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Msg# 8428

MEFA Reviews for November 19, 2007 (Part 1) Posted by Ann November 19, 2007 - 4:10:36 Topic ID# 8428
Title: Celeborn's Trees Author: Isabeau of Greenlea Races: Elves:
Fixed-Length Ficlet ID: 514
Reviewer: Tanaqui 2007-11-10 09:25:56
This is a lovely drabble about Galadriel and Celeborn, showing both
the tensions in relationship and how they resolve them. Isabeau
perfectly captures the characters of both Noldor and Sindar here, and
shows Celeborn's strength, wisdom and worth to be the husband of a
powerful Elf like Galadriel. His words to Galadriel at the end are
delightful. Well done!

Title: Fell Wisdom Author: Marta Times: Late Third Age: 3018-3022
TA: General Drabble ID: 323
Reviewer: Tanaqui 2007-11-10 09:40:44
In this drabble, Marta has created a very powerful picture of about
Theoden's hopes and doubts before the Battle of Helm's Deep. There is
a relentlessness to the shape of the drabble and the phrasing that
effectively shows how Theoden's thoughts circle around to return to
previous, despairing patterns. A very nice study of a troubled mind.
Well done!

Title: Gone Fishin' Author: Aranel Took Times: Late Third Age:
3018-3022 TA: Other Fixed-Length Ficlet ID: 322
Reviewer: Tanaqui 2007-11-10 10:26:50
This is a lovely little vignette of Aragorn dealing with the stresses
and strains of his new responsibilities. Aranel Took nicely balances
different moods: Aragorn's frustration, the soothing casting of the
line, and the humour of his perception of the reactions of those
around him. Well done.

Title: The Ground Portends Author: Thevina Finduilas Races:
Dwarves ID: 638
Reviewer: Bodkin 2007-11-10 10:52:59
Poor Gimli - not only endless hours on horseback, but his nose in
Eomer's back! Good thing that dwarves can endure extreme discomfort. I
like his discussion with Legolas. And the look at gallant Eowyn.
(Gimli has a kind heart - and a courtier's nature.)

Title: The Gates Author: Isabeau of Greenlea Races: Dwarves ID: 70
Reviewer: Bodkin 2007-11-10 10:59:47
This is a lovely story. I thoroughly enjoy Gimli stories anyway - they
are like jewels in their rarity - and this has such a delightful
elaboration of dwarven culture and relationships. The interaction
between Gimli and Snorri is a pleasure to read. It's good to see the
Gimli is valued among his own people for the skills he has in great
quantity. For Snorri and Eyvdis to decide to follow him to Aglarond
says a lot about Gimli's status - and his reaction speaks well of his
modesty. Most enjoyable.

Title: What Was That Job Description? Author: Larner Genres:
Crossover ID: 523
Reviewer: Bodkin 2007-11-10 11:03:23
Now, if ever there was a wizard you wouldn't want to have turn up at
your court ... I think he should be sent off with the elves for a
while. Might learn a thing or two! Most amusing.

Title: A Suitable Tribute Author: EdorasLass Genres: Drama ID: 474
Reviewer: Bodkin 2007-11-10 11:10:11
A tribute that is undoubtedly a great sacrifice for the girl ... but
I'm left wondering what on Middle-earth Aragorn would find himself
doing with her braid. After he had accepted it with due appreciation,
as I'm sure he would.

Title: Sea Food Author: annmarwalk Genres: Humor: Children ID: 53
Reviewer: Bodkin 2007-11-10 11:20:43
Beginning to get a Ranger's eye for the edible, perhaps - but he's not
yet made the association between live creatures and dinner. Faramir is
so sweet here. And so is Boromir - who is quite happy to eat fish
provided by others. Kind Imrahil, letting them get away with such
squeamishness. It's great to see the three of them having so much fun
on a early Dol Amroth morning, behaving in a way that Denethor would
doubtless see as unsuitable. Faramir's wish to the crabs for a
profitable life - charming. I found this story to be delightful.

Title: Web of Treason Author: Linda hoyland Times: Fourth Age and
Beyond: Gondor or Rohan ID: 124
Reviewer: Bodkin 2007-11-10 11:26:38
I was so relieved that there was a happy outcome to this story - it
looked along the way as if there might well not be! I really like
Elbeth, who took on a delightfully rounded nature as a determined and
not-always-perfect child. I did find myself wanting to punch assorted
people on the nose - Aragorn, for failing to see what Faramir had
endured to save him - yes, I know he was hurt, but that was just plain
stupid of him. Imrahil, for another, for immediately thinking the
worst of his nephew and not acknowledging how actions - getting out
there and saving the king - speak much louder than any number of
helpless laments. This is a very dramatic story, with lots of
suffering along the way - and I'm very pleased it turned out as it did!

