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Reading Reviews for A Single Point In Time
  
65 Reviews Found

Review #1, by alexaemd123 1984

9th February 2017:
First of all, I love how you write and how in your writing you portray these characters so well! Thank you for writing these short stories! They are truly amazing!

1981: I loved how you described Albus' surroundings! I loved how the picture talked to him and so there are so many wonderful things I could review about all four of these chapters. I mostly liked how Albus knew it was Snape frantically walking up his steps to his office. We obviously know why this is happening and I love that it leaves you on a sort of cliff-hanger, yet we know exactly what they will talk about! It was very well written.
1982: Petunia seemed very real to me and not in her usual cold self. I liked this side of Petunia. She showed that in her heart, she can care for Harry, even if she doesn't see it for herself. She almost did give Harry love, and in a way she let him in slightly by letting Harry hold her finger. She then of course, as I expected, turned away and shut him out because I think it's too painful for her. Her sister's death, even though she makes herself believe that she doesn't miss her, was hard hard for her and Harry is a reminder of what she lost. This chapter was well written and made me sad for Harry but also for Petunia.

1983: This one made me very sad, because not only is Sirius my most favorite character in the whole series, but because you see Sirius give up on, in a way, his humanity. He wished he knew Harry, he wished James was alive, and he wished he had a chance at life. I loved the way you wrote this. You made Sirius very real and you see how badly he is deteriorating. He is giving up and that should make whoever reads this, sad. It's a very well written chapter.

1984: Narcissa in a way is a very had character to read. In some ways, I do see her as a cold person. I mean, her husband and her son were both cold in many ways, so why wouldn't she be? She was the one who raised Draco in the first place and if she wasn't a cold person, Draco wouldn't have been. You live what you learn. And in this particular chapter, you kinda see a little lightness for a couple split seconds. You wonder if there is something other than this blockade she puts up to show her formal, wife mask she has. Maybe it's not a mask, we will never know, but other than that, I loved the way you described everything about this chapter!

Overall, I completely loved these short stories! I hope I didn't bore you with my little rants. I only review on stories I either love sooo much lol or I believe are very well-written and have heart, which deserves a review! So please continue these stories! It's been a while since you wrote a short story! SO hopefully you didn't abandon this because it is very very good! So thank you for taking the time to write these stories!

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Review #2, by PaulaTheProkaryote 1982

21st April 2016:
Hello! Back again for BvB!
I really enjoyed this chapter because I think Petunia is an overall underdeveloped fanfiction character. She seems to be mostly ignored.

I truly appreciate the way you characterized her. She was still bitter. Still harboring all of that resentment and an overall noxious person, but she wasn't as awful as she was in the books. There was still that bit of humanity left inside her. She comforted the baby she resented despite having such complicated feelings.

I also really enjoyed her own vulnerability with Harry, even though she took it all back. I think she's got a bit of guilt mostly that she never resolved things with her sister. Harry would be a constant reminder of her pettiness that I think she'd like to sweep under the rug.

Also, her relationship with Vernon was interesting. He seems gentle with her and concerned that she still couldn't sleep, but still a brusque sort of response to it that she should just try to sleep. I think he didn't realize that it was the anniversary of the death and I don't think he would have thought that it would really matter much to her to begin with.

The end when she holds Dudley, it makes sense. No matter what, he's her offspring and thereby what she loves most. Harry will never compare, he'll always just be an unwanted responsibility. At least she recognizes that he will always face this loneliness.

I think you did a really excellent job with the dialogue, but also the development of Petunia as a character. You gave her depth instead of completely breaking her.

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Review #3, by PaulaTheProkaryote 1981

21st April 2016:
Hello there! I'm here for BvB!

I'm glad you painted Dumbledore the way that you did. Sometimes I read him as more cold and calculating, but I don't think that's true of him at all. I think it makes much more sense for him to sit in his office and be worried about Harry all night. I mean, he literally just dropped a baby on someone's doorstep. You did a really good job portraying him as a dimensional, realistic character.

It really shouldn't have ended like that. There was bound to be another way. But I suppose that's war.

I like that while everyone else is celebrating, Dumbledore is sitting there with a heavy heart. They weren't just his ex-students he lost, they were people he knew only too well. Voldemort really left a devastating blow on those closest to Dumbledore. How many families had to be ripped apart for them to win the war?

