Reading Reviews for Jigsaw Falling Into Place
  
21 Reviews Found

Review #1, by AlexFan One of the Boys

27th August 2013:
Sorry that it's taken me so long to get to this but I've finally managed to get some time. Anyway, onward!

So I was a bit skeptical going into this because I'd never read anything about Pansy before and I wasn't sure how I'd feel about this. No worries though, I actually liked it. I enjoyed going into Pansy's mind and learning about why she did things and was that way that she was.

I've been having trouble trying to think of how to write this review because I'm having trouble for putting it into words but I'll see what I can manage.

Pansy's idea of being bad, sounds to me like all she really wants is control. It's obvious in the way that she enjoys the fact that students hurry to get out of her way when they see her. She doesn't actually do anything to hurt them or anything at all to show that she's bad but she likes that feeling of power that she gets when they move out of her way.

I've actually come to like Pansy's character a little bit more because of this (but just a bit more, I still think she's horrible). Very few people out there go into the details of Pansy and her life or her thought process.

She sounds like someone who wants to be strong and independent and doesn't want to be confined to the usual mold that there is for pureblood girls/wives. I think the ending shows that her fight to be "bad" and strong and independent won't go down easy no matter how many times it comes close to fading.

That was my take on it, I don't know if it makes any sense (it doesn't to me but I hope it does to you) but either way, I enjoyed this one-shot.

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Review #2, by redraven One of the Boys

25th August 2013:
Dear ChaosWednesday,

First off, nice work delving into Pansy's motivations and way of seeing things. This was definitely fun to read, and I personally really like the ending. I think one of the things that might make it a bit confusing is that the reader doesn't know how old Pansy is in the second part. Also, one would think she wouldn't be that surprised by Malfoy's kiss and the subsequent events whether or not she'd ever experienced that before -- since she's so focused on being rebellious she's probably not a very sheltered child. (Unless she is? But that doesn't seem to be the case based on the first part of the story). I like how it ends though, with her emotional detachment and how she builds the story the way she wants to in her mind. It raises the question of how her power is attained, and whether it is through war against others or war against herself.

I think the narrative flowed quite nicely, and I appreciate that you've made it more chronological. It's not difficult to figure out what is a flashback and what is happening in the present. It's definitely well written, with clear scenes and illustrative descriptions. I love stories that really get into a character's psyche, so I'm totally a fan of this one! Really well done!

Best,
redraven

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Review #3, by ATLpaintingflowers One of the Boys

23rd August 2013:
ATLpaintingflowers with your requested review :)

I loved this! This was great, I feel like you really explored her character in this piece. My opinion on the end, I think it's a bit complicated to explain, but I'll try. In the story it said Pansy longed to be bad, and not be confined to her house, and the rules of society and such. When she was with Draco, it said she would try to remain perfect and such to gain his approval or whatever. That kind of went against her nature; to not be confined. So when Draco left; the idea slid over the memory, the fact that she did not want to be confined slid over the memory of her being confined with Draco. And the end where it said "For a few more years, Pansy would fight her war." Her war meaning, being free and not confined and bad, and her fighting it meaning for a few more years she would be single and then she would meet someone fall in love and maybe have children and be confined to a domestic lifestyle. Sorry if that made no sense whatsoever. Anyways this story reminds me a bit of the song Female Robbery by The Neighbourhood. But back to the rest of the review. I loved your descriptions, I could see everything perfectly in my mind, and it was not to overdone. I think you wrote Pansy's emotions perfectly and characterisation was done very well too. I feel like you really explored her a person. I thought the story flowed very well. Anyways I enjoyed this. 10 gold stars. :)

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Review #4, by academica One of the Boys

19th August 2013:
Hello, here with your requested review!

Okay, here's my interpretation of your story--tell me if I'm anywhere close to the mark. It seems like Pansy's idea of "badness" is really control. She wants to not only exist in her privileged world but win for herself a dominant place in it. She tries to buck the rules where she can while also holding tight to the things she thinks she needs--status, wealth, power, admiration, to be feared. And she seems cognizant of the notion that she might lose it all if she enjoys her role a little too much. I saw this piece as walking through Pansy's life and the way her role changed at different points. Now that she's growing up, she realizes that she has to give Draco what he wants in order to preserve her place, and she fights her war in a quieter way.

Personally, I liked the ending. It shows Pansy as a character with her own sense of strength, however self-serving and twisted that strength may be. She's adaptable, which seems essential for a Slytherin. It seems a bit odd for them to behave in that way in the middle of the open common room, despite it being empty at the moment, but I suppose it's all part of the joint boldness of the two characters. I liked the final line, too, because it suggested that Pansy's "badness" is like a slow burn that doesn't fade the first time it's threatened. She fights the war on her own terms.

I can't speak to how this story looked prior to your rearrangements, of course, but I can see how it would work in a less traditional style. Maybe the straightforward chronology helps ensure that it makes sense, but again, it's hard for me to say.

