Reading Reviews for All That Glitters
  
45 Reviews Found

Review #1, by HufflePuff_Blitz Beginning of the End

21st April 2014:
This is absolutely marvelous! I love the ominous feeling of this chapter, and the kind of spine tingling chill like something is happening right below the surface of the chapter, but it is more like when you know a person is looking at you but your not sure from where. maybe that's just me :p
Fantastic work though! I am exited to continue onwards with this story! - Kyle.

P.S. this is for the Hufflepuff review thingy but I would have reviewed this fantastic chapter anyways when I would have found it :)

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Review #2, by Aphoride Spinning Out

1st February 2014:
Hey there! I was so glad to see you re-request since I've really missed reading this story! One of the annoying things about being busy... missing out on things like this... :)

Anyway - first thought, best thought: wow. Just wow. This felt pretty short - I'm not sure if it was short or it was just me and the speed of the action in this - but I don't think it matters at all that much, because this seems to be a pretty important chapter, and I like how it's its own section, you know? I think it needs to be...

See, to me this seems to really be the point where things get dark for Eleanor, where it really hits her that it isn't some kind of game, that people are dying and people will die, and she might die, and that kind of stuff... almost a loss of innocence, if you will. It's always hardest when it's someone you know, and that's, I think, when it really hits you and it becomes real, if that makes sense. So yeah, I think because of that it kinda needed to be on it's own, because what else would you have put with it? And it's such an important moment for Eleanor...

Anyway, I'm rambling!

I love Eleanor as a character, really I do! I honestly don't read Sirius/OC fics, because I never ever like the OCs, pretty much no matter what, so the fact that I even like her is almost a miracle in itself :P But yeah, she's a fabulous character. She's sort of kinda the 'normal' person in the war, seeing what's going on and reacting. I love how she didn't want the boy to do and ran over when he fell to the ground even though she knew it was helpless... it's such a human reaction, and really brings her to life and makes her realistic. I really liked, as well, how she didn't want to be around Sirius at the end, even though he was trying to comfort her - I like that she's not latching onto him or anything, she sort of wants to mourn in private and just be on her own and think, or not think... it's really great characterisation! :)

I looked through this twice to see if there was anything I could comment constructively on for you, but there was honestly nothing at all. No grammar/spelling mistakes, no flow issues... everything's really good!

I really don't think you need to worry at all about things not making sense. To me, it makes perfect sense why Sirius would be a bit more distant with her - he's in the Order, she's not. He's an Auror, she's not. His family are nuts and want to kill him, and he doesn't want to make her a target ;)

I'm really excited to see where this goes from here, because it's such an interesting plot and I'm so curious to see how Eleanor deals with this, if she and Sirius get a little closer now that they've met up again, how their relationship goes (I'm not sure they'll necessarily make it work... I foresee arguments! :P), and, gah, just everything!

I hope I answered all of your areas of concern... I think I did! But yes, I really, really enjoy this story and really regret not having read it in a while!

Please, please re-request! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hey Aph!

Thank so much for your thoughtful review! I really appreciate the feedback!! *hug*

Yah, this is a turning point for Eleanor. Not so much where she decides she's going to go down fighting, but she's thrust into the war a little more strongly than what she was before. She can't be a passive observer of the after affects anymore. You hit it in on the head when you say it's a loss of innocence. I think it's different from when you think you know about the war, when you see people come into the hospital or you read about it in the paper and when you actually experience it first hand. That's not something Hogwarts students would have a lot of experience. Even the Marauders would have a moment when they realize how real it is.

I'm so pleased you like Eleanor!! Ahhh!!! This comment made me go over the moon. She's my first OC that i've ever seriously written about in ff and it's lovely to hear she seems real. She's fun to write and explore. The fact you like her is more than I could even hope for! I'm with you when you say you're unsure of Sirius/OC's. I am too. I usually get annoyed by the OC or they seem like replica's of each other. I also get annoyed at their Sirius' too. Timeturner is one of the few authors that writes a young Sirius that I believe in. I'm really pleased you feel Eleanor has some depth. I put a bit of thought in while writing her. I want her to be her own person, not someone who, as you say, clings on to the man. I'm pleased that shown through here. It has it's good and bad parts as although she's independent, she also shoves people out of her emotional life. Anyway, thank you for those lovely comments about her!

I don't think Sirius would be stupid enough to parade around someone he potentially would like, or parade around a friend who could be hurt. Although me may not understand other people's weaknesses and limitations, he won't put them in danger. Especially with his family and their connections. Also, there is a huge gap of their beliefs that are coming into play. Hogwarts, that didn't matter as much. I think more of those beliefs were assumed to be shared and now that they are in it, they both realize how difficult it is going to be. This gap is going to play later on in their friendship/relationship thing. You're right. It''ll be difficult whatever way it turns out. :)

Thank you so much for your lovely review!!!

Zayne


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Review #3, by Rumpelstiltskin Blue Room

26th September 2013:
This story is beautifully written and I am extremely invested in your characters!

I can't wait for more!

-Rumpel

Author's Response: Hey Rumple!

Thank you so much for your lovely review! I'm so pleased that you've enjoyed it so much. Writing the characters has really been my favourite bit about writing this whole entire pieces and it's lovely to hear that you really feel invested with them!

Cheers!

zayne


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Review #4, by onestop_hpfan18 Beginning of the End

25th June 2013:
Hi Zayne, here for the review exchange this month at TGS. I really like this first chapter. It adds just enough mystery to keep me curious to read on. It's clear that she's being initiated as a Death Eater, but we're not given much reason, which is good. Or at least that's how I interpreted this chapter. I hope I read it accurately.

I really want to read the Merchant of Venice since it's one of few of Shakespeare's plays that I haven't read yet. I'll have to read it and compare/contrast it with this story now. I like how you described the masks/disguises, especially since Shakespeare is big on disguising many of his characters. Anyway, great first chapter I'm looking forward to reading the other chapters (though I probably won't be able to until next week since I'm leaving for Portland tomorrow for LeakyCon). I just wanted to review the first chapter before I left. 9/10

Author's Response: Hi thank you so much for stopping by! You did interpret it correctly. I wanted to keep the reason out of it at the moment and explore that in the later chapters. This is just a quick prologue, a flash of her future before we are taken back to the present story.

It's a great play and I'd highly suggest reading it! The story however doesn't have much to do with the play itself other than taking on some of the meaning behind that quote and perhaps a few other connections because of that. Anyway, thank you very much for the review! I'm pleased you enjoyed the first chapter!


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Review #5, by BBWotter Suspect

12th June 2013:
Oh Dear Merlin! WHAT?!?!?! HOW CAN THEY FREAKING SUSPECT HER? STUPID PEOPLE! STUPID PEOPLE EVERY-FREAKING-WHERE!!! ASDFGHJKL!
Great chapter as always deary :) xx

Author's Response: I KNOW!!! What is WRONG with them???!!!

