Reading Reviews for Falling into Darkness
32 Reviews Found

Review #1, by Rumpelstiltskin Regulus Black

16th March 2014:
Blackout review 8/20!

Plot/plot arch: This has to be one of my favorite justifications of all, though it does fall in similar categories to other two chapters. Regulus wants to feel accepted by his family, because he's too afraid to be anything else. With the Sirius' departure, Regulus lost the person that he idolized, and possibly the person that could make him feel confident about perhaps not following family tradition. With increasing pressure from his mother, who is suffering terribly because Sirius is a failure to his family, it understandable that Regulus would have to fall into suit and pick up what his brother's role was supposed to be.

Characterization: I love this portrayal of Regulus, love, love, love it (similar to how I would hope it would have been). You also nailed Walburga as a suffering mother, which is absolutely fantastic. Severus is my favorite character, so I tend to be overly critical when it comes to his characterization. You've come pretty close to cannon, and I think you did a wonderful job with him!

Detail: This chapter did lack a bit of setting descriptions, but it didn't take away from the story at all.

Emotion: I will always feel bad for Regulus, and this really pushed that feeling for me, so I think you've nailed it.

Other/Notes: This one is my favorite &heats; ! Though, I may be a little biased because this one is about Regulus! At any rate, this is fantastic! Actually, all of your stories that I've read so far are great!


Author's Response: Hi! Thank you very much for your review! I'm so sorry about not replying sooner.

Your review brought a smile to my face as I read it. Thank you!

Thank you again for your lovely review!


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Review #2, by Rumpelstiltskin Draco Malfoy

15th March 2014:
Hey again! (Blackout number 7/20.)

Plot/plot arch: With Lucius being sent to Azkaban, his failure a mark on the Malfoy name on *both* sides of the war, Draco -- and Narcissa as well, for that matter -- is facing an extreme amount of pressure. Like you stated, he was popular; he was a Malfoy. Being accustomed to a glorified lifestyle, this transition must have been incredibly difficult for him, which you've captured nicely. Draco was under an extreme amount of pressure that drove him to redeem the Malfoy serve Voldemort. This is a very good replication of the figurative fall of the Malfoy family.

Characterization: I think you've definitely covered Draco nicely, dealing with his situation. The fact that he really wants to redeem his name, to save his family, is a really strong characteristic that you're portraying fantastically here, even if his route was perhaps not the best option. Narcissa is portrayed just as motherly and victimized as I would imagine she would be, so I think you did a great job on that as well.

Detail: While there are minimal descriptions of his physical surroundings, a few thrown in for flavor, it suits this particular story very nicely as this focuses on Draco's deteriorating mental and emotional states. I think that in depth detail and descriptors could have taken away from this, so seasoning the descriptors in lightly was a very brilliant option in my opinion.

Emotion: You did a wonderful job at portraying Draco's sufferings that led him to become a Death Eater.

Other/Notes: Another wonderful chapter, I can't think of any additional comments or suggestions, so there you have it :D.


Author's Response: Thank you very much for your review! I'll add my apologies again for not replying in a timely manner.

I did write down a few notes on how to improve this chapter from your observations.

Thank you very much for the lovely review!


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Review #3, by Rumpelstiltskin Gellert Grindelwald

15th March 2014:
I'm here for Blackout Bingo (number 6/20).

Plot/plot arch: The plot comes across very aggressive, which is fantastic because it makes it powerful. From the beginning, you've set a foreboding mood, that only escalates. The penguin struck me as odd at first, but then I realized the connection between Ariana and the penguin, which revealed the symbolic meaning. Once I made that connection, it came across brilliantly. His remorse in the end and the disappearance of the penguin was truly a powerful element that you included.

Characterization: I think you hit home with Grindelwald's vision of what things should be, and his desire and drive to make that happen. I really love his torment in this, and I think you did a wonderful job.

Detail: The imagery is absolutely spectacular in this. I really loved the symbolism found in this, with the barren clearing, the man, the darkness, and the penguin. Those images also set a brilliantly melancholic and vengeful mood.

Emotion: You've conveyed some strong emotions in this. At first, of terror, and then of extreme remorse. This was done fantastically, of course.

Notes/Other: This was wonderful! I've been wanting to read a story on Grindelwald, but haven't happened to stumble across one until now!


