Sorry it's taken so long for this review! August has been a pretty crazy month for me as well as i'm trying to get my worker visa completed so i can move.
So, I really love Lily/James and so i enjoyed this on a basic storytelling level where it was just a cute story to read. You characterized both Lily and James well too i think. I especially liked how the problems they had didn't just disappear when they were married but they still fought a bit and what not. It made the story feel real and alive.
This was written in chronological order and even if it had flashbacks, i wouldn't count that as the story jumping back and forth. It seemed more like a reflection from Lily. Anyway, it didn't disrupt the flow at all for me and i think you put them in really seamlessly. I really don't like flashbacks as they never seem to fit with the story but i felt like how you've written it it seems like its woven into the seams of your work. So great job with that.
I also really liked how this just captured some of the most important moments of Lily and James' life together. Particularly, i liked how they ended up marrying. I liked how she was pregnant first and then they got engaged. It seems like most people write it like they were married and then had the child. However, that always bothered me a little as i've always just seen them as being so young and i've always liked the idea that Harry might have been a bit of a surprise/mistake. Anyway, i thought you did a good of doing that and just showing this as as real relationship and not some fairytale.
The ending really startled me as i didn't really feel like it ended at all. It just sort of stopped and i think that really took away from the piece itself as it made me fall out of the story without really getting the emotional impact as i should have. I feel like you should have had something that that wraps up the story or has some sort of closure. I don't mean something that says they lived happily ever after for a time because they had each other but something that has a more key end. Whether that be a snappy one-liner or an added paragraph that gives their life more depth- just something more would probably add to this story.
I also felt like this could have had a little more description. It was mostly okay but i think that sometimes i felt like i wanted to know about the setting or the smell of a place or simply the actions of the characters. When Lily tells James she's pregnant for example, there was a lot of dialogue but what were they doing in those moment? Where there hands flapping around? Where they holding each other? Interweave description like that with the dialogue so that we can see what's happening.
This was lovely though and i'm glad you requested it from me and i hope you found this helpful! (oh and i really liked your choice of present tense here, i forgot to mention it above but it made me feel more present while reading this). :DAuthor's Response: I am so, so sorry for the epically late response. D: August has been so busy for me, so apologies for the delay.
I'm glad you liked the story in terms of its storytelling. Ha, of course couples would still have arguments -- most married couples do yell at each other, so yeah, I wanted that to be realistic.
Yayay to the flashbacks not being sudden or anything! I was very worried about that, I must say, so it's great to know you liked it despite not usually liking flashbacks and non-linear stuff.
Lolol, I actually don't believe in sex before marriage, myself, but that doesn't mean premarital sex doesn't happen in the world, or something, haha. I also like the idea of Harry being an accident, because I doubt Lily and James would've planned the pregnancy, not when they were fighting for the Order.
Okay, I get that people have had issues with the ending :-/ I was thinking of expanding it, and I may, one day, but I'm still not sure exactly how I would end it, so I'll have to see. Maybe I'll try to think of a snappy one-liner; I totally get where you were coming from with that one.
And, ha, I do get told a lot that I don't use enough description. I am trying to work on that, promise. I understand how description adds to things, and I will definitely work on that in teh future, so ta for the tip.
Thank you very much for the review. I am really glad you liked the use of present tense and that you enjoyed it -- apologies for the uber late response. D: Report Review
Here I am with your requested review! :)
I'm going to tell you now, there won't be a whole lot of constructive criticism, if any at all.
I must say, I was pulled in from the first sentence, and it lasted until the last word. Especially the last scene, as was probably to be expected. :P
Your concerns that you told me about were:
-Flow: I think the flow was fine. I was never confused about what was happening. It "flew" perfectly.
-Characterization: That was fine. Obviously after James and Lily left Hogwarts things were tougher so James and the other Marauders weren't as light-hearted and fun-spirited, but I think you did mention that they were those things during school. And you mentioned several times that "Lily was berating" James, or Sirius, even, when they came to visit James in the hospital.
-Plot/style: They were great. The plot was original and not cliched. The style was great. You could tell Lily and James just wanted to be light-hearted and fun, but the war was not letting them do so.
That's all I've really got to say. :)Author's Response: Hiya ;)
I'm glad you liked this! It's lovely to know that you were grabbed by the first sentence -- I always have trouble with them, lol. And YAY to you liking the last scene!
