Reading Reviews From Member: MargaretLane
  
651 Reviews Found

Review #51, by MargaretLaneActions Speak Louder than Words: Bereft: Scorpius POV

1st June 2014:
Oh poor Scorpius. It's understandable that he'd blame himself. Poor, poor kid.

And I like the way his Aunt Daphne and her husband appear like basically decent people, but clearly aren't used to raising kids, especially a recently traumatised teenager. He's not getting the help and support he needs from them, but it's really nobody's fault.

Love the description of the room he'd been "assigned to". It sounds almost institutional, like he doesn't feel the room belongs to him at all. It kind of sums up how detached from his aunt and uncle he feels.

Gosh, Ron really is overreacting. I can imagine he'd be worried when his daughter disappears, but surely he could understand she'd want to see her friend after he'd an experience like that. And he sure isn't being very sensitive in a grieving household. He could at least TRY talking to Scorpius's uncle, before having a fit.

And honestly, Ron was YOUNGER when he and the twins "ran away" to rescue Harry. In the middle of the night. In a stolen car.

You've written that he couldn't "every" remember his aunt with a wand in her hand, instead of "ever".

And I like the indication that Daphne is more concerned about Scorpius than he realises.

Author's Response: Hello!

Thanks again for your wonderful reviews. I am really touched how you notice the little details that I try to put into the story.

Ron is... a trip. He is emotions first, thinking later. He doesn't think he is overreacting. It IS his teenage daughter, after all and he HATES the Malfoys. I don't think he was happy that they died, but he definitely doesn't want to admit that Scorpius and Rose are friends.

Haha - I was referring to Ron and Harry's seventh year, when they ran away to find the Horcruxes, but you are RIGHT - he did run away in second year, too!

I fixed the "every" to "ever." Thanks for catching that!

I didn't want everyone in Scorpius's life to be against him or killed off, but I needed Daphne to not be a great parent for him - I pretty much wanted him to end up being raised by Harry for his last few years of school.

Thanks again!

Beth


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Review #52, by MargaretLaneActions Speak Louder than Words: Blown Away: Scorpius POV

1st June 2014:
Again, we're getting a pretty clear picture without you spelling things out directly. Draco appears pretty strict and I wonder if his dislike of Scorpius playing football is because it's a Muggle game (amusingly enough, soccer used to be controversial over here at one point due to well, being English, basically).

Hmm, I wonder what rumours were going around Hogwarts.

And we're also getting an explanation of why Scorpius is so often angry.

Yi-i-ikes, that got heavy pretty quickly. When he mentioned the bizarre scene, I thought he was going to have seen his parents being intimate or something, not their bodies. I wonder what happened - if it was an accident or something else. Considering the rumours, I'm wondering if they were killed or something.

And the last thing Scorpius did was argue with them. Poor, poor kid.

Author's Response: Hello!

Thanks again for all of these wonderful reviews. The rumors going around Hogwarts refer to the fact that the kids were talking about Draco being a death eater. Draco never really sat Scorpius down to explain all of that , and it sort of came to a head in this scene.

Your intuition is very keen. That's all I'm going to say right now! :)

Thanks again!

Beth


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Review #53, by MargaretLaneActions Speak Louder than Words: Bent: Rose POV

1st June 2014:
This is a bit silly, but the paragraph breaks in this chapter are larger than you might have intended.

And again, I LOVE how naturally you get information across, like letting us know James plays Quidditch by saying he'd invited his whole Quidditch team.

The ages seem a bit off. The epilogue mentions Lily starts two years after Albus and Rose, so if she has two years to go, they should be graduating that year.

And this reminds me a little of our own Graduation from secondary school, although the term isn't quite right, since ours took place BEFORE the exams and was a Mass. And afterwards, we all went to the pubs. We had school next day, but surprise, surprise, not many people showed up.

And *laughs at James and Albus being so protective of Lily. The joys of being the youngest, I guess. You remain a kid in everybody's mind.

It might sounds better to speak of "Al and Scorpius, who were in the program along with Dom", instead of putting the latter in brackets. It might flow a little more naturally.

There should be a full stop after "Scorpius commented" and a capital "H" at the beginning of "He had gone through the rest of the female population."

Aw, poor Rose, being so embarrassed about her reaction and feeling like a coward. Based on what you've hinted she's been through, it sounds like she's extremely brave.

Love the last line about how she felt something. It hints at the beginning of a recovery and also at a possible relationship with Scorpius once she's well enough to deal with that.

Author's Response: Hello again,

Thank you so much for all of the wonderful reviews. I was so surprised! I just submitted all of the fixes you suggested. Thank you so much. This was my very first story and it took me several months to figure out how to submit a chapter without all the spaces. I fixed those as well - thanks for pointing them out.

I think I mentioned in my last response that I chose to make Lily four years younger than Rose. She needed to be underage for part of the story. In addition, I really wanted Selenia to be Rose's best friend and I thought that if Lily were too close in age, they would have a much closer relationship.

Wow! Your graduation was BEFORE classes were over?! That is poor planning.

Thanks for the comment on the last line - that was what I was going for! Woot!

Your reviews are so sweet - thank you.

Beth


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Review #54, by MargaretLaneActions Speak Louder than Words: Broken: Rose POV

1st June 2014:
Your review was so awesome, I thought I'd go and check out your writing and I was attracted to this story firstly by the whole Rose in Ravenclaw and the story being from her point of view thing and then more so, by the title of this chapter.

Yikes, the first paragraph throws the reader right into events and immediately creates suspense. I can't wait to find out if there is something specific Rose is having panic attacks over.

There's definitely something, as she mentioned when "it" happened. I want to know what IT is.

I really like the part about her being numb and the whole idea of a traumatised Rose.

Sounds like she's been attacked in some way, since she blames herself for not fighting harder. I wonder if she's ever even told anybody what happened to her. It sounds as if maybe she didn't.