Author's Response: Thank you very much for your review! I'm so very, very sorry that it has taken this long to reply. Real life. :(

I do appreciate the in-depth analysis that you gave me for this chapter. I considered for a long time how to include the penguin into the challenge. :)

Thank you again very much for the lovely review!


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Review #4, by snowy_owl Regulus Black

3rd September 2013:
This is definitely my favorite chapter! I really enjoyed your characterization of Regulus. Nice job!

Author's Response: Thank you very much!

It is interesting writing on the different characters first steps into becoming a dark wizard.

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #5, by snowy_owl Draco Malfoy

3rd September 2013:
I particularly enjoyed the second half of this chapter, I felt like it was really engaging and well written. However, I wanted a bit more as far as Draco's personal motivations. We never really get to hear what Draco is thinking - he is fearful, but does he really want to be a Death Eater? Is he just trying to protect himself, his family or does he really believe in Voldemort's cause? Just some food for thought! Great job.

Author's Response: Thank you very much!

Those are very good questions and I'll think how to improve my story to include more of Draco's personal motivations and thoughts.

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #6, by snowy_owl Gellert Grindelwald

3rd September 2013:
Great job with your descriptions and detail. You definitely have a talent for description. I enjoyed this chapter a lot, but I was a bit confused about the stuffed penguin. It felt a bit forced at first, and then seemed to make more sense, but there wasn't really a point where it felt totally natural. Nonetheless, it was very well written, and I enjoyed your imagining of Grindelwald's decent into darkness. I look forward to reading your other chapters!

Author's Response: Thank you very much!

This chapter was written for a challenge and the hardest part of it was including the penguin. :) I'll work on it a bit more and see if I can't improve how the penguin fits into the story.

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #7, by UnluckyStar57 Draco Malfoy

17th July 2013:
Hi! I'm here with that review that you requested a few weeks-ish ago. Sorry for the delay! :)

First of all, I really like how you've delved into Draco's perspective. He has a rather bleak outlook on life, and that's very understandable, considering his circumstances. The scene in which he met Voldemort was excellent. I can't say enough how great it is to see the villain's perspective!

Your grammar, spelling, and story flow are all very solid. Description is a tad on the minimalist side, which is totally understandable because of the mood you're conveying, which would be a grey mood (if moods were colors!). I could have used a tiny bit more description, but really, I'm just nitpicking. It was totally fine the way it was. :)

One thing that I would recommend you work on is varying your sentence structure. There were parts where the sentences were a bit too choppy for my liking, and it maybe interrupted the flow an infinitesimal amount. Again, this is a style thing, and I know that the truncated sentence structure kind of reflects Draco's mood and personality. It's really no major thing at all. This is me just nitpicking, because I can't find anything else to criticize! :D

This whole short story concept is such a great idea. I have really enjoyed reading and reviewing the two chapters that I've reviewed. :)


Author's Response: Thank you very much!

I completely understand, believe me! :)

I've added notes to include a more description and work on my sentence structure.

This concept came to me after I had written the first chapter for the challenge and I got to thinking about the other dark wizards/witches and wondered how they became dark.

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #8, by UnluckyStar57 Gellert Grindelwald

26th June 2013:
Hi! I'm here with the review you requested. :)

Okay... I've never really seen a story written from Grindelwald's perspective. It was really interesting to see his dark thoughts after the duel between him and the Dumbledores.

And, though at first I was amused by the penguin, I soon began to find it. Majorly creepy. Was that your intention? It certainly added to the story with its creepiness, but it was so unexpected because it was like, "Whoa, a penguin! That's weird!" It was a great effect, but I must ask why: Why was it a penguin, specifically, except for the fact that it was a part of the challenge? Was it Ariana's stuffed penguin that she hugged as she died? Was it a penguin figurine that sat on Mrs. Dumbledore's mantelpiece? I'd like a little backstory on our penguin friend, and that might give it a little more legitimacy.

I thought that your language choice was very appropriate--dark and creepy, well enough. You had a lot of very strong sentences that added a lot to the overall scene of the story. However, after a full chapter of great diction and powerfully-crafted sentences, I found your last sentence to be a little less than the preceding ones. I would suggest rewriting the last sentence, flipping it around and breaking it up to see what kind of greater effect you can produce. :)

This was a really interesting/creepy/solid opening chapter! It will be quite cool to see what Draco and Regulus get up to!


