Reading Reviews for Always
  
2 Reviews Found

Review #1, by academica Always

21st January 2013:
Hello! I'm here as requested to check out your story :)

One tiny thing I notice immediately is that you've got a sizable gap between the end of your story and your author's note. To avoid weird formatting like this, always use the Simple Editor to post.

I know you said that you were getting a beta, so I'll just point out a few things that you might want to mention to him or her and make a focus of edits. For one, your dialogue tags need a little work; I saw several improper punctuation choices and erroneous capitalization. There's a tutorial on the forums that can help--I know because dialogue tags were the bane of my existence when I first started writing, and I still make lots of mistakes! One other thing is a lot of repetition in the text itself. For instance, in the first paragraph, you have several instances of something happening "as" Severus is doing something, and it sounds a little odd. In the third paragraph, you have a lot of mentions of "memory" and "mind," to the same effect. If you can vary your sentence structure and word choice a little, that will help this stand out.

But the focus of my review was meant to be characterization, yes? I liked it a lot, to be honest. I really thought you did an excellent job with Snape, as exemplified by his little heart drawing with the word "always." It's secret enough that it doesn't give him away, but it clearly expresses his love for Lily, at least between him and her spirit. It was great how he didn't immediately jump up and shake Dumbledore's hand, but questioned the man, showed his doubts about the arrangement. Speaking of Dumbledore, I liked him a lot, too. I thought you did a nice job with his speech pattern, which can be hard to nail down, and the way he interacted with Snape felt canon-like to me, making this a really nice re-telling of this moment. The only thing I stumbled over was the fit of the quote from the Potters' gravestone. I could follow your logic somewhat, in terms of how Snape connected it, but it felt slightly forced. If you go back in, I'd consider tweaking it to see if you can get it to fit in a little more smoothly and naturally.

The flow here is nice, and the length feels appropriate. I also liked the imagery; it definitely gave me the feeling of winter, and it was like Lily's "presence" was the only real source of warmth.

Nice work! I hope this is what you're looking for :)

-Amanda

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Review #2, by Courtney Dark Always

17th January 2013:
Hey there! I'm Courtney, here for your requested review:)

What a lovely one-shot! That is the first thing that comes to mind on completing this read. I think you have captured the essence of the Prince's Tale very nicely, and have used that to put your own, individual twist on things.

You have a very nice style of writing-especially with descriptions and imagery. I think the way you started off this one-shot was absolutely perfect. Not only did it set the mood and tone of the piece, but I could really feel myself there, at the scene with Snape. I thought the line: 'The whine of the hinges filled his ears as it echoed off the church and gravestones surrounding him' was especially brilliant. I don't know why, but it stuck in my mind for the whole piece. What I do know, is that you have described Godric's Hollow extremely well, so great work!

What we see of Snape's characterization in thos one-shot is great. I liked the line: 'His curtain of dark hair hung over his eyes as tears began to fall' as it really brought me back to the books-I remember Harry constantly describing Snape's greasy black hair, so I thought that was a great description, whilst also describing the emotion Snape felt at seeing Lily's grave.

I liked what the paragraph about the memories of Snape's childhood with Lily added to the story. It showed us the connection he had with Lily and where all this emotion was coming from, rather than just stating that he was upset. It's details like this that make a story so much more believable so I commend you for that.

Your introduction and portrayal of Dumbledore was honestly spot on-he really seemed, to me, the Dumbledore from the books, which I loved. And his interactions with Snape...perfect. I can see you have have drawn a lot of inspiration from the Prince's Tale for this one-shot, and you have done so very successfully. The line '"I should ask you the same question." He said pointedly, but with mild curiosity. "You see, in times like these, I find it best to examine all of the possibilities don't you Severus?"' was really great-I can definitely imagine Dumbledore saying something like that!

I liked the way you explained how and why Snape took the job as Potions master at Hogwarts, because that was never REALLY covered in the books. And the way you ended it, with the word 'Always' tied the one-shot together very nicely, which is always good. I did notice a few grammar and spelling mistakes here and there but nothing too distracting.

Thank you for the great read!
Courtney:)

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