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Reading Reviews From Member: Aphoride
530 Reviews Found

Review #51, by AphorideWords Unspoken: Words Unspoken

14th September 2015:
Hey there, Mikaela! :) Dropping by for the BvB battle - I hope you don't mind I stopped by on this, I just love reading the shorter stories because it's always so cool to see what people do with 500 words! :)

I love how you use the word limit so well in this to give us so much of a sense of what happened, without actually saying what Scorpius said to Rose, or telling us outright what happened. There's something so gorgeous about it, with the subtlety of the events, and the emotions just being let to keep going :)

I really like how you've characterised Rose, and developed her and Scorpius' friendship and relationship as the story went along. I like how she was so devastated by the end of their friendship and realising that she'd wanted so much more from him than just friendship, but she realised too late. It was so lovely how their friendship sort of ended, and Rose was left to be so alone, and regret so much that she hadn't said anything beforehand.

Your writing in this was so gorgeous, too - you do so so well to get so much emotion out of this, with the way you describe Rose's emotions and the scenery around with the lake and the cold and the water - the image of the ripples coming up to the shore was so lovely! I liked how you made the whole thing with the weather and everything feel so bleak and really emphasise the loneliness and the sadness Rose was feeling - it was so good! :)

I'm sorry this review is a bit shorter than normal, but this was so so lovely, I just ran out of ways to say it again :P

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hi Mikaela. Thanks for readng this story. I'm quite fond of it. And I agree, that it's quite coold to see what people do with 500 words.

I kept the story quite ambiguous, the event didn't matter as much as the emotions that it led to it. Its a hard place to be, between friend and something more, but Rose never really imagined the possibility that he wouldn't be there at all.

It was a fun piece to write and I loved the imagery of it. Thanks so much for your review.


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Review #52, by AphorideEvery Moon Wanes: Thinking Out Loud

6th September 2015:
Hey there, Manno! :) Dropping by from BvB! I'm so glad I spotted you in it (and had free time to drop by) because I've seen this around the forums and really wanted to stop by and check it out, so it's so great I got a chance! :D

I love Remus/Tonks as a pairing - they're so wonderful, really, and they complement each other so well, too - so I was so excited to see this was that. The way you write them is so good, too - there's this beautiful complexity to them both, which I love, and which really rings true with what I remember of them in the books, too. I love how you referenced Remus' 'too poor, too old, too dangerous' lines, too - the conversations in italics were so well inserted into the main body of the story, and just worked so well in getting it all across. You get Remus' character exactly, with his self-deprecating state, and always thinking he's not good enough for her but never quite thinking about what she wants - and how she keeps trying to persuade him of that. It's so sad, and so horrible that he's so convinced of that, you know, and you do so well at getting all those emotions of out it, through your writing - especially your description.

I also love the way you structured this. Like, it's not that common to split it up into sections with two separate timelines, in a way, which then combine together, you know, but it's so good and so well done, and I just love how you used it so further the story and to show the adorable moments of Tonks with her parents when she was young and things. It was just so sweet, and balanced out the angst in the main storyline so well.

I gotta mention her parents, too - I really, really loved how you kinda tied her parents' relationship into hers, in a way, and drew the parallels between them, because they really are there, and I just love anything which makes connections like that :P

Your writing in this was so lovely, too - you brought the emotions out perfectly in this, your description was so gorgeous. I especially loved the snippets when Ted was telling her stories, especially the one about the moon and the werewolves. I think that's the most beautiful description and explanation of werewolves I've ever read. It was so lovely! Your dialogue is so impressive, too - really, from this, it's impossible to tell you took a break from writing ;)

It's so great to see you back - especially if you keep writing things like this! ;) :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: LAURA! Hello! You have no idea how happy this review has made me. I squealed in the middle of a family gathering and everyone looked at me, and I couldn't explain. But yeah. Eek!

I love Remus/Tonks as well, and that made me so nervous about the execution and how they came off. I haven't really written about either of them before but I thought that it's about time I did anyway! So I'm super glad to hear that they worked out.

Also, the conversations in italics were last minute edits, and I did worry that they just dragged the whole thing out pointlessly. But, at the same time, I wanted a way to show Tonks's struggle so far, and explain why she was still fighting for it.

Oh, and the story about the werewolves is probably what I'm most proud of in this story. So you have no idea how happy I am that you liked it!

Thank you, thank you, thank you, for the awesome review! It means so much to me!


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Review #53, by AphorideTurbulence: Chapter 1

1st September 2015:
Hey Erin! Sorry the rest of our swap is coming a bit late - with the Dobbys and wrist injuries, things got a little bit delayed :/ I hope that's okay! :)

I really like with this story, how well you do at setting up the world around Astoria, and keeping it in line and merging with the world we know from the series. Like, the little things - the mention of Hogwarts and the sorting hat and so on, the letter from her mother saying that the Dark Lord had returned - they just give it this great sense of grounding, you know? It all fits in so well. Plus, it gives all these lovely details - like how to get into House Cartell, how their sorting system works (and it seems a lot less potentially argumentative, haha, than Hogwarts', though I guess rivalries and things would still exist), and that it seems so many founders had alliterative names :P

I like your Astoria, too - I really like how you've developed her from the prologue, and how you've shown the effect the potion has on her, in a way, by the contrast between her then and now. It's a really stark presentation, you know, when you compare the two, and there's something strangely unnerving about how almost monotone she is, with the potion making her so flat to how she was before. I also liked how clearly her experiences there had shaped her, with the two boys bullying (for lack of a better word, though it's incredibly light for it) the new girl - it gives her this interesting, brave side, and that was kinda the first time where it felt like more of her from the prologue was coming through, you know? Which makes a lot of sense.

I like the group you've set up around her, and how already we can see some of the conflicts sort of waiting for her - with her making a new friend she may have to defend, the possibility of her friends learning about her condition, the antagonists Durant and Fey and things happening there - and the threat of the Dark Lord's return in the background. It's a really lovely complex situation, you know, which I just love :)

I'm really, really curious to see where this goes - where you take Astoria after this, and how things develop for her in America. It's a really interesting start, and your characters are wonderful! :)

Aph xx

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Review #54, by AphorideTurbulence: Prologue

25th August 2015:
Hey there, Erin! :) Sorry for the late drop by - I got distracted by prep research for uni, haha (which is like a miracle for me :P), and the gym, but I'm here now! :D I'm so excited for this fic because I saw it in the Diversity challenge, but didn't know if it stood on its own, really (which is mostly my fault, I admit!), so I never stopped by, so I'm so glad you said this one! :)

I really love the way you've set Astoria up in this one - with the reason she's going to school in America, and her diagnoses and how she never sees her best friend again and just doesn't understand. It makes her, and her mother to an extent, too, a really sympathetic figure, because it's not her fault, you know? She's a kid, she has no idea what she's doing or not doing...

Also, I just love that you included bipolar disorder in this - it's something which touched my life, though not directly, and it's something which is never talked about in fic - disorders and things, illnesses, just never seem to come up. I love as well how in depth on it you're going, with the details about Astoria's actions, and I'm so curious to see where you take her with this, how the potion works and to what extent, and just what happens in America.

I love the way you portray her family, too, how her mother is the only one, really, to even sort of attempt to understand what Astoria needs and what's necessary for her, and at least seems to be willing to try - her dad just sounds so... stiff. Inflexible, kinda.

