Wow, very good. I always liked Andromeda, probobly because I can relate to her the most. EVen though we did not meat her in the book, I think this is how she would have acted, very passive, adn wanting to make peace with her sisters. There were a few things I would do, but that dont have to be done.
FIrst of all, I would put the letter in Italics. It shows she is writing it.
Also, why did she write the letter. I know it was to get her feelings out, but did she come knowing she was going to write the letter? It seemed like she just kind of... did.
Besides that, good job and keep writing!
Author's Response: I explained the italics thing in Peri's response, and the letter in, um... LadyAlesha's, I think. Thank you so much for the review!
Wow - I really liked the first sentence. I could almost feel the cold sunlight. I also found the last paragraph brilliant - it was simple, but it really was heartbreaking.
That would make things easier. I could just forget and go on living my life. I don’t know why I’m here in the first place. I should just leave.
The only thing was that I felt like her thoughts could have been broken up instead of in all one paragraph.
Overall, great job! :D
Author's Response: Thanks! Do you mean, her thoughts are separate from the paragraph, or each thought is a separate paragraph? Thank you for the input! I'll think about it! And I'm glad you liked it!
I like the emotion you portray. In the beginning, the use of "grey" as opposed to "gray" catches my eye. It implies a sort of darkness. I don't think a letter would be the most effective way of communicating to a grave - usually, people tend to talk - half to themselves, half to the dead person.
I think it could have had more power had you posed it as a partial self-reflection mixed in with the urge to clear up the past with her sister, even though it is too late.
I found the epitaph a bit dry for Bella. She seems extravagant to me - the type to have a bold declaration of her beliefs on her gravestone, rather than a bland meaningless phrase.
You do a great job with raising emotion and your mechanics are flawless in this piece. Nice work.
Author's Response: Thank you! I've never known the difference between gray and grey. I just always use the latter. Is there some rule I should be aware of? And I don't know why she wrote the letter. The way that I origanlly wrote it, it made much more sense, but it got rejected, so I had to add a whole begining that I originally didn't have. Therefore, the letter looks strange, but I didn't really want to change it. You have no idea how horrible I am at epitaphs. I spent literally a half hour trying to figure one out. Therefore, I would like to keep it as is. Didn't I imply a partial self-reflection? Well... I did reflect on her relationship with her sister, which is what the whole fic was about, so I think it's fine. Are you saying that you would have liked me to reflect on herself and her life minus Bella and Narcissa? Hm, that's an interesting idea. I'll think about that. My mechanics, eh? I usually have a bunch of typos/fragments/contradictions. I'm glad that I was better at it in this piece. Thank you so much for the lovely review! I heart con-crit!
Wow. The thoughts and emotions you managed to convey in this story were wonderful. I loved how as Andromeda began writing the letter to her sister, she didn't know what exactly to say. But as time went on, it seemed to me that the words sort of just flowed, and she was able to write down all the things she's felt, all the emotions she'd built up over time, and just let them out.
You also did a great job with you usage of words and such. I liked the metaphor you used in the end when you wrote, "She couldn’t help but feel that it was Bellatrix, even in death, brushing her thoughts away once more."
This was a very interesting story to read, as their aren't all that many that show the thoughts and emotions of Andromeda, and how she may have felt towards Bellatrix. I think that for a character we know little about, you have done an excellent job writing this story.
Author's Response: Thank you! I'm glad (<--Gah, I want to painfully fill that word) so many people liked this! It's an interesting idea, and an unexplored character. Luckily I managed to stay clear of making her OOC. Was that last line a metaphor? Yay for using device without meaning to! I love the last line. I think it sums up my fic nicely, and is, aparently, a metaphor. Yay! Thanks SO much for the (insert random adjective equivilent to 'nice' here; I'm tired of thinking of them!) review!!! :)
To start, I just wanted to say that this story was very well written, and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it.
Easily, my favorite thing about this fic was the characterization of Andromeda. Her thoughts before making it to the tombstone are great, and the letter is even better. Her feelings are more than understandable; especially the part about her fantasies of what a relationship between sisters should really be like. You do a great job of making the reader feel for Andromeda, and wish that she could’ve had the opportunity to find out. The short sentences you sometimes use in Andromeda's thoughts, really help with the characterization.
The finishing line was great. It fit in perfectly with the sad tone of the story, and made for a great ending.
One small thing…
“through the frost covered field”
I think there should be a dash between frost and covered.
I would like to add, that I loved the idea behind this fic. It is very original, and made me want to read it. I’m a fan of Andromeda, and was happy to see another story written about her.
Excellent job! =]
Author's Response: Thanks! I guess original ideas pay off! I wouldn't know; I rarely have them! I'll be sure to change that one nitpicked thing. Thanks for telling me that. And I'm really glad that you liked the letter. I'm happy with the way it turned out! It seemed to sum up how she was feeling.) Mucho gracious para el repaso muy bein! Er... Thanks a lot for the very good review. I tend to break into Spanish a lot.
Oh, Rachel. Rachel, Rachel, Rachel. What a wonderful fic! Really, I'm impressed. What made me want to click on this was the fact that it was about Andromeda; she's a character that we don't know a lot about, and since I do have a penchant for the Blacks, I've always been interested in her.
I think you characterized Andromeda very nicely in this. Her thoughts towards her sister, about letting go, were great. I feel genuinely sad for Andromeda, and perhaps for all three sisters. I have a sister myself, and we're pretty close, so it's sad to see three sisters who don't have that kind of relationship. Especially Andromeda, being somewhat of a outcast; that's horrible for her.
