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Msg# 9464

MEFA Reviews for Wednesday, October 1, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 01, 2008 - 20:35:15 Topic ID# 9464
Title: Home Author: alex_quine Genres: Drama: Featuring Aragorn
ID: 647
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-01 03:02:36
Spoilers!
Interesting story connecting Aragorn to the arrival of the children
Eomer and Eowyn in Edoras. I really like the connection between the
elderly nurse and Thorongil; and how she characterizes the mysterious
Ranger to Theodred - very Rohirric. And good characterisation of the
very young Eowyn.

Title: Another Prometheus Author: Gandalfs apprentice Races:
Cross-Cultural: Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 85
Reviewer: Oshun 2008-10-01 05:45:05
I love this drabble. Tolkien first made Fanor and the Noldor among
his most attractive and interesting characters. They were talented,
driven and interested in understanding the world around them and
questioned the wisdom of the Valar (and, in my opinion, there was
great deal to questionthe judgment of the Valar was not always great
and at times they appallingly fickle or shortsighted and/or reeking of
favoritisim). The Valar as Tolkien paints them remind me somewhat of
the gods and godesses of Greek and Roman mythology. They are not
perfect but this does not prevent them from expecting subservience and
obedience.

Tolkien seemed to want to convince his reader through the characters
he created and the choices they made that science and technology is at
best suspect and in most cases much worse and will almost inevitably
lead to a bad end. In real life, knowledge and technology is in and of
itself amoral. Fanor became the poster child for demonstrating that
the quest for knowledge and independent thinking is the result of
marring of Arda. The question in this drabble amounts to: is it
possible that he got a rotten deal?

This is a big question for a small number of words and it is handled
in a bold and entertaining manner. I would give it an A for content
and an A+ shock value.

Title: The Roses of Imloth Melui Author: Aervir Genres: Drama:
Gondor Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 435
Reviewer: Oshun 2008-10-01 06:26:38
This is a wonderful character study. A fully realized life story
written in a series of drabbles is almost impossible for me to
imagine, but you have done it and done it well. I really love the
seriousness with which you handle this woman, who Tolkien used almost
as a comic foil amidst the aftermath of the ugliest of the Battle of
the Pelennor fields, which although it was a victory, did not ensure
the final victory and held all the ugliest of war within it.

I love her history and her observations. It is wonderful how one sees
her grow and change. The total lack of romanitzing of this woman's
life by the author is a marvelous contrast to Ioreth's conscious
decision to romantize for children her memories of her experiences. I
think perhaps I loved that drabble the most.

If I am not usually drawn to very short stories, I am even less drawn
to stories which are based upon a obvious theme or explicit prompt,
like the roses in this story. They far too often feel forced and
contrived to me. In this case the use of roses is wonderfully executed
and ties the individual ficlets together into a lovely whole.

Highly recommend this story.

Title: Hope comes for Estel Author: stefaniab Genres: Drama:
Featuring Aragorn ID: 622
Reviewer: Claudia 2008-10-01 14:27:48
I normally don't read fics that don't have hobbits in them, but I
generally make exceptions for Aragorn and Faramir, and this was an
outstanding piece that portrays the angst that must have been going
through Aragorn's mind at the beginning of his kingship. I really love
how thoughtful he is and how he recognizes in Faramir such a useful
partner in his new duties! Great job!

Title: Sour Milk Author: Linda Hoyland Genres: Humor: Other
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 521
Reviewer: Claudia 2008-10-01 14:30:07
LOL! I laughed hysterically! The taming of the king by cats! That
ginger cat looks especially wicked!

Title: Promise and Sorrow Author: Virtuella Times: Late Third Age
ID: 607
Reviewer: Claudia 2008-10-01 14:36:03
this story packs quite the emotional punch! What a lovely rambling
about the oft brutal effects of the war!

Title: Gently Held Author: viv Genres: Romance: Other Fixed-Length
Ficlets ID: 6
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-01 14:54:13
A thoroughly romantic and intimate answer to the question of why Arwen
loves Aragorn. She gently rejects the more overt and/or superficial
qualities he possesses as reasons, to hone in on a very personal, very
telling detail.

I love how she lays out in a measured, but obviously warm and loving
tone, all that Aragorn's hands have to tell her about the man; all the
struggles, all the qualities, all the strength and compassion they
reveal to her.

The history of their love, and the long years until it could be
fulfilled, is woven very naturally into the story, so that it doesn't
seem like a mere listing of events in the chronological order, but a
revealing assessment of a love growing in and through hardship to ever
higher appreciation.

I also like the occasional line connecting "back" to an unseen
questioner; it makes this story seem like a very intimate exchange
between Arwen and the reader.

Title: Handy With A Sword Author: Tanaqui Genres: Romance: Other
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 437
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-01 15:13:39
It seems Faramir was completely taken off-guard by just *how*
proficient owyn is with a sword. owyn rightly chose to show him the
error of his ways.

I really like how the drabbles flow one into the other, with cohesion
and with notable progression.

And the last drabble is just a perfect cap for the events, and for the
good humour Faramir shows throughout.

Title: Amara Author: Claudia Genres: Mystery ID: 236
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-01 17:30:39
Spoilers!
A lushly sensuous tale within a tale - Claudia and Faramir tell a
fascinating story of the poetry and mystery of the mysterious
Haradrim, and how the allure of Southron magic almost snared Faramir
and also gave him, it seem, valuable insight and comfort. Faramir's
essential compassion and inner strength are credibly written here.

Title: Tree of Knowledge Author: Nancy Brooke Times: Late Third
Age: Gondor Drabbles ID: 172
Reviewer: stefaniab 2008-10-01 18:08:09
"Tree of Knowledge" is an exceptional drabble that gives us a sad but
chilling glimpse into Denethor's mindset as he sends Boromir off to
the Council of Elrond. I attribute much of the drabble's effectiveness
to Nancy's excellent use of language.

Title: The Clear Ringing Of Silver Trumpets Author: Lithilien
Quicksilver Genres: Drama: Featuring Boromir or Faramir ID: 278
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-01 20:00:41
The great thing about MEFA is the chance to discover new writers and
stories.This story was a great example of discovering work by an
unknown writer. I loved this portrayal of Boromir's last moments and
his conflicting emotions.A very well written story.

Title: Choosing Author: docmon Genres: Drama ID: 473
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-01 20:05:18
I enjoyed reading this very much as it gave me something new to think
about.We know why the Hobbits went on the Quest and a little about why
Boromir was chosen, but little of how Legolas and Gimli came to be
chosen.The writer gives excellent reasons for the choice of both as
well as an explanation as to why Boromir rather than Faramir was
chosen despite Faramir having the dream more often.
A convincing trio of ficlets.

Title: Many Branches Author: Baranduin Races: Cross-Cultural:
Frodo and Faramir ID: 420
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-01 21:10:59
Spoilers!
The passage in TT, when Faramir speaks wistfully of the possiblity of
meeting Frodo again is one of my favorites. This story is as warm as
the sunshine in which they sit, discussing the small minutiae of Shire
life. I really got a kick out of Faramir trying to figure out Frodo's
family tree, and I loved it when Frodo laughed. This was such a
peaceful and delightful scene.

Title: In the Hands of the King Author: fantasyfan Times: Late
Third Age: Gondor ID: 231
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-01 21:11:38
Gentle and warm, this vignette of the King and his foster-brothers
tending the wounded Frodo at Cormallen is just lovely. I love the item
found to serve as blanket, and the comfort it brought not only to the
unconscious Ringbearer, but to the one who sought to heal him.

Title: This crown of stars Author: Fawsley Races: Men: General
Drabbles ID: 586
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-01 21:12:16
Even Aragorn, whose name was also Hope, must have occasionally had
times of doubt and despair over the years. This captures one of them
with a good deal of feeling, and yet not angst, but simply
resignation. I am glad that such times did not last for him.

Title: A Little Misunderstanding Author: Radbooks Races:
Cross-Cultural: Elves and Men ID: 275
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-01 21:13:09
You know, I'd never have thought of how it might appear to some of
Aragorn's young cousins when he so suddenly vanished away! But, like
many fics which answer unspoken questions about canon events, there is
a moment of thinking "of COURSE it had to be like that!" followed by
wondering why I never thought of it myself. Excellent job, and a great
characterization of little Halbarad.

Title: The Journey Author: foxrafer (csevans8) Times: Late Third
Age: General Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 604
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-01 21:13:50
The author really captures the essential Tookishness of Pippin in
this--yes, it's a big world and a scary one--but it's also a
fascinating one. Wonderful!

Title: Elanor of Westmarch: The Return Author: Baranduin Races:
Hobbits: Family ID: 78
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-01 21:14:38
Such an evocative story of the aging Elanor--it is quite clear that
she is the daughter of the dauntless Samwise. I love her determination
and her insistence on going her own way, just as I love the obvious
care and concern of her assorted children and grand-children.

Her encounter, as she sat, was left ambiguous, which lent the whole
thing a rather dreamlike air. Yet to my mind, it was, in fact a real
encounter, and very appropriate as well.