Funny we put Rose and Albus in the same house (not Scorpius though, my Scorpius is a Slytherin, but sort of friendly with Rose and Albus all the same) and both involve references to trauma, though it's not Rose being traumatised in my story.

I really love the way you gradually drop hints as to what happened to her. It makes more sense than having her stop and think about the event directly, both because she already KNOWS what happened and is unlikely to think it through in narrative form and because she probably wouldn't want to talk about it anyway. You are giving quite a lot of information in a very natural way.

And you portray her mental state very well.

Yikes, I was thinking she seemed very traumatised, but I hadn't considered she may have been held captive for days on end. It's a wonder she's doing as well as she is (maintaining her grades and so on) after that.

LOVE the part about McGonagall falling out of her chair.

Sounds like Albus and Rose are among the oldest in the family, well, after James and Victoire. I like that. So many stories have them next youngest after Hugo and Lily. Because Ron and Ginny are the youngest of the Weasleys, I guess, but it always struck me as a little unlikely all the Weasley children would be born when their parents were in their twenties.

Excellent first chapter.

Author's Response: Hi!

Holy cow! I'm just... I don't know how to say it, but WOW! This review was so awesome and unexpected. Thanks so much.

I'm glad you liked the idea of a traumatized Rose, because boy, can I deliver on that one! At this point in the story, her friends do not know about the trauma, although they do know that she was kidnapped and held for six days. Seems suspicious, huh? Rose has kept her secret very close to her and, as a result, had created this daily routine (complete with mantra) to help herself get through it and "act" normal.

As far as the ages of the next gen kids, I put Victoire as the oldest and then James and Fred in the same year. A year later came Rose, Dom and Al. Molly was after that. Then Louis was two years after her. I did take a little liberties with Lily and Hugo. I put them four years behind Al and Rose. I know it isn't most likely canon, but I wanted Lily to be more like a little sister to Rose. If they were only two years apart, they might be closer to best friends. Later on in the story, Lily's age becomes important.

Anyway, thank you so much for this awesome, wonderful, fantastic, super-surprising review! I loved every word of it!

Beth


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Review #55, by MargaretLaneAlbus Potter and the Pureblood's Secret: The Burned Boat

30th May 2014:
*laughs at John's assumption that if something went wrong, Gemma must be involved*

You've written "Matt didn't seem to pleased" to have the first years beside him, instead of "too".

*laughs* Lindy's managed to get a detention before the school year even begins. THAT's not exactly a good start. And Percy will be raging.

Poor Bethany. I have a feeling that if she befriends Gemma, Samantha and Lindy, she's going to be dragged in over her head a few times.

Yeah, it must be annoying for Madame Pomfrey to have to waste time dealing with kids using Skiving Snackboxes, when there are real illnesses and injuries to deal with. I wonder how large the Hospital Wing is actually.

Over here, coincidentally enough, our Minister for Education is trying to introduce a new Junior Cert. course. For a moment, I thought the changes in this might be something similar, but they seem a good deal more minor. The changes to the Junior Cert. involve introducing continuous assessment, reducing the number of subjects students taking, changing the grades and so on. Teachers aren't entirely pleased though, so who knows what'll happen.

The internships sound interesting and they make sense for Hogwarts, since Hogwarts students mostly seem to go straight from school into employment.

I'd say between John and Kaden and Gemma and her friends, Mischief Night could get VERY interesting. I'm not exactly sorry we don't have that here. April's Fools day is enough!

Author's Response: John knows his sister quite well. And they're very alike, so it's easy for him to spot trouble. Percy won't be happy about the trouble at all. Bethany will be dragged in over her head, but she'll have friends, so she'll be happy.

Madam Pomfrey doesn't have time for people faking illness. She's got enough to worry about with the actual magical injuries.

Internships really do make sense. I've always been curious about job training in the wizarding world because they don't have college (that we know of).

Both Mischief Night and April Fool's Day will be quite interesting! Thanks for reading and reviewing! :)


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Review #56, by MargaretLaneSelf Defeat: Chapter One: Reflection of the Past

29th May 2014:
Apologies for taking a while to get around to this.

Really like the way the first line gives the impression of being trapped. The door slamming shut really sets the mood.

I'm being super-nitpicky here, but I think you could tighten up the sentence, "Directly in front of me sits a woman whom I haven’t seen in years, nor had I ever thought I would see again." It might sound better as something like "Directly in front of me sits a woman I haven't seen in years and never thought I'd see again."

You really create suspense well in the paragraph. I really want to know who this woman is and what part she played in the narrator's life.

Love the simile of the werewolf hunting its prey. It fits the wizarding world well.

And ooh, I hadn't expected that to be the explanation of who the woman is. Brilliant.

Also love the way you keep Bellatrix in character. A lot of stories show her as having been gentler in her youth, which of course is possible, but I like this version where she appears to have been vicious from childhood.

Author's Response: Ah thank you, I'm glad you liked it...

As I said in the forum, I actually started this a few years ago, it was one of my first.


It was actually pretty hard for me to write, because I personally see Narcissa being super snooty and pretentious, so I was sort of trying to portray that through the writing, while not completely overdoing it and making it un-relatable.

I plan on going over the whole thing in the next few months with a fine tooth comb, especially since my writing style has changed over the years (even though I haven't written much in that time), and I feel like it's just very apparent between this chapter and the later ones.

But, joining your challenge was a good kick in the behind to finally, after like three or four years, to finish this story for better or worse.

I'm also glad that you liked how I portrayed Bella. I sometimes vary in how I see her...I of course don't think she was a murderer at the age of ten, but I think she was a bad person right from the start, partly because of her parents and home life. For the purpose of this story I wanted Narcissa and Andy to be closer to one another, with Bellatrix sort of swooping in and (in a cruel, offhand way), picking up Andy's place (badly) once Andromeda gets disowned.

Anyways, I think I've rambled on quite enough for now, but thanks again for the invaluable input! Again, excellent challenge, and I can't wait to read/review the other entries as well!