Thank you for saying it flowed fine and that you weren't confused -- some did find it confusing, so it's nice to know you didn't :) And yay to the characterisation being okay. Ha, I know, Lily was giving James a hard time at points, but hopefully you understood why.
I'm so glad you didn't find this story cliched! James/Lily often is cliched, sadly, but it's lovely to know you didn't think so :)
Ta for the review!
~Soraya~ Report Review
Trouble with the style, my Godric! :p This was an absolutely beautiful piece, and don't you dare say otherwise! I loved it. All of it. From the beginning, with Lily recalling her first time, from the hospital scenes - everything! You also almost gave me a heart-attack too, you know, when Harry wasn't breathing for a moment. I found it totally ironic, same as Lily, seeing as she was saying that she was his 'protector' and everything. I thought that this was a bittersweet glimpse into their lives before Voldemort murdered them at Godric's Hollow, and I loved how you made everything not perfect, strange as it sounds - their situation surrounding their first time, their arguments, just... wow. Gah. I'm speechless, seriously.
It definitely flowed well, mind you ;) It was perfect - all of it. An absolutely lovely read, which I completely and utterly adored. Well done :) Thanks for requesting, feel free to re-request on another story, and speaking of which, good luck on all of your other stories! If they're as good as this one, then I have no doubt that they are as fantastic, too :)
--LinnAuthor's Response: Hahaha, thank you so much! I'm really flattered that you liked it so much that you could call it beautiful :) (I can see a lot of flaws in this story, myself, but thank you anyway!)
And lol, it was kind of my intention to make the moment later on a very much EEP moment, as someone else said, because I do think something like that could have happened.
It was very much intended to be imperfect; first times in literature are always SO overrated, when, really, I know (not from experience, lol) that it's never easy the first time, at least for a girl. Also, a couple are bound to have arguments, so I wanted to convey how things were far from simple between James and Lily, even before they were married.
I'm so pleased you liked it! I have another story in the queue which isn't very good (it's James/Sirius, so I'm not sure you're into that...) but I'll probably stop by your thread if you are. Thank you very much for the review -- I swear my head is just inflating to ten times the size atm :D
~Soraya~ Report Review
So I am finally here with your review and I apologize for taking so long to get around to reviewing this for you.
This piece was wonderful. It had that haunting beauty to it that makes you feel ever single emotion that the characters are feeling and then some. You get the sense of who James and Lily are before their death and how they interact with their son. It's cruel, full of irony and makes me really think.
Your style of writing is one of my favorites! You just have this way of capturing my mind and taking it the full mile. I can always expect the unexpected and to feel emotions that other pieces of writing lack. I wish I could write as well as you do because it is truly breath taking.
This story works well even if it isn't written in chronological order. It gives you all of these different insights into Lily, James and Harry. I also want to say kudos to you for how you handled Harry and when he stopped breathing. I had an experience like this with one of my children and it brought back all those emotions and fears. So I could really relate with this part. (My child ended up being okay though too) The flow of this story is wonderful. It's not messy at all.
Keep up the sublime writing! You are an inspiring writer and I look forward to reading more of your work! =)
-SR17Author's Response: Hiya :) No worries about taking a while -- I usually take a while to respond too, lol.
I'm really glad you enjoyed this! It means so much to me that you liked the emotions and the style :) Even though I completely disagree with you re style (lol, I had so much trouble writing this and am still not 100% happy with it), it means so much to me that you called it breathtaking (especially considering what happens to Harry...).
:O at you having a similar experience :( In my first OF novel, this does actually come up, kind of. I'm glad your child was okay in the end -- and in a weird way, it reassures me to know that I did things somewhat accurately considering I'm only sixteen and haven't got any kids or anything, lol.
I'm really flattered by all your comments :D It means so much for me to hear that you think I'm an inspiring writer, since, like I said, I'm still in my teens and definitely still developing as a writer, so thank you very much, even though I don't deserve any of this praise :D
~Soraya~ Report Review
Hi it's Aether here from the forums. This one-shot is absolutely beautifully written. I love the flow of it, and I think you do a great job of characterizing Lily. Your level of detail and pace is perfect, and you had me from the beginning until the end.
