Reading Reviews From Member: AlexFan
  
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Review #26, by AlexFanYear Five: The Big Thing

29th August 2014:
They really donít seem to be learning their lesson, do they? Laurel just landed herself in St. Mungoís because she completely lost control of herself, and hexed out, and yet all of her friends are STILL doing their recreational drugs. Like they are fully aware of what happened, has it not occurred to them that maybe the best thing to do would be to stop so that they donít put themselves in danger like Laurel? Theyíre terrified of what happened to Laurel and they worry about her but apparently what happened to her didnít terrify them enough to get them to stop with the drugs or get help if they canít stop on their own.

Tristan makes a good point about how muggles have gotten a lot farther than wizards and without magic, wizards seem to be stuck in the past and unable to move forward because itís kind of like theyíre so afraid of what change might bring. Theyíve cut themselves off from the world so thoroughly that the majority of them donít even know what a television is or a phone. How can you live in the 20th Century and not know about technology? Wizards look down on muggles so much and refuse to admit that muggles are farther along than they are yet they go ahead and steal the Hogwarts Express from them.

As a sidenote, Iím not in the best of moods right now so Tristanís ďwizards donít have souls,Ē philosophical crud is not something that I have the patience to deal with right now. (Also, Iím fairly certain that Tristan is depressed since he has a total lack of enthusiasm for anything and doesnít care about much which fits in a lot with most stories that Iíve read from people that struggle with depression.)

I never actually thought that purebloods hated muggleborns because they actually viewed it as their magic being taken from them (I now realise exactly how entitled purebloods actually think that they are). Saying that muggleborns are the reason that youíre not as good as you should be at magic is like people who say that their kids become autistic because of vaccines. I donít think any of these pureblood elitists realised that if the magic was only kept to pureblood, they would eventually die out or their DNA would become so similar that some biological mutation would probably end them.

Author's Response: No, they definitely didn't learn their lesson. Well, I think they'll be a little wiser about Cheering Charms, but it was far from sweeping. That's one of those quirks about the age I really wanted to get across: how casually selfish kids can be, how easy cognitive dissonance is, and how ardently they believe that they are indestructible.

Yeah, it's definitely interesting: if you have magic, then you don't really need to innovate. Another interesting thing, that didn't make it into this story, is where wizards get their food. Are their wizarding farmers, or do they just buy food that muggles have farmed? Food is an exception to Gamp's law (alongside, I think, currency)--so it can't just be created. Hmmm.

Oh yes, Tristan is certainly depressed :(

I remember in DH, when Umbridge was questioning Mary Cattermole, and she insisted that Mary must have stolen her wand--because she was muggleborn. That, and then the idea of "declining culture" because of muggleborn influence (how common names or traditions are lost/diluted) kind of coalesced into the Slytherins' prejudice. And I loved what you said about how it's like the anti-vaccers (I've studied infectious diseases a TON, and NUH UH). Yeah, all the purebloods are already distantly related, and inbreeding is VERY BAD (leads to tons of X-linked diseases). But, it kind of fits with history: royalty and aristocracy were/are very inbred, for similar reasons (and haemophilia is super common).

Thank you so much for your review--it was wonderful seeing your insights into this chapter!



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Review #27, by AlexFanComplicated: In Which Christmas Is Not The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year

29th August 2014:
I really like Olivia, she seems very realistic and the relationship that she has with her parents seems just like one a rebellious teenager might have (although to be fair, sheís not being rebellious considering very few people are actually worried about who theyíre going to marry at such a young age.) And she knows exactly how to get under her cousins skin, which I really like even though sheís not being very nice. As much as she may claim to hate Jason though, you can tell that she cares about him.

Wow, Jason really isnít very good at coming up with comebacks is he? I mean really, ďI know you hate yourself but you donít have to take it out on me.Ē I was just sitting here like, ďWow, really, thatís the best you could come up with?Ē But he seems like a nice person, maybe a little bit of a pushover and sensitive but it sounds like heís a hard worker and heís got his heart in the right place. I can also see the resemblance between him and Oliver, the Quidditch obsession was what really did it for me.

I really want to punch Oliviaís mother in the face. Good Lord woman just go jump off a mountain and let your daughter eat whatever the hell she wants. Characters like this make me flippin mad because itís like UGH YOU ARE LITERALLY THE WORST PARENT TO EVER EXIST. She is literally calling Olivia fat I am absolutely fuming!

Oh okay, Pansy is Oliviaís mother, I understand why sheís so irritating. I donít know how Oliver and Katie stand her to be honest. They didnít get along in their Hogwarts years so I have no idea why they would invite Pansy over for dinner.

Wow, Oliviaís dad is hella harsh. Her family is falling apart hot damn. I may hate Pansy with a passion but Iím glad she gave it to Andrew where it mattered (although I donít think pulling up your husbandís cheating tendencies in the middle of Christmas at a friendís house is the best thing to do). Of course itís hard for [i]you[/i] Andrew, the betrayal that Pansy feels must be miniscule to how difficult it must be for you to sneak around behind her back and spit in the face of her trust. She may still be in love with Malfoy (which, letís face it, we all saw it coming) but at least she wasnít sneaking around behind Andrewís back with Draco.

I think youíve definitely got an interesting start to your story is. Youíve developed your characters enough so that the reader knows what theyíre going to be like. I thought the pacing was good, everything fit in nicely and nothing felt particularly choppy. I liked the information that you included as well because it wasnít too much but enough to let the reader know how the main characters life at home was.

Author's Response: Thanks so much for such a lovely review!

You're so right about Olivia's parents - they're awful but so much fun to write :)

I'm really glad you enjoyed it.

Much love,

Emma x


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Review #28, by AlexFanAnd Just Like That: Chapter 1

28th August 2014:
First off before I get into the actual review, OH MY GOD YOUíRE ALIVE. Second, I love me some Marauders AU.

I like how even in your AU you still kept everyone in character. You can see that Lily and Snape are close friends but thereís still that part of Snape that refuses to accept help from anyone because of his ego. And even though he feels a little bad that Lily didnít get hired as a cook, he still agrees with Riddles decision (which is essentially his situation and relationship in the books as well).

I liked how James noticed that Lily had been crying but Snape hadnít, I donít know, it just speaks volumes to me about the type of people that they are.

I can see Riddle being sexist if he were just a regular muggle but at the same time, his best Death Eater was Bellatrix who was a woman. I can kind of see him being sexist but at the same time I kind of canít, if that makes any sense at all.

ďI justÖI just think with you being you, itíd be a waste to not have you be one of the waitresses.Ē Yeah what the hell does that mean actually? Did Severus just basically tell Lily itíd be a shame not to have her serving people? SEVERUS STOP OBJECTIFYING YOUR BEST FRIEND OH MY GOD. Heís basically asking her to use her body to get people to keep coming back? If the food doesnít make people want to come back then the problem is in the kitchen. People who cannot respect a persons right to personal space and think itís okay to treat Lily the way that the male customers did deserve not to be fed.

I just seriously want to punch Severus in the face. I knew he couldnít save himself after spouting a stupid line like that. Snape wouldnít have said something like that if he didnít think along the same lines as this muggle Riddle. I am 100% done with this jerkface, goodbye.

It says a lot when James, the one thatís supposed to be a jerk can make Lily feel better with like three or four short sentences than Severus can with his stupid rambling. Lily should just punch everyone that feels the need to violate her personal space and make her feel uncomfortable. Iíll do it for her. Who can be a team.

ďYouíre getting awfully cozy with Potter and Black,Ē WELL WHAT IS SHE SUPPOSED TO DO SNAPE JUST LET YOU AND EVERY OTHER GUY TELL LILY THAT HEY ITíS OKAY IF WE TOUCH YOU WITHOUT PERMISSION. I JUST . . . THIS MAKES ME HATE SNAPE EVEN MORE THAN I ALREADY DO.

Itís incredible how true you stuck to everyoneís characters despite this being an AU. You still managed to stick some canon in there and you really showed that neither James and Sirius nor Snape were the best of people. They both did horrible things to each other, theyíre at equal blame. I thought it was very mature of James to leave the cafe, he knows that he wonít be able to work with Snape and he knows that Snape needs the job more.
I liked how you drew a parallel between James and Snape. Because youíre absolutely right, Snape expected his apology to make everything better but James didnít, he knew what he did was wrong and that simple, ďIím sorry,Ē wasnít going to fix anything. James admits that the bullying side of his character is still there and that that part of him exists and he doesnít make excuses for the way that he acts because he knows itís wrong, whereas Snape wouldnít have done the same thing if he had been in Jamesí shoes.

