Reading Reviews From Member: taylorj828
531 Reviews Found

Review #26, by taylorj828Stumbling Back To You: A Love

25th January 2010:
Hi there, taylorj828 here with your review! First I want to say thanks for submitting this for the challenge. I know the characters changed along the way, haha, but this was a really wonderful piece to read, and I'm glad I had the chance to!

I liked in the first section where you descibed the clothing as moth-eaten. This immediately made me think it was Teddy, because I recall similar descriptions about his father, Lupin. And although characters don't become clones of their parents, still there is something special about an accidental resemblance, however small. Whether intentional or not, I liked that little detail.

Sorrow courses through me, bursts of it shrieking through my veins. Have I done this to him? Is it I who has let him look this way?

With this kind of language, I can immediately feel a heavy weight of emotion here. Great job with word choice and setting the mood and tone. I like your writer's voice.

I also love the cadence with the italicized lines in between the narrative. Unique and interesting, cleverly used for your story-telling.

I also liked the detail of Dominique's full name, how he didn't like it and it was intended to cause pain. These little details are excellent for developing characters. Great work!

Oh, and I loved the detail of the shadow hiding Teddy's expression. It painted the picture well, and I could see it clearly in my mind, and feel Dominique's longing to see his expression.

And of course I had to wonder why Dominique swore not to touch Teddy, though it became clear at the end, and was hinted at earlier on, that it was a forbidden romance, something he didn't want. But at the moment, you really had me intrigued, wanting to find out more!

Oh, one thing... I was a bit confused at the section where Teddy fell. It says that Dominique is on top of him, Teddy beneath him, and then Teddy's shoulders are on Dom's lap? I just can't picture how this happened, but I tend to think in pictures, so I stumble over some things like this.

As I read, I couldn't help but wonder at all the heaviness, and the dirt, the angst, the despair... I am deeply curious about what brought them here, to this point. Though the ending gives us lots of wonderful flashes of the past - well done. But I could easily read a whole novel, I think. (o:

I am complete, finding myself in a bond that I keep crawling back to, even when I have rejected it time after time after time.

Gorgeous line. Really. And it says so much.

And the ending is perfect. "An end." Not only is it the end of the story, but also seeming the end of theirs - them together, and no more leaving. Very clever! This was an fantastic story, really truly loved it! And it was your first slash, right? Wow, I would hardly believe it. This was so good, and you're a great storyteller! I'll have to check out your author's page now! Thanks for submitting this to the challenge, and I should be declaring winners sometime in early February. (o:

Author's Response: Oh, wow. Oooh, wow. What can I say after a review like that? A simple "thank you" can't even begin to cover the HUGE smile you've plastered on my face. Gah. Thank you so, so much. I don't even know what to say.

Hmm. I'll have to go check that line out! I'm definitely a visual reader as well, though I never noticed that line! I'll go through and sort that out. Thank you for bringing it to my attention!

Again, just... wow. I can't even begin to thank you. I really, really appreciate it.

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Review #27, by taylorj828The Last Man Standing: The Ball

15th January 2010:
Hey, thanks so much for participating in this challenge! Here's your promised review! (o:

I love how your opening paragraph sets the mood and tone. I like the detail about Harry seeing he looks good, but yet being unable bring himself care about that, or anything else. It's obvious even a year later he's in a lot of pain and is still trying to cope.

I like the description of Harry having monotone thoughts. Nicely done. (o:

I also find Harry's thoughts interesting as he considers their different hands, and also that Harry pulls his hand away from Ginny. Usually, when you can't love yourself, you can't be loved by someone else, either. I'm sure Ginny interprets a different meaning for his action from what Harry is actually feeling. The distance between them is quiet obvious. It's...definitely a real world I can imagine happening after all Harry went through.

I love that everyone now sees the Thestrals. It's a very powerful image. And of course it affects Harry emotionally - as I'm guessing he feels it is his fault, and he wishes no one saw the Thestrals. As if he could have protected everyone. )o: Poor boy.

It's interesting and seems very accurate that everyone would want to go to the ball because it's the first year after Voldemort was defeated. Fitting that it would be important for them to honor their smaller victories, something they may have never had a chance to achieve, without Voldemort's fall.

What was the point of feeling anything ever again if it would only be ripped abruptly from your fingers just when you thought you might be able to hold onto it forever?

Such a heavy question. I can really see Harry asking himself this and struggling with it.

I like that you build a good case for having the ball in the Room of Requirement. I wouldn't be inclined to feel it was realistic, except that you really make good reasoning for it. Great job with that! (o:

Luna and Malfoy! Ee! I'd love a Luna/Malfoy fic. hahaha! I love Luna! How fun, what a surprise! (o:

“They’ve been together this whole year Harry. Honestly, you are so immature. Get over your stupid boyish feud. I mean, I know it was like, a big deal when you were...what? Thirteen? But it’s about time to let it go.”
Harry was appalled at her. He hadn’t said anything at all, and she immediately began chewing him out!

Hahaha, ek, no kidding! Settle down, girl! She really hasn't the faintest clue what's in Harry's head, does she?

“Ginny says you never look at the stars anymore, Harry,” Luna said dreamily. “It’s a pity. They’re like the jewelry of the sky.” She stared off into space for a few moments. “You know, Harry,” she started again. “It’s okay to be scared. It’s okay to still hurt for Fred, and Lupin, and Tonks and everybody. You have done so much, Harry; for me, and for everyone else. You killed the most evil wizard to have ever lived.”

I LOVE Luna! (o: I love how she just connects with Harry.

“Why don’t you believe me Harry? When have I ever lied to you?”
Harry looked up, startled. “You haven’t,” he told her truthfully.

She has a point, Harry! I do find it amusing that Harry worries about small talk, because really, Luna hardly does small talk. It's better to get to the point with her (which he does).

It's interesting that Malfoy is attempting to be so open with Harry. Its' evident Malfoy has changed quite a lot, though I suppose being with Luna would certainly do that. But there also some lingering old ways about him - the old sharpness to him. I like that. But his opening with Harry does seem very different for him. I wonder if you plan to show us, in some way, the details about how he grew and changed. It does make sense, what he says to Harry. But the certainly went in opposite directions after the war!

I too am amazed by their civility. So, there's more eh? I'm definitely intrigued! I am worried, too, as Harry is, about Luna being with Malfoy. I hope he's not going to hurt her, especially if he plans to pursue Harry. Maybe it's Luna's big scheme. I wouldn't put it past her. But she could get hurt, too, if it's not. Anyway, thanks so much for taking the challenge! I'll announce winners after the challenge has ended. And I'd like to read more of your story, so if you don't hear from me for awhile, you certainly have my permission to let me know you've updated. (o:

Author's Response: Hey! Ooh, thanks for the long review! I am so glad you liked it! It was actually really fun to write Harry in his funk, because I can picture being like that if I was in his situation after the war.

I am glad you like Luna! This is the first time I have ever written her, even in the slightest, so Im glad she turned out well!

Yes, Malfoy is trying to change, mostly because of what Luna did for him after the war, but like you surmised, we'll (or rather you, I already know lol) learn more about his story in the next few chapters!

I dont want to give any reasoning away, but I can safely say that Luna WONT be hurt ^_^ I dont think I could do that, she's just so sweet!

Yes, the challenge is really fun so far! I am infinately glad I took it up!!! I will definately let you know when more is updated!!


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Review #28, by taylorj828Heartless: Heartless

5th January 2010:
Hey there! Thanks for taking part in the Challenge! Congrats on being the first to complete. I'm here with the promised review! (o:

Nice opening with an argument! I really like the passion in arguments or "fights." Good opener, though sad, too.

I like the lines where Harry notices it's not the walls but himself shaking. Excellent imagery, a good way to say it differently.

Aw Charlie falls short of Draco. )o: I can't help feeling sad for him, just because I really like Charlie. Even though we know little about him, he intrigues me. But if Harry liked Draco better, he never should have cheated on him. )o:

It's cute, though, that Charlie wants to dance with Harry, but also nice that Draco never forced him, since he knew Harry didn't like dancing. I'm torn. They could both be great guys. Perhaps it's just Harry, here, who isn't.

I like the idea of Draco's ambition and knowledge of wizarding government leading him to be Minister one day. It's different. Never read anyone who gave Draco that kind of credit. Interesting to consider, Malfoy as Minister. Oh, Harry. You goofed up big time.

Wow, Harry turning to Draco just after seeing the diamond from Charlie was a dead giveaway that Harry is with the wrong guy! Don't be daft, Potter!

Silence hit the room with a solid force.

Nice line. I like how you give silence - which should be like nothingness, emptiness - weight and volume and force. Excellent prose.

“No, you were heartless. You still are.”

