Reading Reviews for Playing for Keeps
143 Reviews Found

Review #1, by Veritaserum27 Proposal Anxiety (Is Amusing)

3rd May 2017:
Hi there Mallory!

I'm here for BvB and I was so excited to see you'd posted last and I could get back to this story. Then I started reading it and REALIZING HOW MUCH I MISS IT. Zomg. I love these characters you've created. Annie is so real and I can relate to her so much. I'm also an introvert and I just. You really did an amazing job with this. I saw in you author's note that you think this is a fluffy chapter, but it's really so much more than that. You have so much inclusivity woven seamlessly throughout this that it's exactly the sort of story that people need to read.

How could one passing comment still stick so fast in my mind?

Ugh. I feel this so much. I always let the past creep back in with an offhand remark. And then I beat myself up over it. You really nailed it with Annie's emotions, here.

And Ethan is absolutely adorable. I love how you've got a little bit of everything with this story. And each character is truly unique. Haha - I laughed out loud at Annie's 'rephrasing' of Ethan's last name. I don't think I've ever heard that one before. Very clever.

The flashback scene was also well done to give us a basis for not only the Ethan/Hattie relationship, but how they are together as a trio. It's very refreshing to see such a healthy relationship in a story like this!

Sorry for skipping around in the review, but I've got to get back to this GIANT hole Annie has dug for herself. Eeep! How's she going to find a way out? Seriously, you've spun us one deep plot here. I can't wait to find out what happens next! Thanks again for the fabulous story!

♥ Beth

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Review #2, by Ray Which Team Do You Play For?

27th April 2017:
Awesome chapter! I love how she spent the whole time talking to James's friend. Yeah, there are so many plots and mysteries. I'm very interested to see how they all work together. So glad the past two chapters have a lot of James. I like dumb, but lovable chapters.

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Review #3, by blackzero Forgiveness (Can You Imagine?)

31st March 2017:
Oh they have finally confronted each other.Now they can go on track to be a lovely couple.Thanks for.coming back.

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Review #4, by Cie Forgiveness (Can You Imagine?)

30th March 2017:
Even though I barely remember what else happens, I really easily got into this chapter as I read it. I like the way James twisted Annie's story around with his point of view and how he couldn't really give a reason for his actions. Nice chapter!

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Review #5, by Harry Potter rules The Queen in Her Lair

4th September 2016:
Good chapter. next update soon plz!

Author's Response: Thanks! Unfortunately, it's been ages. :/ I need to return to fic!


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Review #6, by ImaRavenclaw Shooting Star, After Midnight

28th July 2016:
Hi Mallory, Lily here with review tag!

Oh my Merlin I love your story so so so much so far. The descriptions are vivid and poignant, and your main character seems extremely mysterious and alluring, I'm interested.

Now I myself don't know much (or anything) about pool, but I sort of understood the basics of this. Thankfully you explained a few things, because those things can leave readers lost. You did an amazing job with the pool aspect, of not explain too much, but not explaining too little either.

I really do love your main character, but my only correction is (you can choose what you want to do with it) I'd really love to know her name. Is she a canon character or is she an OC? If you just wanted a mysterious effect and you introduce her in the next chapter, then just ignore me!

I loved your descriptions of everything, it was so interesting. Like seeing inside your head, or actually being there.

Overall this is a great beginning and this story is off to an awesome start. I think I'll go read the next chapter now. I hope you have an awesome day and I'm so excited to read more of this.

Yours sincerely,


Author's Response: Hi there, and thank you for your review, which you wrote so long ago!

I'm so glad you love it! Haha, I know very little about pool, but it's just enough to write about with some kind of fluency. I did try to explain without going overboard, and I'm glad that balance worked for you!

Yeah, the name is the tricky thing--you see, it doesn't get revealed for another few chapters. But I promise that I had a reason for that when I wrote it, it wasn't an accident!

Thanks for loving my descriptions! You are the best!


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Review #7, by ravenclaw_princess Mint Chocolate Chip Memories

26th May 2016:
Hi. Here for BvB.

Yay. Your OC has a name :) I liked this chapter and after such a great set up with her pool mastery and then shooting down James, it was nice to see some exposition into her character. I find her very interesting. She says it herself, she is shy, struggles to make friends.which probably also translates to confidence issues and low self estimate. James Potter would not have helped in this. This is in far contrast to how we see her with pool. But these feelings still exist, hence her eating ice cream at 4 in the morning.

The flashback worked in well. It was clear that it was a flashback and fitted in with the stories overall flow and it didn't feel out of place. The whole paragraph seemed to be gearing up for a repressed memory to surface.

I like the interaction between the girls. Again, very natural dialogue. Hattie seems like a fun character.

I do like where this is going. I feel there is a lot more to the James and Annie story than we've heard so far. I also like how vehemently she is denying him what he wants and I hope that she sticks to her guns and takes James down a peg or two (or a hundred) I also wonder if there is something about Annie (other than her shyness) which caused James to pick on her.

Well done once again. This a is a great story and so well written that I know I'll be back.