Title: A White Coverlet to Cool a Hobbit's Toes Author: Claudia
Races: Cross-Cultural: Friendship ID: 73
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-01 21:15:26
Claudia makes Frodo's wish to see some snow under better circumstances
than on the Quest, and to get away from the rather overprotective and
stifling concern of his cousins and Sam seem very logical. And of
course, Aragorn and Faramir would fulfill his every wish if they
could. The h/c is gentle, and only incidental to the friendships being
explored here. Very sweet indeed.

Title: Promises Broken and Kept Author: periantari Genres: Drama:
Featuring Frodo or Sam ID: 144
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-01 21:16:34
This sweet h/c, with little Merry getting sick after Frodo moves to
Bag End was written for me in an exchange. I love stories in which
Frodo gets to be the comforter and care-giver, rather than the
recipient, and I adore stories that explore Frodo's foster brother
relationship to Merry--and this fulfilled both wishes in one very
sweet and touching story.

Title: Home Author: Aranel Took Races: Dwarves: Drabbles ID: 533
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-01 21:17:19
This was a very satisfying drabble, as solid and dependable as the
Dwarf himself. I love his satisfaction, both as a homeowner and an
artist, with the work he's done in his new domain. Best of all are his
refections on why he is now relocated--and what family now means to him.

Title: Eagle of the Star Author: Neoinean Genres: Adventure:
Incomplete ID: 327
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-01 21:33:41
It's too bad this exciting story is incomplete. I hope she does, as I
would like to follow it. It has a lot of good plotting and
characterization, though I do wish that she would be more careful in
her use of homonyms.

Title: Seven Sisters Author: Pearl Took Races: Other Beings ID: 388
Reviewer: stefaniab 2008-10-01 23:58:17
Spoilers!
I first read "Seven Sisters" when Pearl first offered it for a
Halloween challenge. And indeed, this tale is sufficiently spooky for
any Halloween story reading. Pearl gives the legend of the Seven
Sisters astral constellation a Middle Earth spin.

"Seven Sisters" starts off with an unsettling incident where 25-year
old Pippin is teased and tormented by his sister and six of her
friends. Feeling harassed and disgusted, Pippin runs off with a bottle
of whisky to a foggy mountainside near home. Now seriously drunk, he
has an encounter with the other-worldly apparitions of the title.

As in all scarey stories, atmosphere plays a great part in this tale.
You will be chilled, just like poor, guilt-ridden Pippin.

Msg# 9465

Silmarillion Writers Guild temporarily down Posted by Marta October 02, 2008 - 10:48:18 Topic ID# 9465
Hey guys,

Just a quick heads-up: the SWG site
(http://www.silmarillionwritersguild.org/) is temporarily offline. That
site's administrators are aware of the problem and are working to fix
it. Knowing how hard they work for that site, I'm sure it will be back
online as soon as is possible.

If you would like to vote for a story hosted for the MEFAs that is
hosted at that site, please don't get discouraged if you receive the
following error:

"This Account Has Been Suspended
Please contact the support department as soon as possible, and please
have your site name ready. "

The story will be back online shortly. In the meantime, you're welcome
to read it at another site if you can find it, or add it to your MEFA
wish list so you can be reminded to read it later.

Happy reviewing!

Marta

Msg# 9466

Re: Silmarillion Writers Guild temporarily down Posted by heartofoshun@aol.com October 02, 2008 - 13:02:53 Topic ID# 9465
Hey, please delete this if it is considered unfair pimpage: I just wanted to
note, in case anyone had choosen today as the day they might want to read
one of my stories, they are all posted on HASA, as well. (Not that I had
expected a huge crush or anything, quite the contrary! LOL)

Oshun



**************Looking for simple solutions to your real-life financial
challenges? Check out WalletPop for the latest news and information, tips and
calculators. (http://www.walletpop.com/?NCID=emlcntuswall00000001)


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

Msg# 9467

ADMIN – About Elves Posted by Tanaqui October 02, 2008 - 13:58:49 Topic ID# 9467
Hi guys

Here is your weekly admin post  this week focusing on stories about
Tolkien's "Fair Folk": the Elves. If you're a fan of wily Fanorians,
like stories about the woodland realms of the Sindar or enjoy the
less-written-about Vanyar or Avari, we have something for you. Whether
you like reading about them crafting marvellous works, fighting bravely
in battle or quarreling as only someone with a grudge hundreds of years
old can, I hope this list helps you find stories you'd like to review.

For the list of pieces in this announcement I've used an author's main
category selection. Each author selects three category choices, only one
of which it can be placed in; but the author has still described it as
being suitable for three category choices, even if it isn't placed
there. So if an author selected the "race" category Elves it will be on
this list.

Finding stories that selected a certain main category is pretty
straightforward. To do this

1. Log in to www.mefawards.net/MEFA2008/
2. Click the "Stories" link at the top of the page.
3. Click the "Show Filter" link.
4. Click the "Clear All Filters" button if you've used the filter before
this session.
5. Select the genre, race, or time period you would like from the
"Genre, Race, Time" filter (sixth from the bottom).
6. Click the "Display selected nominations" button.

This will pull up all of the nominated pieces that selected your main
category as a first-, second-, or third-choice category, even if they
didn't end up categorized in that main category.

******************************

Here are the stories competing in this year's competition whose author
selected Races: Elves to describe their piece.

Alassante
---(260) Out, Damn'd Spot! Out, I Say!
---(682) A Great Cause for Concern
Angelica
---(322) Name Calling: Group Identity and the Other among First Age Elves
aranelgoldenflower
---(171) Upon the Pebbled Shore
Aria
---(321) A Smile
Armariel
---(269) Elrond's Farewell
Bodkin
---(161) Comfort
Bodkin
---(170) Dragons In The Trollshaws
---(190) A Darkness Lies behind Us
---(310) Long Memories
---(419) Healing
---(698) Shadows
---(704) In Search of Stillness
Branwyn (Lady Branwyn)
---(33) Wave-Singer
brindlemom2
---(233) Coming Home
Claudia
---(193) The Language of Waves
Dawn Felagund
---(32) An Ordinary Woman
---(74) Stars of the Lesser
---(107) A Woman in Few Words: The Character of Nerdanel and Her
Treatment in Canon and Fandom
---(125) For What I Wait
---(128) The Dance
---(131) Surprise
---(140) Journeys of Vása
---(247) Essecarmë
---(253) Noldolantë
---(254) Discretion
---(255) Rekindling
---(256) The Scribe and the Heir
---(272) The Ghost in the Garden
---(323) One Last Wish
Dot
---(169) A Problem Shared
Elen Kortirion
---(96) A Sea Visit
---(516) Collecting Hearts I, II, III & VI
Elena Tiriel
---(64) Unwilling
---(465) Last Stroke
Elitihien
---(534) All these hands
Elleth
---(218) Ghost
---(399) Return
---(736) Five Fires
Ellie
---(110) Like Roses over a Fence
---(658) If I Had One Wish
Elwen
---(195) Harmony
---(735) Tolo Dan Na Ngalad
Empy
---(589) Silver Rain
Encaitariel
---(191) In This Far Land
---(298) My Oaths I Will Keep
Eresse
---(648) Prior Claim: The Sons of Elrond Series
erobey
---(712) Not Yet
Erviniae
---(538) The Wrong Path
Fiondil
---(55) WAR: A Promise Before Dying
---(57) WOUNDS: Invisible Scars
---(451) MAGIC: The Password
Ford of Bruinen
---(660) Maglor's Harp
---(661) I Married for Love
---(662) Crumbling Walls
---(714) Vodka
gwidhiel
---(289) Don't Explain
Gwynnyd
---(432) Love at First Sight
Ignoble Bard
---(36) Hearts Like the Sea
---(646) Silver Blossoms Blown
Imhiriel
---(356) The Pillar Perished Is
---(367) Taking Roots
---(369) Forsaken
---(375) A Race, To Be Like Me
Istarnie
---(659) Nerdanel"s Sons
Jael
---(86) King Stag
---(87) Nightfall
---(178) The Houseless
---(204) Here's To The King!
---(205) Out of the Blue
---(348) Elflings
---(408) Wayward Sons
---(557) Twentynine White Horses
Jay of Lasgalen
---(10) A Large Bold Hand
---(176) The Legend of the Grey Riders
---(700) The Librarian
Keiliss
---(76) Footsteps in Time
---(251) Spaces in the Heart
---(252) To Be A King
---(283) Star's End
---(717) Circle of Silver
Kenaz
---(318) Ionnath-Estel ( The Sons Of Hope )
kitt_otter
---(702) Hidden Watcher
---(703) Orc Talk!
Klose
---(540) And Then There Was Cake, or Begetting Day Horrors
Lady Elina
---(151) And Whisper You to This Earth
Larner
---(1) The Craft of the Elven Smith
---(293) Epiphany
Lindelea
---(663) Dorwinion Wine
Maeve Riannon
---(404) The Nightingale
Marta
---(365) They Also Serve
---(475) Galdor: An Elf By Any Other Name....
Meril
---(219) Burdens
---(389) Five things that never happened to Nerdanel
---(390) Flickers
Mews1945
---(202) The Healers from the Sea
MithLuin
---(221) Lessons from the Mountain
Moreth
---(139) The Revenge of Curufin's Horse
---(220) Alqualondë
NeumeIndil
---(382) The Rescue of Celebrian
Nieriel Raina
---(163) Utlie'n Aur
---(558) Spiced Wine On A Snowy Day
---(560) The Stranger
---(701) Free To Live
---(707) The Water's Song
---(708) Whatever Harm Encroached
---(709) Hold To Hope
Noliel
---(541) Thicker Than Water
Oshun
---(49) A Harmony In Autumn
---(77) Young Fëanáro Makes A Stone
---(80) Denial
---(212) Full Brothers in Blood
---(371) My Shining Stars
pandemonium_213
---(52) The Apprentice
---(54) Broken Star
---(58) Cat's Paws
---(665) Risk Assessment
Pentangle
---(612) Fidelis
Phyncke
---(160) A Sleep Over
---(609) In Dreams
Queen Galadriel
---(697) The Queen's Gift
Raksha the Demon
---(46) Undivided
---(61) The Blessing of the Waters
---(423) Refuge
RavensWing14337
---(552) The Littlest Warrior
red lasbelin
---(563) Blue
Rhapsody
---(81) Duty, Honour, Country
---(82) The Last Stand
---(409) The Last Words
---(570) Midwinter Thoughts
---(718) Vengeance's Folly
Ribby
---(122) Blood and Iron
Robinka
---(83) The Sky Is Over
---(84) In absentia
---(398) Maglor's Song
---(657) House of Ransom
Savageseraph
---(583) Galadriel Remembers
---(584) The Strength of Men
Sivan Shemesh
---(582) Adar & Ion
spookystoy
---(407) My Legacy
Star In Ruin
---(555) Even Legends Fade
Tanaqui
---(120) The War of Wrath
---(279) Celevon a Mallen
---(387) Possessing the greatest powers
---(406) An Elf-lord Revealed
Tena
---(537) Wherever You Go
---(562) Switch
Thundera Tiger
---(349) Seaworthy
viv
---(182) Dawn Twilight
---(276) Some Confusion in Accounts
weepingnaiad
---(493) Starcrossed
---(494) A Perfect Impression