Ouch, but I kinda have to agree with Charlie. Harry had a great thing with Malfoy, threw it away for a "great" thing with Charlie, only to tell him two years later on the day he proposes that Harry never should have left Draco. What's wrong with you, Harry?

Well, it was a great one-shot, packed full of emotion, also containing a plot and some intriguing notions within. Great work, and again, thanks for participating in the challenge! Prize winners will be announced on the thread in February.

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Review #29, by taylorj828The Other Evans: James Potter and that Crazy Confusing Carride

14th December 2009:
So I went for Chapter 2! (o: I have to say that I still love your plot and this unique idea of James and Petunia. It would certainly go a long way to explain the hatred/estrangement in Petunia's later life if James Potter came between the sisters!

I love the discussion over football! Brilliant! It's funny, but for as much as I think I know/remember about HP and the HP world, and as much as I've written some of these characters, I will still find myself surprised by something I hadn't through of before - such as what would it be like to explain a Muggle sport to a Wizard? Now, once it ran through my mind, I thought a Wizard might condemn the stupidity or boringness of Muggles, but I love that James is enchanted, and thinks the Muggle sport must be very difficult, or dangerous, or crazy. It's wonderful to find myself surprised and thinking about something new as I read your story. (o: I really like James' comments during that section.

I also enjoyed Petunia thinking in her mind about how Lily had never been interested in her sports, but was obviously laying it on thick to try and show James she cared about her sister. Great way to show us more about the sisters individually and about their relationship.

I love the heat and tension building between James and Petunia, too, of course. I like slow, tense builds myself, so this is fun for me so far. (o:

As for CC - I am still struggling with having the characters tell me so much, instead of showing me. In the beginning here James tells us all these things - like being surprised that Lily didn't think he was acting funny? I just wonder if this is really what a 17 year old guy would be thinking, or if instead he would be trying to convince himself that everything was normal and that he was most definitely not checking out his girlfriend's sister in the rear view mirror every ten minutes. Anyway, that might just by me own take on the situation, but I'd still encourage you to think about Showing vs. Telling. It will help the tension in your developing romance.

Well, anyway, that's just my opinion, and I am just one person. If it helps, great, and if it doesn't, just toss it out. (o: Great work on this storyline! I'm very intrigued and entertained!

Author's Response: Hey again! Yes, I imagine James being very excited over football, because he loves sports, and has grown up in a wizarding household, so probably has no knowledge of it. Football will come to have a pretty bit significance with James and Petunia later on :]

I was actually thinking about rewriting some aspects of this story to make more denial on James' part, so its funny that you made that comment. I think it would, like you said, be a more suited reaction.

I am glad you find this intriguing! And thanks for reviewing again!

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Review #30, by taylorj828The Octane Generation: Heading up in the world

14th December 2009:
Heya, I found this story because I thought your summary sounded interesting. (I saw you wanted help with it in the forums.) The story has a really interesting premise. I enjoyed the banter and friendship between Albus and Scorpius. It's a different kind of setup - unique, noncliched, exciting, humorous.

A little bit of CC I might offer: The first half in Hogsmeade had LOTS of dialogue lines and little narration or description, whereas the second half was more balanced. Everyone has their preferences, but it could help to bring the reader closer to the action if we had more descriptors of how the boys were speaking/shouting, which directions they were going, what it looked like around them - just a little bit more to fill in the dialogue, so we see in our minds more than just boys shouting. I think it can just be a bit difficult to start the story out heavy on dialogue without giving the readers a little bit more to hold onto besides our own image of Hogsmeade in flames.

It any of that helps at all, please take it, and if not, then just throw it out - as I am just one person, and it's just my opinion.

Otherwise, it was all very exciting and funny (like the man setting the village on fire because of his wife's affair, and then the two getting married, ha!). And the boys both being headboys so they can get sent to Japan. It's a very interesting plot and premise. But a bit more detail about what's happening around them or even inside them (thoughts/fears/concerns/motives) might give readers more to grasp, and more investment into the boys, as we dig deep into your world.

Anyway, very interesting. I think you've got a nice story here. (o:

Author's Response: Hey. Thanks for the review.

The extra description thing is something alot of people have been telling me to do so I've tried to amp it up in the later chapters (alot of the story is already written) so hopefully it'll be less of a problem in the future.

There will be alot more of what's going through their heads and what they are feeling so hopefully it'll be easier to tell Al and Scorpius apart. They are actually quite different, even though they don't seem it at the moment.

The Plot won't really pick up until after the first task is finished but after that, it'll move pretty quickly.

I hope you enjoy the later chapters and thanks again for the review. :D

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Review #31, by taylorj828The Other Evans: At First Sight

13th December 2009:
Heya! I stumbled upon this and thought it sounded interesting. Indeed - it's a terribly intriguing idea! I really like this presentation of Petunia, and I am interested in reading a not-perfect Lily. (I really don't like perfect characters, hehe.) And James - with his weird fascination/attraction/interest in/to/with Petunia? Wow, totally got me hooked with the ending.

I love that though the sisters have their problems, they still love each other. No one is perfectly good or perfectly evil, right? So there's no sense when they are written in such ways.

I also like the little details - like James' enchantment with riding in a car! And how Petunia counted him looking back at her six times! Hehe! This does sound like a wonderfully interesting summer!

Just a couple of my personal issues/concerns:

When Petunia talks about seeing James on the platform, she says it was at the end of Lily's First Year. If I understand correctly, they've completed their Seventh Year, and Petunia is seeing James again 6 years later, so it makes perfect sense as to why he looked like a child, then, but looks like a man, now. However, when Petunia, at the end of the chapter, mentions how different James looks, she says "this time last year." He would not change so much in one year, would he? Maybe it was just a small typo error? Or else I'm confused!

I do hope a bit of CC is okay... For me, what makes me want to keep reading this story is your extremely interesting plot, and your attention to detail, and the way you write the characters in a more realistic light. The only thing that makes me unsure about continuing is the way in which First Person narrative tends to push authors into revealing too much of the character's inner thoughts. Petunia tells us a lot about her feelings of jealousy for her sister, or her fears of her boyfriend becoming old and fat (though I'm intrigued by the idea of Vernon having just been your average adored-jock, the kind all the girls go for, only to end up an old, fat, balding, angry husband, haha.)... Anyway, I don't know if it's because of the First Person POV, maybe it's more tempting, but the characters *tell* us a lot, instead of the action *showing* us. For example, when Petunia notes James looking back at her 6 times - this is perfect showing. We see the action of James' feelings/interest/fascination, but it leaves us with some question about which it is, and what his motives are, etc. However, when characters tell us about all of their feelings, then it takes away some of the mystery. I know even with 3rd Person, I still sometimes have characters dwelling on their thoughts and feelings, but it's not often that humans are 100% honest with themselves. So sometimes when characters mull over their feelings/thoughts (while waiting on the train to arrive, for example), they might only think on some, limited aspects. What would Petunia really admit to herself, about herself?

Anyway, as I said, the story is really interesting and I plan to read more, as time allows. I want you to know that you write really well, and I hope that the CC is helpful. It's the only reason I would leave any CC - because I think you're a good writer and an excellent storyteller, and I think you have even greater in you. (o:

Author's Response: Hey! Im glad you read this!

Oh my goodness! I cant believe I never noticed that error and no one has pointed it out before now! *self-reprimand*

I bit of CC is perfectly fine! I do actually really enjoy CC, its far superior to "ZOMG I LUV THIS STORIEZ!!! PLZ UPDATE S00N!!!" I agree with your comments about 1st person completely. I do try not to do that too much, but I encourage you to slap me back into place if it ends up being like that :]

Wow you are so sweet! Thank you so much for that last compliment! I cant even really form sufficiant words to express my feelings, so Im not even going to try :]

Thanks so much ! < 3

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Review #32, by taylorj828Marauderesque: Marauderesque

28th November 2009:
I hope you don't mind, but I decided to read this for fun, and so I don't have a really long critique to offer. I just thought it might be better to leave you a note, though, even if it's short, since I did read this. (o: It's very cute. I like the clever trick that James played on all the girls. It would definitely NOT be cute to them, but I can understand why Harry laughs. I certainly did!

I really liked Neville's letter, too. First, I like seeing that he's the Head of Gryffindor House now - it just seems to fit perfectly. I loved his role in HPDH, and I think it really set him up to grow into quite a wizard, and definitely full of honor and courage and loyalty. The amiable letters to Harry reporting on his son are really fond things to think on. (o:

And Harry's memories back through Fred and George's pranks and jokes - lovely nostalgia, and definitely shows clearly what Harry says in the last line - the apple not falling far from the tree. I bet George loves James. (o:

I also like how you ended the story with the title word. Nice!

