|About Us News Resources Login Become a member Help Search|
|To See A World by Nightwing||16 Review(s)|
|Elven Queen of Gondor||Reviewed Chapter: 29 on 10/19/2004|
|Thank you for clarifying the details for me. I reread certain passages, and they make much more sense now. |
The one thing I noticed while getting over the chapters anew was that you could trim some passages. In my humble opinion each chapter should transport real information about the plot. It should move the story forward. So you might keep an eye on staying on the path that is valuable for the storyline.
I look forward to your next chapter.
|Thundera Tiger||Reviewed Chapter: 29 on 10/17/2004|
|Look, look, look! I'm here! I made it! Yipee! Okay, let's see if I can make up for my long absence.|
The main, overaching theme I really want to comment on is character development. Your characterization is superb, and has been since the first chapter. Legolas is every inch the elven prince he should be. He is proud, he is capable, he is independent, he is wise, he is shrewd, he is perceptive, and above all else, he is elven. The world is a different place for him, and with but little touches, you show that. You also keep his character traits in place, but you turn them against him. He is wise enough to know despair, he is shrewd enough to know there is little to be done about his current condition, he is perceptive enough to know what Aragorn won't tell him, and his pride comes into direct conflict with his capabilities and his tattered independence. It's an amazing clash of character, and then you develop it over the span of many chapters. Legolas's changes and his adjustments are fascinating, and you take him through some very logical and expected emotional hills. It's all extremely believable and very much in keeping with what I would expect for someone like Legolas. The development we see in this most recent chapter as Legolas realizes he has been raging against the forest which could have been his most valuable ally is monumental, and when he finally accepts the forest back into him, it's as though he becomes whole once more. And a good thing, too, because it looks as though Aragorn needs him.
Speaking of Aragorn, let's talk about his character development. He shares many of Legolas's traits, but they also differ in key ways. As a Ranger should be, he is wise, shrewd, independent, capable, and proud, but he's also mortal and he adapts better to changing situations because that is what mortals have to do. They don't have time to waste on adapting when their entires lives seem to be one big change. And though Aragorn grieves along with Legolas, he seems to tackle the practical aspects of this limitation better than Legolas does. I suppose it could be argued that it's because it isn't happening to Aragorn, but it seems to go deeper than that, which is a testament to you as an author. Aragorn also shows a tremendous amount of loyalty and dedication, which harks back to his training as a healer and to his protective nature in general. The fact that he is willing to lose his own foot because Legolas needs him is an amazing tribute to the character, and I thank you for bringing us on an incredible journey to the point where Aragorn would seriously consider such a thing. Throughout the chapters so far, you've kept your principle characters consistent, and given the circumstances, I can only imagine what a trial that must have been. This is an exceptional story of drama and friendship, and I eagerly await the next chapter to see where you take these two heroes next. And with any luck, I'll actually review on time, too! ;)
Author Reply: Oh goodness. Legolas is all that? Truly I've just been pottering along, for the most part feeling like I've been hanging on to any sort of character development by the skin of my teeth. I'm very grateful that you think both Legolas' and Aragorn's actions/reactions/thoughts have remained consistent throughout this long tale. And hopefully things have not gotten too dull and heavy, as I really have been taking my sweet time in bringing out different things, much to the irritation of those who crave action. I thought I'd have gotten to it by now, but other things seem to always be stepping in and demanding to be addressed. I'm bloody happy that the elf's desperation, despression and angst are about finished though. It was getting a bit tedious for both readers and author. Thanks for the encouragement! It means a lot coming from an author of your standing.
Oh, and do not worry about the charts and things I made for LoLaS. It is one of my favorite fics, so I had fun. It IS a complicated story with a great deal going on. Now I feel like I have a better handle on everything. Well, I think I do...
|Elven Queen of Gondor||Reviewed Chapter: 29 on 10/17/2004|
reading your reply to my review I first wanted to thank you for your straightforwardness. As I have learned many authors are sensitive when it comes to criticism and some even shy away from it since the story they deliver is precious to them. I understand and respect that. All these ff sites offer authors a chance to go public with their ideas and it would be rude to disregard their feelings. So my comments on your story are meant as suggestions, which you can take or leave, or drop my review into the virtual garbage after reading.
The first four chapters are flawless. The writing is excellent, the pace good, the plot develops before the reader's eyes, and everyone can feel the tension emerging from the bare necessity to save the Elf's life. Aragorn's feelings for his friend are described with heartbreaking intensity, and the back-from-death scene is great. Additionally the flashbacks are well placed and not too long to distract the reader from the ongoing plot.