I couldn't identify any critical problems with flow or technical aspects while I was reading this, so that's good. I think you just have some readers who don't grasp more abstract endings--I've certainly experienced that for myself. I think it works well, and if you like it, I say stick with it as is :)

Nice work. Hope this review is helpful!

-Amanda

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Review #5, by 800 words of heaven One of the Boys

19th August 2013:
Hello!

When you asked me to review your Pansy one-shot, to be honest, I was a little sceptical. I'd be the first to admit that I'm not a big Pansy fan, but I think it's important to read widely, to broaden one's horizons! Anyway, I'm about three paragraphs in and I'm so glad that I'm reading this. I have like zero opinions about Pansy, but your writing - OMG! I don't think I've ever read anything from your repertoire, and I'm seriously missing out if this is the calibre of your work.

You had me grinning in wry amusement at Pansy's mother! What a drama queen! I loved her so much. The way her facial expressions were described and her dialogue, I could picture her in my head, in all her permed glory.

I love the voice you've given to Pansy. I can really see all the traits that make her the perfect bully, namely the intense desire to fit in, although she already kind of belongs, being part of the upper echelons of society. But there's something quite manic about her, reminiscent of Bellatrix and Umbridge. Excuse my complete lack of coherency, but what I'm trying to say is that she comes across as someone who genuinely believes in what she does to get to where she wants to be. For her, it's not just about the ends justifying the means - the means are just as important, if not more. [I just read over this paragraph, and realised it makes little to no sense, but here's hoping that perhaps you'll get what I'm trying to say].

Oh, my goodness! I was totally expecting her to break at the end. But she didn't! I never thought I'd see the day, but I have some weird kind of respect for her now. Because even though the experience was absolutely horrible, and she's probably deluding herself, she's not going to quit, and be it for all the wrong reasons, that's something I can admire.

I don't know if I've gushed over this enough, yet, but if I haven't, feel free to accept my further gushings! But seriously, this was a little piece of brilliant.

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Review #6, by blackballet One of the Boys

16th August 2013:
When I began reading this, I was not sure what to expect at all, and I'm glad to say I was happily surprised. I like how Pansy used to be more carefree, and that definitely carried your theme of the idea that bad changes when you grow older. Pansy is one of those characters I think we don't see enough of, and I think this was a great view into what her life would've been like. You are also a very nice writer, which helps me enjoy the story.

Thanks for writing so well!

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Review #7, by KiwiOliver One of the Boys

14th July 2013:
KiwiOliver here with your late review (I'm sorry!):
Wow, what a breathtakingly beautiful peace, with some beautiful descriptions and a really cool plot idea!
I like Pansy, I feel like she isn't looked at much and I like how you haven't made her the mean selfish girl she's portrayed at in the HP books/films.
You pulled off the mother/daughter relationship really well, I really liked that!
The end scene was also written really well! You have a flare for that kind of stuff!
You can defiantly tell your a film student :) You've written out a scene that I can imagine perfectly, it would take little effort to turn this into an amazing piece of film :) So well done on that!
Your story does make sense, so you don't need to worry about that, there's a couple of minor grammar mistakes but they've been mentioned in other reviews already I think, so I won't go into those.
Overall, I think this was a really great story and it dealt with a very sensitive theme at the end and you handled it really well!
I hope to see some more of your writing coming my way, and I'm sorry I couldn't give you much CC, I just really liked it! :)
KO

Author's Response: hai!

Ah, thank you! It is indeed a delicate and complicated topic. And I must admit I was worried that some of the attraction of the piece would get lost due to the large amount of "telling" i do, as opposed to the widely preferred "showing". But I did actually imagine the story as a sort of experimental film that consists mostly of vaguelly connected flashbacks in that (slightly overused) indie style - lots of blues and greens, swaying cam, awkward close-ups, focus issues :P So I guess it helped, haha!

Pansy was always fascinating for me. She is a tragic character and I never did quite buy the unconditional evilness. What got me most interested in her was that short scene in the train (beginning of 6th year) with Draco. Her one-sided affection for him was so sad and very telling. For someone so seemingly ruthless, her actions stood out as kind of delusional and almost lost. Her famous quote about Harry right before the Battle of Hogwarts only re-enforces that Pansy has a tendency to miscalculate social trends as well as her own influence. It's sad and pathetic, but I guess that doesn't really make her evil.

Thank you for your comments, I'm so happy you enjoyed the story :D


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Review #8, by marauderfan One of the Boys

4th July 2013:
Review tag!

I really enjoyed this piece. I haven't read much about Pansy - she's kind of an overlooked character who's rather one dimensional in the books; since we see her from Harry's POV she's always just "the mean Slytherin girl".