I like the way you ended it with Severus and his undoubted grief. The way you wrote this story makes my heart ache all around. I think you did an excellent job at portraying the torn feelings that Dumbledore must have felt (along with a lot of people that probably fought alongside him). Terrible sacrifices were made and the war is over, but how do you celebrate with so much blood?

I can't wait to read the next chapter in Petunia's perspective. It's bound to be insightful to her character development.

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Review #4, by Tonks1247 1984

22nd March 2016:
Woah. So I decided another chapter in light of the BVB Blitz going on was a must and just…totally blown away by this. Like, for entirely different reasons than every other chapter this story has contained.

You’ve constructed Narcissa’s character in such a unique way. Like, I can entirely admit that I’ve never really read stories that centred on her character, and maybe not even considered much about her character, but upon reading her…I envision her character so differently. The fact that having a child wasn’t on her agenda and it was unwanted and unexpected…it puts different expectations on Draco growing up and it explains a lot, I think. It shows how Narcissa is so used to playing a certain part, of being a wife, of being picture perfect, of standing beside her husband as he talks himself into good positions and charms people…and to have a sun changed that. She still has that expectation but it’s almost like she resents (And maybe resent is too strong a word) it. Like it’s not the same now that she has to tend to a baby. Like everything she’s been through hasn’t prepared her for this, and it’s because of the war, and it’s because things changed so fast and because her family was standing where they were when everything fell apart.

Honestly, you gave me a lot to think about in this chapter and I’m quite happy the idea is planted and I’ve got something new and different to ponder...

Lovely story, lovely chapter!
-Mikaela

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Review #5, by Tonks1247 1983

22nd March 2016:
Hiya! Nymphie Tonks here, stopping by as part of the BVB Blitz round!

I was pretty heartbroken at this chapter. Like, the two previous ones were pretty difficult to read as the emotions portrayed are so dark and tragic, but this…just…it’s so, so sad.

Sirius’ entire situation just kills me. Like, he’s imprisoned for a crime he didn’t commit. He’s framed as a murderer while the real murderer is hiding out as a rat after blowing up people and selling out James and Lily. And that’s not even the worst part. The worst part is he’s forced to forget himself, to separate himself into this two beings, one that can survive the Dementors and prison and the other that only holds the shreds of a man who once lived.

The description, the way he uses the mind of a dog, the blankness, the unthinking, to protect himself…like honestly, I could imagine nothing worse. Especially as it almost seems as his survival instinct takes over. Even if he wants to stay human, and wants these memories he still has, he’s forced into the unthinking, the uncomprehending because otherwise he faces insanity. I don’t even know how to process what you’ve put into this chapter, put into Sirius’ character at this point in time. It’s tragic and just…it was a moment that you captured so perfectly and I love it.

Really, really great job with it. I loved it. And here are two lines that stuck out to me….

”He thought often of James, of his dead white body, once handsome too, and how they were now both trapped in a damp little box that surrounded them.”

“He cast his eyes upwards, outwards, through the bars of his window once again, breathing steadily, trying to catch the gaze of the moon.”


Lovely job, again.
-Mikaela

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Review #6, by Felpata Lupin 1984

25th August 2015:
Happy birthday, Laura!!!

Hope you don't mind if I'm reviewing only on this last chapter, but I was so enthralled by your writing that I had to read all four one after the other!!!

I really love the idea behind the story, to show how the Potters' death and Voldemort's fall have affected so many different characters in so many contrasting ways. And you really do a spectacular job at showing it!!! All characters are portrayed brilliantly, the descriptions are simply amazing and the writing is captivating and just beautiful!!!

I'm sorry I can't leave a more thoughtful review, I'm just in awe by the beauty of what you've written!!!

Hope you're having a nice day!!!
Much love,
Chiara

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Review #7, by navyfail 1981

11th August 2015:
I've been wanting to read this story from some time and I've finally sat down and read the first chapter, yay! I usually don't read much from Albus Dumbledore's point of view so when I do, I'm always intrigued by the different ways authors write him. There are a couple aspects that I liked very much about this chapter: the mention of the loss of sparkle in his eyes since that's a big part of his appearance, how he wonders about Harry and if he made the right decision, your description such as "that angry red lightning bolt scar, so brash and enflamed, had almost torn his fragile skull apart" and " it reminded Albus faintly of blood." The tone you've set up matches the mood of the time well, I think. You can feel the relief of the Dark Lord being gone, but also the layer of sadness underneath of the loss of both Lily and James to death, and Harry to the Muggle World. And throughout the story, I see Dumbledore in a lot of your sentences... the constant wondering, the slight philosophical edge... so in my opinion, I think you nailed his character. In addition, I think mentioning Headmaster Phineas adds to the story since whenever I imagine the Headmaster/Headmistress's office I always remember the portraits. And mentioning Petuna Dursely and Severus Snape was a good way to end the chapter! I really enjoyed reading this and will add it to my reading list and hopefully come back soon to read and review the rest of the chapters!