This was a fun, light read. It felt a tad short, but yet the plot/idea was "complete." Maybe a bit more detail on Harry's memories or this life he has, his children. I don't know, I just know I could have read more. But that's a good thing. (o:

Author's Response: Why hello! Thanks for takign the time to R&R this! :]

Yes, if I was one of those girls, after I got done crying my eyes out, I would go hunt down that James Potter lol. But Im glad it made you laugh!

And yes, about Neville. We do know he's Herbology prof, so why not Gryffindor Head? He really did grow a lot, starting at OotP, just like you said. And I pictured Neville laughing when he was writing that letter, but still trying to come off as the responsible Head of House :]

I know the memories go awfully quick...I was actually thinking about adding in some memories Harry had of past things James had done, but then I'd have to work it in with the toilet seat theme (lol). I'm glad you could have read more! That means it wasnt boring, yay!

Thanks again!

PS, sorry for the long winded response oi. (but then again, I kinda like it when authors leave long responses to my reviews, so) :]

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Review #33, by taylorj828The Nargle in the Mistletoe: The Nargle in the Mistletoe

3rd November 2009:
Aw, that was very sweet. Well done! (o: I like how you explained the background, with Ginny not actually liking boys but going with it because that was what was always expected of her. Your Luna is really wonderful, too. For a moment, when she was speaking with Draco, part of me was dying to see it turn to a Luna/Draco story, hahaha! But I knew it would be slash (I found this from the Slash-Challenge-Thread in the forums). Anyway, I think it was funny that Snape found them, but better yet that he wasn't going to tell or stop them. Haha!

Great job on the challenge! I think it went really well, and your Luna is very canon. (o:

Author's Response: Thank you so much for your review!
I'm glad you liked the story! It was quite a difficult pairin to write! Ahh yes the old Draco/Luna pairing, if Luna wasn't so difficult to write I would probable give it a go, but writing her in this was enough to almost make my mind have a blow out! :S I'm glad you think she's to canon, I was really worried about that because she is such a great character!
Thanks again for your awesome review!
Keep safe,

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Review #34, by taylorj828Through The Looking Glass: Always and Forever

2nd November 2009:
Hi there! So glad I stumbled across this tonight. I LOVE when a Harry/Draco writer revisits history and "rewrites" it for us, so to speak. It's usually just a matter of giving a different perspective, not really re-writing, right? I was immediately intrigued that you intended to take us through the 7 years between these boys. I love these kinds of tales!

I hope you don't mind, but I made a few notes while I read:

I love the part where Draco's only 12, and yet it's then, so early on, that he develops this kink for Potter. For Parseltongue. It's lovely. (o:

When he's 13, I love that you mention the thrill, and the raw emotion Draco sees in Harry's eyes. Yay for important details!

And also, that he wanted to understand Harry's fears. I found that very interesting. I could definitely see that with Draco, even if he would never admit to wanting to know for any other reason than to torment Potter. Yet the way you describe Draco growing up with tales of the Boy Who Lived - it seems logical that Draco would be so intrigued, confused, and angry about Potter... and yet would still want to know, even if in some macabre or morbid fashion, what fears Harry had, what things the Dementors brought to his mind...

She had black hair; that was a start. And, if you squinted in poor lighting, her blue eyes could resemble green.

I loved these lines. (o: Hee!

I liked hearing all that Harry heard when the Dementors drew close to him - all the details of childhood and such, and I love any scenes in H/D stories where Draco finds out that Harry's life wasn't so nice before Hogwarts (or after/during/etc!). But the emotion in this scene that Harry let so easily be shown before Malfoy seemed a bit...unnatural. I like emotion, but it's hard with these two, getting them there, you know? I'm not sure at these ages and in these circumstances if I can see it. Nevertheless, I like how later it tied into how they treated each other...

Oh, I love their dialogue where Draco talks about liking black and liking green. Hee! It's sweet. And subtle. Nicely done!

This story has lots of nice quotes, too - like the one about desire and anger...? I've always though Harry and Draco were such a good illustration of the passion that lies in anger (and which could easily turn into something else!)

Oh, the scene with Harry slamming Malfoy against the wall...? Eeee! Oh, hearts. Because I LOVE those kinds of tense, passionate displays!

Also, I liked Draco's pride over helping Harry escape the manor. That was very fitting and in character, a subtle display of Draco's emotions and feelings, there. And I especially loved, in that scene, where you had Draco mentally revisit the ideas of Harry the legend, the idol, from childhood. Perfectly sweet, endearing, and in-character. Good work to bring that up again at such a moment when their lives are both on the lines, fighting for something that, before that point, had just been their parents fight (well, sort of; at least to Draco's POV).

I love Draco's like about "nothing I do could ever redeem me." I can definitely see how he would feel/think this way. Poor lad. I like how he became a more dynamic character in the later books. (o:

Oh, and I definitely like how Harry gets his kiss in the midst of the action of the final battle and etc., just like Ron and Hermione got to have theirs. Yay for Harry and Draco. (So much more fitting than Harry and...Ginny. Sorry, I couldn't write this review without saying it...)

I tell you, I just really love Draco's kink, when Harry speaks Parseltongue to him. It's such hot torment, right? Hee. *blush* But a wonderful scene. Thanks so much for writing this story. I'm so glad I found it. You're a great writer, and you've told a good story!

Author's Response: First: So, so so sorry I'm ridiculously late with this response! *is a bad, bad person who does not deserve reviews this wonderful*

I'm so happy you enjoyed this! When I first read this I was just sitting here grinning like an idiot, really. (And was left a bit too incoherent to leave a proper reply, too...)

I def. agree with you on the whole "rewriting history" thing - I love stories like that as well, and I truly enjoyed writing this one. It was a bit challenging, but I'm happy I managed to finish

I'm glad you enjoyed the parsletongue kink. Tehe. I always thought that, if Draco has a kink, that would probably be it, notorious little Slytherin as he is.

I agree with everything you said about the GoF scenes - it's a bit hurried perhaps, and I'm thinking about rewriting it. Also, glad you picked up on those subtle hints!

"Oh, the scene with Harry slamming Malfoy against the wall...? Eeee! Oh, hearts. Because I LOVE those kinds of tense, passionate displays!"

*squee* I love scenes like that too, and I don't think I could ever write a D/H fic without having at least ONE scene like that in it, haha.

Thank you so much for the comments on the DH parts! I'm so happy you liked Draco's moment after he helped Harry - I was actually uncertain if I should keep that part or not, but I guess I made the right choice ^.~

And yes, MUCH more fitting than Harry/Ginny... Ugh. Feel free to bash that ship whenever you're reviewing my stuff, hon. Heh.

Again, thank you so, SO much for taking the time to read and review this. I'm such an awful person for not responding sooner =( *is ashamed, but glomps anyway*

Also: I saw your msg about offering to beta. It would be brilliant. I'll send you a PM, because I feel that I'm getting slightly off topic here now...

Lots of love,

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Review #35, by taylorj828Rule Breaker: Quidditch

2nd November 2009:
Hehe, this was very cute and entertaining. (o: I'm intrigued by where you'll take them next. A few typos with punctuation and grammar, but the story is interesting. Good luck with the writing! (o:

Author's Response: Oh, is there?? Darn, I'll go back and re-read it :) but thanks for telling me that there are mistakes.

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Review #36, by taylorj828Ashes: Ashes

24th September 2009:
Hi there! It's wisty with your review from eHPF. (o: This was a lovely little piece, short but emotional, just enough to capture meaning and yet also leave the reading still wanting, wondering, thinking.

From the beginning, I really felt a tone of remembrance, something somber, but yet this air of light aloofness, if that makes any sense. The dream part in the beginning, the rushing to the found - it was perfect. It has a Luna-feel, a mixture of dream and yet her own kookiness that makes you wonder what's real and what's not.

When I realized she actually woke up by the lake, I was startled. She was night walking, right? Er, walking in her sleep? Then I remembered that she mentioned that somewhere, right? Wearing her shoes to bed? Was it book 6? Or was it just in a movie somewhere?

Luna felt the music in her; it sang of grief not for the dead, but for those left behind.

Gorgeous. Perfectly Fawkes, perfectly Dumbledore, and perfectly Luna. Additionally, because we know what eventually happened as the battle came to Hogwarts, excellent 'foreshadowing.' Love it.

One small thing I'm unsure of, myself: Luna's voice in her 'dialogue' with Dumbledore. For me, I'm not sure it really sounds like her. It sounds very nice, something touching. But ...somehow missing her flare. Does that make any sense? But this might just be me, as I said, I'm particular about Luna. So if it doesn't help you, just toss it out.