You added many layers to Pansy's personality and I think they fit very well. I can certainly see Pansy as the rebellious girl who always wants to stir up trouble and be noticed, so I think the scenes from her childhood were very fitting. As she gets older she's definitely living inside a bubble in which she sees herself as powerful; the younger students move out of her way, and she's not just a girl in frilly dresses, but someone to be feared/respected. But she's ignoring the things that go against her illusion of a perfect reality (the students only notice her when she pushes them, etc.)

I thought the ending was really sad. Even though she thinks she has so much power now, and isn't "just a girl", the scene with Draco shows how it's so easy to get used just because she craves acceptance. In a way this piece makes a pretty astute comment on power and gender roles in society as well.

Wonderful work on this!

Author's Response: Hey! sorry for the eons that it took me to reply, I'm so lazy sometimes!

Your review made me very happy as I was going for comments on gender and power-relations and I see that I managed to get it accross. Pansy is a wonderful example, in my opinion, of many things that are dangerous about the mechanics of society. My version of her is a walking paradox, rebelling against rules but too unsure to be able to create her own. She has no role model except the male ideal of power, and so she sets out on a quest that is doomed from the start.

I'm glad you enjoyed this and thank you for the review!


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Review #9, by Elphaba and Boyfriends One of the Boys

12th June 2013:
Hey, Elphaba here with your requested review! As a Radiohead fan, you had me intrigued with the title of this piece. :)

I like this story a lot, overall. There are a few little structural things that I might change, but the characterization and themes are all good, and it makes sense to me!

First off, I like the dialog from Pansy's mother, but I might put a period after the first "try" to emphasize the drama. "Darling, I try, I try so hard to teach you elegance..."

A little later on, something feels slightly off about the structure of this sentence: "...she remained aware of the one idea that mattered: that, briefly, all the pieces had aligned into their rightful places." I might replace the colon with a comma, and rewrite the thought after the colon to something like, "all the pieces had briefly aligned into their rightful places."

I really like this: "And so she rarely registered that her peers stepped out of her way only when she resorted to shoving and cursing them." I love the contrast that you establish here between how others see her versus how she sees herself. To me, this seems like the central theme of the story.

I also really like this: "Pansy Parkinson's life was accompanied by her own private theme song..." Everyone needs their own personal soundtrack. :)

I might condense these two sentences: "She lived in the moment. In many single moments, which she replayed over and over again in her mind until they fit together," into one: "She lived in many single moments, which she replayed over and over again in her mind until they fit together."

The timeline seems to bounce around a bit between pre and post puberty, and I might change the order of a few paragraphs to make it flow better. Mainly, I would move the section that begins with, "Once puberty hit," and ends with "what she was to do next," up before the paragraph that begins, "Years later." The "Years later" section would end with, "they fit together," and flow right into the paragraph that begins, "No matter what..." I think this ordering preserves the chronological order of the story, and helps to make it easier to follow.

I also might edit this sentence, "...she knew that there was no privilege in upholding rules when it were others that made them," to, "...she knew that there was no privilege in upholding rules made by others." I think the sentence flows a little better like this, and hopefully doesn't change the meaning! :)

One last small change: "children-rearing" to "child-rearing." I'm not sure why the singular is the correct spelling, but I've never seen the plural form used before.

There are a lot of elements to chew on in this piece, especially as it moves towards its conclusion. "For the most part, Pansy was sure she had successfully transcended her gender." Pansy seems to have fooled herself into thinking that she is different from her mother, that she's escaped the role that he is expected to play.

"'Take it off,' he commanded, eyes flickering over her robes." She makes an effort to remain oblivious to the fact that she is just playing another version of the accepted female gender role. I find this sad, but true.

This situation contradicts her earlier acknowledgement that enforcing others' rules carries no privilege. This statement is especially striking: "When Pansy was younger, it had meant something more simple, just a set of rules she could easily follow." The contradiction makes perfect sense if she has been deluding herself. Does she realize that she's just been following Draco's rules?

I've done a lot of nit-picking in this review, but I really did enjoy reading this story a lot. Everything I've pointed out is just a suggestion that you're welcome to ignore, of course. :)

Author's Response: Hey! Oh, don't worry about the nitpicking. This is the first one-shot I really spent ages working on and all that time must be good for something, right? It means I must strive to improve the piece as much as I can, and you've certainy helped!

I've actually taken your advice on the order of the paragraphs and let that isnpire me to change a few more things around. Also, I found your comment about Pansy's inner battle very helpful, as I now know I need to make it clearer.

The entire one-shot is based on the premise of her inner conflict and the numerous paradoxes that define her development. Pansy yearns to be different, but she is afraid of being powerless and so she never has the courage to go the full way towards freedom. Instead, she ends up trapped somewhere between being influential and being a follower. I tried to connect this idea with gender conflicts, because, well, I find the dynamic similar. There is no prescribed way for a woman to be powerful in a male-dominated society except by being like a man. Paradoxically, she can never be accepted as playing a male role, at least not fully. And so the trap is set.

