Reading Reviews for A Lightness
  
27 Reviews Found

Review #1, by TooMuchMagic not quite her name

17th April 2014:
That ending is so haunting, and that attack omg ;_; I love how you incorporated the blue right at the end, with this sense of finality, and I just get the feeling she won't make it. If I recall clearly she'd Seen it in tea leaves or something earlier on?

I've never read a fic focused on Lavender before. This was so refreshing, how she was all light and laughter and happiness. And then it was all taken away :'( The dynamic with Viola was disturbing - that girl is messed up. At first I thought she didn't have a mother, so she competed with Lavender for hers, but then she does?

The whole thing is so very (very!) long but so beautifully-written! You've got such a flair for making English wonderful haha. There's just something quite lovely about your writing style here. It's quite nice to read this after the Merope fic hahaha. Thanks for sharing 10/10 x

Author's Response: Oh, hello again!

Wow, another lovely surprise review! *hugs* Thank you so much for coming back to my humble author's page and reading a story...a very, very, very long one, too! I'm so glad you took the time to stick with Lavender's story right until the end.

And you are spot-on with your comment about Seeing; that's what I was trying to show with the Divination and the tea leaves and all. In the books Harry and co. thought all that was rubbish, but to Lavender it's something that means a lot to her.

Ooh yeah, Viola is quite nasty. But I didn't want the two girls to be straightforward enemies; I always feel that relationships in life are a lot more complex than what we label them as.

And in my headcanon, Lavender didn't make it out of the final battle. :( But I didn't mention that explicitly in this fic's ending. But no matter the outcome, I do feel that there's some sort of hope for her, some sort of redemptive light, some kind of release.

Thank you so much about your comments on my writing style!!! This just made my day, gah! And thanks once again for another wonderful review; you're the best! ♥

-teh


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Review #2, by Lululuna not quite her name

29th March 2014:
Hi teh! :)

Ah, I'm sorry it took so long to get to this! :) I've been meaning to r&r this story for a while, and I love it. It's just beautiful, and I love how you've brought Lavender to life here. You've done a really good job of maintaining her character from canon - the story feels extremely canon, in fact - while adding so much to her. She still comes across as a little silly and flighty sometimes, and she really wouldn't be Lavender without that, but at the same time she's so much more loveable.

I found the family dynamics at the beginning so interesting, with the strange trio of Lavender, her mother and Viola. I've seen this in your stories before, but I love how you slip into the character's immediate voice, like here: My mother is lovely, lovely! which shows how her immediate reactions and childlike thoughts differ from her future self.

Viola is such a nasty character, but a wonderful addition. I found her strange competition with Lavender for her mother really interesting, but she's one of those horribly secretive malicious people that are just so dislikable. I did wonder a bit at how she seemed to completely disappear from Lavender's radar at Hogwarts, but it worked to bring her back during the war and show how their relationship was progressing. :) I also liked how Lavender started by thinking her mother was beautiful and perfect, and then realized how she had her own shallowness and corruptions - when she saw something in her mother's eyes that she didn't like. I was also cringing the whole time her mother asked Lavender whether the bookshelf falling was a mistake before getting the heavy thing off her daughter - gah.

I thought the incorporations of Lavender and Parvati's obsession with Divination were really powerful and so effective here as it gave them a rationale for that interest. In the books the trio just sort of mock them for it, but for Lavender it is a form of escape, and Trelawney gives her a new female figure to idolize. Another thing I really loved was the inclusion of Binky's death.

The friendship between Lavender and Parvati was so lovely, and especially that girlish excitement in having a best friend and how they truly are so close. I also liked the growing hints of Parvati's crush on Seamus, and of course the Padma dynamic. It's never a ship that I would have thought of, but it fits that after Lavender's obsessive and false "relationship" with Ron she would turn to Padma. The way Padma evolved through the story was wonderful as well, like how Parvati sort of resented her and wanted to avoid her, how Lavender didn't really understand Padma, but how natural it felt for them to eventually get together.

I love how you wrote Ron to be so clunky and awkward, like a real person. Instead of having him be physically perfect, he smells and sounds and acts like he has a human body, and I really appreciate that in comparison to typical descriptions of lovers. I thought the moment where Padma asked to keep Lavender's drawings for Ron was an especially subtle, but really lovely moment.

Aw, the ending was so sad. :( The description of Greyback attacking her, and the clarity of that moment, was just perfect. I think if you'd added any more description to it, the moment wouldn't have had the same effect, but it was just subtle enough to have a painful impact for the reader. I also like how you left the ending open - does she die? Does she go to heaven? Does she survive? I love it when stories let the reader decide, and the story ended beautifully either way.

This was such a lovely story, teh! ♥ I loved every image, every word, and I wish I had the time to comment on more of them. It's the kind of story I'll want to come back to and soak up again and again. :)

Author's Response: Ah, hello Jenna!

Thank you for yet again another amazing review!! And thank you for choosing to read this fic of mine, sitting at the bottom of my page. It's the first one-shot I put up on HPFF, and I'm glad you liked it! I kind of miss writing stories like this.

Lavender, I thought, deserved a bit of a fuller story; in the books, she's been portrayed as someone who's rather inane, dramatic and ridiculous. I had a grand time writing her - though I didn't seem to know when to stop. :P

I wanted to write Lavender's experiences with a number of relationships in her life, - relationships with her mother, sister, best friend, boyfriend/girlfriend, teacher and so on. Hence, this entire story is about relationships of all sorts, relationships central to Lavender's life. Viola was meant to be the 'sister', except I decided not to have them actually be siblings. :P She is quite a bully, and I think Lavender wouldn't have wanted to be too close to her, especially not once she got to school and met Parvati and the other Gryffindor girls. But I didn't think that Viola and Lavender should have a completely hostile relationship to one another, hence the scene in the final section where they bid each other goodbye in tears. They both did spend lots of their childhood together, after all.

And I'm really glad you noticed Lavender's feelings about her mother! She does initially adore her beautiful mother, and feels small and unattractive in comparison, but as she grows older, and grows into herself, she also grows out of this adoring state.

Parvati and Padma were fun to write! At first, I was a bit afraid of writing twins; I had no idea if I could differentiate them enough, so it means great deal to me to hear your comments about their characters.

And I do indeed love slipping into my character's immediate voice in my prose! Especially when I think the narrative starts to get a bit monotonous. :P I also love internalising my character's voice into the narrative. :)

The ending is indeed meant to be open. When I was writing this, my headcanon was that she'd died, but I left the ending open for readers to interpret otherwise. I'm not so sure now, however; she could have survived, and if she did, I'm sure she would have recovered quickly, despite the scars and the attack - she's pretty resilient.

Thank you for this absolutely wonderful review again! I'm really happy that you enjoyed this story!! ♥ ♥

teh


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Review #3, by Unwritten Curse not quite her name

21st February 2014:
Nicole.

Nicole, Nicole, Nicole.

I did not know that you were such a brilliant writer! (probably because I have seriously slacked in reading your writing) I saw on your HPFF profile that this story had won loads of awards so I figured I'd read it.

Excuse my incoherence.

Nicole, this is stunning. Your prose is so new it's breath-taking. I particularly loved the paragraph about dread, which is an awfully simple concept, but you wrote it so strikingly--Lavender laughing to show the feeling of weight that she was present. And the notion of something sitting against her ear when she closed her eyes. I can't even.

I have to tell you that I never read one-shots that are this long. I began reading thinking I'd abandon half-way (I'm not the best at staying focused), but I could not peel my eyes from this story. The characters became real. The plot had meaning. Just everything.

EVERYTHING.

I may be crazy, but I am adding you to my Favorite Authors. I can't imagine anything less after reading this beauty. I'm your newest fangirl.

xx Gina

Author's Response: OHMYGOODNESS

GINA ♥ ♥

/What/ do I do with this review!?!?

Seriously, seriously, THANK YOU. THANK YOU for choosing to read this fic, right to the end; the sheer length of it has always bothered me a little, and I'm always afraid that people would get bored halfway and abandon reading. It's the first one-shot I put up here on HPFF and it's incredibly wonderful that even today I'm getting such amazing feedback from awesome readers like you! ♥ So to hear that you couldn't stop reading (I have the problem of staying focused too, haha!) is just the BEST compliment ever.

THANK YOU, LOVE.

Gaaahh, thank you so much for the author favourite; I'm still a bit blown away by this and by everything you've said.