Luna saw herself in the lake. Her nightgown was torn, rent down the front and covered in mud. Her face was covered in ashes and her eyes were red-rimmed from tears. She shivered.

I love the imagery, here. Also, were the torn clothes and ashes on the face an intentional thing? As I understand it, that was an ancient custom when someone became outrageously angry or aggrieved. They would tear their clothes, and put ash on their face. Is this what you were creating? It's lovely, if so, but wonderful even if it was accident. What I wonder...where did the ashes come from? Could there have been some burst of flame there? Or are we to understand it to have arrived the same was as the coloured feather?

“I came to say goodbye to Professor Dumbledore. I wanted him to know that he’ll be missed.” She met Professor McGonagall’s gaze and held it until tears started to brim in both of their eyes.

This, here, I love Luna's straightforwardness about her purpose being there despite the 'ill logic' regarding the fact of Dumbdledore being dead and unable to hear goodbyes. In this case, I definitely think the voice rings true to Luna. Very fitting.

Professor McGonagall shook her head. “It was just a dream, dear.”
“That doesn’t mean it wasn’t real, Professor.”
She knelt and picked up a brightly coloured feather from the ground.

Lovely! Totally adore it! These lines are brilliant - so Dumbledore, obviously, but so Luna, in my opinion too. A perfect ending to this piece, I think. (o: It was a pleasure to read and I hope my feedback could help in some way. Remember I am only one person so my opinions are only my own. Take what helps you and throw out what doesn't. (o: Excellent work!

Author's Response: First of all, I want to say that I think you're right about Luna's piece of dialogue to DD. I think I should make it more wistful and etheric; right now it's something that Harry would say more. Thanks for pointing that out.

Was she night-walking or did she fly there with Fawkes? That's the conundrum I want the reader to have. The ash is meant to either come from Fawkes burning or from Luna finding it somewhere as she sleep-walks; it's up to the reader to decide. I know the HBP movie she says that she sleep-walks, but I'm not sure if it's in the books (this was written before I saw the movie).

Yes, the ashes and ripped clothing was intentional. It's traditional for mourning.

Your feedback and review are very welcome. CC helps us grow.

I'm glad that I seem to have gotten the dream imagery right and it's not too heavy-handed.

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Review #37, by taylorj828A Good Day: -Part B-

12th September 2009:
Okay, part 2! This was a nice continuation. I wonder if you intended it to be two parts, originally? And if so, why you decided to break it up? If not, why you decided to continue? I'm curious. (o: I like picking authors' brains! Hehe.

When Elphias asked after Aberforth though, Albus gave an uncharacteristic excuse, saying that his brother was much entangled with other business and that he’d not spoken to him in some time.

Nice. This sounds perfect for what Albus would say, given the situation, and his voice/tone. It sounds like it comes from the books, it's so cannon, in my opinion!

who just happen to be good friend’s

Plural: good friends

Elphias was in many ways, as unremarkable as white rice.

Haha! I love this line! (o:

Nor would they quickly forget the boy in Albus’s constant shadow. And Elphias was content with that, because he loved that shadow. Loved the man who caste the shadow.

Aww, oh dear! I love this. It says SO much, and says it in a different way, you know? But Elphias certainly adored Albus. Oh, and I believe 'caste' should be 'cast.' They have very different meanings. (o:

seven years of close quarter’s

Plural: close quarters. There are many instances of this, so please do watch your plurals/possessives. I don't think I marked them all down.

Love him for befriending a boy with dragon pock’s and loved him for his dear bookish ways. Loved Albus for never having openly acknowledged that love and loved him all the more for never having mocked it.

I think it should be: Loved* him for...with dragon pox* and loved... Aside from that, I love how Elphias appreciates the positive and negative aspects. And the last line? Beautiful. Just so, really, gorgeous. It's emotional and heavy, and tells us a lot about both characters. Maybe my favorite line/theme in the story. (o:

“Elphias,” Dumbledore began but Elphias shook his head and stood up shakily.

Just a thought - you use 'shook' and 'shakily' in the same line. It usually flows better not to repeat a word too close together. Maybe tremulously or something else? *shrug*

He felt a guilty flush, for having been away when Albus’s mother and sister died.

I like this line. It says a lot without saying it, mainly because we readers know what was really happening with the Dumbledores and understand more than Elphias does at this point. Or at least I think we do... Anyway, it just says so much more that what's actually there.

You don’t know what its like,

Should be: what it's like...

“I wanted it to be you though,” Elphias added suddenly. “I’ve always only ever wanted it to be you.”

Oh dear. My heart...! This boy. So brave to just blurt that out, too. I liked this part a lot.

He didn’t know why he’d never seen it before. Probably because he hadn’t wanted to and the sudden insight of knowledge hit Elphias low in the gut and high in the head.
Albus was in love with some one else, perhaps had been for a long time, even before Elphias had left for his Grand Tour. Elphias couldn’t guess as to who and was sure, he thought as he stepped back and the front door closed, that he never wanted to know.

Oh dear, again! This section was spectacular! Totally awesome. Heavy, meaningful, emotional. Cutting. And I like the very last tagline, so raw and intense, juxtaposed with all that love and softness. Really excellent job with this. (o:

...down the front walk and very gently open, and then closed, the front gate behind him. He paused a moment in the middle of the lane to pull out a cigarette and light it with the tip of his wand.

Should be: ...and very gently opened*, and then closed... Also, I like the detail of his wand lighting the cigarette. I've never seen that in fanfic before! (o:

He did not spare a backward glance for the cottage and so he did not see the front curtain part, or a pair of bright blue eyes, now all the more clear for their unshed tears, following Elphias as he walked down the way.

I'm so curious about this part. What do you believe Albus is feeling and thinking here? I confess I'm unsure. Is he thinking on how big Elphias's love for him is, and maybe at this moment Albus feels a lot of unlove toward himself? Feels unlovable and unworthy? Or does it involve his own feelings for Elphias? I'm curious what you, the author, think (or know). (o:

Anyway, nice work! I hope something I said helped. Remember that I am just one person, so please do take what is helpful, and throw out the rest. (o:

Author's Response: Hi, again. So to answer your questions...

First, I never met the story to be broken into two parts. Originaly it was a one-shot that I wanted to come in under about three-thousand words. But, the further I got into the story, it became very clear that there was just too much to do in one readable short, and for the sake of my readers (and plot tension, as it turned out) I split the story in two. Still, the divide seems to work and none of my readers have complained yet. *fingers crossed*

As for the second question, what's on Albus' mind. Honestly, I don't know... I remember writing the ending without the bit where Albus peers out the window. I saved the story, closed it out and walked away. Unfortunately I was plagued by this image of Albus parting the curtain with his hand, and watching as his old friend walked away. The image wouldn't leave me alone, and after about a day I went back and ajusted the ending, even though I didn't really understand the emotions behind the scene; was Albus regretful, relieved, sad or maybe even angry? The problem I kept encountering with the whole write was that Albus as a character was very remote, I couldn 't get a clear bead on his thoughts, which was great because since I was writing from Elphias' POV, he didn't know either, but as the author it kept me confused, and still does. Why Albus watched Elphias go I may never know...

Thanks again for another great review. Huggles.


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Review #38, by taylorj828A Good Day: -Part A-

12th September 2009:
Hi, sorry for the delay again. But I'm here with your review. I'm very intrigued by the Albus/Elphias pairing. Honestly, I'd be interested to read any well written slash about Dumbledore. I don't mean sexyslashy stuff, just, you know, to see that side of Dumbledore exposed a bit more - his affection for some of the friends he once had, perhaps. And whether he muted that part of his life as he aged, or if he had anyone special, behind the scenes. Ah, but I'm rambling. I just like well told stories!

And this is interesting and intriguing. I like your vocabulary. There were some typos and things, though. So the next part will go sequentially through the text, what stood out to me.

First, I like the intro; it really draws the reader in. I liked the part about gathering truth from the wooden gate. Just watch your commas though. Sometimes I think you don't need the ones you have, other times you need them where you don't have them... if it to were shocked at the state of things and hoped to gild the broken titles and crooked window shudders, the cracking facade and overgrown front yard into some former semblance of charm.

I think it should be, "as if it too* were..." And titles of what? Or do you mean tiles? And what about a comma after yard? Just sounded a bit off to my ears, that's all.

"Now he gave the front door a pert knock when he reached it..."

And also, this might just be me, but 'now' always sounds funny to me, when used in a past tense story. And I don't think it changes any of the meaning, or flow, or rhythm, to remove it. But of course that might just be a preference thing. (o:

"the air laden with a rain soaked sun."

A very concise but full description. I like it. (o:

...of sunny day’s spent walking by the lake...

