MEFA Reviews for November 8, 2007 (Part 2)
- Title: And We Will Travel North · Author: bewize · Times: Mid Third
Age: 2851 - 3017 TA: Drabble · ID: 39
Reviewer: Larner · 2007-10-19 13:20:53
Aha! At last the thoughts of Elladan and Elrohir that led them to join
those of the Dunedain that could be gathered in haste and sent south
to Aragorn's aid. The title is a bit misleading, but the drabble is
Title: The Company of Heroes · Author: annmarwalk · Races: Hobbits:
Children · ID: 393
Reviewer: Larner · 2007-10-19 13:40:55
Little Bilbo Gamgee-Gardner could name eight of the Nine Walkers. Why
is it so difficult to remember Boromir?
Sam confronts his own reluctance to think about the tall Gondorian,
and accepts that in the end he played a crucial part in the quest in
spite of his fall.
It is wonderful when Ann turns her creativity to Hobbits after so much
time spent in Gondor and Rohan, and this story is most thoughtfully done.
Title: Under the Eyes of the Evenstar · Author: Raksha the Demon ·
Genres: Drama: Other Fixed-Length Ficlet · ID: 680
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke · 2007-10-19 14:09:28
I really like this character of Arwen. Here she is shown as proud as
Boromir usually is - a fresh and true way of seeing her, to my eyes.
But her pride, umbrage and ambition are believable transformed to
compassion by the end of the piece - an difficult accomplishment in
short works. Well done: a short piece with action, arc, and growth in
Title: Fate and Destiny · Author: pippinfan88 · Races: Hobbits:
Pre-Quest · ID: 300
Reviewer: PipMer · 2007-10-19 17:45:47
This tale takes place after the author's work 'Merry's Graduation'. It
centers around a wonderful, loveable OC named Degger Greenhill. He is
an orphan that has been taken in by the Tooks, and he is very good
friends with both Pippin and Merry. This follows his journey from
servant to member of the family, and it is delightful. Pippinfan does
a wonderful job of fleshing out her characters, especially Degger,
Pippin, and Paladin.
Title: Father and Son · Author: Istarnie · Genres: Drama: Second Age
or Earlier · ID: 718
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon · 2007-10-19 18:43:15
Istarnie is one of the most Tolkienesque fanfic writers I've seen in
Silmarillion fanfic; and I love the way she characterises Feanor and
his firstborn in this intense vignette. I could really feel Feanor's
mingled anger and grief and bitterness.
Title: Coda · Author: Imhiriel · Times: Second Age: Drabble · ID: 627
Reviewer: dkpalaska · 2007-10-19 20:05:45
I have long admired Imhiriel's incredible drabbling ability, and I
think this particular example showcases many of her strengths to their
fullest. From title to ending, this touches on subjects that go far
deeper than the surface layer.
The tone is set from the first line, with an utter sense of loss and
grief that echoes right through to the end, where it redoubles when we
find out just what book is being destroyed. The imagery is excellent,
with the beauty of the book (embellished and treasured and obviously
valuable even before author and subject are revealed) representing the
lost beauty of Numenor, also drowned; and such a chilling line
concerning the disappearing words: ["Like blood and ashes."] Without
ever touching directly on what else is floating in the water, Imhiriel
has painted a complete picture for me.
This would be powerful enough in itself, but then we receive the
ultimate points of the drabble: the relationship between Elros and
Maglor, wherein the first King of the Dunedain is granted a precious
and poignant gift from his foster father; and the heartbreaking and
pointed link between events over two Ages apart - Andor is a terrible
["coda"] indeed, and connected by a strain of Feanorians to the first
The entire structure of this piece brings us along steadily until the
full impact breaks on you at the finish. The message and its subtle
undercurrents, the family backstories that are only hinted at here:
they and all the speculation they engender stay with me long after
I've finished the drabble.
Title: Prince of Winter · Author: jastaelf · Genres: Alternate
Universe · ID: 93
Reviewer: Súlriel · 2007-10-19 23:00:11
I find Jastaelf to be one of those amazing authors that manages to
pull out all the stops emotionally. I found her through her Dark Leaf
Saga and have followed along for years and was delighted to find this
one story through the MEFAs that I had missed in my casual reading.
It's still so soon after his rescue and so painful to live these days
with him,but I love to see her little prince growing and starting to
find himself in spite of all he has been through
I also love her characterizations. Usually, no matter how much I like
an author, there will be some tidbit I can pick at or disagree with in
spite of liking the story overall. but not Jasta. Her characters are
deeply layered and real. One thing I especially like is her balance
and contrast of the various cultures. I especially love her original
characters, [Saeros] and the others. She so perfectly portrays the
dark and dangerous elements that I love because they seem to truly be
wild woodland creatures. Not animalistic at all, but truly part of
Arda as Tolkien intended of the Firstborn.
