This is exactly what I needed to read tonight. A light hearted, care free, cutesy story about a guy and a girl who get together one day. It was just perfect for my mood. It's like a good chick flick in written form. It made me happy and giggly, but best of all, left me with those happy tingles that only a well written fluffy romance can give you.
I think that the biggest reason that I was so happy to have found this story was because it was so easy for me to relate to Lily. She was everything I was at that age - bookish, rule abiding, not into sports, and always single. You also really opened Lily up in a way that made it easy for the reader to really delve into her head and understand who she is and where she's coming at. As a character, she was likable and believable. All her fears were just laid out plainly, so it was easy to really get into the story.
The development of Lily's and Brian's relationship was not deeply explored in this fic, but it didn't need to be. We know that they were old friends who drifted apart and who managed to bump into each other and go for a walk to catch up. While I might roll my eyes at this sort of plot normally, I was captured by this one. You managed to create a back story without being so obvious and beating the fact that they were friends into our head. Rather, you gave a little back story then used their conversations to bring them together. I think my only complaint (in the whole story really) is that I would have loved to see more interaction between the two before they kissed. It felt a little sudden to me, and I was disappointed that I didn't get the chance to see them interact more, because it was so cute and felt so real.
Brian is a real joy to read. He's just so lovely and everything that makes a guy wonderful. He's just so chill and smart and you wrote him in such a way that I was feeling totally attracted to him, even though we only get to know him for a few thousand words. I was rooting for the two to get together simply because of who Brian appears to be. The best way I can put this is that I was so sold on this character that I wasn't even upset that Teddy had a kid because I just wanted Lily to be with Brian, even though it meant defying my own OTP. I really loved how you left out who exactly he was until the very end. It helps eliminate any preconceived notion we might associate with a child of Neville, but it also makes perfect sense that it would be a child a Neville, because who else would they grow up with? While a more attentive reader might pick it up with the broken wrist comment and some of the mentions to their childhood, I loved the pleasant surprise at the end.
One of my favourite aspects of this story is the interactions between Lily and Roxanne, and Lily and her mother. Roxanne is the perfect, stereotypical chick flick friend. She's close to Lily and understands her, but they are very different from each other. You managed to take the friend type that we would expect from this sort of story and really worked with it to make it feel original and natural. I wasn't rolling my eyes at the clicheness of it all, rather, I took her as a sort of foil to Lily. At the same time, Roxanne is the friend you love because she just knows what you want. In this instance, Roxanne contrasts Lily's mum. While both of them knew that Lily wanted to be alone with Brian, Roxanne let Lily go in a much more subtle way, while Ginny did the typical mum thing. In the moment where Ginny is dropping hints about Lily and Brian, I could feel Lily's annoyance and embarrassment because it is a mum thing to do. I know that my mum has dropped hints about boys (more boys I didn't want to be with), so I could relate to Lily in a very practical way because I've been there.
Overall, this story just made me smile, which was excellent. It's very easy to get tied up in so called "meaningful" literature that I forget that it's sometimes nice just to relax with a light, feel good fic.
This is really great!! Have you written anymore about these two? (It's probablly on your author page but I haven't had a chance to look at all your work yet.) :) I really enjoyed this. Please write more! You are definitely one of my favorite authors!
Author's Response: Hi there! Thank you so much! No, I haven't written much else about them. Maybe someday - right now I'm stuck with the Marauders. ;) I'm glad you enjoyed it! I really appreciate the review - thanks again! ~Gina :)
I figured Brian was Neville's son when you mentioned Leaky Cauldron! Lovely story, by the way. And Teddy has a son- with Victoire, I presume. I see them naming their kids after his parents or grandfather, or something French from her family, possibly. Anyhow, just my musings. Great job- I'm a big fan of yours- I got an email about telling me you had a new story!! Keep writing and dreaming X
Author's Response: A very belated thank you so much for the lovely review, I'm so glad you enjoyed this story! I don't write my own characters very often, but I must say I sort of like Brian. I wonder if JKR had Neville becoming a dad? Thanks again! ~Gina :)
I spent the whole first half of the fic trying to think who Brian was, then I figured it out the second before I read about the Leaky Cauldron. I was so happy I was right, but I scanned the whole rest of the fic to see if I really was. You can't imagine how much suspense you put in the story by not telling us who the love interest was!
Author's Response: Yay, I'm glad I built a little suspense! And I'm glad you figured it out, hope you enjoyed it! A very belated thank you for the review, I appreciate it! ~Gina :)
I rather like Brian and think you've done a good job with his character. He certainly seems very real and you've given him enough diffidence to be regarded as Neville and Hannah's son, yet enough confidence to be his own man. I guessed who he was from the little touches sprinkled throughout (Mother a Hufflepuff, Father broke his wrist etc) so I didn't need the actual reveal at the end ... but it was a good touch.
*coughsplutterevilbritpickalert* We say autumn and not fall.
I liked the kiss - very sweet. ~Carole~
Author's Response: Ooh, now that it's FALL I should remember to say AUTUMN, lolol. Thanks, Carole! And a belated thank-you for the lovely review, I appreciate it (then and now, lol) ~Gina :)
I loved it. Need I say more? :)
Author's Response: I'm so glad! A belated thanks for letting me know, I appreciate the review!! ~Gina :)
This was another enjoyable story. I really liked your characterisation of Lily - often in fanfiction she seems to be written as a younger version of Ginny - popular, fiery, good at Quidditch, naturally talented but not necessarily hard-working etc, and you showed someone different, who was entirely her own person. Of course, I can see a fair bit of Harry and a little of Ginny in her, but I think you did a great job of creating someone new and interesting.
Brian was a great character, too - I'm glad you divulged his last name at the end, I was wondering how come he'd been a family friend... okay I probably could have guessed when you said he went into Hufflepuff "following in his mother's footsteps, not his father's", but I didn't. So glad you put that in. I loved the way he stood up for Lily and how he could get so excited about broomstick regulations. Even though he didn't like broomsticks. He seems like a very believable OC to me, and really perfect for your interpretation of Lily.
Just a few small things - Being in both different houses and different years at Hogwarts had meant her and Brian saw less and less of each other. - I'm pretty sure it should be "she and Brian", not "her and Brian".
Also, you wrote "American" instead of "America".
Before I finish, I loved Ginny in this, although I was surprised that Harry didn't say something like "what are you talking about, Ginny? We planned to meet here..." because Harry doesn't seem to have very much tact. Perhaps his wife has taught him some over twenty or something years of marriage.
Author's Response: A very belated thank you for the lovely review, Katrina! I'm glad you enjoyed the story and really appreciate the comment about Brian as a character because until recently I haven't written many stories with OCs in them. Now all of a sudden I'm juggling quite a few, although they are all minor. Good point about Harry, but lets just say he's learned after so many years, lol. Thanks again! ~Gina :)