Reading Reviews From Member: Aphoride
  
567 Reviews Found

Review #26, by AphorideRise of the Phoenix: The Gathering Storm

29th January 2016:
Hey there, dropping by for our review swap! :)

So, wow, first off. This is an incredibly original story and I love the darker, more political side to the wizarding world from the books - it adds so much to the world JKR created without contradicting it, and it's so cool. It really shows in the little details, like the journalist writing about curse-breaking and the scars and things :)

I like Aurora's character, too - I like how she's this tough girl who makes her own way in the world, and thinks she can handle more than perhaps she can, certainly in terms of emotional issues. It's a really interesting combination - though I'd question whether her skin would really be so great, if she's often living rough. Even with magic, it doesn't work that easily ;) But yeah, her career and things are great - the bits where she talked about her brother and how she regretted leaving were really great, they added a lot of depth to her.

I loved the little hints at potential plot for the future - the mentions of Voldemort and the Death Eaters, Aurora's sense that something wasn't right about how her brother had died, then the attack on the train... it was all very mysterious and spooky, and really kinda leads towards something big being happening, which I love :)

Your writing is really great, too. You write action amazingly well - the scene with the attack was so well done and so realistic, with the teeth and the screams and the father and Theo throwing themselves into the fray. I loved the introspective sections too - the emotions came through so beautifully in those, which really brought this to life so much - and your dialogue is so, so good I'm almost jealous :P

Little quibble: the wand-destroying-Expelliarmus... the only wand destroyed in the series is Lucius' by Harry using Voldemort's skill. I can't really believe that a simple Expelliarmus could do the same thing, given it's a disarming spell :/ But ofc, feel free to disagree! It's the beauty of ff after all ;)

Anyway, this is a really, really great start to a hugely original story and I'm so glad we swapped so I got a chance to read this! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Wow Aph, cheers for the lovely feedback. It is so heartening to read. I love writing Aurora, so I am delighted you were able to stick with her in the chapter.

Oh, and your quibbles are valid ones. My only defence is I imagine his wand is a homemade-y type of wand rather than an Ollivander classic.

Cheers for all the nice words, I really like your writing too, I should have a review up once I have had some sleep.2am where I live ;)

Nick


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Review #27, by AphorideStranger: 7 Years Old

29th January 2016:
Hi there, Kaitlin - dropping by for our review swap! :)

I really wanted to drop on this, because it sounded so original and interesting - I've only ever read one one-shot about Millicent before this and it was totally different to this one, so I was so curious to see what you did with her and how you portrayed her - especially because it said it was for the non-cisgender challenge :)

I love how you characterised her. Though we don't see that much of her personality in here, I loved how she hated pink and didn't want to wear the dress robes, wanted to wear green and black instead. There's something so sad about her hiding the robes and hoping Tinka doesn't find them so she doesn't have to wear them, when her mother insists that it's what's going to happen. It's little things, but it makes me so curious to see how you take her through the journey as she grows up and realises about herself, and everything which comes with it.

Your writing is really lovely in this - your dialogue is so great and really suits the characters, especially the mother. I love the differences you used in describing the two of them - it really set them apart, which was so clever.

Gah, I'm so sorry for the short review, but I'm really curious to see where you go with this, and what happens next! It's a really lovely beginning! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hey Aph!

I was so excited to have an opportunity to write for the Non-Cisgender Challenge because although I strive to write diverse characters, I realized that Non-Cis characters are an area that I've had a blind spot.

This first chapter here is just a brief flash of Millie as a child and in each chapter she will get a bit older and things will become more clear. I've seen that even young children, while perhaps not completely aware that they are transgender, can be aware of not feeling like they fit in traditional roles. That's how I imagine Millie at this stage. Not liking the traditional role of a girl in a Pureblood family. As she gets older, she will begin to understand more clearly that she has always been a boy.

Dialogue is always a weakness of mine. I have a tendency to be too formal. This does however usually tend to work for older Purebloods, so perhaps I just got a bit lucky there. :D

That's okay. It's a short chapter.

Thanks for the review swap!

~Kaitlin


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Review #28, by AphorideLike Sunflowers: Like Sunflowers

29th January 2016:
Hey there - dropping by for our review swap! :) I gotta say, I do love Neville/Hannah - there's something wonderfully sweet about them, you know, and I love the idea that there's so much potential with them.

I love how you've written them here - with Neville being so down after the war, and Hannah kinda bringing him back from that, and how their friendship blossomed through the DA meetings. It's so realistic and I love the slow, almost tentative but kinda clinging pace of it - it makes sense that they'd be drawn to people with shared temperaments and experiences, and that they'd both perhaps not want to rush things, you know. It really sinks this story into the fact that this is after a war, you know, and that they all have scars from it - that they were all so young.

It was so sweet, and I loved it - you wrote them both so beautifully, especially Neville. I liked how he was more confident than in the early books, but still reminiscent of the beginning years, where he was more nervous and anxious - it makes sense that he'd perhaps slip back a little after the war. Hannah was amazing, too - I loved how she wanted to be friends with Neville from almost the beginning, and how she had such a great sense of hunour and things. She's such a lovely character.

The little mentions of the Trio were so good in this, too :)

Your writing in this was so lovely - it flowed so well and it's so clear and beautiful, and such a lovely style.

Thank you so much for the swap - it was so great! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hello there!
I really like Neville and Hannah together, and think that they'd really be drawn to each other after the war ended. Since we don't see them ever interacting in JKR's writing, that made me think that they really didn't connect until after leaving Hogwarts. Since they had both been through such a difficult, life-changing experience, I think that would immediately draw them to one another. They both know what it's like to fight for their beliefs, and to lose people because of it.
I think Neville would have really grown during the war. He's leading the resistance in Hogwarts, and has to be brave as an example for everyone else. I don't think he'd really lose that confidence, so I wanted to make him a little more sure of himself here than he is when we see him in the books.
I'm glad you liked Hannah! I really like her character, and had a lot of fun thinking about her personality and her family life and things like that.
Thank you so much for the swap, and for leaving me such a lovely review! I really appreciate it!
Cassie :)


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Review #29, by AphorideThe Twelve Days of Christmas: Victoire

27th January 2016:
Hey there, Stefi! :) Stopping by for the BvB Battle on the forums! :D I hope you don't mind that I stopped on this, but it looked so good and I've heard so much about it on the forums, so I was so curious to finally actually check it out :)

And really, I'm so glad I did. This is so good and so sweet and so, so funny! It's a perfect little story with the kind of tale I can imagine Teddy bringing up time and time again when little Nymph gets older :P It just has that kind of feel, you know - the kind of timeless humour, which is so hard to do and so clever :)

Also, as a side-note: I love that their daughter is named Nymph - it's such a sweet and fitting gesture, and I love how much it says about their characters, too, without actually having to say anything ;)

All the little details in this were so good, too - the way Victoire made the dress herself and the comparison of baby!Nymph to a Christmas ornament :P How Nymph is a metamorphagus like Teddy, and how they panic so much when they can't work out exactly what's wrong with Nymph - it's so true to life! :) I absolutely loved the last bit, with Victoire writing the Christmas cards, with the pictures - it was such a great bit, and so perfect to end on!

