Reading Reviews for Simple Twist of Fate
  
6 Reviews Found

Review #1, by Alopex and by a simple twist of fate, he knew love.

30th October 2009:
Happy HPFFSAD!

I have to admit I'm a bit at a loss for words here. I'm not sure what to say. Not to worry, though, I'm good at rambling. I liked this story very much. When I'm reading paper books, I have this awful habit of reading ahead, which sometimes spoils the story for me. I rarely have that urge when reading online because I read differently on the computer. It's more difficult to find my place again, it involves scrolling and clicking, I tend to read more quickly anyway (if I'm filling a review request for a story that bores me, especially).

While I was reading this story, I DID want to skip ahead - very much so. However, I resisted the urge. I found myself so caught up in the story. Reading it was like floating down a calm river or something similar. The current was strong enough to catch me and move me along, but not so violent as to confuse me, dunk me under the water, and scatter me in several directions. (In other words, the flow of this story was fabulous.)

In your author's note, you mention the POV switch at the beginning. I am not a fan of the second person at all, and I was definitely wondering where that italicized part at the beginning came in. At first, I was assuming that it came before the rest of the story, chronologically, but as I read more about his interaction with her, I realized that the beginning actually came in the middle. My realization was confirmed when you repeated the first passage, only in the third person. When I came to it, I thought, wait a moment, I've read this part before! So I scrolled to the top to compare.

Honestly, I do think the POV switch is a little weird. You say there is no particular reason for having done it, and I do think the story would be perfectly alright without it. However, having it there does create this interesting (oh, I don't know how to say it!) split with time. That doesn't make sense. Gah. What I'm trying to say is, it puts that piece of the story out-of-order, and it creates a connection to the middle of the story. It causes the reader to wrongly assume that the reason for the man's despair at the beginning is her, when in fact it is "the war" and his former life. I'm not sure if that's a good thing or not; it simply is.

I found myself by turns intrigued and frustrated that you didn't reveal the man's name! I want to know who he is, but at the same time, you have characterized him such that anonymity suits him. If Elizabeth doesn't know who he is, why should the readers? Also, it is suitable that we don't learn her name until near the end, either. I think that mutual anonymity (from the "my name is" standpoint) extends the idea of strangers bumping into one another.

By the way, I'm usually quite skeptical of scenes where characters collide and then fall in love, but I think you pulled it off very well. In fact, I found this to be a very well-written piece (despite a few inordinately long sentences and a few omitted words here and there). It reminded me a lot of a short story I read in school once, which I liked very much. It was called something like Miss Brill's Hat. (Miss something-with-a-B anyway.) That story also involved sitting in a park and had a similar feel in terms of the flow and mood, although the plot was quite different.

Enough of my rambling. What I'm trying to say is that I enjoyed this story very much and thought it was good.

Author's Response: Wow - I've no idea where to start.

I'm... well, I'm happy you liked this piece. I had my insecurities when it came to it, and I was very happy to see that you had a lot to say about it and especially, that you didn't hold back (: I really appreciate that. On a side note, I love to skip ahead in stories. It's a bad habit, but I can never resist it. I'm happy you managed though!

The POV switch IS weird! And completely unnecessary. Plot-wise. But I love to play around with POVs, and I guess I wanted to emphasize that particular moment and all his feelings; the despair and whatnot. And you are making sense, so don't worry about it.

As for his name - it felt nice not having to choose a name for him. As you said - anonymity suits him - and I agree. I didn't want to name him, because I like to think that it brought out this mysterious and darker side to him that were kind of essential to the plot in general. Yeah, I know, I'm not making sense at all either.

Anyways, thank you so much for this insightful review and I'm sorry for not replying until now. I was seriously speechless.


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Review #2, by Whimsical Diva and by a simple twist of fate, he knew love.

7th January 2009:
Tragic, evocative and beautiful are three words I'd use to describe your writing. It's just impossible to by cynical or critical of this unique style of writing, because every word, every sentence seems so heartfelt and sincere. What is really, really remarkable is that your writing is moving and heart-rending without veering into the realm of angst. Because once you're in the angst territory, the story gets depressing and that takes away all the beauty from the writing.

The starting bit of the story written in second-person is a masterstroke. Because, had you written it in first person, the voice would have sounded very girly. And if it were written in third person, then again I don't think you would have quite achieved the effect you achieved by using the second person narrative. You're really comfortable with this narrative, aren't you? And I liked the fact that a portion of your opening was reused again in part 3; that was a nice touch.

