This is a lovely story - I'm impressed that you went through all that effort to research art restoration for this fic, and all that detail really added to the story. In fact, this story was just packed with details in general - the fast food and the fact that Elaine had Muggle money, the disposable cups, the argument at the beginning - which make it a really good mystery story.
Elaine was a very likeable and believable main character. She is very observant and knows her craft well, which makes her a good detective, and yet she also had that feel of an apprentice who's really trying to prove herself.
You painted a wonderful picture (excuse the pun) of an old Pureblood family in the Selwyns. You wrote the house-elf really well (I know she's not a main character, but she came across so believably without being a copy of Dobby, Kreacher or Winky.) Even the stepson secretly selling the old paintings because he's too lazy to get a job really fits into the way JKR represents the Purebloods in canon.
I very much enjoyed this story, and it was very well-written.
Author's Response: Haha. As any of the various friends I talk to over AIM will tell you, I am *addicted* to research. Details I'm good with...packing them into the story, not so much! Good to hear you think it worked for the mystery, though.
I think Elaine's not really qualified to be a detective-detective - too much running, for one thing! - so she's very much an apprentice wanting to prove herself who just happens to do a little detective work because she loves her craft and something is just not right here. I'm definitely glad you liked her. =)
Hahaha that old cliche does fit quite well here. The house-elf I didn't really think too much about except the mannerism with the blinking suddenly popped into my head and I thought that sounded unnerving but something a house-elf would do. And haha yes the stepson is definitely a lazy, rich manchild. I wasn't really thinking of canon so much as old-fashioned stuff, though, to be honest...I'd just come off reading a silly Georgian-era historical romance/mystery. -rolls eyes at self- But then, I do picture pureblood society as very Austenesque...
I'm glad you liked the story! I'm blushing, thank you so much for the review. =)
This was great, Minna. I loved the characters, I loved the story itself. It seemed kind of simple, but it took me to those mystery books I read as a kid-- Enid Blyton, and the like. Great fic :D
Author's Response: Aw, thanks BB. =D I think, much as I enjoy complex mysteries, I'm not very good at trying to write them, so yeah, this is definitely a simple mystery. Glad you liked it anyway, though. =)
Oh very clever. Minna, this is a great story. I loved the depth you went into regarding the art restoration and also the way everything slotted together. The addiction to fast food, for instance, was not only a great detail but ensured she had Muggle money to pay the ice cream girl. Great OC's as well.
Sorry not a particularly good review, but I did really enjoy it.
Author's Response: Thanks for reading and reviewing, Carole. =D Re: the ice cream girl - that actually wasn't planned at first. The scene popped into my head at work. And I'm glad you liked the OCs - and the fic itself. =D