Reading Reviews for That Bitter Pill
8 Reviews Found

Review #1, by academica And There We Stood...Watching

5th February 2012:
Hey! This is prize review #3 :)

You know, for me, it's really odd that you chose Margaret as the name of Barty Crouch Sr.'s sister, because I wrote a Barty Crouch, Jr. one-shot where I created an OC he was involved with as a young man and I named her Margaret. Eerie!

Anyway, I thought this was a really great study of the emotion of regret, especially given its brevity. I think you painted the gravity of the moment quite well, and it was very reminiscent of Dumbledore's death for me, because it focused on everyone at Hogwarts dealing with the aftermath of a tragedy that they utterly failed to comprehend. It's so sad for them to think that they caused Myrtle's death, even if it was Olive Hornby's teasing that drove her into the bathroom, because the casualty was really just part of a bigger, more sinister plan that none of them were really aware of yet. Thus, it was nice to get another perspective on this event.

The imagery was really good, especially the description of Myrtle's cold, lifeless form, and I liked Margaret's honest appraisal of the situation and all of her accusatory remarks. I think the title of the piece is rather fitting for the theme.

Great work! :)


Author's Response: Hey lovely!

Ooh, really? I'll have to go read that when I get chance :)

You know, it's amazing what reading someone else's story can make you do. This wasn't something I ever gave much thought to. Moaning Myrtle to me was as obscure as Cornelius Fudge. After reading EmeraldCity's one-shot, I couldn’t stop thinking about what might have happened, and how people must have felt after they found out she died under such tragic circumstances.

There's the guilt that eats away at them, would it have been different had they done something that day? Or perhaps someone should've nipped it in the bud. That was Margaret's cross to bear for years to follow. You were right about her death being part of something much more sinister. Honestly, I don't think the circumstances would've changed much had they done something about it before. Perhaps Tom Riddle would've found someone as obscure and plain as Myrtle was. The effect would've been the same. No one would possibly understand the gravity of it all.

I initially chose McGonagall to be the narrator in this story, but thought it would be better to have it from a more neutral perspective. She was affected in her own way by her failure to act, and that she was the one who found Myrtle on the floor. I couldn't picture any other scene than that.

Thank you for your review, my dear!


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Review #2, by TenthWeasley And There We Stood...Watching

5th February 2011:
Hello, this is TenthWeasleyWriter from the forums, popping by with your review!

Wow. This was a truly beautiful fic, it's obvious you took great care in writing it. =) I loved the originality of it, as most people wouldn't think twice about writing something like this.

I love your writing style - poetic, yet simple, and it conveys the message of the piece well. The length of the fic was brilliant as well, and the ending just haunted me for a few minutes after I'd finished. I didn't even start this review for a bit. =)

VERY well done, I'm very intrigued by your story. 10/10 for sure, I loved reading this! Feel free to come by any time for more. ^^

Author's Response: Hi TenthWeasley!

Thank you so much! I think you'd be surprised if I said this didn't take me long at all. I think I was so into it that I was hammering away on my laptop trying to get it all down.

I think you're right about that too. I never even thought about this either, not until I read that fic. I think it's something people should consider. Usually, Myrtle's death would be from her point of view or Tom Riddle's, Dumbledore's and even McGonagall. Putting it in the perspective of a regular Hogwarts student makes us feel like if we're there. I don't doubt that some people have been in similar situations where they were just an observer instead of trying to help. So it speaks to them...even to me.

Seriously? It haunted you, wow! I figured that some of the students back then might have felt more guilt and regret than anything else. Those are things that sting much harder than sadness ever can.

Thank you for your lovely review! I really appreciate it :)


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Review #3, by Roonyskatoony And There We Stood...Watching

28th January 2011:
I always felt kind of sorry for Myrtle, I mean yeah she spends ages moaning(!) but still.

Anyway! I think you did a beautiful job at portraying such an amazing and interesting idea. Especially the way that it's appreciated that it's regret and guilt that they're feeling rather than being particularly sad about her actually dying.

