Reading Reviews for The Fall of the Fourth Sister
  
14 Reviews Found

Review #1, by cypress The Madness of a Mother

17th October 2013:
Well, I've finished reading, and just want to say, this story has gotten more interesting by the chapter! I'm happy to see some of the cool snobbishness showing itself, and am kind of curious what will happen with Ambrosia and Voldemort.

It's interesting I think that he finds him attractive. I haven't changed my mind about my comment on the first chapter, that this could just as easily be Bellatrix's story, because we all know how absolutely ga-ga she was over Voldemort.

But that doesn't mean I don't like your choice to focus on an OC instead. I like the dynamic of the sisters and how it's all playing out.

One part that was a little bit confusing was the point where Ambrosia left the clock shop - at first I thought you were talking about Bellatrix but had to go back and reread to see that it was actually Ambrosia being followed by the clerk. I think it was just the use of pronouns, and maybe replacing a few "she"s with "the younger sister" or "Ambrosia" might help clarify that.

Also, one last thought, and I'll leave you alone, I promise... ;) I wonder - why doesn't Ambrosia have a nickname? Narcissa is Cissy, Bellatrix is Bella. Pretty sure they called Andromeda something, too. Just a thought I had, that maybe Ambrosia might have one too, but of course, she could simply prefer her full name.

Anyway, overall, I think you've done a great job setting up an interesting story. I hope my reviews have been helpful, and best of luck with the rest of this novel. :)

Cheers,
cypress+

Author's Response: Hello Cypress!

Here it is - your long overdue and much deserved reply. I can't thank you enough for reviewing what I had posted of this story back in October, and I've used some of your suggestions in the huge backlog of chapters I started building up over the past few months.

Ambrosia does have a nickname - it was Sia - But I didn't use it in the earlier chapters because I wasn't sure I liked it. I use it now, and it'll be used in subsequent chapters.

I also replaced a lot of the clock shop pronouns - thank you for pointing that out, because I remember that when I went back to do it, it was hard for even me to follow! I haven't posted the edit yet, but it's on my to-do list.

Anyway, I'm starting to set up the plot more and more, and its slow, but I'm glad that the sisters seem similar for now. I have a plan for later that I'm hoping that initial resemblance will drive home, but I don't want to say too much now, in case I change my mind about some part of it.

Thank you again for your reviews, and I really enjoyed writing Luna in your challenge! Five Senses was a brilliant idea!

Best,
Warrior


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Review #2, by cypress The Bleeding Hippogriff

17th October 2013:
Hey there - just have a few more comments. I noticed in the last chapter and this one that you tell me what Ambrosia is feeling - elation, disappointment, shaken, thrilled - but one piece of writing advice that I really try and employ myself since I think it's a good one (as hard as it is to do!) is to show, not tell, emotions. Or show in addition to tell. I'd like to know what her body is doing, if her mind is racing, her palms are sweating, her heart is thundering in her chest, if her eyes widen, her mouth is dry, she swallows...I want to know what her hands are doing, how her face is changing, or is she struggling to keep it blank? You do this in some places - I recall a chill going up her back, I believe, in Chapter 4, but I think you can definitely do more of that to help create the atmosphere you want.

Also, I think it's interesting that you portray Sirius' parents and brother the way you do. I honestly would have imagined it the other way around, with Walburga being cold and uncompromising, and Regulus secretly sad, angry, and hurt that his brother left, only because Reg was the one to ultimately betray Voldemort later on, so his heart must not have been totally in it, or I suppose something must have changed along the way. I'm curious to see what you do with him.

cypress.

Author's Response: Regulus is really one of the hearts of this whole story. I love writing him, and I love his story - it's almost the reverse of a fall from grace. Walburga is far from static too - and I'm attempting to make it clear that she's upset about Sirius leaving, but that what she really mourns is what he's done to her reputation. I saw her and Druella as women proud to produce what they thought was a "perfect pureblood," to the point that their entire self-worth is based on that. I'm not sure how well that came through, so I may try to make it clearer.

