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MEFA Reviews for Sunday, October 12, 2008 (Part One)

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  • annmarwalk
    Title: Somewhere I Have Never Traveled · Author: Fiondil · Times: Fourth Age and Beyond · ID: 578 Reviewer: Dreamflower · 2008-10-12 03:26:36 I love
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 12, 2008
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      Title: Somewhere I Have Never Traveled · Author: Fiondil · Times:
      Fourth Age and Beyond · ID: 578
      Reviewer: Dreamflower · 2008-10-12 03:26:36
      I love Arwen's delightfully unexpected response to her circumstances.
      Both funny, and in a way, rather realistic, psychologically speaking...

      Title: The Wanderer · Author: Lackwit · Genres: Adventure: Incomplete
      · ID: 627
      Reviewer: Dreamflower · 2008-10-12 03:27:08
      This is a marvelous premise--I look forward to more of this story.
      It's always fund to read fic that draws on themes and motifs from
      other mythologies.

      Title: If You Could See What I Hear · Author: Cathleen · Times: Mid
      Third Age: Eriador · ID: 614
      Reviewer: Dreamflower · 2008-10-12 03:28:14
      I am always a bit ambivalent when I review a story that I beta'd--it's
      hard to know if I'm not a bit biased, and it's hard to say how others
      will feel about it. But I enjoyed working on this story, which
      features some of Cathleen's favorites: Tulip, the knitted pig; little
      Pippin; and the Took faerie ancestry. She blends these into an
      interesting story that is both fluffy and angsty, and has a bit of
      mystery as well. I think that she accomplished a good deal with this
      story!

      Title: My Precious · Author: SheBit · Genres: Romance: Drabbles · ID: 14
      Reviewer: Dreamflower · 2008-10-12 03:29:19
      This is both powerful and squicky at the same time, and yet dare I say
      it, in a good way? By that I mean that it sheds some light on the
      character of Grima, and explains his willingness to sell out his
      country and yet it does not shy away from his perverted nature.

      Title: Five Things that Never Happened to Serinde of Dol Amroth ·
      Author: SurgicalSteel · Genres: Alternate Universe: Angst/Tragedy ·
      ID: 222
      Reviewer: Dreamflower · 2008-10-12 03:31:09
      SurgicalSteel's OC Serinde has a large following for an OC, probably
      because she is written so realistically. These AUs of things that
      ["never happened"] to her are intriguing and rather chilling for the
      most part. I think the saddest was the first one.

      Beautiful and thought provoking. Not many are willing to walk down the
      AU road with their OCs. But SS does it masterfully.

      Title: A Maid Waiting · Author: Larner · Genres: Romance: Gondor · ID: 691
      Reviewer: Dreamflower · 2008-10-12 03:31:37
      Spoilers!
      In this story, Larner once more displays her remarkable ability to
      create memorable OCs. Both Systerian and Ivornil are engaging and
      believable, developing from the rather callow young people who arrive
      at Elessar's court into more thoughtful ones over the course of the
      story, due to their exposure to the King and his friends. A very
      lovely and tidy little tale!

      Title: Feet That Wander · Author: Linaewen · Races: Cross-Cultural ·
      ID: 576
      Reviewer: Dreamflower · 2008-10-12 03:32:11
      What a wonderful and very plausible idea! Tom Bombadil is so
      under-utilized in fanfic, but this is a not unlikely scenario. I can
      certainly see that particular wanderer lost on the borders of his country.

      Furthermore, the author has captured the cadence of his speech very
      well; not an easy thing to do!

      Title: The Onion Riddle · Author: Branwyn (Lady Branwyn) · Races:
      Cross-Cultural: Post-Ring War · ID: 13
      Reviewer: Dreamflower · 2008-10-12 03:32:37
      LOL! Poor Beregond! How embarassing. Of course all the clues are there
      if one knows that there is something to have a clue to! Both funny and
      clever!

