Reading Reviews for Ghost in the Machine
  
41 Reviews Found

Review #1, by The Misfit Nightmares

11th July 2012:
I actually cried at the end of the last chapter, the detail that you took with describing Lavender's feelings was brilliant! :D

Hurry up and post chapter three- I can't wait to read more ;)

Kate x

Author's Response: Aw, I'm sorry that you almost cried, but I'm glad you're liking it so much! I should have the next chapter up soon. :) Thank you so much for the review!

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Review #2, by Gin_gin06 Nightmares

4th July 2012:
Hello again! It was definently as good as the first one, I'm just upset you haven't updated since Janurary. I loved this chapter.

Seamus's concern for her is very endearing.

I'm glad that she's gotten herself out of St. Mungos and trying to take the real world one teeney baby step at a time.

I really liked for some reason the bit about her expereinces during seventh year. Since it was only vagueing described in Deathly Hallows, I've always wanted to know what really went on during that time.

Please update soon!

Much love,
Gin-gin

Author's Response: Aw, I'm sorry! I've been working on the next chapter slowly but surely - I had a bit of a rough patch myself this year, and writing this hit a bit too close to home for awhile. I hope to have the next chapter up soon, though.

Thank you so much for the review. I really appreciate it.


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Review #3, by Gin_gin06 Prologue

3rd July 2012:
Hello! I didn't really like Lavender either in hte books, or the movies, but I bet it would be fun to play post-war Lavender. She seemed so hyper. I haven't read any Lavender stories before, so this is the first one.

Okay so I'll start with grammar first. I only found one thing, which makes me really happy. It's easy to read things that aren't distracting you with their grammar issues.

Any hope that it was had faded as she’d woken up, morning after morning, to the reflection of her mangled face in the mirror and the sight of the scarring from the glass on her arm.

I think that in between was and had there should have been 'a nightmare' so that it goes 'Any hope that it was a nightmare had faded as she’d woken up', so that it flows nicer.

One chapter in and I'm already rooting for Lavender to 'wake up' completely in a sense. You described her dettachment brilliantly.

She was not really sure why she was crying. She wasn’t sad. She certainly wasn’t happy.

This line had me crying. I love/hate crying while reading, because it makes me feel connected to the story, and I just plain hate crying. But that's okay, because only good stories make me cry.

She did not want to squish her unicorn.

I like this line becuase it took the edge off of the seriousness in this chapter by adding a little humor at the end.

Okay, I must read the next chapter!!!

Much love,
Gin-gin

Author's Response: Hey! I'm so sorry it's taken me an unforgivably long time to respond to this very lovely review. I allowed a backup to build up when I was away on holiday and busy with RL, and I'm thoroughly embarrassed about it. :(

I'm really, really glad that you liked this and that it had such an impact on you. That's definitely what I was going for. I actually didn't intend to put "a nightmare" in between the "was" and "had," but that's a very good point - the sentence would flow a bit better with that, so I'll add it in as soon as I get the chance. Thank you so much for the review.


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Review #4, by Jenna822 Nightmares

3rd June 2012:
{Challenge Review}

Wow. Okay, to start off with, you're a very good writer. You know how to tell a story that people can, and want to, read. Your style, pace, word choice, grammar, everything...it's spot on.

For the first chapter, I was so glad to see that Parvati and Neville(?) kept coming back. You really showed that Gryffindor stubbornness in them. And you gave so much more credit to Parvati than a lot of people do. For both her and Lavender, you remind the readers that they might have been giggling, silly girls sometimes, but they were still strong, brave, Gryffindor girls. I feel like your pacing was perfect. You kept us hanging long enough on each level of her progress to understand it, while not leaving us there too long to stop caring. I don't know if you intended symbolism with the unicorn or if it was just coincidence, but it was nicely done. I like the second chapter as well. I can see that she's making progress and there's a lot of hope for her future.

Thank you so much for entering my challenge! Results should be posted some time over this next week. ^_^ --Jenna

Author's Response: Thank you so much! It was actually Seamus who kept coming back, not Neville - in the books, Lavender and Seamus always seemed like better friends to me than Lavender and Neville.