~Sama

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Review #8, by nott theodore 1984

11th August 2015:
Hi again, Laura! I'm really enjoying this story so far - I'm looking forward to reading about the next character you decide to focus on and their story, too!

I honestly don't think that I've ever seen a portrayal of Narcissa that comes close to this in fanfiction before - I haven't read a lot of stories about her, but I have read quite a few and I don't think I've ever seen a story that has such an unsympathetic, Lady Macbeth type portrayal. It was really interesting to read and an original way to characterise her; it fit in so well with different aspects that appeared here in the story and there definitely seemed to be reasons behind.

It was really interesting to see Narcissa in this role - I think she's always portrayed as someone who loves her family, especially her son, however cold and distant she seems in the books, but I think you've managed to portray that but equally portray someone who isn't necessarily cut out that well for motherhood. She obviously doesn't thrive on it the way that Molly does. Because of that, the fact she doesn't really feel comfortable around Draco and would rather be doing something else than looking after him, I can see why Draco would come and pester them - he's not exactly getting the affection that he needs and it would explain why he tries so hard to please his parents later on in life.

I really liked Narcissa's attitude towards Harry - you were so creative to think of all of the different things that he could represent to her, and the way that he had threatened her family and her lifestyle, and yet at the same time, by living, she kind of resented him a little, because he was seen as more special and important than her own son. You managed to fill her thoughts with so much and I'm still impressed by the detail that you manage to convey with these stories, even though they aren't particularly long.

I liked the idea of Dima, coming into the house as a foreigner and not really knowing that they shouldn't be talking about the war because of what happened during it. She really showed her ignorance there, and I could see the tension and awkwardness in the room because of her persistence in pursuing the topic. The parallels with the Dursleys when she asked what Harry's name was, and mistook it for Harry, worked really well too.

I loved this! I'm really enjoying this story collection and I look forward to your next update!

Sian :)

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Review #9, by nott theodore 1983

11th August 2015:
Hi again, Laura!

Oh my goodness, I don't know if you intended for this to be completely heart-breaking, but it was. I don't even know how you managed to write this - it was just so bleak and sad, and I just wanted to go and find Voldemort and Pettigrew and stop them from doing what they did, and somehow get Sirius out of prison and back into a normal life where his friends are all alive and everything is the way it should be - the way that they always thought it would be, even in spite of the war. It's just so heart-breaking!

You set the scene so well here. I've always known - even before I read any of your stories, thanks to all the lovely (and well-deserved) praise other people heap on you - that you have a real talent for imagery and description, but you really used it well here. The scene was just so bleak and cold, and wild - almost as if the world had been drained of colour and Sirius was lost in this gloomy canvas, but he was still there, still suffering in the darkness. Your word choice in the opening of this story - and throughout - was perfect.

I loved the way that you described the different ways that Sirius coped with the hell that was Azkaban; the fact that he could become Padfoot whenever he needed to, when things got too much (which for me would have been all of the time), and still retain some of himself that way, because it was simpler and easier as Padfoot. I think you really managed to convey how much of a release it was to him to become Padfoot and not need to think and remember all of the painful, terrible things that have happened to him. He was definitely lucky in a way that he had that to keep him sane, although of course, he shouldn't have been in Azkaban in the first place and that's even more heart-breaking!

The whole bleakness of the atmosphere in Azkaban - not just in its appearance - really pervaded the whole story. You did a wonderful job of conveying the fact that there's no joy to be had there, that the pleasure has been sucked from everything and the people left prisoner are shadows of the people they once were.

The part about how Sirius wanted to be able to think about Harry and what he'd be like now, and what his life and the Potters' lives would be like if they'd all been alive and everything had been okay, but he couldn't - that was so, so sad. It just really hit me that he wasn't even able to imagine happy things for Harry because he knew that they'd be taken from him, and that it all just got too much and he had to escape from being a human again. How awful must that be, to escape from being human because of the pain you feel? It was heart-breaking. Brilliantly written, but heart-breaking.