In chapter 5 you write that a bundle with food is left on the doorstep. The two refugees have stayed there for some time in the hut, unharmed and unnoticed by others as it seems. No matter who left the food, would he not have looked through the window? Not tried to make contact? Or, if the people from the wood knew the healer to have lived there for a long time, would they not gather and meet the strangers? In the worst case they would accuse them of murder since the old man is not there with them.
The healer is another subject. Much time passes between the arrival of Legolas and Aragorn at the hut, and their finding of the dead man in the apple orchard. Could he not have been found by those people living there?
Time passes, and the heroes start getting prepared for winter. Legolas' health has returned aside from his eyesight. Should they not have at least tried to return to Mirkwood? (That they won't make it due to a fast weather change or any other obstacle is certainly possible...)
You bring in two new characters, the guard from the city and the boy - which I both find very credible and the boy indeed lovable in his innocense and kindness towards Legolas - but then you leave this way, and the reader does not get to know why the citizens do not like Elves, or what becomes of the young boy or the governer of the city. There are also no further thoughts by Legolas or Aragorn about them, but I think the happenings at the city and some facts about the people in the woods will be explained in further chapters, right?
Legolas' slow acceptance of his blindness is well written and credible. Adding his elven abilities, this makes a nice development of his character as he learns that the world is still open to him. But his abilities reach further than one might have thought when he fights three wolves in the woods.
Well, I hope you won't stalk away from your computer with an angry growl into my direction. You write a wonderful, enjoyable story, and I hope to find an update of it really soon.
Author Reply: Lessee... I'll try to hit on the points you have made and clarify if I can. The mysterious gift givers had been watching Aragorn and Legolas, saw that they needed help, and gave it in the only way they could. They understood pretty quickly that they had not killed the old man. You'll recall the conversation our heroes had with Alun, when he described these people. Perhaps they did look in the window, certainly they were peeking from the cover of the woods, but they have their own reasons for wanting to remain anonymous.
By the time the hill men had found the old man, he was already dead. They are wanderers, and were elsewhere when he was in dire need. He was discovered by them only after he had died, and they had not the means at the time to free him and bury the body before Legolas and Aragorn found him.
If our heroes returned to Mirkwood, we'd have no story! I wrote that Legolas was unable to travel for a time. He was still too ill, and the snows then blocked the passes. It snows sooner in the mountains than on lower ground. He could not go alone, Aragorn would have gotten totally buried in snow, food would have been much more difficult to find in winter, and no way could they have carried enough to see them through several weeks of hiking. So they're stuck until spring.
Yes indeed, the boy and his guard will be back, as will action in the city, so sit tight! They were introduced for a reason, and have not been forgotten about by the author.
I agree about the wolves... it was a bit too much. Must have gotten a little too fan-girlie there! Very shortly after I posted the chapter I reread it and thought it would have been more believable with two wolves, with the second one taking the elf down. I may repost that chapter when I have a spare moment.
I'm not grumpy in the least! I like it when readers warn me to work on keeping the plot moving in a consistent manner. Update should come this week. I'm about to send it to my beta.
|Elven Queen of Gondor||Reviewed Chapter: 29 on 10/15/2004|
|I haven't left a review yet, but I follow the story with the updates. Very impressing piece of ff you deliver here! I hope you continue soon so that I find out if Legolas really found his friend!|
BTW do you like to receive constructive criticism on this story?
Author Reply: Hmmm, do I like to receive constructive criticism? (Nightwing winces, begins shuffling about in her chair, planning evasive moves....)
Yes and no. I accept them with less than good grace most of the time, and stalk away from the computer after reading them grumbling and irritated. I am terribly touchy, defensive and sensitive. BUT, I do recover in time, and then I am able to take another look at the comments and usually find them to be of value. I do not necessarily end up agreeing with the opinion of the reviewer, but quite often there is a little point made that can be of help to me as a writer.
So fire away! I'm as ready as I'll ever be.
|Timmy2222||Reviewed Chapter: 29 on 10/11/2004|
|What bravery and friendship you displayed as Legolas sets out to find his friend. It was a good idea to let him get back some kind of sense for the "real world" when he realises that he can hear the trees and 'feel' his way through the forest.|
What will he do once he has found Aragorn? How can he help him out of this deadly trap? As you have shown before this trap was meant to be only opened with a key, and with the fading strength of Aragorn they both will have hard work ahead to get it open again.
Hm, I just thought that the arrival of Legolas would be an excellent moment for those men to appear, who have put the trap there. Ai, I hope not!