Author's Response: Hi again!

Yes, she's got a name, hallelujah! I'm so happy to see that you still enjoyed the story, three chapters in. It's definitely a breath of fresh air to get some backstory going, even if it is a sad situation. And yeah, James did not make her Hogwarts years any easier.

Thanks! I love Hattie because she's a redhead and also awesome.

Oh yeah, there's so much more, but unfortunately, James is ridiculously persistent. You'll see--she's going to take him down a few pegs, but she's going to be seeing him a lot more often now.

Thanks again!

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Review #8, by ravenclaw_princess A Face From the Past

26th May 2016:
Hey. I'm here for BvB

I read the first chapter a while ago and really loved it so when I clicked onto your page I knew I had to read chapter two :)And chapter two is just as awesome as the first.

I love your characters. I still have no clue who the protagonist is, but I think now, that it's an OC, which wasn't what Id thought in my first chapter. She had a lot of depth to her. James brought out her fears and insecurities and you could sense her stiffen as memories of her past surface, but she managed to pull through them and bring out the confidence that she now has.

I don't particularly like James (I like how you've written him.just don't think he's a nice person). He is arrogant, self centered and totally privileged. I don't think Harry would be too proud of his attitude. It was so good to see your OC? put him in his place. He had this real sense of bravado to hima nd it was good to see him caught off guard and you captured his confusion in not being known quite well.

The whole chapter is beautifully written. The imagery is great, as are the details you include. The conversations seemed natural and the characters realistic. As I'm reading, I''m completely drawn in.

I had a few favourite pieces. One was your OC's explosive speech at James, putting him in his place. The second was this piece

"It was the gaze of a predator, as if I were a particularly delectable antelope standing in the path of a ravenous lion. (Or in more modern terms, a fine cut of meat on the butcherís block under scrutiny of a masculine steak connoisseur.)"

and I also like this line "My fragile self of long ago was encased in a shield of diamond, impossible to wound and fatal to touch"

Awesome job. I love it. So much so, I'm off to the next chapter right now.


Author's Response: Hi from almost a year ago!

Thanks for your review so much!

I'm so glad you like my characters, and yes I know it's really mean of me to withhold the OC's name, but I get there eventually, I promise! James does bring out the scared middle school child in her, but she's much more able to cover it up with confidence and condescension than she used to be!

Yeah, nobody really likes James because he's so obnoxious. I like him MUCH better in later chapters. He needs to check his privilege, and his dad needs to give him a stern talking-to. (But that probably won't happen.)

Thanks again! I'm so glad that you found some quotable moments and that you enjoyed reading!


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Review #9, by WaggyTail Secrets and Solidarity

23rd May 2016:
A pretty slow chapter, but excellent character development and I really like how Scorpius opened up to show how he wasn't as weak as he appeared. Mitch seems very amusing and I really like how you decided to make Annie asexual, as someone who is.

Thanks for updating! Can't wait to read what happens next. :)

Author's Response: Yeah, I find that sometimes chapters need to be a little slower just for my own sake, if nothing else! But I'm glad you liked the character development! Yes, I am a big fan of ace representation, because I'm ace too! Glad you enjoyed it! ♥

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Review #10, by oldershouldknowbetter Mint Chocolate Chip Memories

9th May 2016:
So, I'm here to tag you back for the BvB. I always wonder what it is that you've written that I can review, until I come to your page and find this excellent story and your Hefty Headlines one (for some reason your name doesn't stick in my mind as attached to them, go figure). So as you have not updated your story about Constance (places hands upon hips and gives Mallory a stern look) then I shall have to dip back into this one. Not that it is a terribly onerous burden to do so.

So our heroine has managed the journey home and in the aftermath of such an emotional roller-coaster of a night she seeks solace in ice-cream; as we are all want to do. Hence,as well, the title for this chapter. Though, there are some memories to come which, probably, 'may be upsetting to some viewers.' *sigh*

She lives modestly, as we probably suspected. It's not the high life for a pool shark in a London casino, quite understandably. But at least she has a friend and, happily for her, it is one whom obviously shares similar shifts as she does (at least on occasion). Speaking as a shift worker myself, I know how important that this can be.

And this friend is wonderful. Quite obviously, she is exactly the friend that she needs: comforting, supportive, true. But she does spill the beans to your audience and we finally learn your protagonists name: Portia Anne Collins, but Annie to her friends. One little possibility about her name just sprang into my mind. We were wondering, in the last chapter, if the mention of her name might cause James to remember her? But, what if she was known by Portia at school, and so, calling herself Anne to him, might still not jar any recognition from him? Just a thought, and I shall certainly see, shan't I.

Hattie asks her for her story of her night, and while she is revealing all, we are treated to a tour of the past. I like the way you are framing this story, it works well.

So we finally find out some details of her past and they are not all happy happy memories. Those concerning her friend are, but without her ...