I'm glad that you felt this was paced well. Thank you for the review, and for the challenge! :)


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Review #5, by Debra20 Prologue

2nd June 2012:
Hey there. It's Debra20 here with your review!

Let me start by expressing something: "WOW!". I must admit Lavender has never quite been one of my favourite characters in the world of Harry Potter but you just managed to spark my interest for her, and her story.

I must praise you on your idea of her development after the war. It seemed only logical that she couldn't have resisted everything that happened to her with a sane mind. In my opinion, very few could have. Not even Harry. But if it seemed easier for him to surpass the war's consequences, not everyone is that strong. Plus, to me, Lavender has always been the 'dreaming girl', the girl who had great (and rather 'pink') expectations of life. I can't imagine how hard it must have been for her to face the cruelty of war. Seeing her friends and teachers die around her. You just managed to convey those feelings. And the best thing is that everything sounded natural. As if there couldn't have been any other turn out for Lavender.

While reading this lovely story, I couldn't help notice some mistakes here and there. Nothing too grave, I want to add, but still noticeable. Like for example, "She remembering sitting with this girl and talking and giggling as though it had been another life". Correct me if I'm wrong but I think that rather than remembering, remembered is the best tense for the verb. I don't usually look out for these in my reviews because I know I can go wrong at places (not a native English speakers) but I think in that particular instance I might be right. Overall, however, the fluency was very good. All the events succeeded themselves in a very natural pace and nothing seemed out of place.

Also, I like how you pictured her torn decision between talking to her friends or ignoring them. It really did feel like she didn't know what was happening to her and that's not very easy to achieve. I am curious to see what happens next to her!

Author's Response: No, you're not wrong - typo on my part. :) I'll go in and fix it now and give the chapter another read over. One or two typos always manage to escape me while I'm proofreading - thanks for pointing it out! :)

Thank you for your review! I'm sorry it's taken me so long to answer it - I've had less time than I thought I would the last couple weeks.

I'm glad that you felt like it flowed naturally - that's definitely what every author loves to hear, especially when they're taking on a tricky canon character. I think that thinking about what happened to the characters still in Hogwarts during the events of DH is really interesting, because it's such a different environment than what the trio experienced, you know? I'm glad you think that how I developed Lavender in light of that (and the battle, of course) was interesting and believable!

Thank you for the review! Again, I'm so sorry for how long it's taken me to answer it.


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Review #6, by ScorpiusRose17 Prologue

26th May 2012:
This story is so amazing! I love that you took a character that you weren't fond of and brought her to life. I wasn't a huge fan of Lavender and I tend to stay away from stories about her because of that. When I saw your story, I thought that maybe I would give it a try, just one more time. I am glad that I did because you did a wonderful job writing it!

I loved the description of the surroundings and emotions throughout the chapter. You did a terrific job creating a vivid picture in my mind that was easy to follow, yet still hold some mystery to it. I really liked the way that you characterized Lavender. She wasn't like the one we read about in the books. Which was a great change of pace and let her come out as her own character. I feel awful for her that she is trapped in this lonely little world she has created for herself after the war. I hope she turns it around!

Keep up the awesome writing! =)

-SR17

Recenseo 2012

Adding to favorites!

Author's Response: Thank you!

I'm sorry it's taken me so long to answer this - I had a bit of a backlog of reviews and less time than I anticipated to answer them with.

I'm glad you liked it so much! :) I wasn't a huge fan of Lavender, either, but I also saw her character as having a lot of potential. She was a bit silly in the books, but we really only saw her from Harry's perspective, which was pretty cursory. Within that, though, I saw a lot of potential that I could play with and that I think a lot of other writers ignore - she's clearly a bit silly, but she's also clearly got a lot of courage, and I wanted to draw attention to that.

Thank you so much for your review, and again, I'm sorry it's taken me so long to respond!


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Review #7, by marinahill Nightmares

21st May 2012:
The start of this chapter was even more powerful than the last, I thought. It's so sad but so honest and true that people don't get "better" or "cured" after things like this. She's reached a point where she was well enough to leave St. Mungos but after that there's still a long uphill struggle to bring her back up to even a functioning level. It's just so sad and frustrating to read about her being stuck in the mud.

