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Msg# 8375

MEFA Reviews for November 3, 2007 (Part 1) Posted by Ann November 03, 2007 - 6:06:47 Topic ID# 8375
Title: Returning the Favor · Author: cpsings4him · Races: Hobbits:
Post-Ring War · ID: 340
Reviewer: Larner · 2007-10-13 00:42:50
This look by Pippin at Frodo sleeping is very comforting for both us
and the two Hobbits. Well written and thoughtful.

Title: Fell and Fair · Author: Elena Tiriel · Genres: Adventure:
Fixed-Length Ficlet · ID: 526
Reviewer: Súlriel · 2007-10-13 01:54:54

[...two great horseman... unlike all the others] *sigh*. You know
these are my favorite guys!

[2] [perverse sunshine] is such a wonderful, viscerally emotional
phrase. I think there are very few phrase that say as much with so few
words. With the tone so well set, it would be expected that the
following text might fall short, but it does not. It brings tears and
chills with it's portrayal of stark emotion and a dark future.

[They are warriors. They do what they must.]
What a perfect line for these two.

This is such a hard review to write, I find myself totally engrossed
in your snippets and unwilling to stop between chapters to make notes

- flashes of life and love and pain. War, and dread of the
consequences of war. Your drabbles focus these things with hard
punches and incredible intensity. And it seems to me that your talent
lies not so much in what is said, but in what is not said and I think
that's the magic in a drabble. The hints, the shadows, the
implications. It's the ability to use three words to convey fifty.

[Stout-hearted, my people consider me; surely I can withstand one
raised Elven eyebrow?] PRICELESS!! Poor Poor Eorl to face the mirth of
the Twins. A brave man indeed.

[tark-pets] *snicker* I love your Orc's voices and attitudes. Very
well done.

[a loyal steed]. Elena Tiriel. This one is extraordinary. the grief,
the heartfelt pain of loss and the twist. I won't give a spoiler, due
to the recent on-list discussion, - and this is hard because every
drabble in this series is extraordinary - but this one has that extra
something special. Of really being in the head and heart of the point
of view character.

in your notes you say [I hope to view the historical events (canon or
imagined) described in this series through very intimate, personal
lenses, to make them more understandable on a human scale.] I will
say, that in my opinion, you do that and more. I can't imagine that
anyone can read this series and not be moved.

You know how much I love these two guys and I thank you from the
bottom of my heart for these glimpse of them, both through others eyes
and through their own thoughts. I know this has been in progress for a
long time, but, at least in my opinion, it's been well worth it the
wait. This remains one of my favorite re-reads.

Title: Despair · Author: Silivren Tinu · Genres: Drama: The Fellowship
· ID: 171
Reviewer: White Wolf · 2007-10-13 01:58:27
The scene from the movie played in my head, as I read the argument
between Aragorn and Boromir. I really felt sorry for Boromir (here and
in the movie), because he just couldn't see that the Ring was
corrupting him little by little so that he ended up truly believing
having it would save Gondor. And as we all know all too well, that was
the same thing that corrupted Isildur.

Bless Legolas for recognizing that something needed to be done and for
taking the initiative by trying to reason with Boromir. I like the way
he This lets the man see into the depths of himself through his eyes
and share his burden of living under shadow. I think that as much as
anything would have effected Boromir. Too bad it didn't change his
mind. Of course, the Ring saw to that.

I like that Legolas was able to tell Aragorn that the Ring was trying
to influence him, too. Even though it caused Aragorn some worry, it
had to be comforting to the elf to have someone like that to share
with. We tend to think of elves as being impervious to the same
temptations as mortals, but that is not always the case. I'm sure
Aragorn feels good knowing that Legolas can come to him with his troubles.

This is is definitely a good read.