I just really love your characterization of everybody. It was spot on.

The repetition of ďAnd just like that,Ē was not obnoxious at all, I didnít even notice it to be honest with you. The flow was perfect, each scene blended in with the next one perfectly, it didnít feel like you were jumping around or anything like that.

Iím in love with this and Iím super pumped for the rest of it!

Author's Response: I'M ALIVE! Sorry I've been kind of MIA - especially since you wrote a really nice review on one of my oneshots that I still need to respond to!

I chose sexism as the blood supremacy equivalent because I needed something that would believably translate into the muggle world and something that I hadn't yet seen in a muggle AU. If that makes sense. In some ways there's a bit of a stretch (i.e. Snape is way too possessive of Lily to let random guys hitting on and making her uncomfortable slide) but I'm overall happy with the way that it worked out. It's hard because in the Wizarding World, things like sex/gender, sexuality, and race aren't something that an individual is likely to be discriminated against (especially systematically) so I tweaked some things! I wish I had thought of Bellatrix when I started this story because she could have been head waitress instead of Rosmerta (although I did place her there because she's a barmaid in canon); I suppose I could make the argument that Bellatrix, while valued, is still in a place of servitude. But then again, so is every other Death Eater - male or female. It's just something that I have to work around, but I'm glad that you brought it up!

And I'm so glad that you liked my characterizations!!! I wanted to show that both Snape and James have problematic aspects to their characters, but that James was fundamentally a good person when and where it counted most. I'm glad that came across!!! I tried really hard to translate everything smoothly from canon into this AU setting and I'm so happy that you understood what I was going for - I really appreciate it :)

Thank you so very much for all of the lovely things you've said about this first chapter - it really means so much to me!!! I'm working on chapter three and once I get well into it, I'm going to post chapter two here.

Thanks!!!

~Jess


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Review #29, by AlexFanYear Five: Self-Spelling

28th August 2014:
I usually write my reviews as Iím reading the chapter so if any of them end up sounding weird, thatís probably why. Anyway, Isobel needs to start getting some food into her and stop worrying about what she eats. I feel so sorry for her because sheís so young, there is literally no reason for her to watch her weight, as long as sheís healthy then thatís all that matters. YOU ARE PERFECTLY FINE THE WAY THAT YOU ARE ISOBEL.

Iím honestly not surprised that Laurel was the first one to crash. She was the most dependent on the spells and took them the most often. Being forced not to use it would be difficult for her. Itís obvious to me that Laurel is self-spelling but I guess if I were in Isobelís place I wouldnít be too sure of what was going on my friend. I think you wrote Laurelís behaviour and reactions really well when she was off of her charms. The snappiness, and how sheís easily irritated and barely pays any attention in class.

Thereís a real difference from how everyone was at the beginning of the year to how theyíre feeling and acting this time around. At the beginning everyone was having fun and joking around and now slowly all of the characters are losing control of themselves and seem to have lost excitement for everything going on around them. This is not a healthy group of people right now, they really need to take some time and think about the choices that theyíre making and how it might end up affecting them.

I think someone needs to talk to Isobel about her anorexia problem. Someone needs to tell this girl that starving yourself is not the way to get yourself to lose weight. Someone needs to tell her that not eating is doing her body more harm than good, if she eats healthy and regularly exercises then she should be fine. But Isobel isnít overweight, her body cannot lose weight that it doesnít have. EVERY INCH OF YOU IS PERFECT FROM THE BOTTOM TO THE TOP ISOBEL (just like that song All About That Bass says). That being said, I think you dealt with Isobelís anorexia (and by the looks of it, bulimia) really well, it was written realistically. I literally have tears in my eyes right now like no, my babyís, donít hurt my babyís.

Oh my God Laurelís screaming and her scratching and it scared me so much that I literally cannot even right now. Laurel completely losing it scared me more than the first episode of Supernatural that I saw this morning. Your description of her glassy expression and her difficulty with breathing sounded absolutely terrifying and I just kept thinking, ďNO NONONONONONONONONO!Ē

Terrence Higgs needs a good punch to the face. Just because he isnít doing recreational magic doesnít mean that he doesnít need to know about the effects that it has on someone. Like good for him that heís not hexing but that doesnít mean that he shouldnít educate himself on the repercussions of it. Thatís like saying, Iím not having sex so I donít need to know about the consequences of it if itís not safe sex.

Itís very obvious that you did a lot of research on the subjects that you talked about in the subject. And Iím especially really happy with how you didnít simply deal with the situation as if it were something that could simply be shrugged off. Iíve read a lot of stories where the author doesnít deal with the sensitive topics that they talk about well but you kept the tone serious, because drugs and anorexia are serious problems and treating them any differently is kind of like insulting the people who suffer from stuff like this.

Author's Response: Thank you so much for this review! It meant so much to me!

Yeah, there's definitely a reason I chose Kat Dennings as Isobel's faceclaim. That actress is, I think, superdupergorgeouszomg--and she's definitely VERY curvy. I wanted images of a girl who looks great the way she is for Isobel. (The other pro of Dennings is that she came to prominence as a teenagers, and has a good amount moody and artful photos--buried under tons and tons of stunning glamour shots). That way, it would be more sad to imagine her slowly withering away :(

An interesting note: there's a newly named eating disorder, Orthorexia Nervosa, that people didn't realize existed until recently. It's basically an obsession with healthy eating and exercising that becomes so consuming that it's unhealthy. Physically, Ortherexia Nervosa isn't very damaging, except the those suffering with it will sometimes not get enough calories/just be a little too thin. BUT, O.N. is REALLY unstable/unsustainable, and almost invariably leads to Anorexia Nervosa at some point (sometimes the act of losing weight is the trigger for A.N.) The disturbing thing is that MOST female celebrities suffer from O.N.--but everyone acts like they are awesome for it, when actually it's a mental illness that really affects one's life and relationships with others. I imagined Isobel as starting the story with Orthorexia, which then devolved into Anorexia (with an occasional foray into bulimia).

I conceptualized "self-spelling" as being the wizarding equivalent of "shooting-up"--a behavior that indicates a major severity of the problem. Isobel definitely starts figuring it out here, but there's a lot of denial involved as well for the first part of the chapter. I'm glad that came off!

"There's a real difference from how everyone was at the beginning of the year to how they'e feeling and acting this time around." YES!

And I'm really glad you thought I dealt with her eating disorder well! I read this article once about how anyone trying to write about anorexia will surely fail, because anorexia is, ultimately, tedious and boring. The author wrote that too many people try to make it interesting, and accidentally end up romanticizing it. I also think that eating disorders are too often thought of as something like an extreme diet, but really, they tend to creep up on people. And ultimately, they aren't about vanity, but about control. It's really more of a mental illness, like true OCD (rather than like "OMG I'm so OCD"). Anyway, I thought about it a LOT, and really wanted to get it right, so I'm really glad you thought it worked!

Ah! Laurel's hex out! I labored over that scene so much, and I'm so glad the effect worked! I did a lot of research into overdoses for some of the details, but since this is a magical thing, augmented it with the screaming/scratching/delirium. This was such a pivotal point in the story, and I'm SO GLAD it had impact!

Higgs needs a good punch in the face, just generally.

"kind of like insulting the people who suffer from stuff like this"--yes, exactly! There were a lot of sensitive topics that I knew I couldn't just leave out, if my story was to be about realistic teenage problems, and I really wanted to make sure I handled them appropriately, and respectfully. I think, the only way to be respectful about this kind of thing is to be ACCURATE. Sort of like how abled people generating fiction about disabled people is VERY likely to offend, because they just don't understand what they are writing about.

Anyway, thank you SOSOSOSO much for everything you said in this review!!!


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Review #30, by AlexFanYear Five: Troll in the Dungeons!

27th August 2014:
Tristan seriously needs to get his stuff figured out with these contacts. He rips them or forgets to take them out, isnít that bad for the eyes or something? Why doesnít he just wear glasses?

TALK SMACK ABOUT GRYFFINDOR ALL YOU WANT BUT EVERYONE WANTS TO BE A GRYFFINDOR TRISTAN. EVERYONE. EVEN YOU WANT TO BE A GRYFFINDOR AND YOU DONíT EVEN LIKE THEM. Also, Tristan feeling like he isnít good enough for his parents is a very real feeling, I know that feeling well. Sometimes we forget that our parents love us no matter what and instead put ourselves down because we believe that we arenít good enough to be their kids.