Title: February Bride · Author: Cuthalion · Genres: Romance · ID: 678
Reviewer: Larner · 2007-10-19 23:48:03
Ah--Diamond and Pippin's wedding! They put the dessert before the meal
a bit, perhaps, although to no harm to any or to their reputations;
but now they are fully man and wife, and she is learning to deal with
the memories, hearing for the first time the (movie-verse) memories of
the death of Boromir, the song for Denethor, and the growing madness
of the last ruling Steward of Gondor. And she's finding that Peregrin
Took, Soldier of Gondor, is all she ever wanted and moreso.
Title: Clothes Make the Man · Author: Gandalfs apprentice · Genres:
Humor: Drabble · ID: 625
Reviewer: Tanaqui · 2007-10-19 23:49:45
The theme of the drabble is about appearances and the substance
beneath, and the drabble itself delivers on both counts. Gandalf's
Apprentice has clothed her vivid character sketches of Celeborn,
Aragorn and Galadriel in some gorgeous phrases. I particularly loved
the description of Galadriel as [straight and commanding as a
mallorn]. Well done!
Title: Temptation · Author: Linda hoyland · Times: Mid Third Age: 2851
- 3017 TA: Other Fixed-Length Ficlet · ID: 419
Reviewer: Tanaqui · 2007-10-19 23:54:39
I greatly enjoyed this vignette exploring a slice of Aragorn's life
during his journeys in the South. Linda hoyland presents us with an
Aragorn who is both noble and very human, quickly engaging our
sympathies. The other characters also ring true to their situations.
The bittersweet final few lines are more bitter than sweet only
tempered by the knowledge we have (which Aragorn does not) that his
story ultimately has a happy ending. Overall the writing is crisp and
economical, with well-chosen descriptions that bring the scene vividly
to life with a minimum of words, and it has a plainness and clarity
that perfectly suits the rather harsh nature of the subject matter. In
short, this is exactly the sort of gem I love unearthing during the
MEFAs, while kicking myself that I didn't come across it earlier. Well
Title: Mistaken · Author: Fawsley · Genres: Humor: Drabble · ID: 490
Reviewer: Tanaqui · 2007-10-19 23:55:46
A very cute what-if story, nicely put together. The commonplace nature
of Gandalf's final words after the earlier dramatic build up rounds
the piece off nicely.
Title: The Boatbuilder · Author: DrummerWench · Times: Fourth Age and
Beyond · ID: 536
Reviewer: Larner · 2007-10-19 23:56:58
Exquisite, Drummerwench--truly exquisite. The idea of Cirdan building
boats today and naming this one Elanor and them keeping that name as
they set out on the Road Home--absolutely wonderful! I am in awe.
Title: Knave of Hearts · Author: grey_wonderer · Genres: Humor:
Children · ID: 252
Reviewer: Larner · 2007-10-20 00:13:01
Another hilarious tale of that thief of tarts and hearts, Peregrin
Took, three years old and all too devilishly Tookish. I think Merry
has the right of it--this baby is delightfully wicked and devious, and
Merry is a bit too shrewd for his own good. And poor Frodo and Saradoc
find themselves right in the middle, equally manipulated by little
Pippin and his older cousin Merry.
Title: Where Once My Enemy Stood · Author: Nieriel Raina · Races:
Elves: Fixed-Length Ficlet · ID: 109
Reviewer: Larner · 2007-10-20 00:16:57
Ah, how wonderful to see stubborn Thranduil come to embrace Gimli, at
last giving over his prejudices in the face of the love Gimli has
shown his son.
Title: A Crown of Woodland Flowers · Author: Jay of Lasgalen · Races:
Elves: With Mirkwood Elves · ID: 180
Reviewer: Larner · 2007-10-20 00:26:17
Thranduil and his wife share a most wonderful begetting day, and we
learn how it was that Thranduil came to wear ever a crown of flowers
Marvelous moment of peace for one who will know much of threat and war
in the future.
Title: Gone Fishin' · Author: Aranel Took · Times: Late Third Age:
3018-3022 TA: Other Fixed-Length Ficlet · ID: 322
Reviewer: Larner · 2007-10-20 00:28:20
Yes, in fishing Aragorn can recapture the freedom of being Strider
once more, a needed gift.
Lovely images of stolen moments of peace and oneness with nature.
Title: Family Jewels · Author: Raksha the Demon · Genres: Drama: Other
Fixed-Length Ficlet · ID: 464
Reviewer: Larner · 2007-10-20 00:33:30
Faramir has chosen a different way for himself and his children, and
looking on them he no longer is stirred by the oath of Feanor as he
once was. And he has learned the importance of one act Feanor bound
himself and his sons against--Faramir knows the restorative powers of
Lovely images of peace after the war, and seeing that the fruits of
what went before are well worth the labor and dangers he survived.
Title: Morocet's return · Author: Fawsley · Genres: Alternate
Universe: Gondor or Rohan · ID: 650
Reviewer: stefaniab · 2007-10-20 05:04:15
The King of Gondor has been kidnapped by the evil pirate Morocet and
Faramir must ransom him with gold from the King's private stash. This
brief AU tale hints at a darker, slashier side, if that's how you want
to interpret it. The ending does have a literally sweet twist.