♥ ♥

(this response is full of hearts, I know, but still not enough to convey ALL OF MY LOVE so have plenty more. :P ♥ ♥ ♥)

teh


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Review #4, by evil little devil not quite her name

19th January 2014:
I have been meaning to read your work for a while now, I kept seeing your name around in the keckers, and I'm very glad I finally got around to it.
You have this beautiful gift for taking all these characters that are explored so shallowly in the books, and giving them such a wonderful characterisation without taking away any of their canon characteristics. You made Lavender feel so incredibly human, like someone I would happily be friends with, even though she still retains those characteristics she gets stereotyped for.
This story is such a mishmash of relationships and emotions - it is such a beautiful portrayal of a person's life, in which we get to see all the key people in her life and how they affected her. Beginning with Viola, you wrote her so beautifully creepy. And then the friendship with Parvati was beautifully done - I love it when friendships are centred in stories, because they are so important to us all in life, and yet often in writing they are left to the background. Even with the relationships coming and going (which were both also gorgeously done), it was Parvati that centred Lavender's story.
This was such a gorgeous one-shot, such a delight to read!

Author's Response: Hello there!

Wow, thank you for this really lovely review! ♥ This was such a surprise to receive; thank you so much for stopping by my AP and choosing to read this story; I know it wasn't a short read, and it really means a lot to me.

Yeah, what you described in your review is pretty much what I was trying to do with Lavender here: explore her character in far more detail than how she's portrayed in the books, and to show her in a more sympathetic light.

The entire story is indeed a mishmash of relationships and emotions; I was trying to write all the main phases of Lavender's life, her important relationships and how she moves through them. I'm glad you like the relationships in this story! They're a key part of the fic, and without them, the story would simply fall flat. The Parvati-Lavender friendship is indeed one of the main relationships of the story, and it's the most durable one.

Thank you so much once again for this absolutely wonderful review! ♥ You've made my entire week. ^.^

-teh


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Review #5, by MissesWeasley123 not quite her name

20th December 2013:
:(

I curse myself every time I read your pieces because they are always so good and *sigh* I don't understand how you do it. You're the only author who's one shots I can read that I know are more than 7K words, because I know there's a reason that they're so detailed and descriptive. I don't think you could've done this piece justice if it hadn't been this perfect of a size. Not too short, not too long. You managed to tell Lavender's whole story to me in 9K words, and I applaud you on that.

Viola was a pain. First Lily Lou and now her? *gives dirty look* She was absolutely horrible.

I'm going to talk about Lavender now. You made her your own, and I prefer this one much more than J.K. Rowling's. You gave her so much depth, and made her so much more than an annoying girl who's obsessed with Ron and Dvination, and loves gossip. It was great. There was so much sadness inside of her, and so much darkness in her life, but then there were good things too, like Padma. Their relationship was beautiful and so sad too. You showed how their love grew for each other and it was absolutely breathtaking.

But not only that relationship too. You showed her friendship with Parvati with such care and so tenderly, it made me see how friendship should really be like between two girls.

And her and Ron's relationship! So well described and well planned out. You backed it up with some immensely well thought and I loved it. Firenze's inclusion was amazing too, and I'm literally shaking at the beauty of this because it's my second time reading it, and I've only just gotten to review, and it's amazing. I love it so so much. It's amazing.

I couldn't say it enough times teh, and just cannot stress it enough - you are one of the most talented people on this site. You write beautiful things and make your readers feel. Great writing as always and this is truly a really emotional fic. Keep on writing like this m'dear and you will be published one day. And I'll be the first in line for it.

Author's Response: aclkiuencnjf Nadia

your reviews are JUST amazing and squee-inducing and honestly, sometimes reviewers like you are just why I'm still on the site pumping out fic, why I obsess daily about stories that I can't really do anything much with...THANK YOU AND I LOVE YOU. Again and again ♥ ♥

Thank you for reading this loong oneshot of mine, and the first oneshot I ever posted up to HPFF - in fact, the first oneshot I wrote in a long, long time. I'm gad you didn't think this is too long. I haven't reread this story in months - not since I put it up, actually, and I'm quite afraid of re-reading.

I'm glad you found this version of Lavender a lot more likable and with more depth than the canon portrayal of her through Harry's POV. Her character existed in the books solely for the purpose of ridicule, and as such she came across as silly and shallow. I like taking these sorts of characters - these silly, ridiculous ones and making something more out of them. Glad you like Lavender/Padma, too! And yes, I was trying to show how Lavender moves through and experiences different phases/relationships of her life, from her relationship with her mother, her 'sister' Viola (like Lily-Lou I had a ton of fun writing her! I love writing meanies!!), her best friend, her first love(s) etc.

And yay, you like Firenze's inclusion! I'm pretty proud of that bit, too! *hugs*

I'm just literally on the verge of tears reading your review, because it really really really means SO MUCH to me that my writing could have such an impact on ANYONE, and I can't thank you enough for all your lovely comments. THANK YOU MY LOVE and apologies for taking so long to respond to this!

teh ♥


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Review #6, by Cannons not quite her name

4th November 2013:
Hey!

Remember when I said that I was going to review all your stories...well I'm going through them one by one, and I'm back!

I was seriously expecting to have to struggle through 9000+ words but it wasn't like that at all, I just kept reading and forgot about the length and I can defiantly see why you won all those awards for this.

I think this is so brilliantly written. The amount of detail and description adds to the story so much and gives it so much depth. You show her love for Divination throughout in a gradual sort of way rather then just saying it, and it made it so much better for that.

I hate Viola, I'm sorry! She is such a well developed character though and we get the sense that you know a lot more about her, which makes her more believable, to me anyway. Most people have a few different sides to them but her dark side seemed a little sinister to me and cruel. I can defiantly see how her relationship with Lavender would have impacted Lavender. Especially her relationship with her mother, because she feels Viola is more like her mother then she is. She seems to grow up a bit at the end though and I like how you included that bit as it added so much.

I loved seeing Ron, Harry and Hermione through her eyes, it was so refreshing. She defiantly see's Ron as the third wheel and I felt a bit bad for him but we know that isn't the case really, but from the outside I imagine that's how everyone saw Ron.

The relationship with Padma came as a real surprise to me ( I didn't read properly, I just click on the story) so I actually thought it was Parvati for some reason that she was going to get with, but Padma works so much better. They defiantly compliment each other well.

I don't know if you chose the word 'grave' on purpose here - “Lavender Brown, why so grave? Is that the whole world sitting on your shoulders?” - but it was really painful, I didn't want her to die after reading this! I actually want to read more stories about her. She didn't get much of a chance in life :'(

All in all this is such a complex one shot and was really interesting to read. You should defiantly write some more about Lavender, I enjoyed this so much.

It defiantly deserves all the awards it won IMO. Every time I read a story written by you I am left distinctly unimpressed with my own writing! :P

Cannons!

Author's Response: Cannons! You've forgot your "I'm crazy..." challenge, or whatever it was. :P

Thank you so much for coming back, and apologies for the delay in responding. I'm a bit caught up with NaNo at the moment!

I'm so glad you managed to get through all 9000+ words of my rambling. And hopefully it didn't come across as a terrible chore :O I know you said that you'd review all my stories, but honestly, you've already written so many brilliant reviews for me, and if there's anything else on my author's page that you feel is too troublesome to read, or too long, or contains themes/warnings that you're uncomfortable with, then please don't feel obligated to!! I don't want to make anyone uncomfortable :D

Thank you so much for your comment on Viola! It's just the kind of comment I would like people to leave, on how I know much more about my characters and when they come across as well-developed. Yeah, she is indeed very creepy sometimes, quite a nasty bully as well. I'm also glad you think Padma and Lavender make an interesting pairing!

I don't know if I can write any more on Lavender, though. This story was so long, and I think it was fairly detailed with Lavender's life, so I'm a bit blocked on her character at the moment. (OK, in my headcanon she died during the Final Battle...you probably didn't want to know that, but that's how I depicted her at the end of this fic. It's ambiguous, though; it's possible that she recovered...) :P

Don't be unimpressed by your own writing! Everyone writes differently, and not everyone will like what is on my page. I should come by and read some of your works soon, maybe when NaNo is over and done with.

Thank you so much again, Cannons! ♥

-teh


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Review #7, by oblivescence not quite her name

6th August 2013:
I have never read a story based on Lavender before but Im really glad I did this one. I love the way you showed her as so different to the way you see her in the books and the story at the beginning with Viola was so sad, I really started to hate Viola (but I like how she grew up a bit towards the end it made her seem more real).