If Tristan thinks that Kettleburns class was boring he just had to wait until Hagrid was the Care of Magical Creatures teacher, then heíd never be bored in class or have time to lounge around because heíd be running for his life away from hungry monsters.

I DO NOT HAVE TIME FOR YOUR ATTITUDE PROBLEM TRISTAN. Sprout is just trying to be nice and helpful in her own little way and he has to go and swear at her like that. I get heís got his own problems but thereís no reason to take it out on a teacher that is obviously worried about his health. If Iíd been her I wouldíve just taken thirty points just to spite Tristan (not that heíd care since he doesnít seem to care about much).

Well at least McGonagall realised that you couldnít send the Slytherins to the dungeons. That was always something that I found funny, the fact that Dumbledore sent everyone to their common room and the Slytherins towards the troll. Brilliant idea.

Trust Tristan to turn the Quidditch game that Harry nearly died into something really boring. I didnít have patience for Tristan in this chapter. So much stuff happened and he didnít even react to any of the things that happened. This boy has just completely turned off his emotions and stopped caring about things. This is like when you get really excited around a friend but they donít understand why youíre so excited and they just kind of stare at you like, ďPlease stop.Ē

Author's Response: Hello! Thank you so much for leaving your honest feedback! I really hope this chapter didn't turn your off of the whole story--I wanted things to be really realistic, but I also recognize that realism can be SUPER ANNOYING (because: teenage boys).

Tristan and his contacts: hahaha, yes, he really is terrible at it. Partially, him constantly sleeping in them/tearing them is because my best friend was ALWAYS messing up her contacts when we were 15/16. The real reason, though, is that it's a way for me to draw attention to the fact that he even wears contacts at all--very much in lieu of glasses. See, I wrote Tristan to be very much the "Anti-Potter." In some ways, they actually have very striking similarities--but inverted.

Which brings us to: GRYFFINDOR! I am definitely a proud Gryffundor :) Tristan is for sure full of sour grapes about the whole thing. I'm not sure if it came off, but Tristan's memory of his Sorting is a lot like Harry's (the hat suggests Slytherin, which bums the boy out). Thing is, Harry fought it, whereas Tristan just gave up. It's especially tragic, since WE know that you can actually pick your house. But the fact that Tristan didn't think to fight the placement proves that he really isn't a Gryffindor :(

Hahaha, what you said about Kettleburn vs Hagrid--VERY true!

And UGH, I KNOW! I really like Sprout in this story, and Tristan is such a jerkface to her. I went to High School with some boys who had some serious behavioral issues (quite worse than Tristan, actually), so I kind of channeled that for that scene--tried to get into that headspace. I hope you think it worked!

And YES! That is EXACTLY why I put that thing about the troll in the dungeons in there! hehe

And oh no! I hadn't intended the quidditch match to be boring! Woops!

Your analysis of Tristan is definitely spot on, and I hope that this story gives you enough reason to have patience with him as more details come to light!

Thank you so much for this review--it was a really valuable perspective!


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Review #31, by AlexFanThe Letters to No One: a girl can dream;

27th August 2014:
Iím finally getting around to your review! Sorry for taking so long.

I never really pictured someone from a pureblood family like Astoria working in the Owl Post Office of all places. I never really thought about the fact that people would start buying more and more owls after Harry but I can see it happening since people jump on the bandwagon when it involves a famous person.

I loved how even in Dracoís letter talking about love it still sounds very Draco. The mundane and few extraordinary people in the world. He sounds absolutely desperate for affection but he still manages to preserve some of that arrogance of his.

I kind of feel bad for Draco in this. After everything that he did and everything that he went through after, I can imagine that he would be feeling extremely lonely because the world shunned him for what he did and was involved with (which is understandable). I felt even more sorry for him when I found out that he seemed to be having trouble getting over Pansy.

I had a feeling that Draco was simply sending the letters off to see who they ended up at. It seemed too strange for him to simply forget to add in an address because thatís not the sort of person that he is. He may have let himself go a little bit but the old Draco Malfoy is still there with his sharpness and he wouldnít forget to add an address to a letter.

I feel like Astoria showing up on Dracoís doorstep was the answer to his letters. He finally has someone showing up that at least cares a little bit even if it is about getting the letters to their proper owners. On a sidenote, Astoria sounds like a bit of a gold digger. She seems more interested in what sheís going to gain by marrying Draco rather than Draco himself.

I mean, really? Wondering if she would be able to fit into Narcissaís robes when she was dead? She also doesnít exactly sound like a nice person, especially after hearing the news about Pansy, I mean, I get being jealous and outraged at finding out the news after thinking that you were involved in a relationship for three months, but Astoria is really going to sit there and think herself better than Pansy because Pansy doesnít keep house? Did she not hear the part about being diagnosed with a sickness?

I mean, yeah, Pansy was probably dead at the time but still, she didnít know that and that says a lot about her. You have no idea how my stomach dropped when Astoria found Pansy dead in her bed. I realised that Draco literally could not let go of his wife and that he literally could not talk to her about her problems BECAUSE SHE WAS DEAD OH GOD.

At least now Astoria knows why Pansy never spoke Daphne for so so long, that mystery is solved at least (SHE WAS VERY VERY DEAD AND UNABLE TO COMMUNICATE WITH HER BEST FRIEND).

That was hella creepy.

This was hella good.

But I still want to punch Astoria in the face.

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Review #32, by AlexFanMorbid: Cousin Larry

27th August 2014:
Well Iíve certainly never read a story in which Teddy Lupin draws himself dying in various ways. I can see why Harry and Ginny were worried however, Iíd be pretty concerned if my kid was depicting his death in different ways. Itís refreshing to read a story in which Teddy doesnít know what heís doing, heís not the perfect boy whoís got his career figured out and is making a lot of money. I like how he got himself kicked out of the Auror training program for beating up another Auror that deserved what he said (Although I think a, ďYeah, and youíre pretty subpar coming from a family with no werewolves,Ē wouldíve sufficed just as well).

I thought your description of Merlin was a bit vague because it gave me absolutely no idea of what exactly he was. Is he a painting or some other kind of being that didnít want to move onto the land of the dead? What is going on with Merlin? That being said, I thought adding in Merlin was a really unique idea. He seemed like the perfect friend for someone like Teddy who is interested in death.

I think youíve definitely got an interesting idea here, your Teddy is certainly different than most and I quite enjoyed reading about him. I hope that as the story goes on you go into more depth about where his fascination with death and the dead comes from. Was it sparked by his parents and now heís wondering the different ways that one can die? What is going on inside of Teddy Lupin's head?

Author's Response: I really liked writing this Teddy that doesn't have it all together. I definitely set out to write something that no one had ever read before, so I'm glad that worked the way I wanted it to!

Merlin in this story and especially this chapter is supposed to be a bit of a mystery. His character is definitely up to interpretation. I've gotten a lot of guesses as to what he is, but I think this is the first time I've seen someone guess that he's a painting!

It's so great that you found my idea interesting! I can't say that I unravel Teddy and his strange fascinations completely in this story, (some of that is saved for the prequel) but I will say that his parents played a part in his obsession with all things death related.

Thank you so much for this review!


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Review #33, by AlexFanHear us Roar: Growing Up Lonely

27th August 2014:
Iím here with your review!

I liked how you showed the reader the two different versions of Ivy. The one that was deemed acceptable by society and the person that she truly was because it gives the impression that she has a different attitude around different people depending on who the situation calls for her to be. She comes from a world where being pretty seems to be the most important thing and being herself is difficult when everyone else seems to be trying to shove something else down your throat.

The art of conversation was boring, hairstyles were boring, men were boring, and make-up was boring. Amen Ivy, Amen! Her mother mentioning that she had to change who she was in order to appeal to men just got my blood boiling and I had to calm myself down and remind myself that this was only a fictional character. Itís so sad that Ivyís mother grew up thinking this way and that she was trying to force this kind of thinking down Ivyís throat. Claudette wasnít taught affection or love, she was taught that her looks were the most important things about her and that as long as she looked good then everything else would fall into place.