Should be plural: sunny days... (no ownership)

of hours in chilled classroom’s

Again, plural: classrooms. (no ownership)

an familiar greeting and

Should be 'a familiar...' rather than 'an.' (o:

Oh, yes, the part where the two men hug? I found myself wondering for the first time, very curiously I might add, how Albus Dumbledore might hug. Especially as a younger fellow. Is it warm and full and enveloping? Or brief and distant? Or a sideways hug full of uncertainty? It wasn't necessarily something I thought needed to be added or anything. I just remember thinking, "I wonder...!" And your words started me on that train of thought. (o:

...gripping Elphias shoulder

Elphias needs ownership here. It should be either: Elphias's shoulder OR Elphias' shoulder. (As far as I can tell, both versions are accepted variants, but it should be consistent within the story, when used.)

Your travel’s have done you well

Plural, no ownership: Your travels* have done you well...

from the India border

Just wondering if this should maybe be 'the Indian border' or 'the border of India.' Unless, back in their day, this was the common way to say it...? Just curious...

how the old place carry’s on

It should be: the old place carries* on...

I don’t stay here but on the weekend’s.

Plural, no ownership: on the weekends.

“Seem’s like they were

Should be: "Seems like they were..."

Oh, also, I noticed when you use names, you're lacking commas. When you point out someone, like: "My dear friend, Albus!" or "My neighbor, John, doesn't have a car," you should use a comma before and after the name, or if there is a final punctuation mark at the end (! ? or .) then just use a comma before the name... Maybe I'm telling you something you already know though. Er, sorry. *hides*

pooled between the two friend then

I think it should be: pooled between the two friends* then...

Elphias might come to know himself completely, pure without his secrecy and their friendship that were the drug to which Elphias had been so long addicted.

I really liked this part. I think it tells us a lot about Elphias, and his feelings or his struggle. Poor fella. Anyway, it's a lovely line, I really like it! (o:

Alrighty, that's the review for this part. Because the parts are fairly short, I think I might be able to go ahead and do the next one, too, while I'm here. (o: We'll see...! Please let me know if my reviews are ever too much, or if you would prefer for me to focus on some other aspects.

Author's Response: Hello again dear taylorj! What an amazing pair of reviews! I think you missed your calling as a beta, I mean really. You're always so on point and you catch all my little mistakes, it's amazing. Stuff I've looked at twice times over becomes clear and obvious when another pair of eyes look's at it, and I'm super excited to have your eyes all over this story.

Seeing everything you have to say here convinces me that I really need to take this piece down and do some serious clean-up on it. It's been a while since I've gone over it, and having a fresh perspective will be nice. Plus, all your specific examples and exerts make the job of clean-up ever so much easier;)

I want to thank you for your time and effort, I am sincerely grateful. Now, onto the next review...


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Review #39, by taylorj828Moonlit Silhouettes: Moonlit Silhouettes

7th September 2009:
That was lovely. (o: The first paragraph was very poetic. I got lost in your imagery. (o: And the line immediately after - so contrary. It's excellent juxtaposition!

This is a real piece of prose here. I enjoy how you explore Dean's feelings, and the detail you've put into this small clip, this tender scene, when friendship turns into something else. It's really gorgeous, and reads unlike fanfic. It reads like literature. (o: The vocabulary and phrasing are really wonderful, unique, specific, and conjuring mental images...

And exactly 500 words? That's incredible! (o:

Author's Response: :) Haha. Yes. The juxtaposition! I wanted the reader to feel as if only the feeling of love is beautiful! I hope it worked! And I've been getting a lot of compliments saying it has a poetic feel, but you've gone further and said that it reads unline a fanfic and more alike literature. That's awesome.

I'm very happy you enjoyed how I explored his feelings and how I developed this one very particular scene. I'm glad also that you loved the way I phrased things ~ some find it somewhat alluring.

I loved that challenge a lot; I felt it really tested me! I hope this was enough for you to return to read more of my stories!

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Review #40, by taylorj828A Thousand Tomorrows: Part 1

5th September 2009:
Hi there! This is taylorj828 here with your review. (o: This is a very interesting story you've got going. I like your well thought-out plot, and the background you've filled in, though I would be careful about putting so much in the first chapter, in that it could feel rather heavy on information instead of action. I'm not saying it is that way, just to be careful of that, for future reference. You can slowly reveal some of the information as you go along, if it would work for your style.

I like the idea of Harry being bitter toward the Wizarding world, and I love how he is acting - darker, more threatening, the criminal. It's intriguing. Harry is where I would expect Draco to be, and Draco where I would expect to find Harry. I also wonder about Ron's part in all this. Very intrigued!

All in all, it's good work for the plot, idea, and storytelling. It sounds live you've got a great start on a novel here, definitely leaves the reader curious for what happens next. (o:

Just two small comments about detailed grammar issues - there are a couple of cases where you were missing apostrophes and 's' for showing ownership. I believe one was with "The boy who lived" and another with "Dawlish." Those these are awkward, you should technically have the 's for ownership. Another thing is commas around names. Technically, in a sentence like, "his roommate Blaise always told him..." you should have a comma before and after 'Blaise' like this: "his roommate, Blase, always told him."

Anyway, great first chapter! Keep going with this, it's very interesting! Oh, yeah, and I love the Einstein quote! (o:

Author's Response: Hello m'dear!

Wow, what an amazing review. It's so insightful.

I'm really glad you liked this - I was totally unsure in the beginning what people would think of this; and one of my biggest concerns was if people would understand or not, another one was the characterizations.

I think this is why the first chapter is quite "heavy" - it's very much AU and that sort of thing always demands a very detailed backstory and characterization to work.

Furthermore, thank you so much for pointing out those grammar mistakes! I'm swedish you see; english is not my first language and sometimes I just go blind and can't correct my own stuff.

Anyway, I'm so, so happy you liked it, and again, thank you so much for leaving me a review!


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Review #41, by taylorj828The Collection: Cider Conversation

5th September 2009:
Oh dear, I have to confess that I love this!! (o: Sorry, had to get that out there before my usual, "hey, this is taylorj828, here for your review, etc." Heh. So I usually so mark down anything that sticks out and mention it all sequentially, which is what I'll do, then leave my parting comments, overall, at the end. (o:

Firstly, I love your imagery and description. From the very first paragraph you really painted wonderful pictures, and told amazing details about the space and the people just be showing, rather than telling things. It was beautiful - all the details about the way people walked, or the smell in the air. I adored it!

His gaze never does linger as long as I’d like but I smile friendly just the same.

I liked this line, as I thought it showed a lot about Jack (and also Remus) without going to heavy introspection. It's just a quick line describing action, or lack of action, that also tells us about their emotions. Wonderful! Also, I just especially like the wording/phrasing of the first half of it. It's just different and prose-like. Much love! (Have I warned you that I adore language and words??)

And I especially love the love speech patterns and peculiar phrases and words you've used as Jack is speaking and narrating. It's so rare that someone thinks deeply about these things when writing hpff, and I think it worked especially well with your First Person POV. I normally avoid First Person, but I think you played it wonderfully to your strengths here, and capturing Jack's voice the way you did, I don't think the story would convey as much if it weren't in First Person. Anyway, I just love the way Jack speaks, his phrases and his bad grammar, and his dialect. It's lovely. (o:

Something’s in this world just don’t make a krunt of sense but I makes do any how. Once the liquids near a simmer I pour if off into a heavy glass...

Just a couple small errors. I believe it should be: "Some *things* in this world just don't... Once the liquid's* near a simmer, I pour it* off into a heavy glass..."

I know Jack speaks in his own unique ways, but these things seem more like punctuation/typo issues, and I doubt Jack thinks in punctuation. (o:

The old place seems empty without her usual’s.

Also, I believe it should be: "without her usuals*." There is no ownership, I think it's just meant to be plural, right?

I like the part where Remus refers to Jack as a child, and this sticks to Jack, and he reacts to it, feeling contrary. It's so realistic, and works well to show characteristics of each character. (o:

“You are right,” he agrees, body and face all suddenly animated. “Things do change. Harry… He is so like him, I couldn’t help but see Prongs. I’ve felt so guilty for it, you understand?”

I don’t understand but I nod anyway, scared to death that he won’t say more. I don’t know what use it will be to me, our strange crumbly conversation, but at least he’s saying something.

I had to quote this, because I especially loved this, too! I love the dialogue, how Remus just rambles on, and how Jack, not understanding any of it, just wants him to keep speaking. It's beautiful, and I just want to squish 'em both.