To find more information about any of these pieces, just do the following

1. Log in to www.mefawards.net/MEFA2008/
2. Click the "Stories" link at the top of the web page.
3. Type the Story ID followed by the "#" sign into the search bar, and
click the "Search" button.

For instance, searching for "709#" will bring up story #709, Hold To
Hope by Nieriel Raina

Stories about Elves are competing in the following subcategories:

---Genres: Adventure: General
---Genres: Adventure: Gondor
---Genres: Alternate Universe: Angst/Tragedy
---Genres: Alternate Universe: Drabbles
---Genres: Alternate Universe: Other Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Genres: Drama: Featuring the Noldor
---Genres: Drama: Final Partings
---Genres: Drama: General
---Genres: Drama: General Drabbles
---Genres: Drama: General Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Genres: Drama: Hurt/Comfort
---Genres: Drama: Incomplete
---Genres: Horror: General
---Genres: Humor: Drabbles
---Genres: Humor: Elven Lands
---Genres: Humor: General
---Genres: Humor: Other Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Genres: Humor: Valar & Maiar
---Genres: Non-Fiction: Character Studies
---Genres: Non-Fiction: General
---Genres: Poetry: Drama
---Genres: Poetry: General
---Genres: Romance: Drabbles
---Genres: Romance: Elven Lands
---Genres: Romance: General
---Genres: Romance: Other Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Races: Cross-Cultural: Elves and Men
---Races: Cross-Cultural: Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Races: Cross-Cultural: General
---Races: Cross-Cultural: Post-Ring War
---Races: Elves: Drabbles
---Races: Elves: Family
---Races: Elves: General
---Races: Elves: House of Elrond
---Races: Elves: House of Finwe
---Races: Elves: Incomplete
---Races: Elves: Mirkwood Elves
---Races: Elves: Noldor Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Races: Hobbits: General
---Races: Villains: Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Races: Villains: General
---Times: First Age and Prior: General
---Times: First Age and Prior: House of Finwe
---Times: Fourth Age and Beyond: General
---Times: Late Third Age: General
---Times: Modern ---Times: General
---Times: Multi-Age: Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Times: Multi-Age: General
---Times: Second and Early Third Age: General

Remember: The lists of stories and sub-categories listed above are based
on the main categories chosen by the author.

Happy reading!

Tanaqui
(MEFA Tech Support)

P.S. - If you noticed a mistake in this post, please email about it so I
can check whether a mistake has been made and, if necessary, correct my
announcement. You can reach me privately at
techsupport(.at.)mefawards(.dot.)net. Thanks!

Msg# 9468

Re: Silmarillion Writers Guild temporarily down Posted by Dawn Felagund October 02, 2008 - 16:03:39 Topic ID# 9465
Hi, Marta,

Thank you for your quick response on this. Our account with our host expired
today and the auto-renew failed, so the site went offline. Unfortunately, I
was out of the office today at work and so didn't get the emails until now.
The account has been renewed and the site is back online. I apologize for
any inconvenience this caused MEFA reviewers and our authors.

All the best,

Dawn

--
~oOo~
Dawn Felagund
www.silmarillionwritersguild.org


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

Msg# 9469

Re: Silmarillion Writers Guild temporarily down Posted by heartofoshun@aol.com October 02, 2008 - 16:12:37 Topic ID# 9465
Yea! Back on line! (Poor, Dawn! What a drag. It makes my daughter nervous
that I pay all my bills automatically, know I can see why.)



**************Looking for simple solutions to your real-life financial
challenges? Check out WalletPop for the latest news and information, tips and
calculators. (http://www.walletpop.com/?NCID=emlcntuswall00000001)


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

Msg# 9470

Re: Silmarillion Writers Guild temporarily down Posted by Marta October 02, 2008 - 19:40:43 Topic ID# 9465
Hi Dawn,

N/p. Wondered if it might be something like that. Glad to know the
problem's fixed.

Marta

Dawn Felagund wrote:
>
>
> Hi, Marta,
>
> Thank you for your quick response on this. Our account with our host expired
> today and the auto-renew failed, so the site went offline. Unfortunately, I
> was out of the office today at work and so didn't get the emails until now.
> The account has been renewed and the site is back online. I apologize for
> any inconvenience this caused MEFA reviewers and our authors.
>
> All the best,
>
> Dawn
>

Msg# 9471

MEFA Reviews for Thursday, October 2, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 02, 2008 - 20:11:35 Topic ID# 9471
Title: Shadow King Author: Claudia Genres: Alternate Universe:
Angst/Tragedy ID: 227
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-02 04:36:43
A truly chilling tale which made me shiver to read it.A man of
Aragorn's strength would be very bad indeed if he chose the dark side
as Legolas remarks.
I'm so glad Tolkien's Aragorn turned out very differently,but
enjoyed,if that is quite the right word,this well written glimpse of
how things might have been,had Aragorn had less strength of character.

Title: Wife of the Thain Author: LA Knight Genres: Romance: Other
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 513
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-02 15:17:48
What an amusing idea for a series! I had of course read the reference,
but you really expanded the idea. I particularly like how your story
mimics the great romances of canon (Beren and Luthien comes to mind),
but still has a sensuality and immediacy one naturally associates with
hobbits.

Title: Dark Dreams Author: SlightlyTookish Races: Hobbits:
Hurt/Comfort ID: 550
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-02 15:18:07
This was a touching tale of how Merry and Pippin deal with the
memories after the war. We know that Frodo was bothered by his
morgul-wound, so it's reasonable to think that anything affected by a
Morgul wound (and Merry would count IMO) would have problems. Nicely told.

Title: The Haradric Whore and Her Son Author: annmarwalk/EdorasLass
CoAuthors Races: Cross-Cultural ID: 124
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-02 16:05:07
Spoilers!
I think that annmarwalk and EdorasLass do to original characters what
Degas does to ballerinas. I mean, we all knew that someone cooked the
bread that made its way to Denethor's dinnerplate, but these two
authors make the cooks and consierges and yes even whores as integral
to Tolkien's world as any characters that Tolkien gave them. Like
Degas's ballerinas, Gaersum, Ciramoush and Mag are graceful and
endearing; their simple work becomes an art form in itself.

There is so much to love about "The Haradric Whore and Her Son" that
it is hard to even know where to start. Mag is in a close tie with
Mormegil as my favorite of Ann's original characters, but for an
entirely different way: she is delightly earty, an indomitable and
unsinkable woman, and I always am reminded of why I love Gondor so
much whenever I read her. And she shines in those scenes that she is
privy to (I particularly like that she has to keep reminding herself
that Faramir is no now steward!), but she is relally only peripheral
to the story.

Ciramoush is a woman that you could see scoring high on a Mary Sue
litmus test. Her family is killed, she's forced into prostitution, and
she bears a child that just refuses to be aborted to a mysterious
golden-haired stranger yet, somehow she doesn't come off at all as
suish or cliched. I think it's the fact that her reactions are so
understated. She also is a woman who is very pragmatic and I can see
why she and Mag become such good friends. Mag hasn't suffered nearly
as much, yet here is a character who is every bit as indomitable as
our beloved cook.

