where to begin. You took so many cliches (Cho cheating on Cedric with DRACO nonetheless, living happily ever after - if we don't count Bellatrix :P) and gave them your own twist, it's amazing to see what one can achieve if they set their mind to it. Not to mention how deftly you've inserted caricaturizations of the overly-used plots in romance stories: they get married, have babies (losing weight in a fortnight, pregnancy lasts like half the real time, etc). I am beyond impressed with your humour skill!

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Review #44, by Debra20Downward Spiral: Downward Spiral

16th July 2013:
Hey there Sarah! This is one of the one shots I've meant to review in ages but never got to do until today. So here I am!

I must confess that being in the process of writing my own story about the Seven Deadly Sins, I was drawn by this one shot from the moment I read the summary. I was curious to see how you envisioned 'sloth' and who would be the MC of this story. It couldn't have been anyone better than Dudley. Even in the HP books he was prone to becoming like this unless some drastic happened in his life. We saw some early signs of change during DH, but we never had the real chance to discover if his change would be long lasting and more profound. So it makes perfect sense that he would allow himself to become like this.

In terms of characterisation I have nothing but praise for you. Honestly, this is the best Dudley I have EVER read. Throughout the whole piece I felt like smacking him on the head for being such an obnoxious, useless man. Not only he never did ANYTHING, not even to ensure his own hygiene (I mean, come on! His wife had to trim his moustache?! That's sloth taken at its extreme), but he had the nerve to expect Emma to come back apologising for having left him alone so much time. He completely took her for granted! People like him disgust me and I am glad that she found her freedom. I'm not happy about his ending, but it was to be expected. He couldn't even go to the bathroom...not to mention his abnormal weight.

I am sincerely in love with this story! I'll add it to my favourites asap!

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Review #45, by Debra20Pansy's Lament: Pansy's Lament

14th July 2013:
Hey again! This was another amazing story, but so different than the last I read from you. Whereas that was witty and funny and sweet, this is sad, desperate and makes me feel uncomfortable. Why uncomfortable? Because I'm torn between empathy for Pansy, for the love she holds this mysterious person whose identity we don't know and the fact that she is slowly destroying herself by remaining in this clearly damaging relationship. Love is hard and makes us blind. There were moments when I felt like shaking her awake. So I say kudos to you for being able to portray her SO WELL. Everything about her was believable: her frantic thoughts, her clingy, obsessive feelings. It makes me wonder what will happen to her in truth if she remains at his side as his mistress. Will she ever have a proper life, a proper love? Or will she forever condemn herself to being lonely at his side, deluding herself that she loves him. Because that is definitely not love he feels. Love is never selfish.

Excellent story once again!

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Review #46, by Debra20Tête-à-Tête: Tête-à-Tête

14th July 2013:
Heya! Blaise and Hermione eh? Now that I've read this story I confess I'm intrigued by the pair. I would be curious to read more of them as they seem to fit (a lot more than Dramione in any case...)

I think you did a GREAT job at this! Excellent characterisation for Hermione and amazing fleshing out of Zabini's character. He's a minor one in the books so we don't have that much to go one and it's a real pleasure when I discover stories that handle minor characters so well! They dynamic was delicious to read! Deep down, I am a sucker for relationships of this kind, even if in real life I wouldn't like being in one. You could say it's my guilty pleasure. You delivered their lines naturally and realistically and you built up a tension that ended with that amazing twist! I cannot help but wonder what's in store for Hermione next having him as her boss. Not to mention those little implications at their past together...they're details that make the pair's feelings more believable. Well done!

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Review #47, by Debra20Come Some Rainy Day: The One And Only Chapter

14th July 2013:
This was such a sweet story! Having all of these character look back on the relationships they shared with Ginny and Harry made me teary. They have shared so much, been through so much together that you can't help but fall in love with them every time you read something like this. I particularly enjoyed Ron's POV. As a brother to Ginny, I can totally understand his impulse to overprotect her and his slight jealousy that she won't be with him any more, but with Harry. However, seeing as they were like brothers too, Ron is never going to lose Ginny. Not really.