      Title: Least Expected · Author: Imhiriel · Genres: Alternate Universe:
      Drabbles · ID: 512
      Reviewer: Nath · 2008-10-12 08:49:29
      A chillingly AU version of the entry of the Grey Company into Rohan.
      While the moment in this drabble is already heartrending by itself,
      especially to fans of Halbarad, the true horror of this version of
      events only becomes obvious when you start thinking about what led to
      this moment, and what the consequences on the larger tale will be.
      There is a lot of food for thought in this wonderfully dark piece of
      writing.

      Title: Too Many Rangers · Author: Larner · Races: Hobbits · ID: 116
      Reviewer: Nath · 2008-10-12 09:23:00
      Spoilers!
      A clever and light-hearted look at - I won't say `reconciling' or
      `combining', as it's more of a collision - the final version of this
      scene with one of the earlier draft versions as written in HoME.

      While the events of the story attempt to play out as they should, [too
      many Rangers] drive poor Mr. Butterbur slightly batty, and one can
      only feel for him in shared dizziness as Trotter shifts about and
      fails to keep his shape yet again.

      There are some wonderfully snarky moments, both between Trotter and
      Strider, and between them and the other characters. ["But to give my
      name to--to this miserable example of Hobbitry! I ask you!"] to name
      but one.

      All in all, the rather unlikely Trotter works rather well in this
      crossover with, well, himself, I guess.

      Finally, this story should really carry a `coffee and cats' warning,
      as the unwary reader or their pets could come to harm from nasally
      expelled liquids if caught by a funny turn of phrase at the wrong moment.

      Title: Celevon a Mallen · Author: Tanaqui · Genres: Romance: Other
      Fixed-Length Ficlets · ID: 279
      Reviewer: Larner · 2008-10-12 09:41:17
      Still another wonderful drabble series, this of significant moments
      between the two who became Lord and Lady of Lorien. A beautiful series
      with a poignant ending. Do give it a read!

      Title: Estel I Was Called · Author: Marta · Genres: Drama: Featuring
      Aragorn · ID: 351
      Reviewer: Nath · 2008-10-12 10:53:06
      Spoilers!
      After finding out his identity and leaving Rivendell to live among his
      own people, young Aragorn has to adapt to his new environment, and if
      he isn't to endanger the Dunedain while doing so, he needs to do it
      fast. Halbarad's solid and pragmatic approach, tough but laced with
      understanding of his cousin's situation and feelings, is just what
      Aragorn needs here, both to stop him feeling sorry for himself and to
      help him settle in his new home. And of course, a rather important
      point, Halbarad finds a solution for what Aragorn should be called
      without his name betraying his identity.

      The first layer of the story examines the relation between Aragorn and
      Halbarad, but at the same time there are many glimpses of a wider
      history, both for these two and for the backstory, as well as details
      of Dunedain culture that help to give depth to this story.

      A well-written and well-characterised addition to the all-too-small
      niche of Aragorn-Halbarad friendship stories.

      Title: The King's Time · Author: Larner · Genres: Drama: Final
      Partings · ID: 333
      Reviewer: Nath · 2008-10-12 12:35:10
      Spoilers!
      This story was written in response to my birthday card prompt, `time',
      and that is what one notices immediately in the first paragraph: time,
      and the many ways of measuring its passage that are worked into the
      story. While such a listing of time pieces could easily become
      contrived and overwrought, here it ties into Aragorn's sense of time
      passing, ticking away, and seems no more than a logical representation
      of his naturally heightened awareness of time in this, his last night
      in life.
      What stands out, apart from the more general theme of `time', is that,
      while there is a melancholy tone to Aragorn's thoughts, he is fully at
      peace with the gift of Men and the end of his own time, and in fact
      looks forward to meeting again those who have gone before him. He has
      faith in the son he raised to follow in his footsteps, and is
      confident that he is leaving his heritage in good hands.
      An elegant and sensitive handling of Tolkien's core theme of mortality.