Gaersum I could write a whole essay on why Gaersum is so delightful,
and still not explain it all. He just rocks. I don't want to gush so
much that I embarrass Ann and EdorasLass, so I'll leave it at that.

And it feels like I'm just touching the iceberg on why this story has
always meant so much to me. It is doubtless different than what many
people in fandom envision when they think of Gondor and Boromir, yet I
always find it a very enjoyable and thought-provoking view of
Middle-earth. By the end, when Ciramoush comes to the Houses of
Healing, I always find myself cheering along, often out loud. (I
actually started clapping at one point!) Thank you, ann and EL, for
this story.


Title: Tower of the Moon Author: Nath Times: Multi-Age ID: 577
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-02 16:13:55
Spoilers!
In many ways, this set of vignettes is a study in contrasts, comparing
through their differences both Isildur with Aragorn, and (Second Age)
Minas Ithil with (late Third Age) Minas Morgul. Yet in that contrast
we see not so much two diverging lines but a circle that continues to
happen. In the end Aragorn is right, I think, that our great works are
often changed by forces beyond our control and that they are perceived
by later generations in a way we might never imagine.

It was very perceptive to think of Isildur looking back on Numenor
this way, and I never even imagined what Aragorn would think on
looking on Isildur's city - so kudos for finding ground my fertile
muses hadn't thought about before. This is both a perceptive and very
in-character examination of the cyclical nature of Tolkien's history.

Title: The Roses of Imloth Melui Author: Aervir Genres: Drama:
Gondor Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 435
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-02 18:00:21
Spoilers!
In canon, Ioreth comes off as a bit silly with her merandering tongue,
but Aervir won't leave it at that. In these ten drabbles she gives us
moments from the healer-woman's wife, showing how the road to the
Houses of Healing wasn't as straight as might be supposed. In the end,
we see that see how Ioreth's strength of character and exposure to
pain gives her a uniquely feminine (within Middle-earth, at least)
form of courage, and allows her to critique the perversion of this in
her perhaps most famous female patient. A very eye-opening series.

Title: Handy With A Sword Author: Tanaqui Genres: Romance: Other
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 437
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-02 18:01:33
Spoilers!
I have always thought that many of Mike Longcor's fabulous songs were
a natural match for Faramir and Eowyn, and I guess this author and I
are slowly working to prove that point. "Handy With a Sword" certainly
succeeds on that front. Tanaqui does a fantastic job of incorporating
the line from the lyrics into the last drabble, and I quite agree, I
can see it being penned by some cheeky ranger all too readily.

Quite aside from that, these drabbles show Eowyn in a remarkable
light: fun-loving and bold, but also more than just "one of the boys."
She may have said she would [be a shield-maiden no more], but that
will always be part of her identity; and if Eowyn will no longer allow
that part of her to come to the forefront, well, Faramir would still
do well to remember where she was born, the fact that she grew up
around brothers and male cousins, and the many other factors that make
her a very different sort of lady than a Gondorian woman would be.

And that brings us to what I love so much about this drabble set -
those aspects of Eowyn's character are definitely there, but they're
hardly mentioned. We know Eomer taught her at least one sparring move,
but for the most part this more tomboyish influence is completely
non-explicit. Which is as it should be, but it's fiendishly difficult
to pull off an understated characterization. Tanaqui, however, pulls
it off with aplomb, resulting in a most enjoyable series.

Title: Pip-napped! Author: Dreamflower/Lindelea CoAuthors Genres:
Adventure ID: 669
Reviewer: Claudia 2008-10-02 20:30:39
Spoilers!
I really enjoyed reading this story. The premise makes perfect sense.
Of course Aragorn as king would have some potential enemies, as well
as people who think they can make some money off of the new king
through the king's very good friends. Of course Pippin proves himself
to be quite resourceful. I love kidnapping stories so this was a
really enjoyable read!

Title: Call of the Wild Author: annmarwalk Genres: Romance:
Drabbles ID: 94
Reviewer: Claudia 2008-10-02 20:33:13
This was a stunning portrayal in so few words of an unusual courtship.
Hee. I can totally see how the ladies of Gondor would fan themselves
over those horse men from Rohan! Nicely done!

Title: Murder The Dawn Author: crowdaughter Genres: Alternate
Universe: Incomplete ID: 383
Reviewer: Claudia 2008-10-02 20:40:35
Spoilers!
whew, holy crap this was a dark one! That first chapter was incredibly
chilling, from the killing of every member of the fellowship. His cold
calculations that he needed to kill every one of them, even his lover
and the innocent hobbits. And the vision of Elrond's library burning.
For some reason that one has stayed with me. What a chilling
alternative universe!

Title: The Journey Author: foxrafer (csevans8) Times: Late Third
Age: General Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 604
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-02 23:07:57
This was a really perceptive drabble looking at some of Pippin's
thoughts after the Fellowship left Rivendell. It actually reminded me
of how I feel at times in my graduate program, surrounded by
intellectual giants. I can see that Pippin, as the youngest, would
feel just this way; he also probably was used to being the leader
(being the thain's son) and so not being the most socially advantaged
character would be humbling for him. Good for him to rise to the
challenge! And good for foxrafer for showing this
often-underappreciated aspect of his courage.

Title: Sing All Ye People! Author: Raksha the Demon Times: Late
Third Age: Gondor ID: 249
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-02 23:13:13
Spoilers!
I know I've read this vignette before the MEFAs, but I don't think
I've ever had it impressed on me how philosophically *deep* "Sing All
Ye People" is. The author nails it, exactly - it is Faramir's ability
to balance passion and reason (among other things, of course!) that
lets him resist the Ring's pull. That's a very astute observation, and
I love the way Raksha fleshed this out by the voices of the different
verses of the song. Very well done!

Title: A Perfect World Author: mistycracraft Genres: Romance:
Elven Lands ID: 248
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-02 23:28:47
A sweet and touching moment between Aragorn and Arwen.I could a;lmost
smell the flowers in this atmospheric story.

Msg# 9472

MEFA Reviews for Friday, October 3, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 03, 2008 - 19:56:04 Topic ID# 9472
Title: Terra Incognita Author: Branwyn (Lady Branwyn) Genres:
Humor: Drabbles ID: 723
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-03 03:32:59
For some reason I love fics like this, reminding us of the one who
brought us the wonderful world in which we love to explore. This is
easily something that could actually have happened. Brilliant!

Title: Return of the King Author: Imhiriel Races: Men: General
Drabbles ID: 355
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-03 03:36:25
Spoilers!
Another King, too seldom seen in fic, and a different return. But the
arguments are compelling, and the scene convincing.

Title: A Great Evil Unmade Author: Linaewen Genres: Alternate
Universe: Steward's Family ID: 267
Reviewer: Isabeau of Greenlea 2008-10-03 10:36:51
Spoilers!
A most enjoyable (and to me, plausible) vignette. Boromir succumbs to
the Ring, but finds Frodo afterwards, and apologizes. Then, during the
orc attack at Amon Hen, Frodo is sorely wounded, and the other hobbits
captured. The Fellowship is broken, yet in a different way, and Frodo
gives the Ring to the one other person he knows now understands its
evil intimately-and thus will be able to resist it best.

Boromir's voice here is very clear and in character. He has put aside
self-castigation in favor of the action that will redeem himself and
his people. His years of battling along the fences of Mordor have
uniquely prepared him for this task, which he approaches as a soldier
and strategist. Linaewne makes it seem fitting that the heir to the
land which has held firm against the Darkness for centuries should be
the one to bring about its downfall.

Title: The Captain's New Clothes Author: Raksha the Demon Genres:
Humor: Other Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 421
Reviewer: Isabeau of Greenlea 2008-10-03 10:42:24
Spoilers!
I always wondered what the Hildebrant brothers were on when they
painted their portrait of Faramir confronting Frodo and Sam in an
outfit that included russet orange leggings and a mask! Raksha
actually comes up with a clever explanation for this picture which
includes a fond but fashion-challenged aunt. The captain manfully dons
this motley, so that his men might continue to enjoy the more
appreciated fruits of Ivriniel's generosity. Fararmi's care and
concern for the men in his command shines through, depicted in concise
and clever wording from one of the people who writes him best.

Title: Dawn Twilight Author: viv Times: Modern Times ID: 182
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-03 11:31:43
A very clever mixture of modern-day and Tolkien, as we see those who
fought at Aragorn's side seeking to guard those descended from him
from others who find they no longer belong in the world as Men have
made for it.

As for the denouement--surprisingly satisfying, although I know Leo
will grieve for what he's left behind.

Do read it!

Title: Celevon a Mallen Author: Tanaqui Genres: Romance: Other
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 279
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-03 21:05:00
There is a resonating, intricate interconnection here between nature
and the protagonists which I find especially appropriate for Elves;
and a magical, ethereal feeling infuses the story.

The descriptions are lovely and somehow profound (if that makes sense)
- it's as if every colour, every touch, every emotion has a special,
deliberate meaning and importance, as if they capture how Elves are so
very much more aware of their surroundings than us mere Mortals. At
the same time revealing at they still remain a mystery; relatable as
they still remain unfathomable.

