Reading Reviews for You. (Me).
38 Reviews Found

Review #1, by Jayna You. (Me).

21st June 2015:
House Cup 2015 - Hufflepuff

This was plain wonderful. Seriously, the style in this was beautiful, the descriptions and imagery were incredibly vivid, and the flow was amazing. Teddy's characterization was great, and this was a different take on Victorie, one that I really liked. It was interesting that she didn't see her own beauty.

At the beginning I was kind of confused, but as the story progressed it fell into place. However, I didn't quite understand why some parts were in italics and some weren't or what the difference was, but that's probably because it really late and my brain's drained. Anyway. Plot wise, even in this relatively short story you managed to establish a clear story ark and climax. I especially loved your last line and felt it wrapped the story up really well.


Author's Response: Hello!

Thank you, that's so sweet! I'm really glad you enjoyed it. I put a lot of effort into the imagery here - I feel like a lot of description can work in a piece this short, you know? It gives you a chance to make the story almost poetic and that's really fun to do with fanfiction!

I'm really glad that the story started making sense and that you enjoyed the characterisations here too. The italics were meant to be Teddy's voice - Echo - watching Victoire watch herself and speaking. I hope that helps things make sense!

Thank you for your lovely review!

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Review #2, by Dojh167 You. (Me).

20th June 2015:
Hufflepuff House Cup 2015 Review

First off, your title is so creative and really draws me in.

It was also a really original idea for a story, and I think that you executed it very well. I thought that this was a very small twist on the Narcissus myth. I saw the twist coming because I saw the word Teddy at the end in the corner of my eye, but that didn't make it any less brilliant.

I really liked the romantic tone you wrote this story in. The sensor details and the eloquence of the angst really contributed to a solid feeling of this being in a mythical genre, to the point that referring to Aphrodite and Adonis seemed natural.

Well done!


Author's Response: Hi Sam! Ah, you've left me so many lovely reviews since this competition started, and I just wanted to say thank you so much! ♥

Haha, I remember spending ages trying to work on the title for this to come up with one that fit, so I'm really pleased you liked it!

This was actually written for a challenge on the forums that was never judged, but I loved writing it - it was so great to use the myth and then twist it a little, and fit it into canon and fill it with all sorts of references and allusions. This was the first piece when I was really heavy on imagery and I really enjoyed writing it!

Thank you so much for this lovely review!

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Review #3, by tangledconstellations You. (Me).

20th June 2015:
Heya! I'm reviewing for Ravenclaw, for the House Cup 2015.

This was so beautiful. It was such a perfect length, and I love the lingering contrasts between how Teddy and Victoire view her beauty. I like the way you alternated between both of their voices - how both of them spoke in their own way. From Teddy I can feel a really wholehearted enthusiasm and passion for Victoire, but I think what is really special is the way Victoire comes across as almost tired of who she is and how she looks. She is doubting herself, who she is behind the 'mask' of her beauty. It's such an interesting stance to take, because it makes me think about who she is as a character - does she hate how she looks? How does that play into the rest of her life? But because this piece is so fleeting and brief, in the most gentle way, those questions hang in the air, unanswered.

The whole tone of this is really cool because your use of colour in the early descriptions paint this bright and vivid portrayal of who Victoire is, but her own tone and her own view on herself almost over saturates it until we are seeing more than how she looks. Yet, to have Teddy clinging on to her sentences once they have been said adds this wistful edge to the piece, that makes me think a lot of love - of loving someone when they don't love themselves and seeing a different kind of beauty within them.

This was really amazing - thank you for sharing ♥

Laura xxx

Author's Response: Hi Laura!

I'm so pleased that you enjoyed this piece! And coming from someone who writes the most beautiful stories and descriptions, that really means a lot to hear! I was trying to do something a bit different with this story - especially since I hadn't been writing fanfiction for long at this point - and I'm so pleased that it worked and that the characterisations of Victoire and Teddy fit too.

I really wanted to explore some different questions and a different side to beauty, and even though I didn't have many words to do that in, it was great to leave those questions hanging for the reader to ask and answer themselves. Thank you so much for this wonderful review! ♥

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Review #4, by DracoFerret11 You. (Me).

20th June 2015:
Hello there! This is DarkRose from the forums, here to review for you for the House Cup 2015! So, let's go over things:

Plot: Oh. This was really interesting. I've never tried to tackle writing just 500 words, but when I find stories where people do it really well, I'm tempted to try. :) This was one of those instances. I liked that Teddy knew Victoire so well and could capture her in such fitting terms. What it must be like to know someone like the back of your hand.

Characterization: I really loved how you portrayed Teddy and Victoire. The only moment I questioned was when Teddy cried. It seemed so sudden. But besides that, I really liked the characters you captured.

Emotions: On that note, I loved the emotions. It was really telling that Victoire feels so alone, despite having so many people's admiration. It's probably not easy to feel loved when just SO many people love you, and for the wrong reasons. Deep.

Overall, I think you did so well with so few words. Your style is really gorgeous here, and I love the way you've written this. Great job.