Your writing in this was amazing, too. I think I said this is in a previous review, but really, your writing is so beautiful. It's just so clean and so perfect - how you get it to flow like that, I have no idea! Share your secrets, plz??? :P ;)

This is such a beautiful little story - I absolutely loved it! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hi Aph!

Thanks so much for the lovely review!

I'm glad you find this fun and cute!

I have always thought that Teddy would name his children after his parents. He has a daughter, so I named her Nymphadora, if it were a son, he'd be called Remus.

Eep, thank you so much for your incredibly kind words! It means so much to me because I think you're such a incredible writer!!

Thanks again!

Stefanie


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Review #30, by AphorideDesignated Mum Friend: 1.

25th January 2016:
Hey there, Claire! :D Dropping by for the BvB! :)

Okay, so I've seen this around the forums the last couple of days, and I really wanted to read it so bad - and luckily uni slacked off on me in time so I could jump in the BvB behind you and grab this :P So I'm here! :)

I love the start of this! I think it's so super true that there are always guys/girls who are the 'dad' or 'mum' of the group, and it's a huge responsibility, you know? I did that for some friends, once, and it was crazy! Helpfully distracts you from your problems, though... but anyway, back on track: I think it's a very real phenomeon and I love that you're exploring it in fic because I think it's very rarely seen outside of real life, you know? It's a part of life which just doesn't get talked about so I'm so excited :)

I love the way you've immediately started it with this, showing exactly what it means, you know? And how she has a job which is taking care of people, too, so it's kinda all she does - it sets up so beautifully and so simply, but not obviously, for something to go wrong and for her to find it getting so much harder :/ She's such an interesting character, with her insistence that it's fine, that she can sort of do anything, and it's such a true and human flaw.

I keep repeating myself, haha, but realism is something I love so much because it makes everything so much more interesting and difficult, you know? :P

Your writing in this is so lovely, and you have such a great set up. I love how you used the different sections - and your writing in this was so flawless, it flowed so perfectly and really, there's not much more to say than that :) I've read bits of your writing before, but I didn't remember it being this good, which is a major fail on my part.

So. Final bit: you're going to have to update this, and I'm going to have to come back. Capiche? ;)

Aph xx

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Review #31, by AphorideA Story for Bedtime: Up the stairs to Bedfordshire

20th January 2016:
Hey Andrew - dropping by for the BvB Battle! :)

So I sort of looked at a bunch of things on your page before this one, but it sounded so cute and so sweet that I kinda had to stop by, so I hope that's okay! :)

And, really, this was so so sweet. You capture the whole father-daughter relationship so perfectly, and it's so beautifully told with the story winding its way through it and the little background details about Rose and her room and why her room is how it is, and the throw-away phrases in little-child-esque language. It's such a beautiful piece because of that, and the characterisation of all of them - Ron and Rose, and Hermione too - is just so, so good. I have no idea how you write canon characters like you do because I'm always so nervous about approaching them. Really, it's pretty incredible.

I absolutely loved the whole bedtime story he actually told her, too, how he twisted the truth of the events into this big, great adventure for her, and how she insisted she wasn't frightened, but pulled the covers up and things. The way you manipulated the Norbert incident from canon was so clever, and so funny, because we can appreciate the lie for what it is, but also we know that it is a lie, you know? And it is just so in character for Ron to do that with stories from his own life :P

Your writing in this was so lovely, too! The language was so right for both Rose and Ron, and nothing sounded weird or out-of-place at all. You have such a lovely style, and such a gift for world-building and action story-telling and it really shows here.

This was a really, really cute one-shot and I'm really glad I read it :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Thanks for the lovely review and I thank the BvB for bringing you to me. It's always OK to get any review on anything, I have a lot of love for this story and appreciate the kind words everyone always says about it.

I've said before that I did cheat a bit with the writing on this story - I did crib a lot of it from my own experiences raising my own wonderful daughter. Like the story, my daughter even had a painted Dragon on the wall behind her bed.

And thanks for the wonderful words on my characterisation - it is blush inducing indeed. I can never get the stories that have Ron turning out all nasty, I just never saw that in his character at all. I've always thought that of the three of them he had the most certain future and also the most nebulous. Not for him the certain career path that Hermione and Harry were sure to have, no that sort of thing was never important to him - based upon my reading of the character. Instead I always thought that he valued family more than anything and once he had a son or daughter then that would be his career.

You should know about how to weave an old tale into something new; you are doing it so ably in you own story Sweetheart Tom, after all. One of the tricks is to take the old tale that everyone knows and change it subtly so that it plays upon the expectations of the readers. They will think that the story will follow the path of the old tale that they know, so that twists in the tale will surprise them and catch them off-guard.

Again it is me cribbing from my life, I was always telling my daughter made up fairy tails, lifting events from our lives, films she'd seen or books we'd read. Using them, changing them to fit in with the moral that I wanted to deliver with the tale. I always thought that Rose's strong character would come partly from the example of her own strong mother, but also from her father's encouragement.

Thanks again - I'm still blushing - I always second guess all the stuff I write, I never know if I have hit the right tone with what I do. To have someone like you, who are a consummate word-smith, tell me that my efforts have value means so much to me.

Believe me, I'm glad you read it too. Thanks.



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Review #32, by AphorideShenanigans and Hi-Jinks: Back to the Forest

5th January 2016:
Branwen! :D So I have a little bit of free time (maybe that's a lie, but ah well? :P) and I saw you in the BvB so I just had to jump on it and stop by this again, because I love this story so much - also, to kick you to update asap! ;)

Okay, so you know I love your characters - your Victoire and Fred are so, so great, and I know I'm repeating myself here but I can't really get over just how real they are. Like, their conversations and interactions are so true to life for best friends who are cousins/close relations, and it's so so great. It works so well with this story and it really makes a whole lot of the dynamic of this, with their relationship. Hehe, I actually laughed out loud when Victoire told Fred the thing about the smile - he's a closet romantic isn't he? :P Poor lamb! ;) But it is very sweet, and I like that you've swapped the general stereotype around - that the main girl is not super romantic, and the main guy is.