Msg# 9473

MEFA Reviews for Saturday, October 4, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 04, 2008 - 19:52:59 Topic ID# 9473
Title: Answering the Call Author: docmon Genres: Drama ID: 340
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-04 05:01:02
Spoilers!
A scary and very credible exploration of the fates of the members of
the Fellowship if they had each taken the Ring. Docmon takes the
reader down each tortuous path, from the younger hobbits' rashness to
the duty-driven ensnarement of Boromir and Aragorn's mistake in
judgment. I found the chapters about Boromir and Gandalf the most
haunting; Gandalf becoming more and more like Saruman, but all of
these AU's are hard-edged gems, brilliant and multi-faceted and
sharp-edged.

Title: In The Midst Of Summer Author: Cuthalion Genres: Drama:
Final Partings ID: 270
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-04 05:18:58
Spoilers!
A lovely and nigh-Tolkienish treatment of the transition in Sam's
life, from the beloved gardener and Master of Bag End to the voyager
he will become for his final journey. The descriptions of Bag End and
the grieving Gamgees, and the loss of the much-loved Rosie, are
wonderful, but it is the transition towards the end, in Sam's heart
and mind, from his daily existence to that yearning he had long ago
released when Frodo took the white ship, now found once more and
waiting to lead him into the West. Cuthalion mixes the prosaic and the
magic seamlessly; and the ending sends a shiver up at least this
reader's spine.

Title: The Sky Is Over Author: Robinka Races: Elves: Drabbles ID: 83
Reviewer: pandemonium_213 2008-10-04 13:57:30
As one inclined to verbosity, I admire those who have the ability to
capture powerful emotion and imagery in a spare one hundred words or
so. Frankly, many drabbles fall short in this, but there are writers
who have mastered the art of the drabble. Robinka stands tall among
them. [The Sky is Over] is an outstanding example of her work. Every
time I read this ficlet -- a response to a challenge on the
Silmarillion Writers' Guild -- Finrod's emotions in response to his
sister's shattering question hit me viscerally. Binka's word-craft is
exquisite and precise, extracting the pain of Finrod's loss for the
reader to truly experience.

A beautiful piece, Binka.


Title: Broken Star Author: pandemonium_213 Races: Villains:
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 54
Reviewer: Tanaqui 2008-10-04 14:27:05
Spoilers!
This is drabble that manages to be both painful and exquisite at the
same time. The subject matter is painful; the writing is exquisite.

I note that pandemonium, in her author's notes, says she does not feel
herself to be a natural at the short form. Iin this work she has
certainly delivered everything that a great drabble should provide: a
well executed structure, carefully selected and appropriate
vocabulary, and a powerful conclusion in the final line.

The scene is a moment after the fall of Eregion when Sauron attempts
to recover the three rings of the Elves after the fall of Eregion.
Most impressive is the way the whole sweep of the relationship between
Celebrimbor and Sauron is laid out in a few words, as well as each of
the protagonists' respective feelings at this particular moment, and
pandemonium ensures Celebrimbor will not be remembered as a potential
fool blinded by love of craft but as a tragic hero with strength and
presence of mind.

In short, this drabble is a gem as wonderful as those wrought by the
master craftsman of the Elves who is his subject. Well done!

Title: The Kindly Airs Author: Dwimordene Times: Late Third Age:
General Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 480
Reviewer: Tanaqui 2008-10-04 14:27:26
This drabble was written for a request for rarely-heard-from points of
view, and it is certainly that! There is some wonderful phrasing in
here, such as ["woe-laden with roiled earth"], and a stirring final
line. A very cleverly written piece.


Title: Deliverance Author: Imhiriel Races: Men: Gondor Drabbles
ID: 285
Reviewer: Tanaqui 2008-10-04 14:27:39
Spoilers!
It's a delight to comes across a drabble that explores one of those
small throwaway lines tucked away in Tolkien's great legendarium that
are rarely touched upon by fanfic writers. It's even more of a
pleasure when one finds the subject has been tackled by Imhiriel, who
has produced another of her small masterpieces.

Her descriptions of the mariner and his surroudings are vivid; the
sense of despair halfway through the drabble is tangible; and the
coming of hope at the end is as delicately and subtly dropped upon the
reader as the falling eagle feather. Lovely work bravo!


Title: Giving Gifts Author: Marta Genres: Humor: Other
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 426
Reviewer: Tanaqui 2008-10-04 14:27:57
Spoilers!
This quadruple-length drabble made me laugh out loud. Marta has seen
beyond the surface of Denethor's generally cold manner in the books to
explore the man who could produce the occasional flashes of dry wit
described by Tolkien. While I think the exact circumstances described
are only credible in the context of a humour piece like this, they do
allow Marta to perfectly convey the way Denethor and Imhrahil can
bicker and taunt each other privately while maintaining appropriate
court etiquette that, on the surface, cannot be taken as offensive.
The writing is sly and understated, slipping many jokes in under the
reader's guard, an ideal vehicle to express the actions and thoughts
of her protagonists. Well done!


Title: Gently Held Author: viv Genres: Romance: Other Fixed-Length
Ficlets ID: 6
Reviewer: Tanaqui 2008-10-04 14:28:08
In this triple drabble, viv has created a wonderfully lyrical hymn of
praise from Arwen to Aragorn. The phrasing is rich and rolling, and
expressive of both Arwen's sweetness and her strength. The reason she
gives to the gossips of the Gondorian court (for it is surely them she
is answering) for loving her husband might seem a little unexpected to
her listeners and yet makes perfect sense. Just delightful!


Title: There shall be Mirth at our Meeting Author: Imhiriel
Genres: Humor: Drabbles ID: 377
Reviewer: Tanaqui 2008-10-04 14:28:21
This is a cute drabble providing an excellent outsider's perspective
from a couple of well-drawn original characters. Nicely done.

Title: Recognition Author: Dwimordene Times: Late Third Age:
Gondor Drabbles ID: 481
Reviewer: Tanaqui 2008-10-04 14:28:37
Dwimordene has created a nicely expressed and subtle exploration of
how Eowyn's deeds must have been perceived in Gondor and how Eowyn
must have felt about her reception. Hooray for Ioreth's perceptives
(and Faramir's too, of course)! Most enjoyable.

Title: Call of the Wild Author: annmarwalk Genres: Romance:
Drabbles ID: 94
Reviewer: Tanaqui 2008-10-04 14:29:17
Spoilers!
This drabble provides a delightful description of Thengel and the
dashing figure he must have cut at the Gondorian court in his youth.
The contrasts with the men Morwen has known all here life are sharply
drawn, and her own strength of character shines through. Very nice.


Title: In absentia Author: Robinka Races: Elves: House of Finwe
ID: 84
Reviewer: pandemonium_213 2008-10-04 14:32:44
With [In absentia], Robinka has written a stunningly dark and (to me)
starkly realistic take on Maedhros' post-Thangorodrim state of mind.
Such a horrific experience must have damaged Maedhros profoundly. In
this story, he wavers on the precarious boundary between sanity and
madness.

Robinka illustrates this so well in the searing intensity of Finrod's
desperation to reach Maedhros and the dialog that emerges between
them. The setting of the story and its carefully thought-out details
-- the darkness of Maedhros' chamber, the hissing and crackling of the
fire in the hearth (a sinister feel here, not at all comforting), the
odors that assault Fingon's senses, all in contrast their past lives
in the "Arcadia" of Aman -- act as a foundation to Fingon's
frustration and Maedhros' compromised state. The bittersweet
resolution of the story offers a glimmer of hope -- that Fingon has at
last reached his cousin.

Such an intense scenario could lend itself to overwrought angst, but
Binka avoids this. There is an authenticity here that never descends
into clichd pathos.

I'll also add that [In absentia] highlights one of the major
attractants that Tolkienian fan fiction holds for me: the varied
interpretations of key events and characters of the mythology. It's
comparable to a group of artists painting a still life from a single
subject: each artist's eyes and mind see something a bit different.
Robinka's interpretation is one of the more compelling ones that I
have read. Well done, Binka. Very well done.




Title: The Prisoner of Time Author: Raksha the Demon Genres:
Alternate Universe: Steward's Family ID: 313
Reviewer: pandemonium_213 2008-10-04 15:53:09
[The Prisoner of Time] is a superb "what-if" scenario in every sense
of the word: character, plausibility, setting and the very fine
writing. I hesitate to label Raksha's story as "AU" since *every*
detail is so consistent with the characters as depicted by the old
Oxford don, but given the premise, it must necessarily be designated
as such*. It is a well-crafted and highly believable alternate stream
in Middle-earth's flow of time.

Through Denethor's point of view, Raksha captures precisely what I
would imagine his character to be in the waning days of his reign had
he not chosen the
path to self-destruction. In fact, here he is a dogged survivor --
bitter as poison and anguished -- but nonetheless a survivor. He is
galled by those who turn to whom he sees as the pretender of the
degraded Northern line. From individuals like his brother-by-marriage
who question his sanity to the whole of Minas Tirith as exemplified by
Raksha's absolutely delicious text...

{The usurper rides through the streets of the White City. The City
that had entombed his lady...now throws open her broken gates to
Isildur's upstart heir like a giddy strumpet opening perfumed knees.}

...Denethor feels betrayed by all.