I would feel bad for Claudette if it wasnít for the fact that the woman has no soul. She doesnít know the meaning of affection or love. Her own child is a burden to her, she locks Ivy up in her room because she doesnít fit into what is her image of a perfect little girl. She has convinced herself into thinking that the only thing needed to keep a husband was to have a pretty face no matter what age you were that she has completely forgotten and even blinded herself to the fact that looks are nice and well but there needs to be affection (I totally called her husband cheating on her though).

It was so sad to see the life sucked out of Ivy by Mrs. Thimmel. She went from this happy curious child to this little eleven-year-old that got annoyed by the light thrown from the chandelier instead of being delighted by it and conforming to what everyone wanted.

Eleven year olds should not know how to hate. I thought that was a really strong sentence that you had there because it basically summed up everything that Ivy had endured up until that social event when she was eleven. It really made you aware of just how much this girl had been forced to go through, to the point that she now resented people around her because of who she had to become.

I loved your descriptions in this chapter and the attention to detail that you paid. It really felt like I was there with Ivy and experiencing everything that she was experiencing. It was like I was in the house with her and going through the motions with her and that was really great. I enjoyed learning about her childhood because it made her more real to me and Iím able to connect with her a lot more now that I know what kind of a childhood that she had. After seeing what Ivy was put through I canít imagine how much of a relief it was for her to go to a place that accepted her for who she was and even encouraged her to be herself instead of this nice dead person that her family wanted her to be.

Author's Response: Cheers for such a lovely and detailed review, first of all. :)

My goodness, the beginning of that chapter changed a million times (and I'm only exaggerating a little). The whole "two halves" thing was a really late addition which I was still a little worried about, so I'm glad you decided to mention it in your review as a positive!

Oh God I've never written a character I've hated more than Claudette freaking Pond. She does have no soul! Personally I think she's far more evil than Mrs Thimmel (though that woman is plenty evil), so I have to admit I did pile a few lines in there (the one about men, especially) to make sure that although I hope people get that she's only an ugly product of her own upbringing and society, people don't feel sorry for her. Rather, that they think that the world is trying to restore some karmic balance by having her husband cheat on her. Yeah, so my blood boiled as well having to write that horrible woman.

Oh my goodnes I just love this review so much! You noticed the chandelier part! Yes! I was worried about having to cover so many years in so few words, so I thought sticking little things in there like how differently she reacts to something at six as opposed to eleven might help bridge the gap. So happy you noticed it!

Thanks so much for you review. It was just brilliant! :D

~Aimee~


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Review #34, by AlexFanThe Monopoly on Honour: When Love absents itself

26th August 2014:
Sorry for taking so long with this but I'm here.

I don't know if I mentioned this last time but the more of this story that I read the more interested I am in what happens to these characters. I think you picked a great time after the war to write about.

I liked how you showed the repercussion on Lucius's marriage because of the decisions that he not only made for himself but for the rest of his family. Because you can see that Lucius cares about his family but the fact that he seems to be worrying about humiliation more than anything else might give Narcissa the impression that he doesn't care and that he still isn't getting the message. It was really interesting seeing a man like Lucius, someone who is always in control of his emotions lose it and resort to tears because he does not know how to fix the mess that he has made.

All of this time and effort that he put into trying to give his family the best life that he could and this is what it all lead to. That would be hard for anyone to deal with.

I feel like had it been anyone else in these characters situation, they would've accepted their fate and cherished the time that they had left but that's not in the Malfoy or Greengrass blood. You go down fighting even if you know that you're a lost cause.

I like how you're building up to the hearing. Showing the readers how different characters are dealing with their current problem in their own way but still reminding the reader that this trial is going to happen by adding in more and more details about what each characters trial is most likely going to be like and what the sentences for those already convicted were and what the Malfoys can expect when it's their turn. The more you talk about the hearing, the more excited I get for it.

I think you're pacing it's good, it's slow but for a story like this I feel like it needs to be slow in order for the reader to really process and understand what's going on with everyone. It adds to the serious tone of the story.

Author's Response: Don't worry about taking your time - I completely understand :) we all have RL.

Gosh, thank you so much :) That is exactly what I was going for, so thank you.

On Lucius - I was a bit mean, wasn't I? But I quite honestly just could not resist, and hopefully it was a realistic conversation. I really enjoyed writing that scene - something about taking Lucius and Narcissa to some sort of breaking point.

Oh, the Malfoys - Lucius at least - have every intention of going down with a great a bang as possible. Lost cause - yes, in way. Simply because I absolutely cannot see the Malfoys blindly accepting and fitting into the Post-War world. Not because they are necessarily evil or anything like that, but simply because I think that too much has happened.

Ah, the trials. And yes, the idea was to keep the trials at the forefront as much as possible, but sort of in constantly in the background as well, if that makes sense? I think I sort of see the trials as a sword of damocles hanging over their heads, as something in their futures that comes inexorably closer, and that they cannot escape. It reminds me of a Pippin quote from Lord of the Rings, 'I don't want to be in a battle. But waiting on the edge of one I can't escape is even worse.' (I've been reading and watching waaay too much Tolkien lately :p ) I'm also very excited about the trials.

I'm glad you think I have the appropriate pacing, so thank you! I suppose it's something I am quite worried about, wondering whether I'm keeping the momentum going in each chapter.

Thank you :)


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Review #35, by AlexFanYear Five: Behind the Mirror

26th August 2014:
Sorry I took so long with this but weekends are never good times for reviewing apparently so I'm here today!

I'm so glad that I haven't been totally useless with my reviews, I feel quite proud of myself right now actually.

I liked the more light-hearted feel of this chapter as opposed to what seemed to be brooding from all of the characters in the previous chapters.

I liked how you showed that not everyone was as into house rivalry as Harry and his friends seemed to be. The party showed that whatever problems the houses had with each other everyone was capable of getting over them and getting along and having fun together. It was kind of sad that Tristan was the only Slytherin there because it's kind of like no matter what everyone seems to still have problems with Slytherins but at the same time, it doesn't seem as if Tristan actually likes any of the people from his house, so it was best that no one from Slytherin was there.

I especially loved how Tristan and Oliver seemed to be getting along. Not everyone would be able to just forgive and forget something that Oliver did but he and Tristan seemed to have moved on from that little spit of theirs. Then again, they could've just been drunk so who knows.

I also liked how you showed what different spells were used for by different people. Tristan and his friends do recreational spells because it's fun and for other reasons whereas people like Siobhan do it to help keep them going during crunch time and to keep themselves focussed.

I was so happy to see the discovery of the kitchens because it adds some background to how Fred and George learned about the place (although you'd think they would've figured out what with the map and all). But I was very excited to see that.

Again, sorry for the delay with this!

Author's Response: Hello again! Thank you so much for the reviewww!!!

Yeah, I ended up adding a LOT of fluff to this chapter last minute (DANCE OFF?!?!?!), because I try to inject a little light-heartedness into all the angst as much as I can :)

I feel like ALL the Slytherins aren't bad--but Tristan just kind of writes them all off because of the bad apples. Then of course, no one would bother to invite any :(

And yeah, after seeing parties get blown up and become ragers when I was this age--I figured tons of people from different houses would end up just showing up.

I am definitely FAR from disliking Wood; their little conflict was a lot to do with prejudices and misunderstandings, so I wanted to give them both the opportunity to work past it. And yeah, it helped that he was drunk!

The same way I thought of magic being abused recreationally, I realized people might use it for studying. Definitely a common occurrence at my college, unfortunately. (I mean, not MAGIC, obviously, but medication).

And AH! The map! You raise a GREAT point! Although, I might be able to explain it away: once when Harry used the map, it sort of gave him the password. But for the kitchens, you have to tickle the pear--and since (in canon), people are labeled dots, then there's no way to indicate "TICKLE PEAR".

Thank you so much for the review, and no worries about delays!

xoxo
Roisin


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Review #36, by AlexFanYear Five: Three Times Charmed

21st August 2014:
Oh goodness, I feel so bad for Isobel because she seems like such a nice person and I hate that she's so insecure about herself. She sounds like she's absolutely gorgeous. She's curvy, pretty, and incredibly intelligent, Isobel has it all. But the insecurity is what makes her more believable because the majority of girls out there are insecure about how they look even if there's nothing to worry about.

But while Isobel seems to be put together at all times of the day, Laurel is the exact opposite (I think Laurel needs to talk to somebody, because not wearing make-up is her choice but not being able to shower and a bad sleeping pattern, something is wrong here. She should have time to do basic things).