Title: The End of Dark Days · Author: annmarwalk/EdorasLass CoAuthors
· Genres: Drama: Minas Tirith · ID: 56
Reviewer: Larner · 2007-10-13 02:59:55
Together Annmarwalk and Edoraslass have crafted another story
containing both Mags the cook and Nanny, who cared for Faramir and
Boromir as children. Coming to Minas Tirith in the wake of the battles
to see her wounded husband and son, Nanny learns more about what
happened, and sees for herself the devastation left in the wake of the

Alas for Denethor's loss; but now Nanny looks forward to following her
lamb's strengthening health and love life herself.

Very enjoyable, and the vivid descriptions of the city in the wake of
the war mirror reality very well.

Title: At the Sign of the Prancing Pony · Author: Marta · Races:
Cross-Cultural: Drabble · ID: 163
Reviewer: Larner · 2007-10-13 03:02:47
Ah! So THIS was how Nob came to work at the Prancing Pony! And a
wonderful response to an interesting challenge, putting disparate
elements together here.

Title: Measures of Time · Author: Raksha the Demon · Genres: Romance:
Gondor · ID: 50
Reviewer: Linda hoyland · 2007-10-13 03:09:16
It must have been hard for Eowyn that despite being much younger than
Faramir, she would age more quickly. I think even without the blood of
Numenor, many women might idenify with the pangs of sadness for lost
youth that Eoyn experiences while watching Faramir dancing with their
Faramir,though is an understanding husband and knows how to make Eoyn
feel better. I also liked the impled closesness of the King's and
Steward's familes here.
A bittersweet, touching ficlet which strikes a chord in any aging woman.

Title: Candles · Author: Eretria · Genres: Drama: With Merry · ID: 305
Reviewer: Larner · 2007-10-13 03:11:32
This story speaks of fear, and comfort, fear of loss and comfort of
seeing, and the final fear as to what's happening--out there.

Story is Movie-verse, I think; the love between the cousins is timeless.

Title: The Tenant from Staddle · Author: Larner · Races:
Cross-Cultural: Incomplete · ID: 408
Reviewer: Linda hoyland · 2007-10-13 03:12:18
An interesting and well written story which shows the great deeds of
Frodo and Sam through the eyes of ordinary Hobbits. There are some
delightful OCs in this story.

Title: Journey's End · Author: Altariel · Genres: Drama: Ithilien ·
ID: 442
Reviewer: Linda hoyland · 2007-10-13 06:14:13
A truly outstanding story concerning two former Rangers,who I am sure,
I'm not alone in hoping they had the comfortable friendship depicted
in this very enjoyable story,which also features a vividly depicted OC.

Title: A Collection of Sindarin Tanka · Author: juno_magic · Genres:
Poetry · ID: 224
Reviewer: Linda hoyland · 2007-10-13 06:19:42
The writer here shows her considerable skills as a linguist in this
collection of beautiful poems.The illustrations add a further
dimension of beauty to this lovely collection.

Title: Summer Daze · Author: Marta · Genres: Romance: Pre-Ring War ·
ID: 471
Reviewer: annmarwalk · 2007-10-13 11:41:22
A very perceptive character study of Faramir, wrapped in a sensuous
description of his first sexual encounter. After an embarrassing
encounter with a prostitute in Dol Amroth, Faramir ponders his
concepts of "right and wrong" versus what is also normal and natural.
I really like the fact that it's neither a tale of impulsively
overactive hormones, or of a smug older relative deciding "now's the
time". With the cool logic and decision making skills we've come to
associate with him, Faramir takes complete control of his choice to
take this specific step from boyhood to manhood.

The details of Faramir's sexual encounter (and the act of
self-satisfaction that impels him to take this step) are tastefully
described, with just enough detail to add piquancy. We can almost
smell the scent of the sea, taste the ripe strawberries, feel the
brush of silken sheets or warm breath on heated skin. It's a very
lovely addition to the genre of First-Time stories, and one that will
please many an Faramir fan.