Raksha skillfully addresses the multiplicity of outcomes of Denethor's
decision in this alternate stream. A heart-wrenching cascade of
tragedy and loss occurs as the result of his survival.

Although Denethor's resentment is searingly acidic, Raksha, through
her story-telling skills, creates a sympathetic character in the
embattled Steward. As one who gravitates toward these dark,
intelligent and conflicted types, I found myself rooting for Raksha's
Denethor: "Hang on and survive, man, just to spite them all!"

*I do not see AU as pejorative in the least, but in fact this is a
genre that I like a great deal. Raksha's stone-cold knowledge of canon
is why this AU works so well.




Title: Dreamscape Author: Tanaqui Races: Dwarves: Drabbles ID: 442
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-04 16:16:12
Spoilers!
What a wonderful and convincing way to explain the quote at the
beginning of the drabble! Yes, I can well imagine that the Dwarves in
their pride, their sense of history and nostalgia would want to keep
the symbols of their forcefully abandoned kingdom alive in their
various homes in exile.

I can feel Gimli's excitement at exploring newly-free Erebor - a
wonder all by itself. What must it have been like to be able to
reclaim one of their old kingdoms after the death of Smaug? And his
feeling of awe and satisfaction and instant, instinctive recognition
when he recognises the image of the three mountains, is tangible.

I like that in addition to describing the symbolical meaning of
Gimli's find, Tanaqui also doesn't forget that Dwarves especially
would acknowledge and find importance in the aspect of the *craft*,
and the use of precious metal and stone, that has gone into the
rendering of the peaks - in all their different forms, both in the
Ered Luin and here in Erebor.

Title: Home Author: Aranel Took Races: Dwarves: Drabbles ID: 533
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-04 16:16:36
It's fascinating to contemplate just how Gimli might have fulfilled
his dream to work in the Glittering Caves, as he had wished to do.

This drabble depicts the care and practicality he and his Dwarven
companions employ within the natural wonder that is their workplace,
and is slowly becoming their home.

I must admit that last line caught me off-guard and made me laugh out
loud: It was such an unexpected departure from the contemplative,
practical tone of the preceding lines; and I can fully imagine the
tone with which it was said.

Title: Young Fanro Makes A Stone Author: Oshun Genres: Humor:
Valar & Maiar ID: 77
Reviewer: pandemonium_213 2008-10-04 20:05:25
Although oshun wrote this as a birthday gift for another, I would have
greedily snatched it away for myself. Fortunately, she has shared it
with all on the SWG.

Tolkien, ever the experimentalist with his story lines, wrote several
versions of the origins of the Elessar, or Elfstone. Here Oshun plays
off the version in which Fanor creates the famous green stone which
he gave to Maedhros who in turn gave it to Fingon. From that point,
history is silent on how the stone would up in Galadriel's possession
although I am sure there a story there somewhere.

Here we watch the journey of invention as Fanro attempts to capture
the unique green light of the sun (err, well, a photon-emitting Tree)
shining through leaves. Oshun not only describes the trials and errors
of the scientific process with accuracy, but also the relationship of
mentor and student. The description of the ambitious young Fanro's
experiments and his burning desire to get his hands on the better
instrumentation in Aul's locked room all ring very true to the
scientific experience in our primary world. I loved her description of
crystallization, couched in "Arda-ized" language.

Lots of other details appealed to me as well, for example, Aul's good
fit into his incarnate form and his laughing to the point of potential
decorporealization. I was especially tickled by the following:

[He bowed and touched his forehead in the manner that Aul, despite
the master's innate lack of care for the details of protocol and empty
formality...]

This certainly fits my vision of Aul -- straight-forward, direct and
-- Valarin nature notwithstanding -- humane. Fanro's thoughts -- [He
knows that I want something] are hilarious! Aul knows him too well,
which is often the case of mentor and student.

Truly a funny and endearing story, and one that holds deep appeal to
me as a scientist and as a fan of both Fanor and Aul.


Title: Another Prometheus Author: Gandalfs apprentice Races:
Cross-Cultural: Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 85
Reviewer: pandemonium_213 2008-10-04 20:43:18
In a crisp one hundred words of fiction, Gandalf's Apprentice (GA)
boils down the key elements of an almost 1500 word non-fiction screed
I wrote last year in which I complained about the depiction of
inventors and technologists in Tolkien's world: they meet bad endings
for daring to delve too deeply into the fount of knowledge [the
province of the gods] and to take pride of possession in their
knowledge and invention.

However, the unnamed historian of [Another Prometheus] offers a
radical counterpoint to the established and seemingly unshakable
beliefs of his students, stating that Fanor's accomplishments and
innovation set the stage for bettering the lives of men. GA's
historian's words imply that Fanor's invention and rebellion not only
contributed to tumult in Middle-earth but also to *progress*.

[Another Prometheus] is reminiscent of [King Elessar's Peace], also a
Fourth Age tale (see GA's "Many Guises and Many Names" at HASA) in
which an elderly man, whose father fought in the War of the Ring, tell
his young grandson that Minas Tirith [is filled with laughter and
gardens and schools of medicine, music, and astronomy. Instead of
wielding a sword, you will make books on Master Falborn's new printing
press. Such are the blessings of King Elessar's Peace."] I'd like to
imagine that the historian of [Another Prometheus] is a leftist
professor on the faculty at one of those schools in the White City!

Many thanks, GA, for the creation of another drabble which shows that
there is a place for us "progressive apes" in Middle-earth.

Title: Sunset Gates Author: Ignoble Bard Races: Dwarves: Drabbles
ID: 342
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-04 21:54:20
What a wonderful piece of misdirection! This drabble carries us
pleasantly along, each new description just reinforces our
preconceptions, until - with perfect set-up - the twist is slipped
neatly under our "radar". The timing is excellent, and I like how it
coincides with Gimli coming closer and finally arriving at his
destination.

I find it truly astonishing just how well the descriptions from "what
we expect" can be transposed to "what we get", how striking the
parallels are (and I'm thinking here especially about Galadriel's
stately farewell scene in Lothlrien).

Gimli's reactions are conveyed very vividly; and I can well imagine
that his emotions mirror those of so many who arrived at the same
destination as he does here - the relief, and joy, and hope.

Title: A Moment in the Morning in Bree Author: Budgielover Races:
Cross-Cultural ID: 731
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-04 22:16:06
A realistic cross-cultural moment, taking a plausible look at the
beginning of the acquaintance of the Hobbits with "Strider".

Aragorn's deliberations are reasonable and show much common sense as
well as his much-needed ability to quickly adapt his demeanor to his
surroundings. The Hobbits' characterisations are equally well-done.

The humour of the situation is all the more effective because of this
solid groundwork and excellent pacing. It reminds me of so many
children, who seem also strangely fascinated by witnessing their
father doing what Aragorn does here.

Msg# 9474

MEFA Reviews for Sunday, October 5, 2008 (Part One) Posted by annmarwalk October 05, 2008 - 20:23:48 Topic ID# 9474
Title: Light of the Westering Sun Author: Dawn Felagund Races:
Cross-Cultural: Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 126
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-05 03:59:00
These scenes do a very nice job of expanding on the Caranthir/Haleth
"'ship", which I have always found to be one of my favorite fanons in
Silmfic. I particularly liked the first and the last ones, as I think
they're very perceptive about the relationship between a passion like
love and wisdom.

Title: Some Seasons Author: sophinisba solis Races: Hobbits:
Post-Ring War ID: 199
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-05 06:32:57
Spoilers!
I don't usually read Hobbit stories unless Aragorn is in them,but I'm
so pleased that the awards tempted me to read this warm hearted and
delightful gem.

I loved the way,Sam, Frodo and Rosie cared for each other through
their cooking and pregnant Rosie's cravings were very true to life.

Most touching was Frodo's appreciation of water,which Rosie
understands somewhat surprisingly. How often we fail to appreciate the
simple things without which,we could not live.

A beautiful story,well worth reading.

Title: Birthday Outing Author: Tanaqui Times: Fourth Age and
Beyond: Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 386
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-05 06:40:41
Spoilers!
Nice to see Aragorn still going strong and enjoying Rangering at
200.What a great way to celebrate day 200!This was one of my
favourites of the drabble a day series.The image of the two hundred
year old King having more energy than either his son or Faramir's
grandson is delicious and gives hope to those of us a little long in
the tooth. This delightful drabble reminded me of a trip out with a
friend oldler than I and her teenage daughter.The teenager was begging
to rest while her mother and I walked on up a hill to enjoy the view.
Barahir reminds me of the young girl and brings back memories of a
happy day out.

I like to think that Aragorn had a happy old age rather than the
somewhat lonely one I sometimes envisage.

A truly delicious drabble to hearted anyone getting older.

Title: Wife of the Thain Author: LA Knight Genres: Romance: Other
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 513
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 12:42:18
The drabble form really helps create this piece, as tidbits are
dropped along the trail for the reader to follow. But it also hampers,
as episodes take on microscopic focus, and slow the story. Still, a
wonderful concept and a good yarn.

Title: A Fitting Occupation Author: Radbooks Races: Men: Pre-Ring
War Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 601
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 12:48:29
Spoilers!
This is a great subject for a gap-filler, nicely rendered. The author
does a great job finding a small moment, a personal story, through
which to imagine how relations between Dwarves and Men might have been
after the establishment of Dain's realm at Erebor.