--Emily (DarkRose)

Ravenclaw, House Cup 2015

Author's Response: Hi again, Emily! Thank you for leaving me so many sweet reviews during the House Cup this year!

Aw, that's really lovely - and you should definitely try writing one of these stories! It's a challenge at first but really rewarding too. I'm glad that you liked the characterisation of Teddy and Victoire and the way that I portrayed the emotions in this too.

Thank you for such a lovely review!

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Review #5, by TreacleTart You. (Me).

19th May 2015:
Hey Sian!

I'm here for the Gryffindor Review Battle! Go Team Red!

The title of this story is what initially drew me into it. I thought it was a very interesting choice and I felt like there had to be a lot of significance to it's selection. Reading the story I sort of imagine Teddy on the outside as You. and Victoire closed off within the brackets as (Me). It sort of mirrors her personality within the story if that makes sense. Maybe I'm reading into this way too much, but that was my initial thought on it.

I love that you've made Victoire somewhat damaged by her beauty. In most stories revolving around Veela or part Veela I see the beauty used as a weapon, but here you use it to give Victoire a real sense of vulnerability. I particularly loved the line "The beauty, Victoire Weasley, detests the gift bestowed on her, which will cause her to be forever alone." It really causes my heart to ache for her because I wonder what has made her so damaged.

Teddy seems pretty in line with his normal characterization. He's pinning after this amazing, beautiful woman and she keeps pushing him away. The way you've illustrated his longing for her is quite lovely.

As always, the language that you use in this is gorgeous. You are such a master smith with your words. They just flow along at such a lovely pace, so poetic in their nature. It really is a beautiful thing, especially when you consider how few words you used to do this. You managed to convey so much with so little.

This was a lovely story and really makes me wonder if they'll ever find their happily ever after. Great work!


Author's Response: Hi Kaitlin!

The title definitely did have some significance to it - it took me SO long to decide on a title for this piece, I remember! I just couldn't find something that really worked for it and sounded right, but I'm glad that I found this and that the title drew you in. I loved your interpretation of it - I'd actually thought of it the other way around but now with your review I see that both work, which is actually really cool!

I really wanted to do something different from the typical idea of beauty being a blessing and the way that so many people use Veela characters in (particularly Next-Gen) stories as this amazing gift that makes life so much easier and men/women just fall at their feet. It frustrates me so much and I really wanted to show the flip side of this - the way that she doesn't feel she can really trust anyone who wants to be with her because she's so used to being wanted just for her looks and not herself. It's really sad but it was a really interesting theme to explore!

I'm so glad you liked the language here, too! I really wanted to go for something poetic and lyrical here - it's such a short piece (shorter than some poems!) and since it was inspired by the poetry challenge I couldn't really go for anything else. I'm so happy it worked!

Thank you for yet another wonderful review!

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Review #6, by AdinaPuff You. (Me).

5th February 2015:

This was beautiful. The summary caught my eye and I had to read it.

The way you described Victoire's beauty was so amazing. You gave me such a vivid picture in my mind of her. You just described her in every way. But I could also sense her pain. How cold and distant she felt. How she felt that nothing was true and pure, and everyone only wanted her because of her beauty. I can't imagine the pain. The lonliness.

And teddy's thoughts were just as beautiful as Victoire herself. It was wonderful to see someone look at her and see past the pretty face. He could tell who she was. That was beautiful. You showed his love for her perfectly.

I loved this one shot! It was perfect, truly :)


Author's Response: Hi Leigh! Thank you for being so sweet as to offer to leave a review!

I'm really pleased you liked the descriptions here! With it being such a short one-shot, it was something that I really wanted to focus on, particularly since the theme was beauty. Victoire is certainly beautiful, but she also suffers because of it; she can't really form attachments or close relationships with people because she thinks that people only want her for how she looks.

Teddy, poor Teddy ♥ He both sees the beauty that everyone else sees, and is captivated by it, but he's known her for so long that he knows what she's really like and that's the person that he loves, rather than the beautiful woman (simply in appearance) everyone else sees.

Thank you so much for this lovely review!

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Review #7, by Gladis Gudgeon You. (Me).

25th August 2014:
Review Tag
This story wasn't perfect, but I'm having a hard time finding anything wrong with it because it is so different than what I usually read. Sorry if my comments suck. You pulled off the whole poetic vibe, which is hard. It can go bad very quickly. But I think you need a few more details in there to grownd it. Things like references to the character 's experiences even as she has emotions. Like when people think they usually tie their emotions to memories of experiences and you didn't really have that. She didn't seem as real as she could have. Other than that it was very good. I liked Teddy's thought at the end. Not the most original, but it was well done. 8/10
Gladis Gudgeon
PS I'm sorry if that didn't make much sense.

Author's Response: Hi there!

I'm pleased that you enjoyed this story! I tried to make it seem more poetic and lyrical, particularly with the descriptions, because it was actually inspired by a poem. I can see what you mean about including more details to round out the characters, but it's more of a snapshot; this story's for the Every Word Counts Challenge, so I was limited to 500 words, and it's hard to expand more on that. I'm glad you liked the rest of it, though, and thanks for your review!