Your writing in this is so lovely, too - it's so clean and so clear, and so just good, you know? Like, everything's perfectly balanced and your description really suits the characters, and the voice you use for it just perfectly expresses the emotions wound up in the story. It's really, really lovely to read :)

This is a really interesting prologue, and a really interesting set-up (I love the super original reason for her going to America, and I'm so curious to see how the racial element ties into it, because that hasn't been mentioned so much yet ;)) and I'm really looking forward to reading the next three chapters! :D :)

Aph xx

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Review #55, by AphorideKeep Calm and Carry On: A Guide to Keeping Calm and Apparating

24th August 2015:
Hey again, J - I'm back for more of this! :D I did say it wouldn't be long... ;) Especially seeing as I actually read this the other day when I saw you'd posted it (and didn't review *hides* I am a bad Aph, clearly...), I really, really wanted to stop by :)

I love your Lorcan more and more with each chapter. There's something so refreshing about his absolute clumsiness and awful attempts at subtlety and information-wheedling. Though he does succeed, so perhaps there's something to learned from it :P He's not quite solely for comedy, but you give him this beautiful comedic turn which suits him and his traits, and the tone of this story so so well. It's something which I can imagine is really, really hard to do (I've never tried to do it personally... I'm too scared of humour, haha), so I'm so impressed by how easy it seems to be for you in this.

There were so many great bits and great lines in this chapter - your dialogue is just brilliant. Like, seriously. You've got this perfect sense of timing, almost, in writing which just gives all the lines such a kick to them. I think my favourite, though, was the exchange at the end with Branson and Erick about Lorcan going on a date with the opposition's aide - it was just so so funny! :D I really, really love how strong Lorcan's voice is in this, it really shines through, and it's so witty and so easy to read, you know? Like, I almost barely notice I'm reading as I go through, and I'm always surprised when I get to the end, because it's so genuine.

(I'm not sure that last bit made sense. Sorry :P)

I've got to say, I love what you're doing with the plot, and how you're winding this all around politics - it reminds me a lot of comedy tv shows (Yes, Prime Minister, mainly) about politics, which I love because it's so true and it's so understandable, you know? (Though don't think I didn't notice it seems very much based off American politics, which is okay... I can deal :P But I'm super into British politics, so feel free to pm me if you want to ask Brit-specific questions ;)) I love the whole run through it, with them having to deal with the meeting where the candidates put themselves forward - and I love having Hestia Jones in as a familiar name, since it makes sense some of the Order would still be floating around - and how Lorcan is sort of dragged along because he's the least imposing :P Poor guy!

I'm so so excited to see where it goes from here for the party and for Lorcan (and hopefully some starting hints of romance with Lily? *wink wink* *nudge nudge*). Next chapter now, yes? :P

(Also: I gotta say, I love that you gave Lily Celiac disease. My adopted grandmother (it's a long story, haha) has it, and I dunno, I just love it when authors include things like that - it helps with the realism, you know?)

Thank you so so much for the swap! :) As always, it was great!

Aph xx

Author's Response: Heya Aph! Sorry I've been such a failure in responding to this, and thanks for a great swap and such a wonderful review! (And no worries-- I read without reviewing far, far more often than I should! *hides with you*)

Aww I'm so excited about your response to Lorcan! He's honestly a joy to write, because I just critique everything that happens to him with some snarky aside. And then, if I notice there's something silly that could go wrong, I make sure it happens because I love inflicting pain on him. (Just kidding-- I love him! He's just too funny when I put him in weird situations, though!)

You totally make sense, and it's so great to hear that you find my dialogue funny! That's something I really worry about (probably because I find Elisabeth's dialogue the funniest thing in the whole world and am constantly humbled by their incredible talents) and it's really wonderful to hear that it's working for you. Part of this humor comes from all of the crazy, clashing personalities in this office, and how hard it is for them to work together!

I'm totally inspired by a lot of televisions shows for this, not only ones about politics, so it's cool that it's shining through! The Thick of It/In the Loop are my main inspirations, but I think that Parks and Rec bleeds through. Ugh, I'm sorry it's so Americanized! I was going to have it more British, but then I got lazy and went with what I know. :P I may hit you up if I try to flesh it out a bit more, though! Thanks for the offer! :)

Haha romance with Lily and Lorcan-- I think we can all tell how he is when dealing with that! He's such an awkward little pumpkin. He's got no game, as the kids would say.

I'm glad you think it helps with the realism! I wanted to get it represented at some point and this just seemed like the place to do it!

Hope you continue enjoying the story, and thanks so much for a wonderful review!!


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Review #56, by Aphoridefirst: first kiss

23rd August 2015:
Hey Carla! :) Dropping by for our review swap (and the BvB fest)! I'm so glad you posted it, because I really love this story, so it's so great to get a chance to come back to it :P :)

I really love Esme, as I've said before, and how you develop her. She's sort of fragile, but in the kind of way where she wants to be so strong, and wants to make herself so strong - almost cold - because that's easier than being weak or emotional and seeming weak, you know? Which is a really lovely and interesting way to take a character - it's not one you see very often! I always feel so sorry for her in ways in this story, but strangely not at the same time, too, because she gets a bad lot, it's true, but she sort of doesn't quite let it define her as such, and she manages to deal with it all extremely well :)

Your Albus is so amazing. I love how worried he was about her when she stopped writing, how angry he is that she was so close and never thought to stop by - yeah, he gets angry, but there's a lovely undertone of caring about it: that he was so worried and so angry because he cares about her, and it's something which is so true to life, too, which I love. And James... haha, yeah, I'm an older sister, and it's such an older sibling reaction, and I love it :P The angry, the irritation that someone, knowingly or not, has made your little sibling upset... yeah, it happens :)

Your writing in this is so lovely, as always - you have this wonderful way of describing things, and this brilliant, unique voice for Esme which I love, there's this kinda French twist to it which is so clever and so subtle but so right, you know, and it's all so so impressive. The other thing I love so much about this is how well you do at filling in the information between scenes, in the dialogue and the thoughts of the characters in the scenes we see. When you're skipping time as you do, it's so so important to get it right, the whole show not tell thing, and you do it so well here. I loved that Esme flees her parents' failing relationship, but can't quite see that hers with Denis could potentially go the same way, and how she works in England but never says to any of her Weasley cousins. It says so much in so few words, and I love it, really! :)

This is a wonderful story - but then you know I think that - and thank you so much for the swap - I really gotta keep up better with this! :)

Aph xx

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Review #57, by AphorideSilence: The Lake

20th August 2015:
Hey Kaitlin! :) Dropping by for our review swap! Okay, so I'm a bit of a sucker for canon missing moments, and I do love the Marauders - especially things which give different takes on events - so I just had to drop by on this; I hope it's okay! :)

I really like the spin you've put on this. It's really different to anything you've seen before. I like how Lily's so angry with James, and so fed up of him always in her space and following her and trying to make sure she's alright - almost like she can't stand that he cares, and it's an interesting way to take things, you know? I don't know if you intended this as such, but I love the way it's almost like Lily herself isn't a very reliable character - you describe her as refusing to believe James could be sincere, which is so fascinating for a character to have.

I really like as well, how it was only at the end that Lily got the peace she wanted, and James sort of finally understood the truth of things, and who to listen to when it came to girls :P It was a great moment of humour compared to the rest of it - which was quite a bit darker and a lot more solemn in a way than I expected, I have to admit! :)

Your writing in this was great, too - I liked the way you used the dialogue to show so much and the differences between their characters, and how much or little they understood of each other. There were so many lovely little details in this, too - I loved the moment with the flowers, and how Lily doesn't vanish them or something but hits them to the ground. It's a lovely image! :)

This is a really lovely little one-shot, and so fascinating, too! :) Thank you so much for the swap; I loved it, as usual! :)

Aph xx

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Review #58, by AphorideTraitorous Hearts: An Unwelcome Visitor

20th August 2015:
Hey there, Penny! :) Dropping by for our review swap! You know, it's strange, this is one of those things I've seen now and then around the forums, in updates and things, but I've just never stopped by, so it's so great to finally get the chance to do it now! :D

I really like the way you've started this off - there's a perfect mix of set-up and suspense. I'm always a big fan of beginnings which just drop you in amongst the story headfirst, so to speak, and this does it so right: the way the first thing is Draco arriving, and we're presented with so many questions through the narrative is just so so good. It's a great hook, and you use it so well :)

Your characters are great, too - I love your portrayal of Astoria. There's something so fascinating about the way you set her up as sort of being in charge/control of her family, and thus their future as a group, and how terrifying that must be, and so interesting to think on maybe how she grew up to be like that and why, you know? Already she's a pretty complex character, which I love because it makes the whole thing that much more alive and real and emotional, you know?