It's one of those things that I guess you never want to think, more because it makes you feel like a bad person.

So well done for such a well written piece!
Feel free to request again! :D

Author's Response: Hi Roonyskatoony! (I really like your penname by the way)

Ahaha, I agree. I felt sorry for her too.

I think if they felt sad then it wouldn't be sincere. I didn't want to create any misconceptions for anyone here, I wanted to get a feel of how people really felt when Myrtle died. Sadness would require actually caring and from Myrtle's constant moaning, you could see that caring wasn't the case with these people.

That's a very good point, thank you for bringing that up! It's true, we would think of anyone else as a bad person but it's not an adjective to use willingly when describing ourselves.

Thank you so much for your review!
Have a great weekend!

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Review #4, by onestop_hpfan18 And There We Stood...Watching

19th January 2011:
Hi Lia, here to review. I must say firstly that I really thought you did a fabulous job writing from Margaret's perspective and how she felt finding Myrtle laying on the floor of the bathroom, dead. As for the length, I don't think you need to expand on it at all. You ended at just the right moment and the whole piece was well paced and flowed together well without seeming rushed in the least. With a one-shot like this I don't think anything needs to be explained further than how the character felt about this terrible event that happened. Over all, great job and keep it up! 10/10

Author's Response: Hi Leslie,

When I chose Margaret, I did it with the intention of having someone who was was unbiased when it came to either Myrtle or Olive Hornby. I imagine that accounts of Myrtle's death from either perspective would be very different.

I'm really glad you think so, I was a bit concerned about it.

Thank you so much for reviewing. I really appreciate it!

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Review #5, by GubraithianFire And There We Stood...Watching

14th January 2011:
(I'm very upset because I COMPLETELY wrote one of my essays for this and then it disappeared. I'm such a fail, so here I go again:)

Hi, Lia! Here with your review (for the second time).

I just thought this was a very clever fic, and I applaud you for doing it. I remember alluding to the sort of scene Margaret finds herself in in an awful Tom/OC novel from years ago, but i like this infinitely better. The flashback-within-the-flashback device (if you can call it that, and I will because I can't think of anything better) worked really well. Margaret finding the body was my favorite part because it rang really true; she's suitably confused, terrified, convinced for a moment that it's a joke.

And I like Margaret, too, by the way, especially the idea of using Barty Crouch's sister. I wasn't sure what to think about the narrator until you revealed who she was; I kind of like the idea of keeping the narrator faceless, but giving her a name - specifically that name - saddles her with a lot of emotional baggage we wouldn't have had otherwise. Thinking about her outside of this particular story and in her daily life makes me think about her brother. I wonder how it is that she sees the folly in the student body's collective behavior; I wonder what sort of upbringing she's had and how it has colored her perceptions, as well as her brother's and how Crouch Sr's perceptions color his son's. It's like you channel all of those questions and unresolved issues through this one name, making her role in this particular fic like just a fraction of the big picture, whatever that is.

The one piece of concrit I have is that as a whole, I'm not sure the execution is there entirely. It's wonderful work, to be sure, but I think it could be better. I said in the first version of this review that I liked how Margaret avoided a lot of the introspection/reflection I would expect from something like this, touching on it a little in the beginning, but by the end, I'm not sure what else she wants to say that she hasn't already. The paragraph beginning "Despite the guilt," I thought, was a bit obvious in the way it expresses the sentiment; it's a little heavy-handed. I think the fic could be taken to a whole other level if the wording was a little subtler. At the same time, the force of Margaret's regret is the driving force behind the fic, so I see why you wrote it like that, but that's just my two cents.

All in all, I thought this was a very clever little piece, even though it did drift a little bit into the realm of the expected. Well done!

Author's Response: Hi Gubby!