Thanks for your review hun! ♥


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Review #6, by Aphoride Moment of Relief

9th June 2013:
Hey there - sorry about the delay before stopping by! Anyway, I'm here, very happily, with your requested review! :)

I really enjoyed this! I liked that you chose to include a lighter chapter in it amongst all of the doom and gloom and tension. Yeah, they're at war, but that doesn't mean people can't joke, right? And so far, it hasn't totally effected them personally. I imagine if one of them did get attacked or hurt then they'd mellow, but for now, let them laugh! :D

Your characterisations were brilliant again. I love Eleanor - she's this combination of funny, weird and witty which I just love, and without going the 'kooky OC' route as well (I have no idea how you managed that, but well done!). Amelia is wonderful - it's so nice to see her when she's young because we know who she grows into, the stern lawyer-witch with the monocle, but nothing much else really. I love the boys too... they make me smile (and, on a random note, Bertram totally reminds me of a guy I know. Even down to the 'real girl' jokes. It's like you've written him into your fic. It's bizarre, but kinda cool) every time.

There were just a couple of things to point out. Firstly, if you read this through slowly again to yourself, there's a couple of points where you switch tenses (to past tense) or it just didn't flow right. One when you were talking about Bronson and his Quidditch skills (that phrase) and once right at the beginning when you used the mountain and jumping metaphor. It's nothing big, though - just that the whole of the rest of it flowed perfectly with no mistakes anywhere, so those kinda stuck out to me.

Also, the only other thing is that when Henry says he needs to go, it just feels a little random to me. You don't need to like introduce it or something, but I just feel that he needs to realise or something to make it seem less completely out of the blue. Again with this, everything else was great, so it was more obvious.

Master Londy... oh god, that cat is hilarious. He's just so adorable. I hope nothing's happened to him (and nothing will happen to him).

The pace is still a bit slow, but I think it works because it follows on from the last one, so it feels very continuous, which is nice, and then there's the cliffhanger at the end with Londy being missing, which helps - for me, at least - to bring back that tension from before. I don't think you need to speed this chapter up - particularly if it gets faster afterwards - because it would kinda spoil it. Plus, changes in pace help make things dramatic and suchlike, so it could actually work in your favour.

There is still tension here, but it's less palpable. Probably because it's lighter, though. You still managed to keep some of it in, just reminders with Eleanor's internal comments about the Death Eaters and wondering whether Sirius is okay and things. It's subtle, which is lovely - I think this is much better than just out and out saying it, you know?

So yeah, I'm still really enjoying this - please feel free to re-request any time! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hi! Sorry it took so long to respond!

Thank you so much for your insightful review! I'm really pleased you are still enjoying it and my characterizations. I find writing about the people a lot more interesting than anything else and it's really fantastic to hear they seem real. Especially Eleanor. I'm glad that she doesn't seem like a kooky person but still funny and witty and whatever else she is. There are only so many kooky people in this world and i don't think they all would be in Hogwarts. It's hard to find the balance though and I honestly don't know how i do it. I just sort of go and hope that she comes out alright.

I see what you mean with that line and being really abrupt, i'll have to go and make it less awkward when he leaves. I see him as a fairly awkward individual at times and puts things in odd ways but it disrupts the story so i'll have to take a look at it.

Thank you so much for your lovely review! I appreciate you coming and reading this! :)


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Review #7, by Aphoride Messages

2nd June 2013:
Hey there - stopping by from the forums with your requested review! Sorry it took a bit longer than expected, but I'm here now :)

So, I have to admit that I'm generally fairly sceptical of Sirius/OC stories, simply because they're generally set in Hogwarts or the OC is wonderful and brave and has a tragic family past, gets into the Order and is a brilliant duellist, etc. etc. but. But, this was brilliant!

I love how Eleanor is such an average character, you know? Yeah, she's a trainee Healer, but she's scared about the war, she doesn't really want to be involved, she has some kind of odd relationship with Sirius which you're not saying exactly what it is (which I love - it keeps us guessing ;D). She has such a strong, confident voice as well - honestly, if you're nervous about writing longer stories, you shouldn't be, because this is a really, really great start! :)

So yeah, your characterisation is great - all around, actually. Sirius and Amelia and your Hufflepuff OCs (who are just amazing!) are all so well thought out. I love that you included slight references to Sirius' family, without making it overly obvious. Amelia in particular is great - I like how you've linked it to canon with her working in Magical Law, and her opinions on Giant rights, and suchlike things. Her obsession with planning is funny, too - and I can relate to that, though I don't plan nearly as much as she does!

The plot is fantastic! I love how you started it at the end of the year, with the worry and excitement about leaving school and going out into the wide world and facing the war and actually being out in it, you know? It's such a great place to choose for it, particularly for this era, I think. Yeah, it's going a bit slowly at the moment, but because you keep referencing the war - mentioning that people have gone missing, shops are closing down, Bertram leaving, etc. - it keeps this underlying tension in it which kinda resolves the need for the plot to move faster. I mean, obviously, you don't want it to be this slow the whole time, but for now the pace is great - it's building up pressure and it works so well.

Also, on that note, it's so great how you're not mentioning the war all the time - it's not full on 'there's a war, there's a war, there's war - and oh, did I mention there's a war', but you're talking about it enough that we don't forget that it's happening. I like the mentions of how half-blood and mixed-blood families have started disappearing now, and Bertram and his family deciding to up and leave and him not being able to tell anyone, and Healer Davies making that point about hope and optimism.

And that bloke with Healer O'Kelly is very suspicious. Not sure if she's in on whatever's going on too (Healer O'Kelly, that is) but it's suspicious... I'm guessing he's a Death Eater? Someone she recognises from a few years above her at school? You didn't mention a name, so I'm assuming she doesn't exactly know him personally... still, it's making me curious :P

Your description is great; there's not really anything I can say about that, tbh. Your style in general is lovely - it really fits the voice of the OC, and keeps it lively, if not pacey. The detail is good, I liked the different robes for different years of Healer trainees, and how you haven't felt it necessary to describe every aspect of your OC :) So yeah, you don't need to be worried about that.

Just one note: you didn't ask about this, but in your summary, you've put 'For Eleanor Hughes, etc.'. I get what your trying to say with it, but it sounds a bit like 'she' would give up everything for 'Eleanor Hughes' so you might want to have another look at it. I know it's a pain coz you said you've had summary help - but it's the summary, so it's important, or I wouldn't have mentioned it!

This is really, really great, though - feel free to re-request any time! :)

Aph xx

Author's Response: Hey! No worries, it was 5 chapters and i knew it would take some time! Thank you for doing this!

I don't even know where to start with such a wonderful review such as this! I wish i could talk about everything you've pointed out but i'll just pick out a couple things to respond to.

First of all, I really enjoy Sirius/OC but it is rare that i actually like them written. I'm with the same opinion as you that so many of them are tragic past OC's, at Hogwarts and she tamed his playboy antics, or that she's just powerful and wonderful etc. It gets old and it's not how i really imagine Sirius. So, if he was to ever fall in love it would be quite different to that in my opinion. Which if something like that were to happen here i can safely say it's not going to around those lines at all.

I'm also really chuffed that you like Eleanor and - well all my characterizations of my characters. I'm really blown away by your compliments on them really. They've all become really close to me and i really enjoy writing them together and it's always good to hear that they seem realistic.