Sian :)

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Review #10, by nott theodore 1982

11th August 2015:
Hi again, Laura!

I couldn't not read on with this story collection - it's such an intriguing idea, telling the story on the anniversary of the Potters' death, but focusing on a different character each year to see the effect that those events had on them. I can't help but wonder now, reading this, whether or not Harry became aware, much later on, that Halloween was actually the anniversary of his parents' deaths - in the books, we see him celebrating, but I wonder if he became more conscious of it as he got older.

Anyway, this was a wonderful chapter! I loved the focus on Petunia, and I was really intrigued to see how you were going to use her character on the anniversary of her sister's death - there are so many directions that you could have taken this, but I really enjoyed the one that you chose.

Her characterisation was great, here. I liked the fact that she wasn't so far removed from the characters that we see in the books that I couldn't recognise her - she was still quite bitter, and hardened to Harry and to what had happened to her sister and brother-in-law, but at the same time she wasn't quite so horrible to Harry at this point as she is later on in the books.

I was so glad that Harry wasn't sleeping in the cupboard under the stairs! It's terrible that he had to at all, but to think that they might have put him there as a toddler is really sad to think about; it's only a small detail, I know, but it does show some compassion on their part.

Harry ♥ I don't know how you can write a little toddler so well and so touchingly, but you managed it here. My heart just went out to him and I really wanted to pick him up and give him a hug - there's no way that he should be able to remember that it was the anniversary of his parents' death but to see him crying to himself in his cot because he misses his parents so much was really sad. I was hoping that Petunia would relent a little, and at least comfort him a bit, so I'm glad that she did, in a way.

I think you did a fantastic job of capturing her feelings towards Harry - the fact that he was not only a memento of what had happened to her sister, but that he reminded her every day she saw him that her sister was gone and, because of what had happened between them, she didn't miss her the way she should have done. He made her feel guilty about that, and constantly reminded her of it - she almost makes up for not loving Harry by loving Dudley too much. I really liked that as an explanation for her behaviour towards him, too, even though it was really sad.

This was another great chapter, Laura!

Sian :)

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Review #11, by nott theodore 1981

11th August 2015:
Hi Laura! So, I've read quite a few of your stories from the collab, and that lovely one-shot from our swap, and I've heard so much about this that I've been meaning to read it for a long time. I could resist keeping that link open earlier today ;)

I really like the concept behind this short story collection - it's such a good idea, focusing on different characters during this one moment in time. I think I've seen the lead up to the events happening on that night before, with James and Lily, and a couple of stories which focus on Snape and Sirius and their reactions, but I don't think I've ever seen a story like this one which takes in a range of characters.

This was amazing! I honestly don't think I ever remember reading a story about Dumbledore at this time, so it was so interesting that you chose to focus on him first, and I've never really stopped to think and wonder what Albus would be thinking, feeling, doing when he's just left Harry, a tiny baby, on the Dursleys' doorstep because it's the best way he can protect him.

I think you did a fantastic job writing Albus here. He's one of the hardest characters to write, in my opinion, especially when he's older and wiser and more the character that we see in the books; at this point in time, especially, it was so interesting to seeing his reasoning behind taking Harry to stay with the Dursleys - even though it wasn't the easiest option, it was the best way that he could protect him. And at the same time, he had doubts over what he'd done and what the future would hold for Harry as a result of it; I don't think I've ever seen a story portraying Dumbledore so accurately before. I can't imagine that he wouldn't have doubted his decision and worried about what would have happened to Harry when he left him behind on the doorstep.

I also loved all of the detail that you managed to include in this story, in spite of it only being short. The heating charm that Albus used to make sure that Harry was still safe was such a good idea! I honestly haven't seen anybody who's come up with a solution like that, especially when there are so many protests about the morality of leaving a baby on the doorstep. It was a great explanation and filled in a little moment of canon that's never really been fully expanded on.

As always, your writing in this was beautiful - your description and imagery is so wonderful, but you always manage to strike exactly the right balance for the tone of the piece that you're writing. It's so enjoyable to get to read work of such high quality!

Sian :)

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Review #12, by 800 words of heaven 1984

24th July 2015:
Heya! I was super excited to see another chapter up - I'm sure it's been published for a while, but alas, it slipped my notice :(

This was an interesting take on Narcissa. I usually read stories where she's written in a more sympathetic light, her character softer and more empathetic than she is here. I know I read stories like that because it's a reflection of my own views of her. So this chapter was definitely out of my comfort zone.