Since Isobel seems to have more control over herself than a lot of her other friends, I think it would take everyone the longest to figure out that she has a problem because she'd hide her feelings from everyone. I just feel like I really relate to Isobel because I know that feeling that she seems to has where she needs to have control of her surroundings and being very reserved about her feelings.

I don't know about you, but cassette tapes can be hella dangerous. My mom would have cassette tapes lying around when I was little and I'd just pulled the plastic out of it for fun and you could strangle someone with that stuff.

Laurels' cheering habit has already become a problem, it seems like this girl is going to crash and burn if she doesn't watch herself or get some help. I feel like if she doesn't do something soon about her Cheering Charm problem, things are going to become too much for her and she's going to hit a wall.

I like how even Tristan and his friends know when the time to smoke is and when it's time to study. I actually admire their ability to push aside their daily activities and focus on their work.

(Ah yes, the ancient Hufflepuff secret of having the kitchens right outside of your common room. On a side note, I actually really admire how much you've connected all of your characters into the story. You picked up the most obscure references and names and turned them into something relevant to your story.)

Author's Response: Yes! Exactly! Thank you! That was something I really wanted to explore here--because you're right, insecurity is a shame, and often, a waste. At the same time, it's far, far too common.

I liked the idea of Isobel and Laurel being best friends who contrasted one another, but how it can go too far. I also think that Laurel's reliance on Isobel has kind of let her get out of control, because she knows Isobel will pick up the pieces.

And you are spot on about Isobel! For each of the characters, I pulled something from my own personality, so that I could write it realistically (and a lot of attributes were inspired by my friends at this age)--so I'm really glad you can relate, and that it seems true to life!

Haha, casette tapes--good point. Then again, you could always use shoelaces or something to the same end, so I doubt Filch would be vexed in that regard ;)

And most definitely--Laurel's behavior is FAR from sustainable.

You're the first person to comment on their ability to prioritize. Something I get into later, is how it's very often the cleverest of kids who end up going down these dangerous paths. Partially because they question the status quo, and choose to live outside of it. While that's admirable on its own, being young is to generate many ideas, and they are necessarily only partially formed. It's easy to lose sight of important lines one might be crossing :(

Hahaha, your note on "Ancient Hufflepuff Wisdom" made me lol. And THANK YOU--before I even started writing, I found canon affiliations for all of the characters :D. I'm glad you appreciated!

You are wonderful, this was such a thoughtful review, and it was so encouraging to read!


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Review #37, by AlexFanBertie Bottís Every Flavoured Beans: Introduction

21st August 2014:
I LOVE IT I LOVE IT I LOVE IT I LOVE IT! This was such a different start to a story featuring Rose and it was a breath of fresh air really to read something like this. I love how you started with what happened in the end and then went back to the beginning to tell the story that lead up to Rose crying while wearing a white dress (although to be perfectly honest, I'm not entirely sure if she was crashing her cousins wedding in the beginning or if something else was going on).

I liked your version of Rose because I've gotten so used to seeing her as this extremely intelligent, sometimes uptight girl who has got her life figured out and your version was different and relatable (not that the other version of Rose wasn't but this one where she doesn't know what to do with her life is something that a lot of people her age are faced and struggle with). I liked how she was still figuring out what she was trying to do but since Rose seems to like Honeydukes so much, she could look into something to do with making candy? She could make up her own sweet and then take a sample to a company and try to get them to mass produce it for her? But basically, I like that Rose sticks out like a sore thumb among the rest of her family members.

The pace for this chapter was quite fast but I think it worked really well for your introduction, because you set up Rose's situation and the basics for the relationships in the rest of the story so that the reader has some idea of what's going to happen but it didn't go by so fast that it felt choppy and disconnected. I feel like I already know Rose a little bit just from this beginning and that I can connect with her on some level about things.

All in all, I personally think you've got a great start to your story here and I'm actually really excited to see where the rest of this goes to be honest with you (not even joking, I'm bouncing in my seat)!

Author's Response: Thank you so much!!
I'm really glad you like Rose, and yes a lot of people do suffer with not knowing what to do in life (All of my friends and myself included!)! That sounds like a really awesome idea for her future actually! Not exactly what I was planning, but we'll see where the story takes me :)

I'm also very glad the pacing was alright. When writing this intro it was quite hard trying to figure out the line between too fast and information overload!

Thank you so much for the amazing review!!

-Rosiful


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Review #38, by AlexFanYear Five: Loose Lips

20th August 2014:
When you mentioned that you wanted to see what I would pick up I got all nervous and started thinking, "oh no, this is some reading comprehension test, I am not prepared for this!" (I was never any good at reading comprehension).

I never really thought about Professor Sprout substituting as the school guidance councillor but I can see it happening, she seems as good a choice as any of the other teachers (except for Quirrel, that is). And I think that Tristan really should go and talk to her about his problems. I'm no doctor but it seems to me as if he has some sort of depression. I think Laurel needs to talk about what's going on in her life as well because she seems to be having some problems also.

I HAVE NEVER BEEN SO MAD AT OLIVER WOOD IN MY LIFE HE IS SUCH A JERK FACE OH MY GOD. He always seemed like such a nice person to me but it never even occurred to me that Oliver could be prejudiced in any way. But I see that that was a stupid assumption to make. It wasn't only the pureblood elitists that were prejudiced, other people could've been prejudiced as well. I hate how Tristan didn't defend himself, but Oliver had backup and Tristan didn't so he would've lost in a fight anyway (unless he was really good at Defense). I just got so mad at Oliver though for being such a bully and the shaming! Like no, Oliver, stop that right now. YOU SHOULD BE BETTER THAN THIS.

Gryffindors can be especially smug and from this new portrayal of Gryffindors, I can see where the dislike is coming from but it seems like some of the Slytherins are even worse than some of the Gryffindors. I mean really, who sits around talking about lineage, sure people discuss family but it's never usually used as a way of figuring out someone's worth. But at least Tristan isn't afraid to tell the Slytherins to shut up.

I like Tristan but I pity him more than anything and I just want to wrap him up in a hug and protect him from the world. He seems like such a good kid, who maybe made some not so great choices, and I just want to make him feel better.

Author's Response: Aha! No worried, this review is great!

Yeah, I figured Hogwarts must have SOME kind of guidance situation (I mean, with 500 to 1000 teenagers, you'd have to). I chose Sprout because she's not usually given very much play, and the "guidance counselor" role was somewhat inspired by Tessa Wall in the Casual Vacancy (who bears a passing resemblance to Sprout).

And yeah, I also put in a guidance counselor because they NEED ONE.

I WAS SO HAPPY TO READ YOUR ALL CAPS REPLY TO WOOD! I always liked Wood, so I thought it was interesting the posit him as a jerk face. I mean, in canon he can be a little manic, and overenthusiastic at times, so I tried to really draw out those qualities here. I'm still a Wood fan, but you know, teenagers make mistakes/can be jerks from time to time (plus, I feel like his personality would bristle my OCs).

I'm a massive Gryffindor, and they were SO important in canon, that I liked the idea of looking at them another way. Obviously, the perspective the characters have is slightly biased, but then again, canon perspectives of Slytherin or Hufflepuff were too!

And yeah, Tristan's Housemates are pretty nasty. We only got to see into Slytherin lair once in canon, so I wanted to imagine in what ways it would be horrible for Tristan to have to live there :(

That is EXACTLY how one should feel about Tristan! So glad for that! I alternate between wanting to hug him, and wanting to slap him.

Thank you so much for taking the time to leave this review!

xoxo
Roisin


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Review #39, by AlexFanRoar: One of Us

19th August 2014:
Hey there, dropping by with your requested review.

First off, I like your character Kat, she seems to be a likeable character and if I got to know her a lot more as the story went on, I have a feeling that I would be able to relate to her. She seems like the kind of girl that I would want to be friends with.

Second of all, James. I see that you've fallen into the old fanon cliche where James does nothing except ask Lily out 24/7 (and apparently stalks her considering he actually followed her to the Black Lake) and to be perfectly honest with you, that isn't really canon James. In the books we only ever see him ask Lily out a total of one time, and considering that he was a part of a group of boys that held the high opinions of many of their peers and most likely their teachers as well, I don't think that James would let his pride get stomped on by Lily over and over again. There's also the fact that since James is so popular with most of the student body, he most likely didn't spend all of his time pining after Lily and probably went out on quite a few dates, just like Lily probably did. And besides, having James constantly asking out Lily just makes him seem creepy and annoying. He's supposed to be one of the most intelligent people in his year along with Sirius and I'd like to think that James would know that harassing Lily with declarations of love wouldn't be the way to win her affections.