Draco was really good, too, in this - I like how you've brought out how much being a Death Eater effects him - how tired and gaunt from the stress and the fear it makes him. It's little things like that - the details - which make him feel so real, and so perfectly in-character, and make me feel pretty sympathetic for him.

Your writing in this is so great, too. I love how many little details there are in this - from the musing on the colour of her dress, which I loved, to the little things about the way the room looked, how Draco looked - and how complete they make the picture feel. It's so easy for me to imagine this so clearly, because of the description - it's all so so good! :) Another thing I love in this is the aesthetic of it - the way you create the feel of the pureblood society, almost like a kind of era; it really puts me in mind of the Victorians or the Edwardians, you know, with the kind of stiff, cold way of living. It's so brilliant, and so beautiful, and so clear too, which I love.

All in all, this was a brilliant start, and I'm so glad we swapped so I could read this - I've really, really enjoyed it! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hey! I totally know what you mean. There are several stories that I'm always meaning to go check out, but some of them I just haven't gotten to. My list is a mile long.

Those are my favorite type of beginnings, too, so I'm really glad you thought it was done well here! Thank you! :D

Astoria definitely bears the weight of *way* more responsibility than a 16 year-old girl should ever have to. You find out why that is later in the story, and on the whole she bears up well under it, but it requires a lot of strength. And she is definitely terrified that she won't be able to protect the people she loves.

Complexity was what I was going for with Astoria, so I'm really happy to hear that you think she comes across that way from chapter 1.

Yay! Someone's sympathetic for Draco! I get such a wide range of responses to him early on in the story, since so many people have really firm opinions on Draco Malfoy. Especially at the beginning, before we really get inside his head, what people seem to think of him varies a lot. But I did want to convey that he's got some vulnerability. Even if he, like Astoria, is good at covering it up, his appearance doesn't lie.

Thank you! I love working out the details and really trying to paint a picture of the scene. I used to write from a really dialogue-based perspective, so this was the first fic where I ever really tried to dive deeper into tone and setting, and so far I've really enjoyed it. I think it's changed my overall writing style a great deal, because I just have fallen in love with the details.

And I love writing the Pureblood society aspect. That was one of the things I was most excited about when I decided to write this fic. My headcanon was that magical society, well, they're sort of old-fashioned as it is, right? So I thought that Purebloods, since they consider themselves the most magical of all, would cling to the past even more than most. I thought they would be very cold and formal (at least in public), as if they were still in a bygone era. That's been a lot of fun, too, and it really helps ramp up the tension. Muahaha! I love tension ;)

Thanks so much for such a lovely review, Aph! I really appreciate it!


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Review #59, by AphorideKeep Calm and Carry On: A Guide to St. Mungo's and Carrying On

17th August 2015:
Hey J! :D Dropping by for our review swap and the BvB fest ;) I was so glad I spotted you'd posted that tweet, because I'd seen you posted this the other day and really wanted to read it, but needed a excuse, and you handed me one perfectly on time ;) So it all worked out! :)

I really love Lorcan in this - there's something so brilliantly catastrophic about him, you know? :P Like, nothing he does seems to go quite right, even if it doesn't go badly - he has this impressive ability to upset things, and hit things and fall over :P Clumsiness is quite a common thing for characters to have, but you just do it so perfectly here - really, this is how to do clumsiness as a flaw, and I love it! :D

The relationships you write between all of the characters is just so great, too - I love how Erick is so matter-of-fact about what happened to Branson and about Lily's family being involved with the war and how they have to approach the possibility of other candidates having that kind of background, and how Lily can't quite cope with that - it's obviously a very sensitive thing for her, as I think it would be for most people. That said, I'm so looking forward to how Lorcan and Lily's friendship evolves - and what happens with this date with Linda's friend! :)

I love how you're doing the political side of things - with the campaigning starting and being so high-pressure, it seems, with their first major event in four days, and how they're essentially totally understaffed, and so much is still unknown. It's just so brilliant, because it feels so real, and yet there's this beautifully, light-hearted feel to it, you know? Your writing really pulls that out of the story, and it comes so naturally, too, from your characters and your writing - it's a real gift! :)

I'm really, really enjoying this story! I'm so so curious to find out who else decides to run and what havoc Lorcan manages to cause next :P Update? :P ;)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Thanks for this review, Aph! And the swap! :D

That's a wonderful way to describe Lorcan. He is brilliantly catastrophic! I'm glad you think his clumsiness is realistic/amusing. I also read a lot about characters who are clumsy, and it's just kind of a cute thing for somebody to comment on and everybody laughs about it. (cough cough Twilight cough cough) But speaking as a representative of the Clumsy Community, it gets pretty old fast! And I think calling it a flaw is dead on. It's funny, yes, and everybody around Lorcan will probably tease him about it forever, but honestly it's so inconvenient. Something I'm trying to do with this fic is look at the consequences and impact of these different aspects of characters. It's not just a throwaway thing that Lorcan is physically awkward/clumsy, so hopefully I'll be able to stick to that throughout the story!

I'm glad you're enjoying the relationships here! I think they're really important to the story and the campaign. Erick is a funny guy in that he's really just willing to say anything, anytime. And Lily is still getting used to the world of politics, which is going to be a continual adjustment throughout the story and as her background is revealed. :)

This is definitely a very stressful time for all of them! The stress is going to continue to mount and affect them differently, but at the heart of this story is humor more than drama/action. Ahh thank you so much for your kind words! It means so much coming from such a talented writer. -insert :wub: emoticon here-

The next chapter is officially in the queue! There's a bit more action in there. Hope you continue enjoying it! Thanks so much for this review/swap!


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Review #60, by AphorideJigsaw: Piece #3

13th August 2015:
Hi Sian - dropping by for our review swap! :) I just had to stop back on this, which I hope is okay, since it's been on my list of things to read and catch up with for so long, and now seemed like such an opportune time :) Hopefully it won't be long until I'm back either! :D

Okay, so you know from previous reviews (I think? :P) that I love Roxanne. She's so brilliant - so earnest and so ambitious, in a way, and so dedicated to the job, and also so in love with it, which I can totally identify with, in a sense. I love how you've got that nervousness when being given a big, new task to do down so perfectly - but she's so excited about it, too, and so looking forward to it. I do like, though, as well, how the human aspect of the story - the disappearance, the people involved - comes through too, and does affect her, and how she has to think of the headlines and kinda the rewards she'll get for the story instead of Malcolm Armstrong's wife sobbing. It gives her this lovely, real feel, you know? :)

I'm so so curious about the titbits revealed in the press conference (and how the wizards have finally kinda grasped the idea of them for the hit wizards and aurors, haha) - how they're now almost certain he didn't leave of his own accord, but won't say why, or anything else about it. And the 'people they're interviewing' about his disappearance... I'm with Obadiah on that one, actually - I'm hoping for an arrest, haha :P I just really wanna know how things progress - what next comes out about it, how Roxanne's story goes and what happens with Miranda and Andy at the office, if anything. You really do work the mystery into this so perfectly, it's amazing! :D

Also, I love how well-rounded the whole of your cast is. Everyone, from Miranda to Andy to Lily - and why does she dislike Roxanne so much? I really hope we find out soon! :D - is just so good and so real as a person. I actually kinda like how cruel Miranda is so Roxanne - it's kinda fun to read, haha, and makes for an interesting work dynamic. Also Jensen Collins... what an idiot, haha. I liked how there was such a difference between the older kids who knew about the war or lived through it, and those who didn't - it just created this real sense of tension in the group, and gave this brilliant reminder of the kind of fear it would give people who had lived through it - that maybe, maybe something was creeping back.