You managed to make what started out as a shallow and superficial character into a complex and very likeable one but still keeping it believable that she was seen the way she was described in the books.

I really wasnt expecting the ship - at all - even a sentence before it happened, but the way you wrote it really worked with the characters you had established and the way Lavender had progressed through the story.

I like the way that you wrote Divination and Seeing into things, it gave Lavender a lot more depth and foreshadowed the War and Battle of Hogwarts perfectly. They were well done as well; especially the way you managed to filter in her thoughts in with the description, and using her senses when she was attacked made it seem really real.

The last paragraph was beautiful, especially the metaphors used to describe what dying felt like to her. Was the bright blue in the corner meant to be a metaphor for something? At first I thought it could be that her afterlife would be a lot brighter and happier than her life on earth but then I thought it could possibly be Dumbledores eyes, like he is guiding her on and helping her to let go. Im awful with finding metaphors so Im probably way off.

The whole thing was written beautifully, the descriptions especially were done really well. It was quite long but I think that was probably necessary to get everything in with the right detail. Im a bit confused with the name of the chapter though but I probably just missed something. Really great oneshot.

- Annie

Author's Response: Hello Annie! :D Wow, this is such an amazing and completely unexpected review! It has absolutely made my day. Thank you so much for taking the time to read this very long oneshot and for leaving such comments!

I was certainly trying to write Lavender in a more sympathetic manner than how she's portrayed in the books, or through Harry's perspective. She seems to exist in canon for the sole purpose of ridicule, and I wanted to explore a different side of her, as well as write her as a better-developed three-dimensional character. And I'm glad you don't feel so that much hate toward Viola! :P Some of the other reviewers aren't so generous in their feelings towards her! With Viola I wanted to explore the nature of 'sisterhood' (sort of) - the two are not sisters at all; they're rather different from each other and yet they've grown up together. I'm glad you found it realistic that they parted on good terms. I didn't want the line between sisters/enemies to be too distinct; life's never simple like that :)

And of course, people are never as simple and superficial as they sometimes appear - that's what was in my mind when I was planning out this fic.

Padma/Lavender did spring out from nowhere. :P That being said, I'm incredibly relieved and happy that you thought this worked in context with the characters and their developments.

As for that bright blue bit, there's a whole clutter of possible meanings that you could infer from it; I wouldn't limit it to one precise thing. That being said, almost everyone's eyes are described as 'blue' in this fic :P For me, it felt like a moment of clarity.

Thank you so so much once again for this amazing review! ♥ It is indeed a long story, because I wanted to cover almost all of Lavender's life, grom her childhood to her death, and I'm so glad you enjoyed this!

-teh


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Review #8, by cypress not quite her name

1st August 2013:
Chills, my dear teh. I'm getting chills. What an amazing story! Seriously, I am blown away. The level of detail is just - indescribable. I love how you've wove Lavender's love of divination into the story, all the way from the beginning, and basically used it to lace it all together. The detail about happiness, the final battle, and blue - it was all the perfect balance of subtlety. Just enough to make it all really impactful without going over our heads.

This was one of my favorite parts: "I had to split my throat wide open and pull the laughter out of my belly; I had to draw it out, draw it over the silences, the lulls between thoughts - I had to let that thing, that unknown weight, whatever it was, know that I was present, I was watching it watch me, I knew it was there." I really like how seriously you treated her attachment to divination. I like the legitimacy you gave her, gave the subject, and gave to Trelawny. It was really nice to have that perspective on things when in the books we only get brief glimpses of "real" divination.

Her interaction with Firenze was wonderful, really poignant. Really, all of them were - being bullied by her cousin, the sympathetic way you described her attraction to Ron, the way that she and Padma grew together. I saw that bit of foreshadowing with the letters and notes - I thought - "oh my goodness, I think Padma likes her." And then it happened, and it all made sense.

And I'm really impressed with your ending. I'm really impressed how everything comes together in the end - how she feels the sparks of energy, and how that reinforces her perceptiveness - how you don't shy away from maiming her. I don't recall what happened to her in the books, but I vaguely recall that the Patil sisters were fighting separately, I think. And I like the other perspective on the battle. I really just - I have no possible suggestions. This piece is simply perfect as it is. I'm so impressed.

Author's Response: cypress!♥ ♥

Oh my goodness, your reviews are simply the best a;fljsadnjsajk. I honestly am a little speechless here. But first, I must apologise for taking such an inexcusably long time to respond to your lovely compliments. Your review just blew me away and gaah.

So I wrote this story awhile ago and I know it's long. :P Really, really long, for a oneshot, that is. Still, I'm so glad you had the patience to sit through and read this. Lavender is a character who seems to exist for the purpose of ridicule in the books, and I really wanted to show a different side of her in this fic. This is a maybe-sort-of biography type fic, where I write her life from childhood up until the end (in my headcanon, she died, - also, she was killed in the films...). I was trying to portray her with compassion; it's something I feel I have to do with my characters, whether I like them or now - to (hopefully) write them with empathy and without passing judgement on them.

The Divination bits came to me naturally, since this is Lavender after all, and they do sort of hold things together in this story; Lavender is meant to be an extraordinarily perceptive person, who sees and feels things, and yet who doesn't quite understand fully what these things are...at least that was what I was trying to convey. :D That Firenze part is surprisingly my favourite part. I didn't expect that bit to happen while I was writing, but it just seemed natural and so I included him; that scene is supposed to be ominous but without being too overwhelming, and I'm so, so happy to hear that you found it poignant.

As for what happened to lavender in canon - it's not known whether she really died or not. In DH, during the final battle, JKR wrote that she fell from a balcony with another unnamed person, and the moment she fell, she was attacked by Fenrir Greyback (that's who attacked her in this story, though of course, Lavender is not very familiar with him or his name...). In my headcanon, she died, but really, there is a good chance that she survived and became better.

Well, thank you so so so much for this fabulous and flattering review, cypress! ♥ It means so much to hear such wonderful feedback!

teh ♥


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Review #9, by atellam not quite her name

1st August 2013:
I love your interpretation of Lavender. I think this is the most canon story I've read about her, although I must admit I haven't read many (largely because I hate how people characterise her so often in fanfiction.) Your Lavender is brilliant, though, and I love how you've written Parvati and Padma as well. Really well done.

Wonderful story, and I can't wait to read some more of your writing. Keep up the excellent work!
- A. :)

Author's Response: Hello! Wow, what a lovely surprise review! Thank you so much ♥

The most canon story about Lavender? I'm honestly so flattered right now :D And yeah, she isn't characterised with too much sympathy in fanfic; it's probably because we see her through Harry's skewed POV in the books, where she appears to be a ridiculous, silly, vapid, annoying character. The goal of this story was to change that! I'm glad you like the Patil twins as well; they're such minor characters in the books and we hardly see anything of them!

Thank you so much for your lovely review!

-teh


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Review #10, by marauderfan not quite her name

24th May 2013:
This was so good! I really love stories told from a minor character's point of view, it gives such a unique perspective - of the trio, of the battle, Divination even. I'd never found Lavender at all relatable in the books, but you showed a completely different side to her in this fic that not only fit in with how she was in the books, but managed to make her so much more three-dimensional.

I liked how you included so much in such a short (ish) story - her whole history from pre-Hogwarts until the battle. She grows so much as a character and although the books only really had the giggly and jealous side of Lavender, this really explained why she is the way she is.

I never would have thought of Lavender/Padma before but it worked out so well in this! And I liked Parvati and Seamus together too.

I could go on forever about how much I loved this. You are an incredibly talented writer. This is one of my favourite stories I've read on this site. :)

Author's Response: Hello again!

One of your favourite stories? :O Honestly, this made my day beyond unmaking and right now I'm wearing this big stupid grin (not unlike Ron's in the story). I would be very surprised if many people found Lavender relatable in the books; she's a completely flat character, existing only for the purpose of ridicule. In real life, humans aren't so simple :) And I wanted to show things through her eyes, and of course, make her into a fuller character who breathes, thinks, feels, opines, and basically has her own life that doesn't revolve around Ron - well, not too much. At the same time, I also wanted to keep her true to the canon portrayal of her e.g. all that silliness and girlishness and Won-Wons bahaha!

I'm so so happy you liked this story. And for all the beautiful compliments in which I'm basking in right now. (Someone needs to jab my ego and deflate it before I float off to space :P )

Thanks again!