Ah! It is such a hard piece of advice to follow. And in long pieces of writing, things like that get harder still. Thank you again for the CC, it's insightful and will be implemented!

Again, sorry for the crazily overdue responses.

Warrior


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Review #3, by cypress Blood

17th October 2013:
Hello, cypress again. Just dropping another comment as I'm thinking of it. First - I do think, if you have a chance, fixing the spacing by reposting the chapters will make everything a bit easier to read. But that's obviously very minor.

Mostly, I'm noticing as I read that the interraction between the sisters and mothers and cousins all seem so light. The flippant mentions of dark magic seem almost out of place, and I can't really put my finger on why. Maybe that's just because, in my own mind, dark arts have a very heavy connotation, not just amongst those who fear it, but amongst those who use it. It's more of a fear/repulsion vs. reverence of dark arts, but they're always treated with respect, and a great deal of emotion, whether it's disgust and disdain that the dark arts aren't taught at Hogwarts like at Durmstrang, or the ominous feelings that weigh down scenes between the "good" characters when the dark arts are discussed. I suppose it sort of surprises me that Regulus would speak about them so openly and petulantly - that dark wizards and witches are talked about like they are everyday alternatives to other types of witches and wizards. I think there's a sort of buzz of excitement that comes from contemplating participation in something so taboo. A thrill that comes from conspiring that I'm not seeing or feeling when I read. The adrenaline must be rushing at the thought rather than just naive giddiness. I don't know if I'm expressing myself well, and maybe things will get darker and reality will settle in, but thus far, Ambrosia seems to have a very unwitting view of what it means to be on the side of the Dark Lord, the risk she's taking, and I didn't see any real reaction to the mention of Azkaban either. I don't mean to criticize. I swear I'm not! And I'm not telling you to write this the way I would write it. I'm just pointing out the feeling that I'm getting from the way things are portrayed. If that's your intention, to have Ambrosia glorifying the dark arts without a real appreciation for what is happening and what she's walking into, then it's good! If the dark arts are meant to be treated with awe and reverence, then, it hasn't come across. Really, it just depends on what you intended whether you might want to take another look, and since I've only read through Chapter 3, so far, this may resolve itself or become clearer as the story goes on.

Anyway, onwards we go! :D

Cheers,
cypress

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Review #4, by cypress Reunion

17th October 2013:
Hello, hello! cypress here with your final couple of promised reviews. I know you asked for reviews on later chapters in this story, but I find it easier to review longer stories as I go, and as I think of things to say, so you'll be getting a few more than 2 reviews. ;) Granted, they won't be as in depth, but it's just easier for me to do that than to save up all my comments.

First, I love your opening line. "The dark, quiet suburb of Tatting Cross, though used to its fair share of rain, had scarce experienced the cascading sheets of water now slashing almost sideways through the air." (I think you meant scarcely, maybe, but thought you might have chosen the adjective form for rhythmic reasons. Either way, I know what you meant.) I think you have great use of adjectives - not to little and not too many. I think if you'd thrown in a few metaphors, just for the sake of flourish, it would have lost its impact. There is something elegant and very "Coco Chanel" about the way you write. What I mean is, Coco always used to say something to the effect of, after you've dressed, take off the last accessory you put on. Basically, don't overload the outfit. And a lot of writers end up overloading their sentences with too many accessories. :P You strike a lovely balance, and that first sentence is a perfect example.

As I started reading, I almost wondered - why Ambrosia? Not that there is something wrong with an OC, but her enthusiasm and thirst, the way she walks, the way you describer her as anything but normal, I could actually see a story starring Bellatrix, her mother greeting her with excitement from the kitchen, and Lucius Malfoy, and old friend of the family who has an eye on Bella's younger sister, being the one to indulge her.

Perhaps the reasons will clarify themselves as I read on. Just questions I'm coming up with as I read (and not at all meant as criticism!).

Looking forward to reading more, but it may take me a while to read through the rest of the story. I'm going to try and fit in little bits of this in between work projects, so we'll see how it goes. :)

Cheers,
cypress.