I really don't have too many critical things to say, which is rare for me, so kudos on that. Hah, hah. On your 'areas of concern' section, you said that this story wasn't chronological, but I didn't notice that it jumped forward and back in time ever. Did you change it, or did I completely miss that?
You really capture the characters and emotions very well, and the flow is excellent. However, the end felt a bit underwhelming to me. I was worried about Harry, but I knew he wouldn't die. Maybe I was expecting to see the very end, when Voldemort casts the final curse. I felt a bit like 'this isn't over' at the end.
Though, I guess you were original in not ending with Voldemort. It was a bold move, and I can see that it shifted the focus to James, Lily and Harry as a family, rather than Voldemort as a villain.
Nice job! Easily a 10/10.
AetherAuthor's Response: Hello :)
Thank you for the review! I'm so glad you liked the flow and my characterisation of Lily. It's lovely to know that you thought the pace and details were good, too.
I had two flashbacks in the story -- when Lily remembers about her first time having sex with James and then the night when Harry was conceived and they had forgotten to cast the contraceptive charm. Haha, if you missed it, it's a good thing, lol, because it wasn't confusing :)
I see what you mean about the ending. I had a lot of issues with it, and I understand that it was a bit underwhelming. But, ha, I didn't want to do the whole Voldemort thing, either, as that would be dipping into dangerous waters of cliche. However, I did intend for it to be "this isn't over" -- the whole story is about James and Lily's rocky relationship and the struggles they had in their family life, so it wasn't about having a happy ending as such.
I'm really flattered that you liked it! Ta for the review and have a lovely day :D
~Soraya~ Report Review
Hey there, marissa lily potter here with your review.
Let me congratulate you on this story. It was unlike anything I've read before. It was unique and well written. I didn't notice any grammatical errors so kudos on that too!
Anyway, I was a little confused at times. Differentiating between the past and present was difficult and as a reader, I had to read parts of it multiple times in order to understand what was going on. I don't know whether you wanted it to be confusing on purpose, but that's the impression I got while reading it.
The flow of it was alright though. You cut it up into different scenes which flowed together as individuals but when you put all the scenes together to make one story, the flow wasn't as great as it could have been. I felt as though you were lacking in transitions. The scenes were all very well written, but a transition between them would have been nice. Something to connect them to one another, y'know?
Besides that, I think the descriptions were great and so were the characterizations. I like how you developed James and Lily in a short period of time. Well done!
-marissa lily potterAuthor's Response: Hiya ;) Thanks for reviewing.
I had two excellent betas for this, hence why there weren't any grammar mistakes -- thank you :) Eeep, I realise things might've been confusing, but I wanted to try a flashback without italics and see how well it worked D: Sorry about the confusion. I did try my best to make things clear -- I guess I'll just have to try harder.
I agree about the transitions, too -- the gap between the second to last scene and the last one in particular. I may actually add a scene in there at some point later; it's been commented on by others, so I will definitely bear that in mind. Ta lots :)
I'm glad you enjoyed it. Thank you for the review, and apologies for the slightly late response! Report Review
Aw! This is so fantastic!
I really LOVE how you split the story into six parts. At first, I was a bit confused on what was happening but from then on everything was just clear.
I think you did a really good job with captivating the characters of James and Lily. I like the bit where they fought, many authors forget that James and Lily don't have a perfect relationship and they write them as the happiest couple ever. But like your story had, I'm pretty sure they had bumps here and there. Though, I'm just happy that everything still worked out in the end.
The ending shocked me a bit and I actually held my breath without realising. I kept wishing for baby Harry to breathe and then when I read that line where he was crying, relief just washed over me.
Ah, the things a James/Lily one-shot can do to you. Anyway, I thought you did a really good job with the story! Keep up the great work!
Slytherin For The House Cup 2012,
Izzy xxAuthor's Response: I'm so glad you liked it :) Yeah, at the beginning, it might have been a bit confusing, so I'm glad things cleared up eventually.
I really don't like it when people have James and Lily as the happiest couple in the world, when the truth is they're not going to be like that. No couple is ever truly perfect, imo, hence why I included their fights and everything. And, ha, they didn't quite work out in the end -- James and Lily both die, so it's not exactly a happy ending, lol.