Title: Aftermaths and Consequences Author: Gwynnyd Times: Fourth
Age and Beyond ID: 268
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 12:53:31
Spoilers!
This is excellent. The great situation of how life might be in Minas
Tirith after the War is well personified in these two unique, but no
doubt, 'mainstreet' characters. The details here are well-imagined and
deep, but never forced and the reader picks them up as supports to the
story, not well interwoven. More chapters from these lives would be
most welcome.

Title: Of Old It Was Not Darksome Author: EdorasLass Races:
Dwarves ID: 70
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 12:57:52
Spoilers!
What I enjoyed about this story was not only the tale it tells of
rebuilding, reclimation, and remembrance, but also how it casts
ripples toward the aftermath of any war or tragedy, when compassion,
mourning and life go hand and hand with death and sweeping away.

Title: Mournful Fords Author: Imhiriel Genres: Drama: Ring War
Drabbles ID: 368
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 13:00:58
Spoilers!
Very fine. I do love it when talented authors find the holes in
Tolkien's story and fill them in. I found it thoroughly appropriate
that while mourning his son, Theoden would wonder at his own
culpability. It is very characteristic, and like any parent to wonder
what they might have done differently.

Title: Cold Be Hand and Heart and Bone Author: Imhiriel Races:
Villains: Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 286
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 13:03:02
Ugh, definitely gives a chill! I was thinking as the ending
approached, 'well, this isn't so creepy'. I was wrong! Excellent.

Title: ...and the sound of a battered heart, beating Author:
Lindelea Genres: Drama: Ring War Drabbles ID: 690
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 13:05:53
Spoilers!
What's so nice about this - and shows the author's talent - is how
just a word or two encompass the whole history of these two
characters. I like that Frodo is depicted here as someone who watched
over his friends, even when they were 'safe'. And the aphorism at the
end is very hobbitish. Nicely done.

Title: Nightfall Author: Jael Times: Second and Early Third Age
ID: 87
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-05 17:27:25
Spoilers!
One has lost his father, one will lose his son, the son who remained
supposedly "safe" back in the camp; between them they will see to it
that the black gates remain open so that the forces camped upon the
Dagorlad can enter in and bring the siege within Mordor itself!

Oh, Jael, you've taken Galion from "The Hobbit" and given him a being,
an identity, and a soul, and I thank you for it.

A marvelous tale, and I feel I was there. Written with heart,
compassion, and a full share of spirit--and then some! Well, well
worth the read!


Title: Baker's Dozen Author: Tanaqui Genres: Drama: General
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 372
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-05 17:48:04
Spoilers!
A messenger rider whose frustration perhaps led to the establishment
of Gondor's own post office; one who must check out the sewage system
for Minas Tirith; the capture of a tomb raider out to make a quick
buck on certain ashes and their alleged properties; a slave-driver
near the banks of sad Lake Nurnen; the tour guide upon the
Pelennor--they are all represented here in this collection of drabbles
examining how many make their livings within Middle Earth.

A marvelous collection, down to the film noir denouement! Tanaqui
again fills corners we didn't realize we wished to explore within
Middle Earth but that we thank her for lighting up for us with her
often witty and always thought-provoking drabbles!

Title: As Close As Author: Dana Genres: Romance ID: 88
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-05 18:29:00
Spoilers!
The response to a challenge, this tale fills it marvelously as we
realize there was a history of mutual attraction between Merry and
Estella that allowed them to come to terms with this arranged
marriage. But as I read it I found some of the Prophet's words running
through my mind:

"Drink from one another's cup, but not from the same cup." "Let there
be spaces between your togetherness."

Gibran would approve of this story, I think.

As far as LOTR goes, I tend to be hopelessly heterosexual, and not
even your writing can coax me into accepting slash between Merry and
Pippin, I fear. The implied acceptance of this state within Estella I
therefore find perhaps disturbing, yet somehow endearing as well. But
I so love when she realizes just how deeply Frodo's leaving has left
her beloved bereft. Thank you for that scene--it moved me more than I
can say.

Title: Meant to Be Author: Pearl Took Races: Other Beings ID: 137
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-05 18:39:39
Spoilers!
Cathleen's Tulip is definitely safe in Pearl Took's hands as we see
her beginnings from her own point of view! So very perfect a creation
for the little pink piglet that serves as Mamma's voice as well as
Pippin's external conscience as he goes about the business of being a
Hobbit lad doing all the things children do as they learn themselves
and their place in the world.

Sweet!

Title: Hammer Author: Aranel Took Races: Dwarves: Drabbles ID: 468
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 18:39:48
It's always fun to see things in new ways!

Title: Gone Amiss Author: Raksha the Demon Genres: Drama: Ring War
Drabbles ID: 44
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 18:41:36
This is a funny one; I'm not sure what to make of it. I like the first
two paragraphs very much, and I like the last lines, but the two
sections go together uncomfortably for me.

Title: Relief Author: Tanaqui Races: Men: General Drabbles ID: 446
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 18:43:06
A yummy image, so far as it goes.

Title: Pirates Ye Be Warned Author: Imhiriel Races: Men: Gondor
Drabbles ID: 353
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 18:44:35
I always enjoy 'Imrahil on the high seas' stories, and this is no
exception.

Title: Second Best Author: Tanaqui Races: Men: Gondor Drabbles
ID: 384
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 18:45:51
This plays nicely on the reader's expectations, and so tells two
stories at once.

Title: Loudwater Author: Adaneth Times: Late Third Age: General
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 63
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 18:47:37
An interesting perspective on the event described.

Title: Wild Swan Author: Tanaqui Genres: Drama: Gondor
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 328
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-05 18:52:37
Spoilers!
I'd always thought Annmarwalk and Imhiriel to be the masters at
drabbling. I've done a few, but cannot match them at all in their
skills at saying so much with so few words.

Then I was introduced to you and your work. What can I say, Tanaqui?
You are a master also, and your series of series are all marvelous!

As for this series of vignettes of Imrahil's life--from the regret
that Denethor and not Thorongil won the love of his sister to the joy
that his grandsons will know only the White Tree blooming--this is
absolutely perfect! The care for motherless Faramir and Boromir; the
sharing of the beauty of the sea....

Yes, perfect!

Title: Dreamscape Author: Tanaqui Races: Dwarves: Drabbles ID: 442
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 19:06:20
This is a vivid image, and an interesting idea linking the dwarf
homelands.

Title: There shall be Mirth at our Meeting Author: Imhiriel
Genres: Humor: Drabbles ID: 377
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 19:08:53
This is a fun drabble, and a nice view of Aragorn during his
errantries. It's nice to think of him there, and imagine the breadth
of his travels leading to that place.

Title: Messengers from the West Author: Jay of Lasgalen Genres:
Drama: Gondor Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 98
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 19:10:39
Spoilers!
I appreciate that you imagined Eowyn comforted in that dark place by
another strong woman of her family, and that that woman encouraged her
to return to life.

Title: A Moment Away Author: Elen Kortirion Races: Men: General
Drabbles ID: 474
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 19:16:07
Spoilers!
I appreciate that you imagined Eowyn comforted in that dark place by
another strong woman of her family, and that that woman encouraged her
to return to life.

Msg# 9475

MEFA Reviews for Sunday, October 5, 2008 (Part Two) Posted by annmarwalk October 05, 2008 - 20:25:12 Topic ID# 9475
Title: Lost Love Author: Tanaqui Races: Cross-Cultural:
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 271
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 19:23:03
Spoilers!
As someone who has also drabbled this subject I appreciated you made
their union something broken by her nature, and not by either fault.

Title: Pulling the Wool Author: Elen Kortirion Races: Men: General
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 95
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 19:28:47
Three nicely linked moments.

Title: Star-songs of the Eorlingas Author: Tanaqui Races:
Cross-Cultural: Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 291
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 19:35:14
Spoilers!
I do love plausible gap-fillers, and this series is two in one, as the
other illuminates otherwise unexplored culture of the Rohirrim, and
moments of Faramir and Eowyn getting to know each other further.

Title: Another Country Author: Tanaqui Races: Men: General
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 438
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 19:37:19
Spoilers!
This is nicely done; in drawing a comparison between Boromir and
Denethor's 'sins' the author seems to forgive them all.

Title: Drawing the Eye Author: Linda Hoyland Times: Late Third Age
ID: 569
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 19:46:32
Spoilers!
This story describes well a pivotal moment which Tolkien bypasses, but
offers not too much more than a fly-on-the-wall perspective until the
end, where the reader gets a terrific payoff. Well done.

Title: On Far Fields Author: Dwimordene Races: Cross-Cultural
ID: 106
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-05 22:27:00
A complex story that gives a sober voice to the human enemy combatants
in the war against Sauron. The depth of detail in the descriptions and
the sensory information give a very evocative picture of his
highly-charged scene; the tension and intensity of the moment are
conveyed superbly (I thought in particular in the moment when the
chant - which was excellent in itself - began).