Author's Response: Hello Cypress!

I've gotten so much out of the comments of yours that I have read so far, and I appreciate your giving me such honest opinions! It's going to take me a little while to read and respond to all of your reviews, but I will definitely do so.

It's good to see that you enjoyed the description in the first chapter, and I confess I am flattered to be compared to Coco Chanel - One of the things I do try to remember in my writing is to let people paint some of the scene for themselves, as a teacher of mine once phrased it.

You're right about Ambrosia at this point as well. Her story was based on what I always thought Bellatrix's would be, and so it was easy and made sense to make them sisters. I chose not to write Bellatrix's story because I had an ending in mind, and it was radically different from where Bellatrix ended up. I wanted to weave my version of events through canon without changing too much of it, and that's where Ambrosia came from. ;)

I know this is a bit long for reviewing, so thank you again for taking the time!

- Warrior


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Review #5, by Lululuna Power and Adventure

1st July 2013:
Hello, I'm here for your review, and I'm so so sorry about the wait! :(

I'm so pleased to return to Ambrosia and her slightly creepy interactions and relationships, and this chapter was so exciting. I never thought Voldy could seem attractive or appealing to a woman, especially after he began his regime, but you wrote it so well and convincingly. The casual, girly conversations with Bella were so chilling in a way with the knowledge of what she will become: the girls gushing about the wedding and planning these ordinary things really situated them as normal young girls, which makes their ambitions and interest in the dark arts even more disturbing.

Another thing I really liked was the reference to other DE, like the details about Rosier. You have the perfect setup to really delve into the dynamics and structure of the DE themselves and the specific personality and details of minor characters, so I'd love to read more of that! :)

Ambrosia herself just seems so ordinary and likeable, and I feel like I'm starting to get a good read on her personality. Her fascination with Voldy was very chilling but written very well, and the intensity and her attraction to both his physical and powerful presence were great. I like the focus on his having blue eyes, which shows how his transformation into the terrifying being we know from the HP books is still in progress. That actually makes sense, since most likely being reborn isn't great for the appearance. One thing I would have liked is to read more of your lovely description, which I remember being so powerful in the first chapter. Balancing out the dialogue with description, like what Voldy looks like, even what Ambrosia looks like, and setting the scene in a sensory way would have improved an already awesome chapter for me. :)

This is such an original story, and I can't wait to see where you take it. I hope you re-request, and I'll do my best to be a bit faster in getting back next time! :)

Author's Response: Hello Again!

As always, it was a pleasure to read your review, and worth the wait! I'd like to apologize in turn for taking so long to respond. I never mean to fall off the face of the Earth for extended periods of time, but sometimes it happens anyway. ;)

I love coming up with ways to portray Ambrosia and Bellatrix as young and normal. I really do. I feel that that's exactly the way the Black sisters would have interacted before all of the myriad influences that made them into what they are finally started to take their toll, and it's awesome that it comes across as a bit disturbing, because it disturbs me too! I'm dying to get into their corruption (and with it, my plot!) in more detail, but I'm still very much in setup stage, and college means that I have to go slow. :/

I'm glad you liked the details of the minor Death Eaters too! I plan on giving a few of them very distinct personalities and stories, because they are close enough to the sisters to affect their lives. I like Rosier in particular, and have always wondered about him, not only because he chose death before Azkaban, but also because he wounded Mad-Eye Moody, and Merlin knows that's no small feat!

I went back and forth on Voldemort's eye color for a while. I know it's supposed to be brown, but I was hoping that blue would make the change to red starker, and it sounds like it does, so that was nicely vindicating to read about. :)

I appreciated your advice about sensory detail as a whole as well. I hadn't noticed that I was slipping away from it, but going back through my chapters I can see that you're right. I seem to have been getting impatient! Haha.

Anyway, thank you again for your wonderful feedback. I will re-request as soon as I can get myself together enough to edit the next chapter (Finished!) and I am glad as ever to hear that you enjoyed this chapter.