Her actual, solid memory that you relate is awful. I mean, it's well written, but it's horrible. It does cement, though, one of the reasons the two girls are so close, but it's what it doesn't say that is intriguing. You very cleverly leave out the beginning of the encounter with James and only relate the aftermath. So we have no idea at all the context of it: why is he doing it; is he doing it alone or for an audience; and most importantly, what is it that he is bullying her about? That's what I wonder. It could be her shape, her looks, her lack of magical talent (that you allude to), her shyness, or even a big metaphorical kick-me sign that she wears. I really want to know, but the way this story is written, that information will be doled out only when you want it to.

After the action of the direct memory there is a bit more, but ... no you still don't mention exactly why she was being picked on; just that she was 'different'. But it does somewhat establish the timelines and having James be older than her. Which is a good choice, it helps 'improve' the power imbalance between them, and show why she was truly helpless against him.

You wrap up the chapter with a suitable ending; one in which we obliquely find out that her room-mate has a boyfriend. She thinks it's all over and done with - she did her best to dissuade the stupid sod (yes, I think that the description is accurate) - but she is forgetting about the obstinacy of the denied. Certain people cannot let something go, especially when they are told that they cannot have it. In a lovely 'author turns to camera' you tell us as much in no uncertain terms.

As to your final questions:-

- exposition: there is not enough (see the notes above), but there is probably as much as we need for the moment. More about the girl will have to be revealed, but it will probably be best left for an emotional scene to come and, knowing you, it will be big and messy and highly emotional (for us poor readers at the very least)
- flashback: fine. Also see the notes above.
- name revealed: phew, finally ;)
- things to be worried about the chapter: none.


Author's Response: Hi again!

Yes, I love Hattie because she's sympathetic, but also not awfully afraid to call Annie out for being a drama queen. :)

Haha, finally a name! The name thing does take a long time to tease out, but yeah, James definitely wouldn't recognize her if she asked him to call her Annie because he didn't know her middle name at Hogwarts, and he called her mean nicknames all the time anyway. So that wouldn't really jog his memory. (Add to that the fact that she doesn't look much like she used to, and he's totally in the dark.)

Lol yeah, the memory is really awful (more bullying). James is the type that doesn't need a context--he just does what he wants and nobody really stops or questions him. And that seriously sucks. There's definitely a power balance--both in age as well as popularity--not saying that popular people don't get bullied too, but they have more people on their side and (usually) more followers and yes-men (like James has).

Yeah, James isn't gonna let it go. Not by a long shot.

Hahaha, things do get emotional in several chapters. It's a roller coaster that you might beg to get off of.


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Review #11, by Startafire A Face From the Past

22nd April 2016:
Hello Mallory! Here for our swap!

I really am glad I've started to read this, only two chapters in and I'm absolutely intrigued by your original character, she's simply mesmerising to read! The way you described her in the first chapter when she was playing the married man was just pure genius. I was rooting for her all the way through the time she was playing him and actually found myself grinning like a idiot when she really showed him who's boss, deserved him right! I'm really eager to know more about her time at Hogwarts and how she become this sultry and mysterious women she is now.

Your attention to detail is absolutely on point, the way you paint each scene really makes me feel like I'm there, watching as everything is happening, just like James was. The fact that the first two chapters are set in a muggle setting yet everything about it is simply magical and enticing just pulls me in even more to the world you've created!

Ah James, the cocky son of the chosen one, we all know and love. I really love him in this chapter and especially the way your OC belittles him. At first he seems almost perfect, knowing exactly what to say at the right time and then out of no where we found he's not only bad at pool, he doesn't know how to play it! I burst out laughing, I love this flaw and how embarrassed he gets.

You've intrigued me in more ways words can described and I honestly can not wait to read on and find out more.

This isn't the last you have heard from me, I shall definitely be leaving future reviews!


Author's Response: Hi from almost a year into the future!

Thanks for swapping with me on one of my favorite stories that I've ever written! This OC is my baby, my precious bad child, and I'm so glad you like her! She's definitely the boss in this situation, even though she stumbled a little at first.

Thank you! I loved writing the casino because it's right on the line between Muggle and magical, so wild things are bound to happen!

James is the worst, but also my bad child. He's so arrogant and ridiculous that he NEEDS someone to tell him what's up. And he's inept at pool, so he really should be begging for her help.

I hope that if you read on back in the day, that you enjoyed it!


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Review #12, by Ray Things Fall Apart

22nd April 2016:
Brilliant, simply brilliant chapter. I love the way it went from so calm to sad so quickly and her mum's embarrassing comments.

Author's Response: Aww, thank you so much! It really means a lot that you reviewed. :)

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Review #13, by Ray Hidden Agendas and Binding Contracts

9th April 2016:
I really want to give this story a review because I read it all last night and loved it. But I have no clue what to say besides I really want to read the rest and to know what James did that Freddy wants to reveal.

The only thing i dislike about the story is the chapters that are only flashbacks. I would love it better for the flashbacks to be weaved more into the story.

Author's Response: Thanks so much for stopping to leave a review!

Yeah, I really should work on that a little, but life keeps getting in the way, unfortunately.

Thanks again!

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Review #14, by oldershouldknowbetter A Face From the Past

21st March 2016:
Hi there, back for some BvB-Diadems action.