(Darn, I would have loved to read one of your essays :/ No worries, I'll revisit your thread soon with something worthy of your viewing)

Clever? Hmm. That's a word I wouldn't have thought to put to this but I like it...I'll go with it. I hadn't seen much of these sorts of storylines floating around at all. Then when I read EmeraldCity's fic, I just had to write it. As I told you, it was sort of written on a whim and after I ran out of steam, I posted it. Well I can't think of anything else to call it either so we'll work with that. It sort of makes sense, doesn't it...her being all those things at once. The reason why I made her think it was a joke because I saw Myrtle doing something like that, just to make everyone else feel guilty or at least to see how they would react and Margaret was thinking along those same lines... If you understand what I'm trying to say.

I'm glad you like her! I rather like her too : ). I'd always planned on naming her, I just couldn't think of the right name at first. She wasn't a personal friend of Myrtle but neither was she a bully. She was one of those students who just observed everything so she wouldn't be biased when it came to this. To me it's interesting how you think of Barty Sr when you read about his sister. Honestly any character could make one ask those questions but considering what we know of Barty, the distinction becomes larger. I like that you brought that up actually, it gives me something to think about.

Hmm. Ok. I thought about that when I finished writing this; if there was anything else I could include, whether it be more description or expanding on her thoughts. Like you, I wasn't sure what else was left for her to say. If she regretted what happened so much then I suppose she tried to suppress the memory as much as possible. The more thinking she did then the worse she felt.

I agree, it is heavy-handed and sounds a bit like I stumbled. Subtlety isn't exactly my strong-suit but I'm trying to make an effort to improve myself. Thank you for pointing that out.

Thank you so much for taking the time out to review and give your feedback, my dear. It is much appreciated!


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Review #6, by Marzipan And There We Stood...Watching

12th January 2011:
This was short and sweet, and kept me guessing until almost the end, so kudos for that!

Just from reading the summary etc, I was expecting it to deal with Dumbledore's death, but then I started to read and that theory was pretty much immediately dashed. Worked out quickly enough that it was Myrtle we were talking about, but even after figuring out that mystery I was still left puzzled over who it was the was narrating. For a minute I was still stuck in my Dumbledore theory and thought it was him, but thought it was rather harsh for him. Then I thought is might be Myrtle herself, in a shocked state after dying, then perhaps Olive Hornby, and then finally it is revealed to be Margaret Crouch.

Margaret is definitely an interesting choice to use with this piece; she provides just enough distance from what happened to give us some perspective on Myrtle and the way people treated her. It's really tragic, and you sum it all up beautifully here:

The only thing I felt was regret, not sadness. And that was the worst feeling in the world.

How horrible to have had to live a life where people can't even say they are saddened by your passing. This just makes me feel so sorry for Myrtle. You've done a fabulous job of conveying the emotions in this piece. Wondeful!

Author's Response: Hey Marzipan!

Oh no, I really didn't intend for anyone to be confused! I'm sorry. Yeah, the tone was too harsh for me to be talking about Dumbledore. I guess I understand how the information I provided would be misleading. I think Olive Hornby's account of things would be way more angst-filled than this one but still, a very interesting story to read!

YES! Exactly! That's exactly why I chose her. I didn't want a major character nor did I want an OC. After some browsing, she came to me! She was one of those who just stood there and watched the taunting and the bullying. Being a prefect, I assume she would have said something once in a while but at the same time, she could not have been there all the time.

You have to wonder, how could they be sad about her dying? Some of them bullied and taunted her, then the rest of them just stood there and watched the display, not lifting a finger to intervene. How could they feel anything but regret and perhaps guilt? As I mentioned in the story, they didn't even deserve to shed any tears after how they treated her. Not at all. Heh, I dunno, if you can tell, but I'm not very impressed with bullies.

From Myrtle's tales of the days before her death, it seems like she never had any friends. That's what makes the entire thing horrible. She was just.there.

When I used 'regret' I meant it in terms of them not doing anything to help her when she needed it. Now that she's gone, it's something that will lay heavy on their consciences. If that makes sense.

Thank you so much for reviewing! And thank you for the discussion :) They're both much appreciated!