That is so cool, that you held your breath at the ending :D I did intend for it to be a bit of a shock, so I'm glad it worked.
Thank you for the review, and I'm very pleased and flattered that you enjoyed it :)
~Soraya~ Report Review
Hi there! VioletBlade here with your requested review! :)
Well, it's no secret I'm a lover of James/Lily so I was actually really excited to read this! And I wasn't disappointed! It was actually really very interesting to me, since it's definitely not the usual James/Lily story you get on the archives!
Honestly, I really admire the style of this story. The flow is a little bit disrupted from the time Lily tells James she's pregnant with Harry, as the gap is about 9 months, but it's not too bothersome in its entirety. I did feel a little confused about why the particular scene with Harry almost dying was the end of the story, however. I felt as if it were just a bit incomplete at the end of it. I felt it would have been a much smoother ending if it had perhaps ended with Harry's birth? But that's just my opinion. The flashbacks work just fine, I was able to follow along with them perfectly! :) Overall, I definitely thinks it works as a piece, though!
I actually really like how you've portrayed James and Lily here. In most stories, it's that she hates him until she realizes he's actually changed and all that business and falls madly in love with him. Yet in your story you've made it so that they still have problems with bickering well into their relationships. They still have their character flaws like Lily's hotheadedness, James' arrogance, etc. so that's what really makes this piece truly great! I love that I think the most about this story, as weird as that sounds! :P
There wasn't anything too bad, but I just found one thing you might want to check! :)
"Things never have been simple when it comes to her and James." In this sentence, 'comes' should just be 'come'. :)
Well, that about does it from my end! Thank you so much for requesting from me! It was a great read! :)
~VioletBladeAuthor's Response: YAY, another James/Lily shipper :) Well, actually, I like shipping both of them with other people (like Sirius/James, Remus/James and Lily/Remus), but I do love them as a pairing, too. It's nice to hear that you thought it was original and unlike most of the stories you find at HPFF -- that means a lot :)
Yes, ha, the jump between Lily finding out she's pregnant and Harry being however many months old at the end is rather large, but I was trying to finish this story, and in a rush, so I couldn't include an extra scene. I would have liked to include Harry's birth, but I definitely wanted to have the scene afterwards where Lily almost kills Harry because I think that's a really important character moment for Lily, so I'm glad you liked it as a piece, at least :)
I'm so glad you liked the characterisation. Haha, Lily hating James is my pet peeve -- I'd much rather have them bickering and then having sex to make up for it, lol.
Thank you for the nitpick, but it should be "comes", actually, because the subject, "it", is singular and the verb, "comes", is therefore plural.
Ta for the review :)
~Soraya~ Report Review
Can you say, AMAZING STORY! I absolutely LOVE James/Lily fanfics, and this one only added on to that. Your writing skill is astounding, and your use of description carves out the perfect image in my head.
I love the scene where they are making love in the hospital wing for the first time. I once read, "It doesn't matter where you are, only who you're with," and that is so true. Especially when reading this, I'm reminded that it only matters who you're with. James and Lily love each other, and that's all that matters. HOW CUTE :3
I love how you timed all the different events and made them all lead up to the end. It was so creative and I love it. Don't stop writing, and let me know once you post more stories. This one is definitely going into my favorites! xxAuthor's Response: Hiya! Eeeep, sorry for replying so late. RL has been hectic atm, so apologies.
I'm so glad you liked the description and my writing style :) And the part in the hospital wing -- well, I think first times are overrated. It's usually painful at least on the girl's part for her first time, so I wanted to be realistic. And I agree -- even though it's not in a particularly romantic setting, it's still meaningful.
And I'm really glad you liked how I timed things and paced the story. That was a big concern for me, so I'm relieved it didn't come across as too laboured.
If you'd like to read more by me, by all means do click on my author page and take a look -- or, better still, check out my MNFF author page (I'm xxbabewithbrainsxx on there), where I've written more, with a wider variety of ships, including Albus/Rose and Louis/Lily, if that's your thing :) Ta for the review!
~Soraya~ Report Review
I LOVED this one shot.
I know you said you were unsure about it, but I really truly think that you did a brilliant job.
I ship James/Lily so hard that sometimes it hurts, and your one shot was something that fed my addiction. Their story here was powerful, and connected a lot of the important moments in their lives.