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Review #57, by MargaretLaneAn Unwell Feeling: An Unwell Feeling

26th May 2014:
I like the way you describe how Astoria is feeling when Draco rejects her. It's very emotive and draws attention to the fact that people do get hurt in situations like this.

Shouldn't it be "old-fashioned way" rather than "old-fashion way"?

And you've written "you're mother" when it should be "your".

You write romantic-typed stuff very well. As well as Astoria's grief, I really like the way you express how Blaise feels as he looks at her and how lonely he feels now that one of the only two people to care about him has left him.

I don't like the sound of Draco in this, actually. Of course, I'm missing a lot as this is a spin-off and he may well have justification for being angry with Blaise, but the way he has everybody afraid to even go near Blaise, when it's he who has cheated with Blaise's girlfriend seems kind of mean. Though of course, as this is written from Blaise's and Astoria's points of view, it's going to be a little biased.

Aw, I like the way Astoria wants Draco to be happy even if it's not with her.

I also like the way you show Blaise as being slow to admit his growing feelings for Astoria. Considering what they've been through, it makes more sense than them just falling into each other's arms immediately.

And I can well imagine Lucius being raging.

Author's Response: EEP! Thanks for review so quick and pointing out the grammatical mistake I did. I will fix it right away before entering it.

Thanks. I try my best to describe their raw feelings like they opened up to the readers and we can see inside their hearts. And yes, Draco is an jerk, but he does have his reasons. I'm though fairly happy that you don't like him b/c it isn't Draco's story. It's Blaise & Astoria and I kinda want the readers to feel compassion toward the two instead of Draco.

I think most people feel they should throw themselves at each other for comfort, but they really in love with other people. It's difficult to forget love and accept someone else.

Anyway, thanks for R&R! And I hope you really enjoyed this.


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Review #58, by MargaretLaneAlbus Potter and the Stone Mark: The Sorting

25th May 2014:
OK, I'm now interested in Professor Brocklehurste, for the sole reason that my OC Transfiguration teacher is also an ex-Ravenclaw, although Flitwick is still teaching in my version, so she's not head of house. I always like seeing what new teachers are like anyway.

Well done on the sorting hat song. They are HARD to write. I did one for my year two, but usually I skip them.

I'm looking forward to seeing where Lily is sorted.

Poor Hugo. *sympathises with him* I hope it works out OK for him. I'm sure it will.

And you've a Nott sorted. Interesting. I wonder if they'll play a significant part.

You've some very long paragraphs in this that are hard enough to read online. I would start a new paragraph when Nott's name is called out and then another when Lily is called out.

*cracks up at Harry knowing James has the Marauder's map*

You've spelled Quidditch as "Quiddith" at one point.

Author's Response: Thank you!
Brocklehurste is basically our McGonagall figure. We originally had McGonagall as headmistress in our story.
Thank you, I'm quite proud of the song! :) Now that I've studied them, it's unfortunately easier for me to be critical of other original sorting hat songs, especially when they don't have a regular meter.
Yeah, we put them both in Gryffindor. The older Nott is the on the Slytherin quidditch team, so he'll be showing up again soon.
I was thinking the same thing. I think the sorting is in 3 paragraphs now, but it was originally one long paragraph that took half a page. I'll look into breaking it up more.
Of course he would have the Marauder's Map! ;)
Oops. This is the second typo in a row that you've caught: which goes to show that even with four or five revisions you can still miss things.
Thank you for the review!


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Review #59, by MargaretLaneAlbus Potter and Slytherin's Office: Brewing Troubles

24th May 2014:
I giggled at the Easter bunny tasting like Brussels sprouts. I actually ought to have made mention of Easter being Fred and George's birthday in 1st year. I only realised it after I'd written the chapter and couldn't be bothered rewriting.

*laughs at them giving the candy from all three of them even though Albus had forgotten* Just because it reminds me of something that may happen in a couple of chapters in my story. Lalala.

By the way, "candy" is an American term. They'd probably say "sweets" or "sweets and chocolate."

Oh gosh, I didn't expect that. Putting in too much of an ingredient could send them right back to the start again. I hope they can find a way to counteract the effects of the extra ingredient.

He could probably claim he wanted to practice brewing Herbicide for his exams or something, if it's a potion they studied that year.

Aw, that's a sweet, and utterly believable reason for him to want to brew herbicide.

Author's Response: I like to know the dates of most of my events, so I pulled up a 2018 calendar online and found that Easter fell on April Fools Day! It was too good to ignore.

British people don't say candy? Now that I think about it, the word "candy" was never mentioned in Harry Potter. I learn something new every day!

The potion is very exhausting and difficult. Albus was bound to make a mistake somewhere.

Yes, he probably could have said he wanted to practice, good point. I didn't think of that. But Albus is really good at brewing potions, so Fawley would realize something else was up. Also, he needed a reason to keep it. Most likely, Fawley would have just kept the potion, which is what usually happens in potion class. In my head canon, the successful potions brewed in class Fawley keeps in case it is needed.

Thanks for reason!


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Review #60, by MargaretLaneAlbus Potter and the Pureblood's Secret: Gemma Brickston

23rd May 2014:
Aw, poor Matt. He's clearly not having an easy time of it.

Ha, James sounds like the twins, saying Albus has to do his time without using magic.

Poor Lily. I wonder what happened between her and whoever her boyfriend is.

Poor Bethany. Going away to boarding school for the first time must be terrifying enough, let alone entering a whole new world. I remember people had a hard enough time when we started college and most of us were going home every weekend and we were around 17-19. The first few weeks, I cried when the train pulled into my town on a Friday afternoon. *laughs* I kept thinking of my little sister and this book I read where a character said they weren't that close to their eldest sister because she'd gone away to college when they were only a little younger than my sister was.

I wonder where Gemma will end up. And Bethany. I'm guessing they'll both be Gryffindors. John seems to be expecting Gemma to be. And hmm, Gemma sounds as much trouble as her older brother.