Best wishes,

- Warrior


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Review #6, by Lululuna Blood

21st April 2013:
Another strong chapter! I'm curious about what Regulus is up to, but I loved how his cousins covered for him to Walburga. The whole family dynamic between all of them is very interesting, though my two favourites are definitely still your take on Bellatrix and your character of Ambrosia.

I was a bit confused about whether Bellatrix is married yet, however. But I loved how she's like "hey, sis, let's talk about all these dark and twisted elements of your future... and want some tea?" The little details, like the English love for having tea, really humanizes them and makes the story that much better.

My own criticism is that the scene in which the sisters discuss Ambrosia's future with Voldy is a bit like re-hashing the scene from the previous chapter, and I didn't feel like anything new was brought to that section. However, it was immediately followed by the excellent outing to the Alleys which I found very fascinating, especially the part about Thestrals. I wonder how that will figure in later chapters?

In your request you asked about the consistency of the characterization. I think this is probably your strongest point so far, although I'd love to learn more about the characters' upbringing and childhoods. I definitely like them: despite the fact that they're dark witches, their eagerness and kindness -at least to each other- is very endearing, and it's great to have this alternate perspective on the likes of Bellatrix.

So overall, I think this is a really wonderful story that you should be proud of!!! This is all I really have time to review now, but please feel free to re-request the other chapters :)

Author's Response: Hello again!

I really love thestrals, and I wanted them to figure prominently in the story as symbols and just for my own enjoyment. :) I also enjoyed writing the shop, and all of the odds and ends within it. If the Wizarding world really existed, I think the first place I'd go would be Flourish and Blotts!

Maybe I'm a little too preoccupied with bridging my scenes together? I see what you mean about the duplication of the scenes, and maybe it could be avoided in future by skipping forward in time. Thank you for pointing that out, and please do let me know if it happens again.

What I really needed, as you mentioned, was a bit of input on the development of my characters, and you have certainly given me that. As for the characters' childhoods, I've never really though much about their lives before Hogwarts... though I think that now I will! :) I've definitely planned to put in a few stories about their time at school though, so maybe I ought to do it sooner rather than later.

Thank you again for all your opinions and advice!

-Warrior


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Review #7, by Lululuna Dinner and the Future

21st April 2013:
Hello, back to review the second chapter of your lovely and exciting story!

I'm really enjoying the domesticity of the Noble and Most Ancient... you get the idea. Besides the fact that many of their greatest ambitions are to be great and powerful, they come across as relatively youthful and ordinary, worrying about school and social life, which I think is what you're going for.

I really, really love how ordinary Bellatrix in particular is: I think it will make her transformation into the Bella of the HP books a lot more exciting and dramatic.

It was so funny how instead of being angry that her son has pictures of women exposing themselves, Walburga is mad that Sirius has Muggle pictures. Like, would it be better if the women were moving, Walburga? haha.

I enjoyed Bellatrix's story about duelling Travers to get the dark mark, but also how she wouldn't exactly tell Ambrosia what being a DE means in so many words. I wonder how Ambrosia would react if Bella just said "you have to torture and kill people" ? It shows the censorship and brainwashing that goes into it.

You've done an amazing job of portraying these girls like normal graduates eager to prove themselves, without truly realizing what they're getting themselves in to. This really is written so incredibly well, and I'm really enjoying the story!! :)

Author's Response: To answer for Walburga: Yes. Yes, it would, haha.

Thank you for a second lovely review, and an entertaining one at that!

As for the girls not knowing what they're getting into, I feel like there aren't a great many death eaters that really do... with the possible exception of the stereotypically bloodthirsty ones like Macnair. People can conceptualize violence without having ever seen it, and become desensitized to it that way. Voldemort, I think, would have used that to make sure that as few people as possible backed out, and coupled it with that "for the greater good" goal of subjugating Muggle-borns and chasing after power. Censorship with a purpose, as it were.

I plan to follow Bellatrix in particular especially closely; her transformation is definitely the most dramatic and tragic, and that's another reason why I've taken such pains to make the sisters seem as similar as possible, at least initially.