Author's Response: Thank you very much!

Yes, I wanted this chapter to be creepy and haunting.

I'll revise the chapter to include more of a link between Ariana and the penguin.

I'll also work on that last sentence to make it stronger. Thank you for pointing it out!

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #9, by Jchrissy Gellert Grindelwald

26th June 2013:
Hi there! Happy review exchange! Haha!

There were a lot of difficult prompts in the gryffie challenge and I'm so impressed with your ability to include them in the story still make sense and not seeming like it was built to for the criteria.

Gellert stories are so few and far between that I gobble up any chance I can get to read them. I loved the fact that this related strictly to Gellert's own feelings and wasn't revolving around his feelings for Albus. It was a sad look into someone who apparently had no feeling toward his actions at the time, but a realistic one.

Tying in his later years, when the penguin finally is able to disappear after Gellert's guilt was able to creep up with him, was also a really nice touch!

I think it would have been fun to maybe tie the penguin more into Ariana. Like Gellert's realization it is identical to a charm she had or something. I get that it's sort of just a creature right now that's embodying her traits and making Gellert bring forward some amount of guilt even if he doesn't recognize it, but connecting it even more with Ariana might be nice ;).

I really loved the detail about him knowing he killed her. It almost sounded like he did it in purpose, and I like that so much more than one of Albus's curses being the reason.

Awesome job on this first chapter, m'dear!

Author's Response: Hi! Thank you very much!

Out of all the choices, I picked the penguin first. :) But it was an interesting story to write.

I'll work on revising the chapter to link the penguin with Ariana better.

I really like taking the missing moments from the books, expanding them and linking them back into the book. :)

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #10, by MadiMalfoy Regulus Black

16th June 2013:
Hello again! :)

Ahhh Regulus! I've read hardly anything about him, but I do think he's a vital character because of the whole locket thing in HBP. But anyway, about your writing of him! I think the story flow is decent enough for the time in his life you have it set at. I think if you slow down some and describe/explain some of his actions that would help with the flow a little bit. Just a few grammar and spelling errors that I noticed, but a quick proofreading will clean those up. :)

Description-wise, you have a wide variety. Which is good, because that means you're using different words to describe similar things and proper terminology as well. As for dialogue, the little you have is great! Severus doesn't speak much anyway and when he does it is short and to the point. Very close to canon! Voldemort's dialogue is good as well, but I think if you used the word "schoolwork" rather than "homework" that would sound more in-character because it's a British term rather than American term.

Other than the few things I mentioned above, a great chapter for Regulus! I'm excited to see more of them all, so feel free to re-request for incoming chapters! :) xx

Author's Response: Thank you very much!

I've added notes to slow down the story flow a little bit more and to describe his actions a little more. And I will fix those pesky grammar and spelling errors. :)

I will also change the "homework" to "schoolwork". Thank you for pointing it out for me.

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #11, by BellaFan202 Regulus Black

10th June 2013:
Hello! Got to this pretty quickly, if I may say so. :P

This was really good, I really enjoyed the insight into Regulus's decision to join to Death Eaters. It was especially interesting to me that he did it, all the while intending to betray the Death Eaters, to be a spy from the very beginning.

The chapter itself was very good. There wasn't a whole lot of dialogue, which was good because there wasn't a whole lot of opportunity for dialogue. There was definitely a good amount of description. I think you did a really good job balancing the two.

I really liked how Regulus fully admitting how he looked up to Sirius and was disappointed in himself for being a Slytherin, and was also keeping track of how long Sirius had been gone. I feel like that maybe if Sirius had made more of an effort to be friendly with Regulus after he had been sorted, then Regulus wouldn't have had to end up leading the life he did. I feel like you did a really good job portraying that.

The only thing I wish there was more of is how Regulus really felt about joining the Death Eaters. I mean, it's obvious that he didn't like it and that it made him uncomfortable, but there was never any real description like about how Regulus felt about waiting for Severus to get back to him about joining. If that makes sense. I would have liked to see more emotion in this, is what I'm trying to say. :)

Be sure to request the next chapter! :)


Author's Response: Thank you very much!

I've added notes to add more of Regulus' feelings about joining the Death Eaters and how he felt while waiting for Snape to get back with him about joining the Death Eaters. Thank you!