I'm pleasantly surprised to say that I enjoyed this Lady Macbeth-esque take on her character! It suits her, and I think it makes a lot of sense that she's this way at this point in her life. The Malfoys' lives were basically ruined by the way the First War ended, and the lead-up to the second one is still a long way ahead in Narcissa's future. Her observations on womanhood were particularly resonant, and probably my favourite part of this chapter.

A lovely addition to this short story collection, as always. I've come to expect nothing but awesomeness from you! Thanks for the lovely read :)

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Review #13, by Shadowkat 1981

3rd July 2015:
Here for the BvB battle!

I could really see the scene. The contemplating look, the quietness of the early morning, the sadness weighing Dumbledore down as he sat at his desk. It much be so hard for him. James and Lily were both in the Order, so he'd be extremely close to them. Then when he thought Sirius betrayed them, another member of the Order and someone he himself picked and trusted, and also the promise he gave to Severus yet failed to keep, I doubt that sparkle returned for a long time. At least, not for anything other than show.

Everyone gives Dumbledore such a hard time, but it's true. Those making the biggest decisions are held much higher, and have a far greater burden. I feel so bad for him. After all, even Dumbledore was only human, and everything that happened that night must have really brought that home.

Great job, incase you can't tell, I loved it. :)

Author's Response: Hey Kat!

Wow, thanks for this brilliant review! I really need to write more for this story - I've reached a bit of a block on it :( You're absolutely right about Dumbledore though - everyone always does hold him as the highest authority so straight away there is so much pressure on him all the time.

Thank you again! I'm so pleased you loved this! :D xx


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Review #14, by Beeezie 1981

21st June 2015:
Hey, I'm here for BvB!

I loved this. Your imagery was so beautiful and made the scene seem vivid and alive - I could hear the silence and see the sunrise, and it was perfectly fitting for an evening like Albus had experienced.

And on that note - I felt like you did an amazing job of capturing how Albus might have been feeling on that night and what his experience might have been like. I really loved that he was distracted enough by logistical concerns and cold analysis that he wasn't actually mourning or celebrating yet - it's a coping mechanism that a lot of people dealing with grief and extreme stress in general fall back on, and it makes sense to me that Dumbledore would be one of them.

I mean, part of that is the significant responsibility and authority he holds in the wizarding world, particularly surrounding this issue (since it doesn't seem like anyone else quite knows what's going on with the Potters and why Harry needs to stay with his aunt and uncle), but I think that part of it is just who Dumbledore is. Some people aren't very good at feeling helpless, so they do everything they can at least trick themselves into believing that they aren't.

I also loved the consideration for the logistics of leaving Harry on a doorstep in early November. It always seemed to me to be a bit of a poor decision to leave an infant outside that long, however much you bundled him up, but if he put a lot of charms on Harry to prevent him from getting cold or, you know, kidnapped, that goes a lot way toward explaining his actions.

This really was so wonderful. Great chapter!

Branwen

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Review #15, by Tonks1247 1982

20th June 2015:
Heya! I have returned, coming from the BvB Review battle!

I have been anticipating having some time to pop over and read another chapter. Albus' chapter still floats through my mind, making me think and wonder what else this story could have in store. And this chapter? This chapter was no disappointment.

Petunia is such a difficult character, I feel. Maybe it's because I've never given much thought to writing her character or even to how her character feels or interprets things...but it really does baffle me how her and her sister were and how she really doesn't miss her, in any terms of the word miss. I mean, I knew thier relationship was rocky, but I couldn't even imagine not missing someone who was once so close...Although, it is obvious that it bothers her, with her not sleeping all night long, but just...I couldn't even imagine.

I'm torn on how to feel about her interaction with Harry as well. She doesn't know how to comfort him, doesn't know if she really wants to and just...her indicision is easy to feel and I can't help but feel sorry for Harry, and for her, just a little bit.

Overall, this was really lovely. I love the new thought process it put in my head and just...it was amazing. I loved it!

-Mikaela

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Review #16, by Tonks1247 1981

19th June 2015:
Heya! Here from the BvB review battle!

I was looking through your author's page, debating what to read and then I read the summary of this one and got stuck. I thought, why not take a look. And oh my gosh. Glad I did.