-Warrior


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Review #8, by Lululuna Reunion

21st April 2013:
Hi! Here for your requested review :)

Just by reading the first sentence I was completely blown away by the beautiful descriptions. The line: "cascading sheets of water now slashing almost sideways" caught my eye straight away, and I could picture the scene precisely! So well done, that's very tricky to write well. Your writing style is very wordy, but I think it more than works.

I was very intrigued by the characters you've set up here. First-Bellatrix. It's interesting to see her as being quite younger, and she doesn't come across as mad, more power-hungry and a little over-dramatic. I actually really like this, it would make sense that after a few years in Voldy's service and a decade in Azkaban that she would emerge the wild Bella we all know and love, but that she would have started out as being more normal. It's sweet that she actually seems to love her family, and what a close sister relationship she and Ambrosia share.

Also, it was great how Bellatrix was trying to recruit Ambrosia to the Death Eaters, and how she was talking them up like they're a sort of society club. I loved it!

Next-Ambrosia. She appeals to me a lot as a character, as she seems very relateable as a typical seventeen year old: full of ambitions, easily irritated, etc. Also, her thoughts and admiration of Voldy fit perfectly. Your descriptions actually made me understand the appeal of following him and his great power. I usually find the best way to really get into a character's head is through first person narration, but you've done an amazing job here at proving me wrong and giving insight into Ambrosia through third person, as well as giving her depth in this short chapter.

Oh! And I also found the name choice interesting. Ambrosia was a food of the god's that would heal people and sometimes bestow immortality, right? So it's interesting that immortality is what Voldy is seeking... anyway, I'm not sure if the name will have significance in your story or not, but I found that interesting!!

Anyway, amazing job here! I'll be back to review your next two chapters, definitely sooner rather than later. :)

Author's Response: Thank you so much for your review!

I'd like to start off by saying how very sorry I am that it took me so long to review. This semester's finals hit like a ton of bricks, and unfortunately my leisure writing and all that relates to it had to be forced, most unwillingly, onto the back burner.

That graveyard is my baby. I'm glad you noticed and enjoyed the descriptions! I definitely got carried away writing them, I was pleased with this great new idea I had for a story, and I wanted to set the scene appropriately. It has occurred to me that the descriptions are too wordy, but though I've edited them many times, I never took them out, and the positive responses I have received with regard to them make me glad of the decision. :)

My characters are the matter of greatest concern to me, and I was happy to see that you thought them relateable and especially, interesting! I have a pretty clear idea at this point of exactly how Bellatrix descended into madness, and why, and I'm glad that the power hungry and dramatic parts of her both come through, because I don't think she would have been so spectacularly insane without them.

Choosing the type of narration for this story was hard. I'm glad I do the third person justice, because I absolutely agree that first person will usually get you further into a character's head, and allow you to delve a little deeper into their emotions and thoughts. However, I also wanted the freedom to disagree with Ambrosia and to be objective where she isn't. I wanted the changes in her to be clear later on, and it struck me as a harder thing to do if I'm speaking through her.

One last thing! I was thrilled to read your comments on Ambrosia's name. I wasn't going to ever mention it in the story, but yes, there is absolutely a reason I chose it for her, and I felt that it fits both her personality and her life story on a few levels. I wasn't sure if anyone would pick up on it, but I was hoping for it, and it basically makes me want to jump around in place a few times and then implore you to read everything I've ever written. ;)

Thanks again for the superb attention to detail and robust commentary!

-Warrior


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Review #9, by Elaine M Seek Victory... and the Company of Purebloods

9th April 2013:
Please keep wrighting!!! Loving this fic!

Author's Response: Thank you so much! I'm happy to hear that you're enjoying it, and there's definitely more on the way!

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Review #10, by ShadowRose Blood

22nd March 2013:
ShadowRose again!

I like how you portrayed the mother/daughter relationship between Ambrosia and Druella as a little bit formal, because I've always kind of imagined many of the pureblood families to be much like that.

You alternate between saying "aunt Walburga" and just "Walburga." It might be better if you chose just one, to prevent any sort of confusion.