      Title: With Hope and Without Hope · Author: docmon · Genres:
      Adventure: Incomplete · ID: 466
      Reviewer: Michelle · 2008-10-12 13:16:48
      This could have been nothing more than the typical storyline of the
      fellowship gets captured by orcs and they are tortured for the rest of
      the story. Fortunately, docmon manages to avoid a simple unfolding of
      that storyline, but instead writes an engaging AU-tale by changing one
      single fact that in the end has big ramification while still wrapping
      up the story up with a chapter that places all characters on their
      respective places on Tolkien`s chessboard.

      I found that docmon has a real knack for writing wizards – both
      Gandalf and Saruman are superbly captured (and they are by no means
      easy characters to write) and chapter 16, which evolves around the
      confrontation between Gandalf and Saruman is probably the high point
      of the story (so much good dialogue to be found here!). Still, my
      favourite part of the tale was Aragorn`s and Pippin`s storyline and
      while I`m not much of a hobbit fan, I was very much impressed by
      Pippin`s journey and the reversal of roles between Aragorn (the strong
      and responsible ranger) and Pippin (the young and reckless hobbit). It
      made me see potential in Pippin I had never noticed before.

      Title: Choosing · Author: docmon · Genres: Drama · ID: 473
      Reviewer: crowdaughter · 2008-10-12 14:18:59
      Spoilers!
      Three great vignettes, showing the reasoning why three of the
      messengers who would later be among the nine walkers were chosen. I
      love the way the reasoning is related to the particular way of
      thinking of the three leaders, and how it shows the assets the three
      chosen warriors had in their view. the most interesting of these
      reasonings are those of Denethor. The idea that he clearly perceived
      the reasons for the dreams Boromir came to Rivendell to ask about, and
      chose Boromir in hiopes that he might return with the weapon to
      resolve Gondor's need, is striking.

      Thank you for this interesting glimpse at the ideas behind choosing
      these three messengers!

      Title: Captain of Mordor · Author: draylon · Times: Late Third Age ·
      ID: 626
      Reviewer: crowdaughter · 2008-10-12 14:45:45
      Spoilers!
      Very strange story, but well told. I like slash, especially unusual
      slash tales, but this one took me unawares. I like the idea of a more
      humanized Orc, though, and the way you show us that Orc as someone who
      one can nearly come to like, was well done, too.

      Interesting.

      Title: The Myth of the One Ring's Power · Author: Dreamflower ·
      Genres: Non-Fiction · ID: 532
      Reviewer: crowdaughter · 2008-10-12 14:54:38
      A very interesting essay, and very well thought out. I love the clear
      arguments, and also the conclusion. Well done!

      Title: Five Hair Care Tips for Rohirrim · Author: EdorasLass · Genres:
      Humor · ID: 71
      Reviewer: crowdaughter · 2008-10-12 15:06:48
      Spoilers!
      Wonderful, very funny read, and this needs a severe beverage warning.
      The idea thatv the proud Rohirrim needs to be encouraged that grooming
      indeed is something not only fit for horses is absolutely great. Thank
      you for writing and sharing! :)

      Title: Unwilling · Author: Elena Tiriel · Races: Elves: Drabbles · ID: 64
      Reviewer: crowdaughter · 2008-10-12 15:35:26
      What a powerful, compelling drabble, capturing in but a few words the
      viewpoint of the Avari, and the fate of a faded elf. This is
      marvelous, and will stay with me for a long time. Thank you for
      writing and sharing!

      Title: U elyë, Ar-Pharazôn · Author: Elitihien · Times: Second and
      Early Third Age · ID: 486
      Reviewer: crowdaughter · 2008-10-12 15:47:47
      Spoilers!
      Powerful and rich images, and a thoughtful end. The doom of
      Ar-Pharazon has rarely been told more compelling, and more
      breathtaking. Thank you for writing and sharing!