To me, this one shot was like a collaboration of a lot of the most important moments of their love, their lives. It was like a glimpse into the people they used to be and how they got to where they were, and I really liked that about it.
And wow. The ending. I can honestly say that that wasn't what I was expecting, not by a long shot. However, it's not completely unlikely either. And the panic Lily was feeling helped to express some of the love she had for her son.
I really enjoyed this one shot! Marvelous job!
~CassieAuthor's Response: I'm so glad you liked it! I love James/Lily, though I ship both of them with other people too -- at the moment, my favourites are James/Sirius, James/Remus and one-sided Remus/Lily -- so it's lovely to hear that you liked it so much :)
Yes, there were a lot of important moments in their lives in this one-shot. I do think I missed a couple out (namely, the birth of Harry, plus their wedding), but that was more because I was writing this for a deadline than anything. At any rate, I'm glad you liked what I did with their characters.
Haha, the ending was the only part of the story that I could write easily because I knew exactly what was going to happen. I was actually expanding a drabble that I had written months ago, so that was the only bit, for me, that was clear-cut in my head. The prompt for the drabble was a character's worst fear, and for James AND Lily, their worst fear was, of course, that Harry would die, so it was interesting to play around with that, especially with Lily being so desperate to protect her son that she almost hugged him to death.
Anyway, thank you for the review! Much appreciated :D
~Soraya~ Report Review
Hey! Perelandra here with your requested review.
Your story seriously sucked me right in. I usually open two windows: one with the story, the other with the review box in view so I can switch between the two. With your story, however, I could not stop reading. I really thought you were going to kill off Harry! :( Poor thing!
Your narrative was fantastic. Despite the fact that there was little description (setting, imagery...etc...), the way you worded your story it was brilliant. I have nothing but good things to say about your fic.
I know its not much of a CC but I seriously have none! :)
Thanks for requesting a review for this beautiful yet bittersweet story!
--PerelandraAuthor's Response: Hello!
I'm so glad you liked this! And, ha, that is a lovely compliment, that you couldn't stop reading. I think it needs a bit of fixing still, personally, but I'm really pleased that you enjoyed it.
It's nice to know you liked teh narrative, and of course I wasn't going to kill off Harry! As a friend of mine told me, if I did that, then it would be Ernie Macmillan and the Philosopher's Stone, lol.
Anyway, ta for the lovely review :) Report Review
It's Roots in Water here with your review! Sorry for taking so long to actually write it.
To begin, I found this to be a very interesting piece. I've always liked James and Lily as a couple, though I haven't read too many stories with them as the main characters, and I think that you've done a good job of writing their relationship in the midst of a war. From the way they were described in the books, both having confident personalities, their little squabbles in this story only made their relationship more realistic. Furthermore, you balanced these arguments with quiet shows of compassion that truly showed their affection for each other. Very well done there!
However, I was a little surprised that your story ended when it did. Perhaps I haven't taken enough time to analyze the ending (sorry if there was something you were hoping to convey with the ending) but I was expecting an ending more along the lines of "But in the end it was all worth it, because she had James, she had Harry and she had their friends. And they were going to survive" - something to reflect on or remind us of her thoughts at the beginning of the story.
I think that you've done a good job with their characterization, something that goes hand in hand with their relationship. In particular, I like how you made the effects of the war evident in their lives without making it the focus of the story. Their argument about everything and nothing in particular was very well done. As well, I liked how you made Lily's protectiveness evident. The line "Even if I have to die for you, I'll keep you safe" was nicely placed - I liked the foreshadowing! And I definitely wasn't expecting her to almost kill Harry with her mothering - that was a good twist to keep on with your plot.
As for the style of this piece, I think that you did a great job of exploring the different sides of difficulty and pain. Nothing about their relationship is the typical fairy-tale romance but they love each other and that's what makes their lives worth living. However, (and this is my personal opinion on a topic I'm not overly familiar with), for some reason, since you arranged this story into scenes, I was expecting the parts to be more separated, if that makes sense. With the way you wrote this story, the scenes flowed really smoothly from one to the next, without any large amounts of time passing between them. I thought that your scenes would be more spaced out, picking from a wider range of difficulties. On the other hand, you did include flashbacks, which provide the time gaps I was expecting.