-teh ★


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Review #11, by patronus_charm not quite her name

16th May 2013:
I’ve seen this story popping up all the time and I’ve been meaning to get round and review it so here I am. Surprisingly enough I have actually found a one-shot which is longer than this, I think it was about 11,000 words :P

Wow, I was simply blown away by this. I’ve never come across anything like this before, and I’m sitting here in awe. Everything was perfect the characterisation, the structure, the description, the dialogue. I could go on forever really. I can definitely see why it won all of those Keckers!

I think the addition of Viola is really what made this one-shot. Lavender’s always been a mystifying character to me, I always felt that she had some hidden quality about her which was hiding the real her and you brought to life here. The feeling of envy is a powerful one, and if you feel it so young like she did there’s bound to be scars of it in her later life. Viola was an amazing character, not in her likeability factor but in her complexities and how thought out she was. She’s one of the best villains I’ve come across, due to her two sides. The nice one most people see and then the other side, which only a few see.

I really enjoyed seeing the world through her perspective, it was so refreshing. I think what I enjoyed most was her naivety towards Hermione and Harry. She didn’t seem to pick up on their dislike for her, and took it all as a joke, and that provided a really endearing nature to her. She also proved to be a sympathetic character and a relatable one too, which is something I never would have thought I would say about her.

I have a confession that I knew about Lavender/Padma ship due to it saying on your awards, and that’s part of the reason for coming here. Yet I was still taken by surprise and I never thought it was going to come about in that way. I thought that Padma would be friends with Viola due to their reserve and almost coldness at the beginning, but I really liked how you eased her gently so her presence took me and Lavender by surprise. Their first kiss was perfect and the mention of the pineapple ring had me guessing.

The inclusion of sub-plots was also wonderful here. I liked how you showed how Lavender and Parvati were so close, and how they matured together which made Lavender and Padma being together even more shocking. You made me want Parvati and Seamus to get together yet that didn’t draw away from the main pairing. The comments about Trelawney and Firenze were also wonderful and drew in her love of Divination brilliantly.

I think I only spotted one truly tiny error here ‘“You will be well, Lavender”,’ where there was a misplaced comma, but unless you’re planning on doing a massive edit, I wouldn’t bother just for that.

That was just an amazing one-shot, teh. I am definitely adding that to my favourites and your writing has blown me away yet again :D

-Kiana

Author's Response: KIANA OMG ♥ ♥

alksfjlkas

Hello again! Eeep this review has turned me into a pool of non-human mush agghs I don't even know how to respond! But I'm really so astounded at how this fic of mine has been picking up bits of attention over the last few weeks - it did collect a few awards, but I've always had the impression that not many people apart from Hufflepuffs knew of this story. But I can't express just how grateful I am.

I am glad you like Viola's characterisation! She has quite a mean streak to her, and yes, plenty of envy. But I didn't just want her relationship with Lavender to be purely antagonistic all the way; I wanted there to be some variation. After all, despite these bullying tendencies of Viola, the girls still grew up together, played together and even parted on good terms at the end.

And the Lavender/Padma ship bahaha! Initially, for this story all I wanted was to write Lavender in a femmeslash pairing. Hearing you say all those things about Padma is so gratifying :D You've pretty much got everything about her and her relationship with Lavender - it's a quieter kind of relationship, a lot mellower than the Ron/Lavender bit, and a completely different experience for either girl. And Seamus and Parvati did get together! I'd like to think that they remained together for quite some time :D

I will be editing this fic soon; there are bits where I need to tidy things up. So thank you for pointing that out; I never noticed that misplaced comma!

Eee thank you sososo much for this amazing and completely unexpected review, Kiana ♥ And for favouriting! These are such wonderful compliments you've given me and they've completely made my week :D

teh ♥


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Review #12, by Siriusly89 not quite her name

13th May 2013:
Hey! Siriusly89 here, reviewing!

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read this one-shot, and not reviewed it! Shameful I tell you, shameful. So now, not only am I finally reviewing this, but also helping Team Black with a prompt, so it’s a win-win situation over here!

Viola, as ever, seems rather mentally-ill to me. Maybe her own mother really doesn’t spend that much time with her, which is why she feels the need to nick poor Lavenders mom, but still, the whole making a bookshelf fall on her, because she stated the obvious, that her mother was not Viola’s was a bit much. I actually had a similar experience, of someone treating my mom as their own, but luckily I never had something thrown on top of me!

I love the mention of the way she met Parvati. In the books, they were both described as a bit ditzy and dense, but here you really delve into their personalities, and show us that Parvati resents her sister, and then Lavender has a whole host of underlying issues.

You really do give us such a clear insight into Lavenders mind. She laughs loud because she wants to forget, and she joins the DA to fight, but not necessarily fight Voldemort, to me it seems like she’s sort of raging war on herself, does that make any sense?

I love it, Lavender was drawn to Ron because he seemed a bit out of place too, and more than a bit lost. The description of her ‘crush’ was so well-written, and it sounded like a typical teenage girl, but still with that edge Lavender has. That really doesn’t make much sense either, but anyway!

I like Padma, I do. She’s just so straight forward, and she really doesn’t sugar-coat anything, not even to make someone feel better. She sounds like that loner girl that no one really likes, or no one really hates, and she just intrigues me.

Can I just say that I think Padma/Lavender is the best ship of invention? You’ve managed to make the most perfect pairing in just one segment, something it takes some people chapters upon chapters to do!

Again, I really like Padma. She doesn’t judge Lavender for who she is, but she doesn’t encourage her either. She really is her perfect match.

The ending. Words cannot describe it, but I shall try. Its just so beautiful, and so perfect for this one-shot, and just. . . .. . gah! I told you words couldn’t describe it!

Go Team Black! :)

Author's Response: Hello Sarahjane :)

Eee you had me flailing at "I can't tell you how many times I've read this one-shot..."

Honestly, I'm so flattered that someone has come back to reread this story of mine despite its length, so thank you soso much! And don't worry about not reviewing before...er...ehehe I'm guilty of ninja-reading as well :P

Your comments about the characters are so insightful! And they really made me think about my own characters. You're right about Lavender joining the DA not because she wants to directly defy Voldemort - but because she's excited, confused, impulsive even...basically she's a bunch of hypersensitive nerve endings :D And I'm glad you pointed out how the Patil twins are different! I was trying to make all the characters real and believable in this story! In the books, all of these characters - Lavender, Parvati, Padma, Trelawney etc. are one-dimensional, so it truly does mean a lot when readers find they can relate to my characters / or that there is depth to their characters.

And gaaah Padma/Lavender the best ship of invention? I think I just melted :O THANK YOU SO MUCH

I'm so happy and honoured to receive this review! Thank you so much once again ♥ And GO TEAM BLACK WOO ♥ ♥

-teh


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Review #13, by GubraithianFire not quite her name

3rd May 2013:
justonemorefic just showed me this and at first, as I'm sure you can imagine, I was veeery hesitant because it's about 10,000 words long, but she was quite insistent and I was certainly curious about this crazy long Lavender Brown one-shot. I do love minor canon characters like her but it's so hard to find fics that get them right, so I hardly ever read anything about them. This, though -- this was beautiful. I was constantly reworking my way through your paragraphs, especially the ones that ended sections, because they were just straight-up gorgeous. And yet none of it was showy gorgeous, you know? It's not like you're beating the fact that you can string together these (Googling: synonym for gorgeous) breathtaking series of words over the reader's head; it never feels like you're trying to show us just how far and how splendid your imagery can go. It's subdued -- but obviously not, in places, like that psychotic Viola scene which creeped me out like whoa -- and so subtly complex that you can't help fall in love with it. I truly fell for Lavender first and foremost, obviously, whose voice you capture with a lyrical quality and a kind of airy eeriness that I haven't seen in a very long time; you have a light touch and an instinct for how to humanize and deepen these characters, like Parvati and Padma and Trelawney, without us feeling like their canon roots aren't there at all. The way you wrote this, the backstory you gave (I loved the quiet Padma/Lavender relationship, and that single moment when Parvati walks in on them right before the battle might be my favorite part because it's just a moment, and there's no time for an argument or tearful explanation) kind of melts into canon; it makes sense that we wouldn't see these things from Harry's point of view, and we see why he would essentialize and caricature these girls the way he did. It's just a very smart, deliberate, but light fic, and I adored it. Really well done~

Author's Response: hwahh

...I think I just stepped on my jaw which fell to the floor...