Title: Ten Thousand Years · Author: Marta · Times: Late Third Age:
3018-3022 TA · ID: 565
Reviewer: Doc Bushwell · 2007-10-13 12:32:43
This short story says so much in only two scenes. Marta's account of a
conversation between between Boromir and Arwen speaks to themes that
extend well beyond the venue of fan fiction: self-doubt when one
cannot control the events of life and then acceptance of - rather than
struggle against - life's circumstances and the choice to engage in
them fully or eschew them altogether

Marta lends insight into the humanity of two icons of the Lord of the
Rings. Boromir, a man of nobility who is accustomed to command, is
unsettled by the inheritance of Aragorn, the heir of Isildur. Marta
writes his character such that this reader is empathetic to his pride
and doubts. Marta's depiction of Boromir's rumination of what he fears
most (lesser of two evils, perhaps) emphasizes his turmoil in just a
few powerful sentences. Arwen's response likewise resonates with
Boromir's doubts.

Marta is a skilled writer and effectively practices the "show, don't
tell" adage. Her detailing is excellent, but never slows the pace of
the narrative. She describes Imladris vividly and its confusing
architectural intricacies in an economy of words. The intimate setting
of the conversation is easy to visualize: I could feel the warmth of
the hearth and the chill damp from the late autumn rain near the
window. Through the story, she captures Boromir's restiveness to his
thoughtful contemplation through Arwen's words and presence.

Not only are the characters consistent with those described in JRRT's
history, but far more fleshed out in my opinion. When I first read
Lord of the Rings as a young teenager almost forty (!) years ago, I
developed a serious crush on Boromir (I guess I was – how do you say –
a fangurl), so I am gratified with Marta's vision of this noble,
flawed and very human fellow in this and her other works. JRRT's Arwen
left me cold, but Marta's Arwen is far more appealing: warm, wise,
funny, and pensive.

[Ten Thousand Years] is a fine story and highly recommended.

Title: Swan Song · Author: Imhiriel · Genres: Drama: Gondor Drabble ·
ID: 637
Reviewer: Oshun · 2007-10-13 17:29:20
I am also extremely interested in the history of Dol Amroth
(admittedly, on my part, largely due to my obsession with elves, but
the sea plays a large part also). The mood and ambience of the story
is lovely and the level of development of character in such a short
piece is hard to do. It is a pleasure to read a story that takes
infrequently referenced canon and uses it so well.

Title: I Will Comfort Thee · Author: agape4gondor · Genres: Drama: The
Fellowship · ID: 458
Reviewer: obsidianj · 2007-10-13 17:36:03
I haven't encountered this idea before, but it makes sense for Aragorn
to take Faramir to the place where Boromir died. I thought it a nice
touch that all the members of the Fellowship who were involved with
Boromir's death went with them. I liked it that it was not only
healing for Faramir, but that Aragorn also could release his grief for

Title: Not an Ordinary Day · Author: nau_tika · Genres: Drama: The
Fellowship · ID: 737
Reviewer: obsidianj · 2007-10-13 17:38:03
I'm sure nobody involved will forget this day, especially not Pippin
and Legolas. Pippin and Legolas are out practicing archery and somehow
Legolas got hurt. I love the humor in this piece and the developing
relationship between Pippin and Boromir.

Title: Are You Going to Leave Me? · Author: Llinos · Genres: Drama:
With Merry · ID: 142
Reviewer: obsidianj · 2007-10-13 17:39:11
This is a lovely gapfiller from the movies. How did Pippin manage to
get Merry to the houses of healing and how did Merry manage to
convince Aragorn to let him join them at the Battle at the Black Gate.
The solution to the last problem is unique and I don't think to
Aragorn's liking, but he was overruled. The characters ring true and
Eomer, who we know not much about from the books, matches his persona
from the movies.