All in all, I think that you did a great job with this story. The sentences and paragraphs flowed smoothly from one to the next and you really captured the personalities of Lily and James. Thanks for requesting and I hope my comments were helpful!Author's Response: Hello!
Thank you for the review. Hmm, it's interesting that you haven't read many James/Lily fics before, because it's probably the most mainstream pairing in the fandom (except Harry/Ginny and Romione, I suppose). And, ha, I'm glad you liked their squabbles and everything. They are far from the perfect couple, but they are also a sweet one, haha.
Oh, the ending gave me grief. Originally, I wasn't even going to show Harry breathing, but my beta said it sounded a bit incomplete like that, so I added the extra bit. Hmm, I might have to revisit that, so thanks a lot. :)
Lol, foreshadowing is something I usually do subconsciously, but yes, that one was intentional. I'm glad you liked that.
I have no idea why I separated the scenes like that, actually. Basically, I thought it would be too-- choppy to have them with just page breaks. Also, like you said, I had the flashbacks, so yeah.
I'm glad you enjoyed it -- thank you for the review!
~Soraya~ Report Review
Hello there! This is DarkRose from the forums here to review for you! :D So, let's go over things:
Characterization: All right, we have Lily and James in this majorly. And they're both great! Yayyy! I loved that Lily was more calculating and worrisome than James, but it was still obvious that she was young and a little naive. I also liked that James was far from perfect. He definitely still messed up, but he was quickly morphing into a good dad. That was cool to watch.
Descriptions: I always tell people about this, but it's much less applicable to you--if you want to bring readers into the story, tell them how things look. But not just that. Tell them how things smell, sound, feel, etc. It will bring everything to life. At many points in this story you described things beautifully. I don't think you really need to worry about this point, but I'll mention it anyway in case you'd like to add more. :]
Emotions: I loved how much I could feel everyone's emotions in this, especially Lily's. I got her fear when James was hurt. I got her anger when they were arguing, and her passion when they made up. I got her fear and guilt when Harry was hurt. It was great. I could feel it all. Wonderfully done.
Plot: This was a truly beautiful story. I think I may even favorite it! It was sweet, but it was still ridden with implications from the war. James and Lily weren't perfect, but they were in love, and that was enough. And I think you told the story well. It was great. :D
Interactions: I loved every moment between James and Lily. The flashbacks of their first kiss and all were perfect. I'm definitely one to believe that they belong together. You brought their relationship to life. Great job.
Flow: You were worried about the "nonlinearity" of this story...but I don't think that's the term you were looking for. This story WAS chronological, it just skipped parts between the scenes. For me, it flowed fine. I could follow everything, and the parts in between that were left out weren't important. I think you handled this style well.
Great job! I think you definitely wrote a very nice story here. It's rare for me to favorite stories, but I'm going to favorite this one. :]
--EmilyAuthor's Response: Hiya ;)
Thank you for your review! Firstly, I'm glad you liked my characterisation of James and Lily, particularly James being "messed up", lolol. As a pairing, I do like them, but I also love shipping them with other people, so I wasn't sure I'd still be able to achieve the same chemistry between them. I hope I have.
I think you've mentioned description in a previous review, and I'm glad that's improved somewhat :) And I'm flattered you thought it was beautiful.
YAY to nailing the emotions! I'll admit that this was very painful to write, and I myself got quite emotional (but for different reasons -- much more because I had a deadline and I didn't think I could stick to it), so it's nice to know you felt the emotions too.
Yay, thank you for favouriting it :) I think it's a cliche to think that any couple are perfect -- everyone has their ups and downs, I think, especially James and Lily during the war.
I'm glad you didn't find it confusing in terms of its structure and how it went back and forth between time. It's good to know that it flowed fine to you!
thank you for the review -- much appreciated.
~Soraya~ Report Review
Hey, this is Shlesha from HPFF Forums to review this one-shot! :)
Well, the plot/idea was really good, and so was characterization! I love how you started the story, and how you ended it. The only thing that confused me was the tense in the beginning. I know that the past was the flashbacks and such, but the transition from present to past in the first scene was slightly choppy, which took away from the flow. Everything after the second scene was amazing though! I really enjoyed reading it, I did! You have an excellent writing style. I'm glad I read this! I love how you formatted this like a Shakespearean play as well. Great job, keep it up! :)Author's Response: Hi there,
Thank you for your review. I'm glad you liked the plot, the characterisation and the way I began and ended the story.