Right, this is such an intelligent and eloquent review and I really hope I don't come off as an idiot in this response :P I have no idea why or how this little (or very long) fic of mine, sitting at the bottom of my list of stories managed to pick up such attention and such fantastic compliments from you and justonemorefic but I'm just so incredibly grateful and honoured and gaaah. Thank you so much ♥ I completely understand your hesitance at reading such a monstrous oneshot; in fact, it's been quite some time since I re-read this story from start to finish because I know it well enough and it /is/ 9000+ words after all. That's what happens when I try to write someone's life from start to finish, encapsulating those moments that would be important for Lavender - and without too much generalised skimming. In my headcanon Lavender died (but I didn't mention this specifically in my ending, so anyone can interpret otherwise :P ), and because she died so unjustly I wanted to do her silly trivial life absolute justice. And that's sort of something I tried to explore here: the sensation of being alive itself, of being aware of being alive, and everything that is so incredibly banal, yet exciting and ultimately, human.

ACK SORRY I WANT TO MAKE SENSE BUT I DON'T KNOW HOW TO

Oh, goodness, I'm just so happy that the description and the word choice works for you, and that it fits Lavender's voice, maybe. I was very conscious about that - I wanted to be absolutely true to Lavender's voice but I also wanted to be descriptive in certain sections of the story; diction and sentence structure were kinda crucial in this fic. And, lightness of touch with the narrative is /precisely/ the effect I was aiming for with this fic, so thank you so much for commenting on that ^.^

Also, humanising ALL the characters is also something I was going for. And I'm incredibly flattered that you were able to empathise with the more minor characters (Trelawney, Padma, Parvati etc.).

Thank you so much for this amazing review kfjasahgsda I'm a complete mess of feels here. This review has made my next weekend ♥

-teh


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Review #14, by justonemorefic not quite her name

2nd May 2013:
oh I love this SO MUCh. My favorite thing is when authors dig way past canon and write something that has reminders of the original material but is wholly their own. Lavender - I've grown a huge soft spot for her over the years amongst the Harry Potter minor characters. I could hear her voice throughout so well, light and dreamy and hesitant at first breath, but then wildly courageous and alive. I'm not the best at gushing over writing styles as I am with characters, but your words are like poetry, but the kind that I can imagine coming from Lavender Brown. They fit and flow with her voice, which is a very rare quality when it can easily go over the top and sound like some poncy narrator.

I did a little wooop over the bits with Ron, because as much as I like Ron, he treated her terribly as a boyfriend and he can't complain about having an annoying girlfriend when he's mooning over another girl and was pretty piggish. Looking at how the silly things like Won-Won started so innocently, omg that was hilarious. I love that in the end their break up wasn't a Big Deal in this story and Lavender tried and griped to the girls and that was that.

And the bits of talent revealed in the eyes of Trelawney and Firenze, and just the whole general cast. Everyone was more human (or centaurish, I suppose) which is such a necessary quality in a fic about war, at least framed in this way. I was invested in everyone. In the books, it's easy to brush off Trelawney as batty, the Patil twins as annoying, and Firenze was forgettable for me, but here, I wanted to listen. Here, they were important.

And there's also this delicious mess, in that wonderful slice-of-life way, of conflicts and questions and relationships that tangle with each other and ebb in and out of Lavender's focus that is really hard to manage, but you got that tangle out in a story and turned it into a life - Lavender's life. I feel like I keep saying the same thing, but I just really want to tell you how much I appreciate how this story feels like I walking through her life with all the important details and insignificant details that feel important because of the way she tells it - and that's the magic right there.

It's 2:30am, so I'm off to sleep and I shall leave you this verrry rambly review~ oodles of love love love ♥

Author's Response: edhkajobgisdfk mmphsgf

OK will try to speak some english now

I start hyperventilating every time I get a surprise review for this long rrrammmblyy story of mine :O And eagh, your review touched upon some aspects of the story that are quite dear to me ♥ I love Lavender quite a lot too :) But I can't find many fics in which Lavender is treated seriously during her Hogwarts years. And I enjoy writing her precisely for all that idiotic Won-wons and her somewhat embarrassing relationship with Ron (during which he was a real meanie - I totes agree with you on this) and all the trivial stuff she goes through e.g. her pet rabbit dying. I really really like writing these sorts of slightly idiotic characters and sort of giving them depth and making them into very normal people with lives so normal that it's extraordinary. Eep, not sure if I'm making sense.

This story actually ballooned out of control :P I have plenty of deleted scenes. But basically, yeah, it's Lavender moving through different stages of her life, and through different relationships (family, friends, romance, not-romance).

AM SO HAPPY YOU THOUGHT THE LANGUAGE FIT WITH HER VOICE ♥ I was /trying/ my best not to sound too poncy! I stuck to really really simple sentence structures and probably went overboard with the sentence fragments in some parts.

And yay, the other characters caught your attention too! This is such a huge compliment for me that gaaahkjs. I worked pretty hard to make sure that the minor characters in the fic weren't /too/ marginalised, even if Lavender is the main focus. And I'm glad that the Patils, Trelawney, Firenze all had a rightful place in this story.

omg thank you sososo much for this wonderful and absolutely unexpected review! And for all the amazing praise you've snowed down on me ♥ Absolutely made my weekend!

-teh


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Review #15, by dreamer21 not quite her name

27th April 2013:
Hi there,

I'm here from the review tag.

I am in awe of this story. Its brilliant. I mean woah. Like WOAH. It's like it happened in front of me and it makes so much sense.

Sad endings always get to me. Why so sad?
Your writing style totally complimented your story.

I don't have an CC's other than the fact that this was outrageously long and I was getting a tad bit annoyed in the start and I don't like Viola. She takes me to an edge and a pointy one!

You my friend are gifted. I have read so many amazing stories by such talented writers and you are one of them so be proud of it!

Love
Em

Author's Response: Thanks for your lovely review ♥ I'm a little surprised you chose the longest piece on my page to read *shrugs* I know it's long. And Viola wasn't intended to be the sweetest kid so glad I achieved something there.

Thanks again!

-teh


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Review #16, by CassiePotter not quite her name

23rd April 2013:
Hello teh!
Wow, this was such a beautiful piece of writing. It was absolutely incredible. Definitely one of the most amazing stories I've read. I can't pick out a single thing that could make this story better. So I'll just gush about how brilliant it was.
I loved how you opened it, because we got an amazing sense of how Lavender's life was before Hogwarts. I felt bad for her, honestly, because her mother seems a bit out of it, and her cousin is just scary! When she pushes the bookshelf on her and then presses down... I got chills. And the way she just smiled was creepy! That's one of the many images I got from this story that are just haunting. You wrote those descriptions so beautifully that there was never a single moment in this story that I couldn't picture what was going on in Lavender's life.
And then she goes to Hogwarts! There's such a contrast between her home life and her life at Hogwarts. I feel like she's one of those people who's meant to be at Hogwarts, if that makes sense. She just seems so much more at ease there. And she has friends, even if they're ridiculous together! I loved the way Lavender is so silly on the outside, but seems so mature through the way you've presented her thoughts and opinions. The voice you've given her just seems so much older and wiser than who she is at Hogwarts, and I think that shows how much she grows as a character.
And then there's Ron! Haha. Even though we're seeing him through Lavender, I think you got his character so well! It was spot on! I actually sympathize with Lavender here, because you've shown how hard she's trying to make it work, and how she isn't just a silly girl who's jealous of Hermione. She just doesn't know what else to do. There's something really real and that, and I think you captured that beautifully!
I know I'm skipping around a lot, but Padma and Lavender. Let's just look at that for a second. It's a pairing that I would never expect, but that I really enjoyed in this story! Another instance where I'm just bowing down to your writing abilities! The way that they transition from barely knowing each other to being friends, and how they're so different, but just mesh so well, is brilliant. That just sets up their relationship so well, and everything about the two of them together just feels natural after that. It's so easy for me to see them together through their last year of Hogwarts, and getting through the battle together, because you can just tell that Lavender wants to protect Padma, and that she really loves her.
The end of this one-shot was absolutely gorgeous. I don't even know what else to say about it other than that it was incredibly beautiful.
This one-shot was wonderful, and had so many layers that I could read and reread and just pick at it for hours, because there's just so much wonderful stuff there that you've written so fabulously!
I haven't even gotten all my feelings out, but this review is starting to get rambly, so I'll wrap it up. This was phenomenal, and I loved it! Amazing, wonderful, stupendous work. 10/10
Cassie :)

Author's Response: Hello Cassie ♥

...so basically I just squeeed my way through your review :P

This is such a lovely surprise! Thank you so much for taking the time to read this (very) long oneshot of mine, and for leaving such fabulous compliments! It's been quite a while since I wrote it, so reading your detailed review going through all the stages of Lavender's life made me remember the whole process of writing it.