Obviously, Voldemort's downfall after he tried to kill Harry is a significant point in time. It changes everything, and sets up for everything we know of this wonderful world. But, that moment? It's not just a moment of new beginnings. It's a moment of ends, for some people, and a tragic moment at that. There's so much to explore in those hours after the downfall of the greatest dark wizard of all times and the death of a family, all except the little boy who has all but vanished. And for the exploration of those moments? I'm kind of exicted to see what else is in store!

This chapter, with Albus, is quite lovely. You describe his motions, his mannerisms, his way of being, perfectly. I could really see Albus sitting, just thinking and waiting. It was really powerful, and really told the story of how there was more than just hope. I really really enjoyed it.

The two quotes that really got to me here:

"But while life could perhaps now be lived without fear, Albus quietly considered at what price. The war had been so very cruel."

"But as he heard the unmistakable and desperate sounds of Severus Snape’s frantic footfalls on the stairwell outside his door, he was reminded that this was still a time of mourning."

Really lovely story, really lovely idea! Hopefully I'll find some time to stop by and read some more because I really like the idea you have going here. It's really great!

-Mikaela

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Review #17, by Aphoride 1983

19th June 2015:
Hey Laura! :) Dropping by for our review swap!

So I love coming to your page - only I hate it, too because I have the annoying problem of having to work out what to read, and there's so much of it which I want to read - everything just sounds so good and so interesting :) In the end, though, I wanted to come back to this too much - so here I am! :)

I love the way you've characterised Sirius in this - the way you've tackled his mind sort of breaking down and slowing down and the lack of memories, of almost human-ness (if that's a word :P) in him. It really feels like he's losing parts of himself, and it's equally devastating and terrifying. It really hits home how much Azkaban affects you, and how important it was to him that he could change into Padfoot and survive like that - but also it makes it so sad to imagine the damage extrapolated into thirteen years of this, rather than just three.

I really loved, too, how you used it to showcase the qualities we know Sirius has in canon, so well: the almost obsessive loyalty he has to his friends, and the persistence with his own innocence that he has to keep himself sane, the sort of recklessness (sort of coz Sirius thinks the guy opposite him thinks Padfoot is a hallucination or something) to change into Padfoot so often in Azkaban, where he could have been caught, and so on. It's just so brilliant, and so subtle - and he's so perfectly in canon.

The way you write Azkaban as a place is so chilling, too - with all the greys and the dark colours used it sounds cold in temperature, as well as so creepy, with the inmates crying and that little almost throw-away line about the guy opposite him thinking Padfoot was only in his imagination, too. The idea that a place - or creatures, with the Dementors - could effect you that much is so scary, and it's so well done in this to be so terrifying.

Gah, I always hated the idea of Azkaban, you know - hated and loved it, because as a creative idea it's genius - but the way you portray it in this and the effects of it just makes me hate it so much more, and makes me feel so desperately sad for the people imprisoned there, even the ones like Bellatrix :(

Your writing is amazing. You know this - or should know this - and I think I've said this before, but it's true so I'm going to say it again :P It's so clean and so beautiful, and it just pulls me in and doesn't let me go. All of the emotions come through so perfectly - all of the fear and the sadness and the desperation - and your characters are just amazing. Also, having read three of these by now - though each one is still obviously written by you, there's a noticeable difference, to me at least, in terms of the voice you use for each of them - the way you use words and the phrases you use. It's so gorgeous and so clever and I'm so jealous (teach me? :P) ;)

So yeah, as always, this is an amazing story collection, and this is a beautifully devastating one-shot within them, and you're just an amazing writer. And this is every reason why I should never miss an opportunity to stop by your page again :P

Aph xx

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Review #18, by Roisin 1984

11th June 2015:
I really loved this take on Narcissa! I realize now that a lot of characterizations of her are sort of apologist. Like, she's often portrayed as very doting and loving, with just a side order of prejudiced and stuck up. And I see why that's an appealing choice, considering how she basically saved Harry to save her family. BUT, someone can still be a sort of cold and reluctant mother and still want to save their family. It's the obvious choice, really, considering Voldemort's side didn't actually have much to offer her and she had little remaining reason for allegiance outside of fear.

I digress. Narcissa's relationship with her own feminine role is a really compelling one, and I respect that you never overstated it. The frustration was a subtle one, and not totally formed, which I think was in line with the character. And again, you REALLY managed to keep her consistent with canon while still adding nuance and depth to her character. But, critically, without redeeming her character, which I appreciate.