      Title: Spaces in the Heart · Author: Keiliss · Races: Elves: House of
      Elrond · ID: 251
      Reviewer: Larner · 2008-10-12 18:04:29
      Spoilers!
      What a wonderful first meeting between these two who in time will
      become partners in the defense of Middle Earth, and co-mentors of
      those Men who will follow the Elves as stewards of the mortal lands!
      Descriptions are clear and inviting; reactions realistic. Well written
      indeed!

      Title: PROPHECY: Changing the Future · Author: Fiondil · Genres: Humor
      · ID: 11
      Reviewer: Larner · 2008-10-12 18:15:35
      Spoilers!
      Ah, when Tolkien's own papers indicate how changes were made from
      original concept to apparently final form, and how some of those
      changed even more after publication of the work that OUGHT to be seen
      as final, it's so much fun to imagine how the conflicts in wording,
      naming, or imagery might have come about! This look at how Elros's
      closest folk might have changed some wording in Namo's Second Prophecy
      to make it appear Men might have a bigger part after the remaking of
      the world than given in those copies of that prophecy kept by Elves,
      and at the reactions of Mandos himself as well as that of the Creator
      is delightful! Nice catch there as well as providing a means to
      appreciate the different endings to the same prophecy! Thanks, Fiondil.

      Title: The Last Stand · Author: Rhapsody · Times: First Age and Prior
      · ID: 82
      Reviewer: Larner · 2008-10-12 18:35:15
      I\\\'ve never had much interest in the battles of the Elves; but this
      story has an immediacy that drew me into it from the start and left me
      caring deeply for all involved. To learn that for all the treachery
      Men can be subject to, they can also be true as any of the highest
      among Elves would be a great lesson to learn.

      Well told and engaging--and both heartbreaking and hopeful.

      Title: Sam's Crosswise Verse · Author: Elanor Gardner · Genres: Drama:
      Featuring Frodo or Sam · ID: 519
      Reviewer: Larner · 2008-10-12 19:16:55
      Spoilers!
      I must wonder why this marvelous tale has not received more feedback.
      Do folk not read Frodo and Sam stories unless they're written by
      prescribed authors or something?

      This tale of a particular rhyme being used as a code to indicate a
      perceived disagreement ought to be discussed and dealt with is just so
      perfect; and I love how much of the imagery I find myself invoking
      when I write of these two is reflected here with even more perfect
      descriptions to add to it all. The thought of the olfactory memories
      of a hot, muggy day in the Shire visiting with the tinker as an
      alternative to a less-that-desirable visit with Lobelia is just so
      wonderful! [Leather and ink and cinnamon] clinging about Sam that way,
      and then a ghost of them evoked there in that place--perhaps that one
      memory of a scent was enough to allow Sam to go on to do what he
      needed to do, now that he'd made the determination he had about his
      beloved Master; but I was so touched that he had to try that doggerel
      in an last-ditch attempt to get a physical response to confirm the
      hint given by the illusory scent of cinnamon....

      Oh, oh--so well worth a read, so poetical in its writing, so grievous
      and touching and somehow heartening for those of us who know Sam was
      wrong in his current perception of the situation. And I hope that
      Frodo found a way to himself find rhymes to the word for reassurance's
      sake once they were in "civilized places" again.

      Title: The Dooming of Small Hands · Author: Thundera Tiger · Times:
      Late Third Age · ID: 639
      Reviewer: Larner · 2008-10-12 19:21:37
      Spoilers!
      Had others not already nominated this one, I would have. Ah, what a
      perception to have--that this burden must be borne by such a one who'd
      already suffered so much and would suffer yet more ere the end!

      But who else could have done it if not the one who in the end said, "I
      shall take it, though I do not know the way"?

      Thundera Tiger has written such a poignant tale here, and so very well
      and worthily! Thank you for it!
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