Your writing in this is so great, too - I love your dialogue. It's so amazing, and you manage to make it so easy to distinguish who's saying what, and give the lines so much emotion and everything. It's such a great skill to have! Also, your details in this are incredible. There's so many of them! You're just so so good at including so much detail, and so many little facts, and the description in this is so good, the whole thing just seems to come to life. Like, I can picture the scenes so clearly. It's so so gorgeous, and I'm so excited for what comes next, and so (selfishly, haha) glad there's so much of this up for me to read, because it means more of this ;)

I love this story. Really, really can't leave it so long until I come back! ;) :D

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hi again, Laura ♥

I'm really so pleased that you love Roxanne as a character - I really wasn't sure how she would turn out and a lot of the traits that she has have kind of developed as I've been writing or developing the plot for the story, but it's really great that you like her and can even identify with her in some ways. The moral and ethical aspects of journalism always seem really interesting to me, and difficult to balance for a lot of people too, I think, so I really wanted to include that question rather than having Roxanne be completely at ease with everything relating to her job.

It's so difficult to decide what to reveal and what not to reveal just yet - like I want it to be realistic and also keep the reader's attention, but there has to be enough that still hasn't been revealed to keep people reading and questioning, you know? I'm glad you're curious about what's been revealed so far though, and I'm really glad you're interested in how things progress!

That's such a compliment! Especially from a writer like you ♥ When I set out to write this, I did originally make a list of characters who'd appear, but it's grown so much and some characters have really taken on a life of their own. I'm so happy that the vivid personalities in my head kind of make the transition into the story, at least in some measure!

Seriously, you're far too kind to me and I really appreciate all your compliments because it's so encouraging to hear from someone like you, particularly when I'm struggling to write a few chapters at the moment and kind of need a boost. Thank you so much for this wonderful review, Laura, it means so much! ♥

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Review #61, by AphoridePain Makes You Beautiful: Rated Mature for themes and content.

13th August 2015:
Hey there Pix - dropping by for our review swap! :) You said you wanted something recent done, and I'm absolutely intimidated by the idea of starting novels as long as yours is, even though it sounds so cool, so I hope me stopping on this is okay! :)

This is an incredible one-shot. I'm not exactly a fan of Sirius as a person, but as a character he's amazing - so complicated and so many sides to him that there are a hundred-and-one different ways to take him and portray him which I love in characters, and this really just shows why. Not only that it makes me think, you know, about Sirius and Remus, and the Marauders as a whole, and their relationships as a group.

Speaking of the Marauders, I loved how you delved into each of them so well - Remus and James and Peter, too. It's not something I always see in Marauders stories (Peter being nonexistent was one of the reasons I pretty much stopped reading the era... :/), and I just love it here. I love how you emphasise the difficulties they have, and the problems they all face - the impact these things have on them, like Remus' lycanthropy and Sirius' relationship with his family, and how Peter almost manages to fly under the radar even with his friends so much so that they just don't know anything about his home life and things, which is equal parts devastating for him and devastating for them. Your James was great, too - I love how he almost tries to fix them, wants to give them the things they didn't get otherwise, and there's something almost heartbreakingly generous and almost naive about it, which I just adore.

I loved with your Sirius how he was so broken and so devastated by each loss he'd had, almost, and they seemed to keep on mounting up and overwhelming him - it rings so true to what he suffers in canon, with his family and so on, and it just makes me want to hug him, you know, because it's such a horrible set of things to endure. The part where he tells Remus he loves him, and Remus can't love him back, and it all ends, is so devastating too - the repetition of him having things and then having had them is just so good there. It's this wonderfully sad portrait of a very unhealthy relationship in that they're both clinging to each other, but it doesn't quite work, you know - they're only just supporting each other, really, but Sirius loves him and it's so sad. On the other hand, it's so perfectly in character for Remus, so I love it for that :P

Your writing in this was gorgeous, too - I love the style of it. I can't quite explain why, or what it is I love about it - the pace of it, the voice and the rawness of the emotions it brings out - but it's just so right and so beautiful, you know? Like it feels so real, almost like this is something he's saying directly to me - recounting what happened. Everything about this - every word - seems so perfectly placed and chosen exactly, and it's so lovely. Really, really is.

I feel like I've rambled a lot in this, so I'm sorry if this is a bit of a rubbish review, but I really did love this and I'm so glad I got a chance to read it! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response:

Hi Aph. Thanks for the swap!

Sirius Black has a lot to offer as a character. So many people are fascinated by him from the books, from the movies, just... he's so magnetic, you're just pulled in to whatever story he has to tell. He would have made one cool Godfather to Harry, but alas, that was not to be.

I guess this piece evolved by thinking about just what you said, the Marauders as a whole, and what they meant to each other. I haven't seen many satisfying fics that involve Peter in a way that I'd believe, so I had to think about that for a bit before coming up with my own version. The great thing about not knowing is that it gives us room to play.

I don't know if you are aware, but I am very allergic to angst. Mostly it's the overdone, melodramatic kind, where everything hurts so much that the characters can't put two words together without sobs wracking their body. I signed up for this challenge mostly because I didn't think I could do it, but also because I had a small idea that I thought I could pull off without getting all mucus-y and congested but still have everything hurt so badly that there's no way to move on from it. I wondered what that would look like, to make it real and raw, and Sirius gave me a character that I thought I could work with.

The take-away from this is: angst is hard. Uncomfortable. Exhausting. It's not my favorite genre, and writing anything longer than a one-shot in this style might just well kill me.

But now I know.

Thanks so much for reading and reviewing!


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Review #62, by AphorideKeep Calm and Carry On: A Guide to Keeping Calm and Coffee Stains

10th August 2015:
Hey J! :) Stopping by for our review swap - I love politics, so I couldn't resist this, it just sounded so fascinating and so brilliant, so here I am! :)

I really love how you've set this up: having Shacklebolt be Minister for so long and so well, too, and then suddenly retiring out of the blue with the election being called and Lorcan's boss deciding to run. There's something so fresh about it - and about having both Lily and Lorcan in politics too, which is often a career not even mentioned in fic! - which I just love, so I'm super excited to stalk - I mean, keep an eye out for :P - you updating this in the CR ;)

Your characters are so great, too. I love your Lorcan - the way he's a lot more sensible and down-to-earth than his parents seem, the way it doesn't sound like Luna and Hermione, despite being friends at school, kept massively in touch, at least with normal society for the former, haha. When the canon characters were mentioned - Shacklebolt and Luna and Hermione and Harry - there were just these beautiful little touches and nuances which spoke of their canon counterparts, you know, and just made them so good! Plus, I love Lorcan's clumsiness and how he's had such a bad day, haha, and almost predicted it - the opening was brilliant - and how he and Lily are such good friends in the office.

I really liked your writing in this too. The tone you use for Lorcan is so dry and witty, it gives it this lovely undertone of humour which is so so great and gives this huge amount of character to your writing, which I just love. You do use a lot of short sentences, which makes it very punchy - but just be careful not to do too many or that'll get lost and it'll start sounding stilted ;) Your dialogue is so good in this - it's so realistic and so good, and just sounds so write, plus you've managed already to give all of your characters pretty distinctive voices and characters, which is such an impressive feat, given the size of your opening cast ;)

This is a great, great start, and I'm definitely going to be back for more! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Ahh Aph! Thanks so much for this wonderful review! I wrote this first chapter in one big go and posted it really quickly so I wasn't sure if it was anything worthwhile or just random nonsense, and getting feedback is super helpful!

I'm excited that you find the setup interesting! I've been thinking about politics a lot lately with the American election stuff going on, and then I made up some headcanons for Wizarding politics after the War, and here we are! I didn't think there was much fic out there about politics, so that also intrigued me.