Oh yeah, the title. Hehe, I love Radiohead, too! The connection between the song and the story is very vague, but both are about expectations and self-delusion, so I couldn't resist.

Thank you for the helpful and thorough review!


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Review #10, by adluvshp One of the Boys

3rd June 2013:
Here for review tag.

This was certainly a very interesting one-shot. I love angst-y stuff centred around Slytherin characters, and I think you did Pansy complete justice. Your whole expression of her thoughts, her characterisation, the 'power' concept was all nicely done and I enjoyed it. Your descriptions were strong and captivating, yet not overdone which was good. I liked how you wrote certain scenes without giving too much detail and yet it being just enough. The ending scene caught me off-gaurd but it was well-written. The brief glimpse we got into Draco was believable. All in all, superb job!

10/10
Cheers!
AD
(AditiDraco95)

Author's Response: Hey you! Sorry for taking ages to reply :P

I'm glad you enjoyed the story and that you could tune in to the odd ending. I always felt that Malfoy's selfishness and entitlement needed to be dealt with more in fanfiction. He is an interesting character and enjoys a strong ark in the books, but that doesn't erase his darkest moments.

What I'm trying to say is, I'm so happy you got what I was going for, weren't turned off by the negativity and enjoyed the attempt at characterizing Pansy and Slytherin life!

Cheers and thanks again!


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Review #11, by SweetInferno One of the Boys

27th May 2013:
SweetInferno here with your review!

It honestly made sense to me but it may be a story where few will actually connect. I think you brought out Pansy’s character very nicely, you made me see a new side of her and why see is the way she is. You added a bit of sweetness to Pansy when regarding to how all she wanted was the feeling of confidence that the boys gave her when she was a child… that is something I applaud you for doing in such a angst-y oneshot. I would have liked to see more of a description of her dilemma at the end, because I had to read over it again to really get the meaning and even then it was slightly muddled. You kept the ‘love’ scene with Draco very tasteful and very real. Because in my eyes it wouldn’t be all cozy, especially not for someone like Pansy. The structure was unique and not something I have ever seen before… I loved it. It added a different perspective and gave a completely raw feeling. This may be a weird comparison but it reminded of one of those old movies that all you could do was feel and see… a romantic type of writing without it being at romantic. (I may have just confused you more then I needed too… sorry :D)

So overall I think it is a wonderful little masterpiece that with a few fine twerks could be even better.

Sweetinferno

Author's Response: *.*
Thank you so much! It's really elating for a writer to see their readers take the time to understand the story, and to be able to appreciate it!

The saddest villains are the misunderstood ones, especially the ones whose efforts never do get the credit deserved. For me, Pansy is one of those. I always imagined her as trapped in an endless circle of social pressure that she's less likely to escape the more she tries to. And it's positively depressing how she ends up being something I am sure she never wanted to be, namely just another version of her mother. Pancy's character is doomed from the start. Her redemption in the HP universe, as far as I can see, can lie only in recognition of the fact that she tried to get away, however misguided those attempts may have been.

As to the end scene, I understand why you'd want more description and I really did have to focefully limit myself to the bare minimum when describing it. I felt that in such a jumpy structure as this one, the end much come as a shock just as it would have for Pansy. It is a bit odd because I do more explaining than showing in the rest of the piece...and yet somehow it made sense to end with an awkward break, so as to make sure that the effect doesn't get lost. That said, I am trying to edit the story and I will consider altering the end somehow :P

Thank you for your lovely review and sorry for replying so late!



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Review #12, by DarknessIsMyOnlyFriend One of the Boys

9th May 2013:
The flow in this piece seems rather effortlessly. The imagery just right (and original). The words subtle yet powerful. It reads really easily.
And you described details to the scenes that didn't slow down what was happening, but made the reader more a part of it.

Pansy hasn't been explored very often. Which probably gives you a lot of free reign, yet it also makes it easy to go far away from who her character is in the books.
In my opinion you did not leave the girl from the books behind. You enhanced her.

Young Pansy seems realistic. I can easily believe she would have been kicking against her parents authority at age 9. Her mothers response is wonderful as well. Angry, but calm still. And then finish a lecture off with words such as: do you think it has been easy, raising a girl like you?
Those were some strong words and it suggested a slightly crooked relationship between mother and daughter. This would then account for Pansy's behaviour later on in life.
So I really thought this was a good fit for the characters.

Overall I think you did a good job with Pansy's character! Where power lays according to her...nice touch. She is mean, but she is also incredibly lonely, looking for some assurance that she belongs somewhere. Preferably somewhere with power. I liked that you gave her character this layer. It makes her believable. And very complicated as well. She has such a cockeyed view of the world and her role in it.

And her idea of where power lays is so different from her mothers idea. It shows that she never really stopped kicking against the authority of her parents.