There's light at the end of this tunnel, though, what with the appearance of Seamus and his job. I can see this going one of two ways: she'll get there and not be able to cope, sending her back into a downward spiral. Or it could be eye-opening for her, providing her with something to distract herself from her anxiety with. Starting on something new might just be the way to go, I think.

I love this story so much. It's beautiful and so true to Lavender's character and the aftermath of the war. I can't wait to see what happens next.

Marina

Author's Response: Oh, I'm glad you thought so! I was a bit worried with this chapter - I didn't want to just gloss over the healing process, but at the same time, writing five chapters about Lavender getting to the point where she could leave St. Mungo's and trying to move on and being unable to just didn't really appeal to me, so I decided on a time skip instead.

I definitely agree that sometimes just starting something new can be what people need. Distraction is underrated as a healing aid, and I don't think it should be.

Thank you for your review!


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Review #8, by marinahill Prologue

21st May 2012:
I really love this story, I've been meaning to review for a while but never got around to it *hides*.

You describe Lavender with such delicacy and emotion even though the syntax and description is minimalistic. I like that there's no frilly bits, so to speak. We just see the world as Lavender does, through a fog of numbness. She doesn't remember how to feel or care, she's an empty shell, or as your title aptly puts it, a ghost in a machine. Still, this implies that she's in there somewhere, which is clear to see as the prologue progressed.

I love how it's the echo of a memory that triggers her speech. It's not through trying so hard and practicing, it's not through frustration or a need to please others and speak. Instead, she's just found the right time to speak again, to care again and that's when she finds herself able to speak again.

It was so beautiful and fragile and sad, and I felt an enormous amount of pity for a character I don't usually like. Excellent job. :)

Marina

Author's Response: Aw, no worries, especially given how long it's been taking me to answer your lovely reviews. *also hides*

Thank you so much for the review. I was never a huge fan of Lavender, either, but I always felt like she was a little underrated. She was a little annoying, sure, but the way a lot of people write her, you'd think she was nothing but a ditz, which never seemed to be the case.

And then a plunnie was born. :P

Thank you for the review. ♥


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Review #9, by Cavell Nightmares

17th February 2012:
I loved Lavender. Like you, I had never really liked her before, but stories change things, and yours certainly did. I loved reading this chapter, and things are getting better for her. You've written her as a whole new character starting anew, starting fresh, and that's good. You're really good at writing her, and you need to update soon!

Author's Response: Thank you so much! I'm working on chapter 3, and I'll try to get it up soon. :)

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Review #10, by Hope's Mom Nightmares

5th February 2012:
Lavender has made a lot of progress since the first chapter. Her nightmares must be petrifying. She is lucky to have such a good friend in Parvati and Seamus. Being alone in your own home for long periods of time can make you feel really isolated and alone. I hope in the next chapter she is able to move forward a little a leave her home. Thanks for the new chapter!

Author's Response: Thank you for the review. :) She's definitely going to start moving forward slowly but surely - I'm planning some big time skips in the beginning because while I don't want to rush the recovery, I also don't want to spend 10,000 words on it, and I feel like if I spelled it out that's what it would take to do the issue justice.

Thank you for your review! :)


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Review #11, by Hope's Mom Prologue

5th February 2012:
Lavender was never a favorite character of mine either. I can see how she could have been so damaged by the events of the final battle that she had a breakdown. She had a lot to recover from. As a pretty girl who always enjoyed that attention I am sure that being mauled must have been heartbreaking. Great first chapter!

Author's Response: Oh, I'm really glad you liked it. :) This is definitely one of the fics I'm most attached to, so I'm terrified of messing it up. Thank you!

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Review #12, by adluvshp Nightmares

16th January 2012:
Awesome chapter. I like how Lavendar is slowly trying to come out of her shell. You've written it really well. It's a nice one.

Good going!

10/10

Cheers!
AD

Author's Response: Thank you! I'm so glad you liked it! :)

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Review #13, by dirtydeedsdonedirtcheap Nightmares

9th January 2012:
In a fairy tale, better would have meant all the way better. In a fairy tale, she would sleep like a baby.