Indeed, Lavender's hardly the most popular character in fanfic no thanks to the negative portrayal of her in the books. But I think these are the sorts of characters I like writing most - I like to write the other sides of people, if you get what I mean :)

Yeah, Lavender doesn't have the easiest of home lives. Well, it's not the worst, but there's generally a lack of warmth and affection from her mother, who constantly has a preoccupied air about her, and then there's the complicated relationship with her cousin, Viola.

Hogwarts is perfect for Lav Lav :) She has friends, falls in love, falls out of love - and generally experiences life. She's the sort of very lively person, someone who feels things very keenly, and who observes things closely and who's very tuned in to the present moment.

I'm glad you were able to sympathise with Lavender during her relationship with Ron :D That's what I was hoping readers would feel for her. Ron is always a bit of a jerk in the novels, in my opinion :P

And yeah, the Lavender/Padma ship just came out of nowhere when I was writing the story. But I really wanted Lav Lav to experience a more fulfilling relationship before the end of her life; I wanted her to experience this emotional extreme of bliss and young love. But their relationship does sort of break down a little in the end, though :)

I'm so glad you liked the ending! Gaah, Cassie, thanks sosososo much once again for this amazing unexpected review ♥ It means so much to me when someone leaves such reviews telling me they've really enjoyed my writing ♥

teh


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Review #17, by TheHouseElf not quite her name

5th April 2013:
Hi teh! Here from the review tag ;)

Wow. Just wow. This was an absolutely beautifully written one-shot! Your descriptions are consistently flawless within your work. They're original and grasp the reader. I see what Lavender is seeing with such clarity that if I didn't know that this was a piece of fiction, I wouldn't have doubted whether or not this is real.

I also loved how you went through Lavender's life from her youth to the Battle of Hogwarts. I've never liked her that much as a character, she's always seemed too much of an airhead for me, but you portrayed her as a flawed character who could never get anything right. Yes, she made fun of people, but she just wanted to be happy. You made me see her in another light which is the beauty of fanfiction ;)

I hate Viola with abundant vigour :P She's much too much like my little sister. Perfect in the eyes of adults, but as soon as their backs are turned she turns into something else altogether. The scene with the bookshelf made me really pity Lavender, I was actually spurring her on, willing her not to break in the face of the bully :P

The friendship between Parvati and Lavender is so wonderfully written. The best of friends, joint at the hip, so much so that even Seamus was starting to recognise! I also loved the relationship between Lavender and Padma. You wrote it so delicately and soft as innocent teenage romances often are. Slash can be hard to write, but you wrote it so beautifully! And again, I never questioned that Lavender/Padma was non canon, it just seems to fit.

I also loved the ending. Lavender and Padma's relationship cracking slightly as you'd expect it to in the face of a war. The way you wrote Lavender's death was again, well written and a tear jerker.

Great job! Adding to the favorites ;)

~Aisha

Author's Response: HAI AISHA

gah

Thanks for your absolutely lovely glowing review!

I never really cared for Lavender until I began writing this story. Then I started noticing her. That's why I love writing so much; it makes me notice things and people. Anyway.

*blush* I secretly love it when people compliment me on my descriptions :D So thank you so much! I'm really flattered and pleased that you enjoy them, and to mention that Lavender has been portrayed with "such clarity"! Gah akshdljkhpppqewiurcnjl :DDD

This isn't a coherent review response at all sorry.

Anyway, this story is partly meant to reflect the different relationships in Lav Lav's life - from family relationships to friendships to infatuations to something more to something not so much anymore. I really wanted Lavender/Padma to work out seamlessly but it didn't feel realistic to me. Because Lavender got a bit out of hand and started doing her own thing in my head and before I knew it their relationship was certainly weakening. So I'm glad you found that realistic :)

Thanks for favouriting this! And for leaving this amazing review ♥ You've made my night!

-teh


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Review #18, by soapman333 not quite her name

3rd April 2013:
I just realized that I favorited this story, but I never left a review...because I'm lazy and should be cast into a fire somewhere.

Right, I love this. You've got the two types of love that I'm familiar with, and that most people seem to not be able to decipher: obsession and companion.

Lavendar was a wee bit obsessed with Ronnie-poo wasn't she? I love it. I think we all have this relationship where the other person can do no wrong and we abandon our friends to drool over them. Ultimately, this relationship will fail, because it's hard on both parties.

Lavendar and Padma? Holy Hufflepuff, I was so surprised that I literally choked on my coffee. It's just so...perfect! I'm blushing just thinking about it *ahem* So...right, I like how their relationship started out friendly, turned romantic, and then finished off on companionate. Well, not really finished, they were really forced apart because of the war and such.

I'm sure everyone else has geeked out over the ending, but, here I am, about to make a big deal about it again. The ending couldn't have been more perfect. It left me on the edge of my seat, wondering if she survives or not! Geez...the feels.

Anyway, there is the belated review for your wonderful story :D

Jack

Author's Response: Hello Jack!

You have no idea how much this review made me grin like a fool :D

First, thanks so so much for reading this fic and reviewing AND favouriting ♥ I wasn't expecting this fic to get any more reviews because of its length but you've gone and surprised me there.

Yes, Lavender goes through different stages of relationships in the fic :) From mother-daughter-'sister' to friendship to childish infatuation and then to something a little more satisfying, though only for a temporary period. I am so glad you picked up on that!

And bahahaha! Lavender/Padma ♥ I see that it took you by surprise :P Nevertheless, I'm so glad that you liked the pairing (I think you did) and that you didn't think it was forced or silly or anything because face it, I'm absolutely rubbish at writing romance :P

As for the ending, in my headcanon Lavender died :( But I didn't explicitly mention that she did, so you can interpret that she recovered (somehow) from all her injuries and became a happier person hallelujah. I dunno, in the films she certainly was shown as dead. And even in the books, she did fall from a certain height, and then Fenrir Greyback pretty much ripped her throat out :(

THANK YOU SO MUCH ONCE AGAIN :D

teh


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Review #19, by adluvshp not quite her name

19th February 2013:
Here for review tag!

Wow, this was just so beautiful. You really have a knack of writing amazing stuff! So far, I have enjoyed all your stories, and I loved this one a lot too.

You have captured Lavender wonderfully and I loved the way you portrayed her and her life. I especially liked the "lithe and limber" section a lot as your descriptions were great. I also found the characterisation of her mother quite interesting. Lavender's relationship with Viola was also shown well. Good job!

I enjoyed the light you shed upon Ron and Lavender's relationship too, it was quite canon-compliant, and I liked seeing Lavender's take on it.

I immensely loved the distinctions presented between Parvati and Padma - you expressed them beautifully and the concept itself was quite unique.

I am not much of a slash person really, I avoid reading it, but this story was just so well-written that I didn't mind. So great work on your writing style/narrative, characterisations, descriptions, plot, and flow. It was all very intricately done and quite perfect. I had a great time reading it. You're truly a wonderful writer!

Cheers!
AD
(AditiDraco95)

Author's Response: AD :D

You are the first person who's read every single one of my stories so far, and so THANK YOU FOR ALL YOUR AMAZING REVIEWS :D Always happy whenever you tag me!

I'm so glad you made it through this monstrous oneshot. It's definitely far too long to be a oneshot :D And I'm so happy that you liked the characterisations in the fic! Glad you liked the story enough to not mind the slash bits :D

It wasn't the easiest, writing this fic, and I'm so grateful that you took the time to read it through and leave me such lovely comments! Thank you so very much once again :D

-teh


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Review #20, by ValWitch21 not quite her name

7th February 2013:
Hi!

I've got to tell you, before I say anything else, that I don't like Lavender much, having been incapable (like a majority of people, I think) to see past the in-love teenager she's depicted as.

But this makes her so much more. Her relationship with Viola, as a start, is incredibly realistic, which makes it even more terrifying.

I love the friendship you gave her and Parvati -- it compensates for the twisted incident with Viola, and definitely justifies the way JK wrote her afterwards, bubbly, laughing, a bit light-headed sometimes...

The twist with Padma is one I could definitely imagine, particularly with your build-up to it. All the pieces seem to fall perfectly into place, I'm quite impressed!