Aw, that's nice of Kadan to buy Bethany a load of sweets. I wonder if she and Gemma will become friends. You have so many younger characters, you could carry on this series forever, if you started writing sequels about them. *laughs*

*laughs at Bethany asking if it's true they almost die every year* Pretty much, yeah. Although they did OK in 5th year. I suspect Kadan might be the type to exaggerate anyway.

Between Gemma and the twins, I think Hogwarts is in for some fun.

And aw at Bethany asking Kadan's permission to go with them.

I'm looking forward to seeing what changes are in store for Hogwarts.

Author's Response: Nothing huge happened between Lily and her boyfriend. They're young and it just didn't work out. Not a huge deal. Lily will get over it quickly.

I've always thought a lot of the first years would have trouble going away. I certainly would've if I'd gone to boarding school at age 11. I thought Bethany would be a good character to address this with, especially since Kaden was very much a contrast. But Kaden will help her, and soon she'll have friends and will love Hogwarts.

Haha, I have no plans on keeping up this series after Al & his friends graduate. It's got to end somewhere.

Kaden definitely exaggerated his adventures at the end of every year, mostly just to get a reaction out of Bethany. But there was some truth to it. Thanks for reading and reviewing! :)


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Review #61, by MargaretLaneAlbus Potter and the Stone Mark: Candies on the Train

22nd May 2014:
I LOVE your chapter titles.

The description of Teddy and explanation of who he is sounds a bit forced. Most people reading will know who he is anyway.

I like the way you show Lily as being nervous. She's bound to be, leaving for boarding school for the first time.

*laughs at the idea of Fred and James swamping the stairs* You've established their personalities and the fact they are friends very quickly and easily.

You use the characters' names rather a lot. There are some parts where it might sound better to use pronouns.

*grins at Percy talking about cauldron regulations* Sounds like him.

You've written that Molly could take points of "form Slytherin" instead of "from".

After spending two years at school with Scorpius and presumably having at least some classes with him, shouldn't Albus have some idea whether or not Scorpius is like his family?

*grins* Fred is pretty smart, pretending to be reluctant to offer Scorpius the sweet.

I doubt he'd say "candy" since that is an American term.

Poor Scorpius. It must be tough being judged by who his family are.

And yikes, things get dramatic at the end of the chapter. I like the way you put in a serious note as Rose begins to talk about the Dark Mark.

Hmm, this is getting very ominous.

I wonder if Harry is going to send Lily whatever it is he wants to hide. It would be an easy way of getting it into Hogwarts, but it could be putting Lily at risk. I guess it depends on what it is though. *ponders*

This sounds like it's going to be a rather original mystery. Looking forward to finding out more about what's going on.

Author's Response: Thanks!

Yeah, that does sound forced. When we originally wrote this chapter in particular, we did not know who our audience would be and assumed we would have to introduce everyone. (This was before we even found HPFF.) We also didn't use a lot of pronouns I guess because we were introducing a lot of he's, she's, them-s. ;) But yes, pronouns would have been smoother.
Whoops, I'll fix the typo.

You don't see it in this chapter as much, but the personality of our Scorpius keeps to himself even within his own house. So whether Albus would know his personality: it's sort of yes and no.

Whoops, really? (*googles "brittish word for candy" *) huh, I did not know that. Google isn't being helpful with alternatives right now either. Well we aren't planning to do Brittish spellings anyway; plus we couldn't bring ourselves to call the Weasley sweaters (the term used in the American books) ...call them jumpers instead (here that's a style of dress for a young girl).

Interesting hypothesis. I suppose that's a possibility, but he could also send something with James or even Neville, couldn't he? . . . I really can't say anymore! ;-)

Thanks for another review! :D I expected the first but was surprised at the second; you only owed us one from the history challenge. Still; thanks a lot!!


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Review #62, by MargaretLaneAlbus Potter and the Stone Mark: Parchment, Quills, and Symbols

18th May 2014:
Love the opening to this story.

And I'm somewhat surprised this takes place in Albus's third year. I assumed you'd start with his first, though I WAS wondering why you wrote a separate story about him on the Hogwarts Express and didn't just start this story that way. I guess this answers my question. It's a good idea to start later actually. It makes sense that any dodgy activity wouldn't necessarily begin as soon as Albus starts Hogwarts.

That's interesting, that Harry takes his children to visit Dudley's family. Nice to think the reconciliation hinted at in the last book continued.

Wow, this story gets going quickly. Wasn't expecting the Dark Mark to appear this soon. Sounds like somebody has killed a number of Muggles and raised the Dark Mark. It could still just be somebody who's trying to imitate the Death Eaters.

Oh, the other symbol makes it a little more scary.

Really intriguing start. I'm looking forward to finding out where this goes.

Author's Response: Haha yup we had planned all along to start in his third year because then Lily and Hugo would be there too. We never planned to write a FULL novella for all seven years with Albus.

Yup! On that subject, we wrote a short about the Potter kids being forced to go to the Dursley boy's birthday party when they really didn't want to go. Unlike a lot of our material, that one is already posted! (Albus' chapter from Just Another Picnic; which IS later referenced in this novella. ;) With situations like this, I find it really hard not to self advertise...)

I can't say anything more about the Dark/Other Mark except that it is developed in this novella. ;)

Yay! We're glad you enjoyed it!! Thanks for the review! :D


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Review #63, by MargaretLaneLumos: Chocolate Galleons

16th May 2014:
*grins* Typical of Ron to think about how getting the Order of Merlin is something his brothers have never done. Might give him a bit of confidence.

Dumbledore was in some bind, wasn't he? Risk the death of a boy he cared about or pretty much ensure the deaths of numerous people Voldemort and the Death Eaters were killing. If Voldemort hadn't used Harry's blood in Goblet of Fire, I wonder what Dumbledore would have done. Would he have found another way around things or would he have had to sacrifice Harry "for the Greater Good"?