One thing I was thinking about though... I was reading along and assuming the narrator was a boy, since it was a slash story request, but I wasn't sure if you were very going to confirm this, and part of me was, for a time, wishing you would have put it in earlier in the story somewhere, or thinking you might never mention his name/gender, and leave it open-ended. However, when I reached the end, where Remus calls Jack's name, I found that it was fitting, and had to "eat" my own thoughts. I actually think it's clever (and sneaky?) because I can imagine all kinds of people reading this, thinking this dear 'girl' is crushing on Remus so, and Surprise! It's our dear boy, Jack, instead! I don't know if you wanted it that way, but I like it. I love that Remus knows his name, too. And I think you did excellently, writing Jack as a boy, but keeping it a bit ambiguous, for a reader who might begin to read, thinking it's a girl, and getting a surprise later. Well, just me rambling about this, anywho. (o:

And lastly, I have to confess my huge Jack love. (o: I am not a fan of OCs, generally, and I normally don't read about Marauders either, but what I am "walking away" from this story feeling is an intense love for Jack. I would read more stories about him, because you've got such a wonderful handle on him, and he is so intriguing, so honest and sweet, and yet flavored with his different speech, and his crush on the older man, and just everything about him makes me want to know more about Jack, and his world. I think it's a huge credit to your writing, storytelling, and character development. (o:

So, I'm glad to have been able to read this. It was truly wonderful!

Author's Response: Great gads, now this is a review! What an absolutely delicious detailed treat. Thank you so much for taking the time and investing the energy to give me such an absolutely thorough and wonderful review!

I really appreciate pointing out specific issues, that helps me so much and so few people are willing to do that. I will attend to the things you've pointed out ;)

So yes, I was purposely vague about Jack being a guy and not a girl. Most people will assume that this protag is a girl, but I wanted to prove a point: that attraction, love...all of that is not only ageless, but it is also genderless. This piece from the very start was done in the hopes of surprising people and geared towards changing their minds about slash work; I wanted to prove that a good story is a good story, and love comes in all shapes and sizes.

As for Jack himself, he appeared very suddenly in my mind, and with all the completeness I could have ever asked of a character. His desires, his voice, his fears and his faults were imediately and organically ready for me to write, and sometimes good writing just happens like that and I'm super grateful it does. I'm in love with him too, and I hope to come back with him at some later point. (We're just waiting on the right story *wink-wink*).

Thank you again for this review. It's so appreciated.


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Review #42, by taylorj828Quiet Kindness: Quiet Kindness

18th August 2009:
Oh this was so clever! I absolutely loved it! I love these kinds of stories that are about something more, something deeper. It was so imaginative and creative. I think it's brilliant. What more can I say? The concept, the idea... This average muggle man taking Harry in, and in the end giving him the strength to go on, reminding Harry of who he's saving, the whole world he's saving... The kindness, hospitality, and Harry's leaving in the morning... I just love it all! And your writing is superb! Great literature, wonderful storytelling. And I love your last line!

I'm a total fan of this story. (o:

Oh, and it matches so well with the verse quoted, too. It's like you have a moral with your story, whether you intended to or not. In a world where people are more and more isolating themselves without realizing it, it's encouraging to be reminded about hospitality and taking care of others, of strangers, or whomever happens to need it. Yep, love this story. (o:

Author's Response: Oh jeeze. What an awesome review!

When I read the quote prompt the idea for this story just came to me. I didn't spend too much time creating a moral, I just tried to capture the essense of the quote itself. I'm really glad you thought I got it so spot-on.

Thanks for taking the time to R&R!!

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Review #43, by taylorj828Secret Sins: Occlumency

17th August 2009:
Nice first chapter! Sorry it took me so long, but I kept getting distracted and had to keep coming back to it! I'm very curious and intrigued - about the memory, about someone attempting to make Harry forget. I like Hermione taking care of Harry. And of course I'm eager to what happens with the blond boy Harry just stumbled upon! Great set up! Definitely draws the reader in!

Sorry this is a short review. I'll have more time for the next ones, I'm sure of it!

Author's Response: Glad you enjoyed the first chapter and that it caught your attention. Like I said this is my first slashy story so it's new territory... lol. Can't wait to see what you think of the next story!
Eagerly waiting for your next review!

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Review #44, by taylorj828He Wishes for the Cloths of Heaven: he wishes for the cloths of heaven

15th August 2009:
Hi there! Me here for your review! So typically I just mark everything that stands out, good, bad, or awkward. So it'll go in sequential order. This was a nice read. Though I'm not really a fan of the Marauders, I enjoyed reading your take on Lupin, especially, and filling in some of the gaps for Sirius. (o:

he thought he would never again experience anything as grand as that; but he did, as soon as he befriended James and Sirius and Peter. Friendship: nothing was grander than that, Remus would conclude many times.

So, the first 'that' sticks out to me, but I thought it wasn't so bad. But with two 'that's, it might be better to drop one, for flow's sake. But only if you like, of course. I think you could cut 'as that' and simply say, "he thought he would never again experience anything quite so grand; but he did." Maybe? Maybe it's just me... I'm too picky about little details, so if it doesn't help you, just toss it out. Seriously.

And in any case, when he was in the presence of James and Sirius, he didn’t occupy much space – just like lumpy Peter Pettigrew.

Lovely line. I like your description of Lupin. It's a creative way to speak about him - taking up (or not taking up) much space. But it makes me just want to hug him!

-exalted (James' reaction to sorting)

The dictionary does say you can use this word like 'elated' but it's more obsolete that way. More commonly we think of being praised or honored. So your readers might think that, first. But I know myself, I sometimes like using the older variants, so whatever makes you happy. (o:

And Remus (who had yet to recover from the prospect of having been welcomed to Hogwarts at all) hadn’t said much at all either. He didn’t occupy much space at all.

You have 3 'at all's. That's a lot of them! Is there one you maybe don't need? Or are you doing it for effect?

they walked over after a silent agreement.

This makes me wonder - an agreement to what? *shrug* I understand from context, of course. Just, you know, that questions hangs there, bugging me. (I'm strange, I know. You can disregard anything unhelpful, as I said before!)

I like that Lupin can draw. (o: Just a little detail that makes me smile!

Sure, there had been hints (or maybe illusions), but a tension had nonetheless existed between the two boys, and Remus was as confused as ever, raging teenage hormones becoming slightly overwhelming.

Oh, I want to see these hints and illusions! I love the journey! The glances and touches and brushes. Hehe.

But Lupin's disappointment after Sirius' prank... It speaks volumes, poor fella.

“You weren’t thinking, Sirius. You never are, but this time things went too far. I don’t want to be that final touch to a prank that endangers lives. This is me. This is your friend, the werewolf, who could have killed someone without even realising it.”

I like their confrontation! There's nothing like a good "fight." Hee!

And I like the romance we see afterward, on the Tower, but it does move a bit quickly. Have you thought about slowing it down a bit? Describing it a bit more, not in graphic-ness, but in the details, drawing it out, since we are taking this journey to get there? Pausing to appreciate the touches or gazes or held-breathe? Just an idea.

The next thing he knew, he was learning of their deaths – James’s, Lily’s, and Peter’s (whom he hadn’t seen in so long) – and of how Sirius had betrayed them.
And he wept, and he sobbed, and he screamed, alone in his flat, broken, so broken, and so lost.
He was lost without them.

I like these lines a lot. They carry a lot of weight and emotion. Just great!

Will I ever be free? he thinks, and doubts it.
He will never be free. Not today, not tomorrow, not ever.
He has too many ghosts haunting him.

Again, I like these lines, too.

“I wish I could go back,” Sirius says out of the blue, and truth be told he’s not sure what he’s referring to. Luckily, Remus doesn’t ask him. He doesn’t have to.

Mmmm, AWESOME. Love the subtext. (o:

They say goodnight and they go to sleep.
They say goodbye and they say hello.
The days go by and the weeks go by.
And one day they can’t resist it, and they kiss; and as odd as it feels after all these years – as odd and as right – they cherish every moment of it. They fall asleep beside each other, exhausted but content – but when they wake up the next morning, they say nothing.
Just goodbye and see you later.

Love this, how it's so understated, how they're avoiding it, too. It's nice, the way you write it.

And I like how you explain Lupin's feelings with Tonks, and then the battle, the green light, and waking up to Sirius. It's all lovely.

My main encouragement is to take a little more time on the scenes where you want the most emotion and emphasis. Help us feel it more closely within ourselves, by making full use of the small details. Otherwise, it was really nice. I'm glad to have read it. (o: I hope my review helps in some way, but remember to take what helps you and throw out the rest. I'm just one person. (o:

Author's Response: Wow. First off, thank you so much for taking your time and being so thorough! I fixed those first few awkward sentences - losing the 'that' and the 'at all's' (can't believe I didn't notice those!), but I wasn't entirely sure how to explain or elaborate the silent agreement thing, so I let it be for the time being *blush*. As for the word exalted, I changed it as well, just to be on the safe side. So thanks for pointing those out, I really appreciate it.