I'm glad you like my Lorcan! I'm accidentally falling in love with him haha. For Luna and Hermione-- I like to think they do actually keep in touch, but Luna has no idea how famous Hermione is, so she's just like "oh Lorcan I think I know this person who does this thing!" and Lorcan's like "Mum...she's so famous and influential and what planet do you even live on??" I'm glad you thought the canon characters seem in character! That's something I'm always nervous about. :)

Ahh I'm so glad you like the style! It's really different from my normal style so I'm not too confident about it. It's funny you mention the short sentences because I accidentally do tons of long sentences and feel super self conscious about it! So it's good to see that's not an issue? Haha regardless I'll keep an eye on it! Thanks! :)

I'm very glad that you think the characters are developing already! That's something I'm fleshing out more as I figure out where the story is going so I'm glad you like the starting place!

Thanks again for this wonderful review! It gave me a lot of confidence to keep working on this fic! :D


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Review #63, by AphorideThe Pub: Stumble

10th August 2015:
Hey Kaitlin! :) Dropping by for our review swap! I love stories about Hannah (and Neville - hopefully? ;) :P), but a story about her and the pub is something I haven't seen before, so I had to stop by! :)

You say humour is terrifying and the hardest style and I'd definitely agree with this - it's so so difficult to do, that balance is just so hard to find at times - but you really don't need to feel bad about this at all, you've done really, really well with it, especially for it being your first time writing humour! I love the comedic moments you've sprinkled throughout this - with the butterbeer foam going everywhere, and her giving a pint of firewhisky to one patron, haha. Poor bloke - must have been horizontal when he left :P You work them in so easily and so naturally, it's just so great! :)

I love the way you've written Hannah, too - her clumsiness, her apprehension at suddenly owning a pub even though she wanted to because she has no experience, her wonderful ability to laugh off accidents and things. Not to mention she's so nervous, and almost paranoid of something in the kitchen - though given this is for the Flip Side Challenge, maybe a hint as to the future? ;) - and she just seems so real, in all, you know? She's just such a rounded character in this, and it's so great! It's not easy to do either, in a shorter story, especially when you've got so much else to put into it, so you've just done amazingly in this! :)

Your writing in this is really great. Like I said, the humour came through really well in this, and I loved how your description was so on point for all the comedy moments, too - the image of Hannah covered in foam was so great! :) And the bit with the smoke was so good, too - the combination of the suspense and the reveal in this was perfectly done! :) Plus, you really managed to get all of the emotions coming through so beautifully - but then I knew you could do that already ;)

(One thing: you say at the beginning that Hannah buys The Three Broomsticks, and then at the end you say she's in London :/ Maybe something to edit quickly? But it's nothing big! ;))

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

Aph xx

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Review #64, by AphorideBeyond Repair: Daddy's Little Flowers

10th August 2015:
Hey there - dropping by for our review swap! :) I hope it's okay I chose this one - but I've always been fascinated by Petunia and Lily's relationship (it's not nearly written about enough, imo), so I just had to stop by on it :)

I love the way you've started this right at the beginning - with Lily being born and Petunia becoming a sister, and meeting her sister for the first time. It's such a sweet - well, bittersweet almost at the end - moment to choose, and it's done so well, with the writing scaled down to read simply, to match with Petunia's age and the mentions of period details. (Though one slight error: nurses and midwives of the 1960s didn't wear pillboxes, they wore lace caps ;))

The way you've written Petunia is just so believable, and it's so impressive considering that she's a difficult character at best, not to mention writing children is so so hard, so the fact that you've done both is really incredible. I love how you've got the moment at the end where Petunia - like all older siblings get at times, especially when they're young! - has that moment of jealousy for Lily, because she's daddy's flower and mummy's love, not the baby, and then she's assuaged swiftly, and forgets about it. It's a really, really lovely piece of foreshadowing for what happens in their later lives - and I love it! :)

Your writing in this was so good, too. Like I said, children are so hard to write because writing simply and writing well are so difficult to marry together - but you do it so well here I'm almost jealous :P There's this really lovely clean and clear quality about your writing, and so honest, too - the emotions Petunia's feeling come through so beautifully, and it really heightens everything in this, really making it come alive, you know? It's so gorgeous! :)

Thank you so much for the swap - this was a really lovely read! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hi Aph!

Thank you so so much for your lovely review! I agree that their relationship is very interesting and doesn't get enough attention. I'm not complaining though - a little less competition for this story is okay with me ;)

I really enjoy writing children, so I am always really happy when reviewers compliment that. Thank you very much!!

I swear I tried to look that up about pillbox caps. Darn! Thanks for letting me know, though.

Really, thank you so much for this lovely and kind review!!
:hug: Renee

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Review #65, by AphorideBeautiful Mess: Beautiful Mess

10th August 2015:
Hey there! :) I'm dropping by from the Dobby rec thread - the rec given by ScorpiusRose17 ;)

This is such a lovely one-shot - I can totally see why it was recommended! There's this lovely quality about this, with the simplicity of the story really allowing the quality of the writing and the sweetness of the emotions to come through so beautifully. It's really cleverly done too - it's one of those things which is so hard to do because it's easy for it to become boring, you know, almost too nice and too simple, but there's enough description in this, enough going on for it to still be really enthralling :)

The way you've characterised both Harry and Ginny - especially Ginny - is so so impressive, too. They're both so close to their canon counterparts, and it's something which is so hard to do again, so it's so amazing you've done that so well! I love the way you show how Ginny's grown and matured, especially where her children are concerned - but she still has her kinda cheeky and fun side, haha, and this great side of loyalty, and devotion when she looks at her family, which is just so her, you know? :)

Your writing in this was so lovely, too. It was simple and this was short, but you had so much beautiful description - when Ginny looks in on the sitting room and the mess there, and then her family together in her and Harry's room were both so wonderfully described. There's so much fluffy emotion in this, so much sweetness, and while I'm not usually a huge fan of fluff, it works so well here - there's something about it which can't fail but bring a smile to your face :)

This is a really, really lovely one-shot and it really deserved its recommendation :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Aph,
This whole post makes me want to cry tears of happiness. Thank you thank you thank you, for your kind words. I bet Harry and Ginny were the best parents and I tried to convey that here! I seriously have no words. I am thankful and truly honored for such a wonderful and sweet review.

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Review #66, by AphorideBad Blood: (don't) forgive and forget

6th August 2015:
Hey there, dropping by for the BvB fest! :D I'm always a sucker for Snape and Lily friendship fics, especially ones revolving around how complicated and difficult it must have been - and yeah, the imbalance running all the way through it - so I had to stop by! :)

I really, really love this. I don't know much Taylor Swift, but I love that quote and it's so perfect for this story - and for the argument and the point Lily's trying to get Snape to see, and which he just keeps on missing.

I love the way you've characterised both Lily and Snape - there's this strength about Lily which I love, and a sense of fairness and generosity and general kindness in how she wants to still be friends with him, she almost doesn't like that she's having to let him go and get rid of him, almost, but she knows it sort of has to happen. It's so so lovely as characterisation, and so in keeping with what we learn of her character in the books, too. At the same time, she's so believable as a teenager, with her impatience and her temper coming out when he keeps failing to get it and just assumes he knows what she thinks, and completely misunderstands the whole problem.

Your Snape is so great, too. I love how he's so oblivious to the reality of the situation - the true depths of what his actions are doing and causing, and keeping on insisting on excusing it - and how he assumes that it's something to do with Potter. I always thought his turning things back to James was a bit obsessive in the books, and you've just highlighted that here. He almost doesn't think that it's because she doesn't want to talk to him, but that she likes James more - there's this beautiful, creepy sense of a very twisted sense of competition about Snape, especially with James, and it's so so good - it comes across so well in your writing!