On this note, I was surprised to see that you chose to make everyone romantically involved with one another at some point. It's of course your choice and you handled it well, but it would have been an amazing opportunity to write them as friends as well. Imagine Draco's POV about Harry and Ginny's wedding. It would have been a great opportunity for some humour. In any case, it was a very sweet story that I've enjoyed! Well done

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Review #48, by Debra20Dance With Me: Dance With Me

14th July 2013:
Hey there! Well, this is certainly different than what I normally read. I am a die hard fan of Ron/Hermione but I am never closed to any other possibilities, and Harry/Hermione has always been up there with Romione in terms of people's preferences and if the two wouldn't have ended together, Harmione would have made a beautiful couple! And that's what you managed to convey with this story. The bond that they shared, the burdens they both carried through the years of Voldemort's terror. Harry's characterization was very well handled as well. I can totally imagine him fidgeting when he asked Hermione to dance. I guess he's a lot like Neville on this respect: no matter how much fighting he'd done and the War he had been a victim of, there was nothing that could scare him more than a girl haha Well done!

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Review #49, by Debra20The Slytherin Challenge: The Slytherin Challenge

14th July 2013:
WOW! This was an amazing story! Like, really awesome. A great idea having the Slytherins pass a trial in their seventh year to be allowed to become a fully fledges Slytherin. It gives the House a whole new air. Imagining that to be able to fully graduate from Hogwarts in House Slytherin you had to prove what you were made of, gives the House tradition, respect, fear. A very original idea that could well fit into the HP world. Excellent!

What I found a bit odd is the manner you chose to open the door to the secret chamber where the trial was held. I may be wrong, but if I remember correctly, Parseltongues were pretty fact, apart from Voldemort and Harry I don't think there was someone else who was able to speak the tongue. Why did you chose to have it open like that? Also, I wanted to point out that the Slytherins have their House in the dungeons, not behind a portray hole. But these things are minor, they don't detract from the actual story. You are very talented with description and making the reader immerse himself in the story. Great story!

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Review #50, by Debra20Magic Carpets in Goblininstan: A Magic Carpet Ride

13th July 2013:
Serene I am absolutely, without fault and forever in LOVE with your entry. I don't know if I can find the right words to express just how much I've enjoyed this story. Like really, REALLY enjoyed! It was the perfect mix of humour and sweetness that anyone could ask for.

I must confess I've never met a Hannah half as great as yours. I can't say exactly what about the way you chose to portray her makes her come to life like she has (maybe her terrible fright of heights or the way she kept freaking out that Neville was her boyfriend), but keep doing it because it's amazing! They both are completely real people here. I think they've actually jumped from the books and settled into your story because I can't find another way to explain the perfect resemblance they have to their original selves from the HP series. Especially Neville. GOD, how I loved Neville in your story. I'm so happy he stayed IC because we all know that he never asked to have any glory and would never presume to be a war hero...if anything, he'd always feel embarrassed and flushed when people would mention the great deeds he's done in the Second War. So it seems the most natural thing in the world that he'd be more afraid of heights (as he has been since we're first introduced to his character by JK) than defying Voldemort haha

And that proposal scene...the sweetest, most hilarious proposal scene ever! I felt like hugging Neville all the way through. Fighting in a war didn't change his clumsiness and his fretful nature and I'm glad you decided to keep him like that. It gives him a lot of depth.

Seriously in love with this piece. 10/10 without a doubt! I'll add it to my favourites pronto :D

Author's Response: Aw, thanks so much for your compliments, especially on Hannah! I'll be honest, if I were an HP character, I would most likely be Hannah, haha, so maybe that had something to do with it. :P You know, I didn't even think of the afraid of heights thing in canon until you pointed it out...but shhh, we'll keep that our secret because it actually works out so well! Haha!

Thanks for the favorite and this wonderful review! :)

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