What I wanted to do with this story is explore life in a war. How sometimes it's just everyday stuff, sometimes it's full of fear, sometimes there is joy. But whatever it is, it is just life and just a bunch of people trying to survive and get through it. Which is going to make some of it a little slower, however, it won't stay there for very long. It's just coming to a boiling point really.

I'm happy that some parts of the story are a little mysterious! If there is one thing i'm rubbish with is leaving cliff hangers or trying to add mystery because i really like closure at the end of each chapter. It's hard to leave things hanging. Slicked back hair man is someone i'm dying to dive into but i keep telling myself to hold off explaining his relevance. However it's cool that you picked up on that :)

Finally on your comment on the summary - haha thank you so much for pointing that out! Summaries are always peskily important and I can definitely see now that it reads like that! I had summary help a while ago but this one is a new one i've cooked up recently so the bad grammar falls on me.

Thanks so much for your brilliant review!!


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Review #8, by oldnumberseven  Messages

24th March 2013:
"So yeah the messages that are unclear are definitely the worst."

so unbelievably true.

i love all the inner turmoil eleanor is feeling. i also love that you're showing her as a healer - in detail. i feel like most fics have their characters aspire to be healers but they never develop their position at all. st. mungo's must have been a real war zone during the 1970s and i feel like you totally capture the hope/despair debate. good work! :D

Author's Response: I know, sometimes i wish that messages and life was clear but it never is, is it? Sometimes that's good, sometimes it's good to have chaos and uncertainty in life. I think it helps sometimes to just be able to enjoy life in a weird way. Teaches you that you can't always be in control but that life will still work out.

I really love the idea of St Mungo's during the 70's. I think it would have been a mental place to be in and i think that it would have been hard to be training there because so much stuff was happening. I will be developing it more as the story goes on because there is so much potential behind those walls to show what the war might have been like.

Thank you so much for reviewing all my chapters here!!! I'm really appreciative and it made me grin so much to see you reviewing and liking the story! *hugs*


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Review #9, by oldnumberseven  Survival

24th March 2013:
"You be good Master Londy, only poo on Eleanors pillow once a week, you hear me?

kitty!

man, i want to look after master londy. he sounds like an entertaining cat haha. and i swear to god, animals help during traumatic experiences. they are fluffy and furry and just love you to pieces.

but anyways ... this chapter was sad. beautiful, but sad :( if i magically became eleanor, i'd be hysterical and shouting where is everyone going?

Author's Response: haha KITTY!!! I love cats so i think that might have been a selfish insert on my part to put him on there. :P Master Londy is a character though, stay tuned for more of him :P

Thank you so much for another review! I really appreciate you stopping by and reading my story!! *hugs*


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Review #10, by oldnumberseven  Half-Blood

24th March 2013:
"Life has a funny way of making you feel like youre cheese going over a cheese grader. Though once you come out, youre tasty chunks of cheese so maybe its worth it."

HA! i've actually had conversations about this topic before, although i've never compared it to cheese. so as you can tell, i really like your metaphor :D

i also like that you're starting your story at the end of eleanor's seventh year. there's so much potential and backstory that i don't know about and i can't wait to have both of them creep into the plot. muahahaha!

you description of the war is also very electric. i mean, i don't know what i would have felt if i was in eleanor's shoes but i expect i would be thinking some of the same things. they had no idea what was coming ... and that it was just the beginning. so tragic but so addicting!

Author's Response: Im really happy that you enjoyed this chapter!! Haha, yah, i'm happy that you were able to connect with some of the stuff from this chapter! Not that life has made you feel like a cheese grader, however as a writer i'm glad i was able to capture that enough that people could relate to.

haha i'm really happy that you excited for the rest of the story to unfold! thank you so much for your lovely review and i'm glad you could really relate to Eleanor and what she's going through at the moment!


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Review #11, by oldnumberseven  Leaving Hogwarts

24th March 2013:
"Plus, that would circumvent my dedication and love to pumpkin pastries and we cant have that."

i LOLed at that!

wonderful writing so far. i'm totally hooked. onto the next chapter!

Author's Response: Hey Thank you so much! I'm so pleased you enjoyed this chapter! Thanks for reading!!

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Review #12, by oldnumberseven  Beginning of the End

24th March 2013:
your description in this chapter is beautiful. i always like the first person point of view because i feel you can just convey more - if that makes any sense. i'm currently writing something with nine points of view and it's hard to put that much description into my writing because there is just so much going on.

but that's besides the point. this was a wonderful beginning and i can't wait to see what happens next!

Author's Response: Thank you so much for your review! I'm really pleased that you enjoy the first person feel of this story and that it helps you connect to the story. That's the whole point, i want this story to be felt.

I can imagine that would be hard to write and i wouldn't even know where to start with that many perspectives. It's brave of you to do it and i wish you much luck :P

I'm really pleased you enjoyed the beginning of this story, even if it's quite dark!


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Review #13, by Jchrissy Messages

24th March 2013:
First of all, I'm so happy you liked my suggestions! Although I didn't do much other than tweak your already awesome ideas!

I love the way you slow this chapter down and really turn it into an introspective one. I love those kinds in general, but you had such an awesome combination of Eleanor doing things but stuck in her own head. I think everyone can identify with not being able to focus on what we need to be because something big going on in life. Can we understand feeling like one of your friends may be dead? Probably not, but Eleanor really can't either. And I love that. She's trying so hard to ignore it, but she can't. She never thought she'd have to deal with something like this and I just love it.

You really played into her trying to go about her work day (more on that in a second) and not being able to. I think a lot of authors have trouble with first person because they either spend too much time inside the character, or too much trying to show us the world outside the character, but you found a perfect mixture.

Now back to Eleanor's work day. So many people have something like this (training to be this or that) then never include it! The character is never actually doing it! But you completely showed us that training to be a Healer IS part of Eleanor's life, and a large one. We got to see the kinds of things she does (or is supposed to do when she's able to focus).

Then getting to see the state the rest of the wizarding world is in... it's so sad :(.

But we got cheered up by Amelia! Her and Eleanor make such a good combination. You've really given the two of them different personalities - another thing I love. But you've left me hanging over here wondering if Bertram is okay! You're going to need to speed up on that next chapter, missy ;)

Sorry I don't have time for a longer review. I have family visiting but wanted to stop by and tell you how much I adored this chapter. You're making Eleanor so realistic, I just want to hug her.

Can't wait for the next ♥

Author's Response: Hey dear! Sorry it's taken me forever to respond! I've gotten so far behind on my responses that i think it chased me away from doing any!

I loved your suggestions! They really helped smooth the chapter out and make it seem a little more coherent!

Gah! Your review is so nice! I love first person a lot simply because you can get really close to the character and get a chance to see the world from another person's perspective. I'm really pleased that there is a mixture of action and mind stuff though because i always feel I her too much in the mind which can get boring.

Yah, i've noticed that too and i find it interesting to see their day to day life. Which includes more mundane things like work and isn't exciting like going on a dragon ride or spending time being witty in a pub with mates. Or whatever. I think i'm attracted to stories that are day to day life stuff. I think some find it boring but i think it makes me feel really close to the characters in way.