Title: The Northmen · Author: SheBit · Times: Fourth Age and Beyond:
Drabble · ID: 451
Reviewer: stefaniab · 2007-10-20 05:41:38
Not everyone wants to live where the climate is warm and no frost ever
touches the ground. Shebit's Northmen are such a lot, reminding their
Gondorian cousins that cold climes breed hot blooded men and
full-bodied beer. Just ask the hardy New Englanders, whose tough and
sturdy life style Shebit's Northmen made me recall with some nostalgia.
Title: Gentlemen's Night Out · Author: Oshun · Genres: Humor: Gondor
or Rohan · ID: 181
Reviewer: stefaniab · 2007-10-20 08:53:28
Oh, "Gentlemen's Night Out" is naughty, not only in its subject matter
but also the way it skewers both Tolkien's LACE and the many notions
of sexuality in Arda that pervade fanon. Oshun portrays Legolas as
quite the randy dandy. He's is quite, ahem, catholic, in his hearty
tastes. Friends Elladan and Elrohir seem to have the same appetites
but much less of a penchant to talk about them. Young Echirion of
Gondor, narrator of the story, is quite naive by comparison.
As someone who has been criticized for writing brothels into her
landscapes of Minas Tirith, I heartily cheer Oshun's choice of
supplying the weary soldiers on the Field of Cormallen with their very
own camp followers. However, this detail and some of the sexual
bantering might not be to every reader's taste. However, "Gentlemen's
Night Out" certainly was to my taste.
Title: Conversion · Author: Pentangle · Genres: Drama: With Aragorn ·
Reviewer: agape4gondor · 2007-10-20 14:30:09
Excellent tale! Though I absolutely adore Denethor and had to swallow
a couple times over the inuendos of a harsh ruler... still I had to
read on, for I immediately grew to love your main character.
His courage and humility in the face of such devastation - not only to
those he cherished, but in the end to his village... well, this is a
sad and wondrous tale and well worth the read.
Title: Waiting By the Water · Author: Linaewen · Genres: Drama: With
Aragorn · ID: 395
Reviewer: agape4gondor · 2007-10-20 14:42:50
Oh my goodness! *sits back and sighs heavily* You have such a way with
words. Your descriptions are appropriate and just enough to give
flavor to the tale, but not bog your reader down in too many details.
Your sense of peace in this tale is beautiful - especially since the
beginning is taut with unexplained waiting. Aragorn is perfect! I
could see the man, waiting by the river, perhaps with Gimli and
Legolas standing just far enough away to protect him, yet far enough
away to give him his privacy.
Aragorn's memory of that last day with Boromir is well written. Enough
detail is given to 'know' the moment he remembers, but not too much
that the reader thinks it is a 'word for word' reprise of the book. It
is not. I loved the fact that the boat seems to 'sense' Aragorn and
goes willingly to him. I loved Aragorn's greeting. It is spontaneous,
joy-filled, and perfect.
My favorite part is Aragorn's speculations as to why it has taken
Boromir so long to reach him. That he might have stopped, as a living
being, to see Minas Tirith once again, That he might have stopped to
farewell kin (dear Faramir)... and that he stopped now to farewell his
liege lord one more time before going to his destiny.
Absolutely gorgeous vignette. Again, I sit back and sigh at the beauty
and the peace of the death and farewells of this glorious
Captain-General of Gondor.
Title: Kindred Spirits · Author: Cathleen · Genres: Drama: The
Fellowship · ID: 377
Reviewer: PipMer · 2007-10-20 16:56:11
What a heart-breaking and angsty little tale. My heart went out to
Boromir and Faramir in this, especially little Faramir, who so needed
to be protected from his abusive father. The portrayal of Denethor was
very eerie; movie-Denethor could easily have been this person. It
broke my heart to see the difference between Pippin's upbringing and
Boromir's. Boromir deserved so much more.
Well done, Cathleen.
Title: Not an Ordinary Day · Author: nau_tika · Genres: Drama: The
Fellowship · ID: 737
Reviewer: PipMer · 2007-10-20 17:13:34
This was both tender, and funny at the same time! I enjoy stories
where Pippin's cheerfulness is tempered with seriousness, even though
he regains his cheerfulness at the end.
Title: Testaments of the Past · Author: Dreamflower/Gryffinjack
CoAuthors · Races: Hobbits: Post-Grey Havens · ID: 549
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon · 2007-10-21 14:43:21
Thoughfully written and beautifully realized, this is a treasure-box
of a story in every respect.
After Frodo's departure over the Sea, his friends find a strongbox in
Bag End containing momentoes of his life; and remember various
experiences connected to some of the items. The authors also include
photos of the items; and further explanations in their author's notes.
The detail in the documents of Primula and Drogo's marriage and
Bilbo's adoption of Frodo is particularly exquisite and makes the
story even more believable.
A lovely effort that reminds us all of the significance of memories
great and small from a pivotal life in Middle-earth. Highly
recommended to all hobbit-fans!