I think it should be "was in A critical condition," not just "was in critical condition."

And yeah, that is fairly serious. And it's not like Malfoy as he didn't know what he was doing then; he does now.

You should start a new paragraph each time a new person speaks.

*laughs* They're not biased at all, are they? He may have been provoked, but he certainly deliberately injured somebody. I was pretty sure he'd get off though. You don't award somebody the Order of Merlin one day and convict them of a crime the next.

Author's Response: Yes, I'm trying to keep the canon in these characters but now I'm realising just how hard JKR may have had it...

Thanks for stopping my!


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Review #64, by MargaretLaneLumos: Temper

16th May 2014:
The first part of this chapter was really interesting. And amusing. I didn't expect it to begin like that. I wonder if there's any greater significance or if it's just for fun. Love Dumbledore's final intervention.

Oh yikes, he did rather overreact to Rita Skeeter. Now, admittedly, she is very annoying and her reporting is a joke, but using Dark Magic against her?

You use Harry and Hermione's names rather a lot in their conversation. It's a tiny thing, but some could easily be replaced with "he" and "she" and they might stand out less.

I do like the way you show the stress he is under. It makes sense, as he has just been through a war and lost a number of people he was close to. I guess his attack on Rita Skeeter is a result of that.

I also like the fact that he receives consequences for his behaviour. I doubt the Ministry will be too harsh though, as he is a national hero.

Author's Response: Ok, thanks for pointing the dialogue part out, it's very helpful to me.

SPOILER ALERT!
May I just say all is not what it seems and maybe it was not really Harry casting that spell.


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Review #65, by MargaretLaneAlbus Potter and the Pureblood's Secret: Balladanis's Visit

16th May 2014:
Oooh, Balladanis again. Interesting. I found him a really original and interesting character.

And today is shaping up to be a good day. It's like 10am here and I've already been offered work as a reader during the exams (which happen during the holidays here, so no subbing work) and found a chapter of this up early.

LOVE the way Hugo is so into Quidditch, but just isn't much good. Poor guy. And the fact Lily is OK at it, but not interested. It's just nice to see a variety of abilities and interests, since surely not EVERYBODY in the wizarding world is interested in the same sport.

*laughs at Hermione saying James doesn't count as a responsible adult in her book* I agree. That reminds me of an Irish soap, actually, when this girl was having her 18th birthday party and she persuaded her parents to let her older sister (who was...I don't know, maybe 24ish) to supervise. She accidentally put the date up on facebook or something and a load of strangers came and trashed the place and the Guards (our police) were finally called and they were like "next time, make sure there's an adult to supervise. Because apparently mid-20s doesn't count as adult around here.

Poor Matt. The guy really doesn't have an easy time, does he?

I laughed out loud at "you could let me in for starters."

I'm also kind of amused at Balladanis saying Laurentis's other appointments were questionable. Because he's totally uncontroversial! Actually, there are huge scandals going on with our Gardaí (bet the fada won't work), to the point that our Minister for Justice stepped down a few days ago.

And that comment about Johnson being an idiot also amused me.

Oh, oh, the Ministry is back to jailing innocent people to protect their own reputations. Great! Just what is needed!

Yikes, sounds like Laurentis is worse than I thought. I assumed it was more Malfoy taking advantage of her, but sounds like it's the other way about.

And I love the character (rather than the person) of Balladanis more now. He reminds me a little of Snape in a way, obnoxious, but on the right side when it comes down to it. Not that I think that justifies what Snape did and I don't think it justifies Balladanis nearly outing Matt either, but people are not just all good or all bad.

Hmm, OK, so how dodgy Lauentis is is debatable. I always assumed she was more stupid and power-hungry than evil too, more Fudge than Scrimgeour (I may POSSIBLY be biased when it comes to Scrimgeour), but who knows.

This is a really awesome chapter. I loved it.

Author's Response: Balladanis is so interesting to write. I have a whole backstory on him that could probably result in another novel if I wanted to take the time to write it.

I figured there's no way all the Weasleys could possibly be good at Quidditch. And the idea of Ron having a son who's hopeless at Quidditch seemed quite interesting. Hugo's certainly dedicated, though.

I don't know if Hermione will ever consider James to be a responsible adult... Maybe once his maturity level catches up to his age.

Balladanis doesn't think his own appointment was controversial, despite the fact that it was. Still, he is better than Johnson. At least he wants to get things done. Laurentis is power hungry, and Malfoy, just like when he was a teenager, is along for the ride and hasn't found the courage to say no.

Laurentis wants things done her way, and her way only, regardless of how it affects others. That's her main problem. Thanks for reading and reviewing! :)


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Review #66, by MargaretLaneBeneath the Silver Moon: One

15th May 2014:
I like your first paragraph. It kind of sets the scene and creates atmosphere. I'm not that great at atmosphere, so I'm impressed.

Aidan Douglas -fine Irish name. Actually, I'm not sure if Douglas is an Irish name or not, but I've certainly met people with that name.

And I love the way you describe him pulling Roxanne down the steps. Brilliant use of description.

This is RIDICULOUSLY nit-picky, but you use their names a lot, to the point it is kind of noticeable. It might sound better to replace some with "he" or "she". As there is only one boy and one girl, it'll be perfectly clear who's who anyway.

OK, I'm rather confused as to who is with them and why he is attacked. I'm guessing I'm supposed to be though. *is intrigued* I assume it has something to do with his lycanthropy.

Love the ending of the chapter. It sums things up so succinctly, while only making us want to read on to figure out exactly what is going on here.

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Review #67, by MargaretLaneHarry Potter and the Wizard's Portrait: The Recapture of the Carrows

14th May 2014:
Hmm, this is interesting, starting a year eight fic right in the Battle of Hogwarts. I don't usually read year eight fics, but it sounds like this is going to deal with the issues that arose in the series, rather than just having the trio return to being typical secondary school students, as if the previous couple of years never happened.