And I have to say a bit about Draco. He's terrible and ugh, but yeah, very obviously a product of his environment. Many writers sort of cling to his redeeming qualities, but I liked this approach--seeing little tiny uncorrupted Draco, and a glimpse into the sort of environment that made him the way he was. While his parents certainly spoiled him materially, I like the idea here that affection is slightly withheld. It supports his pathological desire to please his family and live up to things.

Anyway, this was fantastic!

xoxo
Roisin
House Cup 2015 - Gryffindor

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Review #19, by Roisin 1983

11th June 2015:
Oh man, this was alternately chilling and affecting. The language was really lovely and vivid, and you captured this perspective eerily well. Like, I really believe this interpretation of the Azkaban experience. Sirius' kind of fractured, manic, desperation is written in such a compelling and rather unflinching way, which I appreciate. And when he thinks about Harry, it doesn't come off as maudlin or forced or like an emotional manipulation of the reader--it's totally believable and OF COURSE.

Another thing I have to give you kudos on: I never really bothered to think about the fact that Sirius had been really young when he went to prison. Like, I knew it, objectively, but I never really considered the effect that would have. Major props for giving me many feels on that subject!

xoxo
Roisin
House Cup 2015 - Gryffindor

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Review #20, by Roisin 1982

11th June 2015:
Oh man, right in the feels!

I haven't read a baby-Harry Dursley POV story before but I've always really wanted to. I mean, obviously Petunia would have done a lot for Harry, as he was once a baby and all. And yeah, waking up in the night to go check on him. But the sort of neglect you show her doing here is really in line with canon. It isn't psychopathically abusive or anything, but it is problematic. But then, at the same time, you do a fantastic job of capturing her complex perspective, and the line of thinking that would have resulted in the kind of treatment she gave Harry. The fact that she goes and comforts Dudley after (even kind of maybe intentionally wakes him up so that she CAN) also fits really well. I mean, Dudley was spoiled rotten, but as Albus said, maybe that was worse in its own way. Here, Petunia is obviously comforting Dudley because SHE needs the comfort, and may have even (if subconsciously) disturbed him in the first place because she could.

ANYway, all sorts of complicated. All sorts of accurate, and full of depth. All sorts of feels.

xoxo
Roisin
House Cup 2015 - Gryffindor

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Review #21, by Roisin 1981

6th June 2015:
Tag!

Oh man, that ending. It's so totally believable that Dumbledore would come back to his office after and sit quietly being sad. He's always so sort of sweet and whimsical in canon, but you do see as the story progresses a kind of sadness there too. Dumbledore is very much the type to put on a happy face for others and then just sit alone in the dark. *sobs*

And it makes sense that Dumbledore would be mourning--not just for James and Lily but for Harry. I mean, at this point he's totally come up with his whole grand scheme and knows he'll eventually use Harry as a weapon :(

Oh Dumbledore... It's sort of sad when you think about it, but the war never ended for him--not even for a little while.

:(

xoxo
Roisin

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Review #22, by LadyL8 1982

5th June 2015:
Hi Laura.

I'm baacck! I told you I'd be back, didn't I? I haven't forgotten this story, you see, so it's been on my reading list for a little while right now. And I suddenly got some free time, so I decided it was about time I came back to it. And when I saw it was Petunia's chapter, I had to, because I find her to be a very fascinating character - she doesn't fully hate her sister or Harry, she's just been hurt by her sister because she left to a magic school and Petunia was left at home. And I've always kind of imagined the family was very proud of Lily, and that Petunia sort of feels overshadowed by her. So it was interesting to see how you viewed her :)

I like that Petunia is more affected by the death and by Harry than you'd initially think, but at the same time she's not a loving mother to him and she knows she will never be - she still feel bad for him, though, and I very much believe that. Like I said before, I see it as her having been hurt by Lily, and she can't really get over that betrayal - cause she probably views it like that - even when Lily is dead. It's sort of strange to say, but I feel like I can relate to Petunia. I have 3 sisters and 2 stepsiblings, so I do know a thing or two about living in the shadow of someone else. When you've got as many siblings as me, you've almost always remembered as 'her sister' or 'his sister', and that sucks. I think that's part of the reason i didn't want to study where the rest of my family is - I needed someting for myself. So I do feel like I can relate to Petunia on some levels - it jealousy more than it's hate for Lily, in my opinion.