I love the world you're building in this, with the creatures and the backstories to the different species and how they work and the ways they communicate with people and so on. I haven't read too much of your stuff in this 'verse (though I've started Wrinkles) so I don't know if you do this all the way through it (though I imagine so ;)), but it's so so good and I love that kind of super in-depth detail and information. It's so so impressive! :)

I'm really curious to see what happens now Victoire has been given the comb and what else they find out about banshee's powers, and so on. I just love the lore you're building into it, and I'm really kinda scared to search it in case I find something, haha :P I'm so looking forward to (hopefully!) if/when she asks Goldstein about it, because he's such a great character - you really have this knack for everyone in a story, no matter how little time they have, being so well rounded, you know? - and what the staff in general will - and, of course, what the banshee will do other than float around mysteriously in the forest and gift random students her mother's possessions :P

As always, your writing is so lovely - it's so clear and clean and beautiful, and it flows so well. You write action so perfectly, with that right balance of description and dialogue and it's so so good :)

Looking forward to the next chapter already ;) (Soon, yes? Please? :P)

Aph xx

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Review #33, by AphorideCinnamon Bun Day: Cinnamon Bun Day

4th January 2016:
Hey there - dropping by for the BVB battle! :)

So I have a huge soft spot for Bill/Fleur - there's something so fairytale-like about them, you know, with the whole beauty-and-the-beast (after his encounter with Greyback, at least) aspect to them, which I just love, and so I really love how you played on that in this with the whole little-red-riding-hood theme. It's so cute, but so appropriate for them - and the whole scent theme tied into it was so good, too; I loved the little nod it gave to Bill's wolfishness after the Greyback incident :P

Your characterisation of both Bill and Fleur was so great - I loved how neither of them was shown as weak or timid or anything, but they were both strong and obviously capable, and how Bill was brave enough/unafraid enough of wolves to walk straight through the middle of the forest (it was such a great tie-in to the fairytale, too!), before finding her on the other side.

You say this was written a long time ago, but your writing in this is great - if it was, I can't wait to see how you've improved in the years since! - especially the way you use the senses, the touch and feel and the sense of smell, with the cinnamon and perfume. It's so lovely, because I think people often forget about other senses, you know, but you use them so well in this and it's so great!

This is a lovely little one-shot! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: If you think there's something fairy tale like about them, then this was definitely the story for you.

This was written about 7-8 years ago for a challenge at TGS, but I don't remember what it was, if it was fairy tale, scent, or color. I do know I wrote it as an exercise in using senses.

Thank you so much for the very nice review and I'm glad you enjoyed the theme and characterisations.


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Review #34, by AphorideIntruder: Fear

1st December 2015:
Hey Kaitlin! :) I hope you don't mind I stopped by on this - you updated so much recently, and this looked super interesting and somewhat underloved, in a way, so I thought I'd stop by :)

And wow. Wow wow wow. Am I ever glad I stopped on this! :) This really is pretty spectacular - something like the back-and-forth challenge is incredibly, incredibly hard to do, and you do it so, so well. I've seen previous entries which are a lot more descriptive and sort of, well, abstract than yours is, and I think abstract stuff is easier to pull off as going back-and-forth but action... yeah, that seems so, so difficult, I'm so impressed you pulled it off - and even chose to go for it! :P

I loved how dark it is, too, how there's this real sense of fear, of trepidition, of anxiety which comes through it - and watchfulness, too, that Arthur always has to be careful, because something could happen almost at any time. It's a really true thing, I think, when talking about war, and living in a place during a conflict, and I don't think it gets mentioned enough about the wizarding wars, you know? So I'm so glad to see it in here, and this whole thing almost dedicated to it :) Plus, you write the emotions so well - I can feel Arthur's fear, you know, and how jumpy he is, how much he's checking over his shoulder, and so on. It's so real and raw, and it's really beautiful because of that.

You've written Arthur so well, too. Like, you've just completely nailed his character - with the whole family-oriented thing, and the wish (at either end) for them all to get through the war safely (and, of course, we know that doesn't happen, which adds a whole other layer to it). The little details you included in this are so great, too - the description of the night being haunted was so beautiful, and I loved the mention of even the portraits feeling the mood, in a way, and cackling manically as he passes. It just builds the whole creepy vibe, you know?

Also, I love how from one reading to the other, it changes the meaning - it's so clever and so subtle. Like, the ending of when you read it forwards is such a cliffhanger, but backwards, it ends with a far more angsty note instead. I love that. There's something lovely about it even the emotions being completely inverted too, when you read it one way and then the other.

This is a really great story! :)

Aph xx

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Review #35, by AphorideUnconfirmed Reports: [S1:E1] Pilot/"The Pluckley Anomaly"

1st December 2015:
Hey there, Kevin! :) Sorry this review is so late - uni has been brutal so far this year, and I've been intermittently injured/ill on top of it, so everything's kept getting pushed back further and further, but I'm here now! :D

I was so excited to read this - the Unspeakables are one of those branches of the Ministry who sound so fascinating because they're so mysterious and so unclear, and it makes me so impossibly curious, haha. So I love the idea of a story about them and what they do, so, really, this ticks all the boxes - especially because I'm a huge action/adventure/mystery fan too :P

The characters you establish in this are great - I love how the bureaucracy of the Ministry even slips into the Unspeakables, and how Hatch hates it so much - and how the Speaker is both so mysterious and so oily (and I love the little mention of him strangely not mentioning that they'd been overfunded, haha, and using the money instead for something completely different - even if useful. So true to a number of governments, I think). It just so perfectly encapsulates the kind of mysterious-yet-still-governmental nature of the Department of Mysterious, I think, and it's just so good and so real and so tangible throughout the whole section with it all in. Hatch is probably my favourite, just because of his voice in this is so strong and so sarcastic, and just so well done. It seems so natural in your writing, which tbh, imo, is a real gift - it's like humour, one of those things I think either you get or you don't, it's so hard to learn, really.

I just wanna talk about the details in this for a moment - it's so full of brilliant things, and the way you use the details to paint such a complete picture, from the scene at the beginning with the Department of Mysteries, to the middle with all the runes and the house. The runes especially - they were so in depth (Saxon runes, I think? Though I'm not sure... I looked up runes once, ages ago, for the sake of it, so it's been a while :P), and so good. Seriously, I loved that!

Your writing in this was so great, too. I've loved other things you've written, and this really is no exception. There's something so visual about the way you write this - like, you build pictures for me to 'see' in my mind and so on (if I'm not making sense, I'm sorry, I'm tired :P) - and every word fits so perfectly in the sentence. I love the balance between the voice, the action and the emotions in it, too, it's exactly perfect for the story you're writing and it all works together so, so well.

I love the episodic feel of it, too - though I do like a lot of sitcoms, and fantasy series, so... :P It's so good and so clever - I don't think I've seen something in exactly this kind of style before ever - and I really love how you've gone through the whole thing, with the introduction of the main characters, their first 'task', so to speak, and then the end of that segment, with the hint at the end of the next. It's a great little hook to have in it, and I'm so curious to see where it'll go from here :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Howdy Laura! Sorry for my egregious delay in responding to your awesomely detailed (and too-kind) review!

It's hard to answer it perfectly really because so much of what you've said is just hitting on exactly what I was going for, but it's really gratifying to read and see that it was coming across to you exactly as I intended. That starts with the weird secretive, but also still bureaucratic nature of the Department of Mysteries and the (oily is a GREAT word for him) Speaker. It certainly won't be the last we'll see of him and I'm intrigued to see what people think as his arc develops.

As for Hatch, TBH I was pretty worried people would find him TOO far - like TOO unlikeable, but so far I've been really pleased that his characterization has been well-received! Not least of which because if everyone hated him like I was afraid would happen, well...I'd sort of have to re-imagine the series... :p

Thank you so much for the all the kind words about my writing as well - I get a little...obsessive I guess is honestly the best way to put it...about the balance you mention because I'm just (for whatever reason) so convinced that in longer pieces being too imbalanced just destroys the work, but I'm glad rather than coming across as forced or formulaic (which I always fear a little given that quirk of mine) it came across as not just natural, but positive!