I love writing Amelia. I don't know why but she's a joy to put into the story and i don't really have any firm ideas of who she is but i find that she's one of the easiest to write as she just comes and does her thing on the page. I'm glad that she compliments Eleanor and they work well because she's such a floaty character in my head i fear that she doesn't come across well on the page.

Thanks so much Jami for your lovely review! I'm working on the 6th chapter but i got distracted on starting another WIP (bad idea zayne, i know!!) but it's my next project and i'm about halfway done!! :P


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Review #14, by Courtney Dark Half-Blood

27th February 2013:
Ooooh, this was a great chapter! And it actually made me really sad, though I don't really know why. I think it was partly because of all the farewells and end of an era and all that stuff...that and the fact that the dynamics between Eleanor and her friends on the train totally reminded me of me and my friends!

There are so many little bits and pieces of this chapter that I really enjoyed, that I'm going to struggle to name just a few. I think it's the little details that you include that I love most of all. Like Eleanor's failed attempt at a memory charm, Remus looking sad (intriguing, by the way-I want to know more!) and his rabbit supposedly eating his grandma (that line made me giggle-I already love Henry and Bertram!) I also liked Davey Grugeon and that mention of him and the Whomping Willow in his fifth year. That was a very nice touch-my mind instantly went to the books

I loved the little Quidditch talk about 'dating the enemy' that the boys had, because that's just so Hogwarts and their dynamics as a group were great. As I said before, I had this huge sense of sadness that they were all finished Hogwarts and beginning their adult lives...it's certainly a scary thought, but I'm glad Amelia and Eleanor are going to be sticking together.

Sirius and Eleanor's conversation was great, and now I'm wondering what Eleanor is going to decide...and how the events in the very first chapter are going to come about. Hmm, so many questions! I can't wait to find out the answers.

Courtney:)

Author's Response: Gah! Thank you Courtney! I'm really pleased you could connect to the farewells, the goodbye's and that it seemed like the dynamics between them are real. Friendships in FF can be overlooked sometimes with all the romance's that are splashed about (and there is nothing wrong with those because i like them too) however, it is a huge boost to hear that the dynamics in that moment seemed realistic. Like they were meant to be friends!

Bertram is one of my favourite characters here to be honest, he took me by surprise though when i wrote him because i hadn't really given him much thought. Just started writing him and it turned into what he is. He's a fun guy to write because he's quick and witty but incredibly loyal to them.

That moment when people leave school is always a little scary because suddenly you need to make decisions for yourself. You feel like you need to know everything and yet they are all very young and how can they be expected to know all that?

Thank you so much for your review! I appreciate it so much!


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Review #15, by Courtney Dark Leaving Hogwarts

23rd February 2013:
Hello again! Thanks so much for re-requesting-I'm really enjoying this story so far.

I loved the underlying mood and tone of darkness and mystery in this chapter. Though it was quite light (the first half, at least) and Eleanor's thoughts were, at times, quite humorous and very seventeen year old girl-ish, I couldn't shake the feeling that something bad was coming. The fact that the war is at the back of everyone's minds at all times made this chapter much more believable and very realistic-a lot of people, when writing Marauders stories, often forget that the first wizarding war is looming-you clearly haven't, which is great.

I love how well defined each of your characters are. Their personalities are shining through and they are all unique and different from one another. I like how Eleanor is feeling quite uncertain about leaving school, as moving on into the adult world can be a very daunting thing-and I think you chose to 'start' this story and a very good place. I'm looking forward to seeing how it escalates.

Eleanor and Sirius' little moment together was perfect-very sweet and showed how protective Sirius can be, and revealed that the two obviously have feelings for each other of some sort. It also told me that Eleanor is-or could be-in danger, and that she needs to be more careful. I'm also loving the contrast Amelia brings to the chapters-she's very lively and upbeat, which makes a nice sort of change from the others. And I liked the way Eleanor described Lily as 'intense.'

Loved this chapter, can't wait to see what happens next.

Courtney:)

Author's Response: I felt like a lighter chapter was needed, and i wanted to show that there is a time difference between the first and this chapter. In this one, although they are plagued by the war, they are still children and there still is that hope they hang on to. I also think that Hogwarts during that time (especially their seventh year but i think the war started getting serious for them in their 5th or so year) was dangerous and i think people would have been more politically involved. If you think of what the 70's was like as well, it seemed like everyone then always had a say and wanted to be heard. There seemed to be more of a culture of it and especially in a community that is as small as wizards it would mean that everyone would be affected in some way. Yes, some to a lesser extent but everyone probably knew someone who died, was tortured or something. That was one of the main reasons why i chose to write this story, was to explore the war and its effects it could have. It makes writing a bit difficult because it's exploring a lot of moments and a lot about life but there isn't something that is pulling it together like they have to go and find a killer or they're finding some object.

With that i've been trying to find a balance with it being light hearted and having the war hanging over them through this story which i find it hard because i'm more used to writing angst and more of my chapters seem to have more of that in it. But i'm glad you could see some of their light moments. :P

Thank you so much for this review and your comments! I appreciate you stopping by and reviewing this!


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Review #16, by teh tarik Leaving Hogwarts

22nd February 2013:
Hello again :D I'm back to review your second chapter!

Oh, I think your story and your characters are coming on really nicely! I love that foreboding atmosphere of war hanging over everyone's heads; it's really such a grim image despite Eleanor's light-hearted moments of internal monologue, that this bunch of children, new school-leavers, have to contemplate something so vast and destructive as war. All the students are surprisingly very politically involved; all of them have a very bleak maturity to them - loved the way you described the Marauders' faces as pinched and hard. Sigh. War really makes one grow up fast. I think you've got a nice theme running through your story - loss of innocence, and so far you're really conveying it well in these first two chapters.

Ah, I'm loving your Sirius a lot :) His characterisation is so precise and really canon - the way he's so volatile and how uncontrolled he is in his anger, how protective he is of Eleanor and his friends - he's a wonderfully complex character. Eleanor on the other hand is brave and she does have her moments of recklessness too, I guess - e.g. when she attacked Wilkes without a wand. She's also dryly observant at times, and contemplative. I love that moment between her and Sirius by the lake. It's a very lovely well-written moment that they share together. There's a sense of tranquility to that time, and yet, set against the backdrop of a war, and a wizarding world in chaos and political turmoil, the impermanence of this rare moment of calm is really accentuated.

Anyway, I think you've got quite a wonderful story here. Your characters are very well-realised and detailed and realistic, and Eleanor's narration is lucid, observant and humorous at times, which punctuates the prevailing bleak mood of the story quite nicely. I've really enjoyed this chapter :D And I'll definitely be coming back to R&R the next chapter :) Great work!

-teh

Author's Response: Hey dear!

Thank you so much for reviewing this and giving me your thoughts! I've always imagined Hogwarts to be bleak then and that everyone had to be involved in some way with the war. It wasn't just school anymore but they were each faced with the demons. The thing with the first war is that it seemed more chaotic than the second where Voldemort was so singularly focussed on killing Harry. That's definitely something I wanted to get across.

I'm also really pleased you like Sirius so far. I've always been wary of writing him because i dislike a lot of versions of him and writing him how i imagine him in my mind hasn't been easy. He is, as you say, complex. Inconsistent at times, unpredictable and that's how it's felt writing him.