So yeah, that was another good chapter. I like how your explore the different characters, and give us a slightly different view on them. You did that with the Dumbledore one, and now with this one. And it's so interesting, and I really look forward to seeing who you'll do next. I think I might do the next chapter late on today, because I'm getting hooked on this story now. Anyway, thank you for a lovely chapter. I absolutely enjoyed it. And I'm sure I'll see you very soon, Laura!

Hugs

Lotte

Author's Response: Hey Lotte!

Thank you so much for coming back to this story. I'm really glad that you liked it and that you did want to read more :) This chapter was really special to me because I don't think that Petunia is inherently a bad person and I really wanted to show that here. I think by your review that kind of came across, so yeah that just makes me so happy :D she is a character that is technically in the wrong - like you said, it comes down to jealousy - but that doesn't mean that she's bad or anything. She's just human after all.

Thank you for the really wonderful review, Lotte :) xxx


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Review #23, by Dojh167 1984

4th June 2015:
Hello!

It took me a while to get back to this, but I'm glad I did =) I read this earlier on my phone, so my review isn't as thorough (or nitpicky) as normal, so here are some general thoughts.

I absolutely loved the portrait metaphor you had here. It wasn't too heavy handed, but it was very clear and tied this chapter together really well, as well as giving us a good look into Narcissa's psychology.

I generally make the assumption that Narcissa was never as invested in the war due to her actions in DH, but I think it is definitely more interesting how you've written here here. You've given her lots of contrast and room to develop.

I loved your first sentence! At first I was going to complain about it being clunky, but it's ABOUT being clunky so it's pretty much perfect. I get excited about that sort of thing.

You had really good word choice in this piece. You used words that were unusual and may have thrown the reader off in another genre, but here they really helped add to the picturesque formality of your chapter.

I'm really looking forwards to your next chapters!

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Review #24, by Flower n Prongs 1982

1st June 2015:
I'm here for the BvB review battle. I was excited to see that you were the last one that posted so I could read the next chapter of this.

Petunia isn't touched much in fan fiction, even though we actually see her for a considerable amount of time in canon. Yet, even in the books, we are never able to really get inside of her head. But here you have managed to do that brilliantly.

I wondered if it was Halloween night and if that was keeping her awake. When she realized what day it was only after going to visit Harry, I had a sinking feeling. How did she not realize that it was the day her only sister and brother-in-law were murdered until then? The fact that toddler Harry knew something was different about that night but she didn't speaks wonders to her character.

Part of me hoped Petunia did feel something, but you crushed that in a heart-shattering way. By making her go visit Harry you made me hope that she would comfort him and be a good caretaker for once, but it was all a lie. Petunia leaving so quickly, not even looking back at her crying nephew while she purposefully tried to make enough noise to wake up her own son was hard to read about.

Then the last line was absolute perfection, in the most depressing sort of way that made me want to cry for Harry. "She felt sorry that that she knew she would never be able to love him like she loved her own son." How despicable that she could not - would not - bring herself to love her orphaned nephew in the way he needed to be loved, instead spoiling her son until he was absolutely rotten.

For a chapter that was not much more than 1000 words this was absolutely brilliant and very powerful.

- Rhaenyra

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Review #25, by alicia and anne 1981

27th May 2015:
Ooo I am quite excited about the idea of this story. It's going to be great to see this one day through the eyes of others, see how they coped and what they were up to.

Oh Albus, I wish that I could feel sorry for you (I do, just not as much as I should) But I have always had a problem with you leaving a baby on a doorstep! What if he had woken up in the middle of the night hungry? *shakes head* What if Petunia had never taken him in?

I do like that he thinks about whether he done a good enough job with the charms.

Ok, I do feel sorry for him. He seems so weary and so tired, it's clear that he's been fighting a battle for a while and it's taking it's toll on him.

You wrote Albus so well, you really got his character perfectly.

I can't wait to read more of this story, if it's anything like this perfect first chapter it's going to be amazing.

Keep up the fantastic writing!

:D You're perfect *squishes*

Author's Response: Heya!

Uwh, you are the kindest person ever *^.^* Thank you for this lovely review!

It's so strange because quite a few people have said that they find it hard to like Dumbledore in the books! He does seem pretty reckless in the guise of being wise and old a lot of the time. I'm glad that this nearly made you feel sorry for him - but at the same time, maybe he SHOULD be really doubting his actions at this point :P

Eep, thank you so much for this wonderful review, you are absolutely the sweetest! ♥

Laura xxx


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