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Spring Planting  by Branwyn 8 Review(s)
mirthorReviewed Chapter: 1 on 3/29/2005
A ruler's lot in life - the grave responsibility to raise sons to sacrifice for his country, this illustrates the twist well. I'd think it would make him secretly resent Gondor as equally as he adores it.

I liked the line about the tooth missing and the smudge of dirt on F's nose. So many times when we're writing about ancient times, we forget that they were just as human as we.

Nancy BrookReviewed Chapter: 1 on 3/12/2005
Yowza! Such a gentle thing to come to such an abrupt and intense end! Amazing! Really great ...

BodkinReviewed Chapter: 1 on 11/11/2004
It must be hard on children to be the offspring of Those In Power and have to learn from their early years a self-control of which most adults are incapable. I love the hopeful look on Boromir's face after enduring a morning of tedium. And while Boromir knows to be there and be silent, little Faramir is young enough to be allowed to play in the dirt.

Denethor is managing to be a very alert father as well as a lord here. Not only is he noticing Boromir, he is very aware of what Faramir is doing - and is ready to intervene. Both sons trust him too - shining eyes and hopeful looks and he clearly loves them. Great look at their relationship.

rememberReviewed Chapter: 1 on 11/9/2004
Faramir and the crow turning their heads-- what a great image.
Does the man justice, and makes you glad to think that he might have felt differently about his younger son at one point.

The KarenatorReviewed Chapter: 1 on 11/9/2004
This is a beautiful piece. In only a few words you conveyed such a lovely moment between the steward and his sons. It really is nice to see the father Denethor was when the boys were young. It also helps us understand why Faramir was always hopeful that he could gain his father's approval. He had it once and still loved his father. And it's reassuring that Denethor did indeed love his youngest son. I really like this.

I saw Daw's recommendation and came back by to read your story. It was well worth it.


Author Reply: Karen:

You know, Tolkien never said that Denethor did not love Faramir dearly--he just said that the steward loved Boromir more. I do imagine that the estrangement between father and son happened later, when Faramir reached adolescence and began to show an intellect that rivaled his father's. Yes, I do think Faramir would look back wistfully to the time when there was an uncomplicated love between him and his father.
Oh, so you went to see that OTHER story?
Thanks you so much for writing!


grumpyReviewed Chapter: 1 on 11/9/2004
great story. So nice to see one where Denethor is the caring father, before the palantir took over his mind.

daw the minstrelReviewed Chapter: 1 on 11/9/2004
Oh my, Branwyn. You are amazing. This was poetic and piercing. I just saw a post in LJ where someone asked for stories in which Denethor is not evil. I'm going to hurry over and recommend this little gem.

Author Reply: Hullo, Daw--
[Blushing furiously] Thanks for the kind words and for recommending this small story to the person in LJ. Tell those misguided people who say Denethor is evil that I demand satisfaction and will fight them, armed with my worn but trusty thesaurus, at dawn.
BTW, on the Arda list, you mentioned the need for a sarcastic smiley. How about this?
Sort of a "raspberry" face.
Thanks again for writing!

Raksha The DemonReviewed Chapter: 1 on 11/9/2004
A lovely vignette in the lives of our favorite dysfunctional Gondorian family, only this obviously takes place while they were still functional!

I liked the imagery of Faramir and the raven, picking at the earth, turning their heads at the same time.

And the last paragraph, with Denethor realizing that he's always going to worry about arrows that can hurt his young-but-growing son, is heartbreaking. Especially since it will be Faramir's wound by an arrow that finally sends Denethor over the edge into madness.

Good job!

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