Here with your first review from your win in the March review battle!
First of all, I want to commend you on the way you've written this. I like that you didn't reveal who the two characters were thoughout the story. I kept trying to guess who it was, and even at one point actually thought that maybe it was Molly and Arthur and it was going to have a happy ending. Yeah could not be further off from that lol!
I love the way this story starts off with the narrator describing himself as "poison" and how it was kind of a running description through out. It kind of sets the tone for this, gives it kind of an ominous outlook from the beginning because you're like, ok this person is going to be dangerous to anything he comes into contact with.
I also loved your analysis of relationships and the way you describe one person being totally in love and another person with maybe their foot half out the door or something. I think that's a really good and realistic description of a lot of romances and marriages, and maybe just the natural ebb and flow of human connection. I thought that entire section was very well done.
I want to kind of address something quick though that probably isn't your fault. I was a bit distracted by the bolded words. My eyes kept being drawn to them and for me personally they kind of took away from the story. I'd just follow down, trying to see if they made a pattern or something, and I'd lose my place and it was just generally quite distracting for me. I know the words were given to you in the challenge so you can't really help that but I just thought I'd let you know. Just a personal preference on my side.
You have such a lovely way of describing things, and you made great use of the words that you were given. I think that they were all aptly placed and it didn't really seem like you went "Oh, I need a sentence where I can fit this word in, here let's do this." I thought it fell in good with the over all flow of the piece.
You really are masterful in using metaphors and similes in your writing. I enjoyed that description quite a bit! There were so many lines that really stuck out to me I think I would have a hard time choosing just few to quote here!
One of the other aspects of this story that I really like that you just don't see in a marauder's era romance of any sort was the way that you focused just on Lily and Sirius. This wasn't about the marauders and their counterparts, this wasn't about James and his Sirius bromance, or James trying to impress Lily. This was specifically about Sirius and wanting to shut the world out, wanting to exist as a singular unit without outside interference until she came along. I love that you also didn't really delve too deeply into their relationship and what made them work/not work. It was literally about their rise and fall and his personal demons and limitations that made their romance ultimately falter, and I think that's what makes this piece so striking and unique.
I also like that the reveal of the characters was so demure and quick. The build up to the reveal of course happened gradually throughout the story, but I love that you did it at the very end, without much pomp and fanfare. It was simple, heartbreaking, and concise, and I think that really made it stand out.
Overall I really enjoyed this piece and was impressed with your writing and attention to detail, like I said earlier!
AshAuthor's Response: Thank you so much! This is one of the best reviews I've ever gotten!
This story is really special to me, since I wanted to do a Sirius/Lily and I also wanted to do that challenge. English isn't my first language so I had to dust off the dictionary and get to it!
I'm so happy you caught on to the fact that this was about a man and his demons. Even when you're in a relationship and you love the person next to you, sometimes you have to be a little selfish. He was selfish to the point of self destruction. For me, this story creates ripples through canon, even though I know it could never be, because the way I see him, this is the man that later ended up like he did. This is what happened to him and he was reckless until the end!
Again, thank you so much for your kind words! I was blown away by your review! You are awesome! Report Review
I have been wanting to check out your stories for a long time now so I'm so excited to finally have the opportunity to do so! First off, I love the title that you've chosen for this piece. It fits perfectly with the idea of the challenge, and I like that you added the definition for the readers in your chapter summary.
Your descriptions throughout the story were lovely, and I thought they were definitely one of your strengths. There were so many lines that stuck out to me such as, "But I saw in her a story I wanted to know, had to be a part of and I just couldn't look away." The amount of depth you were able to put into a single moment of eye contact was amazing. There were so many little parts of the relationship that you pulled out and focused on, which really added to the realism of this story.
There were a few spots that I noticed you were missing commas. One in particular was in this line, "I had failed to notice the undulation of her hips as she walked the bounce of her soft curls," where there should be a comma between the word 'walked' and 'the.' Another mistake I saw was in this line, "a hunger for knowledge that would not accept raments and o passion that took every bit of me," where the 'o' should be 'of'.
I really enjoyed the complexity of the relationship that you set before us. The main character was both drawn to the girl and yet also wanted to push her away. He didn't want to be abandoned yet he was also pulling away when he realized the girl had completely fallen in love with him. The effect of the potion metaphor that you used before the relationship started was a very clever idea. I like how you continued to come back to that poison and how it returned after the relationship failed. The poison metaphor really helped draw me into the character’' mindset and how his own thoughts and fears were poisoning a good relationship. It's also very refreshing to read a romance story that doesn’t have a happy ending. The entire story felt very real to me, and I could definitely see this happening in a real setting. Relationships are often messy, complex, and end sadly, and this story featured those characteristics perfectly.