Kreature and Sirius had such differing points of view about Regulus, he had to fall somewhere in between.

If Sirius had paid attention to his younger brother, perhaps they would have had a clue sooner about the Horcruxes, which would have changed the entire storyline. :)

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #12, by ChaosWednesday Gellert Grindelwald

10th June 2013:
hey it's Whiskey here with your requested review!

I like Gellert stories, mostly because his arc is just so insane and tragic, and because his madness underlies much of what happens later, one way or the other. But we know very little about him - including any strong connection he may have had to stuffed penguins.

So, about the enormous stuffed penguin.Is that some sort of reference?
When you first mentioned it I had to go back and check if one of your subgenres was Humour.

Is there any particular reason you always called it "enormous stuffed penguin"? I suppose you must have done it on purpose because you were consistently not adding any other adjectives to it. And while I find that did add a certain creepy unrelentlessness to the image, I couldn't really get a grip on any thematic or metaphoric significance that it may have. What does it mean to Gellert? Does anything about it except its persistent presence bother him? It's just so un-harrypotter-y that I felt the penguin needed quite a bit of help fitting into the universe.

That said, I found your descriptions of Ariana trully haunting and wonderfully described! The way the visions rely on the movement of a cloud over the moon and the way her voice and her lip-movements don't match - those were some disconcerting details that really set the mood for me. I also liked the rythm towards the end where she just keeps on repeating that he should not lie. I could really picture it!

Also, the setting of the clearing that was being choked by the trees and that remembered a Dark Event was wonderful.

Ok, basically, what is it with the penguin!! I can't get over that penguin XD Everything else had this carefully constructed ghostly undertone to it - except the massive toy just standing there. I couldn't stop thinking of Miyazaki's Spirited Away. That sort of absurdity would fit very nicely with his style...But for the effect to work, you really need the rest of the world you create to support it somehow, you know?

Well, I hope this review is somehow helpful. And I hope I didn't make a fool of myself but not getting some cannon insider thing about penguins and Gellert Grindelwald.

Author's Response: Thank you very much!

The enormous stuffed penguin was the "Thing" for the challenge. I have reworked the penguin to describe it a little better rather than just repeating that it was an enormous stuffed penguin. :)

I was seeing the penguin taking the role as the physical manifestation of Gellert's guilt.

I will consider how to include the penguin into the storyline better and how to connect the penguin to Ariana better. I've also added in notes about showing what the penguin means to Gellert.

Thank you! I've done a fair bit of revision for Ariana in this story, trying to add in her child-like innocent view of the world.

It was intriguing to craft the setting. I wanted the reader to feel as if they were truly there.

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #13, by Calypso  Gellert Grindelwald

8th June 2013:
Hello! I'm here from the forums!

Ooh a Grindelwald story! I think there's so much scope for interesting pieces of writing about the events with him and Dumbledore, so it's great to see somebody exploring that- and you did a great job of it!

I loved the description of the clearing in forest at the beginning. It was so spooky and atmospheric with the trees and the darkness and the mist; I could just picture it my mind. "No creature and no animal had stepped foot or paw in this clearing" was my favourite line there, I think, as it really showed what a dark place it was.

You really managed to get inside Grindelwald's head during this, and interestingly, I didn't feel that he came off as a completely bad person, and certainly not one without a conscience. I like the idea that he would be haunted by Ariana afterwards, and try to escape the responsibility for her death- that seemed to fit with his character.

So, the enourmous stuffed penguin. I did double take when I first read that! I understand that you had to fit it in for a challenge, but it was quite a contrast with the darkness of the rest of the chapter, and gave the whole thing a rather comedic feel... That said, I really liked the idea of it as a manifestation of Grindelwald's guilt. I would suggest maybe varying the way you describe it? Or somehow linking it to Ariana's death, so there's a reason *why* it's a stuffed penguin?

But your ending was just perfect! Grindelwald's stand against Voldemort fits beautifully with the way you've characterised him here, and I do like the idea that he redeemed himself somewhat right at the end. I was a a great idea to include it!

Overall, I thought this was a very spooky, well-written chapter!


Author's Response: Thank you very much!

Grindelwald was interesting to write as the protagonist. There is so little written on him. As well as I haven't written a villain as one of my protagonists before.