That being said, I don't mean that I hate your version of James, he seems to have a lot of potential in terms of maturing into a responsible adult, and perhaps could even take an interest in girls other than Lily just so that he can see how serious his feelings are for her. I'm actually very interested in seeing the events that result in him growing up.

While I do enjoy your Lily for the most part (I can never hate Lily), I feel like she falls into the old James/Lily cliche a little bit as well. Lily is supposed to be this bright, incredibly kind witch and it seems like she has a bit of an overreaction to James asking her out. It's never stated that Lily actually hates James (just as it's never stated that James asked her out all the time), she just doesn't have a problem with calling him out when he's being a bully. I feel like she wouldn't be the type of person to snap at someone just for asking her out on a date, a little annoyed and tired, sure but not outright snap at them like she did to James. She could maybe develop some sort of calming technique if James does keep asking her out so that she doesn't snap at him so much and to control her anger.

And I do understand where she's coming from with her crush, it's tough to have feelings for someone who is involved with someone else or doesn't even about your existence. Everyone deals with rejection in a different way and I'm interested in seeing how Lily handles her crush and how she moves on from it.

For a first fanfiction this was actually pretty well written, you had good description going on and your dialogue flowed pretty smoothly. I like how you introduced the characters in a way that wasn't totally overwhelming and it kept my interest. I got to know a little bit about what these people were like through their actions and the way that they interacted with each other which was also great. I would definitely be interested in finding out more about what happens with all of the characters in the story and see how they progress. I really hope that you don't forget about Peter either, it happens in a lot of fanfictions, the poor guy just seems to be forgotten and pushed to the side. Ignoring the fact that he was a traitor in the end, there was a reason that he was a part of the Marauders.

And I know I was a little bit harsh about James and Lily but I just get very passionate about the characterization of the two of them, especially as of late because so many people have pointed out all of the cliches in the fandom that aren't actually canon.

But I hope I helped out at least in some way (and feel free to come back for more reviews if I haven't scared you off with this mammoth review).

Author's Response: Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for this wonderful review!

Your comments about both James and Lily were spot on, and I'√ā¬ôll definitely keep them in mind as I write future chapters, maybe even touch up this chapter in a little bit. I am very aware of the dangerous Lily/James cliche, and that you called me out on stumbling into that hole is great because now I'll be more vigilant when I'√ā¬ôm writing those characters.

I do believe that some stories have a very distinct 'two-sided James'√ā¬ô, the asking-lily-out-all-the-time side and the I'm-actually-an-incredible-human-being-that'√ɬā√ā¬Ä√ɬā√ā¬ôs-a-dream-guy side. I think these two sides should meld into one person with different moods that are each slightly flawed. In other words, an actual human! Whoa! For example, he'√ɬā√ā¬Ä√ɬā√ā¬ôs super 'annoying'√ɬā√ā¬Ä√ɬā√ā¬ô, super 'immature'√ɬā√ā¬Ä√ɬā√ā¬ô etc. (at least that'√ɬā√ā¬Ä√ɬā√ā¬ôs how Lily sees it) in the first half of the story, and then suddenly he's AMAZING and everything about him is kind, collected and courageous. That√ɬā√ā¬Ä's SO unrealistic. I think James should be all of those things together, with him growing as a person so that he changes gently into someone than Lily would want to date and later, marry. Just because I think that, though, doesn'√ɬā√ā¬Ä√ɬā√ā¬ôt mean I wrote it. Cue me furiously rethinking life, the universe and everything.

The same things goes for Lily. She is smart, and kind and really a good person. And even if she has flaws, trying to make her not a Mary-Sue and also not a complete terror is difficult. She is studious, and does have generosity in her blood, even to people that greatly annoy her, like James, and she handles a lot of things really expertly because she has TONS of empathy for everyone and everything. Something that is inspiring and impressive. Lily has a path of growth ahead, so of course she can'√ɬā√ā¬Ä√ɬā√ā¬ôt be perfect at the start (although she shouldn't be at the end either), but she can'√ɬā√ā¬Ä√ɬā√ā¬ôt be a stupid, grouchy, angsty mess either. And that crush on Tim? That'√ɬā√ā¬Ä√ɬā√ā¬ôs going places. Definitely.

And as for Peter? He's not forgotten. It'√ɬā√ā¬Ä√ɬā√ā¬ôs hard not to think of him as a Death Eater from the word go, but he's going to get his own chapter and his own fight and story line. Leaving him out would be just plain rude.

This fan fiction is probably something I will cringe at in a few years, but at the moment I'√ɬā√ā¬Ä√ɬā√ā¬ôm kind of figuring out my style as I go along. Sometimes it might be a tangled mess, but I'√ɬā√ā¬Ä√ɬā√ā¬ôm going to work with it. I guarantee edits along the way, probably some blips, but with people like you encouraging and critiquing me, I think this story will go a lot smoother than it would have otherwise!

Again, thanks for the incredible review.

Much, much love,
Alena

(oh and sorry for the weird symbols, computer malfunction!)


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Review #40, by AlexFanYear Five: R

19th August 2014:
I HAD THIS WRITTEN OUT BUT THEN I ACCIDENTALLY CLOSED THE TAB AND IT WAS GONE AND I AM SO SO MAD RIGHT NOW!

But anyway, quickly gonna type up what I had before. I think Emily and Tristan are a lot closer than the rest of their friends since they stayed up talking to each other for so long. I always wondered whether students used their owls as a form of instant messaging so I was glad to see that someone else had the same thought as me.

Emily does make a very good point though, if the Slytherins are under the lake then how on earth is Tristan's owl getting out of his dormitory? Or would the dorms be above water since there would need to be some sunlight coming into the room (and the more I think about this the more it makes sense that it would be this way).

Isobel is definitely the smarter one out of the lot of them. She seems to have more control over the drugs that she intakes and when as opposed to Laurel who is in desperate need of them (I KNEW THAT CHEER CHARM WAS GOING TO LEAD TO AN ADDICTION).

Oh, and just something that I thought I'd point out (and I'm aware that I'm being nitpicky about this but I'm a canon stickler for about 99.9% of things) but students got their time tables the day after the Opening Feast or Ceremony or whatever you want it to call it.

Also, I read all of your endnotes which was quite a feat for me because I don't always read author notes or any form of notes at the end of chapters but I'm glad I did this time because it provided me with a lot of information.

Author's Response: I hate when that happens! I used to spend so much time writing and responding to reviews that my session would time out and they'd all get lost!

I feel like, before I had text messaging (I was like 18 before my phone finally caught up--I'm a luddite), sometimes emails would turn into sort of rapid back-and-forth thing. I wanted to recreate how that comes to be.

Haha, the owl-and-the-lake. So I knew Slytherin lair was there, so I HAD to mention it (because: canon), but it's also kind of a joke, because I never DO explain how it happens (MAGIC). Perhaps the dorm windows are above the water-line?

As the story progresses, you'll learn that they're each actually quite clever, but Isobel is the most Ravenclaw-y (right now). She's definitely the most disciplined. And yeah, I figure if you have wands around all the time, and wands can make you happy, at least a FEW people will start doing that a lot, but then everything must have a downside. TEEN ANGST+WANDS=TROUBLE.

AND THANK YOU for the note about timetables! I will definitely revise that!!

I have the terrible habit of writing long and rambling end notes, it's just I did SO MUCH research, and not all of it ended up in the story (I have really detailed backstories and family histories for all the characters, plus a WEIRD amount of research into muggle technologies of the early nineties/late eighties).

Thank you for the review! So sorry for the troubles!


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Review #41, by AlexFanCrossing the Borderline: Albus: The Confrontations

18th August 2014:
I KNEW IT I KNEW SOMEONE WOULD CATCH ONTO THEIR AWKWARDNESS, WHAT DID I TELL YOU?! But now that it's written in the school newspaper it's going to attract even more attention to Aaliyah and Albus. They're going to have to step up their game.

OOOoOOooOO DRAMA! There is tension everywhere and obviously there were going to be people that would be unhappy about the whole thing but I'm especially interested in what's going on with Rose here (maybe you mentioned this in the chapters before in which case I'm going to go back and read them again just to make sure I'm caught up). Am I detecting a little bit of jealous in Rose, is this what I'm seeing? Or is Rose mad about what went on between Aaliyah and Fred and that's why she hates her (because it kind of sounds like she's grasping at straws when she accused Aaliyah of cheating on her OWLs).