As for my biggest problem with this - the romance - I knew I'd moved a bit too quickly, but I was still unable to expand it, especially at the beginning. I guess it's the fact that I moved from their first year directly to their sixth year, though I was considering adding something in between when writing this, but I never did, in the end. If I do add another part there, then maybe I can show more of the hints and such that I mentioned. And I'll definitely try to explain their feelings more, especially in that scene. I'm very glad you liked that I explained Remus's feelings about Tonks; I didn't want to exclude their relationship, thinking that the entire story would be a bit more canon with it.

This review did help me a lot and I'll go through certain parts to expand their feelings a bit and elaborate in general. Again, thank you so much for this incredible review.

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Review #45, by taylorj828All Inclusive: All Inclusive

14th August 2009:
Hi there! I stumbled upon this story because I was interested in the Amsterdam setting, having been there recently myself. And also because of the uncommon pairing. (o: I liked the little bits of Dutchy things that came out in the story, though admittedly I would have liked to have seen more. I'm not sure what area is De Wallen, but I know I saw several Kerk's, not sure if one of the ones I saw was the Oude Kerke you're referencing...

I like the job you've created for Padma and the way you've developed her with her own story line, so different from her sister.

Ron's admission about Hermione leaving him was very quick and sudden. I would have loved more background, but I understand you probably were eager to get the All Inclusive out there, and see where it led Ron, and of course, Padma. I really enjoyed the portrayal as the two of them simply losing themselves to the moment, though for different reasons.

This was a creative idea. (o: I'm glad I had the chance to read it.

Author's Response: Thanks for reviewing :)

De Wallen is actually Red Light District but as far as I know the Dutch don't really refer to it as the Red Light District so I've made Padma use De Wallen because she grew accustomed to Dutch culture and behaviour ;D.

Oude Kerk is the oldest church in Amsterdam (also written in Dutch but you've probably been introduced to it in English or some other language - I'm not sure if you're English or...hehe xD ).

I know that Ron telling Padma that Hermione left him seemed a bit sudden and quick but the two of them aren't really the best of friends so I doubt that he would tell her the whole story (and Padma interjected with her offer of All Inclusive).

I'm glad you liked the story and thanks once again for taking the time to review :)

~ Krsitina

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Review #46, by taylorj828The Game: The Game

10th August 2009:
Ha! This was excellent! *totally grinning*

It's so hard to find food H/D fic here! This was fantastic, and I have to say I'm sorry for not having copied out all the parts and lines I really liked, but I was so excited about reading that I didn't want to pause!

I love how you gave us all these answers in the end - answers to questions we didn't know we had, like about who recommended the bar, and Harry's partner, and Draco not knowing how to tell Harry about being gay. It was all so lovely!

And the shots? Oh my word. I felt sympathy pains! I loved the body-shot scene though. You wrote that really well! Very seductive.

Both guys were definitely in character. I just really enjoyed it. (o: I'm a fan!


There were a few instances where you switched to another tense, like present tense. I only remember it two or three times, but just be careful. It always flows best if it's all in one tense, which this mostly was. (o:

And the POV - you switched often between Draco and Harry's POV. But have you considered writing only from one character's POV? If not, I'd love to submit that challenge to you. (o: I wrote my POVs more like this, in my earlier fics. But my later stuff I've either kept only 1 POV, or divided it carefully (like 1 chapter, 1 POV).

If you ever want reviews or beta-ing for D/H fic, don't hesitate to ask!

Author's Response: :D Thank you very much! I'm so glad you liked it. It's so true about trying to find good H/D fics here. And what's great is that there are some amazing ones here. You just have to search them out. :)

haha I'm glad you enjoyed the body shots. That was definitely a great scene for me to write. :)

Yes, this story was actually written a while ago. Since then, I think I've grown a bit in my writing. I always knew I had a problem with my tenses. :) I've actually just finished revising this story and will put up soon. It's just so weird to read your old fics and cringe at them. lol But I still always love my plots! :)

Regarding POV, I've tried doing stories through one, but I don't know... I like looking at it both ways. I believe two of my slash fics, "Dear Harry" and "Protected," try to stay within one POV, but even that didn't go over well. haha

Anyway, thank you for your wonderful review. I will definitely keep you in mind for beta-ing. :)

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Review #47, by taylorj828Surface Tension: Who You Are

8th August 2009:
taylorj828 here for your review! This was really marvelous, and I would never know you were writing slash for the first time! Well done! So what I've done is mark everything that stood out, and it'll go in sequential order.

"What am I doing?"

This line stands out in the non-italicized section, because in the rest of the story, Cedric doesn't refer to himself as "I." It seems natural in the italicized part, because he is remembering and thinking. When writing in third person, though, the only time "I" is used is when we delve directly into their thoughts. You could change it to, "What is he doing?" and we will know Cedric is referring to himself. It's just something I noticed right away. Not a big deal, just a picky little minor detail-y thing. :oP

He would have to help prove his point.

Which point? In context we conclude that he means the straight/gay point, but the 'help' throws me off, because we haven't necessarily put together yet what he's started proving. It would be a meaningful line even without the word 'help,' but it's just one person's thoughts, mind you. (o:

Her touch is gentle but he cannot bear it.
But he must.

Two buts don't make it right. Har, har. :oP It flows better not to repeat words close together, like with 'but.' It would carry equal impact to remove the second 'But," or you could substitute it with something like, "However."

His roommates had agreed to leave him alone for the night, and now Cedric is almost regretting it.

Oh, Cedric! Poor lad! There, there!

Straddling her, he is scared to hurt her. There is no stability beneath him, no strength. He felt like he was going to hurt her. But he knows this is what she wants and what he should want.

All of your other lines are in the present tense, but 'felt' is in the past. It's best not to switch tenses. "He feels like he is going to hurt her."

So he forces himself to put his right hand up her shirt, as gently as he could while still feigning emotion, and his left hand cradled her back, arched in his grip.

Again, an issue with present/past tenses. " gently as he can, while still feigning emotion, and his left cradles her back, arched in his grip."

He puills up her shirt, wondering if she will stop him. She doesn’t; she helps him.

Typo with 'pulls.' Also, I love the last line, two short bits, creating emphasis. Great job!

he has no choice but to consume her toxic scent

Wow, that makes her sound really foul! What about telling us more about the toxic smell? Is it also flowery, sickeningly sweet, too much vanilla? Definitely keep the word toxic, it's not my complaint. Just, if you wanted, you could add another descriptor to show what's so toxic about it.

Her softness is nearly irresistible but something in him rejects it. But she does not mind; she wants him.

Two buts again. What about: 'She does not appear to mind; she wants him.' ?

“You all right?” said the voice.

No need for past tense. 'says the voice.'

“Are you okay?” she says.
You all right?
Same question, completely different circumstances. The answer is not the same. Not even close. Then, he was sure of himself. He was ready to succumb to the pressure, willing even. But now? No. He can’t do this. This is not who he is.

LOVE this! Love the two questions, back to back. Great work here!

Cedric tore himself away from her body, removed her hand from his thigh. He sat up, propping himself on his elbow. She lay below him, looking confused. He looked at her and saw the lost look in her eyes, the fear. It broke his heart to have to end it this way, but there is no other way in which he could live with himself.

But then right afterward, you switch to past tense! From this point on in the story, you sort of jump back and forth at different times, so I would watch your tenses and keep it streamlined.

Suddenly he longs to cover his bare chest.

I love this detail...! It's one of those small things that really brings a character or scene to life!

“You go ahead and take all the time you want. I’m sure it will be worth the wait,” she says, gathering her shirt and snatching it into her grip, as well as picking up her comb from the bedside table, “for someone else.”

Oh dear! I love what the girl says, totally clever of you! But I don't think it has the impact that it should because of how it's broken up with the details. I like the details, but it detracts from the impact of the last three words she says. It might just be my feeling, but I think rearranging it would bring more impact.
Like: "You go ahead and take all the time you want. I’m sure it will be worth the wait,” she says, “for someone else.” She gathers her shirt and snatches it into her grip, picking up her comb from the bedside table as well.

Just my thoughts, though. (o:

...leaving him alone in his bed with the curtains closed unnecessarily; the reason has just walked out.

Another great line! Enjoyed this!

So when you started describing Ken, I began wondering what House he was in, because for some reason I wasn't thinking Slytherin. Anyway, I love that it's a Hufflepuff and Slytherin. That's just too awesome!

The thought of telling everyone that he, the Triwizard Champion, top of his class, is homosexual, rocks him.

I think you need a comma to help the readers with this sentence. I bolded the comma where it would be helpful to have one, after homosexual.