I really like the way this chapter shows the war doesn't just end when Voldemort is defeated; that there are still issues to deal with, like the Carrows escaping.

I also like the way you show Hermione as being affected by the torture she experienced. It is only realistic that it would affect her.

Love the part with Dawlish and Ron's comment about his uncle Billius.

*cheers for Kingsley organising things so quickly* Especially giving Arthur back pay. Recently information about the pensions for our Irish struggle for independence was given out. I think the Ministry should give the Order members some kind of compensation too, actually.

I was surprised when Peeves dropped Carrow a wand. I really didn't think he'd give them anything that'd help them escape. And then it turned out to be a trick one. Brilliant.

Author's Response: Hi, thanks for giving this chapter a read, and for such a lovely review, especially since you say its not what you would normally read.

I did spend quite a few chapters tying up loose ends from the books, and I especially explored the aftermath of Fred's death in a couple of chapters. I tried to be realistic about what would logically happen between the Ministry, Death Eaters, and the Goblins post-war, along with the main characters, and let those natural conflicts shape the plot, along with adding some elements of my own.

In the books, whenever there was a shift of power at the Ministry, it brought about dramatic changes very quickly, so I just followed that same protocol in this story, and just tried to keep it within believable limits. As a former Order member, I think Kingsley would be very much on the ball as Minister of Magic, and get certain things done right away, particularly when it came to protecting Harry and the Order. He also seemed to be a man of high integrity, so I think he'd compensate Ministry workers who'd lost wages because of the war. I was especially delighted to see your comment about the Ministry giving Order members some kind of pay, because I thought of that as well, and actually had Kingsley do it in later chapter when he recruits help from the Order at their first meeting.

I'm glad you liked Peeves' prank in the dungeon. I tried to put a good dose of humor into the story, and they were often my favorite scenes to write.

Thanks again for such a lovely review. I really enjoyed reading your comments, and I hope you'll decide to continue with the story.


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Review #68, by MargaretLaneReassessment: Reasessment

12th May 2014:
I was quite surprised when Percy just laughed at Molly's worry about her sister's grades since he's so particular in the books. It really shows how he has developed as a character since then, which makes sense as he is a middle-aged man now and not a young man in his late teens/early twenties. He's bound to have learnt something.

It should be "leave that to your mother and me", not "your mother and I". I find the best way to check sentences like that is to leave out the "your mother" part and just think what it would be if it was "leave it to me."

I like the difference between the sisters.

James explanation for his misbehaviour is amusing.

You've written "past time" when it should be "pastime."

I like her love of gardening. It's not a pastime you come across too often in fiction and I particularly like the way it is connected with the wizaring world, with her growing potions ingredients.

I seem to be saying a lot of "I like". Sorry if that is coming out a bit stilted.

*laughs at Lucy's comment that she might try snogging a girl next* Just because Molly is so horrified at the thought of her little sister snogging and then Lucy is like "oh, I just felt like it. Wonder who I should snog next." I know it's not quite as laid back as that, as she does seem concerned about not having kissed anybody yet and so on, but still, it really shows the difference in the sisters' attitude.

Author's Response: Yes, I thought that part with Percy was important. He definitely would have learnt something from Fred and George.

Are you sure? I've always learnt that when you are talking about yourself and on other person, it should be '[their name/title] and I'. Maybe we just learnt differently?

I did think it was an appropriate reason for James.

Thanks. I'll go back and edit that in.

I just sort of needed a reason for her to be in the garden... but I actually really quite like it and if I ever write anything with Molly in the future, I think I'll include it.

Yeah, it is quite different. Lucy just wants to kiss a few people and find out what she likes. Molly doesn't want to kiss anyone until she likes them. I really like writing about sister's who are different, but still ultimately love each other.

Thank you so much for your review!


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Review #69, by MargaretLaneAlbus Potter and the Pureblood's Secret: Occlumency

9th May 2014:
This is the second or third time in a row I've got to read the new chapter Friday night.

When I first read the "I got 8 O.W.L.S." comment, I was expecting it to be Matt.

Scorpius does have a point that he can enjoy flying without playing Quidditch.

*grins* Sounds like I might have been right about Lily having a boyfriend. And *laughs at James and Albus still thinking she's about 7* I think I still sometimes think of MY sister as a kid, even though...well, let's say it's more than 10 years since she left school.

James's second choice of job amuses me slightly, since that's probably what he's going to do in my series.

Oh, I was just trying to figure out recently how long it'll be until the last of your Weasley cousins leave Hogwarts. I can't remember what age the youngest are - about 9? I'll have to check that up. I was thinking by the time they do Teddy and Victoire could well have a kid old enough to be only a few years off starting. To keep Weasleys at Hogwarts for all eternity.

That part about "it's raining at my house" reminds me of when I was at college and returned one Sunday night, when it was raining here, so I arrived back in Limerick and the sun was shining - I literally went from night into day - and everybody was staring at me, wearing a raincoat in the sunshine. It always seems to rain in my town anyway.

Matt's done really well, considering how many classes he missed or was feeling ill during. Fair play to him. And I think five classes are probably enough for him. He really doesn't need to exhaust himself.

I think I mentioned before that a girl I knew did NINE Leaving Cert. subjects - the norm is 7 - and got A1s in all nine. She got the highest results in the country. Funnily enough, it seems like nearly every year, ONE person in the country gets 9 A1s.

And now I'm REALLY intrigued as to what's going to happen in Hogwarts. I hadn't thought of her being there to do any more than evaluate the teachers. I hope nothing bad is about to happen. In the books, it really didn't bode well when the Ministry started interfering in Hogwarts.

Five years seems sort of long for what Boone did, but I suppose it's hardly surprising, between the number of crimes and the prejudice against werewolves and possibly also the fact Boone didn't come forward when he was clearly confusing a serious investigation. I can see them being harsher due to the fact a murderer might have escaped justice because of Boone's actions.