Eeeep, choppiness, choppiness. I know; it can be a bit confusing, but I hoped the use of the pluperfect would help with that. I think it doesn't help much, lol, that I had them in hospital beds both times, hahahaha. I think I should change that...
I'm really pleased you enjoyed it. And, ha, I didn't really notice that I divided the story into acts -- it must have been a self-conscious thing, lol. Anyway, thanks for the review. :)
~Soraya~ Report Review
Hi! I'm here with your requested review :)
Simply put, I thought this was amazing.
I really enjoyed how you not only incorporated Shakespeare in the title but how you set it up in a similar way to his works (the few I've read :p ). It was a very beautiful glimpse at the important moments in James and Lily's lives and I think you captured each one of them with such care that it made this so enjoyable.
I really loved how each James and Lily were characterized. James felt like a hero, and you really did a lovely job bringing in the essence that there is indeed a war going on to this. I also liked how you showed how young and innocent the couple was through everything and how 'in over their heads' they really were in life.
The only part that I was a little confused about was the transition between their first time and James being on his death bed in the hospital. This may just be me being slow but at first I thought that was the same occasion. Primarily because they were both in a Hospital/hospital bed, but maybe if you go back and edit just add another transition to distinguish between those two occasions.
I normally don't read too many deeper/darker themed stories but I'm really glad you requested this! It sort of showed how love can prevail through even the darkest times. I didn't notice any Grammar/Punctuation either, so great work there. I wish I could be of more help but honestly I really enjoyed this; keep up the great work!
-JulieAuthor's Response: Hello :)
I'm so glad you liked this! I do like Shakespeare -- I've read a couple of his plays and quite a few poems, and my sister introduced me to this monologue, All The World's A Stage, in As You Like It.
I'm glad you liked the characterisation and the moments I chose to show in the story. This is a sequel to my chaptered James/Lily story, Checkmate, so I didn't exactly want to tell their life story or anything, lol.
I understand that it might have been confusing, as the story was told pretty much non-linearly. I might edit it when the queue reopens, so ta lots.
Despite you not usually reading darker stories, I'm glad and flattered that you enjoyed this one :) And if I may say so myself, generally, I'm pretty good on the spelling/grammar front, so thank you.
Ta for the review!
~Soraya~ Report Review
Emesias here with your requested review!
This really is an emotional piece. Yes, yes yes! I'd say this piece did work! I think that it was the amount of dialogue and description and how you carefully chose your words to match the setting and emotion ^_^ Good Job!
Happy Writing! 10/10Author's Response: Hiya :)
I'm glad you thought it was emotional and that it worked! Thank you very much for the review.
~Soraya~ Report Review
Hello darling! Here with your review!
Wow, this is a very, very emotional and well described piece. To answer your question, yes it does work. Very well, too. You did an amazing job making every transition smooth and painting very vivid pictures, and you used the present tense and remained in it the entire time! I find 3rd person present tense to be the hardest, good job!
I think you may have made James too. not mean, but that's the best word I can come up with. That's completely my head canon, though, so take it as merely an opinion. I always saw Lily with the tempter, quick fire ready to light, and James as the cool water that calms it. Yes, this would be a very stressful time, but I think James would more let his stress slide off as opposed to hold it in. I also really wanted you to go into more detail when she told James about her own terror of raising their baby in this unsafe world.
Besides those two CC, I think this is an absoltely wonderful piece. You did a remarkable job. Also, I would change where you say Lily always imagined her perfect sunset style life with James. Just because we know from canon that it wasn't until 7th year that she really fell for him ;).
Amazing job, you have a lot of talent at bringing out very dark emotions!
I also like that you tied in certain canon characters, and that every scene was very important. It made the piece a really fast/interesting read with no boring spots.
If you have any questions regarding this review, feel free to PM me :)!
JamiAuthor's Response: Hiya!
Yes, it was a very emotional story, lol. I'm glad you thought it was well-described -- that's something I've always been told to work on, so it's nice to know those efforts have paid off. And I have a weird love/hate relationship with present tense. Sometimes, it works, but not all the time. I'm glad you thought it did.