I knew I had reviewed the first chapter before, ages ago. I re-read the review to my absolute shame - I'd obviously done it at the beginning of my foray into reviewing. Itís so short and it pains me to claim it as one of my own. Well I shall have to rectify the situation and give you a lovely long review this time.

My suppositions for just who the characters were going to be was so off the mark. One of the taglines for the story was that it was a Rose/Scorpius pairing, that must still happen, but from what we witness in this chapter, it must happen in the background.

We were left in the last chapter with a mysterious figure applauding the skill with which your heroine dispatched the drunken bumbler. That's all and good, but when the figure resolves itself into a discernable character, the feelings that it arouses within the heart of your heroine are anything but good.

We don't have to wait long to find out why the figure caused your heroine such anguish: he was a bully and at least one of his targets was her. All the emotions she goes through as he approaches ring so true. I have been the victim of bullying and it sure does leave its share of emotional scars. She says that she has replaced her childhood anguish with anger, good for her, but her thoughts afterwards betray her as she slips back into some of that fear.

I want to take a second to talk about the way you draw these characters. And I have to say characters because we still don't know exactly who they are (the leering male, at this stage, could either be James or Albus). All these males are drawn so viscerally. From that slug of a man in the first chapter, who slimed his way up to your heroine and then, due to her machinations had to crawl away. And now this Potter boy, who comes across as a lecherous creep. The decision to not go for an explicit name for the first awful lump of humanity and now the same for this second - who is much more beguiling, but all the worse for it - is a masterful stroke. It allows you to fully shape the characters of these men (as I say the words in my mind, I cannot help but give 'men' a pejorative inflexion).

Your heroine is hamstrung by her old fears and her position in the club, but she is not out for the count. She can still handle herself and the way she eludes his advances brings out the petulant child in him - I wanted to use my own words but you phrased it best. She knows she is damned if she doesn't move - he will get her - and damned if she does - he will pursue her. But that whining, 'don't you know who I am' really sinks him lower in this reader's estimation at least. And hers too. It goads her into responding equally childlike with the same expression.

To her astonishment, he doesnít know her. It almost floors her. I can just imagine it, he was such a figure of abuse and torment for her, he would always loom large in her mind. But the other way, she was just another victim, to be used, abused and forgotten. It makes bullying that much worse when you find out that as much as they affected you, you meant nothing to them. This really is powerful stuff. And I love how she is bombarding him with words greater than one syllable and he is stuck in the rut of the repeating same simple sentence.

Finally it is revealed that it is in fact James, the eldest - phew, I didnít really want it to be Albus.

The same erudition is now repeated in her thoughts; as sheís gaining in confidence so is her word use. You use it to such a good effect.

Then she turns the tables on him, Am I supposed to know your name?Ē Beautiful.

And it goes on and on; as she is getting stronger and stronger against him, he is getting weaker. She is in her element, her place of power and she has robbed him of any power that his false confidence gave him. She forces the truth out of him, but itís more his pick-up line and his pedigree than truth. She challenges him to a game, feeling so much more in control than when she first saw him. And thatís when the first of the real truths emerge - he can not play pool but desperately wants to learn.

She takes such delight in refusing his entreaty. Oh how the worm has turned. And she rubs it in too. Of course she knew his name, who he was, but her actions have shown to him that it means less than nothing to her.

Then desperation forces him to become physical in a way - to do him justice - that he probably never wanted. It comes out that he has made a bet that will result in his ego-death if he loses. Itís just like the character of him that youíve established, his ego would make a bet that his physical self could not hope to win.

She refuses him again, but itís not delight this time. This is well done, sheís gone beyond pleasure in his ignominy - the way he cringes when she turns to him - no, heís almost pathetic in her eyes. She goes calm in the face of it. He tries to capture her name, to wrest some power over her - and it would, because once you get into the realm of matching names, his will always win out. She points out the magical power of names, but it is a more prosaic power that she doesnít want to hand over to him. Perhaps the mention of her name may prompt a memory of her to surface, but I get the feeling that it probably wonít; he might be so caught up in his own sense of self worth that he truly has forgotten everything about her.

She leaves him a pathetic wretch, like Lizzy does to Darcy, knowing that for all his supposed worth he has nothing of value to somebody who is truly worthy.

Wow, this chapter takes off. You do establish some vital plot points in here, we do leave this chapter knowing some of the shape of things to come. But otherwise the plot is overwhelmed by the sheer staggering scope of the characterisation. The emotional journey that you put them both through is astounding; as one character rises the other falls away into opprobrium and defeat.


Author's Response: Hi again!

Haha, no worries--we ALL were at the beginning of our reviewing journeys at one point, and I mean, look how incredible you are at reviewing now! Holy smokes!

Yeah, unfortunately for Scorose shippers, the Scorpius/Rose tag was the only concrete ship that I could find, so I tagged it (even though it's kind of misleading).