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Review #8, by The_Crookshanks_Saga You. (Me).

11th August 2014:
I dun get it.

KIDDING! OMG, Nott, how is it possible for writing to be this purty? You have just inspired me... to write something this amazing... yeah, can't do it.

I love how you describe her in the terms of a mirror. A mirror has so many metaphorical meanings, that the granite heart slides in perfectly, dare I say seamlessly.

Can't wait to stalk your Author's Page!


Author's Response: Hi Meena!

*blushes* Aw, I'm glad that you enjoyed this piece! I focused a lot on my descriptions when I was writing this one-shot, because it was great to explore that imagery in a piece this length. I really enjoyed exploring beauty in a different way.

The mirror was inspired by the poem Narcissus and Echo and the myth, so it seemed to fit in perfectly. Thank you for this amazing review, and don't put yourself down - I'm sure your stories are brilliant!

Sian :)

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Review #9, by UnluckyStar57 You. (Me).

12th July 2014:
Oooh, this is so fantastic!

I love how you wove the myth of Narcissus and Echo in to the story, even going so far as to italicize your version of Echo: Teddy Lupin. Poor guy. He's so lovelorn and so torn up by Victoire's rejection of him that he can only sigh after her and think about how she doesn't know she's beautiful. (He may or may not have inspired the song by everyone's favorite British boy band... And no, I don't mean the Beatles.) :P

But as with Narcissus, Victoire seems to be cognizant of her beauty, and she stares at her reflection--but unlike Narcissus, she doesn't love it. But why should it keep her from being happy with someone? I'm not sure. It is a bit narcissistic of her to think that she's too beautiful for Teddy, but maybe that's the reason?

Great one-shot. I love how you picked and chose the elements of the myth to weave into the story. :)

House Cup 2014 Review


Author's Response: Hi!

I'm really pleased that you liked the way I incorporated the myth into this piece, as it's one of my favourites! The italics idea came from the poem this was inspired by, but I thought it worked well for the 'echo' part. I was so mean to poor Teddy here, because he's been rejected by the girl he loves and he's so sad that she can't see who she is clearly.

Victoire definitely recognises her own beauty, but I wanted to give the myth a bit of a twist and show that it's something she turns away from. Unfortunately for her, she sees her beauty as a bit of a curse - she doesn't think that people like her for who she really is, rather than her appearance. So she turns away from people and retreats into herself because she doesn't trust them to like her on something other than her appearance, if that makes sense...

Thank you so much for the lovely review!

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Review #10, by Karou_Marauder You. (Me).

10th July 2014:

This is a really different take on Victoire (and Teddy). I suppose, in some ways, her Veela blood will make her prettier than other girls, and that could be a burden. I suppose that, just because Fleur was confident with it, doesn't mean Victoire will be.

I like the way you've put Teddy second, in italics as though he's an afterthought to her, one of the many that call for her and can't see past her face. It's nice that you don't tell us why her heart is so battered and bruised, why she turns everyone away, because it gives us a feeling of mystery and in-completeness, which is what Teddy must be feeling.

"a single tear rolls down my imperfect cheek" This is really nice, casually telling us that Teddy cells unworthy beside Victoire's beauty and perfection. And the earlier quote "My unworthy eyes" does the same.

Poor Teddy. ;)

-Karou, 2014 House Cup Review

Author's Response: Hi Karou!

When I started writing this I was going to use different characters, but Victoire and Teddy seemed to want to be written and the different take on them worked well in my mind. Victoire here sees her beauty as a curse because she's never sure if people really like her for her, and that causes a lot of problems for them.

Poor Teddy! I feel kind of mean for what I've put him through here and in a way he is an afterthought, because she's dismissed him as an option. But it's also inspired by the Narcissus and Echo poem and myth, with Teddy as the nymph who suffers from unrequited love. He definitely feels like he isn't worthy of Victoire!

Thanks so much for the lovely review!

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Review #11, by Lady Asphodel You. (Me).

9th July 2014:
Hey Sian! It's me Alishya! Reviewing for the HC!

This was absolutely stunning! Inspiring! The meaning was of beauty that you showed through Victoire was deep too!

You really captured me with your words! I love these two line, The person beneath the exquisite exterior is unknown to those around it, because the skin remains unblemished, and nobody could believe that such loveliness can belie a damaged core. People wish only to know the magnificent mask, to bask in the light which such a form emits.

Even despite her beauty - it is a curse for her! No one can really see for who she is... (I think except for Teddy - if I assumed correctly). She's longing to be normal and accepted for her of herself!

Stories or... Excerpts about masks always intrigues me, and you really touched something within me and I believe for other readers who feel that they cannot be or feel accepting of them selves.

Amazing job in writing this! Keep it up dear!