The way you've portrayed their friendship and its end here is just amazing. I love so much how she feels such a sense of imbalance in their friendship - and there kind of was some of that in the books too, now I think on it... with him never listening to her about his friends, like you say, but always pressing about James and everything... even when there (quite possibly) wasn't anything at all there. There's something so clinging about it, and so stifling almost, like they're both trying to told on to the memory of the children they were... I dunno, it seems so unhealthy though when you write it - and I love that about it, because it is, in a way. I loved, too, how you had her on one side, being so fair and trying to do the right thing and struggling to see ways to make it work - but willing to try for so long - and him on the other side who just doesn't seem to see there's any issue, and on the times he does, it's only ever about the small, minutiae of the detail, never the full picture. It's kinda sad, because it's a friendship coming to an end, but at the same time, there's this definite sense of it's for the best through it - that it'll be better for Lily, and perhaps she knew it had to end.

You know, it's strange, I've always found their relationship so fascinating so I've thought about it quite a lot, but you've given me so much more to think about it in this, so thank you for that! :)

This is a great one-shot - I really loved reading it, and I'm so glad I did! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: I'm so sorry for taking so long to respond but I'm getting to this now.

All I kept thinking about when listening to this song was how much it related to Snape and Lily. I felt like it summed up their entire friendship to be honest with you. I feel like as much as Lily wanted to go on being friends with him, even she knew that there was a point where she had to put her foot down and demand better. I feel like Lily is willing to be friends with anyone as long as they can work with her and she tried as much as she could with Snape but he just wasn't getting what she was trying to tell him.

Lily's forgiven Snape for so many things in the past that he probably just assumes that she's going to forgive him once again because in his eyes calling her a Mudblood is not the worst thing he's done and he doesn't understand that it's a much bigger deal to Lily than he thinks it is. And so when she doesn't forgive him for what he's done it's like he doesn't understand WHY she's not willing to forgive him, or why being called a Mudblood is such a big deal so he makes the obvious assumption that it must have something to do with James.

I cannot express how happy it makes me to hear that you liked their characterization.

Lily probably knew that she should've ended their relationship sooner because she knew that her morals were not the same as Snape's but probably kept making excuses to not break it off with him. He was after all the one that brought her into the Wizarding World so it was very difficult for her to cut off someone that had had such a big impact on her life.

Thank you so much for this great review I really, really appreciate it!

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Review #67, by AphorideThe Story of Nicolae: The Japanese Lava-Swimmer

6th August 2015:
Hi again, Georgia! :D I saw you'd updated, so I really wanted to get back to this asap, so I could catch up :)

I really love how you go into so much detail with the dragons - you think of and include pretty much everything: behaviour, biological reasons for the behaviour, traits and habits, tricks to dealing with them... everything. It's really, really amazing as a world, because it's so complex and you make it so real - the dragons feel just as real, just as alive and as much as characters as the people do, almost, and it's really, really incredible :) It really helps bring the whole story to life, you know? :) Plus, world-building like that is hard, and you do it so well, so you should definitely be so proud of yourself for that - it's a real skill to have!

I love Charlie so much. I love how genuinely decent he is as a person, and how you get his passion for both the dragons and for flying across so that without you ever having to say it the difficulties he must have had to choose between Quidditch and dragons - but also the reasons he chose dragons - are so clear. I'm so looking forward to how you develop him further - what happens with his friendships and so on as the story goes on, the romance (of course :P), and how he grows, because he doesn't have too many flaws at the moment (though, he's not gary stu-ish, or cliched or anything as such - just nice and solid and dependable and you make it work so well as a character!), and I'm so curious to see how he goes with those, and reacts to stress and things.

I love as well how great all of your characters are, even when they don't appear much. Sead is just still a jerk, haha, and Andy is so good for putting up with him - though perhaps foolish? I dunno... we'll have to see on that one :P - but I love how you have them all settling in and perhaps starting to find their feet, find their friendship groups, as such, and work out who actually they get on bestwith and things - it's so true to life, again.

I have to say that I loved the scene with the dragon hatching - your description of the baby dragon was to die for, it sounded so cute! :) And I'm so excited to see what's going to happen with the egg he finds - if it is abandoned, if it's going to die or if he manages to save it. I hope it gets saved... :(

Your writing in this was great. I already talked about your characters, and you give Charlie such a brilliant voice in this it's so lovely: it's so clear and so unique, and so honest, too, about what he thinks and feels about things. It's so great, and says so much about him as a character. As I said before, your description is great, and your dialogue is so so good - it's so cleverly done!

I really, really love this story. If this isn't in my favourites already, it's going in, because I'm going to have to keep reading this :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hello! I know I say it in every response, but I really just can't thank you enough for taking the time to read this story and write such fantastic reviews.

You have no idea how much I appreciate you noticing how much thought I put into the biological side of dragons... I'm a biology student, and I have SO much fun just thinking about how I can fit these creatures into what makes sense to me.

...Seriously, just so much fun.

Charlie is totally someone I'd like to have in my life. He is flawed, moreso than we've seen so far at this point, but those flaws just haven't come up yet very much. You're totally right in that his major flaws come through when he's stressed, or when things aren't going right.

I'm not gonna say anything about the dragon egg ;)

YOU'RE JUST SO SWEET. I'm sitting on a couch in a random hallway at my university (it's my first day and this is the only building I've ever been in... I'm going to stay on this couch as long as I can...) and I'm just smiling like an idiot, reading this review. Thank you SO much.


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Review #68, by AphorideDiscarded Pillows : Chapter 1

4th August 2015:
Hey there, Kaitlin! :) Dropping by for our review swap! I just had to stop by on this - I hope you don't mind - because I haven't read much Albus/Scorpius, though I do like the pairing, and this one just sounded so intriguing.

I love the way you start with them broken up, over an argument we don't end up knowing anything about - it's so so great, because it just throws us into the scene but doesn't hold us back from anything, either story-wise or character-wise. There's something so lovely sometimes about a story which dives into a particular scene or moment or interaction or event and goes into it and through it in detail, and that's exactly what you've managed to capture here :)

Your characters are so so lovely - I love Albus, and how he just wants things to be private which should be, really, and doesn't want important things to be flung all over newspapers - which is a really difficult thing to manage :/ I've always thought fame must be so hard to deal with, because of that kind of pressure and the publication of almost anything... I just love, too, that you've actually included discussion of fame in this, too, with the Next Gen kids because it's always been part of my headcanon for them, so I appreciate that :P But yes, Albus is so wonderful - there's something so genuine about the way he is so nervous about going back to Scorpius, but yet wants to, but finds that he almost can't... it's so true to life. I loved Rose, too - how she was so fiery and so disappointed in Albus, and so fed up of him and Scorpius arguing... she has a point, though, when she tells him to just grow up, almost, and talk to Scorpius :P I love how she's got a combination of Hermione's smarts and Ron's lack of tact in this - it's a great combination! :) (The only thing I'd say is maybe develop Scorp a little more? Like, there's not much said about him, and he doesn't do much except be nice... :/)

(I'm so sorry, I didn't realise I had rambled on for that long... *hides*)

Anyway, I love the detail in this - from the way you describe the club they're in for Rose's party, to the way you describe Albus getting drunk - it's just all so good and so real and really brings the whole scene to life. As always, your dialogue is so lovely, and I really love how you use it so cleverly in this - there's just the perfect amount of it so that the points each line makes really hit home. It makes them all that much stronger and more emotional, you know? Especially those ending lines between Albus and Scorpius - they were so sweet! :)

I also love how you ended it not so much on them getting back together, but on them enjoying themselves and leaving it all on an ambiguous note as to whether or not they get back together - it just ties the whole thing together perfectly, I think, and I really love that it's not too cute or too sad, too ;) Plus, ending without almost ending, with things being ambiguous, takes real skill to pull off, so kudos to you for that! :)

This was such a lovely one-shot and I'm so glad I had a chance to read it - thank you so much for the swap! :)

Aph xx

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Review #69, by AphorideThe Story of Nicolae: The Tuatarian Greybeard