Title: Changing the Past · Author: mistycracraft · Genres: Alternate
Universe: Incomplete · ID: 639
Reviewer: obsidianj · 2007-10-13 17:52:15
This is an intriguing AU, where Elrohir and Elladan in one timeline
and Aragorn in another can have their fondest wish of changing the
past. The twins can prevent Celebrian from falling into the hands of
the orcs and Argorn gets the chance to save his father. Since this
story is still ongoing, I don't know how it will all end. Changing
these two events, changes the known timeline considerably as anyone
can guess.

I love the well thought out consequences of these changes. The main
characters are now stuck in these new timelines and nothing is as they
are used to. They have to guard their secret that they are from the
future which makes for a very lonely existence. At least the twins
have each other, but Aragorn is another story. I love the
characterizations and the emotional tension which stems from
concealing their knowledge of the future. Aragorn additionally has to
hide who he really is in his new persona. I hope the story will be
updated again soon.

Title: The Days of the King · Author: Randomrattle · Genres: Drama:
With Aragorn · ID: 399
Reviewer: obsidianj · 2007-10-13 17:55:43
This tale about the first years after the Return of the King follows
more the movies than the books. Minas Tirith is much more damaged than
it looked at first glance and had to be evacuated until the dwarves
can fix the damage.The first part of this tale concentrates on the
dwarves and their tireless efforts to save the city. What blew me away
was the description of the Dwarves as a race different from men. They
are not just short men. They have their own distinct customs and
culture. The reader gets glimpses into that culture but just like in
Tolkien the things the reader sees in this story lets you guess that
there is much more to know and discover. The bridge between dwarves
and men and elves are Aragorn, Gimli and Legolas with their deep

The second part of the story concentrates more on the friendship
between Arwen, Aragorn, and Legolas. Here again there is a distinct
difference between elves and men and the differences are not just
immortality and pointy ears. Theirs is a longstanding friendship, but
there is still much to discover and to grow on all sides.

Title: Strange Stars · Author: Jael · Races: Cross-Cultural · ID: 120
Reviewer: Oshun · 2007-10-13 17:59:02
I got a huge kick out of this story for its sheer imaginative scope.
It's a long way from Mirkwood to Harad. Of course, being a fan of her
entire carefully crafted world of Thranduil and Legolas, I got a kick
out of references to elements of that background that are thrown into
the story. (They provide spice for those who, like me, follow the
development of Jael's canon with interest, but in no way interfere
with the enjoyment of the story by readers who are less knowledgeable
of her entire body of work relating to these characters.)

As usual, Jael made me green with envy for her attentiveness to small
details and meticulous plotting. (I am waiting for the day when I stop
simply being jealous and decide to take a bit more care of this nature
in my own work.)

The creation of an entire cultural ambience for the location is such
fun to read. Although it is worlds away from Gondor (so much farther
than the mere physical distance) and more foreign still for our elf,
the writer does not take the cheap and easy path of turning its
inhabitants into incomprehensible villains, but makes them human and
sympathetic, with their own virtues and flaws. Someone else said in
another review that the details reminded her of the book, Memoirs of a
Geisha. I can see that comparison. I also thought of Mary Renault's
Bagoas in The Persian Boy, although, of course, our hero is merely a
talented amateur acting to a bigger purpose. It's a thoroughly
entertaining story with suspense, intrigue, and a healthy subplot of
young love.

Legolas is so attractive, smart and charming too--just an extra bonus
for this reader. I particularly like that you use the events and
experiences to allow your character to learn and grown. The Legolas
who returns is different from the one who left for this
adventure/assignment. The wicked little secret of the author is to
take the subject matter and demonstrate that she is able to tell such
a story without turning her protagonist into a victim. Excellent
story. Great read.

Title: Cophetua · Author: Jael · Genres: Romance · ID: 242
Reviewer: mbumpus_99 · 2007-10-13 18:08:00
I was lucky enough to stumble over this delightful work as one of the
first serialized pieces I was to read in the LoTR fanfic world when it
was still a WIP.