~ House Cup Review 2014

- Asphodel

Author's Response: Hey Alishya! It's great to see you here! :D

Oh wow, thank you so much! I put a lot of effort into the description and imagery in this piece because of the theme of beauty in it. But yes, I wanted to put a different twist on the idea of beauty, because for Victoire she feels like it's a curse and nobody will be able to see her for the person she truly is. Thank you so much for all your lovely comments, and hearing that it's touched you makes this even better! ♥

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Review #12, by FredWeasleyIsMyKing You. (Me).

9th July 2014:
Hey Sian my love! How have I not reviewed this yet?

Wow. I'm just in awe right now. Every part of this was just perfection. I love the word choices you used, it's so beautiful and haunting. The emotion you packed into this just blew me away. I think it was a good choice to not tell us who you were writing about until the end... Although I must admit Victoire crossed my mind with a few others. All the description though, especially of her face are just so vivid. I pictured it all Sian. I feel really sorry for poor teddy. Loving her as much as he does but her unable to see it or accept it. I love how you made her beauty a curse, something I'm sure is true for people. It really enforces that people really are never happy with themselves!

Anyway, great job huni as always. Your writing is incredible Sian!!

Lauren :)
House cup review 2014

Author's Response: Hey Lauren!

Ah, I'm so excited to see you here! It was so difficult to be able to cut down all of the words in this piece so that it was exactly 500, but I'm really pleased that you think the word choice worked! In something this short it's not really necessary to say the name of the characters but I liked including a hint of mystery! I'm so happy you liked all of the description and the different spin on beauty that I took here.

Thank you so much for this fantastic review, dear! ♥

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Review #13, by TidalDragon You. (Me).

9th July 2014:
Howdy Sian! Hopefully I won't be egregiously long-winded this time. That's really been slowing me down.

Anyway, the thing I liked most about this story was how the parties remained unnamed until the very end. I thought that was really powerful because it made me reflect on more high-minded, generalized concepts like what we value and how appearances can be deceiving.

I also thought you did an impeccable job with word choice. Sometimes when people address concepts like you did more generally (at first), rather than purely in the context of a specific character or relationship, it all gets too repetitive, even when there's soaring vocabulary. You went beyond and blended strong individual words with emotion and imagery that made the text more than the words that composed it. Bravo for that!

I really enjoyed this story! (And trying to practice leaving shorter reviews so I can have more of an impact in this thing).

House Cup 2014 Review

Author's Response: Hi Kevin!

I'm really glad that you liked my choice not to name the characters until the end of the story. I wanted people to guess at the people involved but also explore the concept of beauty in a more objective way.

Word choice was so difficult here, since it's only 500 words, but it was a really good challenge and I enjoyed writing it. The imagery was another aspect I really enjoyed because you can do a lot more in a shorter piece without it feeling too overwhelming, I think.

Thanks so much for this review, Kevin!

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Review #14, by LadyL8 You. (Me).

7th July 2014:
Hi There.

Wow. This was really good, really really good. I'm actually speechless for the third time today. This was just breathtaking and I don't have words to express just how much I loved it.

You are way too good at description. It's almost unfair to be that good, I'll tell you. I could see the whole thing in my head, hear their voices saying what was going on in their minds, see this beautiful girl. And I just loved it.

I loved how you got an insight in two different minds. Victoire who dislikes her beauty, who thinks of it as a curse, and then Teddy who is completely captivated by her and wishes she could see just how brilliant she is. It was so different from anything I've seen or read, but definitely in a good way.

Oh, and I also loved that you didn't reveal who they were until the end. Because it left me wondering who they were. I thought for a second it was James/Lily, but I also thought about Victoire/Teddy. But I think it could've fit with either.

And as I'm sure you've probably gathered by now, I loved it. 10/10!

- Lotte

House Cup 2014 Review

Author's Response: Hi Lotte!

Wow, thank you so much for your compliments on my writing - I'm so happy I wrote something that you loved!

I really concentrated on my descriptions in this piece as I felt that something so short could focus more on the physical aspects - plus it worked really well with the theme of beauty. I'm so pleased that you liked them!

It was really interesting to take a different stance on beauty when it came to Victoire and write someone who saw it as a curse. I'm glad you liked the different narratives combining together for the story! You're the first person who's mentioned that James/Lily could have been the pairing here and I hadn't thought about them, but it's really great that not naming them till the end let you guess!

Thank you so much for this fantastic review!

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Review #15, by adluvshp You. (Me).

14th March 2014:
Blackout Battle 12/20

Wow Sian, as always, your writing is perfection. I really loved this insight into Teddy and Victoire's minds. The way it was written was so unique and creative. It was also sad to see how their thoughts differed from each other. I also liked how you concealed the character names until the end, keeping us in suspense.

The descriptions were very well-written and flowed beautifully. There was so much emotion and feeling in just these 500 words, it astounded me. I really felt for both Teddy and Victoire - Teddy who'd never get his love and Victoire who'd never realise her own worth thinking that the beauty she has will stop her from getting any real love. I also enjoyed your word-choice very much as this made use of some amazing vocabulary. Great job on the story and the challenge.


Author's Response: Hi Aditi!