Lavender was such a dreamer before, from what I remember. I think the way you incorporated 'fairy tale' into the first chapter and the next was nicely done because it gives us a sense of who she was before this happened to her. You really do explain who she was in the past but since she's so different now it's a nice refresher to know at one point she was a happier person and wasn't going through so much pain.

It took me awhile to get into this chapter only because I think there could have been more of an explanation or something because it was such a leap forward. First we saw her in the ward and now she's home and struggling but how did she get from St. Mungo's to home? I know you mentioned at the top it was a battle but she seems so much more different and functional then she was in the first chapter that it was a big leap for me.

I was also a little, 'hm' (because 'hm' really explains what I mean)...with Seamus. He seemed very forceful for a moment. Especially when he asked her if she was a coward. I don't think even in the best times someone would say that to someone else who has been through something so traumatic. But I can't entirely say I didn't like the line because you did explain that her friends don't really understand what she's going through. They want her back but it doesn't seem he entirely understands just how hard it is for her to get up and move, let alone go outside and interact with all these people and creatures.

Other than that I thought it was a good chapter. You're really incapable of writing a bad chapter, so don't doubt yourself. :D

Author's Response: I can totally understand how it felt a bit disjointed. My issue was that I know how long the recovery process takes, and I really didn't want to spend half the story on it, you know? Hmm. I'm going to try to change the focus of chapter one a bit so it comes off more as a prologue. Hopefully that should help.

I also know what you mean about Seamus - I've actually gone through and revised that a bit, so hopefully it comes off better now! :)

Thank you so much for your review!


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Review #14, by dirtydeedsdonedirtcheap Prologue

9th January 2012:
Lavender is an after thought to me. I have only ever read one other story about her and that's a comedy so this was different going into it. I at first wasn't sure where this is going because I tend to not like to read about institutions because they hit close to home when someone mentions them, especially if they do it in such a way where they start to make fun of the fact that sometimes people end up in institutions and effected in ways that never make them the same again.

I know you would never write anything that would offend anyone so I gave this a try and I'm really glad I did actually. I thought it was very emotional and I found myself wanting to cry because Lavender was able to push herself to speak to her friends even though in real life I think it's much harder for someone that has been in such a traumatic experience to find the urge to speak, especially if they are under heavy doses of medication. You didn't mention that, I don't think. I'm not entirely sure if you did mention that she was on some medicine, whether it be potions or something else because I'm not sure if she is and that might be effecting her thought processes or she's not and it's really just the internal decision of her own to not speak because it's to hard. Even though if she was on medicine it would be her decision to not speak as well though it might play a bigger factor into the way she responds and the way she thinks.

Also, I just have one sort of...eh, it's more personal opinion than anything but I feel like you could have used dreamt instead of dreamed, I think it would have come across smoother and the use of the 't' in my head, makes it sound even stronger than it already is because it's one of those words that you have to say (or read) as a 'hard' t. I don't know if that makes any sense to you. I can explain what I mean with the way the spanish language is spoken but not english (which is weird considering english is my first language).

Anyway, I really thought this was a good chapter and you laid it out where I'm intrigued on what's going to happen but I hope that the process of Lavender trying to pull herself together again is a slow one because if you rush it I don't think it'll be as believable as it already is.

Author's Response: You're actually the second person who said they prefer "dreamt" to "dreamed," and after I thought about it, I decided I liked that better, too, so I have gone through and changed it. :)

I didn't mention any medicine - I considered it, but I decided against it for two reasons. First, I don't think that I have ever liked the insertion of potions as a direct replacement for the medication of modern day psychiatry (or even other medications), especially since everything I saw in the books indicated to me that mental health issues in the wizarding world really aren't handled very well, even compared to the real world. Second, I really wanted to put the focus on her, rather than on the Healers. If that makes sense?

As a sidenote: If I ever make fun of institutions/mental illness - or, more likely, if Lavender does - know that it's gallows humor born out of a lot of experience, not callousness.


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Review #15, by Mihali1432 Nightmares

6th January 2012:
...