Haha, I'm realizing now that you experienced two of my stories dealing with bullying in kind of rapid succession. Sorry about that--the themes in PfK and Hefty Headlines are similar, but PfK is definitely more fleshed out. But yeah, the MC has run into a blast from the past, and it's not a good thing. Potter IS a lecherous creep in this chapter, and the effect that he has on the MC is incredibly dramatic.

But yeah, the MC can really navigate her experience better now than she could in her childhood. She's ready to fight, and fight she does!

I really loved writing her getting stronger as James had to back off. He's so arrogant, and she's taking him down, one peg at a time. And she has the right of refusal, and she uses it--to great effect.

This is only the beginning, and honestly, it's my favorite part of this whole fic, since it's so shaded in mystery and everything. Thanks again for your amazing, thorough review!


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Review #15, by cherry_pop94 Hidden Agendas and Binding Contracts

26th February 2016:
Hello! Here for the swap!

As you know, I love this story. It's just really great and this chapter was no exception! I am sad that I've now got to start waiting for updates!

I really liked how you brought in Albus to explore more of what the Potter family is like. At least he remembers who Anne is even if James still doesn't. I am excited to see how he reacts when he finally figures it out though! It's interesting how Albus is an auror while Freddy and Rose are so involved with the criminal underworld. That's got to make for some awkward family dinners. And now James is clearly involved in something shady too!

Your scenes in the casino are always phenomenal. I love the way you've built up this seedy world. Its a really cool detail that no one in the general public knows that Freddy runs the Shooting Star. Its such a great idea to have that be the case. I am also definitely a big fan of his alias. The excess and sin and gluttony embodied by the casino definitely recalls the themes of that in the Great Gatsby. And Jay Thistlewaite is just a really good name for a shady casino owner. It just sounds right.

I am also really, really glad that you're not going down the romance route for Anne and James. He is terrible to her and she has every right to hate him. I am super curious about how she handles the bet though! She clearly had some moral qualms about Rose's whole operation. But Rose is giving her a way to achieve her lifelong dream. That's got to be a tough call for her.

This is so deserving of the Diadem soty nomination! I'm definitely going to go second that nomination if it hasn't already and drop in a nomination for best OC too! I'm just in love with Anne!

Thanks for a great swap and a simply marvelous story. I cannot wait for the next update!


Author's Response: Awww, the last of your reviews from last year! Thanks again so much for all of these beauties. ♥

I love this version of Albus because he's so serious. He loves James, even though he thinks James is absolutely stupid, and even though he can talk bad about his brother and will let other people do it too (to some extent), he's not going to let James get dragged down into criminal activity. (Ah, if only he knew that it's already happened!) Yeah, the Weasley relatives don't get together too much, mostly because half are boring do-gooders and the other half are evil crime geniuses. :)

Thank you! I love the casino too because I get to be as mysterious and intriguing as I want! Hahaha, Freddy's alias was made up at the last second and I really need to incorporate it more in earlier chapters. It's something I love, but darn, I could do it better!

Lolol, *trying* not to go down the romance route. I definitely don't think they need to end up together, but the story sometimes leans too far in that direction. I'm trying, though. I really am.

Thank you so so much!! You are the best!


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Review #16, by cherry_pop94 It's a Man's World?

18th February 2016:
YAAS Rose! Criminal underworld QUEEN.

Hearing about Scorpius made me crack up. Oh my god, he acts like a sad puppy! I feel really bad for the poor guy. His girlfriend is TERRIFYING. But I love her. She's amazing. Rose has very quickly become my second favourite character in all this after Annie.

I absolutely love how you explore gender politics in this. It's clearly, as you say, a man's world out there. Rose, though obviously a boss lady, has some internalized misogyny going on with her dismissal of all other women so soon. And then of course there's the men's blatant misogyny. Not just from Delun, but all the men in this story have shown sexism so far. James with his entitled attitude towards Annie, her time, and her skills. Freddy with his dress policies, pet names, and general attitude towards the women who work at his casino. Every single man Annie interacts with at work. Everyone. Everyone is a sexist.

I think it's pretty representative of the real world to be honest. Annie, in her job at the Shooting Star, plays up her sexuality. She has complete agency of the situation, it seems, but then she still reports back to a man. She seems to in control, but she still acts and behaves according to these patriarchal rules, even if she does flip them on her victims. It's a weird interplay of Anne holding all this power over men, but then there's still a man holding power over her. And then with Rose! So now we know that she holds power over Freddy! But at the same time, I think Rose is still deeply under the influence of a patriarchal system. She lives in a man's world and has succeeded despite it, but as I said before, she seems to have quite a bit of internalized misogyny.

And then there's James! He obviously isn't as much of an out and out sexist as the other men, especially the ones in this chapter, but I think he is still sexist. He acts entitled to Anne's time. He acts entitled towards her body. He coerced her into spending time with him. It's not sexism so much just that he comes from a place of such extreme privilege and acts with so much entitlement.

And then there's Scorpius! Oh my. Poor little Scorpius. I do hope we see more of him, by the way. It's a massive inversion of gender roles there, isn't it? We've got crime boss Rose with her arm candy Scorpius who she's with for his connections. She's absolutely in control of him it seems.