And it makes the ending believable as well. For girl who wants to be powerful, strong, to be overpowered quite easily by one person. The person whose acceptance she seems to seek the most.
Although I must admit it came a as a surprise and I had to take a moment to get it. In a way that makes it a strong ending though. Because you've hammered on her power so much in the rest of the story. And for her to lay still, to not really interact while something was happening, but her wanting him to stay. It screams so much sadness.

I really liked this!

Author's Response: hey!

So sorry for taking ages to answer! I guess I was putting it off because your review is so wonderful, I want to reply to it properly.

This story took me forever to write, I must admit. And I did squeeze in quite a few themes. But I also tried very hard to stick to cannon, and I am very relieved to see that you thought I succeeded in that!

I liked that you said this: "For girl who wants to be powerful, strong, to be overpowered quite easily by one person. The person whose acceptance she seems to seek the most. " This is a good insight and I aggree with you that power can make a person particularly vulnerable, especially since power has to depend on something. In Pansy's case, her perceived power deptended on Draco (as a representation of the typical pure-blood boy), and so he was the one who could easily take it away.

I read somewhere that J.K.Rowling admited that she hated Pansy and created the character as a representation of all the horrible girls she had to deal with at school. That is, supposedly, why Pansy never gets to end up with Malfoy. I found it to be very shocking that even the mind that created Pansy hated her and did not really want to understand her or offer her any redemption. And so, from my point of view, Pansy's story can only be a sad one.

Thank you so much for such a great review!


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Review #13, by Broken Butterfly One of the Boys

7th May 2013:
This is really interesting. I like it. It is structured in away that kept my attention and while differnent it was good. It was refreshing to have a new style of writing. The only thing that I would critique is that in some parts the words were written in a way that it was slightly confusing to comprehend. I had to re-read in several parts to know what was being expressed. This was towards the middle of the chapter. I really like the theme of the story being that Pansy wants to be bad. I think that it fits her personality, and she tries so hard to be bad ass and like her male friends, yet she towards the end of the story is emotional like I girl would be. She lingers in her silent love for Malfoy. Great work. Keep it up.
BB

Author's Response: hey!

So happy you liked it! Yeah, I thought that there must be something human about Pansy's character, even if it's just her desire to be something bigger and stronger than she is :)

Hm, I'll look into my word choice, thank you for mentioning it...I do werid things with words sometimes :P

thanks again, cheers!


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Review #14, by -BookDinosaur- One of the Boys

5th May 2013:
Hi, -BookDinosaur- here with your requested review!

So, I think that this story made perfect sense, or at least it did to me.

I love your characterisation of Pansy-how she didn't want to be like her mother, how she longed to be 'bad'. It's a little sad, really, that she is so desperate for attention that when it's given, she doesn't notice anything else. Nobody else has really explored Pansy's character, and now that you have, it yields very interesting results. ;)

I also enjoyed reading about Pansy and her mother, their interaction was realistic and believable. I liked how you painted them as polar opposites, constantly at loggerheads with each other.

Pansy's theme song is also an interesting idea, a new way of keeping herself in control, I guess.

Your description and imagery was wonderful, I could almost see what was happening right in front of me.

At the end, I'm not certain about what happened, but that is the only CC I could offer you.

All in all, I think that this was a wonderful one-shot. Brilliant job. :D

Author's Response: hey!

I'm glad you found the writing style to work for the story! And you seem to have understood Pansy's character perfectly, so I feel like I must have done something right :D

The end is intended to be a bit confusing. It's reality catching up with Pansy, the male-dominated society putting her back into her place, so to say :P But its also just more of a metaphor for Pansy gorwing up and beginning to lose her illusions.

Thanks for the review, I'm glad you liked it!


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Review #15, by HandofGlory One of the Boys

2nd May 2013:
Hello, filling out your request.

I like minor character stories, but I never really saw a Pansy story anywhere before. I've written her in my stories, but I kept her in character with the evil little girl that JK let us know about.

I think that there is some sad delusion that is in Pansy's mind, that she has to be this bad girl. She couldn't be the well groomed, polite, high society woman that the world, and especially her mother wanted to be. Granted, I'm not saying that she has to be that, but the way she's going could ruin her. To me, that is her war.

It's funny that she has her own little theme music in her head, though.

So, at the end, did Draco rape her? It felt like this wasn't something that, in her right mind, Pansy would allow. I could see why you said that this really wasn't a Pansy/Draco ship.

I do have to say the transitioning between nine-year-old Pansy breaking rules to current Pansy with Draco and Blaise was a bit odd. I didn't realize until near the end of the story where she was. I didn't know if she was in the Slytherin Common room the whole time, having past memories, or if the story started when she was nine.

And the introduction of Blaise seemed random as well. Draco being where he was felt natural, whereas Blaise really had no introduction to the scene, he was just there.