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Review #7, by amandatonks And There We Stood...Watching

11th January 2011:
This was incredibly sad, as I'm sure you meant it to be. I've always wanted to read a story about Myrtle and how people reacted to her death. It's heartbreaking that no one seemed to care about her, but oddly fitting to how she described her misfortunes to Harry in her ghost form.

I love your writing style. It's not overly descriptive, which I think adds to the shock of the situation. And I was pleasantly surprised when I realized what point of view this was coming from. :) I enjoy reading about more obscure characters like Margret Crouch and her family. I loved your take on her.

So I just wanted you to know how much I adored this. It was heartbreaking and sad. A perfect way to add clarity to the mystery of Moaning Myrtle's life.


Author's Response: Hi Kristen!

I've only ever read one story about Myrtle's death but it didn't focus that much on the students. And after reading one about what happened to her before she died I just became so inspired.

An author has to be absolutely brilliant for them to inspire you to write anything! The way how EmeraldCity wrote about Myrtle's treatment encouraged me to write about how those same students would have felt after she died. Or at least how someone who wasn't involved, would have seen things.

I won't say that they didn't care, it's just that they felt guilty. I wrote that no tears were shed which would make sense because how could they even consider crying over someone they taunted day after day?

I was a bit concerned about the lack of description, to be honest but then, this one does the one-shot more justice. You are right, it does add shock to the situation! It's much more blunt than expected.

When I was writing this, like I told the reviewer below you (maskedmuggle), I really had no idea who my narrator would be. I didn't want to create an OC but I didn't want a canon character that everyone knew about. So I browsed Lexicon for a suitable last name then the BFT then I came up with Crouch and just gave her a first name that was used back in the 1940s. I'm really glad you like her!

Thank you so much for your review!! I'm really glad you liked it!


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Review #8, by maskedmuggle And There We Stood...Watching

10th January 2011:
Here for the review! :)

Wow. Seriously, I really enjoyed this. A completely different look at Myrtle's death, and really, the first story I've read about Myrtle's death that doesn't focus on Myrtle specifically staring into the basilisk, and ending with some line like, "And then I died."

I like your plot. A lot. Not many people, if any, have written this. None that I've read anyway. Very well written, really. Your writing is brilliant, everything flows along! The thoughts and emotions are so very well expressed... and the feelings are so real.

Characterisation wise, I thought it was all fantastic. Margaret Crouch is an interesting character and you brought out her opinion on Myrtle's death nicely.

I didn't find no spelling/grammar/punctuation mistakes, so that's brilliant! I just found this sentence, "They knew within themselves they brought her end." to be a little awkward.. Maybe something like, "They knew within themselves that they had brought about her end." Just my opinion though.

Really, this was wonderfully written, and a unique insight into Myrtle's death. I really enjoyed reading this! And I hope more people will read and review it too, because it deserves it :)

Thanks for requesting! (AND REVIVING MY THREAD :D)
Enjoyed it, a lot! :)

- maskedmuggle / Charlotte

Author's Response: Heyy Charlotte!

I really don't know what came over me. One minute, I was reading EmeraldCity's interpretation of Myrtle's death, then I guess I just became incensed. The way how she wrote it dealt a lot with the bullying and it evoked such an emotion in me, I wanted to write about how they felt after they found out she died from the eyes of an unbiased person who never instigated anything but just watched what was going on. I don't particularly like bullying and how she wrote it, it was just cruel. Wow.

I read one story which detailed what happened afterwards but it was more focussed on Tom Riddle and their opinion of him but nothing really of this sort.

It took me a while to decide who my observer would be. My thoughts went from McGonagall, to one of the Slytherins that Tom Riddle associated with but then I figured I needed to have someone who represented the majority of the student body who just stood and did nothing. I scanned Lexicon for names and finally decided on a Crouch who I rather like :)

Yeah, I understand what you're saying about that sentence. I'll go change it as soon as I'm done. Thank you for pointing that out!

I'm really really glad you enjoyed this! I suppose if I request some more, it would get some exposure. My author page doesn't get so much play, lol.

Thank you so much for reviewing! I figured since you visited my thread and I helped you, you could help me with this fic too.


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