I wonder what else is going on. The Aurors MIGHT be involved because of the murder. Gosh, I hope Boone isn't suspected of that.

Trust Hermione to go into the theory so much.

I really don't think I'd be much good at Occlumency. Emptying my mind isn't something I'm much good at. I start thinking, "OK, so I'm supposed to stop thinking of things now. Am I succeeding? OK, clearly I'm not if I'm thinking about whether or not I'm thinking about anything" and so on. *laughs* And to imagine a relaxing place, I'd have to have some spacial intelligence. My sister's Graduation Mass, the principal tried getting everybody to meditate and kept going on about visualising fields and stuff.

Author's Response: Scorpius is write about flying. He doesn't have to play Quidditch to enjoy flying. You were right about Lily's boyfriend! I can relate to James and Albus as well, since I still think of my youngest sister as being little even though she's not.

A lot of my Weasley cousins have worked at WWW, so James will join the ranks if he isn't drafted by a team. The youngest Weasley is Eddie, and he's ten. There will be a few years of no Weasleys at Hogwarts before Sophie (Teddy and Victoire's first) gets to Hogwarts.

It rains all the time where I live, too. And it's not unusual to have it be sunny for part of the day and rainy the other part. I can think of a couple days where it started off quite warm and dropped 30 or 40 degrees by the time the sun set.

Matt did do very well! He's a hard worker and realizes that he has to work extra hard. He knows slacking won't get him anywhere. Wow, nine would be a lot!

You'll find out what's happening at Hogwarts soon. And it's not necessarily anything bad. It won't be Umbridge all over again.

Five years is a lot, but there is prejudice against him, but there will be more to come on that.

I don't think I'd be good at Occlumency either. I'm always thinking about something. Usually new story ideas! Thanks for reading and reviewing! :)


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Review #70, by MargaretLaneSick Sister: Sick Sister

9th May 2014:
Aw, poor Petunia. Looking after your sister when you're only about 17 or 18 must be pretty tough. I agree with her; her parents should have stayed home if they knew Lily was ill. If they didn't, there wasn't much they could do about it.

I like the way you can see Petunia really does care about Lily behind it all. Her "tough, you have to remain hydrated" and the way she reaches for Lily's hand at the end makes it obvious she cares about her, even though she's irritated about not being able to go out with her friends and comes up with that idea that Lily was just pretending to be ill to inconvenience her.

When I was thinking about this challenge, one of the things that did occur to me was what would happen if a Muggleborn came down with something like dragon measles or spattergoit or whatever after coming home for the holidays. I guess dragon measles would be fairly obvious, but some things might not be. There was a mention of black cat flu somewhere, without any indication how it differed from ordinary flu. Imagine being the parents and having a child come down with dragon measles or something!

This being the 70s, I think people might be less inclined to go to the professors anyway. Bullying was often seen more as a sign the victim couldn't stand up for themselves in the past and telling tales was even more frowned upon.

Love Petunia's comment about why doesn't somebody just wave a wand and get rid of him. It sort of echoes the Prime Minister's comment about how they are wizards so they should be able to do anything and shows how she really doesn't understand the whole situation.

And the "I'll be just fine" is ominous, when we know what Voldemort will do to Lily.

Good story.

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Review #71, by MargaretLaneI am alpha: I am alpha

9th May 2014:
Love the first couple of sentences here. They really sort of set the atmosphere. And I actually jumped when the twigs snapped beneath his feet. I think getting an actual physical reaction from your reader is a pretty good sign!

Hmm, I'm beginning to think his mistress is the moon. When I got to the line about her always being his mistress but him not knowing it, that occurred to me.

Greyback comes across as sort of insane here. I mean, obviously, he is insane, but I mean in the sense of being out of touch with reality. And he seems to think he is doing the right thing by biting those children - the right thing for them, as well as for his cause of creating an army.

Really well written story.

Author's Response: Hi!

It was going to be a horror story of him getting bitten, but it disagreed...

That is a very good sign! Wow!

His mistress is indeed the moon! (the chapter summary is "the moon is my mistress" :p )

Oh, definitely something wrong there. Well why would he bite those children? Either as revenge, or because he thought it was the right thing to do. And I've seen it frequently referred to as him considering it his "gift".

Thank you!

- Leonore


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Review #72, by MargaretLaneStarting New Traditions: One Shot

5th May 2014:
Well, being Irish, I have to read this, as May is still called "Beltaine" in the Irish language and the first of May still marks the beginning of summer for us.

Fairies are mentioned as existing in the Potterverse, but they are very different from the idea of "sí", although the banshee exists, which literally translates as "fairy woman". The Irish word order is the opposite way around to English.

Hmm, this has a really interesting pairing. I would never have thought of putting Hermione and Rastaban together.

It could be interesting to go on further and see what actually happens with their Beltane celebrations.

And it is totally in character for Hermione to want to learn as much as possible about any tradition she hears about.

Author's Response: Thank you so much for the review. I really appreciate you taking the time to leave all that feedback :)

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Review #73, by MargaretLaneAlbus Potter and the Pureblood's Secret: Big News

2nd May 2014:
*laughs at Albus immediately wondering what James has done when he hears his mother sobbing* Oh James!

And that seems a fair compromise that Harry offered James.

*laughs* I honestly think Ron would brag more about a nephew being a Quidditch player than a daughter being a Healer.

*laughs at the idea of Harry running for Minister*

One thing I've noticed is that Harry tells Teddy not to "up and quiet", when it should be "quit".

I don't suppose you've been hearing the news from Northern Ireland. The leader of a political party is being questioned over involvement in a murder and there are accusations of political motivation (European elections towards the end of the month - not sure the exact date for theirs, as obviously Northern Ireland is part of the U.K.) and threats of no longer supporting the police force and all kinds of stuff. (The murder was part of the Troubles, so sort of political itself.) Now, I do NOT believe that investigation is biased or politically motivated, but still with the way Stuart Boone's fears remind me of some of the past in Northern Ireland, this is a sort of appropriate day to read this.