I still enjoyed the story, I hope that my interpretation of the story is what was supposed to happen. And I hope I wasn't confusing with my review.

Author's Response: Hey!

Well, "rape" has quite a spectrum of definitions. I intended that scene to seem morally dubious, certainly. Whether you want to call it date rape or just Pansy being used by Draco, it's not that important to the story. Instead, I was trying to draw a contrast between the way Pansy sees the world and how the world really is. She wants to escape the life of a typical high society pure-blood wife, but she will never be fully accepted in the male-dominated world of power, although she has convinced herself that she is already there. It's also about growing up and shedding the illusions of your youth. I suppose I got a bit carried away with all the themes and parallels, so I see why you'd find it confusing.

As to the time jumping, yeah. The story is not from Pansy's pov, so she isn't really sitting anywhere remembering what is told. Actually, she isn't really aware of most of the comments that the narrator makes about her. That is what I meant when I said the stroy has an odd structure...it's not really a structure at all, haha! I've been thinking of ways to polish it up and make the plot easier to get through.

I introduced Blaise in order to set up something like a sense of foreboding to what happens between Draco and Pansy...but I see now that all the things he says and does are a bit too subtle and probably only make sense to me. Thank you for pointing it out, I'll try to think of ways to make his role more obvious.

thanks for the reivew and sorry for taking so long to answer!



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Review #16, by HeyMrsPotter One of the Boys

29th April 2013:
I really enjoyed this. I was hooked by the end of the first paragraph!
You painted such a great picture of high society wizards and their need for perfection in the way Pansy's mum interacted with her. I also loved the description of her mum from Pansy's point of view.
We read very little about Pansy in the HP series but you have written her character perfectly. I love that she rebels and is 'bad' in different ways as she grows up.
The combination of her own self importance and her vulnerability was excellent, often fanfiction with Pansy as the main character portrays her as very one dimensional but you really gave her a unique personality.
The final paragraph with her and Draco was beautifully written, she almost had a lack of interest in what was happening yet a desperation for it to happen, I almost felt sorry for her!
Overall very well written and a really interesting one-shot, unlike any others I've read. Job well done!

Author's Response: Hey :)

It's wonderful that I could interest you with this story. I had a hard time writing it, actually, since I didn't have any conventional narrative structure in mind, and wasn't sure how to tie all the bits together at all!

Pansy has always made me feel a strange mixtrue of repulsion and pity, and I spent quite some time looking for a fanfic that would confirm my perception of her. Unfortunately, as you said, she is either sort of flat or also often altered beyond recognition into a more dignified and redemption-worthy character.

Thank you for your compliments on the last paragraph! It's a pretty heavy scene and you were inteded to feel sorry for her (I'm cruel to my characters that way, haha). I was hoping to show that although Pansy may have an admirable drive towards power and freedom, she is still weak.

Thank you so much for the swap :)


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Review #17, by Maelody One of the Boys

28th April 2013:
OK, so where to begin? :)

I really liked the fact that this was a Pansy story really. As a fellow Pansy writer, I appreciate that someone can delve into her character and try to show more to her than meets the eye. :)

I like the different varieties of bad here. When she's little, as she grows up, and even in the current stage of her life. It's sort of sad though that in the beginning being bad was something she wanted to do, and in the end it was something more expected out of her. Though, it's a bit awkward that she's considered one of the boys now and Draco can have his way with her ;) lol jk.

Anyway, I thought this story was unique in its own little way. It definitely brought the essence of Pansy, and yet we also never really hear from her as a character. We don't even really get her thoughts, it is all author's interpretation from an outside view, and I really like it. It helps us see what you see, and I really like that. Though, I will admit that it took me a little bit to actually get into the story, though I will also admit that I haven't slept yet (in the next three hours) in 24 hours, so I was just fighting sleep ;). I liked what I saw, and I'll have to come back and read it again (when I'm more awake).

Author's Response: Hey!

Ah, sleep deprivation. Yes, that is familiar. And I must say I admire that you are able to write in full sentences ;) After 24hrs I'm usually talking to shadows and mistaking socks for tea bags :P So, good job for getting through my rather heavy story anyways!

I suppose I need to clear up that the ending with Draco was inteded as a sort of reality-slap. Pansy may be "bad", but in a more innocent, dreamy sort of way. She believes she is one of the boys, and she can't imagine that she could be "reduced" to "just a girl" by someone whom she perceives as her equal. So the story is about how, according to my own observations anyways, there is still a male monopoly on power in the HP universe (especially, not only). I may have overdone it, but every time I think of Pansy I have to imagine how much of a tragic character she is!

Thanks for the review, and for the compliments, glad you liked what you saw!


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Review #18, by Illuminate One of the Boys

25th April 2013:
Hi! Review Tag!

This is a really beautiful oneshot. Pansy is a character not written about much, and few really get into the nitty gritty of her character.