I've added your suggestion of varying the penguin's description as a note in my chapter. I've been working on varying the description of the penguin. My first attempt didn't work, however, I've another idea that I'll be trying.

I've also added your suggestion of linking the penguin to Ariana's death to create the reason for the penguin's existence.

After reading how Grindelwald had stood against Voldemort, it seemed as if he had changed his views and had become remorseful for his actions before Albus had defeated him.

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #14, by CambAngst Gellert Grindelwald

5th June 2013:
Hi, there! Tagging you from the Review the Person Above You thread in the common room.

I liked the subject matter you picked for this story. I haven't read all that much about Gellert and the things that happened to him after the infamous duel in Godric's Hollow. Your vision of his mental state and the affects that his falling out with Dumbledore had on him seemed very well thought out and realistic. I never really thought of Grindelwald as the sort who would feel a great deal of guilt over the death of Ariana, but you sold me on the idea by the end.

The enormous stuffed penguin was a little hard to get my head around in the beginning, but it grew on me as the story went on. You obviously had to pick something that would be appropriate to a young, troubled but very sweet and sensitive girl. At the same time, it had to be menacing in a way. I think the penguin really fits the bill. My main thought as I read was that I wished you had varied your descriptions of the penguin instead of repeating "enormous stuffed penguin" throughout the chapter. Changing it up a bit would have added something, I think. For instance, you could have taken some opportunities to describe the color and texture and shape of the penguin. The look in its eyes or the curve of its beak. For me, anyway, I think you could have added to both the menace of the forest scene and the frailty of Gellert's mental state by going into more detail.

I loved your description of the forest clearing. There have to be lots of secluded, secret places in the Forbidden Forest. The idea is just so... forbidding! I did notice a small incongruity, though. When you first set the scene, you say that the canopy of the trees is such that the sunlight never reaches the ground. But later on, you talked about the shadow of the moon in the clearing. It was hard for me to reconcile the two in my head.

Ariana was such a haunting presence in this. I liked the way that you never strayed into having her be threatening to Gellert in a physical sense. She just makes it apparent that he will never know peace until he comes to terms with what he's done. I liked the parallel between the way that she haunted Gellert, Albus and Aberforth for the rest of their days, each in a slightly different way.

My only other suggestion is to be careful about repeating words or phrases too close together. For instance:

Following his duel with Albus and Aberforth, he quickly packed his meager belongings and quickly Apparated before either Albus or Aberforth could follow him. -- In this sentence you repeat both "quickly" and "Albus and/or Aberforth", which makes it read a bit awkwardly.

“You killed me.” Ariana called out, no laughter in her voice now. A dark shadow grew to stand before him before evaporating into nothing. -- You do something similar with "before" in this sentence.

Otherwise, I thought your writing was really good. I didn't see any typos or grammatical errors. Nice job!

Author's Response: Hi! Thank you very much!

Before the challenge, I hadn't thought much on Gellert except that Albus had defeated him in 1945. When I focused on the information presented in DH, it seemed that he had changed drastically from when the three of them dueled. Though I suspect most of the change happened after sitting in Nuremburg for nearly 50 years. :)

I've added a note to vary the description of the penguin. I wasn't certain when I wrote the story if I had to use the exact given phrase or not. It was a challenge to keep writing "enormous stuffed penguin" without adding a stray panda or two.

I've also added a note to fix the moonlight in the clearing. Thank you for pointing it out!

Ariana has such a sad story.

I've also fixed both sentences you have pointed out and will look for others.

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #15, by marauder5 Gellert Grindelwald

4th June 2013:
Okay, so I really liked most parts of this. Gellert's feelings were portrayed really well, and your descriptions of the setting in the very beginning instantly pulled me in. I like how Ariana was sort of a fraction of his conscience, and how she demanded that he'd tell her the truth in order to be free.

The Dumbledore family have such a tragic story. It was kind of a relief for me, in a strange way, to see that Grindewald was the one who killed Ariana, because I'd feel too horrible for them had it been Albus or Aberforth. So maybe I'll choose to believe your version, that Grindewald did it intentionally! It makes sense, because as you wrote, he wanted to git rid of her. She was in his way. It reminds me so much of the many people Voldemort killed, just because they were in his ways (James, Lily, Cedric, etc.) and that made it really powerful.