It means a lot to me that you came to review this, especially since I know that you prefer Dom and Teddy together! Your compliments on my writing are so sweet and kind, thank you so much!

The word choice was a lot harder than I thought, because it's the 500 word story, and I'm really happy that you liked the way I wrote this. The imagery felt like an important part in a piece about beauty, and I'm glad you liked it. It was fun to write a slightly different relationship between Teddy and Victoire than the one that we normally get to see!

Thank you so much for the review!

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Review #16, by MyMyMiss You. (Me).

14th March 2014:
Omg the suspense! and in such a short story, you had me on the edge of my seat and then you were like Victoire and Teddy I was like OMG no way?really. I thought lily and James, not two next gen characters!

Wow, beautifully written story hun, and the suspense! omg, your descriptions were amazing, I could vision this goddess - to put it in words, and she was gorgeous, all I could see were beautiful hair, perfect face, slim figure, you name it this girl had it, and then it was teddy and poor teddy was in love with her, not that he doesn't get her but you know lol.

I really liked that we also got to see some of Teddy's emotions, he'd been threw so much as a child, I think even though you were conveying happiness you also got through a little of his sadness, becuase we all knew he grew up without his real parents, and I always think of that as I read a teddy story, and now that I can read back over it and add that on it - seeing I now know who it is, I can see a little sadness sin there with his happiness, and his vision that he's giving the reader.

Great job!


-blackout review 5/20

Author's Response: Ah, that's exactly the reaction I was hoping for with this story! I deliberately didn't mention any names because I wanted the reader to guess who it was, and it was really interesting - you're the first person to say that you thought it was Lily and James, which is great!

I'm so happy you liked the descriptions! I really wanted to use a lot of imagery since this was such a short piece, and I'm pleased you could imagine what she looked like too!

Yes, I always think that some part of Teddy would have retained that sadness, no matter how much love he had from family and friends who were left to care for him. So I wanted to portray a hint of that in this story and it's really great you could find that here. I'm glad you enjoyed seeing Teddy's perspective too!

Thanks for the wonderful review!

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Review #17, by PolyJuice_ You. (Me).

13th March 2014:

This is the second Every Word Counts story I've run across during this battle! You guys are amazing, I could never put this much emotion and plot into 500 words. *bows down*

Sheesh, this was totally powerful. It left me wondering who it was about right up until the end. Your word choice was phenomenal and I could see every line of her face that you described, every thing he saw, i saw too. Great work!

But not only the physical side, I loved the way you talked about her emotionally, too. It makes me wonder about their backstories, and I for one, would love a prequel. Winkwink!

Anyway, I loved this so much! Great job!


Author's Response: Ah, thank you so much! Trying to put all of the emotion into such a short story was one of the big challenges I faced when I decided to do it, so I'm glad that you think it worked.

I really wanted to leave the reader guessing about who the protagonist of the story was, even though it was only short. I'm pleased you liked the description in this and that it allowed you to picture her in your mind! And it's brilliant that you loved the emotional side of this too - I definitely wouldn't rule out a prequel!

Thank you for the lovely review!

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Review #18, by Maelody You. (Me).

2nd March 2014:
Wow. 500 words exactly and you caught just about every emotion I have left in me! What a wonderful job!


I was a little confused at first, thinking that Victoire (I figured it was one of our leading Veela women)had two sides of every thought to her. And then the end just summed it all up for me! How adorable Teddy is! Honestly, though, with him being the lovey side, I think my favorite lines came from him ;).

Poor Victoire though! I hope there is a way for her to console in herself that it's all in her head! Teddy loves her! The whole world knows so! Literally! xD

Wonderful job! And congratulations on keeping it at exactly 500 words! You're amazing!


6/10 review a Gryffindor story for Slytherin vs. Gryffindor bingo blackout

Author's Response: Hey Mae!

I was so excited when I wrote a story that was exactly 500 words - when I decided I was going to do it, I didn't know how hard it would be!

It was meant to be ambiguous at the beginning so that people would guess the characters (since it's so short, I didn't think it mattered too much) but I'm sorry if it confused you! I'm glad you liked seeing Victoire and Teddy though, and feel sorry for Victoire. She's definitely not in a great place but hopefully things will improve for her in the future!

Thank you for reviewing and good luck in the Bingo!

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Review #19, by patronus_charm You. (Me).

22nd December 2013:
Hey Sian! Happy birthday! I'm stealing the free wifi at the train station so this will be a speedy review!

I really loved all of the description that you used. It was really vivid and had great imagery. This will sound strange but it also really fitted in with the banner which is something not seen very often but acted as a great synopsis to the story.

The style used in this was really great and it really felt as if a lot more had been said than there had been in five hundred words because of that. I think my favourite sections were the Teddy ones because he seemed so hopeless and forlorn that Victoire couldn't realise that she had this beauty and that he loved her. Then the closing line was really great, and left a lastin image in my head.

I really liked the twisted image of Victoire because in my head canon she is like that given all the pressure she must have had on her with her being a symbol of hope after the war.

A wonderful one shot Sian!


Author's Response: Kiana! ♥ You're the cutest, thank you so much!