Once again, I love this story so much. It's definitely got me pulled in and I just cannot wait to read more of this incredible world! Is it terrible that I almost hope that Anne beats James in pool and then ruins his life and rises to the top of the criminal underworld with Rose?

Bah, this story makes me crazy.


Author's Response: OMG Stefanie you are killing me with these year-old reviews that I keep coming back to so that I can read them again and again

Scorpius is my sweet innocent child who doesn't deserve most of the nonsense he gets from his girlfriend's gang. LOLOLOL I'm glad that Rose is your second favorite character, because she's actually my LEAST favorite character to write (that's unfortunate, but alas). But yeah, she's a wild card for sure.

I like exploring gender politics, even though when I wrote these chapters I didn't know enough about anything to truly know what I was talking about lol. Rose is SO INTERNALLY MISOGYNISTIC THAT IT KILLS ME. And Delun Chang is the worst, period. James is bad, Freddy is bad, and you know, later on some of these characters will masquerade under the guise of """feminism""" but it's all fake. The jerks!

Yeah, Annie plays up her sexuality but! but! but! there's more (or maybe less?) to her sexuality than meets the eye. (And THAT only took me like 20 chapters to get to, but still.) She's kind of doing a thing where she navigates through the patriarchy, but she doesn't always do it in ways that are intersectional or helpful to herself/other women. (It's a learning curve with her, and honestly I'm still trying to coach her through it.) YASSS, Rose is TOTALLY doing that thing where she's made a patriarchal bargain--she has ULTIMATE POWER but she's got it in a way that doesn't really pull her out of the patriarchal quagmire. Seriously, she needs to learn something.

James is mostly a dumb, clueless jock who gets offended whenever anyone calls him a dumb, clueless jock. But it's true. Still, I think he's the character who's going to be the easiest to teach about this stuff. He's got privilege by the boatloads, but he's not fully aware of it, you know? He's got a long way to go.

Scorpius is definitely where he belongs, personality-wise. Rose is so overblown and high powered that if she had a boyfriend who was TRULY a powerful guy, she would end up going crazy (well, crazier than she already is). Scorpius is definitely arm candy, but wait! there's more! He's got a little more to his personality than meets the eye right now, and eventually he'll come into his own. Trust me!

LOLOLOL if ONLY I were that creative! You'll just have to see what happens, but I love the way you think!

lol, this story makes me crazy too. especially since i haven't written anything for months and months.


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Review #17, by cherry_pop94 One Secret Meeting, Intrigue Included

18th February 2016:
Oh my god! Rose Weasley!

Wow. Queen of the underworld. These Weasley kids really didn't follow their parents footsteps did they? I LOVE of subordinate they all are to her. Even though Rose is a terrifying criminal, I can tell I'm going to fall in love with her. I'm sure that Rose and Anne already know each other, right? Anne is so sure already that Rose hates her and if I'm correct, they were in the same year.

I'm also wondering how Rose became the underworld queen so young. She's what, 21, 22? I love it. She seems amazing already!! I can't wait to know more!


Author's Response: Rose is the devil, but she's also awesome, but she's also super misogynistic so I'm constantly conflicted about her.

NOPE the Weasleys are #REBELLIOUS and they can't be told what to do! (Except some of them DID follow in their parents' footsteps, just not Rose, Freddy, and various&sundry others.) Yeah, I hope you don't fall too far in love with her though, because she's truly a ♥breaker. Like, she's really the worst.

Annie and Rose were in the same year! So they do know each other, but my characters do this thing where they pretend NOT to know each other. Anyway, they weren't friends at all, but Rose pays more attention to her surroundings than Annie truly realizes lol.

Yeah, Rose really works fast. You'll (kind of) get an explanation for that later. (Hint: it's all about connections, and Rose is dating a Malfoy *wink wink*)


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Review #18, by cherry_pop94 Aftermath and Arrangements

18th February 2016:
I love Hattie. And I love (hate?) Freddy. He's so funny, but super creepy also, and kind of charming, but so sleazy. And I love that he wears zoot suits. That cracked me up.

I really want to know more about the Life and Times of Harry Potter. A sappy soap opera version of his life is exactly what I want. Wow, I never knew how much I needed that.

Love this!


Author's Response: Hi again!

It's still over a year since you wrote this, but I'm responding because I owe you that much for writing me such sweet reviews!

I love Hattie too! She is also bae. And Freddy is ridiculously creepy, but then when he calms down, he's not bad (but he's always a sleaze. You take the good with the bad, I guess.). Yeah, my man Freddy is truly into the zoot suit riot. They really don't do anything for his figure, but you can BET that he's got all kinds of ridiculous patterns and such that kind of work, you know?

I really want to write a fic that focuses on the Life and Times of Harry Potter as a soap opera. I think that would be hilarious. But with what time...? looolll I am the worst.

Thanks again for reading and reviewing!


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Review #19, by cherry_pop94 The Woes of Working Retail

18th February 2016:
Ahh James! That turd. I can't believe he didn't recognize her AGAIN! And that he was so callous and entitled and rude!! He's forced her to teach him to play pool! What an entitled brat! Plus, this just goes to show how much attention he was paying to her face at the casino...