And I like the mention of how Ron thinks it best to be on the inside. Yet another historical similarity - it reminds me of the struggle for Irish independence when Sinn Fein (not quite the same as today's Sinn Fein; it's complicated) refused to take their seats in Westminister and invited all other political parties to come and join them setting up a parliament in Dublin, but the other nationalist party refused because they thought they could do more within the British parliament.

I think both ways of working are valid. I can see why both Ron and Harry feel as they do.

Harry might even be in a better position to help him out since he'll be actually in the school. But yeah, I can understand how he feels.

I didn't think the article was too bad. It started off making it sound like really sour grapes, like he left because he was demoted, but then they brought up the Stuart Boone thing. I guess fishy isn't too bad, by the standards of the Daily Prophet.

*grins* That makes sense about his not needing new books for seventh year. It's pretty much the same here for sixth year, except for the exam papers, which cost a fair amount. They are books of like the past papers for about the last ten years and you have to get one for each subject you're doing.

Author's Response: Ron probably would brag more about one of his own kids being a Quidditch player than a healer, but James is his nephew. He'll be quite proud of Rose. And Hugo definitely will never be a Quidditch player...

Nope, I haven't been keeping up on the Irish news. I tend to get all of that from you! It's really interesting how it sort of fits with my story, though, especially since I don't know much about what's going on over there.

More than just Ron thinking it's best to be on the inside, he and Harry think it's best to have one of them on the inside and one on the outside. More on that in a later chapter. Harry will be in a better position to help out at the school.

The article could've been worse, and would've been if Rita Skeeter had written it!

We don't have to buy exam papers here. The teachers give copies of past exams for practice But you do often have to buy review books toward the end of the year. Thanks for reading and reviewing! :)


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Review #74, by MargaretLaneDear Thelo: I

2nd May 2014:
Marlene McKinnon is a really interesting person to write about. I love reading about minor characters. There are so many people J.K. Rowling only introduced and so many questions to be asked about them. It's great to see them fleshed out and some possible answers to the questions given.

In the third paragraph "family's" should have an apostrophe before the "s".

Yikes, things get dramatic quickly. You can really feel the tension when her father returns.

In the fourth and fifth paragraphs, you've left out a few of the spaces between words.

You've also used Marlene's name rather a lot. If you read through it again, you'll probably see places where it would read a little better if her name was replaced with "she".

Love the way you tell us she used to be top of the class without making it sound forced. Sometimes things like that can be hard to include as they are obvious to the characters, but you've included it really naturally.

In the fifth paragraph, there should be an apostrophe in the word "friend's" when you are talking about "her friend's younger brother."

I like the fact that she doesn't notice Narcissa.

When talking about the "mother's obsessive gardening", "mother's" should have an apostrophe.

I'm not sure whose point of view the latter part of the chapter is from. Not sure if you are trying to keep this a mystery or not. I guess it'll become clear. Ah, I've figured it out now; at least the name. It's still not clear what her relationship to the other characters is though or what her background is.

Like the mention of frost in July; it's sort of chilling.

And I REALLY like the way you portray her feelings - the darkness enveloping her, the sounds she hears. You really describe the whole thing well and give us an impression of how terrifying the entire situation is.

Very emotive story. You really capture the sense of danger and the whole dark atmosphere well.

Author's Response: Hi!

Thanks for pointing out the grammatical errors--I already went through and fixed them all. :D

Thanks for the brilliant review, it means so much as the first one for this novel! It put a big smile on my face, and I'm sure Missy will enjoy it as well.

Thanks so, so much!

-Janelle


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Review #75, by MargaretLaneAlbus Potter and Slytherin's Office: The Hidden Room

2nd May 2014:
Well, yes, with Zajecfer around, Albus's life could DEFINITELY change for the worse in the blink of an eye, though I guess Neville doesn't know about that. I wonder if that line is some sort of foreshadowing.

At one point Art says "as long as you know the Gryffindor's", when Albus says he is bad with names. Since there is more than one Gryffindor, the apostrophe should be after the s.

Hmm, so it looks like I may well have been wrong about the hidden room being a room where Zajecfer is hiding.

This room could well continue to play a part throughout your series, if the adults don't find out about it.

And I LOVE the suggestion that it could be where Hogwarts began. I've been actually reading some stuff lately (long story) that involved the opening of the Sisters of Mercy's schools in Ireland and it was talking about how a lot of the secondary schools started in a room or a couple of rooms in the convent, back in the 19th century, when not many people went to school beyond the age of maybe 12 or 14. I really like the idea of Hogwarts starting off much smaller than it finally became.

*laughs* With the chapter called "The Hidden Room", being near the end of the story and when it began with Albus talking about how he wanted to begin brewing the potion, I assumed they'd find out where Zajecfer went by the end, but no, I've to wait a little longer. I guess it can't be MUCH longer though.

Rose says "Aunt Hermione brewed Polyjuice Potion in her second year." I think she'd say "Mum".

Looking forward to seeing what they find out.

Author's Response: Just about anyone's life can change quickly. Neville might have not been changed very quickly, but he went huge character development. Neville knows better than most.

Good point about the apostrophe thing. I didn't catch that.

Yes, I'm very excited about their secret room. It definitely can be used throughout the series, I'm already planning for its usage.

Yes, the chapter title was a little misleading. That was planned.

I doubt Hogwarts was as big as it was now. Where would the get the funding? I suppose one of the founders, or all, could have been rich, but they probably didn't know how sucessful the school would be. I like the idea of Hogwarts Castle evolving over the centuries.

You don't have to wait much longer. The exciting things start happening in Chapter 24.

Yes, Rose would say "Mum". Good catch! I usually just notice grammar and spelling and things.

Thank you for reviewing! Every review you leave brings another smile to my day. :)


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