Once again, your descriptions are beautiful. I especially loved how you framed the exterior of Bellatrix's house, because it just created this perfect image in my mind.

This chapter, overall, is a little slow, but it's not necessarily a bad thing. More often than not, most stories start off this way. Plus, you already have the start of your plot framed, so it works that this chapter is a little uneventful.

I do also like that you finally showed Ambrosia's reasoning for wanting to join the Death Eaters, because before, it was a little ambiguous. She sounds very similar to Bellatrix, although I guess it makes a lot of sense considering they are extremely close to one another.

The thestral thing you inserted into the scene at Bourgin and Burke's is quite interesting. I really do hope you develop that, because thestrals are really never mentioned in fanfiction, and behavior that strange must have some meaning.

Feel free to re-request for any of your later chapters! This is a great story so far!

-ShadowRose

Author's Response: Hello again!

The formality of the average parent-child relationship in a pureblood family is pretty well-established in my perception as well, and Druella and Walburga, for whatever reason, seem as though they would be especially prone to it. I also intend to take your advice when it comes to my references to Walburga, as I read back through the chapter searching for them and realized that they are a bit awkward. Thanks for the tip! :)

If any chapter I've written of this story yet was slow, I knew it would probably be this one. It's good to know that you think it works though, and especially why! That sort of input is massively helpful.

Ambrosia is very similar to her sister in a lot of ways, and the differences between them don't really show or matter very much yet. I'm also glad to hear that the reason for Ambrosia's desire to join the Death Eaters wasn't lost in the rest of this chapter.

I'm glad that you liked the thestrals! I absolutely do plan to expand on their unusual behavior, and in fact I am quite looking forward to doing so.

I am so grateful that you took the time to review, and certainly happy that you like the story so far!

- Warrior


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Review #11, by ShadowRose Dinner and the Future

22nd March 2013:
ShadowRose again, with your requested review!

I like the conversations you create throughout this chapter, because they both focus on Dark magic and Death Eaters and things like that, but are still relatively light, because it's all between families. It's really interesting to see all of this from their perspective.

I think it's great that you included Sirius's mum, because you get to see her when she's not around Sirius, and she's a quite different person! Although I like how she complains about him, it just kind of reminds the reader that all the other Marauder stuff is going on at the same time as all of this.

I like the dynamic between Bellatrix and Ambrosia, which you started last chapter and are continuing into this one. They seem very close and share the same ideals.

Some of the spacing in this chapter is uneven, where some breaks between paragraphs are longer than others, and it's a little jarring to the eyes.

I like how you include bits of canon story, so even though this fourth sister is a bit of a departure from canon, it's still highly relatable.

I really like that she's wanting to join the Death Eaters, because there are just so many possibilities that can come from that plot point! I'm excited to see where you go with it.

Overall, this a great second chapter.

-ShadowRose

Author's Response: Hi ShadowRose!

I'm really glad to hear that the conversation didn't come off as heavy. We so often see just the deathly serious side of the non-Sirius members of the Black family (Odd as that sounds), and it's been nice to imagine how things might have gone at a lighthearted event like a graduation dinner.

On a different though related subject, I've never been able to see why Kreacher would accuse Sirius of breaking his mother's heart if someone in the family didn't believe it had happened! I'm trying to contrast Walburga's younger self with her portrait in Grimmauld Place a bit, because I definitely don't see how a woman who is supposed to be an upstanding pureblood lady and mother to Regulus could have held it all together if she was in anything like the sort of mental state we see in that portrait. I feel like Sirius's estrangement could have broken something in her, even if it wasn't entirely because of her affection for him, so I tried to imagine Walburga before that happened.

Spacing is an issue for my computer and I and has been for quite a while. I might try switching to the simple editor upon posting and see if that resolves the issue, and I definitely appreciate you mentioning it. The unevenness is probably the result of me trying to bring the paragraphs closer together and missing a few. :)

Hearing that the bits of canon that I have included are noticeable is quite satisfying as well. I've tried to structure my plot so that this could have happened at the same time as everything canon, but its nature is pretty AU, so I've tried to strike a balance. :)

Many thanks for your review!