Being part of a pure blood family (probably), it makes sense that instead of being moulded into the 'perfect girl,' she moulds herself into her own personal brand of perfect.

It does seem though, like she's still desperate for approval of some kind, and in that way the story is very sad. She works so hard to craft herself into something she can recognise, but that isn't always possible, especially when it comes to Draco.

Great job! Great prose, wonderful descriptions!

Author's Response: Hey!

Thank you for the positive feedback! I especially like how you described your perception of Pansy: "She works so hard to craft herself into something she can recognise, but that isn't always possible" That is spot on.

I'm happy you liked it, thank you for the review!


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Review #19, by Lululuna One of the Boys

24th April 2013:
Hello, here for review swap!!

So I'm really glad you requested this story as I absolutely loved it. Pansy is such a one-dimensional character in HP, but you expanded on her character and gave her a relatable, vivacious voice while still keeping her in accordance with canon. Viewed through your lens, Pansy's actions and opinions of herself and her place in the world really make sense.

You have some really strong descriptions here as well. For example: "...her eye-brows migrating so far up her forehead that the skin underneath threatened to snap at any moment. But, just like the woman it belonged to, it never did snap. Instead, the two carefully plucked arcs remained perched up there for the rest of the day, stretching and pulling at her face." This is such a unique description: I love how you've forgone conventions and universal images and have instead invented your own, which is very difficult to do and something that most writers don't bother attempting. Through this description I really got the feel of her mother as a pinched, sceptical, dry and uncomfortable type of person. I also loved the use of the words "perched up there," which implies that a child Pansy is looking UP at her mother. These little details really make your writing come to life. :)

Another important aspect of your piece is how Pansy has to compose her identity, putting it on like a mask in the morning and arranging her public face in the correct manner. Pansy's self-image really interests me, how she has a strange, almost theatric image of herself that she tries to project to others.

I liked how you juxtaposed Pansy with the characters of her mother and the boys: Pansy deviates from her mother's femininity and tries to transcend her gender by taking on masculine power roles, yet at the end of the day is used and discarded by Malfoy despite her efforts to match him, so she's stuck somewhere between a traditional female and male. Okay, now it sounds like I'm brainstorming for an essay on your piece, but really I thought it was very thought-provoking!! :P

I think this chapter was the perfect length for your piece: the concepts and ideas were eloquently produced through Pansy's voice. I loved the line about convincing herself that Malfoy touching her is "exceptionally caring": in that simple sentence you say so much about how Pansy constructs the world around her to produce an acceptable reality, and how much a small gesture from Malfoy means to her.

Oh! And one more thing, I loved the image of Pansy holding her slingshot in one hand and her robes in the other. The slingshot is such a boyish, traditionally masculine image, and made me think of the story of David. So, what is Pansy's Goliath? Is it the society her mother belongs to? Or her own deluded sense of self? Hmm...

Anyway, as you can tell I quite liked this and probably this review made little sense. :P Thank you so much for your lovely review on my story, I'll respond to that shortly! :)

Author's Response: Hey!

I know I've taken forever to reply, but it's because I wanted to respond properly to a review that is so thoughtful! :D

I loved how you picked up on the in-between-ness (that's not a word, is it? oh well :P) of Pansy's identity. When I was writing the story, I kept on thinking about women in politics...about how you can go pretty far by doing all the "male" things, but you can never complete the transition and, additionally, you run the risk of losing yourself. But there are no female role models of power, at least non that have a life beyond male fantasies (femme fatale, insane/irrational femininity, etc. are just a few examples). And so, based on this, I saw Pansy as torn between two worlds. She cannot be a typical high society woman, but she can't ever be fully accepted as one of the "leaders" either because she is a girl and will always be seens as such. Her theatrical, fantasized self-perception is a sort of coping mechanism, an attempt at creating a completely new identity for herself since nothing in her environment can offer her one that fits.

I put quite alot of thought into this story, actually... And so I'm happy to see others begin to brainstorm essays on the topic ;)

Thank you so much for a wondeful review!


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Review #20, by CambAngst One of the Boys

23rd April 2013:
Hi, there! Tagging you from Review Tag.

Bad may be a strange word, but its reality is undeniable. It can mean many things and, throughout Pansy’s life, it switched meanings frequently. -- I think you had me with that statement. It's very accurate for the first 18 or so years of a person's life. Everyone has a desire to dance on the edge, one that they manage with varying degrees of success. And that edge moves quite a bit as we grow up.

I loved the contrast between Pansy and her uptight, proper mother. All rebellion requires something to rebel against, and you gave her the perfect foil for her younger years. The idea that Pansy views herself as something almost elemental, above the petty concerns of mortals like her mother, was a brilliant way to set her up for her future badness.