Writing a piece that's only 500 words is so hard, and I was worried the style wouldn't work properly because I had to be so picky with word choices. But at the same time I wanted to really load this piece with description, since the theme is beauty. I'm really pleased that it worked!

After writing Victoire I can definitely see her being twisted and having serious issues with the expectations put on her. I wasn't sure how people would take this interpretation of her but I'm really happy you liked it, because this is one of my favourite stories that I've written.

Thank you! ♥

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Review #20, by Lululuna You. (Me).

16th December 2013:
Hello darling! I'm here for your third prize review, and am really glad I got the chance to leave some love on this story as I really love how brilliant and lovely it is!!

First of all congratulations on winning the 500 word challenge! I'm very impressed with people who can as I think cutting down words is the most difficult thing about writing. :P I think with this story the quality of the words really added to its impact, and the way it sort of read like a poem itself was really powerful, and even more so because of the shortness of it. Very skillfully done, and I can tell how much work you put into crafting it.

I really liked the way it wasn't exactly clear who was the person feasting on the beauty. Because the poem is based on Narcissus I first assumed that it was Victoire talking about herself and her own beauty, and how she longed for it the way Narcissus longed for his own reflection. But then it's revealed that Teddy is looking upon Victoire, and the confusion there sort of gives the poem a double-layered meaning that could go either way. It's confusing whether Victoire hates or loves her beauty - or is irrevocably drawn to her own beauty the way that others are while still recognizing the flawed logic in this love and the flaws in her own character - or if Teddy loves her for her beauty or in spite of it. That probably made no sense but what I mean to say is that the layering and ambiguity of the story is really clever. :)

I thought another very interesting device was the very cold and almost mechanical and fragmented descriptions of Victoire's beauty. In Petrarchan sonnet forms I know that one method of writing a poem praising a lover's beauty was to dissect their body and label each body part through symbolism and simile, and poets like Shakespeare mock this ("my mistress' eyes are nothing like the sun..."). I've read some feminist poems which dissect this literary tradition and show how it demeans the woman's body and turns it into an object, and with the opening lines I really felt like this was what was going on, to turn Vic from being a living, rational being into an object broken down into separate components, and could have been referenced again in the line closer to the end about the poems about unrequited love. I'm not sure if I read that right, but if so I thought that was a great detail in de-humanizing her as well.

It's such a tragic story, how Victoire thinks she has to be alone forever because of her beauty, and sees it as a curse whereas beauty is traditionally seen as a blessing. Teddy's recognition of his own imperfection and his longing to save Victoire was really hopeless but also lovely as well. I quite liked the use of the word "brilliant" as it broke the spell of the haunting poetic words of the poem and brought the story back into real life terms: brilliant is the sort of word a young man might use to describe someone he really likes - not only for her beauty - and the word really brought Victoire away from this position of a god-favoured beauty and into an identity as a real person. :)

Another aspect I really enjoyed was the mention of Vic's beauty being a blessing of the gods and Aphrodite smiling down. It played with the irony of beauty supposed to be a blessing but really being a curse for the person who is gifted. It made me think of Greek figures like Helen of Troy and Paris, whose beauty really just caused a whole lot of bloodshed and trouble. The beautiful princesses and maidens from Greek myths never seem to have particularly happy fates- in fact, they more often than not get pursued by the gods and subject to violence and heartbreak. So I think that playing with the traditional portrayal of beauty and bringing in the classical references (also a good nod to the inspiration from the Narcissus and Echo poem) was a really amazing touch which added a new layer of allegory and depth to the story.

Wonderful job with this Sian! I loved reading it and leaving these rather rambly English-nerd thoughts. :)

Author's Response: Oh wow. This review... trying to formulate a coherent response is extremely difficult, but I'm going to try.

It was a bit of a struggle to write something that's only 500 words - I hadn't realised how much you have to think about every single word - but I was pleased with the result, so I'm glad you liked it too!

Eep, I love your English-nerd thoughts on this story! You've analysed it in the same way my thought process was doing as I wrote it, and it's great to see that it's not just me who can interpret something like that, if it makes sense! The ambiguity was completely deliberate, because I wanted people to be guessing who was speaking and what was going on as they were reading, even though it's just short. That ambiguity, especially about Teddy's and Victoire's feelings, was left open for the reader to decide what they think might happen at the end of it, or might have happened - it's been really interesting to read all the different reactions to that!

Yes, the dehumanisation was an element I was trying to convey, and I'm so excited that you thought of the Petrarchan sonnets! It's objectification here not only of women by men, but also of women by women - of Victoire by herself. She's dissecting her own beauty and struggling with what it might mean and how it affects her life. I'm seriously doing a bit of a happy dance here at all the things you've picked up on!

I intended this to be quite haunting and hopeless, so I'm pleased I managed to do that. Victoire struggles with the fact that she can never know if someone truly likes her for her, or just for her beauty - and that's become such a problem that even with Teddy, she can't consider it as anything other than a curse. It was really interesting to subverse the traditional ideas of beauty and portray it as a negative. I loved your reading of Teddy as well!