Finally, the mystery of the characters that you used throughout the piece was a very nice touch. I still felt connected to both of the characters even though I didn't know their names. While I was reading I thought that the story may have been about Snape and Lily, so I was certainly surprised when you revealed that the boy was actually Sirius. You have a very unique and beautiful writing style that I really enjoyed, so I can't wait to read more of your work!
AlliAuthor's Response: Hello dear! Sorry it's taken me so long to respond!
I'm really happy that you liked this story! It's very dear to me, since it was a very challenging piece, with English as my second language and all. Needless to say, a lot of dictionaries were involved!
And now it's out in the open, I am a closet Sirius/Lily fan (don't throw Dungbombs at me!). Something about this pairing makes me all warm and fuzzy on the inside!
I'm happy that you liked he complexity of the relationship. We usually see this carefree, player Sirius, though for this piece I took my inspiration from the letter Regulus left in the locket and his style in that one. I believe the two to have a similar education and so I think that they'd have the same manner of expressing themselves!
Again, thank you so much for the lovely review! It made my day! Report Review
Hi there! I entered the Vocabulary Challenge too and I had to see what someone else came up with, now that I'm finally done with my entry. (See, I didn't want to get all distracted, but now I'm done with all that sooo...)
This was so smooth, you. It has almost poetic qualities about it in some places. I loved your word usage and the elegant style you chose so that the words would blend into your piece without sticking out everywhere. I think if your words weren't boldfaced, I don't know that I would notice them all that much, which is a great compliment in a piece like this.
I know others have quoted this before me, but really. This:
"I was slowly pulled into her, piece by piece as I discovered she was both beautiful and ugly, that she could amaze and horrify me at the same time, that she was both flawless and ridden with imperfections. She in turn swam effortlessly in the ocean of poison I knew was inside and somehow, underneath it all, found the best in me. It was nothing like I expected a romantic relationship to be."
... was an exquisite piece of prose. There were other sections too, but that one stood out as a sparkly ray of sunshine goodness. I loved how you used the poison repetition to tie in the ending to the beginning and also that it was Sirius who was belittling himself, who had found himself not good enough for her and had pulled away because he was afraid of destroying the goodness in her.
Good luck in the challenge. You have a very impressive entry!Author's Response: This challenge was indeed very... challenging. And I'm really happy you liked it. I'll go and read yours once I get a chance. Good luck with your story! Report Review
OH MY GOSH SIRIUS AND LILY??!?!?!
(Hello, from your Secret Santa xD)
I'll admit; I didn't see that one coming.
I had no idea who it would be, and I figured it was going to be one of those where the names of the characters weren't going to be revealed.
BUT THIS IS DIFFERENT!
I have to say, I don't like the pairing of Sirius and Lily at all, but your writing here was just superb.
I love reading stories like this one-shot that are written in such a different way, and the way you used the words were so well incorporated into the story!
I still don't like Sirius/Lily pairing, but this was so well-done. The bit about love and the bit about feeling like a teenager again.
Everything about it was just so well done.
Secret SantaAuthor's Response: Thank you Santa for the lovely review. This story is really one that I'm proud of and I love it when I see it's not only in my head! *blush*
Thank you so much for all the lovely reviews and I hope you have a happy New Year!
My Gosh. I cannot express my SHOCK right now. How could you!? Sirius and Lily! No. No. just no.
But, with that aside, I really really really enjoyed this piece, and I'd just like to say, that it actually is my favourite one-shot iv'e ever read on here.
The way that you just expressed it was beautiful, and very soulful. And thank you, for such an amazing story.
Absolutely loved it :)
- AbhiAuthor's Response: Hello there! I'm glad the shock factor I was aiming for got across. But hey, don't throw rocks at the fanfiction author, Jily got together in the end!
Thank you so much for the lovely review! :) Report Review
Ohhh my gosh I want to be SO mad at you right now, really I do. Because you can't pair Sirius and Lily. You just can't. Sirius is to loyal to James... but I don't even care because this very, very beautiful. I can't say that I even thought for a moment that it was those two.. for a bit I was sure it was Scorpius and Rose, then Lily and Severus, I even wondered about Minerva and Dumbledore for a tiny moment. But did NOT think of these two. the surprise of it was absolutely awesome.