Author Reply: Hi, Timmy! I'm glad to see you again. I wanted that moment in the woods to be significant for Legolas. He needed to come to a new level of acceptance of his blindness, to realize that he is not as isolated as he believed, and to start getting on with it. About time, too. All that anger and depression was wearing me out.
What will he do once he finds Aragorn? Let's just say I hope he ate his spinach today!
|Windsinger||Reviewed Chapter: 29 on 10/8/2004|
|Oh joy! I returned from vacation to find another "To See A World" chapter! I printed it immediately, took it home to savor, and just now found a smidge of time to shoot you a quick note. Another wonderful chapter! I really, really admire, like, -- love -- , your Legolas and Aragorn. What I wouldn't give to share an evening around the campfire with them. They are the type of people who enrich the lives of those around them -- helping them to become better people by just to trying to live up to their example. Sigh ----|
I love how your Legolas finally cannot keep pushing his fear and anger away but must allow it to almost consume him, really letting himself feel its full depth before he can move beyond it. And then having him realize he is the discordant tone in the forests song! Very nice! The journey you have taken Legolas on is just so -- believable and real! Only once he has admitted, and allowed himself to feel, the depth of his despair is he able to finally question the energy he wasted on 'fruitless yearning' and, once again, can allow the "... tree-song and star-song ..." become part of him, to allow the undying Song to restore his soul. I keep repeating the same thing -- but words fail me. Wonderful, wonderful stuff!
And Aragorn, finally sliping into darkness, his last thoughts of Arwen, after fighting to the very end to find a way to free himeself, to survive the elements, to live.
And then there are wolves! I like that Legolas, if he had the time, might have been able to reason with them, or convince them to move on to other prey. After all, wolves are part of the natural universe he is connected with so it makes sense that he could, at least on some level, be able to communicate with them. And now he is injured, too!
And although he has found Aragorn he has not yet FOUND him.
I can wait, I really can, for the next chapter. Take your time. I know the creative process can't be rushed -- but, gad! It is hard! I am waiting on pins and needles to read about the reunion, tending to injuries and -- illness? and then healing, in more ways than one. And who is doing this? And why?
Sometimes I wish I would only find the few really good stories after they are completed so I can read them from start to finish in one sitting. But then I also love to read chapter by chapter because I find I enjoy the detail more. And then when the story is finished I can read from start to end with a deeper understanding and I think I get more out of it.
However, I am not sure I want your story to ever end!
So, I will keep checking for the next installment -- Great job! Kudos! You have made my week and I am so glad your story is now lodged in my psyche.
Author Reply: Hello Windsinger! I think you must be new. Thanks for such a lovely, enthusiastic review.
I'm very glad you liked that Legolas was saddened by the fact that he had to kill the wolves. No one else has mentioned it, but I thought it was an important facet of his personality to bring out, so I appreciate you noticing it.
At first I just had him kill the wolves, but then on re-reading and pondering, I thought "Nope. He needs to feel badly about this". I wanted to demonstrate in him a reverence for life. All beings play a part in the balance of Arda. He's not sorry about killing orcs, because they are an abomination wrought by evil for evil purposes, but any other life that he takes he feels either respect and gratitude, as in killing game for meat and furs, or sadness, as in the situation with the wolves.
|Muinthel||Reviewed Chapter: 29 on 10/6/2004|
|Geeeee.....what a chapter!!!|
While reading I crew all tense and excited that my little one inside got all wound up and kept kicking me ...so I needed to run to the bathroom and could not even read it all at once!
This chapter was worth the waiting....so stong and powerful. I'm so glad that finally Legolas found a path to himself again. Sigh...I got slowly "tired" of his frustration and anger and selfreproaches (do you have this word in english??). When he finally listen to the forest around him my inner music was pumping up the volume.
I love the silent grey shadows, the ghosts that would escort Aragorn on his journey......what a picture and sign for the rest of the chapter. Absolutely beautiful!
And what an ending.....
but I promise I will be patient for the next chapter. But knowing you the way back to the cottage will not be uneventfull!
Thanks for this chapter....(the inner music is still on full volume)!
Author Reply: My goodness, don't get so excited about fanfic that the baby comes out before it should!! Maybe it's a girl, and she is in love with Aragorn too!
Yes, I must admit I also was getting tired of all the angst and sadness and anger that Legolas kept stewing in. It seemed realistic and necessary, but I'm very relieved he is moving on now. I think "self reproaches" is a perfectly good description! I know just what you meant.
I'm glad you liked the "ghosts" Aragorn saw, but did you realize they were the wolves? Or was I too vague, and did not make it clear enough?