The sneaking off, the pranks, the exhilarating freedom from all civilizational constraints became more difficult to hold on to. But she gave herself to the role completely, making sure to laugh the loudest, punish the hardest and then to hide behind the sweetest, most privileged smile of all. - Sigh. Our little girl is growing up, isn't she? Acting like a pre-teen hooligan isn't enough for her any more. That would make her silly, not bad.

I really liked the idea of Pansy's theme song, and how it seems to adjust itself to help her feel in control of whatever situation she finds herself facing.

The imagery of the mansion that she never wants to be a captive in was a good reinforcement of what you set up from the outset. I really like this version of Pansy, to be honest, in spite of her prejudices and flaws. She can't bear the notion of becoming yet another whinging, fretting pure blood wife, trapped by the social niceties that they're forced to endure. She needs to be bad.

I had a lot of mixed feelings about the ending. And it has nothing to do with the morality of what happened between her and Draco; that just seemed like one of those things that happens all the time between boys and girls of a certain age. The conflict that I felt was more between the image of Pansy as "one of the boys" -- what she wants to be with all her heart -- and the way that the boys look at her. The way that Draco more or less uses her. And it isn't, I don't think, that Pansy isn't a willing participant. After all, she's too bad to allow another person to use her without her consent. The little detail of the spider web on the chandelier brought it all together, oddly enough. The fact that she focused on it tells you a lot about where her mind is at what should have been a very special moment in her life. It's a little hard to explain, but I think this was one of those sad little moments that come with growing up, where the girl who's always "one of the boys" comes to terms with the fact that no matter what, the boys will always have designs on her in a different way. I don't know whether that made much sense, bit that's what I was feeling as I read it.

I thought you did an awesome job of getting me bought into Pansy as a character and really connected to her feelings, even if I couldn't explain them very well at all. She's not an easy character to feel sympathetic toward, but you really accomplished that.

I saw one small typo as I was reading:

Pansy never gave it much thought, but she knew that there was no privilege in upholding rules when it were others that made them. -- I think it should read, "... when it was others that made them."

I really, really liked this. Well done!

Author's Response: hey there!

Thank you so much for such a thoughtful review!

I charged this one-shot with quite a few possibly conflicting themes and emotions. Althought I did feel that, together, they created a picture of the trouble of growing up, I wasn't sure others could tune in...I'm so glad to see that you picked up on what I was trying to say :D

I think my main motivation was to explore what bad really means for a teenager, and it isn't easy to put into words...I don't think i came even close. Bad means to be different and strong, but it also means to be vulnerable, lonely and at times utterly reprehensible and lost. I always felt that Pansy, especially the one in the movies, positively radiated this tragic cocktail of teenage desperation.

The scene with Draco wasn't inteded as a purely negative event, and I am glad you saw it that way too. Scenes like that happen in real life only too often. It's one of those things that either makes or breaks you on your way to becoming an adult. As a teenager you believe you can be whatever you want, the world revolves around you. But, gradually, the illusion has to die somehow...A different character might have emerged in better shape from this than Pansy, but in my interpretation she remains innocent and childish for a bit too long due to the contrast between her inner world and the outside reality. The scene with Draco was intended to be the first step towards her becoming one more of thsoe sad disappointed adults...

XD very sad stuff haha. But, well, Rowling admitted she hated Pansy and so we know the character was never designed to win.

When I was writing the Draco scene especially, I had to think about women in politics. You are completely right to point out that a girl can be "one of the boys" for a while, but ultimately she will be the Other, first a foremost a girl and then a human being. Sadly, that's just how our society is built.

Sorry for the rambing, haha, but your review did get me thinking and I was so happy to see that the one-shot made sense to somebody :P

thanks for the review and see you around on the forums!


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Review #21, by slytherinchica08 One of the Boys

22nd April 2013:
Oh what a very interesting concept! When I first saw the summary i was thinking of the Battle of Hogwarts being what she fought for seven years but this is a great idea. To have the war be with herself and her thoughts of being with Draco and being what she considers "bad". I loved the changing definition of what bad was to her throughout the years. It really added that much more to your story, and made Pansy that much more canon to me as you grounded her into canon events. I thought it was great that she didn't want to be the women in frilly dresses like her mother but instead be outside playing in the mud and getting dirty, ruining her clothes, much to her mothers disapproval. The description was good and the chapter flowed really well! Honestly, I think that Pansy was absolutely perfect in this and that it was all just really well done. I loved the ending with her and Draco. That last sentence was really perfect! It really ties the whole thing together. I loved it! Great Job!

~Slytherinchica08~

Author's Response: Hey!

So sorry for taking absolutely forever to answer! I was very worried about the reception this story might get (still am) and therefore have been putting off answering the reviews :P I'm kind of chicken that way, haha!

Thank you so much for the compliments! I am thrilled that you found the story ties together and fits with cannon. Pansy is not an easy character to understand and I am happy to see that I managed to give her a voice more or less successfully :D


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