Title: The Tenant from Staddle Author: Larner Races:
Cross-Cultural: Incomplete ID: 408
Reviewer: Bodkin 2007-11-10 11:33:13
The combination of stories here - Denra and Alvric, Delphinium and her
family of Bracegirdles, the Rangers, the farming family, and, of
course, over it all, the story of Frodo's failing health and the worry
all those who understand him feel about his achievements and his
weaknesses - make for a complex web of activities. It was interesting
seeing how the Bracegirdles - some of them - managed to figure out
what nobody would actually come out and tell them. (How does Frodo
think he's going to keep it all secret - unless he stops hobbits going
out of the Shire?) And watching Bartolo struggle with his prejudice is
entertaining - his oldest son seems to have inherited a fair bit of
Baggins and sees further into a brick wall that his old man. A most
enjoyable story.

Title: Thoughts in the Night Author: Pearl Took Races: Hobbits:
Hurt/Comfort ID: 479
Reviewer: Bodkin 2007-11-10 11:41:56
Parsow is going to be good at his profession - he has a good eye for
what is important, combined with a lot of common sense. (I like seeing
how his character has developed over the stories that feature him.)

Athelas is really helpful - it seems to relieve the spirit as well as
having actual curative properties. And Pippin needed relieving, poor
lad! The siege has been a bit much for him. And, of course, it will do
Merry a lot of good to see Pippin - and Pippin a lot of good to see
Merry awake and looking better.

Title: Letting Go Author: Ellie Times: First Age and Prior ID: 790
Reviewer: Bodkin 2007-11-10 11:46:58
Yes ... Ingwe would have found it very hard to send out his people to
fight and die in Middle-earth while staying behind in the Blessed
Realm. He would have looked on it as betrayal, perhaps, and cowardice.
Hardly the action of a king. But then, if the Valar didn't want him to
go, he couldn't have gone against them.

I'm glad Mrs Ingwe managed to offer him consolation - and shared his
watch over their extended family.

Title: The Case of the Purloined Mushrooms Author: Inkling Genres:
Mystery ID: 298
Reviewer: Marta 2007-11-10 13:31:37
Oh, this was a fun read for a Saturday morning. Nice mix of intrigue
and humor - you had me reading to the end and smiling throughout. A
story could certainly do less.

Title: Endings and Beginnings Author: Tanaqui Times: Second Age:
Drabble ID: 726
Reviewer: Marta 2007-11-10 13:36:58
I don't know much about Star Gate: Atlantis, but Tanaqui made this
drabble work even for someone who didn't know the other fandom in this
crossover. "Endings and Beginnings" effectively shows the similarities
between the Faithful of Numenor and a similar group of refugees in
SGA, and the commonalities in the two situations only serve to
complement each other. It's exactly how a crossover should work, and
Tanaqui does it all in 100 words - a laudable accomplishment in
itself. Nice work.

Title: The Voices of Silence Author: Rhapsody Times: Multi-Age:
Fixed-Length Ficlet ID: 172
Reviewer: Marta 2007-11-10 20:41:06
This is a really creative set of gapfillers, with each drabble
capturing some aspect of the Finwean's character that was
illuminating. And it was understandable for a non-Silmfic reader like
me. I enjoyed this, Rhapsody!

Title: The spaces between two silences Author: illyria-pffyffin
Genres: Drama: With Aragorn ID: 677
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2007-11-11 01:09:56
This is an exquisite and poetic set of vignettes focussing on the epic
romance of Aragorn and Arwen, from the golden summer in Lorien to the
ceremonial culmination and then the final end.

I loved the description of the couple's entry into Minas Tirith with
such great pageantry and wonderful human touches - Arwen's heartfelt
acceptance of the old woman's homely gift was touching, as was Arwen's
realization of how dearly her happiness was bought from the blood and
lives of Gondor.

Title: Many Guises and Many Names Author: Gandalfs apprentice
Times: Mid Third Age: 2851 - 3017 TA: Other Fixed-Length Ficlet ID: 380
Reviewer: Marta 2007-11-11 01:16:15

Oh, these were great fun! All of Aragorn's many identities shone
through quite well in each of the different drabbles, and they show
off well how you can write so many different genres with such a light
touch. You really do understand Aragorn's character, and that shows
through each word.

One quibble: in the last ficlet you implied it was Arwen who demanded
Aragorn become king of both Gondor and Arnor before the marriage, but
I think in the appendices it's Elrond who sets that condition. This
gave me pause, especially since it's Elrond who's told Gandalf about
the betrothal. My mind worked up a justification for why Gandalf would
have been misled, but it might be worth considering changing.

But regardless, this is a really fine series and I heartily enjoyed
reading it. Any Aragorn fans should enjoy this read.

Title: Night Terrors Author: Tanaqui Times: Mid Third Age: 2851 -
3017 TA: Drabble ID: 752
Reviewer: Marta 2007-11-11 01:20:52

This is a delightful drabble with a lot to commend it. Aragorn's
mangling of names sets him up as a child immediately and is very cute
without being saccharine-sweet at the same time, a reaction that's
surprisingly difficult for fanfic to cause in me. Then there is the
childish insistence that "bathing" in the river is the same as a
proper bath. I really smiled at that, and could completely imagine
Aragorn's impish smile.