Setting my own 'LILY AND JAMES ONLY' feelings aside, I think the feelings, the intensity, the gravity you surrounded their relationship with was perfect in every way. This piece didn't need to be written for a challenge. It was one of those kinds that doesn't depend on the challenge to have its own story, but instead you slid the purpose of the challenge expertly into it. And you were very careful to keep the entire narrative formal, over exaggerated, to fit with the words you were given. I was really impressed with how well this captured the reader... or.. err.. me, I suppose :P
It was a whirlwind romance, even by my standards and I had read extensively on the topic. I was slowly pulled into her, piece by piece as I discovered she was both beautiful and ugly, that she could amaze and horrify me at the same time, that she was both flawless and ridden with imperfections. She in turn swam effortlessly in the ocean of poison I knew was inside and somehow, underneath it all, found the best in me. It was nothing like I expected a romantic relationship to be.
I just had to point at that entire paragraph because of how much I loved it. It was probably my favorite in the story, and had so much fire, so much truth to what he saw in her, what he found in her. and gah.
This was a really, really awesome one shot. I'm so happy I decided to come back by, because I enjoyed reading this more than I can explain.
Awesome job, darling!
♥Author's Response: Don't throw rocks at me! Sirius/Lily is my guilty pleasure and when I saw the list of words I just knew I had to do it. She got together with James in the end! *hides*
I'm so happy you enjoyed it, this was indeed very challenging to write and I was really proud when I pulled it off.
And you've left me two reviews in one day! You spoil me so much! *blush* Report Review
You've done something amazing here, I think. It seems that you welded your given words perfectly into the framework of your own style, and everything... just... fits.
The characters' names didn't even occur to me until the very end because I was so caught up in the beautiful, beautiful syntax.
Also, I love Oscar Wilde! Fabulous quote incorporation. :D
I just entered this challenge, but now that I've read this, I know that whatever I write will bow down and worship this story.
It was a lovely... no, a MARVELOUS read. Good luck in the challenge!!Author's Response: Hey there!
Thank you so much for your beautiful comment, it really made my day. I'm so happy you enjoyed it! :)
Good luck to you too and happy writting! Report Review
Hey, I'm here from common room tag. :)
So, this was interesting. You've clearly made an effort to incorporate the vocabulary you've been given for your challenge, so well done there. The voice you've given your OC, as well as the romance, feel believable and fit well with the words you've been given.
That said, I have issues with your reveal of your characters' identities - or at least first names - near the end. If this is the Sirius of the Marauders, then you can improve on his characterisation; from what we see of him in the books, and from the environment he's probably grown up in, his language is going to be far more colloquial, and this'd be also true if, say, these were Next Gen kids named after the Marauders. The only possible explanation I can think of really is that this is Sirius' namesake with some random chick named Lily... I don't know. It threw me off.
Anyway, good luck with your challenge, and I'll see you round. :)Author's Response: Hey there!
From the way I see it, both Black brothers were raised in the finest education. The idea actually came from the letter signed RAB and the language there. This was not a story about how he dealt with his friends, but rather his internal turmoil, which he alone could understand. I couldn't possibly imagine him telling any of the others these things.
Thank you for your feedback! :) Report Review
Hey it's me reviewing your story! Thanks for entering my challenge!
This was a beautiful story. The entire time I was left guessing as to who the narrator might possibly be. I must admit I was completely surprised that it was Sirius, but it was a good surprised ;) I really liked the complexity that you showed with Siruis's perspective andn character. It was quite a refreshing breather from the usual playboy/ angsty/ sassy Sirius we often see in fanficiton. This was like you took Sirius's soul and ripped it open for the world to see, which was amazing. I also think you incorporated your words wonderfully!
Sometimes your sentences could get a bit long. Just varying your sentence length to help keep the pace of the story. However, it wasn't a turn-off at all. Also, sometimes the dialogue felt a bit formal. At first, it didn't suit me but by the end I actually felt it fit the story better than informal dialogue would. This story was very serious and a bit angsty so the dialogue turned out to be great.
Wonderful story! Thanks for entering! Keep an eye on the blogs after December 31st for the results :)
classicblackAuthor's Response: Hey there! Thanks for reviewing!
This really was a challenge I must say, seeing as English isn't my first language, but it was a lovely exercise. :)
I'm really happy you enjoyed it and I will keep an eye out for the blog! Report Review
YES!The whole time I was thinking, "Who is this going to be about?!" Crazy good!Loved it!:)Author's Response: Thank you! :D
I'm so glad you liked it! Report Review
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