I didn't find the story to be unrealistic at all. Stranger things happen in reality. There was a bit of ambiguity concerning the man's identity and past, but I liked it. It gets incredibly boring when authors spell everything out and leave nothing to the readers' imagination. I especially liked your characterisation of the girl. Though we know very little about her, yet there's this joie de vivre about her which is a perfect foil for the man's irritable disposition.

The letter was heart-rending. Please take this as a compliment, because I don't use the word very lightly. I consider myself to be as unemotional as they come, and very rarely do I react to characters. I'm generally very indifferent. So when I say that the letter was heartbreaking, I hope you understand how truly moving it was. It again had that very beautiful quality to it, without being angst-ridden or depressing. Maybe it is because the characters - both the girl and the man - harbour no bitterness. Both of them seem to accept their fate without any rancour, and that adds to the beauty of the story. The ending was especially bittersweet.

I have only two criticisms.

As I said, I loved the fact that you didn't delve too much into the man's past. But I think had there been a few more... clues; then it'd have been so much more intriguing. In the beginning of the second part, the man breaks the glass in a moment of fury. Now I found that really interesting and was hoping that there would be more such clues which would tell me more about the man's past. I'm not asking you to directly tell, but you could have shown more.

Secondly, there are quite a few grammatical errors. Some of your sentences are run-on sentences and that is only because there is a comma or a semi-colon missing somewhere. By adding a comma or a semi-colon in some places and omitting certain other commas, you can sort this out. Also, some of your sentences are slightly awkwardly structured. Again, this can be fixed by using a different preposition/adding a pronoun/omitting certain words and by tweaking some sentences slightly. I suggest you get this beta-ed again, because you donít want these errors to distract the readerís attention from your beautiful prose.

All in all, I really enjoyed reading and reviewing this. Please feel free to request again; I want to read more of your work.

Renee.

Author's Response: Wow, I'm kind of speechless. First, I'm going to respond to your question about the PoV: yes, I kind of am comfortable with tit. I really love writing in second person - it feels so personal to me. And I can't tell you how glad and relieved I am to hear that you liked the characters and that you didn't find their story unrealistic. You are right, stranger things have probably happened. As for your criticisms: I understand what you mean, about clues... But at the time, while I wrote this, I wasn't entirely sure who I had in mind, and if I wanted him to be an other canon character or an original, and because of that it was hard to make out his past. But, in any case, I'll keep that in mind 'til next time. And I'll take a look at those, or have it re-betaed. I've been aware about those run-on sentences, and I've tried to fix them, but I just haven't been able to. I'll make sure to try again though, thanks for mentioning it. All in all, thank you so, so much for this incredible review. I can't begin to tell you how much it means to me :)

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Review #3, by Misty_Rey and by a simple twist of fate, he knew love.

5th January 2009:
I think it's very brave of you to try something so different and experimental. I also think you should be proud of producing such a successful experiment. It really was an amazing piece of writing that should really be published. One thing that really struck me was the emotion of the story. It was... emotional without being angsty. It had listless depression, tenderness, simple happiness and pain without overdone teen angst weighing it down. Does that make sense? Hopefully ^_^. I actually do quite like the characters, even if the guy did remain nameless. I at first imagined him as Seamus but gradually I now have this image of a reformed, low-rank death eater in mind xD. Anyway, I do like how you portrayed him. He was realistic becase you attached this sluggish, vegetable-state to him without making it over-the-top. The way he gradually began to start to feel had a nice, believeable pace. Elizabeth was great as well. I liked that she acted as a catalyst to bring him out of his depressive shell. Her as a mute added a very interesting layer to the story. They both struck me as believeable while still appearing intruiging. The dialogue was good, you really have nothing to worry about ^_^. My favourite was their first proper conversation, it was both simple and poignant. Actually, most of the lines of dialogue are like that. A few well-chosen sentences that were simple but meaningful. The letter was very sweet. It gave us a glimpse into her life without revealing too much of her mysterious aura. It gave us a picture of her but blurry enough for us to form our own unique perspectives of her. Simply put, this was a fantastic one-shot. I was slightly weary that this was OC/OC but since you're the author, I thought I'd give it a shot. I'm glad I did =). The one thing that did sort of bug me a little was that there were alot of sentences that went really long. So long that I resorted to skimming them over. Over than that, I surprisingly really liked this. 9.5/10!