The episodic thing...WHOO...that's going to be an experiment. I was hoping to be able to regularly update last year, and then to fix a real schedule this year having finished Evolution, but as you may have heard, I'm nowhere near done with that. My plan as of now is to try and create 12 episode seasons (a season a year basically, with an update a month), though we'll see how that goes. I'm more committed to it now that it seems that everyone is pretty intrigued by the concept!

Thanks so much again for the spectacular review!


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Review #36, by AphorideLife Was Meant to Be Easy Now: An Unexpected Visitor

28th November 2015:
Hey there, Molly! :) Dropping by for our review swap - sorry this is a bit late; my laptop decided it had had enough of me putting off Windows 10, so I was somewhat forced into downloading it :P So yeah, that's why this is later than planned - anyway, I'm here now! :D

And first off - YES YES YES YES they're together again, and happy again! It took long enough ;) But nah, I like that they had all the teenage angst about everything beforehand - it made the reconciliation so much better! Plus, it's just way more realistic, you know, especially for teenagers :P I loved the way they made up so easily - almost like everything else was kinda forgotten, and how Scorpius' parents conveniently left them alone :P

Speaking of Scorpius' parents, I really love how you showed Draco and Astoria adapting so well to Scorpius and Albus being together - I think sometimes it does take something severe, like the attack on Scorpius, to make people realise how insignificant some things really are, and Draco did always, to me at least, seem like someone who would really care about his family, in the end, despite what it may seem like on the surface.

Your writing in this was lovely - I loved the introspective bits from Scorpius' pov, and all the emotions when he saw Albus again and realised his parents had delibertately engineered things to leave them alone for a long while :P As always your dialogue is amazing - you really have a knack for the voices all the characters have, making them so separate from each other and so distinctive :)

I'm so excited and curious to see where you go from this point, now they're happy and back together - to see if Scorpius ends up getting targeted again by the bullies, or what happens to them with their punishments and so on. You've left it at a really nice point, so I'm slightly worried it's all going to go south again :P

Gah, I loved it, as usual! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Thank you for swapping with me again! And thank you for a lovely review!

Yes, finally, finally, they're together, and happy again. As wonderful as it might seem, happiness is not forever. Albus and Scorpius are going to face other difficulties soon enough...

I'm amazed, and very proud, that you like my dialogue. My first language isn't English, so I'm constantly worried about what expressions and words to use, and I'm guessing a lot. So, thank you!!!

Molly


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Review #37, by AphorideThe Two of Us: Tension

20th November 2015:
Hey there, Gabbie - dropping by for our review swap! :)

So, I'm a huge sucker for George/Angelina - I dunno, I just love them for some unexplained reason, haha - and I'm always amazed by anyone who can write the Weasleys twins, so I was so glad you asked me to stop by on this one :)

Seriously, I'm so impressed with how well you write the twins. They're such intimidating characters, to me, haha, because they're so funny and so fully-formed in the books that I just don't think I could do them justice, you know, but you do them so well here. I love how you get the whole twin relationship thing into it, too, how they look so similar but have different personalities and temperaments and things - as an older sister to twins (non-identical, though) I'm always hyperaware of those kinds of things! :P

Your writing is so lovely, too - it's so evocative, you know, with so many strong words and ways of portraying things, especially emotions - which works so well in something like this when you're describing arguments and feelings and inner conflict and things. I love your dialogue especially, it's so clean and so good and so reminiscent of the characters in canon, too, which I love so much.

The only thing I'd say is that you tend to start dialogue in the middle of paragraphs a lot. Dialogue should always start on a new line, unless Person A is still speaking. Even then, sometimes that should be broken. I'm sorry, I'm not the best at explaining this things, but maybe ask someone to show you? (Or hopefully my attempt at an explanation makes sense :P)

Anyway, this is a really great start - I love how it starts in the canon moment, and after the whole Fred-asking-Angelina to the ball thing. It's a moment which we really don't see anything of in canon, and I love that you're using that to expand into this, and I'm so curious to see what happens next - what exactly Fred's told Angelina, and how this all resolves itself :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hello!

Thank you a thousand times for this awesome review and I'm so sorry for just now answering this! I have been ridiculously busy lately and I haven't been really dedicated to answering my reviews and such.

I'm happy that you're a George/Angelina shipper! I really love this pairing and I have a few more stories with them if you were ever curious to check them out!

I have a little experience with writing the twins and they're really hard to balance out. I don't think that they should be written as being exactly alike because it kind of implies that they're not their own person. I can see what it's tempting of course but I never wanted to go that route.

I'm happy that their dialogue and interactions were great though because I was worried about that the most. I struggle with dialogue quite a bit and there were a few things that still bug me, especially about the formatting of them.

I wasn't really sure where to start this first but I wanted to play on the Yule Ball scene because you could actually build a whole story around it. The whole Fred/George/Angelina thing is something that I love playing around with and I hope you come back for the next chapter!

Lots of drama will happen!

Much love,

Gabbie


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Review #38, by AphorideThe Next Great Adventure: Chapter 1: Happenings

20th November 2015:
Hey there, Kaitlin! :) So glad to be stopping back on this again - it's such a fascinating interpretation of the afterlife and what happens, and your cast is really, really unique (I've only ever seen one other story with Dobby as a main character).

I really like how you started this with Dobby - I'm so excited that he's a pov character! :D - and how he's sitting there feeling so out of place. It's so harsh, but it's so true for Dobby - and for house-elves in general, I think - and it really adds to the tension too, to have the room so split and Dobby almost like an observer, just watching them all in their little factions.

I love the way you've characterised everyone in this - how Sirius is still kinda back to perhaps more of his pre-Azkaban state but still so reckless and excited and energetic and desperate for adventure and to protect Harry in equal measure. How Molly still thinks of Harry as so young, and doesn't quite trust Sirius (which, to be fair, I think she has a point in that!) with something important, and how they needle each other so easily still. Gah, it really shows where the tension in the room at the beginning comes from, you know? At least, partially. But it's so good - and so realistic, from canon, too.

The only thing I'd say character-wise is that I'm just super confused why Lily - who gave her life to save Harry originally - doesn't want to go and meet him. Like, I'd have thought she'd be right up there with James demanding to go, not sitting back and being quiet, you know? Ofc, it may well just be different interpretations of a character, in which case it's cool, but I just thought I'd mention it :)

I really like your writing in this, too. Your dialogue just amazes me - it's always so on-point for every character, and the voices are so individual. Like, I struggle so much with the Weasleys because its always seemed to me to be such distinctive voices they have and yet you write them so easily, it seems. How?! Share your secrets! :P

I'm so so curious to see where you go with this, with the tasks and everything, and how Harry and Dobby's relationship is and how that progresses through the story, too. Ah, so many exciting things to come! :)

Aph xx

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Review #39, by AphorideAll Right, Jinx: Fowl Art

20th November 2015:
Hey there - dropping by for our review swap! :) Okay, first off, I've got to say that I adore Jeeves & Wooster - I've seen the tv series more times than I can count - so I was so so happy when I read the beginning and realised what it was.