Eleanor has been fun to write on the other hand. She is reckless, but she's scared too. More scared than any of them and the only thing that would push her into doing something reckless is when someone messes with the people she loves.

Thanks so much for the review!! It was absolutely lovely!


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Review #17, by teh tarik Beginning of the End

20th February 2013:
Hello :) I'm here for the TGS review exchange!

This is the first fic I've read in which a female character is being initiated into the Death Eater circle - and gosh, this is intense. You've really gone into some detail to create a very dark, horrifying sort of atmosphere, and I really felt your character's fear, disgust, contempt for the whole ritual, for the other masked Death Eaters gathered there. This really makes me curious as to how she arrived at the decision to be initiated into Voldemort's inner circle. She sounds like such a normal person - young, with a happy past etc. I can't wait to find out more about your character!

Loved the way you began this story in the thick of the action. The story really absorbs you from the start, from the first few sentences. There's so much tension and suspense and it just thickens as the chapter progresses.

I really loved how you portrayed the shift in your character's thoughts - there's something lighter in the earlier paragraphs as she recounts some of her memories, some of which are a little humorous e.g. the pumpkin pastries. There's also the bit about vomiting on "them" and the best angle at which she should tilt her head in order to maximise chances of hitting someone with her vomit...these are little light-hearted moments, and they feel really bizarre in such a dark bleak situation - but it's this bizarreness and strangeness that I really like, and that really shows me a bit about your character. Also, the tone shifts quite quickly and the humour drops away as the reality of the situation hits her. I know you were trying to incorporate humour into this chapter, and I think it sort of works because the humour is controlled and not too over-the-top, and instead really strengthens your characterisation.

I really enjoyed the last couple of paragraphs. Gah, they were so disturbing and you've portrayed Eleanor's state of mind so convincingly. This is so tragic...it must have been a tremendous loss of innocence for her, especially if this is the first time she's done something so horrific. This sentence really struck me: I opened my mouth again and heard it utter those two deadly words with my thoughts focusing only on why I was here. You've done a great job showing the disconnect between her thoughts and her actions, or maybe Eleanor is deliberately trying to disassociate herself from her actions...whatever it is, it's very well-written and there was just so much emotional impact there. I think you've definitely written her shock and trauma very well - to kill someone would be like splitting your soul, which must be what poor Eleanor is going through...

OK, I hope you don't mind if I offer a little critique...if it bothers you please let me know.

I think you need to be a little careful with your tenses. The narration is mostly in the past tense, but there are moments when you somehow start using the present tense, e.g. He looks like he fancies a little present. God, I feel sick. So sick. What am I doing? I honestly think I've gone off kilt, finally gone around the bend.

OK, one final thing, and this is very minor and not important at all...but near the beginning where your character starts thinking about the past and has some flashbacks - these memories were sort of marked by certain sentences such as I breathed in deeply and tried to force my memories away. as well as the following sentence, used to signal an end to the flashback and return to the present: My stomach lurched, bringing me back to the present. I think such sentences aren't really necessary; it would be a lot smoother if you took them out and embedded the flashbacks more naturally into Eleanor's narration :) But this is a very very minor thing and you need not take me up on this :)

Anyway, I've really enjoyed your story! Such a fantastic and utterly gripping opening chapter...I'm definitely going to come back and read more :D Great work!

-teh

Author's Response: HeyTeh!

Sorry for the late response! I've been having massive issues in responding to reviews recently! So i'm sorry but i appreciate you comments!

First of all i don't mind critique, i really appreciate it and i know i have issues with tenses. Thank you so much for pointing that out to me! I shall go and fix that up as soon as i can!! :P Also with the pushing memories away and such - i think i've gotten in a little bit of a habit with that, especially with this story because Eleanor does tend to be stuck in her memories a lot and i haven't wanted to confuse anyone as i've had some who commented on some things being less clear. However, i think i will try and tone it down for sure and trust that the reader can figure it out.

Thank you so much for the rest of your review and seeing the tension in it. And humour. I added those bits in because there is so much angst in some stories and in moments like these that sometimes it makes it seem overdone. I understand that this is a big moment but people disassociate themselves from trauma in different ways. Eleanor uses humour and sarcasm to try and distance herself from it. I'm really happy that you thought it worked and didn't hinder the story!

I think you've really got this chapter and Eleanor trying to distance herself from the event and trying to see that it isn't her who's doing this. I really love the quote you pulled out with that comment and it's the biggest show of her loss of innocence. Things won't be the same for her after this. She can't live thinking she's a good person because she's just done something that is so dark and unforgivable. She's split her soul. I really liked how you used that to describe that moment and i think it hits perfectly with what she's going through.

Anyway, thanks so much for your review! I really appreciate it!
-zayne


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Review #18, by Courtney Dark Beginning of the End

13th February 2013:
Hey there! I'm Courtney, here for your requested review.

I never used to read a lot of dark fanfictions but lately I've been getting into them and this is certainly one of the best first chapters I've read for a while. It is very hooking and gripping and the language is absolutely spectacular. I especially like how you delve straight into the storyline, because it really gave me a sense of what this story is going to be about.

I loved Eleanor's thoughts in this chapter. They all seemed so raw and so real, and gave me a good sense of the type of person she is in a more unconventional way-without actually listing or describing the qualities of that character, which is an easy trap to fall into. I liked how she kept reflecting on her childhood, and days at Hogwarts. Not only did this give me a sense of the time this story is set in, but it also showed me how drastically things have changed for Eleanor, and made me curious to find out why.

The mood and tone of this chapter was excellent. There were so many little bits and pieces here and there that really sent shivers up my spine and told me this was going to be an excellent story, full of darkness and mystery. I think you've put you main character into a very unique and unpleasant situation, and I can't wait to find out why, and how she deals with this situation.

Eleanor seems like a good person to me, which makes me wonder what could possibly pull her to kill a man? What are her motives? Is she some sort of spy? Is that would enabled her to actually use Avada Kedavra?

As you can see, I have a ton of questions, which is great! It makes me even more curious to read the next chapter.

So far I'm really enjoying this story, and I definitely hope to read more.
Courtney:)

Author's Response: Hi! Thank you so much for stopping by and giving such a lovely review! I'm so pleased you enjoyed the first chapter! That's always one of the hardest bits, trying to chose the best place to start. I've played with a lot of different beginnings with this story and leaving this bit of the story a mystery however i've obviously chosen this way where the end, or the near end of the story be known before the beginning bit. I like the idea that questions will come when you see someone who seems good, who seems like they'd be anywhere but there being initiated because in the war i think it did happen. I think there were moments were lines between good and wrong were mixed and that it wasn't easy to be a dreamer and a member of the Order- there was so much else going on that i think someone could be made to turn this direction. Which is one of the things i wanted to explore here and answer exactly why she's here. She could be anything at this point, a spy, blackmailed, scared, someone who's just lost hope in everything. I like the idea that at the moment there isn't anything that directly says what she is or who she was other than the hints that you picked up on reading through.

I'm really happy that you enjoyed this chapter! Thank you so much for your wonderful review!