I've never like Lavender either (Referring to your past A/N) but... This is interesting. Seamus too... I'm usually an all next-gen or Marauders... Mostly Next gen. This has... Gotten my attention and you HAVEEE to tell me when the next chapter is up. xD

YOU HAVE TO. Ok moving on... It's soo... soo... realistic how she is now afraid of the dark (A phobia I have myself...) and... How she reacts. I just... Love it xD

Nice confidence booster yes? It's well deserved :D

Mike.

Author's Response: I know! I typically go next-gen all the way, especially for my writing, because I like exploring more uncharted territory, but this kind of jumped into my head and just refused to leave.

I have a confession: I'm afraid of the dark, too, and I definitely drew on that here.

Thank you so much for your review! I'll definitely tell you when I update it. :)


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Review #16, by Mihali1432 Prologue

6th January 2012:
BEEEZIE! Ok I'm finally here... With your reward reviews. xD

I'll admit, THIS WAS AWESOME. Ok? Just... Awesome.

I loved it really. I couldn't find any grammar faults (But we both know, I'm not the greatest at that xD), or just faults in the chapter/story as a whole... I just... loved it.

Continuing on!

Mike.

Author's Response: Yay! I was especially curious about what you'd think of this given the relationship with Dark Side of the Moon, so I'm really glad you liked it. :)

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Review #17, by Manga_girl Nightmares

6th January 2012:
Hiya, it is me again!

And this is another amazing chapter! First of all, I have a teeny bit of constructive criticism. The only think I could think of. Seamus sounds a bit not-Seamus'y (I made up a word). I know he would have changed after the war, grown up even but I think just a small part of his speech does not sound like JK wrote him in the books.

That aside, this was another amazing chapter. It flowed from one part to another perfectly as if I was actually there, watching the events happen in front of my eyes. It was amazing how well it just read, nothing interrupted the flow at all!

I love your language and word choices. You have a lot of variety in here with your wording and nothing is repeated too much. It passes every bit of information onto the reader and they know exactly what is happening and how the plot and actions to move it along reflect across the characters. Each tiny detail is amazing yet again.

I like how you wrote Lavender, she seems to have grown from the first chapter but still have nightmares and problems so it seems so...natural and realistic. She has so much depth to her and more than what we saw from canon.

This is so incredible, I cannot wait to see more of this,

E x

Author's Response: No, I know exactly what you mean. I think I captured his Seamus-y-ness (yay, I'm making up words, too, haha) in the first chapter, but here there were a couple points that didn't quite work. I'm going to reread the Seamus parts of the books at some point soon to try and improve that a bit.

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


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Review #18, by Manga_girl Prologue

6th January 2012:
Hello Beeezie!

This, so far, is amazing. You manage to keep the reader engaged throughout the whole chapter with the way you decide to conceal and the reveal information about the plot and characters. It was beautiful how you portrayed it in a sad but ever so slightly dreamy tone.

Lavender was characterised perfectly. And she has never been one of my favourite characters either but this was just...perfect. All the tiny bits of information were thrown in together like the detail about the unicorn and it connected with the reader so well.

I did not notice any mistakes in this! And I just love it when an author takes time to make sure everything is perfect to the tiniest of details and that is what you have done here.

Another thing I loved was the emotion in this! It makes the reader want to know what did happen after the war to Lavender. It makes them want to know what happens next. If she will be normal.

My favourite line was this: 'Lavender no longer believed in fairy tale endings, because fairy tales did not involve getting your face ripped off and having no fairy godmother to make you pretty again.' It captured everything so beautifully and put everything into perspective. About how Lavender felt. It was incredible.

I really want to know what happens next, this is so engaging and I am off to read and review the next chapter. :)

Emma x

Author's Response: Oh, yay! Thank you so much for such a nice review!

I occasionally have a couple typos here and there that slip through, but yeah, I really do try to keep things as polished as possible, and I do tend to have a decent attention to detail.

I'm really glad it came across the way it did - I was definitely going for kind of a dreamy, melancholy tone! :)

Thank you again. :) I really appreciate it.