4th August 2015:
Hi again, Georgia! :) Hopefully you won't get too sick of me before this whole thing is finished (seven more chapters to go, waah! :P)! ;)

(Though, tbh, then you'll just have to updated ;) :P)

Ah, I loved this chapter! :D I loved them all going to the pub, and, well, just everything about that scene: how Charlie was so happy to be the person who knew everyone at the beginning, how Opal convinced him to dance, the little snippets about Andy and Sead's relationship we learned in this (and boy, intense is definitely the right word to describe him, haha :P), and how Opal kisses him at the end, and she really doesn't mind just sort of does that drunken outward thought train, haha, and metaphorically shrugs and goes to sleep :P It was just so good and so lovely - and so very natural and typical of students of any kind, haha. I really liked how Fabian, the day after, had the hangover potion he'd used, hehe, and didn't care Charlie's gay - there's something so true to life about it, I think, that often people aren't bothered, or are less bothered than people think - it's just that those who are shout louder, you know? But anyway, I loved Fabian reminding him about class, too - poor Charlie! :P

(Though it is his own fault, so maybe not.. :P)

I also really liked the scene with them in class - so many stories just skip over any kind of class time because it's 'boring' so I love you included it! :D Plus, the teacher's name, omg... if my teacher had a name like that I'd have to practice saying it in front of a mirror to avoid accidentally sniggering in class or something :P

The bit with him worrying about his mum's reaction, and him describing what he thinks it would be is so so great, too. There's something so true about it - about how Charlie presumes she'll react and how he can't bear to face it, and that's sort of a whole bunch of his motivation to do well at the programme. It was such a brilliant description - so so right, and in character for both Charlie and Molly, and I loved it so much :)

As always, your writing in this was incredible. Your description was amazing - I loved, like I said, all your character descriptions, especially Molly's, and how you described their night out. (The only thing I'd say is that I wouldn't use the word 'spastic' because it can be seen as offensive to disabled people ;)) Your dialogue was amazing in this too - I loved the bits of humour you used; they worked so so well :)

Another great chapter! :D

Aph xx

Author's Response: I'll never get tired of your reviews!!!

I'm hoping to be more consistent about updates... I'm really hoping to. Once I'm back in school, it'll either be easier or more difficult... we'll see.

Fabian is really... chill. There's not a whole lot that could make him dislike a person, and he's just a really great guy.

That name was the result of Nano. That was the whole thinking-while-writing (or really... just not thinking), and I typed something and that's what came out. It ended up working through, so I kept it haha.

Thanks for catching that! If I'm not mistaken that's a word that varies level of appropiatness regionally, so I'll be sure to edit it out :)

Thank you thank you again!


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Review #70, by AphorideThe Story of Nicolae: The Imperial Redhorn

4th August 2015:
Hey again, Georgia! :) So it's a little while later than I expected (blame the House Cup ;D), but I'm back! :D

I know I said this before, but I really, really do love this story. There's something so beautifully in-depth and complicated about the world you've created which makes it so real and so strangely simple to understand, because of the way it sort of connects, with the dragon training programme so like real-life post-school vocational things, and the way it sounds almost like any other real life animal sanctuary - perhaps a bit low on funds, but full of people who care about the animals they look after :)

I love your characters, too - Charlie is just so great. I love how he deliberately tries to somewhat arrogantly down-play his Quidditch abilities, haha, but then admits it when Andy prods him for them. I love that Charlie's making friends - and, actually, that a lot of his perhaps closest friends at the moment are girls, it's a refreshing change, and really, imo, ties into the fact that in the wizarding world it's made reasonably clear that magical evens the playing field. You've really captured that 'I'm new and hi everyone' kinda feel you get at a new school, or training school/camp or whatever. It's so so brilliant! :)

Okay, I have to talk about the Quidditch! First off: I really, really don't like Sead. There was no reason for him to be so rude and so aggressive simply because a girl he was engaged to wants to play on the same team as another guy. It's just... there's something almost controlling about that, you know? It's a very possessive characteristic and one I don't really like. But, that means he's a great character - I love the sense you give of there being so much history between him and Andy and perhaps Charlie's sort of unknowingly got into the middle of more than he knows. Poor bloke :(

Your writing in this is so lovely too - it's so descriptive, and so great; all of the emotions in this, the excitement, the sheepishness, the anger, they all come through so brilliantly, and really bring the whole story to life. Your dialogue is so great, too - I love how you're so aware of giving different characters slightly different voices, it lends such a great voice in general to the story :)

I'm so so glad I found this - it's so great, and I'm so looking forward to reading the next chapter! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Aph!

This is just... ADKJS;FKA. I have so much trouble expressing how fantastic these reviews are, and responding to them in a way that doesn't seem lazy.

I wrote this during my first semester at college, so I think there's a lot of my experiences with what's going on with Charlie, and I definitely used him to help process some of my own insecurities and anxiety.

Your feelings towards Sead are understandable and shared by me. He tends to be very possessive, yeah. Some of that is just him being that type of person, and some of it is explained by the past. I'm really glad that you like the characters! I'm really making an effort to make believable characters, with depth.

Your reviews seriously just mean the world to me. Thank you so much!


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Review #71, by AphorideThe Story of Nicolae: The Sahara Goldenwing

30th July 2015:
Hey there, Georgia! :) I spotted this in the Claw updates thread, and since it's BvB fest so anything goes - that and I have a huge weakness for Charlie/Original Male Character romances - so I just had to stop by! :)

Can I just say first off that I love so much that your chapter titles/summaries are all different types of dragon - and not just the ones from the series, which JKR talked about. I always love themes of things, haha, and it just really brings the story to life almost before it starts - with all the information there, and it makes the world you've created for Charlie and the sanctuary so rich in detail. It's so so lovely!

I love your Charlie, too. I love how, since we don't see much of him in canon so there's so much to embellish on, you've developed him in a way which makes him seem like the kind of guy who'd get his friends to bring him a Norwegian Ridgeback, haha. He's so excited and enthusiastic and seems pretty caring and friendly, too, and I love that you sort of play on those traits in this first chapter - especially by adding the nerves. The Charles moment made me laugh! :P Poor guy...

I'm so curious to see what happens with this - what happens with the egg he finds, how the romance develops (and with who!), and just how he grows, you know, with his friends and with the sanctuary in general. Like, I love how you introduce it all in this chapter, and I really, really wanna know what happens next - what happens at Quidditch (if anything), what classes are like, just everything!

(Confession: I, um, found this story last night and may have read the entire thing in one go :P Oops? But I don't regret it at all :D)

I love your writing in this, too - it's so clean and so clear (though I did spot a few typos/mix-ups of where/were and things, so it might be work looking it over again just once for those?), and your words convey all the emotion so so well. I could really feel his nervousness and worry at the beginning, when he'd apparated, and the sort of confusion when he asked where the dragons were, and his enthusiasm about them - it's so so great! :)

I'm so so glad I found this story - favouriting so I don't miss things! - and I'll be back soon ;)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hey! I'm going to try to get all of these amazing reviews responded to tonight, because... really, they're just amazing. I can't thank you enough for leaving these for me. I'll ramble about it a lot in every single response.

I'm glad that you noticed (and liked) the chapter titles. I always struggle with chapter titles, so this seemed like a good way to make it original. I have a really dorky spreadsheet with all of the dragons and their characteristics.

I really do need to go over these chapters again. The first 35k or so was NaNo (the rest of the 50k was either non-chronological or rubbish)

Again... I can't thank you enough for these reviews. Getting these and rereading them motivates me to keep writing, and keep posting. Thank yo uso much!