Okay, I've just responded to another review which brought up the same concern about James's characterisation. The thing is, James is human, and he would get angry about things. That's just how he is, in my head canon, that is. And this is actually a sequel to my chaptered James/Lily story, Checkmate, which was written when I was fourteen/fifteen (read: it's not very good), where James AND Lily are shown to have a slightly darker side.
Oh, I see what you mean about the whole thing regarding Lily's insecurities about raising a child. I would edit it, but the queue's closed at the moment. Maybe when it opens again, I'll consider tweaking that -- I agree that it could have been expanded on.
When I said Lily had "always" imagined that life, I meant, naturally, from the moment she started liking him. Hmmm, I might have to clarify that, so ta lots :)
Hahahaha, I would be worried if there were any boring parts, lol. Thank you for your review!
~Soraya~ Report Review
Hello there! I'm here with your review request!
First of all, I just want to say this is the first Lily/James fic I have ever read, or so I can recall. I'm actually glad you requested me to read this. I quite enjoyed it, and the pairing.
The way you started this fic off caught my attention right away. The scene with them experiencing the aftermath of their first time was amazing. It was filled with passion, love, and all the the things that should go with a first time. It was spontaneous, and not some planned event. You even mentioned Lily being in pain, and her trying to lie to James, but failing miserably. It seemed realistic, yet serenely sweet at the same time. I absolutely adore that sort of thing, because it seems more realistic then her not feeling any pain, and their first time being perfect. To me, first times are not meant to be perfect, and so you captured that amazingly, in my opinion.
Then you begin to jump to other scenes afterwards, how James has been injured in an Order mission, how Lily is nearly dying just to speak to him and worried for his life, also because we find out she is pregnant! I like how you had the flashback scene set after certain parts. It flowed nicely, and it wasn't a chapter fic where we had to wait five chapters to find out what happened. That can be a bit frustrating at times, so I liked the flow of that quite well.
I also like the concept of Harry sort of being an accident or mistake. I think people assume he was planned, but with them being so young, I think it is more likely it was an accident. Again, that's more realistic than it being planned, especially during a time of war, so that definitely worked too.
I guess my only comment would be maybe James is a bit too harsh in this. You mentioned him being an angry person in the story at times, especially his temper acting up with being cooped up in the house. I could see that being frustrating, especially with James being a bit of a prankster with his friends during his days at Hogwarts. That's why I found it a bit iffy that he would be so angry at times, because he was more of a prankster with his friends and seemed to be easy going. However, since it's a time of war and things are stressful, it could also be likely. I just want you to think about it a little bit, I suppose.
Overall, I think this story definitely works. I really enjoyed it, and I think you have nothing to worry about in that respect. I didn't notice any grammar or spelling mistakes, so don't worry about that either.
I hope this review was useful, and feel free to request me again in the future. :D
-Sara-Author's Response: Wow, you've never read a James/Lily? It's got to be the most mainstream pairing out there... then again, considering how cliched it's become lately, I'm not surprised you haven't read it before. Anyway, I'm glad you enjoyed the story :)
First times are *so* overrated. (Not that I would know what it's actually like, lol.) But I do know that it is painful, and like you said, that's something which is skirted over quite a bit in fiction generally, so I'm glad you liked that. Also, this was written for a challenge over at MNFF, and the prompt was a picture of a couple in a sunny field -- so, essentially, a picture of perfection. I wanted to show that, despite Lily's hopes of that kind of perfection, things weren't plain sailing for her and James, and both their first kiss and their first time were far from perfection.
Yay to you liking the flashbacks. I was worried that they would be confusing, with the whole non-linear structure of it and everything, so it's nice that you liked it, especially the flow. And I always pictured Harry's conception as an accident/unplanned by either James or Lily. I very much doubt they would have wanted to have a kid in the middle of a war.
I see what you mean about James's characterisation, but in his defence, they are in the middle of a war (like you said), and I did show his jokey side a bit too. My point is that James is justified in being the way he is, and I think, with all the pressure he was under, it's only fair for him, really, to get drunk/angry and basically just snap. It happens.
I'm so glad you liked this story! It gave me a hell of a lot of grief, so thank you very much for the thorough review.
~Soraya~ Report Review
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