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Review #19, by Jchrissy Survival

10th January 2013:
So, I read this chapter title and did the 'what??' thing in my head. And started wondering if I was going crazy because I didn't remember anything that had to do with a paper cut.. haha. You sneaky girl. Before I review review, I have to say that I love the final set up of this.

Not only do I love the very intense feelings finding the letter gives Eleanor, but I really like where you put that in. It's a really perfect way to break up the chapter, and her wanting to escape the scene when the discussion was turning to heavier things and get the catnip was so perfect for this awesome character you've created. Little did she know that she'd escape the talk of death and war, only to throw herself into a different kind of turmoil. Poor girl :(

Your line about her not thinking it's so bad that she didn't want to give all her soul to the cause, that was her refusal (or not acceptance, I guess) really bad enough to get her exiled? Although, this is coming from Eleanore, so I'm sure she hasn't sent flares out trying to contact Sirius either.Anyway, you built up a lot of Sirius's character without even having him there. We know what the Order means to him, how important fighting against Voldemort is, and you drove that home with this little section.

I can never get over how much I enjoy Eleanor's sarcastic personality.I think she'd be an awesome friend to have, haha. Really, though. She's very, very easy to relate to.

Ahhh the ending isn't any easier to read the second time :(. It's hard, because I feel so sad that so much in Eleanor's life is changing, but at the same time you can't blame him for leaving with his family. I think you do a really excellent job making sure we understand how hard things really were during this war, how quickly people were disappearing and how severely friends were separated ;(.

Awww thank you for your sweet mention in the AN ♥ I'm so happy I'm able to help, even if it's just a small amount ♥ Now! I hope you are typing speedily away at chapter 5, because I am quite curious as to what comes next... *ninja face*

Author's Response: Hahaha, yes, i'm glad that little scene fit in well with the rest of the story. I always feel a little bit iffy with inserting scenes into a chapter after it's been written because it always sounds awkward. However, I think that is what the chapter needed to make it a tiny bit better anyway :P Thanks for the suggestion! Seriously!

Ah, her exile, well, we will learn more about it in a few chapters from now, not the next one i don't think but probably the one after that. I think Sirius wouldn't have necessarily written her off no, but for a time he would have been irritated at it all. Anyway, that's all i'm going to say.

I like how you can read her as a character and know that she probably hasn't done anything either. It is true, she's not that kind of person (Lord forbid that she admits that she likes the guy and has emotions, gah!) and she may also be a bit dramatic about the whole thing as well. So take it with a bit of salt because all this is from her biased perception of the situation.

Anyway, i'm really happy you still like her sarcastic ways. When i was challenged to write humour as a genre (obviously it's only a very small part of the story) i was wary because i don't write humour well. However, as Gilbert Blythe told Anne Shirley once 'write what you know' so i made her sarcastic and dry. It's the humour i know and can write with some degree of success. (shocking i know)

ANYWAY GAHH! Thank you so much for stopping by and reviewing, it's was so lovely and THANK YOU so much for betaing this. You are incredible! *fails about* Chapter 5... well i know the outline and i've opened up a document, however there is a few other projects i'm telling myself to work on so... >=D you may have to wait in your suspense ^_^


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Review #20, by MargaretLane Half-Blood

7th January 2013:
The part about Sirius's face having the audacity to float into her mind amused me for some reason, as does the detail about the other guy possibly being a toad in a former life.

Like that image about opposition to Voldemort being etched in Sirius's being like a map.

Hmm, I wonder why Remus looks so sad. Because his options will be limited when he leaves Hogwarts? Or something to do with the war?

And that comment about his rabbit attacking his grandmother was funny.

When Amelia is responding to Bertram's question as to what bird caught his eye this time, you've spelled her name as Ameliea.

*laughs at how the cards keep exploding on her*

The phrase "I laid ownership to him" sounds a bit awkward somehow. Something like "I claimed ownership of him" or even just "didn't mean he belonged to me" might sound better.

I think the paragraph where the main character is trying not to let anybody see how much the news about Samantha's family disappearing affects her really captures the atmosphere of the situation. Really shows how nervous people are and how they are trying to create some sort of normality in a situation that is anything but.

When she is talking about the Order having her back, she says "would they have my families too?" It should be "family's". The way you've written it makes it sound as if they have numerous families belonging to her.

Love the comment about the war being over by the summer. It reminds me of how World War I was supposed to be "over by Christmas". I guess people have to believe that it'll end soon or they could't go on.

And I like the way you raise the moral dilemma about whether or not ANYTHING justifies killing people and whether ANYTHING justifies war. All sides do evil in war, but then doing nothing means standing back and allowing evil to continue. There is no good option. I rarely see those issues explored, so it's really good to see it here.

While Binns is useless and doesn't seem to understand history himself (how can a HISTORY teacher dismiss myth? Before a certain point, myths are important historical sources), I totally disagree with her idea that history is not important. If you don't know how things have worked out in the past, then you are basically just sticking pins in lists to guess how they'll work out in the future. How can you know what political philosophies or other ideologies you agree with, if you don't know what has been tried in the past and what worked and what didn't? And I think there is a deeper side to it too; that we need to know that the world we live in is not the only way things can be or the best way things can be. We need to know that things have been different in the past in order to understand that they can be different in the future. And understanding that people in the past thought things were obviously true that were later proved not to be tells us that some of what we think obviously true probably isn't and therefore, we shouldn't be complacent.

Just floating off and ignoring her sounds pretty characteristic of Binns.

I really like the way you portray her despair as she steps out onto the platform. Very moving.

I think it's good it doesn't seem black and white to her. When you start looking at things as being black and white is when you start turning into Crouch. "We're the good guys; they're the bad guys. So whatever we do to them is justified." When you can see both sides of an issue, you're more likely to make good choices.

This sentence sounds kind of awkward for dialogue: "Even if I was duly impressed when he was able to scream loud enough when he tried to quiet the whole Great Hall for his studying purposes." People don't usually speak that formally. Something like "Even if I was impressed he could scream loudly enough to try and quiet the whole Great Hall so he could study" might sound better.

I like the way she does so much reminiscing. It makes sense, considering a period of her life is coming to an end.

When they disembark from the train, you mention "the home their going to" when it should be "the home they're going to."

I really doubt the Order would fail to protect somebody they were able to protect just because they didn't have a family member in the Order, but it makes sense that Sirius would think joining the Order will solve everything; it's the sort of way he'd look at things.

He's pressuring her to risk her life just as he'll later pressurise Harry and his friends to risk expulsion and just as he expected Peter to risk his life to defy Voldemort.

When she says "you guys are the picture of innocence", there should be a full stop before she rolls her eyes.

I think one of the most impressive parts of your writing is your use of imagery and metaphor. You also seem to be able to create atmosphere very well.

Author's Response: Hi,

Thank you so much for your comments here! I've found them all really helpful and made me look at my story closer as well!

yes, you got that right with why Remus wasn't feeling excited about leaving because Hogwarts has really only been his safe haven and now that is taken away from him. He's just in a self loathing, self pitying mode at the moment.

That's one of the reasons why i really enjoy writing this story is to explore some of the grayer issues of war. I read so many stories where it seems like the characters know which side they want to be on and rarely look to see what it might be like for the other side as well. It's interesting to try and delve into some of those moral questions and what might it be like to have those pressures and fears surround you.