Then there's all the other traits you give Lavender: bravery, determination, all of these things that remind us why she was sorted into Gryffindor; and at the same time she's scared and unsure and so, so realistic...

I may be rambling a little here, but this was truly a wonderful introspection into Lavender's character, and I loved every word of it -- though did it have to end so sadly?

(I actually completely agree with your ending, it's only the fluff-hungry side of my personnality complaining).

Author's Response: Hiya Val and thanks for your lovely review :D

I'm glad you think my story goes beyond the general perception of Lavender as a silly, irritating character from the series! I love silly irritating characters, which is why I decided to write about her. Also, I'm always intrigued to find out why people are the way they are, or do the things they do.

Oh I'm so relieved you find that all the pieces fit into place. It is such a long fic I was afraid that I lost focus in several parts and things might seem to be a bit messy and all.

As for the ending...bahaha! You can interpret it otherwise :D I never mentioned that she died. Though in my headcanon, she did. You could always assume she survived and got better and everything. I was hoping for a hopeful ending, something not too angsty.

Thanks so very much for R&R-ing this story! It was a really long one and I'm so grateful that you chose this! And thanks again for your lovely compliments!

-teh


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Review #21, by The Misfit not quite her name

17th January 2013:
HELLO! As you probably worked out by my nomination of this for FAotM, (which was fully deserved btw) I read this this story back in December. I'd like to apologize for the ridiculous amount of time that it's taken me to come back and review; I wanted to give a review worthy of this story!

So: lithe and limber. I really like Viola - she's a lovely contrast to Lavender and instantly, her presence makes Lavender incredibly relatable, because the way that Lavender feels inferior in contrast to Viola is something that we've all felt at one time or another. Instantly, you turn a character that's seen in the books as a ditzy, unimportant schoolgirl into someone real, someone human. The way Viola treats Lavender is horrible, and your description of Mrs Brown's eyes makes me curious as to whether she suspects what's going on, but is pretending that the problem doesn't exist.

I caught a typo, btw: "Who cares. She'll never be yours." should have a question mark after "who cares". :)

The ending of that section was just so heartbreaking - I couldn't help but feel for Lavender, feeling so emotionally trapped by Viola. It seems such a contrast to what we see in the books, but it's still wonderfully canon because after all, Lavender isn't going to tell Harry, Ron or Hermione about her history. I really love this portrayal of her - there are so many fanfictions about her life after the Battle of Hogwarts, and not before, and I think that's one of the things that makes this one-shot stand out from all of the others.

In laughing, seeing, I loved how Lavender and Parvati became friends straightaway, and how they clicked instantly. Again, this was true to canon and after the darker aspects of Lavender's friendship with Viola, it was lovely to see her more positive and upbeat, and to see how attending Hogwarts has changed her life. The way in which Lavender mistook Padma for Parvati was amusing - the sisters just have such different personalities that getting them confused was rather surprising. (Sorry if I didn't make sense!) I also liked the explanation for why Viola wasn't a part of the story post-childhood; it had originally been one of the things I was going to point out.

I really liked lightning-struck, and how Lavender's relationship with Ron developed - the books being from Harry's POV so we don't really see it - and especially how she started calling him "Won-Won"! That moment was absolutely lovely, as it showed that Lavender was really happy and braver than she realized for being able to use a name like that in public. We also see the breakdown of Lavender and Ron's relationship, which I thought was a really nice touch and made the story realistic; that not everything has a happy ending.

I tried to hold on to his relief – to borrow it, just the smallest particle of it. This had to be one of the lines that moved me most - from an outsider's perspective, Lavender would have seemed desperate, but from her own viewpoint I can't help thinking that that sentence was more about hope than desperation.

And then we come to a lively sense, and it's really good to see Padma be more involved with Parvati and Lavender. I had been wondering earlier on in the story why Parvati and Padma didn't get along in their first year when we know they had a good relationship in fourth year, so it was nice to see that eventually they grew out of it, and Lavender's assurance that she could tell them apart instantly was proof at how much she's matured, to be able to notice and disinguish between the smallest of characteristics. Lavender and Padma's relationship was unexpected - I've never read a fic with this pairing before, but I have to say that I really liked it! The way that you developed their relationship and led up to their first kiss seemed incredibly natural for two schoolgirls.

I have to confess that the first segment of a lightness confused me slightly. You insinuate that Lavender's a pure-blood, as she's permitted to go back to Hogwarts, and with that deduction it seems that Viola's mother is related to the Browns through marriage - but then, why does Lavender refer to Viola's father as just that, instead of Uncle whatever-his-name-is? Furthermore, Lavender claims that the two families have never been very close - but they must have been somewhat close for Viola and Lavender to have grown up together?

Your description of Hogwarts in 1997-1998 sounded so incredibly canon - I know we never saw in the books what it was like, but your version is so believable. The way Padma and Lavender are hiding their relationship from Parvati, and her reaction, just made me feel for them - it can't have been easy for Parvati to have been a third wheel - and she must have known subconsciously, due to her behaviour - and for Lavender and Padma, lying to someone who they love.

You also described Fenrir Greyback excellently; the whole scene was just so frightening accurate that I could actually believe that I was there with Lavender. And the final section was just so beautiful and moving to read. I did notice a small typo in there: "There, – in just a tiny corner," - you don't need a comma after "there". :)

Those final two paragraphs were just so wonderful though; and that final sentence almost brought a tear to my eye. With that sentence, you don't just know that Lavender Brown is alive, you know that somehow, things are going to be okay. Because for me, those two lines are filled with hope.

This is an amazing one-shot, and you truly deserved to win that Featured Author award. It's so well-written, and I would love to see a sequel and find out what happens after the battle is over! XD This is just wonderful, teh! I know you want to cut it short, but don't - it's perfect as it is. ♥

Author's Response: OK, so I felt like someone had Stupefied me when I saw a new review for this story!?!?! And SUCH A LONG ONE AS WELL :DDD

Oh, thank you so so much! For taking the time to read and review, and for nominating it as Featured Story! I'm so so happy that you liked it and thought it was good; I've been having just so many mixed feelings about this story (and they get worse with time bahaha xD)

Oh, I take A LOT of liberties with punctuation. The second typo you pointed out (the extra comma) was indeed a mistake! Gah, need more editing! But the first bit with the question mark ("Who cares. She'll never be your mother...") was quite deliberate. It was originally a question mark but I didn't like the sentence to be a question so I put a fullstop instead. Bahaha! If you noticed, I also took out many many many semicolons and put in commas instead. Hence, comma splices everywhere! I've noticed that in some books I like, writers bend the rules of language and punctuation...and I've heard of some good advice that if a writer does it, you can do it too, as long as there is a reason. I do this because of the way I want the sentences to flow - they do have a certain sound in my head sometimes, especially when i write in first person. OK, am getting a bit rambly here...

I meant for Lavender's mother to come off as being distant and somewhat immersed in her own world among other things, but readers could have other interpretations, of course!

And as for the whole confusion about Lavender and Viola and their half blood muggleborn thing...ahaha I was clearly confused. I sort of mapped it out but didn't want to get all technical in the story so I left it out. I think Lavender and Viola are related through Lavender's unseen father and Viola's father (the one standing by the Portkey). In my mind they were brothers. And Uncle Viola's-Dad married a Muggleborn (Viola's sort of a Half blood, I guess). As for why Lavender says their families had never been close - well she's never been quite close to Viola's parents, and she and Viola drifted apart when they started school. And Viola spending so much time at her place was probably some sort of formal arrangement between their parents...maybe Viola's parents had to work or something ahahha! At least that's how I saw it. Also, Lavender's the narrator - she has her own views and attitudes toward people and things :)

I'm glad you like the final part! For me, Lav Lav pretty much died, but you could interpret it otherwise. You wouldn't be wrong! You're right: either way, things may probably get better, though if she lives, she'll have all the scars of course. I was trying to write that end scene without making it too angsty xD

In fact I was trying not to make the whole story too angsty :) Don't know if I succeeded though...

Anyway, thanks so so so much once again, Katie! I'm glad you enjoyed this and nominated it and everything!Thank you again for the brilliant review and see you in the forums :)

- teh


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Review #22, by caoty not quite her name

14th January 2013:
Hey, it's me from tag, sorry it took so long.

Oh, dear. This is so beautiful and so emotional and yet half the time it goes completely over my head. I will try my best to not completely misinterpret it. (That's not criticism, by the way; I'm just not too bright.)