I loved the interaction between Aaliyah, Albus, and Scorpius during that little list bit because they seemed at ease for the first time in a while. I could've believed that Al and Aa were dating in that moment.

As much as I pity Fred, it's annoying me how he's treating Aaliyah like a piece of meat (and Albus as well). Like, if she wanted to be with Fred, she could've done that before she started going out with Albus. Clearly Aaliyah doesn't want to be with him so I highly doubt that even if she wasn't dating Albus she'd take Fred back. LET THE GIRL DECIDE GUYS!

I'm going to go back and refresh my memory of the first two chapters so that I can be fully prepared for this story.

Author's Response: Yes, someone did catch on. YOU WERE RIGHT, YAY.

Rose is a complicated character. Actually most of the characters here are complicated lol. She isn't jealous, but she doesn't like Aaliyah... at all. She basically hates her which will be a problem for Albus and Aaliyah later on. That's why she accuses her of cheating on her OWLs even though Aaliyah didn't. More of Aaliyah and her history is going to be shown from time to time in the story.

Scorpius is one of my favorites out of all of the characters so I always like to write him. Albus and Aaliyah are getting better at this whole dating thing (finally)... soon it'll be a natural skill.

Fred... I find it really hard to like him for some reason. Maybe it's just the way I wrote him haha. Albus and Fred probably should stop treating her as a piece of meat and they hopefully will soon (okay... maybe not Fred). Albus' protectiveness of her kind of sparked in this chapter and will continue to grow from here.

Thank you so so much for the wonderful review. I had the BEST time reading it! I love it when the readers understand the story and can understand the characters to a point. THANKS again, Grace!!

~Sama


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Review #42, by AlexFanThe New Pride of Portree: An Off Day

18th August 2014:
The Review Battle gave me a good reason to read this a week before I wanted to.

Fitz can't seem to catch a break. I mean, of course he was never going to get back to full range, and eighty percent is pretty damn good considering but at the same time it must've been hard to hear anyway. I think Fitz needs to find some other outlet for his anger instead of letting it out on his team when they don't deserve it. The rumour about Ballycastle seems like it could be good if it ended up being true. I mean, it would mean long distance but I'm sure that Molly and Fitz could manage, I've just gotten used to the two of them working together that I'm a little sad at the idea that they might not be anymore. Speaking of Fitz and Molly, it looks like there may be some good news in terms of their relationship as well. Meghan might end up letting them be open about the fact that Fitz and Molly are dating (she ships them just as much as the rest of the team does let's face it).

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Review #43, by AlexFanYear Five: The Hex Head Express

18th August 2014:
Coming back for chapter 2! Sorry for taking so long but I had no idea my weekends would be so busy this month. Anyway!

I'm usually not a fan of alternating point of views in a story because more often than not, I can never tell which voice it is from the cast of characters. That being said, I have a feeling that this might not be one of those stories because Isobel sounds a little bit different than Tristan.

I was a little confused when you said that Laurel had cheered up, I wasn't sure if it was some kind of wizard drug so I was glad that you clarified that it was a Cheering Charm that they were using. Honestly, Cheering Charms seem to be the least dangerous thing that Tristan (and the rest of his friends as well) have probably done. I can see where the danger of using the Cheering Charm one too many times would be though, you'd end up becoming entirely dependent on a spell to keep you happy. It's never occurred to me how some spells could end up being turned into a kind of drug for some people.

(I love how Fred and George made puns about it though, that was pretty funny). I've always enjoyed reading fics where students give their opinions about Harry Potter because you never really got to see that in the books so I always love reading about what other students besides Gryffindor's might have thought of Harry (DON'T YOU GO INSULTING RON FRED!)

It's so weird to think that the Weasley twins might have done drugs while at Hogwarts (it's really weird to imagine anyone doing drugs at Hogwarts considering the amount of stuff that happened during Harry's time but then again, not everyone came close to dying every year . . . )

I like Isobel a lot more than I like Tristan, she's a lot more reserved than him, I can see that but I think that's what I like about her, I find her more relatable. I don't know, I just really like Isobel from what I've read so far.

And I loved that part where you added in Hermione, I love the little bits and pieces that you slip into the story to remind the reader that this is in fact taking place at the same time that Harry is attending Hogwarts, or going to at least.

Author's Response: Thank you for the review! And no worries!

Yes, I wanted my rotating POVs to be VERY clear, so I always capitalize their names when introducing their perspectives. And I'm glad you found the voices distinct, because I worked SUPER hard on that (Tristan's has a lot of long blocks of text, Isobel uses a lot of parentheses, and so on).

Ah! Recreational Magic! An idea I find *very* interesting and *very* plausible. And yes, there is most definitely a downside to it ;) I figure that a lot of teenagers go through an experimental phase, so at least a few of them would mess around with magic as a mild-altering experience.

The Weasley's smoking was paying service to some areas of the fandom that INSIST that they seem like stoners. I think that's going a bit far, but certainly I can imagine them indulging a bit when they were young. (Again: teenagers).

And yeah, examining how other students feel about the famous Harry Potter was a really fun thing for me. Harry's wild adventures are something of a running gag in this story :)

I'm glad you like Isobel! Each of them is very different, and yes, Tristan just begs to get slapped on several occasions. But hopefully you'll develop some sympathy for him.

Aha, yes, there is definitely LOTS of canon nods--and the story will continue to reference events in PS!

Thank you for the review!

xoxo
Roisin





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Review #44, by AlexFanClash: Explore

18th August 2014:
The beginning of this was so NORMAL. It was just Rose and Albus sitting around and bantering with each other. Sure they were in a dead version of the Burrow but that's like a celebration by them at this point. I love how Rose is freaking out about the fact that it would take weeks to translate the runes and Albus is just like "God Rose it's like you know nothing about me."

I thought it was really nice that Albus got Rose a gift for her birthday, and it was nice to see a glimpse of some emotion from him as well. Albus may be stone cold about 99.9% of the time but in the moment when he thought Rose didn't like what he'd given her, he let himself actually be bothered by the fact that she wouldn't like his gift (although I'd be more inclined to believe that he was annoyed over the fact that he put in so much effort and Rose didn't even want his potion).

By this point in the story it's obvious that Albus likes control (it was obvious even before now) but I get the feeling that even if he doesn't have control over a situation, it isn't going to stop him from poking at whatever he's investigating. The lack of control he has will most likely annoy Albus but it would probably make him even more determined to understand what is proving difficult instead of abandoning it. It's like he won't stop until he DOES have control over something that can't be controlled.

Something that's always bothered me about Albus is his possessiveness when it comes to Rose. Because it's not cute, it's creepy, and despite the fact that Rose has more than pointed out to him that she is a human being and not an object, it seems like Albus doesn't quite seem to get it. He's fine with Rose doing whatever she wants as long as it's on her own but the minute that someone else, like Scorpius, gets involved it's like Albus feels as if it's his duty to keep people away from Rose. And I hate how Rose has just come to accept that this isn't going to change, because I know Albus isn't going to change, but it's just sad how she's just come to accept the fact that the relationship that she has with Albus is probably always going to be unhealthy.

There's really really small things that Albus does occasionally that shows that he cares about Rose but at the same time it doesn't change the fact that the two of them have a really dysfunctional relationship AND JUST AGH I HAVE MIXED FEELINGS ABOUT THEIR RELATIONSHIP OKAY.

One thing that I really love about your writing is that I can immediately tell when the point of view of the story had changed. Like when the story had switched to Walker's point of view, I could tell from the first few words that the story had stopped temporarily and I'd just like to congratulate you on that because I've come across very few authors that can pull off different points of views in a story well (it's actually a huge pet peeve of mine).

Hugo's abduction, that can't be good (although that's not saying much since abductions are generally bad things).

Author's Response: YES THE BEGINNING OF THIS WAS NORMAL. I felt so weird writing it tbh, because my characters RARELY just sit around and chat like that. But it was a good way to get some exposition in.

Glad you liked the potion-gift scene! It's one of my favorites for this chapter!

Albus definitely loves control and he certainly isn't by any means trying to be 'cute' haha. Your feelings are justified, but I wouldn't say he's trying to keep her 'away' from people...it's more that he feels threatened. Anyway, you'll just have to see what becomes of their relationship! I have plenty of surprises in store!