Admittedly, it took me a paragraph or two to realise, but then that's what I get for not looking too much at the summary and things, tbh :P But, I gotta say, I'm super impressed with how you did with copying the style, and capturing the era too - as well as the whole upstairs-downstairs dynamic, and how odd the friendship aspect of Jinx and Ariel's relationship is.

First things first, though - the style is just perfect. The whole way you write this is just perfect, especially for this story, set in this era. You manage to capture so much of Wodehouse's voice in this, while still making it your own, which is pretty incredible. Not to mention I love all the little slang things you get in there - what ho and things :P - and how the voice just fits the character of Ariel so well.

Your characters are amazing, too - I love the way you've taken Jeeves & Wooster and changed them into Jinx and Ariel. Like the writing, they're noticeably parallel to J & W, but they're still so separate and there are so many differences in it. I love how Ariel is so intent on having something mauve, haha, poor man, and Jinx is just absolutely stubborn in refusing to let him :P I'm so excited to see where you take these characters - if you keep them on parallel lines to J & W, or if you take them off their own way from this point :)

I love as well how you've adapted the era from J & W into the wizarding world, with Jinx being a house-elf rather than a valet, and with Muggles being a problem for purebloods - and the robes and sudden arrival via Floo. It's just so clever and the way you included them all in - I almost forgot that it was meant to be set in the wizarding world, haha, because it was just so fluid, you know? :)

Anyway, basically, I loved this. I'm favouriting and imma be back ;)

Aph xx

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Review #40, by AphorideOnce More: Once More

15th November 2015:
Hey there, Andrew, dropping by for the BvB Battle! :) So I really wanted to stop on this, because I always love reading people's entries for the Sink Your Ship challenge - there's something so beautiful and so sad about the whole idea of it, you know? And all the results are so varied and fascinating, too - so yeah, I had to stop on this, and I hope you don't mind! :)

First off, I'm really, really impressed with how you combined so many challenges into one story - it looks crazy, but it works so, so well. I especially love the way you've split Rose/Scorpius up (though, I dunno, they weren't quite so split, if they were never together - but I liked that, you know, there wasn't a relationship there, but feelings on his part - it made it much more interesting than the usual love triangle stories) in order for Albus/Scorpius to get together. There was something so sweet about Scorpius' discovery of his feelings, and something so brave about how he admitted them. Though I guess near-death experiences can do that to a person :P

I loved the way you characterised them all - though I'd have liked to see more the Rose/Scorpius interaction. I know most of the story isn't about them, but still it would have been nice to feel the break when they ended a bit more, you know? Albus' string of girls made me laugh, though I loved how easily they seemed to fall into a relationship and how easily they both accepted their, essentially, new-found sexualities, and how Scorpius was so afraid at the beginning - they're all such great emotions and you wrote them so well and so clearly, they came through beautifully :)

Your writing in this was lovely - you have a very lyrical, old-fashioned style of writing which I love - it reminds me a bit of Jane Austen's style with some of the word choices and things. Your description is great, too - the scene with the dragon was amazing! The only thing I'd say is you tend to use 'the' a lot to start sentences, especially in the same paragraph and it can get jarring. Maybe try changing it up a bit? But really, it's a small thing - your dialogue and everything is so good and so well done, it's really great.

Gah, I'm so sad about what you did to your characters - did you have to do that in the end? Really? Really?! You couldn't let them be happy, no :P Nah, but there was something sort of tragic about them all the way through which I loved, and I don't think a happy ending would really have worked half as well :)

This is a lovely, lovely one-shot :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Thank you for the review. After the initial flurry of attention the interest in this story died down so it has been interesting to revisit it with your fantastic review.

It was funny, I had the initial idea for the story based upon one of the challenges, then as I was hunting around the other challenges served to refine my idea; rather than limiting me, the restraints imposed by meeting the requirements of the other challenges was liberating.

Yes I know that they are not properly together, but that's the whole thing about a romance - the build up. In most romances the pair do not get together till the end; there is a lot of build up, a lot of too-and-fro that happens for ages before they can be together. That's what the two of them have and they just might be on the verge of something more, but then Rose - ever a victim of inertia in her ways of thinking - engages her mouth before her brain and it is all just gone in one instant of nastiness. So I know you said you would have liked to see more of the Rose/Scorpius interaction, but it is just the same sort of stuff that happens in a lot of Scoroses. Though I must say, that I do have an idea for an epilogue ...

Thank you for all the praise of how I wrote the burgeoning feelings of Scorpius, and to some extent Albus (though not as strictly delineated as the former). I realised that the time frame of the short story was a bit of a rush to have the feelings develop so fully, but I hope that my attempt to show that the feelings had been there all the time worked - they had just been buried under the surface and outdated notions of propriety.

I know I have such an old fashioned way of writing; I cannot help it, it's just the way that I write. I usually hope that it is not too jarring for a modern audience, so to have it described as a merit instead is wondrous. I thank you so much.

This story was largely unbetan, so errors like you have mentioned have crept in. I shall see about my over-use of 'the' and go back and try to correct them.

It was for an angst challenge after all and as I noted, if I had to sink my own ship, then every boat in the harbor was going to go down with them. Yes there was something tragic and doomed about them right from the start. That the two of them had subsumed their feelings for each other under different veneers: one under a love for a girl who would probably never love him back; and the other in a string of girlfriends, to somehow justify what his sexuality should be to himself.

Thanks for the review, that is the good thing about the BvB - it does so prompt one to review people that one has meant to.



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Review #41, by AphorideLet Perpetual Light: Symbols and Stories

14th November 2015:
NICOLE - I did say I'd be back soon! :P Got the chance to stop by again, so I'm not going to waste it! :) I've meant to catch up on this story for so long, so it's way beyond time! :D

This chapter... omigosh, where to start?! I love the letter from Gellert at the beginning. There's something wonderfully bitter and disdainful about it - and there's this beautiful way you have of writing it where his mind wanders so much, and goes off these little tangents, and at the same time it all feels half calculated, like he's deliberately trying to get a rise out of Albus, or get some kind of response. The last line - p.s. - was so strangely chilling. Gah, you're not going to break my heart with who killed Ariana, are you? Probably - I know you... ;) Wah, but I love the fact that you include it like another taunt - a little, final message just in case Albus has read it and isn't already annoyed :P

That story... Gellert's version of the three brothers tale - well, not quite his version, as such, but you know what I mean ;) - was so haunting, and so beautiful. I love the way you wrote it - it was so gorgeous and yet so obviously recognisable as a fairytale-style story - and how you incorporated the elements of the hallows into another tale, but one which is drastically different. I'd never have thought of that before, and I've never seen it before, but I love it! It's such a clever, unique idea - I'm almost jealous I didn't think of it first :P

Speaking of that, I love how Gellert's reason for telling it to Albus is that Albus likes stories - it's pretty manipulative, but so simple, and perhaps all the more powerful because it's simple, you know? Also, I love how it portrays Gellert definitely as appearing harmless, when he's so very obviously not, as we know, with the whole 'juvenile delinquent' aspect of it.