I understand that the enormous stuffed penguin was part of the challenge, but it did make it difficult to take it seriously at times. However, given the circumstances, I think you handled it extremely well. If I had tried to pull off something like that, it would have been ridiculous, I'm sure! So I have to congratulate you on that part, anyway, because it's such tricky conditions, and while it seems a bit out of place, it sort of works, in a way. It represents his guilt. I certainly think you have made the best of those circumstances you were given, so you should be content with it!!

I really enjoyed it. I rarely read any stories from Grindewald's POV, so it was very interesting, not to mention very well written!

Author's Response: Thank you very much!

I agree, the Dumbledore family had such a tragic story. I know Albus delayed going after Gellert because he feared that Gellert would say that Albus had killed his sister. I find it hard to believe that since there were 3 of them dueling, that they would not be able to tell which spell hit Ariana.

It was sometimes difficult to keep a straight face as I was writing. Once in awhile, an enormous stuffed panda appeared instead of the penguin.

This is a very different story than I typically write. Especially with the protagonist being the villain. That was a first for me.

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #16, by adluvshp Gellert Grindelwald

3rd June 2013:
Hey! Here for review tag.

This was a very interesting and engaging piece of writing. I loved your descriptions and they kept me hooked from the beginning until the end. I think you did a great job in characterising Grindelwald, as well as Ariana. The entire story had this dark mood and eerie tone which I enjoyed. The stuffed penguin was a strange addition but I guess it was some kind of reflection of Gellert's guilt? Nevertheless, it was all sort of creepy and enhanced the story and I liked it. Great work!


Author's Response: Thank you very much!

The stuffed penguin was the manifestation of Gellert's guilt. And it was also part of the challenge. :)

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #17, by BellaFan202 Draco Malfoy

31st May 2013:
Hi! So glad you requested this! Ah!

This was so good. I feel like you captured Draco perfectly. This was absolutely perfect and fit in well with what JKR wrote. I even went and read the part in OotP where the DA members hex and jinx Draco, Crabbe, and Goyle and it fit in so well with the book.

I feel like the way Narcissa and Draco react is great. Fear, not respect. Obedience, not trust. It feels so real to me.

I don't really even have any constructive criticism to offer, sorry. :/ But I guess that's a good thing for you. :P

That's about all I have to say. Thanks for requesting this and don't forget to request the next chapter whenever it's published! :)


Author's Response: Thank you very much!

I'm really glad that you enjoyed this story. It is an interesting challenge to write a dark wizard/witch as the protagonist.

I have a small collection of dark wizards/witches that I plan on writing about to start with. I do have one that will be ready soon - the story needs a little more polish.

I will certainly request when the next chapter has been validated.

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #18, by PitchBlue Draco Malfoy

30th May 2013:
Review tag!

I liked your introduction, it was very descriptive and immediately set the atmosphere. You chose an interesting moment to describe.

I think your take on Draco is very good - you've captured him well. Especially with those remarks as 'Saint Potter', it gives the chapter something extra. It's also interesting how you describe the changing sentiments to his friends, well done there.

I found this a very good sentence:

"His skin crawled being so close to her and he detested that she ruined his image of a grown man with her dragging him along as if he were a child in her delight to serve her master."

Just brilliant. You give a very strong description of Bellatrix with just one sentence.

So, I really enjoyed reading this, I'm curious about the other one-shots!

- PB

Author's Response: Thank you very much!

It has been interesting writing these stories with the protagonist being someone not necessarily considered good.

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #19, by nott theodore Draco Malfoy

29th May 2013:
Hello! I'm sorry it took me so long to get to this but since this has been my first day of freedom since exams finished, I've been out with friends and only just got back :)

I actually read the previous chapter of this when it was just a one-shot, and I think it's a really interesting idea to extend this into a short story collection and explore the ways different characters ending up following down this path.

It was actually a really interesting premise for the story - you don't find many people writing about Draco becoming a Death Eater and I definitely enjoyed reading it.