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Review #19, by AC_rules Prologue

30th December 2011:
Hi there! Please excuse the time delay in you getting this request review (in October, I believe.) but there was a slight hiccup and all of time stopped.

Okay, you got me. That was a lie. I've just been super-busy :(

Okay, second line: Issue - Every night, Lavender dreamed about the battle. I just really think it would sound so much smoother and lovlier if you used 'dreamt' I don't think 'dreamed' is wrong... I just think 'dreamt' sounds a lot cleaner. Actually, its in the next few paragraphs too. In my head I'm just translating it to 'dreamt' because it just FEELS better to me.

Oh, pants. I'm nearly crying now. Honestly, this was so moving you don't even understand. I guess part of it is a healthy dose of personal context which I'm obviously not going to go into but... you... this was so emotive. I haven't read any post-war fics and this really was fantastically written.

It was like... hmm, I don't think it was the quality of your words or imagery that sucked me in most but what you were actually saying. What was left when you stripped down all that complicated bits of writing and communication was just compeltely harrowing. I love things like that.

It was so real and wonderful. I bet this is going to be a hell of a story, I can feel it.

The only critism I have is the the whole dreamed/dreamt thing and I'm sure part of that is just personal opinon (I still think you should change) other than that I think you should put a warning at the beginning saying 'this will break your heart' and then you're good to go :)

Loved it.

-AC

Author's Response: Oh, no worries. Life happens, I get that. :)

Hmm. I don't typically use words like "dreamt," but I'll look it over again and consider it. I definitely see what you mean about it feeling cleaner.

And, oh, I didn't want you to cry! Well, okay, maybe in some ways I kind of did. Not you in particular, but I'm glad that I'm getting a reaction, you know? And... oh, I'm going to stop talking now. At any rate, I do know what you mean about personal context - I definitely have my own experiences and demons that I draw on when I'm writing this fic, for this chapter in particular.

Thank you so much for the review. I can't tell you how much I appreciate it.


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Review #20, by Secret Santa Nightmares

27th December 2011:
I swear, I want to send you one of those motivational tapes or something. Well. I wouldn't do that because I am extremely sceptical of them, but I still don't understand why you are always so unsure of yourself in your footnote author notes. Of course this is as good as your last chapter, how can it not be?

You mentioned in your response to my other chapter review that this was your favourite story. And, you know what? I think it might be mine, too. I don't know what it is but Lavender's character is one that I can really, really relate to. Which is insane, because I don't get panic attacks or am scared of the dark or anything like that. But you make her very real.

What I think comes across most clearly in this is her frustration. I get the feeling that she is just fed up with feeling the way she is, but she is also terrified and doesn't know how to move past her fear. Argh. How do you do it? How, how, how? You make me feel everything your characters feel and more. I am really able to connect to your characters in ways that I never imagined. I am the first to admit that I love reading fanfiction (obviously) but responding to review requests can sometimes be a bit tiresome, especially if what I am reading is not my cup of tea.

Your writing is never like that. I enjoy every word that you write and I always hate when I get to the end of one of your WIPs and realise that there are no more chapters to read. Like this one.

Does this also fit in the world of your Teddy/Victoire stories? I love how you do that. They are all in different eras with different characters but they just fit so seamlessly together. That's so clever!

Author's Response: Aww! ♥ I promise I don't need motivational tapes - I actually have a pretty healthy ego. ;) I'm a true Gryffindor like that! I'm just also a perfectionist, which means that I'm a lot more critical of myself. :P (I may not be helping my case here...)

I know that you hadn't read all of my chapters at this point (and can I just say, wow - that's just amazing, I had no idea my secret santa would decide to read everything! you made my December!), but I'm really glad that at this point it was one of your favorites too.

I know what you mean about review requests... I love it, but sometimes it's exhausting. Which is why my queue is terrible right now. Oops. (Well, and I've been busy.) I'm glad mine isn't like that for you, though!!

Lavender I can do because... I have had some mental health issues in the past, and frustration was definitely one of the most prevalent feelings!

And yes, this does fit into the Teddy/Victoire world! I put lots of work into world building, I don't want to have to do it more than once. ;) (And I mean lots of work. Full class lists, schedules, who took which classes, who dropped out, who are cousins. yeah.)