Also, dat duel, man. I know it was only playing, really, for both of them, but I loved how they end up being so evenly matched - it's a kind of jolting result after kinda knowing from HP that they're so evenly matched, and then Gellert mentioning in his letter that he surrendered after twenty minutes. It sort of comes full circle, almost, in a way, I guess, which I love - I have a strange fondness for circular motifs :P

I really, really love how malicious and powerful and unstable your Ariana is. There's something both frail and yet completely dangerous about her, and it's a brilliant combination. I also, as I think I've mentioned before?, love how you've turned her into more than just a damanged little girl. It's, again, like almost everything about this story, such a unique take on her, and it's so amazing, and so well-crafted it's incredible.

I love the little childish moments with Gellert and Albus dotted throughout this, intersperced with those moments where they appear so much older than they are - when Gellert steals the greengages simply because they're sweeter and he can, where they end up running through the rain together and when they're coming up the path and Ariana's watching them, like they've been friends forever, almost. It's sweet, which is almost a strange - but lovely - thing in this story, with all the tension around it :P (But they're still adorable! :P)

That ending, as well, with that last line... wow. It really vamps up the tension again, makes it feel as though the battlelines have already been drawn, so to speak - almost like this is the point from which nothing can go back. Gah, you're waaay way too good at this mood-setting stuff :P

Loved. It. As you know ;)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Oops, sorry about how my last response ended! *hides* I hit "Preview" and was intending to go back to edit, but clicked on "Submit" instead...gah, it's 7:30AM and I need to finish my coffee...

THank you once again for another brilliant review, Laura! ♥ And I apologise for taking ages to respond...I'm a terrible excuse of a human being.

Bahaha, I love writing Gellert's post-1945-duel letters a bit too much...I love writing his bitterness, his anger, madness, everything that infuriates him. And I love writing him taking all his issues out on Albus. Well, you probably know that his letters sort of lose focus and direction the more he writes. You're right, he is trying to get a response out of Albus, but he's also trying to resolve issues within himself. Things may or may not be resolved by the end of the story, but Gellert definitely knows something Albus doesn't. Am I going to break your heart about telling you who killed Ariana? :P I might tell you. :P I might. :P

Aww aww I'm so elated and so so relieved that you liked the other version of the fairytale. It was one of the things I was unsure about including in the fic; I did make it up :P And kind of based it roughly on the structure and logic of traditional folk tales.

I too love circular motifs. And these two don't really have a serious go at each other until...well until the end of summer of course. Still got to clean up that chapter and rewrite their skirmish scene, so re-reading your review really reminded me to do that... *hides*

I'm glad you see her as more than a damaged girl in this fic; that was one of my main things to explore in this fic, along with Albus and Gellert's teenage relationship. And I definitely see Ariana as someone who could have possibly turned out as brilliant and intelligent as Albus, were she not so severely affected by childhood trauma. Despite this strange internal world she inhabits, she does have plenty of moments of lucidity and is quite capable of planning things out very precisely. I think of her as a bit of a strategist (just like Albus) and a bit of a mystic as well.

Thank you once again for this brilliant review, Laura! ♥ ♥ It means so much to me that you're reading / have read this story, and I'm always so grateful for your feedback.

Much love and thanks ♥ ♥

-teh


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Review #42, by AphorideLet Perpetual Light: At The Churchyard Again

14th November 2015:
NICOLE! :D :D :D It's been far, far too long since I stopped by this story - and so, so regrettable that I haven't actually reviewed much of it at all (though I've read all of it so often!) so I'm stopping by to change that as much as I can tonight! :)

You know how much I love this story - or you should do, at any rate ;) - but I can't help but say it every time I stop by this, because, really, it is amazing. It's just... so entirely complete, you know? Like, an entire world in this story, it makes me forget that the world its in is JKR's because you've just taken it and made it your own so well, and so completely, and it's so, so good.

Also, there's this lovely sense of tension through the whole thing, which just puts me on edge and makes me wait for the unexpected - it's this lovely kind of mysterious quality which I can't quite describe, let alone even have any idea how to reproduce. It's an amazing skill you have, seriously! Your writing just really brings it to life - especially in that scene where Gellert and Aberforth fight, and Gellert steals his wand. The confusion you generate with that and then Gellert returning the wand and looking chastened is so clever and so mysterious - I really wanna know exactly what happened with that and why... but it's not necessary, you know? And it's just adding yet another layer to this, and it's so lovely! :)

I love your Gellert - the little tinges of violence, hints of madness and of danger with him, just beneath the surface. Though it kinda runs through all of them, though - the little strange moments with Ariana, just how unhinged she seems, in a way and at times; how frustrated and restless Albus seems, and how Aberforth seems to keep threatening to boil over. It's so very teenage in its way, you know? Like, the characters are so obviously young, but then the writing is somehow such high quality and so beautifully intricate, and I love how you've married the two together.

I love as well, how easily Albus' mood is lightened by meeting Gellert - there's something so telling about it, even though character-wise, he doesn't know, but we do - and how sceptical he is at the beginning about the tale of the three brothers and how it connects to the Hallows.

As always, your writing is just stunning. Seriously. I know I keep saying this, but tbh, I don't think it's ever going to get old or useless or worn out, so... ;) imma keep going :P Every wood seems so perfectly chosen in all of your stories, and the style you bring to them, the feel and everything, is just perfect for each one. I really, really don't know how you do it - but you're just so flawless, and it blows my mind each time! :)

Okay, so I already know what happens next (bad Aph... :P), but I love the sense of curiosity you give each chapter end - it's not quite a cliffhanger, as such, but I still want to read on so so much! I remember reading it for the first time and being so, so incredibly excited and curious and almost desperate to see what happens next, how Albus and Gellert and Aberforth and Ariana grow as characters, and how the relationships between them all develop.

This is a perfect, perfect story and I'm so sorry I wasn't back before now! Love it; as always! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Eep Laura! ♥ ♥ ♥

So your opinion of this fic really really really matters to me because you are like THE Albus/Gellert shipper of HPFF, and you write them so much and gah your versions of them are flawless, wand puns and all... :P So this review of yours is a real treasure to receive, thank you, thank you, lovely! ♥

I'm glad you like Gellert! Favourite character to write, next to Ariana! And you're absolutely right, every character in this fic is a little craycray...too much fiddling about with power, too much dabbling in the realms of magic that they don't understand well enough.

And I love what you said about the characters being so young...and therefore justifiably whiny, but that the fic doesn't get too bogged down in their angst...hopefully not? :P


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Review #43, by AphorideThe memories in your biscuits: The memories in your biscuits

14th November 2015:
Hey there, Chiara! :) Dropping by for our review swap! Sorry it's a bit late - got swamped with uni work in the last couple of days, unfortunately, but I'm here now! :D

I really love this one-shot - how it goes so deep into McGonagall's psyche and her friendships with so many other people, all revolving around the biscuits and this kind of chain of links from section to section - which I loved so much! It's such a clever idea to connect them all with the overarching thread of the biscuits and the emotions and things through it.