I agree with you about how history is so important and how it can be like a guiding light to us in times that are hard and difficult. It shows us that things could be different and shows how bad the world can get if we let it. I think that is something that Eleanor has wrong and may learn later on as she grows through this story.

I'm glad you thought it was typical of Sirius to think that the Order would fix all the problems. I think he will learn differently later but now he's full of passion and need to change the world and being different from his family. The Order is where he's put his hope in. I doubt that too, the Order would protect anyone i think that needs it for sure. What i meant by that comment was along the lines of he thought it would mean safety for those in it. It's a limited view of what The Order is about and at the moment he thinks himself and his friends invincible. This will change I think as they get more deeply involved but now it's just a childish idea that through this they will be victorious.

Thank you so much for your comments throughout this chapter and sorry it took me so long to respond!!

-zayne


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Review #21, by MargaretLane Leaving Hogwarts

5th January 2013:
Really like the little insight into the character's normal life we get in the first paragraph. Also LOVE the third paragraph and how it really emphasises how the war has changed their lives. Really well and emotively written.

I think the sentence about her "love to pumpkin pastries" would sound better as "love OF pumpkin pastries."

Oh, gosh, people like Amelia are annoying. If they are dedicated to finding a man and marrying, that's fine, but they shouldn't assume everybody feels the same way, particularly not when they're still at school. People want different things from life; this shouldn't be a difficult concept!

You give good insight into her character just in those few lines.

Unless I'm missing something, the character should be a halfBLOOD, not a halfBREED as you've had her mention being called. Halfbreed means that she is something else as well as human, like part-giant or part-goblin or something.

Do Hogwarts students have electives for N.E.W.T.? I thought they just picked any 3+ subjects at that stage, much like the British A-levels, so in a sense EVERY subject would be an elective at that level. I don't think they have any compulsory subjects for N.E.W.T.s.

When she talks about getting back at James, you haven't given the word "i'll" a capital letter.

Yikes, Wilkes is kind of getting creepy here. And of course, in this case, the teachers can do less than usual as the students are about to leave school and what can they do at this stage? Expel them? If they've their exams done, then why would they care?

I think you're really kind of capturing the uncertainty of leaving school in this chapter, with your character being glad to get away from some of her schoolmates, but worrying about whether or not she'll get the career she wants and what'll happen next.

Oh, Amelia Bones. I would have imagined her as a good deal older than this, both because she was so high ranking in the books and because her niece was at Hogwarts with Harry. And probably because of things like being called "Madame Bones" too, which makes her sound older than in her 30s. But of course, there is no evidence as to WHAT age she is and you can be an aunt at any age. So I shouldn't be surprised by this.

I love that line about how they are being forced to act as adults when they are really just children. It shows the effect of the war on them and also fits really well with canon, where James and Lily had married, had a child, fought in a war and died, all by an age where many people are still looking forward to their first full-time job.

I also like the fact that Peter has had a girlfriend.

Ah, so I was wrong about the teachers lacking power against Wilkes, since he's apparently only in 6th year and not leaving yet.

And I really like the fact that your main character is trying to avoid facing the war. It sometimes seems like in canon, everybody is the kind of person who goes out to fight for what they believe in and really, those kind of people are far from the only ones in society. Apart from Slughorn, we rarely see characters who just want to get on with their lives without risking their lives. So it's good to see it in fanfiction.

*laughs* I think only Sirius would suggest that the Order of the Phoenix wouldn't be that dangerous.

Love the last paragraph and the hope that sometimes things will be normal again. I can't imagine what living through a war must be like. I don't know how people do it.

Author's Response: Hey I'm really sorry that it took me forever to respond to this!

I understand you dislike of Amelia to an extent, although i really like Amelia I think i could only handle her in small doses in real life. Mostly because as you mentioned her single mindedness and her desire for a perfect marriage. Things will change for her as the time goes by but at this moment she's quite naive about life.

It should be halfblood technically, but i suppose i was using halfbreed to show how low they thought of Eleanor. I don't know if this works but i've gone in and edited to make it clear that she is halfblood but they use that because they don't see Eleanor as being fully human because of her blood. That comes not just because she's half blood but also because of her squib brother and blood traitor mum. I suppose i've always seen that being a squib or having one in the family could be volatile during those times because if a family's magical bloodline is tainted or not strong enough to pass down to the children then can that family be seen as human? Their blood means everything, to a purebood anyway, and I think squibs could be extremely shaming and mark someone being connected to them as less than human. It's a ridiculous concept but that's how i see it from a pureblood's perspective. Does that make sense?

You have brought up so many good comments that i wish i could comment on them all but i'm afraid this response would turn out to be an essay! But you've made me think about this chapter a a bit more and i appreciate the comments you've left here. It's made me see what i've done well and not so well so it gives me a point to work on! :P

I do however want to comment on your comment on Peter! Just that i loved it and i hate when Peter is thought to be a baboon without any prospects. I think he would have and i think he was once their best mate and had their trust implicitly. Also Sirius - yes i thought i could get away with it because he'd be the only one reckless enough to think that it would be fine. I think it show's some of his naivety too though and that he doesn't have a clear vision of the war yet. Kind of like the idea that war will be over by Christmas kind of thing. He has a pretty clear vision at times and experienced a lot more than others but i think that there was still a lot for him to learn :P

Thank you so much for your comments and thoughts! i've found them really helpful!


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Review #22, by Roots in Water Leaving Hogwarts

31st December 2012:
It's Roots in Water here with your review! Sorry for taking so long to write it!

Oooh- let me just tell you right off the bat that I loved you using this scene as a "starting point" for the story. It's a wonderful beginning to chose because graduation truly can be called "the start of something new". As well, at this point in their lives the war has developped into something worth worrying about (giving you your story) and they have the strength to worry about it.

As well, though I did enjoy your "tell the story backwards" method, I think that this (more usual) method of storytelling will suit the story just as well, or perhaps even better. It will certainly allow you greater ease with the progression of the plot and I'm very interested to see how you will integrate parts of the old version into this one. :)

I liked your characterization of Eleanor in this chapter- she still had a very amusing air about her but she was also irritated and annoyed by the war in a way that clearly explained why she didn't want to participate in it. Her comments about her friends were an excellent way to explore the effects of the war on them as well as give further reasoning behind her distaste to participate in the war.

I really liked the moment between Sirius and Eleanor. It very clearly showed the feelings between them (and Sirius' protectiveness was so very sweet!). On a slightly more practical level, it also showed that Eleanor was in danger just because of her blood status.

I noticed a few typos as I was reading that I'll just point out quickly. To begin, with the phrase "i'll put some grow-your-own warts" you should capitalize the "I" in "I'll" and with the phrase "attention, his body", "His body" should be the start of a new sentence. As well, with the phrase "I associated myself with" I think that the "myself" should be taken out as it makes the flow of the sentence slightly awkward and with the phrase "Bones, some people", "Some people" should be the start of new sentence as well. Then, with the phrase "Its fine" it should be "it's" and with "her friendships with the other Gryffindor girls was disintegrating" I would use either "friendship" or "were" to ensure that the verb conjugation matched the noun.