You're exactly right about the mythical characters never seeming to have happy fates! I really wanted to play around with that Classical reference because it just felt like it fit in well here - not only with the concept of beauty, but also the fact that the story was inspired by a poem which was in turn inspired by mythology (I confused myself with that sentence :P). I'm so happy you liked it!

Seriously, this review is AMAZING! I can't tell you how excited I was to read all these thoughts on this story, and it's not rambly at all - it's perfect! ♥

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Review #21, by purplepotter77 You. (Me).

10th October 2013:
Finally here to review the entries for my Poetry Challenge, sorry this is so late!

Wow, I really love all the imagery you have here and how you managed to contain it all within 500 words! You managed to convey so many emotions, the characterizations of Teddy and Victoire, and incorporate the poem really well! I loved how you used the echo thing that was in the poem, with the italicized voice of Teddy after a section of Victoire's perspective. There's a really lovely contrast between both of their voices, and the switching perspective wasn't at all confusing, as one might expect it to be.

Your characterizations of Victoire and Teddy were really great and so creative, too! It's really interesting to see how even though Victoire is so beautiful and supposed to be really vain, she hates her gift of beauty and recognizes all the negative things that come with it. On the other hand, there's Teddy, who watches Victoire from afar and loves her, despite the fact that she doesn't love herself. The last line was just the perfect way to end this, and it really summed up the relationship between Teddy and Victoire so well!

Another thing I loved here was the reference not just to Narcissus and Echo, but to Adonis and Aphrodite. The inclusion of Greek mythology in fanfiction (or literature in general) is one of my favorite things, especially when it's done well, like you managed to do in this piece. "They swarm to the beauty, drawn as bees to a dazzling flower, as magpies to a sparkling gem." this line especially was one that I loved, because the similes were really vivid and fit so well with the one-shot.

Overall, this was so beautifully written; thank you so much for entering my challenge! :D

Author's Response: Hello! I'm sorry my reply is so late!

I was so pleased when your challenge came up and I got that poem, because it didn't take long for inspiration to strike after that! I really wanted to try this for the Every Word Counts challenge as well, and I'm glad you think it worked well and didn't seem too short! It took me a little while to decide how to convey the idea of the echo in the poem, but I'm really pleased that you liked it and that it didn't confuse you!

With this one-shot I wanted to do something different and a little unconventional, and I think that in fanfiction beauty is almost always seen as a positive (I'm not going to go into the extent of my views on it), and I wanted to show that it could be a negative too, and that beauty isn't always something to be celebrated. You managed to understand the relationship between Teddy and Victoire perfectly, and that makes me really happy!

Eep, you like the imagery and allusions! That was probably my favourite part of this piece, as I wanted to load it with lots of description and that wasn't easy to do in 500 words, but I'm so pleased you liked it!

Thank you so much for this incredible review, it really put a massive smile on my face!

Sian :)

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Review #22, by missclaire17 You. (Me).

19th September 2013:
Hello! I'm here with another review for you!

What I loved about this piece is how you managed to portray so much about beauty in so little words. I like the contrast between how Victoire sees herself and how Teddy sees her. It's a stark contrast, yet one that made the story even more powerful. It wasn't simply Teddy saying how Victoire can't see how beautiful she is and it isn't simply about Victoire lamenting the beauty that she has. It's a lot deeper because we see Victoire's insecurities and how this gift that she is given is actually terrible in her opinion, yet, Teddy, doesn't look at her that way. He loves her, sees her beauty, and knows that Victoire will never see herself that way.

Something I thought was interesting is how Victoire says that her beauty invites falsities, yet Teddy's thoughts are full of how perfect she looks. It's almost as if he is reaffirming what she is saying. Then, it says how hurt he is that she is 'rejecting him' and in the end, Teddy says that he loves her and that she's brilliant. Then, there is that doubt in your mind that he isn't just in love with her beauty, but potentially much more than that. That doubt allows room for the thought to grow to wishing Victoire would see herself the way that Teddy sees her.

Absolutely amazing! (:
xoxo, Claire

Author's Response: Hey Claire!

I'm really happy you picked this story for the last review because it's one of my favourites :) It was great to explore the theme of beauty in this, because although I'm sure other people have shown the negatives of it, I haven't read any stories that do.

It's brilliant that you could see what I was trying to communicate with the contrasts between Victoire and Teddy. In a way Teddy reaffirms the fact that Victoire is only loved because of her beauty, but at the same time I think that someone like Teddy would be able to beneath all of that and love her for who she is rather than how she looks. I'm really happy you could see that in this story!

Thank you so much for all these lovely reviews - they really made my day!

Sian :)

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Review #23, by valerian7 You. (Me).

6th September 2013:
Hello :)

In a single word, this one shot is beautiful. Really, and truly, beautiful. I thought it was interesting how beauty was a prominent theme in your piece and also my first impression of your writing. While Victoire's beauty is empty and haunting, your one-shot is rich in detail and overflowing with substance.