Well, from this fic, it's easy to tell that Lavender is, in fact, very alive. Your descriptions' focus on voices, fruit and light - all very associated with life, of course, that's why you chose them - are all (obviously, because it's you) remarkably well-crafted, so much so that this fic feels less like a written account of her life and more like as if we're watching it through her own personal lens, which is something I really admire in fiction writing as a whole.

Your use of sounds and alliteration, especially in the subtitley things (lithe, limber, lightning-struck, a lightness...) are lovely - because, of course, they sound like 'life' and 'alive'. I'm not sure I fully understood them, though; they sound good and they're connected with their sections if you squint a bit, but then that just makes them seem like decoration for a fic that I'm not sure needs it... I don't know.

Your use of light imagery... bloody hell. You've got the overall move from daytime to night to daytime, which is obviously something to do with Lavender Brown being alive that I haven't quite grasped yet. Divination is associated with both light and dark, which is to with erraticness and disintegratio and the like. (Incidentally, I feel like I'm trying to read tarot cards right now. I did say I wasn't too bright... sorry if my coherency is nonexistent.)

Anyway. Moving on. Both your OCs and your canon characters fit in well, and the way you've handled the ships in particular. I've never understood the Lavender/Ron ship myself, but you make it clear why she'd be attracted to him - he's awkward and growing, he's just as alive as she is in his own way. And Lavender/Padma is not a ship I've read before, but it's lovely. Both of these ships are meaningful, but they're still essentially true to Lavender - it's not twoo wuv at first sight or after a three-month relationship, no matter how much she wants to believe it is.

Okay, and there's so much I've missed in this review, I know, but this was amazing. Well done.

Author's Response: Aah, always find your reviews so amazing :DDD

I thought you fell asleep while reading this because of its insane length :p It's the longest thing I've ever written in one go and I'll never ever do it again. Arrgh. Arrgh.

and there's no such thing as misinterpreting my stories bahaha! that's why I don't usually say things directly or go straight to the point or tell a lot of stuff or something like that. well, what I usually try to do is create a scene or something and throw you the reader in there and let you figure out on your own. and I'm ALWAYS curious to find out what the reader infers or how things are interpreted. I don't believe that author intentions should be treated as the gospel truth and that whatever writing that's been made public is pretty much in the hands of the reader :DDD



I think I overdid all the imagery bit bahaha xD I couldn't get the idea of fruit out of my mind. I just. Couldn't. So I put it all in. And you're right about sounds and alliteration, especially for the titles of each segment. They're not that well-thought out at all (I was trying to post up before queue closure)...and I just couldn't think of some bloody titles...so that's why they come off rather forced and unnecessarily alliterative!

Oh I'm glad you thought I handled the ships well! T'be honest with ya, I did not enjoy writing the romance bits at all xD I spent those entire two segments of Lavender/Ron and Lavender/Padma cringing and feeling reaallly foolish. I quite /hate/ writing romance. Those bits were the first time I ever ever ever tried romance and gah...RL is so...unromantic and all shades of awkward and never happy in their endings... :( least for me bahaha! I originally intended Lavender to have a more fulfilling relationship with Padma - a happy complete one, to make up for that rubbish relationship with Ron - so there's a real sense of fulfilment of that aspect of her life or something like that. But as you can see my ambivalence toward romance really manifested itself and I sort of undid everything in the final segment. Bahaha! I'll never be able to write long fulfilling love stories xD

OK, thanks so so so much for this amazing review. I'm so glad and relieved that you like this story even though it needs to be cut in half! See ya in the forums :D

-teh


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Review #23, by MrsJaydeMalfoy not quite her name

3rd January 2013:
Wow. After reading this I am really, truly just speechless. This piece is just so full of emotion; happiness, sadness, fear... it's really brilliant.

You've given so much depth to Lavender's character here. Everything from the way her mother taught her to dry flowers to her attraction to Ron because he was different is just amazing and it all works together so perfectly! I know this was only a one-shot, but you've provided so much information and detail here that I honestly feel like I've just read an entire book about Lavender's life.

I kept leaning closer and closer to the screen as the story went on; it truly is enthralling. I was afraid of the ending because I had an idea of what would happen, but you wrote it in such a way that it wasn't too gory or terrifying; it was perfect.

I read your author's note at the beginning, but I honestly didn't notice any errors at all! I think you did an OUTSTANDING job with this, and it's going in my favorites!

AMAZING JOB! 10/10!

Author's Response: Hello Jayde!

Eeee you've just given me such terrific compliments I don't even know what to say!?! Ah, thanks so so so much! For reading to the end (I know it was a long story and I'm still amazed I got reviews at all that I didn't have to request for :))

I wanted to really give Lavender life :D Because she's treated so unfairly in the books :(

And so I'm really happy that you liked this and favourited it as well!! Wow, thanks so much! Hugs to you :D

-teh


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Review #24, by Violet Gryfindor not quite her name

1st January 2013:
With a story like this, it's hard to decide where to begin a review. It's not just a story, but a life. You give Lavender completeness, an existence outside of that rather silly girl in HBP who receives mostly passing references in the other books, someone many people seem to dislike. Your vision of Lavender makes her real, a girl who happened to have crushed on Ron Weasley, even if she was really meant to love someone else. She has a family, dreams and aspirations, a whole world outside of "Harry Potter". All of this makes it a thousand times more tragic when it's all snuffed out in the blink of an eye. She's fearless and amazing, words that few, including myself, would not think of using to describe Lavender Brown.

You do a brilliant job with the characterizations, not just with Lavender, but also of the Patil sisters and Trelawney, all characters that deserve more attention in fanfiction. Even if they don't take centre stage, you still give them fantastic depth through Lavender's words. These characters have a lot of potential, and it's great to see someone explore that potential as well as you have here.

When I first saw the length of this, I didn't think I could make it through, yet once I started reading, it was very hard to look away. It didn't feel very long - it helped that you divided the narrative into those separate scenes, but there was also something about your style that just flowed really well. The descriptions and emotions were intense, but the pace was well-measured, and that's a challenging thing to accomplish with a story like this. It's amazing to see and it makes me excited to read more of your work.

It was a pleasure to read this story and have made its banner! Happy New Year!

Author's Response: Hello there Violet! Aaahh thanks for this amazingly wonderfully awesome review! And thanks again for the gorgeous banner and chapter image :D

A life is precisely what I wanted to write :) I wanted to write Lavender's life from when she was a child to her moment of death. I didn't mean it to go so out of hand and swell out into a staggering 9000+ words! I'm glad and ever so grateful that you chose to read on despite the length of it. It was rather difficult to write seeing as I began to lose focus as the story progressed. It took me a long while to finish the story, but it seems like my efforts have paid of because you enjoy it :D And I'm so happy that you like the characterisation! I've been trying to keep Lavender true to herself, but at the same time write her with compassion, without judging her in any way. I sort of intended her to be sentimental and somewhat silly in this fic, but also courageous, sensual and aware. I don't know if I've succeeded in bringing those characteristics out in her.

The edited and tidied version (along with your chapter image) is now in the queue :)


Well, thank you so very much once again for your fantastic comments! Your review's completely made my night :D Happy New Year to you too!

-teh


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Review #25, by slayground not quite her name

31st December 2012:
Wow. This is very, very lovely, and I am really in awe of how you took a character that most people see as having been created for the specific purpose of being hated, and turned her human. I don't believe that there isn't a single person in the world who doesn't have some sort of redeeming qualities, and with Lavender you showcased them quite wonderfully.

Normally I don't read slash, not because I dislike it, but because I just never think to actually read it. But this story has encouraged me to read more, because it was so, so lovely. Their relationship felt so real, so pure, and it was a wonderful thing to read.

Really well done, I must say. You took a character that was despised and made her someone who could easily be loved, and I applaud you for that.

10/10 :)

xx Molly

Author's Response: Hello there Molly!

Thank you so much for your wonderful comments :D This story is actually an entry for your Villain Redemption Challenge (I got assigned Lavender Brown...and I happened to be writing this so yay). The edited version is now in the queue and when things have been tidied up a little bit and validated, I'll post the link in your challenge thread as my submission :D

So I'm so very glad you find Lavender human and that you are able to empathise with her! This wasn't the easiest story to write given its insane length and I did lose focus along the way. It means heaps to me that you found this enjoyable! Also, I'm thrilled you think the Lavender/Padma pairing is "so real, so pure". Bahaha I have never ever ever written any sort of romance in my life and this was a first and I'm so glad to hear that you like it!

Thanks once again :D

-teh


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