It's ok, I have mixed feelings about all my characters all the time haha.

Hugo's abduction, coming up! Thanks for R&Ring, Alexfan! I really appreciate it.
You really do leave the best reviews :)


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Review #45, by AlexFanThe Unsinkable Molly Prewett: Gimme Little Sign

14th August 2014:
I knew it, I knew that Arthur and Molly got distracted by each other in class (and I was right about the muggle gushing as well, it just happened a lot sooner than I thought it would've). It's cute how Arthur is trying to act all cool around Molly when he really doesn't need to because she's already interested in him.

I couldn't help but giggle when he ran to Gryffindor Tower cheering all the way. I just knew he would and I could picture him jumping around as he went. I think you've captured canon Arthur perfectly, you can still see the sweetness and the eagerness that he has in his older self in this younger version of yours. I just have Molly/Arthur feels going on right now that I was not prepared for.

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Review #46, by AlexFanThe Unsinkable Molly Prewett: I Can't Help Myself

14th August 2014:
Arthur is hopeless (HOPELESSLY IN LOVE). And to think that a love potion would be the thing that finally got Molly to notice Arthur and start paying more attention to him. I really loved how Thad and Arthur kept silent about what happened instead of telling everyone about it. Not many people would've done the same in their situation.

Arthur has just become so in tune to Molly, I bet he would notice that she wasn't in the Great Hall without looking too hard. He's so easily distracted by her, I wonder how he gets anything done in class when she's around honestly. ARTHURS OBSESSION WITH ALL THINGS MUGGLE YES. I can just imagine him gushing to Molly about everything that he finds fascinating about muggles and her listening intently and loving how passionate he gets about the subject.

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Review #47, by AlexFanThe Unsinkable Molly Prewett: Red Rubber Ball

14th August 2014:
I just realised while reading this that Molly's punishment for the love potion was really quite small. It makes you think that stuff like this isn't really as rare as you'd think it would be. Students drugging students with love potions seems to happen often enough that the consequences for it are one detention, your Head of House hearing about it and informing your parents of what you did.

You'd think Molly would be a little bit hungover the fact that she just got turned down by the boy she likes but she seems to be moving on pretty fast to Arthur. And poor Arthur, having to hear that the girl he fancied was actually trying to slip a love potion to his friend, that must've stung a little.

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Review #48, by AlexFanThe Unsinkable Molly Prewett: You Can't Hurry Love

14th August 2014:
Wow, Molly really doesn't beat around the bush, does she. Usually when a girl says that she's going to do something in order to get noticed by the object of her affections it usually doesn't mean, 'I'm going to slip him love potion.' And of course the plan didn't go well. It's like Karma is sitting on a chair with a drink, watching Molly and thinking, 'it's cute how you thought that would end well.'

And then Arthur and Thaddeus got all territorial over Molly (well, mostly Thaddeus really). At least Arthur realised that Molly wasn't a piece of meat and that she was the one who had to make the decision about which one of them she would choose. I think you could tell a lot about Arthur and Thaddeus's character just by the way that they were holding Molly's hands. Thaddeus got a little bit more possessive while Arthur was still gentle despite his growing temper.

I love how Arthur backed down when Molly chose Thaddeus. He didn't make a fuss about her decision but simply walked away because he just wanted Molly to be happy.

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Review #49, by AlexFanYear Five: Dozens of Little Televisions (1991)

13th August 2014:
I've seen this story around the most recent page and it's had great reviews from authors I trust so I added it to my reading list (but it's unfortunately at the bottom of the pile) so I'm really happy that you requested.

I can certainly see what everyone is talking about, you've certainly started your story off in an interesting way what with this Sophie character accidentally finding out about magic and all. I like how I got to know Tristan despite the fact that my impression of him was being given by someone else. I've got an idea in my head of what kind of a guy he is now so I feel like I should be able to expect some things of him as a character.

Another thing I liked was how you didn't make Tristan devastatingly handsome or tall like is usually the norm in fanfiction. He's quite average-looking by the sounds of it but that still doesn't stop the ladies (apparently). I can definitely see why he liked Sophie considering everyone else seems to really enjoy picking into his life (it was kind of sad considering she really didn't seem interested in him after their little adventure).

I found it kind of weird how totally okay Tristan's parents were with everything that happened to be honest. I mean, obviously they can't do much to him since Tristan is going off to school pretty soon, not to mention the fact that it doesn't sound like he has many mates so it's not like they're keeping him from anyone, but I felt like they should've been more worried.

I mean, I think they should've had at least some kind of talk with Tristan about what happened or something. Instead they just let him lock himself in his room with drugs. I know that if I had done what he did my parents would've given me a stern talk to that's for sure. Am I right in assuming that Tristan maybe doesn't have the best relationship with his parents and that they don't really talk to each other?

But anyway, I loved the first chapter (and feel free to come back for the rest of them).

Author's Response: Oh wow, thank you so much! That means a lot to me to hear!

And thank you for the note on Tristan's appearance! Yes, I wanted all of my characters to be realistic teenagers, and I actually think I benefited a lot by choosing faceclaims. I wrote this whole thing out, and then really carefully thought about who to choose for the images, and then went back and edited the story with those actors in mind (which also helped the dialog, because I could tell if something wasn't realistic if I couldn't imagine the actors saying it). Anyway, I chose Craig Roberts for Tristan because he often plays dark or moody characters, and while he isn't traditionally handsome, he has a *quality* (I have a TOTAL fictional-character crush on his character in Skins:Fire ;) )

Thank you for the note on the parents! I've gotten a lot of really helpful reviews recently on that point, and also realized that the ending is a bit rushed. Their nonchalance about his sneaking a girl in definitely has REASONS that get explored later, but you're right--it doesn't really make sense here. After reading your review, I TOTALLY got a really good idea for something to add to this chapter that doesn't spoil anything, but does flesh out the ending. So ThankYouThankYouThankYou!!!

I will definitely rerequest!

xoxo
Roisin


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Review #50, by AlexFanThe Internal Monologue of Annett Sinclaire Kluge: The Peculiar Childhood: A Prologue

13th August 2014:
I've seen this story around the most recent page but I never really looked into it until you requested the review.

First off, I like your main character. The thing that I like about her the most is the fact that she's not from England or North America but instead other parts of Europe. You don't usually get to see many other cultures in fanfiction so I was really excited when you mentioned Austria and her Austrian-German features. The one thing that I was surprised to learn was how advanced she was in the sciences. This girl must be really mathematically advanced, as well as incredibly advanced in all of the other subjects such as Languages (I would say English but I don't know how much English she spoke prior to moving to England). I hope that you go more into this as the story goes on, someone as smart as your main character is surely not going to have any trouble with the first year course curriculum and just speed through everything.

(I'm hoping that maybe as the story goes on we get to learn more about what kind of traditions your MC has and learn more about Austria.)

I liked how the MC's parents were scientists, that's not something that you see either, and how supportive they were of their daughter. I love how they didn't lock her up in some lab and conduct tests on her but instead just let their daughter figure things out for herself.

I think the pace was pretty good for a prologue. It was pretty fast but you still managed to set your character and their life well enough so that the reader has some connection to your MC and understands them a little bit.

In terms of humour, I can't give you much there because I personally felt like there wasn't much in your prologue but I'm sure that there's plenty more in your next chapters.

I think you've definitely got an interesting story going on here, I know I'd want to learn more about a girl who comes from a family of scientists (talk about two worlds clashing).

Author's Response: Thank you for your very helpful review! I'm glad you are interested.

Austrians are a very family-over-friends oriented culture. And work comes before play. Not to say that there is none of the latter, though. We will see this in other chapters. As for her magical studies, we will see how she does in chapter 2, actually. :)

There is more humour in the next chapters, yes.

And cultural differences will also be explored. Food, mindset, and a couple mentions of tradition, and all! Sadly, it probably won't be as much as you expect, but I have been trying to integrate more culture into the unreleased chapters upon your review. :D

I did want to create something many people have not seen before! I figured science would be an interesting place to start. I wasn't sure about how most people would react as I wrote the first couple of chapters, but all the positivity and the vocalisation of interest has been encouraging. Thank you!

As for her mathematical and linguistic skills. I don't get too much on the former. It's mostly biological and chemical stuff. For the latter, we will slowly start to realise her grasp of English as more dialogue is involved.

Again, thank you very much for taking the time to read and review. It means a lot to me. Thank you for your thoughts! :D

Cheers.


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