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Review #21, by Ghetto Santa Nightmares

23rd December 2011:
yo, santa is back!

I love how you throw us back into Lavenders new world. This was an excellent second chapter and I'm really looking forward to reading chapter three. I am enjoying this story quite a bit, it's unlike everything I've read before because you're using an underused character so I'm really liking it. I love your use of language, it's brilliant. The characterisation is amazing, it seems to real to me. I love how Pavarti and Seamus are still visiting her regularly, that just shows that they care a lot about her. I love the fact that she has mental scars to match her physical ones, it's all very real and I think you're doing brilliantly.

love, santa.
(mince pies don't eat themselves you know ;)

MERRY CHRISTMAS TOO.

Author's Response: Merry Christmas, Santa!

I'm really glad you liked this chapter, too! I love this story - it's one of my favorite of mine - so it makes me really happy when other people like it, too! :)


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Review #22, by CloakAuror9 Nightmares

22nd December 2011:
The archives won't let me login, unfortunately, but here's you review:

So first off all I like the way all your stories kind of relates to each other. I suppose this one kind of relates to the dark side of the moon, yes?

I feel like there's some bits and pieces of this story missing or maybe it's just the fact that I haven't read this story for ages and chapter one to chapter two didn't really work out for me.

The plot is very straight forward as always and your characterisation is very wonderful. I like the way you made the war affect Lavender so much and I think that this will make her a better person later on the story. The way she had trouble casting a spell and how she was afraid of the dark gave me the a quick impression of how her state of mind and body is going: not going well.

Overall, I really liked the chapter and I would love to review the next one.

Off to the shopping centre for my last minute christmas shopping,
CloakAuror9 xx

Author's Response: Ugh, that's so annoying. I'm sorry.

And yes, it definitely does! I'm really glad you like the fact that they all relate to each other - it's really how I think. They're like little puzzle pieces that all fit together.

Thank you so much for your review. I'm really glad that you thought that this was a good chapter on the whole, and thank you for pointing out the disconnect between chapters 1 and 2.

Happy Christmas! :)


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Review #23, by CambAngst Nightmares

21st December 2011:
Hello, again! I've been looking forward to this.

So right off the bat, let me say that your writing is flawless. No typos, spelling or grammatical errors that I could see. It's well-executed from that standpoint.

I struggled a bit to make the leap from the first chapter to this one. That might just be because it's been a while since I read Chapter 1, but I also think that you might need something to help bridge the gap. The last time we saw Seamus and Parvati, they were visiting Lavender in the hospital and helping her come out of her shell. I feel like the story would benefit from something that gives us some idea how much time has passed and how Lavender came to be where she is.

The idea that Lavender would have severe mental scars from the battle to match her physical ones makes perfect sense to me. The small details like the globes and the difficulty she had casting spells really help to convey her state of mind. Her interaction with Seamus also came across as slightly uncomfortable, which reinforces your narrative.

I'm looking forward to the next chapter. I feel like the story is right on the cusp of kicking into gear.

Author's Response: Yeah, I was a bit worried about whether I'd managed to pull off the time skip well... : Thank you!

I'm really glad you're continuing to like this! And yes, it's definitely about to kick into gear and get interesting. ;)

Thank you so much for the review. I really appreciate it.


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Review #24, by Secret Santa *gives cookies* Prologue

21st December 2011:
HO HO HO. Yo, this is your secret santa, giving ya cookies and reviews.

You have a real talent for writing, it's fluid and natural. The words just from the page. Lavender is a very under used character. I see her being ripped apart in fanfics too many times, yes, she might have been an immature girl, but who hasn't been (providing they are female), I don't think people should judge her on the actions/personality she had/did when she was 16. I mean, she came back to the battle to fight. It's more than Draco Malfoy can say yet he gets more love. Anyway, I love your take on her pain. It's real, it's tense and it's captivating. You just write human emotion so well.

In all, this is amazing. And I can't wait for the next chapter!

HAPPY HOLIDAYS.

LOVE,
SANTA.