Your characterisation of Minerva is so great, as are all the other characters. It's such subtle, great, canon-exact characterisation, and it's so amazing. I'm so impressed - Minerva is one of the hardest characters to do, imo; the idea of writing her terrifies me! :) All of the others were equally great - I loved how you didn't always mention their names, but we still knew who they were - it's a real skill to do! ;)

Your writing is so lovely in this, too - so clear and so powerful and evocative. Your description is so, so good - seriously, it just paints pictures. It's so great! :)

Thank you so much for the swap - I'm so glad I got a chance to read this! :) Sorry again for the lateness!

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hi Laura!
Thank you so much for the swap (and no worries about the lateness!)

Oh, wow! So glad you enjoyed the story, and how the biscuits' theme linked all scenes together! A lot of people found the jumps in time confusing, so I'm glad you liked the structure!

I would never have dared writing Minerva if it wasn't for the prompt I received for the challenge. I was so thrilled because it was about Remus, and he his my absolute favourite character! But instead of focusing on him, my muse came up with this... Not sure how it happened...

Oh, thank you! I'm so glad you liked the characterization, and that all characters felt recognizable and spot-on, even when I didn't explicitly nominate them!

And thank you so much for your positive comments on my writing and description, too! Description is something I really struggle with, but I think I've really matured in that aspect (HPFF is a great place to improve oueselves). Anyway, thank you so much! It's such a huge compliment for me, especially coming from someone as talented as you are!

Thanks to you for swapping and for this absolutely amazing review!!! It really made my day!!!

All my love,
Chiara


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Review #44, by AphorideSpirited Away: First Contact

14th November 2015:
Hey there, Gee - dropping by for our review swap! :) Sorry it's a bit late - uni work kinda took over unexpectedly, but I'm here now! :D

This is such an enticing beginning - with the way it leaves us completely unsure of exactly what's happened - how she's got there, what kind of world she's arrived in, how she'll get home, what obstacles she'll encounter, and whether her appearance will mess things up there or not. I love the mystery you've put into it - it's so good! :)

The way you characterise Hermione (the original one, haha) is so good - I love the panic she has when she realises she's broken the Time Turner, and the curiosity and fear when she realises that she's paused and doesn't know what it does. They're such true emotions and they come through your writing so strongly.

Is it bad that I find the AU Snape just a little bit creepy? Like his whole Lockhart-esque personna kinda squicks me out with the way he talks to the kids, especially teenage girls :/ Although I kinda like that for his character, he doesn't lose the whole 'strange and creepy' part of his personality, if that makes sense?

The Snape/McGonagall bit made me laugh :P I know that's probably not your intention, but the idea of them in a relationship... wow! :P Kudos for going for such a rare pairing - it takes guts! ;)

Your writing in this is lovely, too - you convey the mood of it so perfectly, with the fear and the panic and everything. It's so, so lovely! :)

Thank you so much for the swap - it was great! - and sorry for being late, again! :)

Aph xx

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Review #45, by AphorideShenanigans and Hi-Jinks: Fruitless Research

8th November 2015:
Hey Branwen! :) Dropping by on this for BvB - I just had to stop back on this when I spotted you in it because I've missed this story, even though time to read and review has been short, so I'm taking this chance now ;)

So you know how much I love this story, but I think it says so much about how good you are as an author that even a chapter like this, where relatively (comparatively!) little happens in terms of plot and excitement, it still fills it out and I still love reading it. It's such a skill, to be able to make anything so interesting and engaging.

Also, though on the same lines, I love the characterisation you get through in this, and how it all develops - I love how Juliet is so easily excitable, and how we see more of Victoire's relationships with her friends and how they work. It's a lovely change from so much focus on Fred, and it really fills the story out so beautifully :) Plus, they're just such great characters - I love the differences in them all and how they're all so real - I know I've said this before, but it's true and it's something I always love :D

I'm so so curious with what's going on with the comb - the lack of information about it is seriously creepy, and makes the whole thing more creepy, you know, because there's just nothing... I'm so curious to know what she's going to do about it - if she is going to ask Goldstein and if she does what he's going to do/say about it. He doesn't seem like the type to just hand it over, without getting curious himself :P

I really, really, really want to read ahead - so you may see me back in a minute because I can't wait :P

This is an amazing story, as always! :D

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hey, Laura! Thank you so much - I know that this was a little bit of an action-lite chapter, and I'm glad it came across well regardless. Some of this is dealt with in the next chapter, but I don't think she's going to be able to avoid asking Goldstein forever, because there's not a lot written about it. (And, of course, it's much more amusing to write about than a book entry.) Thank you so much for your review! ♥

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Review #46, by AphorideTrapped: trapped

29th October 2015:
Hey there, dropping by for our review swap! :)

Okay, so I'm a huge Black family fan, and I find Sirius so fascinating as a character, so stories about him are always pretty good ;)

I was so excited when I started reading this (which sounds strange, I know :P) because the whole idea of Azkaban and how it effects people - and how it effected Sirius - is something which is so fascinating to me, and I love seeing people's takes on it. I'd never thought to connect it to PTSD before, but it makes so much sense now that I'm almost wondering why I never thought of it before :P

Your Sirius is so great in this! I love all the mentions to his friends - to the feeling of being trapped and the hatred and anger it brings up in him, the almost irrational thinking and desperate urge to get out. It's so realistic and so emotional, it's brilliant but also horrible because it really hits home, you know? It just really shows how bad things were for him and how difficult it was to be there, and it's so, so powerful.

Your writing is so lovely, too. You get all of the emotion out of this so well, and so strongly, too, without having to use cliches or overexaggerating anything. The language you use is so lovely, too - your description, gah. I loved the bit where you talked about the red of his room and the blood, and the connections there, they were stunning, and so visual, too.

(The only small thing I'd say is that it'd look better if the number 13 was written out - it kinda took me out of the story as it is? But it's kinda more of a stylistic thing, so... ;))

Gah, I feel like I've rambled a lot and not said very much, but the general jist is that I really, really enjoyed this. Well, enjoyed is the wrong word perhaps but you know what I mean ;) This is a great little story and I'm so glad I got a chance to read it! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hey Aph! Thanks for swapping with me! Sorry for the late response.

I'm really glad that this story got you thinking about Azkaban/its effect on people in a new way. And compliments on the way I write Sirius are my absolute favourite compliments to receive, so thank you! ;)

I'm constantly worried about my descriptions and that I don't use them enough, so your comments about that mean a lot!

(You mean like "thirteen" instead of "13"? I can do that.)

No, you've said a lot of really nice stuff! I'm glad you (for lack of a better word) enjoyed this, and thanks for the lovely review!