I hope that Anne destroys his life as she teaches him pool. I'm very, very excited to see how this plays out!!


Author's Response: Yeah, James can be the absolute worst. He's SO callous and rude, you're right!

Lololol, Annie might destroy his life, but not before he destroys hers. Idk, these characters have minds of their own sometimes!

Thanks for all the lovely reviews (from one year ago lolol)!


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Review #20, by cherry_pop94 A Face From the Past

18th February 2016:
I thought I might wait to read the next chapter, but evidently I'm not. This is just too good. I really, really, really don't have time to be reading this, but I can't help myself!

I loved this!! I was wondering who this was at first. I saw that the tags for this story have Rose and Scorpius, so at first I thought perhaps the man was Scorpius and the girl was Rose. But clearly not.

I adore how you've written James Potter here. I mean, I don't really like him. He's a turd, but I do love how he's written. His personality comes across so strongly. But this girl is beating him in his own game. I can't believe he doesn't remember her! What? She got hotter after finishing school and now he wants to get in her pants?? Oh sod off James. I love how quickly she shut him down and put him in his place!

I do wonder what sort of trouble James has gotten himself into though. Seems a bit strange that so much is riding on a game of pool! I do love it though! I can't wait to see what becomes of all this. And the ending is great! There's power in a name. How right she is!

Ugh, I can't wait to read more. And I will surely read the next chapter right now.


Author's Response: Stefanie!

It has now been over a year since you wrote this review. OVER A YEAR!!! I am the WORST, but THANK YOU FOR REVIEWING!

okay, enough yelling

Yeah, the tags are inadequate to describe the situation really, because you go in expecting Scorose and you come out expecting ??? (even I don't know what to expect lol)

James Potter II is actually bae, but I keep writing him as a big ol' meaniehead. Idk, it's fun I guess. He doesn't remember her because he's a narcissistic jerk, that's why! I love shutting down gross male characters (and female characters) in my writing lol.

He's definitely in trouble, but it takes like 99 more chapters for me to reveal exactly what kind of trouble lol. This fic is a mess but I love writing it, so I'm glad that you enjoyed reading it (one year and some months ago looolll)


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Review #21, by cherry_pop94 Shooting Star, After Midnight

18th February 2016:
Hello! I'm here for Bvb!

This has been on my list for a while and I can't believe I'm just getting to this now! It was BRILLIANT. Wow. I'm just in awe of how amazing this was.

It was a mixture of sultry, intriguing, mysterious! I am itching to know what happens next! This woman's flirt game is STRONG. I was swooning for her. And you descriptions of everything were so evocative. You paint this hazy, sleazy picture in my head of this magical casino. I could see everything happening in my head, I could hear her voice, the man's slur. I could practically SMELL the booze and cigarettes in the air!

This really is an incredible story! I'm so hooked already! I can't wait to read more. So deserving of the Diadem!


Author's Response: Hi Stefanie!

I'm so sorry I took so long to respond to your lovely review!

Thanks so so much! I really love writing my MC because she's so suave here (and then so not-suave later on). Aw, I'm so glad you like my description here! I really like description, when I can use it effectively.

Thanks again, so much!

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Review #22, by BellaLestrange87 A Face From the Past

17th February 2016:
This is for the Blue vs. Bronze review battle! And I'm finally back after taking way too long to return to this story... *oops*

I'm really curious to find out what's between the MC (whose name I don't remember) and James. It's definitely not positive, but I can't wait to find out exactly why he was tormenting her and for what reason.

The opening words of their conversation seem really interesting. To me, it feels as if everything they're saying has some sort of added significance, or additional meaning (or maybe I'm reading too much into this :p)

Hmmm. At this point, with the repeated "Do you know who I am?" I'm not quite sure what's going on. Is James suffering from memory loss, or is he just pretending to be more of a jerk and keep tormenting her? This is even more interesting.

I'm really happy that the MC is a lot more confident now that she was before. I also think that the fact that James can't really hold a one-on-one conversation shows a lot about his character. If he's more used to smiling for the cameras and being famous than talking to normal people - like a normal person - then I think he'll act more arrogant as the chapter goes on.

Ooh. I'm really curious about what's going on with James. His cousin knows things that could ruin his reputation? What kind of things? Which cousin? I can't wait to (take another lifetime to *whistles*) return to the next chapter!


Author's Response: Hi Olivia!

Here I am, almost a year later, responding at last.

Yeah, nothing pleasant between the ol' MC and James. All of that comes later, along with her name. (I haven't revealed it yet at this point in the story, haha.) :)

James is both a jerk AND he can't figure out why somebody doesn't know who he is (because he's famous lolol). The MC is much more confident now, but James has a LONG way to go in the "coming down from his high horse" journey.

Yep! There's lots going on in the next few chapters! Thanks again for reading!


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Review #23, by Veritaserum27 It's a Man's World?

16th February 2016:
Hi there Mallory!