Author's Response: I know! I appreciate Draco to some extent because I think that he shows some growth in the last few books, but seriously, Lavender's only crime was being a little immature. People love Ron, and I personally think that deciding to do out with someone just because you're jealous of the guy your friend dated a year and a half ago is a lot more immature that Lavender acted. Yet somehow Lavender gets all kinds of hatred and Ron is adored. It doesn't make sense!

Okay, I'm done ranting.

Thank you so much. I'm really glad you like this. :) :) :)


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Review #25, by SilentConfession Nightmares

20th December 2011:
Hello again, i'm back for your second chapter since it's up.

Again, i think this is a lovely chapter and i think you did a great job with showing Lavender's state of mind. It still isn't perfect and she still is very shaken up from the whole thing which i think is an excellent observation. It's going to take a long time for her to get better. You said it's been about a year now and her growth has been stagnated. I think this was great in showing how long it's taking her to get better but i also felt like i wanted to see some of that as well rather than being told it.

I think the first scene was my favourite, this raw fear of the things that go bump in the night. I think you wrote this very effectively of how a noise just outside her door made her seize up or how she was afraid to look out the windows past sundown. That really showed the readers how, although she was a living and breathing character, she is still trapped by the horrors of the war.

I like how Pavarti and Seamus are still visiting her regularly and being that social support that she desperately needs. i'm glad that she has the ability to trust people. Although, i wondered why they weren't showing up together more if they were dating. I also liked how you mentioned Ron, it really made it seem like it was happening post Hogwarts with all those characters in it as well. It makes sense that Ron or Harry or any of them would be part of her life as well. They were all Gryffindor’s, so it was good to see them being involved. Also, sometimes when you leave school, you make connections with people you were never really connected with before. (although she definitely 'connected' with Ron ;D)

The only things i can suggest with this chapter is with the first scene when she is having a panic attack. Show it more, when people have panic attacks, they feel like they are going to die and it's incredibly hard for them to calm down after. Their heart will feel like someone is squeezing it to smithereens, their palms will most likely be sweaty, things like that. it would be nice to see some of these changes in the story itself. You have most of the components and i think it is a very good job and the only reason that i noticed this specifically is that i study psych. Overall you did a great job with that. I just think that if you took it one step further we'd feel like we were getting into Lavender's state of mind more.

I like too that Seamus was inviting her to work with him in this new department. I feel like it is one for the places she'd fit in well. We see in the books she was one of the ones herding in the Blasted ended skwerts, so that was a lovely touch you had. Also, i'd almost see her become incredibly passionate over this because a dangerous animal damaged her... i can see her character becoming incredibly determined to make sure this doesn't happen to anyone else. Great choice. Thank you again for requesting me, i've enjoyed reading this story so far and i think you have done an excellent job with it.

Author's Response: Thank you so much for your review! I'm really glad that you liked the bit about Ron in particular - I was afraid that it would come across as odd and out of place, and I'm very glad it didn't.

I'm glad for your feedback about the panic attack, because I was of two minds about how to portray it. I actually specifically did not want to show her feeling like she was literally about to die and having a very visible reaction in the way you're describing, because while that's how panic attacks are classically portrayed, I think that it's a vast oversimplification of a very diverse experience.

I actually also have a degree in psychology (and english), and the insistence of my professors, particularly in lower level classes, to treat psychological conditions as fairly uniform always frustrated me immensely. I suffer from panic attacks, as do several of my closest friends, and we experience them and react in very different ways.

I was, however, definitely afraid that I hadn't gone into quite enough depth for her. In particular, I was worried about portraying her thoughts. Because I was trying to summarize her life up to that point and portray the panic attack, I was definitely afraid that it would get lost in translation.

I'll have to look back into that. Thank you for the feedback - it's really helpful. (Also, I really hope that I didn't come off as ungrateful or argumentative, because I really really wasn't trying to be! I've reworded this about ten times, and if it comes off in any way poorly it's because I'm frustrated with the education system and my uni experience as a psych major with a mental illness, not you!)

Thank you. A lot. I really appreciate it. :) (And, yay, fellow psych major! *high-five*)


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