The way you structured it was so creative and effective! I got the chills when you were describing Victoire's reflection. And then I got them again when you described the drawbacks of being beautiful. And then AGAIN when I read Teddy's last line. Obviously, I thought it was really chilling.

I can't believe you made me this emotional in only 500 words. That is really something to be proud of. Speaking of word count, was it really hard to get it to exactly 500 words?? I feel like it must have been frustrating to get it so exact.

Brilliant one shot. I loved it.


Author's Response: Hi Sammy!

Wow, this review... I don't even know what to say. You've made me blush with all your compliments and this review has definitely made my day!

I'm really happy you liked the way that I structured the story to contrast Victoire and Teddy! The best I can hope for with my writing is to affect the reader, and I'm so happy I was able to do that!

Yes, it was quite difficult - it makes you think about every single word you choose and wonder if it's really necessary. I'm glad I challenged myself to do it though, and it's a great way to try a new style of writing!

Thank you so, so much for this amazing review!

Sian :)

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Review #24, by ShadowRose You. (Me).

30th August 2013:
Hi Sian, I'm here for the Gryffie review swap! Looks like procrastination is seeping from schoolwork to HPFF as well. :P

Holy cow, I don't know what I was expecting when I opened this story, but I was completely blown away by this piece. It really does make the most of every word, and you manage to fit description, emotion, and vivid imagery into 500 words so well that it feels like the piece was 5,000 words, not 500.

Your wording here is striking - each sentence is so loaded with description, metaphor, simile, and more. Some of my favourite sentences were (I'd choose the whole story if I could, but I tried to find a few specific ones): "They swarm to the beauty, drawn as bees to a dazzling flower, as magpies to a sparkling gem." and "I am cast away, in a boat without a sail, left to drift forever in the sea that is those eyes." Just... wow. I love the Grecian god references as well, which is in part because mythology makes me happy, and also because it adds in the idea that Victoire has no control over her appearance, and that she's stuck with this "gift."

I also love the approach you took in the entire premise of the story - having Victoire hate her beauty, and Teddy love her despite it. It's different than the traditional take on beauty, and it really has a poignant effect here.

I like the alternation between both Teddy and Victoire, because we see Victoire from both inside of her, and how she's perceived, and it really creates this lovely little contrast but makes her story all that much sadder. I just want to hug them both, and then maybe lock them in a room together, haha. :P

Overall, this piece was absolutely beautiful, and I had to control myself so that I didn't just gush about how much I loved it throughout the entire review, and actually formed coherent sentences instead of "ohmygoshthisissobeautifulandamazingicanthandleitwritemorepleasepleaseplease"... which is accurate, but also hard to read for an entire review, especially when there aren't any actual spaces. :P

So yeah, awesome job, and write lots more please. :)

-ShadowRose (Taylor)

Author's Response: Hi Taylor!

I don't even know how to respond to this review coherently, but I'll try my best! You should just know that this has completely made my day!

Until I decided to make this 500 words, I had no idea how much every word really does count, but it felt right to try and load a piece this short with lots of imagery and description. Those lines are some of my favourites as well, and I'm really happy that you liked the description in this! With the inspiration for this being a poem based on the myth of Narcissus and Echo, I couldn't resist adding in some references to the Greek gods.

Yes! I really wanted to turn the usual portrayal of beauty on its head here, and it was fun to explore in this one-shot. The contrast between them was one of the things I really wanted to get across here, and I'm pleased you could see it. Haha yes, we should lock them in a room together so they can sort themselves out!

Thank you so, so much for this fantastic review! It really has made my day and I just want to gush back in response!

Sian :)

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Review #25, by LilyLunaPotter17 You. (Me).

23rd August 2013:
Hello :)

Can I just say that your description is just ... wow. I don't think there's even a word that describes how beautiful it is.

The way you describe Victoire to detest her beauty, her "gods' blessing" is really brilliant, and how people like her because she's beautiful and the idea that she's hiding pain makes me feel really sorry for her - who would want people to pretend they're your friends just because you have a pretty face?

"I am cast away, in a boat without a sail, left to drift forever in the sea that is those eyes." This sentence is just beautiful. I think it really describes how withdrawn Victoire is and how Teddy feels kind of alone.

"A single tear rolls down my imperfect cheek." I'm guessing this is Teddy talking? For me, it feels like he thinks Victoire is so beautiful that he has all these imperfections and he's positively ugly in comparison.

There isn't much else I can say about this, except that it's a really, really beautiful piece of writing and that your description skills are absolutely breathtaking. I'm definitely going to add this one to my favourites!

Summer x

Author's Response: Hello again! And I'm sorry it's taken me so long to respond to all these reviews!

*blushes* Thank you so much! Because this was such a short piece I really wanted to make every word count and load it with description and imagery. I'm pleased that you could understand why she hates her beauty and that the reasons behind it made sense.

Yes, that is Teddy talking! I'm glad you were able to pick up on the contrasts between the two characters because that's one of the main things I was trying to achieve here!

Thank you so much, you've just blown me away with this review!

Sian :)

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