~Misty

Author's Response: Wow, Misty, I don't know what to reply - this review has left me speechless. ...Now, that I've gathered my thoughts: I'm very happy you decided to read this, and I understand that you were hesitant. I would be too(!), because OC/OC is something I've never been interesting in reading, or writing for that matter. And that you thought this a successful experiment really means a lot to me, because you're right, it was an experiment! And a low-rank Death Eater sounds very plausible (I'm not sure who I had in mind as I wrote this, truth be told...) And that all happened at a believable pace, his starting to feel again, makes me sigh in relief, because that - the pace of this story - was something that also worried me. They are, after all, complete strangers. On the whole, I'm glad you liked these characters and that the letter from Elizabeth was enough just to get a little glimpse into her life, because I didn't want to 'flesh out' them to the extreme. It's always nice with something left for speculation. As for the sentences, yes, some are very long. And I just don't know how to edit them and haven't taken the time to really... I'll try though =) But thank you so much, and sorry for this rambly response. You've made my entire week with this incredible review.

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Review #4, by Girldetective85 and by a simple twist of fate, he knew love.

23rd October 2008:
I think it's completely believable! You did such a fantastic job for this challenge and you managed to capture everything I had wanted to see in a story of this kind :) The characters are very human, as all of the characters you write are. The narrator's anger, heartbreak, sadness were so palpable and real to me. I thought it was especially human of him that he moved on in the end, learning to accept his love for Elizabeth as something that helped him to grow and something special he would always remember, rather than holding it as a grudge or a source of bitterness for the rest of his life. Your stories always have this incredible message of hope in them, and they're so uplifting. I think this is the first story I've read that had a section of second-person narrative, that didn't make me want to scratch my eyes out. You did it so effortlessly that it seems more natural than any other perspective would. The poem at the end, the one you drew inspiration from, is gorgeous. Your writing is always so beautiful and poignant. Where did you learn to write like this!? I'm such a huge fan girl of yours. Just beautiful work. 10/10

Author's Response: I can't tell you how relieved I am to hear that - that it was believable and that they seemed human! I was very worried about this story, because it felt as if it was something I'd never written before. As always, I cannot thank you enough for your wonderful review/s. You've possibly made my whole month with this review - all over again ^_^

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Review #5, by serendip and by a simple twist of fate, he knew love.

20th October 2008:
This was pretty haunting, I tell you. Now, I'm generally not one for OC/OC stories, but I though I could manage one by you, because your stories are always magnificent.

I can see this is different to your normal, but the thing I love about it is that you've managed to write something different, but still keep the 'Romina Stephanie' touch, if that makes sense (which I highly doubt). What I mean is, even though you've tried something new, it's still you and though it's not as obvious, I can see it if I look hard.

So, I'm a hopeless romantic, I know. This story is just feeding my addiction for romance stories, because it's so original, and new, and I love the characters! I love how she's mute, but you never know until the end (I don't exactly understand how she lost her voice though) and I love how he seems so big and scary, but in honesty he's a big fluffy teddy-bear on the inside.

Author's Response: There's this book I read, can't remember the title now, where one character simply began to lose the ability to speak out letters and eventually words. I don't know if it's some kind of disease, or if it's fictional, but I got the inspiration from there. Overall, thank you again for this wonderful review.

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Review #6, by Violet Gryfindor and by a simple twist of fate, he knew love.

16th October 2008:
Somehow, no matter what you write about, it always ends up being absolutely wonderful - this one is no exception. It's amazing how you wrote about unknown characters, yet they appear so realistic and so part of the canon. I could feel the man's anger, his love, his heartbreak. It's hard to find a story that truly strikes one's heartstrings, and this one was successful in reaching that point. Maybe it's because, unlike many stories, the man experiences loss, but still continues on - he doesn't wither away, he's far too much of a realist to lose himself in drama. ;)

The POV change didn't bother me, actually. It worked as a nice introduction or prologue, something that could connect the reader to the main character and draw the reader into the story. I also really liked how you worked in the mute character - the dialogue still felt right because she could, technically speak, just using paper and pen instead of her voice.

This was a different sort of story, and it turned out so amazingly well. A great unique plot, characters, and narrative style, all of which worked together to make this a great piece. =D

Author's Response: I'm speechless! Just... thank you so much, Susan. Your reviews mean the world to me (:

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