But what really made the drabble work for me is the reference to the
story of [the last king and the snowman]. Hilarious, and at the same
time completely tied to canon in a really clever way. It ties the
drabble together nicely, and does a good job of keeping the tone
light. Nice work, Tanaqui!

Title: Freddy and the Thain's Rabbit Author: grey_wonderer Races:
Hobbits ID: 251
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2007-11-11 02:25:54
Every now and then, an OC comes along who can just steal the readers'
hearts without effort. Over the course of several delightful stories
Grey Wonderer's readers have been made acquainted with Errol, Pippin's
childhood friend and stuffed Rabbit.

In this story, Errol makes the acquaintance of Merry's youngest son
Freddy, but there is far more to it than that, and I don't wish to
spoil any of the story!

Freddy once again proves that GW is quite adept at capturing the voice
of a small child, and Pippin proves that though he is a wise and
capable Thain, he is still quite "Pippish" at heart.

We also see that no matter how much time passes, the banter between
Merry and Pippin remains as sharp and funny as ever, with love and
respect underneath.

But most of all, I love Errol in this--he has such a wealth of love
and wisdom and insight and should take his proper place in the
pantheon of beloved Textile Persons, alongside such famous personages
as Winnie the Pooh or the Velveteen Rabbit!

Title: Fate and Destiny Author: pippinfan88 Races: Hobbits:
Pre-Quest ID: 300
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2007-11-11 02:27:55
I've always been intrigued by Pippinfan's OC Degger, who has in
previous stories proven himself a good friend to Merry and Pippin. In
this story, we learn a bit more about him.

The story, set in the Great Smials during the time of Ferumbras III,
proves that there are a lot of family secrets among the Tooks. I truly
like the friendship Pippin shows to Degger, and the efforts that Merry
and Frodo, not to mention Paladin, make on his behalf.

The author has promised to let us know how Degger turns out when he
grows up--I am very much looking forward to finding out.

Title: Observations Author: grey_wonderer Races: Hobbits: Children
ID: 204
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2007-11-11 02:31:43
It's very hard to know what to say about this gem without giving
anything away. Let us say that it is about Brandybuck
determination--both Merry's and Saradoc's--as each of them learn some
very important lessons that they need to learn. And that Frodo is as
wise and insightful an older cousin as ever, even though he no longer
lives at Brandy Hall.

I enjoyed looking at this through Saradoc's POV, and I especially
enjoyed his observations on Tooks and talking, LOL!

This is a truly delightful read, and gives the reader some fascinating
food for thought as well!

Title: Time to Let Go Author: PipMer Races: Hobbits: Post-Grey
Havens ID: 261
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2007-11-11 02:47:31
The author's use of the quotation assigned to her for a challenge
story to describe Sam was very appropriate: Sam was indeed, brave,
wise, hard-working, loving and devoted to his home. I particularly
liked the way she used each characteristic as part of his different
roles in life. It's clear that Elanor is going to miss her father very
much! A very nice character study of Sam.

Title: Force of Nature Author: shirebound Genres: Alternate
Universe: The Shire or Buckland ID: 360
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2007-11-11 02:49:01
This is a very fun story, set within Shirebound's "Quaratined"
universe, in which Aragorn gets to know Frodo and Bilbo before Bilbo
leaves the Shire. This particular tale takes place at least partially
in the Old Forest.

The story has a bit of mystery, some mild danger, and a little
hurt/comfort, all wrapped up with love in Shirebound's gentle style. I
especially like Shirebound's portrayal of a young Halbarad and of her
OC Thalguron--both of whom find themselves enthralled with hobbits!

And I like her interpretation of the Old Forest as well--a very unique
take on it. Yes, I can see the trees reacting that way, responding to
certain hidden aspects of both Frodo's and Aragorn's natures...

Title: The Heir of the Hill Author: Lothithil Times: Mid Third
Age: 2851 - 3017 TA ID: 675
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2007-11-11 02:49:55
There are a multitude of "Frodo's Life with Bilbo" stories out there,
and to stand out from the pack, a story needs something to make it
different--this story *has* that, an unusual take on life in Bag
End--though I don't wish to spoil things. If you are fond of "young
Frodo" stories, I think you will like this one.

Title: South Author: Aliana Times: Fourth Age and Beyond: Gondor
or Rohan ID: 8
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2007-11-11 02:55:20
Wow! This is absolutely breathtaking.

Merry's memories of his time away on the Quest fill his dreams and his
thoughts, and so he makes a journey South, to visit his old friend
Eowyn. His thoughts, his feelings, are palpable. We are shown the ways
in which his time away from the Shire, in the world outside its bounds
has changed him--but not in the usual fashion of angst-ridden memories
of battle, though they are present--but in the longing for old
friends, whose absence in his life is always felt, and in the longing
for the world he once journeyed in--a world which had held marvel as
well as battle.

I love the relationship between Merry and Eowyn shown here, of
comradeship and an understanding of something that only the two of
them will ever know. A beautiful piece.