Characterisation definitely seems to be one of your strengths. I thought that each of the characters was written very well, keeping in line with their canon counterparts - Draco in particular. I felt that he had a lot of depth here, even though this was quite a short story. His conflicting emotions were clearly conveyed through your writing: the fear, the annoyance with his peers, the desire to prove himself. There was quite a serious undertone to his thoughts, as though his father's imprisonment had caused him to realise that there were bigger things than school, and that soon he would have to face things that he was wholly unprepared for. I also loved the way that Draco kept referring to Harry as "Saint Potter" - I could feel the sarcasm and contempt dripping from those two words, and it did seem to be exactly in character with the Draco we know from the books.

The other characters who played more of a supporting role in this story were also well characterised; they each had some depth to them, even though we saw them very briefly. Narcissa had the natural concern of a mother for her son, and I thought that you illustrated that well when she searched for them on the train.

Bellatrix was fantastic. I can definitely imagine Draco being scared of his aunt, especially when she's around Voldemort. It's like she's possessed by an almost religious fervour and I think that contrasts effectively with the "unholy glee" that crossed her face when she learnt her nephew would be welcomed into the fold.

I thought that you rounded off the story really well. I felt really sorry for Draco and it showed that he didn't have a choice in the matter, and was maybe as much of a victim of the war and the family he was born into as some of the Muggle-borns who died.

I noticed a few errors and mistakes:
"He could have cared less who won the Quidditch Cup" -- couldn't have
The sentence starting with "She had taken all three off the train..." needs an 'and' somewhere.

This story had great characterisation and description, and it was a really enjoyable read!

Sian :)

Author's Response: Thank you very much!

I got to thinking about all those other dark wizards/witches and realized I really should make this a collection of one-shots instead of having their own separate one-shot story. :) I do have a small selection that is in work.

I also get the feeling that Draco was caught up in events past his control.

I have made the two corrections you pointed out.

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #20, by Broken Butterfly Draco Malfoy

29th May 2013:
Interesting. I like it. I will say however that The start of teh chapter made it seem like it was the end of the seventh year, not after 6th year. I would consider revising that, Otherwise characterization, and flow is really good. I really think that you could run with this and write about the falling of each death eater to darkness. Good work.

Author's Response: Thank you very much!

This story begins just after the battle in the Department of Mysteries, which was at the end of the OOTP.

It will be interesting deciding when each of the dark wizards/witches became dark.

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #21, by Lululuna Draco Malfoy

29th May 2013:
Hello, I'm back for your requested review! :) Thank you for re-requesting!

I like how you expanded this to a short story collection, and the idea of exploring how wizards become dark is very interesting, with lots of options for originality.

I like how Draco went from being petty and a bully to realizing there are more serious things going on, and how this transition seemed to be spurred by his father's imprisonment. I feel sorry for him, having to grow up so quickly. However, I think you've got his character spot on here. I loved how he kept referring to "Saint Potter," and could really imagine his lip curling in disgust. It was funny how he noticed Pansy being annoying as well, like this realization is a part of adulthood as well.

I'm really glad you included the attack on Malfoy and his friends on the train, and how he got home. It's funny because it was just a minor mention in the book, but actually would have been quite worrying for Narcissa. That was a great addition, and you explained it very clearly and logically. The mental image of three giant Slytherin slugs in the luggage rack was great as well.

You described Bellatrix's character so well! I like how Draco was creeped out by her, and her strange, manic excitement around Voldy. Well done! :)

Aw, poor Draco not knowing what arm to be branded on! That was a great detail that I enjoyed. I feel sorry for him, as it seems in this chapter that it was circumstance and family which led him to becoming dark, not direct choice the way it was with Grindelwald.

Your characterization was definitely a strong point, and the story flowed very nicely. I would like to see a little more description, and instances of "showing," not "telling," Draco's feelings and environment. A little more physical description would round out the story well, I think. :)

Overall, great work! I'm curious as to who you'll write about next. :)

Author's Response: Thank you very much!

The idea came to me when I realized that more wizards/witches had gone dark, not just Grindelwald. I have a small selection of dark wizards/witches that are in work.

I had wondered at the end of the OOTP, when the three were found. Though I guess another question could be - were they slugs on the luggage rack in the same compartment as the DA?

I've made notes in my chapter to add more descriptions as well as show Draco's feelings and environment more than telling about them.

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #22, by BellaFan202 Gellert Grindelwald

29th May 2013:

That was interesting. I'm not sure I understand the purpose of the penguin. I mean, I understand that it's supposed to be threatening and such but... a penguin? Is there supposed to be some symbolic meaning to it? I don't know maybe I'm just missing something.