-Warrior


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Review #12, by patronus_charm Dinner and the Future

22nd March 2013:
Hello there Iím here with your requested review!

I liked the family scene you set up at the beginning of this chapter, it was nice to get learn more about the family dynamics of the Blacks as theyíre such an interesting family. Even though it was only a brief mention I thought it was interesting that the girlís mother put so much emphasis on their education and how she was angry about them failing. It seemed different to the social norms but I rather liked it.

The spacing in between the paragraphs is a little off putting due to how big they are, so perhaps if you minimised the space it will make reading it easier?

I really liked how you included canon things such as Regulus being a seeker, and the banners in Siriusí room it just makes the story more realistic, and believable. It also helps the reader relate to it more if they can recognise something without them being thrown in at the deep end.

I liked the use of ellipses at first, but then I found it used about three times in one paragraph. Itís quite a powerful piece of punctuation and it should only be used moderately, because otherwise it loses itís impact, so perhaps if you toned down your usage of it, it would have more force?

The plot was a little slow to begin with as it was just the family conversing, but it seemed to pick up pace when Ambrosia and Bella started talking to each other. It was rather interesting that she wanted to become one, as Iíve never read an OC wanting to become one before. Perhaps if you include more reasons why she wanted to become one it would be more reasonable, because all Iíve known about her views so far is that she supports them, but she didnít agree with them so much to join.

I liked the ending with Bella showing her mark, it seemed to show that they had a strong bond with one another as I doubt you would show it with most people. Itís rather nice to see Bella being friendly to people.

I thought it was an interesting chapter, and I can see that this is heading in an interesting direction!

-Kiana :D

Author's Response: Nice to hear from you again Kiana!

I thought the idea that prioritizing education for pureblood witches might be contrary to social norms was interesting, but I could understand how it might be. I've always felt that for the pureblood families, being competent in magical skills would be a status symbol for witches as much as wizards. I based Druella's indignation on Lucius Malfoy's disgust upon hearing that his son's grades were worse than Hermione's. If Narcissa fails Herbology, then surely there's a Muggle-Born somewhere that did better, and that is simply not acceptable.

I am pleased to say that although it wasn't an easy thing to do (my computer doesn't enjoy readability, for whatever reason), I have finally been able to fix my spacing issues! If you review for me again, the problem should be nonexistent! :) As far as the use of ellipsis, I appreciate your input and I will skim the chapter and see where I might be able to replace ellipsis with hyphens, because I am in the habit of using it to indicate pauses in sentences during dialogue.

I definitely appreciate your comments on the speed of my plot. As I've mentioned, it's the thing I am most concerned about in this story, particularly over the course of multiple chapters.

As for Ambrosia's desire to join the Death Eaters, I would say that for her, it has to do with more than just her support for pureblood causes, and I do address the reasons for it more in future chapters. However, I definitely want to know if the lack of information about them now detracts from the story or from Ambrosia's character!

Thanks a bunch for reviewing this chapter for me!

-Warrior


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Review #13, by ShadowRose Reunion

17th March 2013:
Hi there, it's ShadowRose from the forums, with your requested review!

I absolutely adore the descriptions in this chapter. As Ambrosia walks to the house, you can just picture everything so clearly, and it really plays up the mysterious tone. The area sounds just like somewhere that Bellatrix and the others would live - worn-down and abandoned, fallen from glory.

Speaking of Bellatrix, I love what you've done with her character. As you said, she's nicer since she's in the presence of her family, and you do a good job or portraying that, but also holding onto Bellatrix's maniacal and obsessive love of the Dark Lord, which is made perfectly clear in the way she speaks of him.

Obviously we haven't really gotten to know Ambrosia yet, but she seems like an interesting character to begin with: part of the Black family and Death-Eaters-to-be, but a little bit skeptical of the whole thing too.

It might help the flow of the chapter if you change the spacing so that everything is a little closer together, and easier on the eyes. The giant gaps can be a little straining, especially if the paragraph is only a line or so long.