I'm here for the BvB and I was SO excited to see that you'd posted so I could get back to this story. Holy cow I have quite a few chapters to catch up on, huh?

Okay, so a TON of stuff happened in this chapter. Actually, I feel like this is the beginning of the next section of the story. We meet the next group of characters that (I think) Annie will be spending quite a bit of time with for the next few months or so.

Aaannnd - I didn't really think anyone was going to irritate me more than Freddy's treatment of Annie, but SHEESH! These people are vile.

A moment to Honor the Great Mallory for creating this AMAZING world. I mean, I was really drawn in to their seediness. My, how the next-gen has fallen! Rose is the ring leader for an underground group of thugs, Scorpius is her (hopefully) willing sidekick. Seamus and Dean's son is beyond creepy and Cho's son is downright a word that I can't type in this review because it wouldn't follow TOS.

Haha - I didn't have much hope for McLaggen's kid and literally anything is possible for Luna's kids, but I think that Lorcan might be mostly harmless.

The scene was written fantastically - it unfolded nicely as you introduced a whole slew of people that are pretty important to the plot. I haven't yet commented on Rose - but she seems characterized really well. I'm glad Annie is keeping her at a bit of a distance for now - however my intuition tells me that those two will get on swimmingly.

The biggest surprise for me in this chapter was Freddy. He checked up on Annie twice, asking if she was okay. This seemed really out of character for him, although I have a feeling he was trying to protect his investment - but maybe it's a bit more and he's not quite as vile as he seems. Or maybe he's just not as vile as the rest of that lot.

Anyway, this was an amazing, fabulous, incredibly well-written chapter to this story! I can't wait to keep reading it!

♥ Beth

Author's Response: Hi Beth!

Here I am, almost a whole year later. Whoops. I'm sorry for not responding sooner!

Yeah, Freddy is kind of revolting, but he's got hidden depths, I promise! He really comes into his own in later chapters, but for now, he's pretty gross.

Lolol, thanks so much! ♥ Yeah, I love writing fallen!Next Gen because they're SO bad. They're my cabinet of bad babies, and they're all creeps. Lorcan may very well be harmless, but he's also implicated in this whole scheme, so how harmless can he be?

THanks so much! Yes, Rose is the Big Bad here--fighting fire with fire, but not taking any crud from other people. (And thereby internalizing misogyny and being a general jerk.) Annie is really not convinced by her, but that'll all come to a head later.

Yeah, like I said, Freddy is one of those characters that starts out pretty gross, but he's got hidden depths. He cares but doesn't care, and yeah, he's a businessman so he's all about protecting his investments. He's definitely not quite as vile as the others, but yeah, he's a conflicting character.

Thanks for your review!

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Review #24, by lhod23 Hidden Agendas and Binding Contracts

20th December 2015:
I am really enjoying this story. I love your unique take on Freddy, Rose, and Scorpius. You have something really amazing here so I hope to see more chapters soon :)

Author's Response: Aww, thank you! I hope you have been coming back to check out the updates since you wrote this review. (It's literally been months since I answered reviews.) But thanks again for reading and enjoying!

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Review #25, by Shadowkat Blood Thicker Than Mashed Potatoes

20th September 2015:
Finally here after rereading all of it to refresh my memory, and here's some things that stood out to me:

-James is a prat
-Fred is a bigger prat
-Rose is even a BIGGER prat
-Change is the BIGGEST prat

Here's a few more:
-Thank goodness for Hettie
-James is hopeless
-Annie is awesome
-And shoot, our favorite pool player is really in deep.

So, I absolutely love your style, and from the start this story completely sucked me in. The characters are wonderfully three-dimensional, the plot is new and refreshing, and I haven't read anything like this before, so I have no idea what to expect. I'm really sorry for the wait, but as you can see, I didn't forget!

I'm so glad to hear you're not going the romance route. It's nice to see that, as it happens far too much. I like to read things every now and again that can have a male and female main cast without them getting together. Not to mention that drunk James scene made me remember exactly why it should never happen here. He deserved everything he got for that.

10/10, because even my rating stinginess can't hold up to this.

I feel like I should be able to say much more, especially after so long.

Author's Response: Kat! Sorry it's been so long since I've responded.

Haha, thank you for reading and rereading! You're so awesome!

Here are my thoughts about your thoughts:

-mega agree
-mega mega agree
-SUPER mega agree!

-Hattie is bae
-James is so dumb
-Annie is cool, but often too opinionated
-Yep, she's in super deep!

Thank you! I always worry that the last nineteen chapters don't live up to the first chapter, but I'm so glad you were sucked in! Honestly, the characters are my favorite part because they're so weird. I love making up new facets of their personalities! The plot is difficult, but fun! I call this story my "soapbox novel" because it keeps giving me an outlet to rant about things. :)

Yeah, romance was a possibility, but I decided against it pretty early on. Too much else going on for a relationship on the side! Yeah, drunk!James had some very, very bad ideas.

Oh wow, I feel so awesome! Thanks for that praise! :D

Nah, it's cool! Thanks for your review!


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