I am happy you are still reading! I know how busy you are.
|fliewatuet||Reviewed Chapter: 29 on 10/4/2004|
|Uh, now I feel bad, somehow. The chapter is displayed just fine now, but you seem to have lost all the reviews (mine included). By using the 'edit'-option and then removing the old content and replacing it by the new instead of deleting the chapter and uploading a new one you should be able to change the contents of the chapter without risking the reviews. |
Anyway, I loved the chapter! Somehow, I am glad that Aragorn failed to hack off his foot, but Legolas seems to have arrived not a moment too soon. I am so relieved that he managed to overcome his grief for what he has lost and could focus on the abilities that remained instead. And Our Favourite Heroes are back together at last! Though with Aragorn half dead (or three-quarters dead?) and Legolas injured as well ... I wonder how Legolas is to pry the dreaded trap open ...
fliewatuet (waiting, patiently, for the next chapter)
Author Reply: Yep, my booboo. Hopefully my next chapter won't look screwy. That has never happened before, so I'm rather mystified.
Well, with only one foot he'd never be called "Strider" now, would he? That won't do at all. Hmmm, maybe half-dead. Not all dead, but the poor ranger does need warming up pronto.
As for Legolas, he'll need a whole lotta adrenaline. Reunited and it feels so good...
|grumpy||Reviewed Chapter: 29 on 10/4/2004|
|great chapter, so glad that Legolas has renewed himself, and is in touch with the song and nature again. Loved the part about him decovering that even thou Aragorn was alone in the woods, he still had to step behind a tree! Hope that now that Legolas is so near, that Aragorn has not become a midnight snack for the wolves.|
Author Reply: I'm so glad the elf has renewed himself too. He was beginning to wear me out with all his anger and tears, and I don't think I was the only one. I enjoy tossing in the odd little humourous bits. It breaks up the darkness, and it's real, too.
|e_vrouw||Reviewed Chapter: 29 on 10/4/2004|
|Yes! Finally you could find enough time to update the story!|
I've been waiting for this chapter for weeks but it was certainly worth the wait.
This chapter was fantastic!!!!
Legolas seems to change completely this chapter. It's like he's a totally different elf!
In the beginning he's still afraid and unsure of himself. Until he realises that it's actually him that's causing a lot of the trouble. He unconsciously believed the forest was against him, but in the end it was that belief that prohibited him from working together with the forest. Like a self-fullfilling prophecy.(I hope I got this right, if not you'll have to tell me)
While at the end he's like his old self again. He actually tells Rhosgernroch that he'll protect her! And he rescues Aragorn from 3 wolves!!! I was cheering him on.
He should start braiding his hair again, he was fantastic! Though he should work with Aragorn on his swordplay.
"And this time the elf, not the horse, led the way."
I was actually cheering out loud for Legolas after I read that line, and it took me a couple of minutes to calm down enough to read the rest of the story. :)
I liked the beginning of the chapter, a nice way to get you back into the story after the long wait. Just Legolas trying to find out why Aragorn would walk around a tree. I loved it!
I absolutely love the fact that Legolas is communicating with the forest as he is. He let's the trees be his eyes.
He finally finds Aragorn!!! :D
Damn, I just thought of something. How's Legolas going to get that trap off of Aragorn's foot??
I'm getting a bit worried about Legolas' headache. I wonder if he knows how to make the tea he needs to get rid of the pain. Up till now it was always Aragorn that selected the herbs to put into them right? I don't think Aragorn will be waking up anytime soon (not that I think he'll die, or something like that), so how's he going to cure his headache? It'll drive him mad.
(oh oh, I hope I haven't just given you another angst/torture idea.)
Love the title. Not only did Legolas find Aragorn, he also rediscovered his connection to the natural world. He's not alone anymore
Hope things are going well, and you can update again soon.
I just had a very idiotic thought: How long do you think Legolas will be able to sit still after he recovers his sight? He'll probably behave like a little schoolboy, running all over the place. ;D
No Tithlam this time. But I really, really, really don't mind. Though I hope she kept Aragorn's socks warm for him. Don't want him to get frostbite. :)
Author Reply: I'm so glad you liked Legolas' turnaround. I wanted this to be a big moment for him, and realize that he had not lost his place in the world. And I do have plans for the return of the braids.
I loved the title too! It's a song by The Who, and I thought it would make a great chapter title. Legolas was indeed seeking more than just Aragorn.
Well, if Tithlam is anything like my old calico Maji (who is the model for Tithlam), there will socks strewn all over the cabin by the time they get back. Legolas will be falling all over them.