Also, the ending seemed a little abrupt, and kind of out of nowhere. Maybe you could come up with some sort of closing paragraph to kind of wrap it up?

Overall, this story looks extremely promising!

-ShadowRose

Author's Response: Hi Shadowrose,

Thank you for reviewing for me! I have to say I had a great deal of fun with the opening scene for this chapter - I first wrote it a long time ago, but the decrepit street by the graveyard, draped in ivy, has never changed in my head, and I'm glad that my description of it seems appropriate!

I love Bellatrix's character and always have. I can't imagine Bellatrix without that maniacal and obsessive love, as you so aptly describe it. I have done my best to include that part of Bellatrix wherever I can when I write her, because the Dark Lord is very much the center of her world. I look forward, as well, to contrasting the nicer side of Bellatrix with the side of her that comes out to fulfill her Master's more violent wishes. I haven't quite decided how Ambrosia is going to feel about that yet!

Anyway, I'm glad you found Ambrosia interesting - I certainly intend for her story to be a unique one, and she needs some elements in her personality that most Blacks don't usually show in order to make that happen.

I am also very glad that you pointed out the abruptness of the ending! This chapter and my second one used to be fused, but the end result was long and unwieldy, so I made the decision to divide that old version of chapter one. I've been wondering for a while now if perhaps that decision was a bad one. I don't think I'll end up reuniting them, but I will definitely look again at the end of this chapter and see if I can make it smoother somehow. The spacing is revised as I write this reply, and I hope that that will make for an easier read.

Thank you again for all of your comments, and I am very glad you enjoyed it! :)

-Warrior


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Review #14, by patronus_charm Reunion

13th March 2013:
Hello there! Iím here with your requested review!

I really liked your opening description, as you painted a really dark and gothic scene, and you could just imagine the state of decay this neighbourhood was in, and it was really powerful imagery. One thing I did notice about it was that the paragraphs, and several others, were on the larger side, and that made it harder to follow, so perhaps if you cut down the size of them, it would make easier reading.

Another thing about the spacing. I found that the gaps between the paragraphs were on the larger side as well, and that detracted from the flow a little, so if you cut down the size in between them, it would look better.

It was nice to see a warmer side to Bellatrix, as I think thatís how she would have acted around her siblings before the war, and it was nice to see that was reflected here. I noticed she used the word ĎMumí, this is just my personal opinion so feel free to ignore it, but I would have thought that the pureblood families, especially the Blacks, would have used more formal language, and she would have said ĎMotherí instead.

I liked how you tied the canon things in about Regulus, as I always did wonder how he became a death eater, so it was nice to see it in more context here.

I quite liked Ambrosiaís characterisation, as she seemed to be different to the other Blacks, as she seemed to hold some of the dark lordís views in disdain, and felt that they werenít going to happen. You asked if her characterisation was consistent, and I felt it was throughout the chapter, and she seemed to hold the same traits.

I think that your writing style seemed developed and sophisticated, I canít compare to how it was before, but I liked it. I think the only way to improve it is to work on the spacing, so the level of it isnít lost due to the flow jilting at times.

I think your characters seemed interesting, and as I said before, I really like what you've done with Bellatrix, as it would be interesting to see whether her kindess changes at all.

-Kiana :D

Author's Response: Thank you so much for such a useful review!

I've fixed the spacing in this chapter and some others as well, and I have to say thanks for mentioning it, because I hadn't realized it was that far off! I also agree with you completely about the formality of the Black's speech, and that is a suggestion I will definitely take.

Regulus is actually my favorite character in this story aside from my lead. I've always been fascinated by him too, and I see him as the joker on the outside, not unlike Sirius, but I also think he had a sense of responsibility/duty to family that Sirius never showed.

I'm glad you liked Ambrosia! That disdain is going to be very important to her later on, and it sounds like it comes through early, which is great. As for Bellatrix, she was the one I was most worried about, so it was definitely good to hear that you enjoyed her characterization.

Thanks again,

-W


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