[ be continued in PM. Sorry, but I hit the character limit and there are a couple more paragraphs. Anyway, check your PM box for the rest, please!]

Author's Response: Okay, I've decided to try and tackle this awesome review.

First of all, thank you so much. This is exactly the kind of critique I was looking for. =)

That first-person bit just sort of popped out of me. I should have edited it out because it would make more sense without it, so thank you for pointing that out.

Prove his point - I meant the point that nothing was wrong. I should have explained that better, but when I was writing this, I knew what I was talking about and I was so into it that I wasn't considering the reader. I need to edit better.

That's an interesting point you make about too many 'but's. I'll definitely have to keep that in mind. Thank you!

Oh, the tenses. Can you tell I'm not used to writing in present tense? XD Thanks for pointing those out.

I'm so glad you noticed those little lines. Those are my favorites too, and it's so good to know that my work is not overlooked. =)

Thank you so much for this critical review. I really needed it, and I appreciate it. =)

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Review #48, by taylorj828The Interfering Nature of Pain: The Boy Who Barely Lives

4th August 2009:
Oh dear, have I just stumbled onto a lovely Draco/Harry story in the making?! I'm so excited! I hope you won't mind a review from me. This was excellent writing, far better than most I see on HPFF. I'm so pleased! I do hope you're planning to post more?

...and Harry wasn’t sure he could ever forgive himself for once again being The Boy Who Lived.

Oh, I loved this line! This is exactly what I would imagine Harry to think, if the story played out this way. I think it would be unavoidable for Harry not to struggle with blame and unforgiveness. That's cannon Harry to me. Great line!

Ginny had stayed with him as long as she could, but the Harry she’d fallen in love with was not the bitter man who stood before her with nothing left to give.

I have to admit that I don't have a favorable opinion of Ginny. I may see her differently than large portions of the fandom, but for me, I experienced a Ginny who was in love with the idea of Harry, a crush on her Hero. So it's always been hard for me to accept that Ginny is Harry's happily-ever-after. It seems too much like what he is supposed to want, rather than what he, aside from teenage hormones and infatuation, actually wants. But still, I certainly see that he wouldn't be the man/boy/image Ginny fell for, originally. I liked this concept.

He gave up the world that had given him so much, only to take even more away...

Oh, another great line! This is totally how I see Harry and his relationship with the wizarding world! It gave him so much, but it took from him so much. I sometimes get bitter on his behalf for the way he was played like a pawn, but then, it begs the question - for the Greater Good, right? Such lovely themes. Adore this line!

His heart seemed to have given up all hope of ever truly beating again.

Oh, a beautiful, poetic line! Seamless imagery with a clear point. I love it!

He realized that although he had loved her for a time, he no longer felt that connection, and doubted he ever would again.

Man, this is the Harry I saw from HPDH, before I turned the page and found the Epilogue. Heh. I just mean, as lovely as Ginny is supposed to be, after everything Harry went through that year, it just seems like there would be a HUGE disconnect. Either way, this makes perfect sense for me, as you establish his break from Ginny and draw towards something/someone else. (o:

Harry Potter, The Boy Who Lived, was barely living at all.

Oh and an amazing line to end us off, as well! Just superb! This is a perfect juxtaposition and clearly shows what Harry has become, now. Poor lad. I must confess I adore the Harry character and have this fierce kind of devotion to him. (o: It's terrible and wonderful.

I am loving this story and can't wait to read more! Thanks so much for sharing it!

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Review #49, by taylorj828Lycaon and the Nymph: The War Begins

3rd August 2009:
Hi there, I thought I might return the favor. (o:

First, I've never read a Tonks/Lupin story, and don't often read about these characters or their peers. But it was nice to have a bit of a change. And to see things from another point of view.

I do have a few questions or concerns...

Dumbledore, in the OoTP meeting, mentions collecting Harry later because of the family pact which requires him to remain at Privet Drive. I was just curious, but do we have any evidence that the OoTP is aware of Dumbldedore's reasoning for sending Harry home every summer? It's quite possible, I just can't exactly remember now, or if I thought it was just one of those things the Order took on faith, to Trust Dumbledore...

And along those lines, I personally think it's very unlikely that Dumbledore mentioned to anyone his desire to collect memories about Voldemort. It didn't seem to me that any of the adults were aware of it at all. But I realize that fanfic authors can take liberties and interpret or change things. (o:

Another note - you did very well with writing mostly only in Tonk's POV. I enjoy Third Person Limited POV, myself. The only little glitch I saw was when Snape thought to himself, "if she only knew." If we're experiencing the story from Tonk's POV, we can't know what Snape is thinking. Instead, you can show it with his body language, which you actually did, simply by having Snape wince. Before I read Snape's thoughts, the wince told me enough. I knew what he was thinking.

I had to laugh at the line about Tonk successfully asking Lupin out. I don't know why it struck me as comical, but it was also very fitting for these characters. (o:

Lastly, you have a pretty nice ending, in that you leave us anticipating what will happen next - the "date."

Well, thanks for your review of mine. And good luck with this story!

Author's Response: Thank you for taking the time of reading and reviewing for me.

With Dumbledore and OoTP, I took some creative license with that myself. Sure JKR doesn't say it, but that doesn't mean it did/didn't happen. We have nothing about meetings of the Order that took place when Harry wasn't around, so I feel that gives me the right to write it myself. Also I think that Dumbledore very well told the Order at least some of what he was up to. Of course I never said "I'm looking for memories to prove he has horcruxes." or anything like that, so I will take that also into creative license.

But I hadn't thought of the Snape thing. I will have to go in and change that because you are correct. But it does make me sad to lose that little Lily/Snape moment.

Thank you again for reviewing.

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Review #50, by taylorj828Who'd Have Thought?: Who'd Have Thought?

3rd August 2009:
Hi there,

I stumbled onto this because I'm a big Harry/Draco fan. I haven't read a lot lately, but I used to avidly read it all the time - though not really at HPFF, since there isn't so much of it here (the community's loss, I assure you, as there are some truly fantastic H/D fics out there!).

Anyway, so I have to admit that I had difficulty getting into the story, only because it is written in First Person narrative. I know a lot of authors favor this, but it's terribly difficult for me to read First Person - even in books, novels, etc. It just rubs me the wrong way. But I read through all your reviews and made myself go again. And the short of it is that I did enjoy the story, despite the First Person POV.

But I do want to ask, do you normally write First Person? Would you consider writing Third Person? Many people think you can't have a limited perspective in Third Person, that it has to be omniscient, but it absolutely doesn't. You can have Third Person limited, where we only see from Harry's POV. Well, anyway, just wanted to suggest it, maybe if it's not your style, it could be a challenge for you. (o:

Moving on...

I like your line about Harry forgiving Draco in the Great Hall. Even though it's never brought up in the book, I do believe that Harry, at that point, would recognize that he'd forgiven Draco. Seeing the Malfoys, seeing what the war did to their family, seeing Draco as a victim of it all, rather than a childish instigator really would have changed Harry's perspective, I think.

We never actually spoke that night, but I think it was clear; our childhood feud was over.

I loved that line! I think it's perfectly in character for these characters and the situation. Totally cannon. (o:

I hated being the center of attention, but Ginny, well, she loved it. It’s understandable; she had always loved it when everyone’s eyes were on her.

I had to laugh at this line, because it's really how I see Ginny. I don't have the most favorable opinion of her, and it just really tickled me because I would write something like this in my own stories, so I was pleased to see it here. *giggles*

I’ve never regretted rejecting him for Ron in our first year, but I regret not having a friendlier relationship with him.

This line stuck out to me because it actually changes tenses. Your story is written almost entirely in past tense, except for the end, so there in the middle, where this line is, it actually jumps to present tense with the wording. I guess, since you use present tense later, it kind of works. Or, to keep it uniform with the past tense, you could change it to: I’d never regretted rejecting him for Ron in our first year, but I regretted not having a friendlier relationship with him.

Oh, and I love that Draco slips and says Harry's given name first, before Harry does. It's just lovely, even if I can't explain why!

And of course Hermione was the one to point it out to Harry how much he was liking Draco! It's only right, because she is Hermione and he's Harry, and that's just so perfectly in character!

Oh, and one little detail. You mention alcohol. Is it oak-cured mead, firewhiskey that burns on the way down, etc? In the HP books, alcohol is always referred to by its type, or name, rather than generally alcohol. So if you called it by its proper name, instead of the general term, it would sound more like the the voice from the books. Just a tiny, minuscule detail, though.

Anywho, this was a pleasure to read. I'm glad I stumbled onto it. If you ever write Harry/Draco again, I would happily volunteer to beta or review it for you. (o:

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