Your description was great! It was very easy to visualize the scenes, including both the actions of the characters as well as their emotions.

All in all, I think that you're off to a fabulous new start! The story is very interesting and I'm amazed as to the amount of background that you managed to slip smoothly into one chapter! Thanks for requesting a review and I hope that I covered everything in your request. ;)

Author's Response: Hey Roots!

Thank you so much for reviewing this and so sorry for the late response!

I really appreciate your comments that this is an okay spot to start. I was feeling really uneasy with the decision to nix the method i had used to tell the story before- however it is allowing for better character development i'm finding. Also, it gives a bigger view of what the war might have been like and the situations that everyone faced during that time.

I'm happy you liked the part between them. Fluff and romance- intimacy of any kind really i feel are my weakest points in writing and i'm always worried that it'll come off as forced and awkward. However I wanted them to seem like they are already really comfortable with each other and that they have a certain amount of feels between them.

Thank you for pointing those mistakes out! I will be going back and correcting those!! :P

Thank you so much for your review!! ^_^


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Review #23, by Your Secret Santa Leaving Hogwarts

24th December 2012:
Hi there again.

My favorite part about this story is your characterization. We get to know both Amelia and Eleanor better. This chapter makes me believe even stronger that Eleanor doesn't want to be a part of this, and she definitely doesn't want this war. I love how you write that she feels like she should be happy and excited, yet she's not. It makes it clear that Eleanor isn't exactly like the other Death Eaters, because she really doesn't like what they are doing. She doesn't enjoy it like Bellatrix. I also love how she bitterly explains that the war is taking their future away from them, forcing them to do things they don't want to do. It, again, makes me think she is forced into this, that it's not something she wants to do. I also love how she mentions her family, and how bitter she sounds when she explains how people view them.

I also love Amelia (And I love them name, it's the name of my OC in the story I'm writing). She seems very different from Eleanor, but the connection/the bond between them feels very real. They are different, yet they do have amazing chemistry.

I also have to mention Sirius. He is probably the character I need to think is realistic no matter what, because I love him (especially during marauders era). If I think he is acceptable, then you have definitely written him well. But I didn't think that about the Sirius in your story. I actually LOVED him. It's just how I imagined him, and I'm so excited right now. And I loved the interactions between him and Eleanor, but I have to admit I'm kind of curious about their relationship. What are they exactly? Actually, don't answer that. I'll find out later. I just can't wait to see what will happen between them. This is by far my favourite story, and I can't wait to read the next chapter.

- Your Secret Santa

Author's Response: Hi! I'm so happy that you like the characterization! That, to me, is one of the most important parts in a story and it's such a compliment that you think it's strong here. It's great that your picking that up from her, how she isn't in the war right now, for good or bad and she doesn't see it as something she can really give her soul to. I think there is so many stories about someone fighting desperately for a cause that they forget the people who weren't sure, who were scared or who hated war.

I have a special place for Amelia too and i like that you feel like their friendship is actually there. I've read stories, not just ff, but boks where it feels like the interactions are stale and forced. That is definitely not what i'd like to see in my story so it's really great to see you write that you liked it.

and THANK YOU!! (i'm saying that a ot it seems, your reviews really have blown me away) Anyway, thank you SO much for that massive compliment about Sirius. I hope he continues to be good because I have a lot of love for him too and I constantly fear that his characterization isn't strong enough. It's good to hear that you think i'm going something right, even if he just comes in briefly here.

Thank you so much! I'm really pleased you've enjoyed this so far! I hope to see you around again :P


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Review #24, by Your Secret Santa Beginning of the End

24th December 2012:
Hi there. Sorry I'm late with your gift, but I have been sick for some time now.

I love how you start the story. It's exciting and makes me wanna read the rest. You get straight to the point, yet to leave the reader curious.

My favorite part is your description. I sometimes struggle with description, but it seems to come naturally to you. The description of her feelings and thoughts are so good that I can feel everything I believe she feels. It seriously gave me chills.That doesn't happen very often to me, but it did when I read this. I can see the story happening in my head, and it's just one of the best stories I've read so far.

I also love the mood in the story. I don't read stories that have that kind of mood very often, but I might do that from now on. Everything is very dark and heavy. For me it's important that a writer don't over-do the mood, and fortunately you didn't. I also think you write very realistically, which makes me believe in it. This is also because your plot is very believable, and you stick to it all the way.

I also found your character very interesting. It's Eleanor, right? I love how you describe her, and makes it seem like she doesn't really want it. She is almost forced into it. She seems like someone who knows what's wrong, yet feels like she has to do it anyway. I think she has the potential to become a really good character, once you get to know her a little better.

What I'm really curious about, though, is what Sirius did. I hope I'll find out quickly. Anyway, it was really intriguing. I'll soon be back with more gifts.

Merry christmas!

- Your Secret Santa

Author's Response: I can't thank you enough for al these reviews you gave me! They are absolutely lovely!

Description is something that i've definitely worked at for a while and i'm glad it's seeming to pay off. I always view my stories as if they were a scene from a movie and I try to explore what i see and explain it to someone who has never seen it. (which obviously no one really has in a way)

I'm really happy that you like the mood. That sounds morbid because the mood is so dark but as an author it's always great to hear that someone can really feel the mood in the writing. I'm glad that it came across to you because i always see that as one of the most important aspects of writing is to draw the reader into the story in someway.

Yes, it's Eleanor and you are exactly correct. She really doesn't want to be there and the story explores what brought her to this point and made her make the decisions she has.

Thank you so much for your lovely review!!


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Review #25, by shadowycorner Beginning of the End

10th December 2012:
Hi, here for the exchange! :) First of all, let me just say how intriguing this was to read. I expected something else entirely, but what I got in the end was great. I like that you chose Marion Cotillard for the banner, because I was kind of hearing the words in her voice, which was really really cool.

The imagery you use is very unique and different. All the images are sort of negative, scary, and they build the heavy and dramatic atmosphere. I also liked that you didn't feed the reader with information about the setting and everything right away, but rather let him figure things out on his own gradually.

The writing was very good and easy to get lost into. I feel captivated by this character and want to read what she sees when her life flashes before her. :) I'd be very glad to read the next chapter if you fancied another swap, this was really nice. I didn't really see the humor in it, but I guess that's intended for later parts.

Happy Holidays!

Author's Response: I'm glad that you liked the beginning and that it surprised you. That is really cool that you were able to imagine Marion's voice with this. I've always imagined Eleanor as a mix between Marion and Ellen Paige. More Marion though obviously which is why i chose her to feature.

I'm really happy you enjoyed the beginning of this and i'd love to do a swap again. So don't be surprised when you see me popping by your thread :D . I'm not shocked that you didn't see the humour. This story was my first venture into the humour genre and i've never intended it to be the typical slapstick, crack fic that circulates on hpff as humour (not that I dislike them, they are amusing) but the humour here is more of a wry, sarcastic kind of humour that is underneath the surface. It's probably the wrong genre but it was put there for the challenge i once entered. Obviously, this first war story isn't going to be funny.

happy holidays dear! Thank you so much for your review, i really appreciated it!


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