Don't get me wrong, this was really good. Really good. I was interested it what was going to happen. I was immediately pulled into the story, which smoothly went into the middle, which flowed into the end, which was nice. Everything was smooth and flowy. Very good.

Obviously, I don't know a whole lot about Grindewald, but from what I can tell, he stayed pretty in character the whole time. Same for Ariana.

I think you did a really good job balancing the description and the dialogue. I kind of could picture the whole scene, but it wasn't so descriptive that I was like "okay get on with it" you know. And I really love dialogue. You can almost never have too much dialogue with me. :P I do like description too, though, so I think you did a really good job with that.

The only think I can think of to say is that you missed a few commas here and there. I would recommend just reading over the chapter. There are only a few missing and none of them are too major.

Author's Response: Hi! Thank you so much!

The penguin is the Thing in the challenge. We had to select a setting (Forbidden Forest), a protagonist (Gellert), an antagonist (Ariana) and a Thing (penguin).

The penguin is the manifestation of Gellert's guilt. He can't run away from it and it only disappears after he feels remorse.

I've added the note to find the missing commas.

As a note, I can understand about stories being too descriptive. I had read one book where I was positive the author was describing each and every tree in the forest and took what seemed like 20 pages to describe said forest. Unfortunately, I had to read it all. Which is why I want to make certain there is balance between description/dialogue.

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #23, by MadiMalfoy Draco Malfoy

28th May 2013:
Here with your requested review!

The plot flow was very smooth, very well-done in this chapter! I think that it is very plausible in the way you wrote it so that Draco received his mission and Dark Mark at the same time. You showed his, and everyone else's, emotions very well with superb, defining descriptive words for each emotion. Such great description in this chapter as well!

Draco's characterization was very close to canon--so fantastic job there! I liked the bit of how he thought Pansy was annoying--he does end up marrying Astoria, so I think it'd be fun to put in a little snippet about how Astoria was so much less irritating, just to hint at the future. :) His fear being hidden by a mask of neutrality and confidence is spot-on! You wrote him very well, I think you should write some more Draco pieces in the future, you write him very well. :) Great job on this chapter! xx

Author's Response: Thank you very much!

I added a note to include a mention of Astoria as a hint.

I will definitely consider writing more Draco pieces. I've also added a note in my novel to include more of Draco than I have.

Thank you very much for reading and reviewing!

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Review #24, by Broken Butterfly Gellert Grindelwald

28th May 2013:
Interesting plotline. I love the description in here, it brings the scene to life. I'm really not sure what I think about the stuffed penquine but I guess that was teh point of The Challenge. I like your characters here, very good work.

Author's Response: Thank you very much!

For the challenge, the setting, a protagonist, an antagonist and a thing was chosen from separate lists. I chose the penguin first - I thought it would be interesting to write a story around a penguin.

Thank you for reading and reviewing!

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Review #25, by WeasleyTwins Gellert Grindelwald

26th May 2013:
Hello! Here for a bit of Gryffindor review tag!

This was for a challenge, right? What exactly were the parameters for the challenge, if I may ask? (I think it would be helpful for you to put that in your author's note :D).

Now, the stuffed penguin. Literally cracking me up - it's a great contrast to the enormity of the piece and the dark mood. I'd like to think that the black and white from the penguin symbolize the Dark Arts versus goodness and love. Even if stuffed penguin might be a comical bit, it could (and does) symbolize more in the story.

Your descriptions at the very beginning are great! Your dialogue between Ariana and Gellert is also good. Overall, I think you've got a good story here! It's very difficult to write a story around a challenge - sometimes they are amazing and sometimes it just fails. But here, I think you've taken what you were given and did a good job! It was a good read!


Author's Response: Thank you very much!

I've added the parameters for the challenge in an author's note at the beginning. But yes, this chapter was for the challenge. After I had written and submitted it, I realized that more than just one wizard/witch had become dark. So I changed it a little to be a collection of stories as wizards/witches took their first steps into darkness, whether they wanted to or not.

The penguin was used as a manifestation of Gellert's guilt.

This story was very interesting to write. Blending everything together was a challenge. And this is the first story that I've written where the villain is the protagonist.

Thank you very much!

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