-Kayla


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Review #47, by AphorideConstant Vigilance: Nymphadora

29th October 2015:
Hey Anja, stopping by for our review swap! :)

I'm sorry for stopping by this one - I would have done your top one, but it's super long (though it looked so interesting!) and it's late here and I'm super tired (blame uni!), so I'm here instead - sorry! *hides*

I really love this, though - even though it's a pairing I'd never have thought of before, let alone liked! - the way you write it is so simple and so lovely, you know? Like, you don't overload it with frills or with sappy dialogue or phrases or anything, it's just there, and the emotion comes through so perfectly. It's a real skill and you've just nailed it here - it made me smile so much, and that's not something I say very often about writing ;)

Your characterisation is so on point here. Tonks and Moody are two of those characters who intimidate me because their personalities and habits and things are made so clear in canon - but obviously they're not so scary for you, because you do them so well. I love all the little mentions of Tonks being clumsy, like when she thinks maybe she should have gone to work with dragons haha, and how she falls over in her flat. The little mentions of Charlie was gold, too! :)

Like I said above, your Moody is amazing. I love how you got the catchphrase in so cleverly, too - it's such a great line to end it on! And I really love how you didn't have to mention who either of them is in the actual text - like, no names - because we know without needing it.

Poor Tonks, though - Dawlish sounds like a terror to work with! :(

Ah, I'm so glad I read this - it's such a lovely little one-shot, and it's just so so good, you should be super proud of this if you're not already, coz you hit it out of the park on this one, imo ;)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hello Laura,
OMG I'M SO SORRY. It has taken me ages and ages to get here and reply to this. and I STILL HAVEN'T COMPLETED THE SWAP! I'M SO SORRY *hides*
I'll get to it as soon as I can.
Oh, it's okay that you picked this story. I would have loved to hear your thoughts on my other story, too, but I really appreciate every review equally, and I love hearing what people think of this story in particular, because it's so unconventional.

I'm so glad you enjoyed this! I didn't really think about this pairing much before writing this for Rose. I know she liked it and she once said that there are not enough stories with this, that's why I wrote it for her.

oh, trust me, these characters scare me a lot. this story was really hard to write.
I really tried hard to leave the names out, these characters are recognizable enough without names.

I was actually very insecure about this, (I don't even know if Rose ever had the time to read this), and to hear someone who is as amazing as you are tell me to be proud of it really means a lot!! Thank you so, so much!

let me just say again how incredibly sorry I am that I haven't completed our swap yet. I have remembered and thought about it and felt bad about it quite a bit, but my life has just been so crazy lately. I promise I'll get to it soon.

6hearts; Anja


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Review #48, by AphorideThe Next Great Adventure: Prologue: An Old Friend

29th October 2015:
Hey there, Kaitlin! :) Dropping by for our review swap!

So I haven't actually seen that many stories about a kind of afterlife thing, which I think yours will be from the summary, and none at all with Harry as the main character, so it's kinda already unique in that way ;)

I like how you start it with him in bed and him knowing that he's going to die - I think it fits in really well with him being the master of death, and all, that he knows, you know? It was such a gentle kind of acceptance that he had that it was time for him, and I thought it was interesting that he didn't think about any regrets or favoured/treasured memories which are usually the 'normal' kind of thing people include in scenes like that. It was a nice change, in that way.

Your Harry is so good in this, even though it's just a little glimpse. It's so lovely, and so impressive! :)

I'm so so curious to see what happens next after this, since this was just the prologue - how things go for Harry in the afterlife, what happens, and how Dobby ties into it.

This was a really well-written chapter, too - I loved the kind of peacefulness there was in it - and your descriptions/abstract section at the beginning of this was so lovely! :)

The little bit with Ginny joking about Harry lying in bed all day was so true to form :P Your characterisation is stellar for such short appearances (so far!)! :)

Aph xx

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Review #49, by AphorideThem: Them

26th October 2015:
Hey there, Gina! :) Dropping by for our review swap! :)

So I think this is the first thing of yours that I've read, which seems like such a shame now - you write so beautifully and I could have been reading your stuff for so much longer!

This was so, so good! It's just so delightfully creepy, and there's this whole sense of tension, like you're waiting for something, throughout the whole thing, which is so great, and just sort of amplifies the suspense from the short sentences and the storyline.

Ah, your characters are great. I loved how you tied them all into it - no one was random or out of place, even if they seemed like it at points (I did wonder what else James had to do with it at the beginning of the story when he sort of vanished for a while), and it just... gah, Albus was so well done. I loved the whole psychopathy element and how he's not safe, he's not cured, but he kinda thinks he is - even though perhaps he's not entirely sure? He and Soleil are just that perfect blend of out of control and yet in control, if that makes sense.

Your writing is gorgeous in this too. I'm not usually a fan of kinda stripped-down writing in this sense, but you pull it off so, so perfectly. Seriously - it's amazing! :) The style you've used is so right for this, and so clever, too - the way you've put the sections non-linear; it's so good! I'm always in awe of people who can do non-linear things because it's so so hard!

Ah, this is such a beautiful one-shot - though admittedly, incredibly creepy and twisted! I'm so so glad we swapped and I got a chance to read this! :)

Aph xx

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Review #50, by AphorideThe Way Out of the Maze: The Way Out of the Maze

25th October 2015:
Hey there, Chiara! Dropping by for our review swap! :)

This is a really lovely, really sad one-shot. I love how, though, there's this lovely thread of friendship and sibling companionship and so on throughout it all - it's not something you see very often in fic and I love that there's something of an emphasis on that in this :)

Speaking of that, the way you did Ariadne and Zach's relationship was so great, as well as their individual characterisations - they were both such rounded characters, and so different, too, and I loved how you showed us a different side to Zach, being a cheeky, happy kid - it was so great! :)

Your writing in this was so lovely, too - your descriptions are so beautiful and give this lovely, dreamy quality to the story, especially the beginning with Theseus, and how much Ariadne loved him. The emotion really seeped through so beautifully. I also really liked how the progression of their relationship was so natural, if terrifying, through the whole thing - none of it felt weird or strange for the people, you know? It fitted, and you could sort of see it evolving as the characters did. It was scary, but so well done.

Also, you dealt with the subject matter so well. It's such a heavy topic, and so difficult to do and do well, but you really did - it was solemn and heavy, and so happy in the beginning, but you did the change so well, and made it so clear that it was such a toxic situation to be in, but also that it's not always easy to get out of, which I also appreciated a lot.

This is a really, really great one-shot - you should be super proud of it! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hey, Aph!
Oh, wow! Thank you so much! *blushing*

I felt so unsure about the theme and the way I wrote it... so it's such a relief you felt I did it well! :)

The first idea for the story (creating a sister for Zach and of depicting him in a different light) came from Kristin, actually! In her piece she focuses on his character and on how the war affected him (and obviously on his love for Ari). You know... if you're interested in getting a look... :P

Anyway, it's great to hear that you felt their relationship and their individual characterizations were done well! :D They are pretty different, but really love each other! I love to write siblings, must be because I don't have any and I really wish I did...

I'm also glad you liked the description, because it's something I really struggle with! And the progression of Ariadne and Theseus' relationship as well! It is pretty terrifying...

Thank you so so so much for this absolutely amazing review!!! I'm so thrilled you enjoyed the story so much!!!

Lots of love, hugs and kisses!
Chiara


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