I find it interesting that you have Andromeda thinking that Bellatrix was always the favorite, because I personally have always seen Narcissa as the favorite. But I can see from what Andromeda was writing and feeling how Bella might've been the favorite. Nice job.
I think, like Periwinkle said, putting the letter in italics would have been good, just to distinguish between the letter and the narration a little. I also don't think the gravestone needed to be in bold, but alas, it's just personal opinion. Overall, though, excellent work, Rachel. I love it!
Author's Response: Leanne, Leanne, Leanne? :P lol! I literally squeed when I saw that you reviewed my story, then squeed again when I read it. I'm usually the one reviewing your stories, rambling on about how wickedly awesome they are! ;) Anyway, I'm so glad you liked this! I like how you could think of something in your life to relate this to. That's cool, how you thought about your relationship with your sister. I explained in my response to Anna's review why it's not italicised, and I do agree with you about the gravestone. Mostly because it draws so much attention to it; I think I'll change it, thanks! And thank you so much for this wonderful review! It meant a lot to me!
The Black sisters are among my favourite characters in the entire HP series. There should be a lot more fics about them, especially about Andromeda. So when I saw that you wrote a fic about her, I just had to read it.
I love how you portray Andromeda’s mixed feelings towards Bellatrix. On the one hand she seems to still love her and admire her in a way, but she also truly despises all the evil deeds she has done in her life. I liked how Andromeda says that she never really knew her sister, and that Bellatrix never really talked to her or tried to get close to her. That sounds very much like Bellatrix, always on her own, keeping things to herself and not letting other people see who she truly is. What I don’t understand is why Andromeda sits down and writes a letter to Bellatrix. She’s already at her grave, why not simply talk to her? You know, the way countless characters in movies do it, sit down in front of a grave and talk to the deceased. But maybe Andromeda would have been afraid of her sister to tell her all this? Even though Bellatrix is dead she still seems to have a strong hold over Andromeda, so Andromeda might feel as if she was violating her sisters peace by sitting down and talking to her. There’s still a choice to make with a letter, it can either be read or not, of someone talks it’s hard not to listen.
She was different. This is the most important of Andromeda’s thoughts while she decides if she should write the letter, to give it even more vehemence and importance, I would suggest using an exclamation mark instead of a period at the end of it.
It was as isolated spot, with hardly any tombstones occupying the vacant space. I suppose you meant to say ‘an isolated spot’ not ‘as isolated spot’ here, right?
It’s not like you would take the time to even if you could. I feel that there should be a comma in front of ‘even if you could’.
Now that you’re gone, you manage to do that to me still. ‘Now that you’re gone’ makes it sound as if Bellatrix didn’t have that power before she died, then later in the sentence it becomes obvious that she always had that power over Andromeda. ‘Even though you’re gone’ seems to be a better opening for this sentence.
I enjoyed this story immensely and I’m glad that I found it. There really should be more good Andromeda stories.
Author's Response: *Squee* I love getting reviews from people in SPEW, even if they're not official SPEW reviews. It still makes me feel special! ;) The Black sisters are by far my favorite characters (besides Neville) as well. I'm glad you liked this! The reason I had her write a letter was because she wanted to express her feelings, but she just didn't know what to say. She's never been able to flat out say what she wanted to her sister. So, she wrote it, because it needed to be said, but she didn't think that she would be able to say it out loud. Does that make sense? Thanks for the nit-picks; I'll be sure to make those changes. Thank you SO much for this review!!
I'm very impressed Rachel -- very. I had no idea you could write this well -- you're a great writer for someone who is 14. =) Righty, onto the real reviewing:
The aspect of your writing that astounded me the most was the description. What wonderful, colorful description. Not one sentence in this story is vague, without verbs or actions describing what the characters are doing. Your description is marvelous and altogether enviable.
Characterization is also something I can't let by. How you worded Andromeda's thoughts and her outlook on her sister not only worked perfectly in terms of their relationship, but also described them for who they were.
You really delve into the feelings of Andromeda. You really go deep -- something many authors leave out - they just graze the surface. But you seem like you know her so well, that you go into her mind and write just like she was talking. And this is perhaps, why this story is so appealing. Because it's realistic. It's there -- no faults in the characterization, thoughts or actions.
The only change that I would do is put the letter in italics. It messes up the reader when it's not, also it's easier.
The ending surprised me tremendously - I was sitting there, gawking at the computer. It's a nice ending, nice push to the ending. My favorite sentence is the last one -- such a beautiful way to end your story --
She couldn’t help but feel that it was Bellatrix, even in death, brushing her thoughts away once more.
It summarizes everything up -- to say that you have done a great job would be an understatement. =)
Author's Response: Okay, I was seriously freaked out when I saw all these shiny reviews until I saw the forums! :) Anyway... wow. Thank you so much! That meant a lot to me! Anyway, back to the review: I'm glad that you agreed with the characterization. Andromeda is a character that we know basically nothing about, so I just ran with this idea as soon as it came. I really don't have the slightest clue where the idea came from, or where Andromeda's character came from, but I'm glad it all worked out! ;) (I originally had the letter in italics, but it kept getting rejected for said reason. That's why it's not.) Anyway, thank you so, so much for this lovely review! I'm honored! :)
Wow! This was really good. Not at all the way I write Bella and Andromeda, much more cannon though. I really felt for Andromeda. It must have been hard for her to lose her family, and then to have to face the death of a sister she never really knew. Very well done!
Author's Response: First review! Yay! Both Bella and Andromeda are up to much interpretation, so I think that there are many ways that they can be written. I usually write them differently, too! Anyway, thank you for the very sweet review!