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Review #72, by AphorideAtonement Is Coming: A Surprise Announcement

28th July 2015:
Hi again Kaitlin! :) I'm back for the second review - and again, I'm so glad I said to do two, because this was such a lovely chapter and such a sweet moment to include! :)

I really love the switch from the last chapter, with its darker, more angsty themes and the suspense building as to what will happen and where the group will strike next, to this one, which is a lot lighter, though still not without its own angst, and more hopeful, with the announcement of future baby James Sirius! :) Plus, all the other kids there (Victoire and Fred especially sounded so adorable - insisting he could stay up longer, mahaha... silly boy! :P) made it kinda impossible to be too down when they were mentioned, you know? :P

You write the trio so well, you know - in fact, you write all of the canon characters extremely well, which I'm so impressed by because I find them so hard to do, and so intimidating. I love how you've nailed Ron's habit of making jokes about other people - his comment about Neville and Luna was spot on for him! - and how Hermione's the more down-to-earth one as always, and the one who worries about protection with the house and all. The one I'm most impressed by, almost, is Hagrid. You know, I never write him in anything deliberately because I just find him so difficult to do - like, he is pretty much impossible for me; I doubt I'll ever write him - and then you do this with him, and he's just so right and so pefectly canon, it's amazing! Like, seriously, wow :)

Your writing in this one is just as good as it was in the previous chapter. I love so much how your dialogue still changes with the character, how it still adapts to each person mannerisms and way of speaking - it's so so great, such a gift to have - and it works so so well, especially in a chapter like this with so many different characters (who, by the way, you manage flawlessly). I'd only say to watch that you don't include phrases which are redundant (like when someone's speaking, say that someone's heard them - we'll assume they've heard unless you say otherwise ;D), and repeating things. It's not a huge problem - it's comparably minor, but I thought I'd mention it since I noticed it ;) Your description, too, in this is great - I loved again all the little details - Luna with the mention of the raddish earrings, George not having been making so many jokes as usual - it's just so so good.

Thank you so much for the swap - it was so great to do! :) I'm so glad I got a chance to read this story and I'm so excited to see what happens next! :)

Aph xx

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Review #73, by AphorideAtonement Is Coming: A Shadowy Threat

28th July 2015:
Hey there, Kaitlin! :) So I had to stop on this when I saw you were mentioning swaps, because it just looked so good and so interesting as an idea - and, really, it was well past time I dropped back on your page ;)

I've got to say first that I love how in this you've essentially turned the war in canon - purebloods as the villains, and muggle-borns and co. as the good guys - on its head, with the former good guys taking it too far with the 'hating purebloods' idea. It's a really clever idea, and one I've not seen often in fic.

I love, too, how it started with Minerva and Kingsley discussing the possible threat and not really being able to do anything, and not thinking it's as serious as it is - there's this lovely sense of hope in Kingsley's words, I think, which is so great, and kinda reminds the reader that this isn't long after the end of the war - maybe a few years - and the memories of those times are still there and still so strong. They were both written so well, too - Minerva especially, with her care for her students and generally stern demeanour and all :)

Also, I really love how some of the vigilantes are former members of the DA - though I do wonder if that might play a part in capturing them/working out who did it? Since they all have the same coins, and Harry has the 'master coin'... hm... we'll see, I guess ;) I really liked with them, too, how you made them as horrible and dislikable, if understandable, as the Death Eaters were - like, there's not much between the two groups on aimability, which I love, given the mirroring quality of this story :)

Your writing in this is so good, too! I love how you don't try to hide the identities of those involved from us, either - there's something refreshing about that, but I suspect it'll get frustrating when the trio get involved and don't know :P I really like your dialogue in this - it's so clean, but still gives each character a clear voice, you know? And your description is great, too - you pay so much attention to the details, it's lovely. The only thing I'd say is maybe a little bit more description around the dialogue - to flesh it out a bit more? Sometimes there feels like there should be an emotion in the dialogue, but it doesn't quite come through in the text, if that makes sense?

Anyway, this is a really, really great first chapter - it's such a brilliantly clever premise and a great idea, and you've written it so well - I'm so glad I found this! :)

Aph xx

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Review #74, by AphorideIn April: you lie.

24th July 2015:
Hey there, Erin! :) Dropping by for our review swap! I do love a good Drastoria, and the 500 challenge is always insanely hard but can produce some absolutely stunning results, so I couldn't really pass up stopping by ;)

I love how you've structured this - with the smaller sections of text in between the italicised sections with the quotes in from the anime (which, I'll admit, I have never heard of before, but are incredibly beautiful quotes! :P), like additional asides - kinda, the things perhaps he can't say to her, you know? It's so lovely, though, and it really sort of helps with the angst, too - all of those lines are so genuine and so sad and just ugh :(

I love the way you've characterised both Draco and Astoria in this. It's so so devastatingly sad, the way Astoria seems to have faded almost, and her illness (which just sounds so so horrible for anyone who cares about her to try and watch her go through, you know?), and Draco still loves her through it all, still can't quite let go of her or almost accept that she's going to go at some point, possibly soon, even though he knows that it's going to happen. There's this very real and wonderfully sad sense of avoidance and denial of the facts and a kind of desperation in Draco to hold onto Astoria, almost as if he can keep her there and try and make her better from sheer will. It's a really human response, and very difficult because of that, I think.

That little mention of her seeing Scorpius, hugging and kissing him is so so bittersweet - it's almost like she's saying goodbye and both she and Draco know it, but Scorpius doesn't necessarily know, and there's something so horrible about the idea that that's sort of their last proper moment, you know? That it's sort of the end... :/

Your writing in this was so lovely too - so clean and so clear, and with such a gorgeous style, too, especially given that it's only 500 words. Like, I'm almost jealous of how well you did with that restriction, but so amazed, because it's super super hard to do, and this is really, really impressive. I loved your description in this, too - with the sentence about her condition and illness and the seizures (which was just so good!), and the last line was well is so so pretty a line - it's jus so beautiful, really.

This is an amazing little one-shot - like, seriously. Wow. Thank you so so much for the swap - I'm so glad I got a chance to read this! :)

Aph xx

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Review #75, by AphorideWhere The Wind Takes Me: The Third Chapter

24th July 2015:
Hi again, Isobel! :) I'm back - I couldn't resist, really, it was too good to pass up :P

Omigosh, you are way way way too good at this whole mystery business :P With every chapter you post, I just get more and more curious about what's happened, but you don't reveal enough of it! :P Nah, seriously, the balance is perfect - frustrating, but that's how it should be, you know? ;)

I love how this chapter goes back in time to Mikhail and Louanna's first meeting - and I like how she's an Auror, too, and how she and Claire are sisters, though most people don't seem to guess it. It's such a lovely detail to include - and I suspect Claire might come into it again? That or die, haha. But there must be a reason for mentioning that they're sisters... I dunno, I feel like I might just be picking at straws :/

I do love the way Mikhail's so worried about them being women - though a lot of spies and so on during the world war were women, you know, so it makes a lot of sense from that perspective, which I love that you tied it in - and about whether or not his sister-in-law and her mother (I think?) will continue to help him once he can't keep giving them money to do it. It's a harsh question, a harsh thing to think about someone, but there's a certain amount of truth to it, I think.

In fact, really, just all of your details are so on point and so right, ugh, it's amazing :) I just love it so much - all of the period details, all of the little things which build the atmosphere of the war and the terror people are living in, all of the details about people; they're all just so so good and always so perfectly placed and just right.

Your writing in total is just amazing in this, it really is - it really makes your characters come to life so brilliantly (and they all have such different voices, in the text and in speech which is just so good, and I'm so jealous of :P), and the time period, too.

I'm so curious about so many things in this story - The Shadow Prince, who he is and why he's doing what he's doing, what happens to Louanna, why do they think it's Blue, what happened to Alice and Blue's mother, how is Alice connected to the Gorbachevs (her surname's Miller, like Louanna Chase's mother after she married, but I don't know if there's anything there?), just what happens?!

I'm sorry this is a bit short, but my wrists are playing up so I'm going to have to end this here - but I love this and I'm so excited for the next chapter! :)

Aph xx

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