Jael's OFC Sigrid is delightfully well-rounded, as are the other canon
characters she encounters over the course of the story. Sigrid never
forgets her true place in the hierarchy of Thranduil's court, much to
her lover's consternation. Her integration as a mortal into the Elven
society is well-constructed and described, and Jael brings the reader
along to understand all of the emotions Sigrid feels. The twist at the
end was completely unexpected - and yet clearly hinted at in the very
first paragraph of the first chapter.

All in all, I love reading stories where the OCs are as complicated
and imperfect as any canon character - and Jael's Sigrid is an example
of one of the best OCs I've ever read. Thranduil, Galion and even
Legolas stay completely in character. This is a story that I can read
again and again and get almost the same measure of entertainment in
knowing what comes next as I did in that first read of discovery.

Title: At The Foot of the Sarn Gebir · Author: Rabidsamfan · Times:
Late Third Age: 3018-3022 TA · ID: 787
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon · 2007-10-13 18:25:37
Excellent vignette that showcases Sam's resourcefulness and
resilience. I really liked the details of his preparations for the
cooking, and the unfolding of his quiet contentment at being useful in
ways that the other Fellowship members might not think of. And there's
a lovely bit of Sam and Legolas interaction that shows Legolas
understanding and appreciating hobbit priorities.

Well-written, this really says "Sam" to me; and every detail is credible.

Title: Turned Earth · Author: Dana · Genres: Alternate Universe: The
Shire or Buckland · ID: 26
Reviewer: Jael · 2007-10-13 19:43:15
I'm not usually a big fan of Hobbit stories, but I ran across this one
while browsing reviews, and the premise intrigued me. I am so glad I
gave it a try! I read it through in one sitting, even though I had
some pressing chores awaiting me, and I bookmarked it for later
enjoyment -- that's how engaging it is.

This is a very different type of story, no doubt about it. The author
manages to capture the claustrophobic terror of Night of the Living
Dead and the warm feeling of the Shire sections of Lord of the Rings,
and produce a gripping reading experience for Halloween and other
times of the year as well.

The characters, especially Rosie Cotton Gamgee, are very well-written,
and the odd and terrifiying happenings in the Shire, post-Ring War,
are logically explained by BookVerse. You don't see that too often!

If you're tired of the same old-same old, I recommend this story highly.

Title: A Boy and His Lob · Author: Ignoble Bard · Genres: Humor · ID: 162
Reviewer: Jael · 2007-10-13 20:15:57
A Boy and His Lob is yet another giggle-worthy effort from the pen,
er, keyboard of the master humorist.

In this tale, Legolas's adolescent infatuation for a certain visiting
Marchwarden collides with his humanitarian (does this word even apply
to an Elf?) impulse to take in an orphaned spider with an unusual
talent. As you might expect, the results are hilarious -- and very
embarrassing for Mirkwood's young Prince.

I got a kick out of Emo-Legolas resenting the fact that as ["prince"]
he ["must sit at the king's table"] when he would far rather be
chatting up Haldir. Life can be so very cruel sometimes! I found
Thranduil's pragmatic desire for wine and money, even at the price of
his son's dignity, especially amusing. Fortunately, Haldir seems to
share Legolas's tastes in interior decoration -- among other things.

What a great little story!

Title: Concerning the Curious Healing Properties of Soup · Author:
pipkinsweetgrass · Races: Cross-Cultural: The Fellowship · ID: 571
Reviewer: Garnet Took · 2007-10-13 20:44:19
This is a nice story of the fellowship bonding and learning about each
other through the challenges they faced. It also made me real hungry
for a bowl of thick, creamy, chicken soup.

Title: Steward and Thain · Author: agape4gondor · Races:
Cross-Cultural: The Fellowship · ID: 87
Reviewer: Garnet Took · 2007-10-13 21:46:12
Friendship can be built on the smallest commonality sometimes, and
this story proves it. Boromis and Pippin truly are good for each
other. It's said that they only had a short time to be friends.

The epilogue nearly had me in tears.