The Haradrim culture is shown here as no less proud and important for
the people that belong to it than that of their opponents. And Imrahil
shows his fundamental empathy in respecting this. Through his eyes, we
also get a glimpse of the maelstrom of conflicted emotions under the
usually inscrutable surface of Andrahar (and man, does this story
throw into stark relief just how important and *neednful* it was that
shortly afterwards Brand came into Andra's life!).

Dwimordene as ever manages to go deeply into the complex psychological
motivations of her characters, examining minutely the crucible where
ambiguous, convoluted emotions and reasoning mingle uneasily - by
presenting it without spelling it out.

Title: Feet That Wander Author: Linaewen Races: Cross-Cultural
ID: 576
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-05 22:39:51
Spoilers!
Wonderful, engaging characterisation of Tom Bombadil which informs
even the voice of the narrator, which I found a very effective
technique. What I found most impressive is how Linaewen managed to
convey the power Bombadil evidently has, the confidence within himself
even surrounded by dangerous beings, without losing his seeming
simpliciy and inherent cheerfulness.

As always, Linaewen is excellent at bringing Middle-earth's geography
to life in sure and vivid descriptions; and her take on Boromir rings
absolutely true.

This encounter fits comfortably as a gap-filler and I particularly
liked the reference to The Prancing Pony and the missing horses in
Bree. I liked the "episodic feel" it has; on the one hand "just" an
encounter in the wild, while on the other, the readers knows of the
momentuous implications.

Title: A Great Evil Unmade Author: Linaewen Genres: Alternate
Universe: Steward's Family ID: 267
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 23:24:17
Spoilers!
Many have used this particular what if as a starting point for
stories, but no others (that I know of) have found a way to do it
preserving Boromir's honor, nobility and flaws. Well done.

Title: Wild Swan Author: Tanaqui Genres: Drama: Gondor
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 328
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-05 23:31:12
Spoilers!
This is a wonderful multi-faceted portrait etched in drabbles, showing
Imrahil the commander, Prince, Uncle, husband and father. Under
Tanaqui's able pen, all offices become him equally well.

Title: Tree of Knowledge Author: Nancy Brooke Times: Late Third
Age: Gondor Drabbles ID: 172
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-06 00:02:35
Spoilers!
I liked this haunting and unique drabble very much, which turns on its
head the idea of the Tree being in Minas Tirith.Here the true tree is
shown to be that of the line of Isildur which lies hidden in Rivendell
nurtured by Elrond.Denethor understands all too well what the real
tree is.

Msg# 9476

MEFA Reviews for Monday, October 6, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 06, 2008 - 20:41:15 Topic ID# 9476
Title: Old Man Willow Author: Nath Races: Other Beings ID: 314
Reviewer: Dwimordene 2008-10-06 01:32:57
Spoilers!
What a unique twist on the "What if (insert character X) took the
Ring?" scenario! Tolkien's forests are places of both peril and
splendor, faithful to his vision of the trees of Dunsinane walking
into battle. The Ents are fantastic creations, hard to capture, and
the wilder Huorns and atmospheric Old Forest even more so. But Nath
takes up Old Man Willow and gives him a voice and a power that is
appropriate to him.

I love the fact that I can feel the air get heavier, that I can
imagine Old Man Willow's strength spreading insidiously like his roots
through the whole earth, and him being tougher to root out than any
weed. Middle-earth gets a rather stuffy, strangling feel to it as
forests all over the world respond to him and destroy the two-legged
interlopers to their forests... or become fertilizer themselves. The
description of his battle with the Lothlrien trees and their love for
Galadriel was brilliant. The final passage, as, not content to rule
Middle-earth, he turns his thought to the mangroves across the sea,
and the seaweed on the shores, presents us with a vision of Valinor
itself falling to the Ring as the kelp revolts against Ulmo and
spreads rebellion even onto the Valar's shores.

Brilliant AU, Nath, just wonderful! Everyone should give this one a read.

Title: Deliverance Author: Imhiriel Races: Men: Gondor Drabbles
ID: 285
Reviewer: Dwimordene 2008-10-06 01:40:35
Spoilers!
Nice splitting of the verbal hair, there, Imhiriel! A very unusual
perspective, and what a deliverance indeed: deliver me from a certain
success - loved the use of the eagle feather as a herald of salvation.

Title: The Chieftain of the Dunedain Author: Avon Races: Men:
Pre-Ring War Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 623
Reviewer: Dwimordene 2008-10-06 01:44:16
I always find it fascinating to see what people make of the
Halbarad-Aragorn relationship: it's so open. Most writers, myself
included, like to envision them as of an age and so able to in a sense
come of age together; Avon gives Halbarad a twenty year advantage or
so, and injects a definite, proud paternalism in his reception of the
newly returned from elven care Chieftain of the Dnedain. The last
line is just right!


Title: A Fitting Occupation Author: Radbooks Races: Men: Pre-Ring
War Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 601
Reviewer: Dwimordene 2008-10-06 01:50:01
Spoilers!
Oh my! It's so rare to get anything about the Bardings - what a lovely
family drama, all told in 100 word, single-POV chunks. Methinks Baird
is extremely fortunate that his doom-and-gloom father nevertheless has
the foresight to see that forcing his son's talents and character into
a royal, diplomatic mode that just won't fit is asking for disaster.

Of course, Bard's own diplomatic skills had better be as sharp as that
arrow he used on Smaug: if he has to back down on that offer just
because he neglected to secure Dain's agreement until after telling
his son about his plans, it might be the end of a beautiful friendship
between kingdoms.

Very enjoyably, and I am sure all [The Hobbit] fans will appreciate these.

Title: One Last Wish Author: Dawn Felagund Times: First Age and
Prior: House of Finwe ID: 323
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-06 05:49:04
Spoilers!
A sad and beautiful, but not easy, story of conflicting passions. Dawn
Felagund brings these fated lovers/consorts to life beautifully,
Nerdanel's sorrow and regret and hunger for the husband whose final
desire she could not grant are heart-rending. I like the way that even
after seven sons and a marital rift, Feanor and Nerdanel still need
each other rather desperately.

Title: An Ordinary Woman Author: Dawn Felagund Times: First Age
and Prior: House of Finwe ID: 32
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-06 06:12:36
Spoilers!
An interesting take on the beginning of the legend of Luthien,
narrated by the amused, cynical Finrod. The idea of Luthien's
extraordinary loveliness being much exaggerated is worth exploring;
here, she is an intelligent and restless young princess of usual but
not jaw-dropping Elven beauty. I loved the ending, where Finrod meets
an exhausted, half-starved mortal boy wandering at the outskirts of
Doriath, and helps him enter Thingol's realm, thinking that the kid
might make a good friend for young Luthien - had me laughing, a little
sadly, given Finrod's ultimate fate.



Title: All That Remained Author: Allee Genres: Drama: Featuring
the Noldor ID: 155
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-06 09:00:06
Spoilers!
Grief wanes at last, and hope--and Hope--remain as Gilraen comes to
terms with her husband's death, and Elladan at last does the same with
his mother's absence.

A beautifully written look at the destructive side of grief drawn from
familial experience, poignant and delicately written. An honor to
reread this, and to again see the healing at last begin for the young
widow and the son of Celebrian, and to see this blended family come to
acceptance of what is--for today, at least. And I love Elrohir's
advice; ["Take a deep breath. Repeat."] So apt!

Title: Thoughtful Company Author: EdorasLass Genres: Humor: Gondor
ID: 16
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-06 09:20:15
Spoilers!
Between them Gandalf and Faramir solve the question of how it is that
a dragon might carry its plunder back to its lair. A wonderful
conversation overheard by Nanny, and a gentle glance into the
relationship Denethor's younger son developed with the Grey Pilgrim.
One finds oneself wondering just how much Mithrandir foresaw of what
awaited the boy and his family once he came to manhood.

Poignant and gentle.

Title: Reparation Author: Isabeau of Greenlea Races: Men ID: 296
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-06 09:49:38
Spoilers!
He'd failed his lord by not recognizing the threat of an assassin, and
his honor and ward by not behaving in an honorable manner with his
newest esquire. Now it is time to make things right, and to see the
perception and skill the esquire showed properly rewarded.

A wonderful addition to the tale of Andrahar of Dol Amroth.

Title: Waterloo Author: Lady Bluejay Genres: Romance: Gondor ID: 158
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-06 17:53:41
Spoilers!
This is such a fabulous story and I am glad to have the opportunity to
reread it. From the first paragraph, the reader is treated to
wonderfully imagined details and observations that both elaborate on
and fit seamlessly into Tolkien's text. As Tolkien's war experience
informed his work, here his work is recast against the backdrop of
many women's experiences bravely doing what needed be done in many
wars. This Lothiriel is complete with strengths and weaknesses, gritty
realism and girlish fantasy, someone transformed by her experiences
while still remaining herself and retaining her history. I am sure,
when I stop to think about it, that an extraordinary amount of work
must have gone into creating this, but while I am reading I am so
fully immersed in the story I only know what's right in front of me,
much like Lothiriel herself is depicted here.

Title: The Blessing Author: Golden/Pearl Took CoAuthors Genres:
Longer Works ID: 511
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-07 00:42:05
Spoilers!
As a special ed teacher of many years' standing and one who's been
concerned for the rights of those with disabilities, the idea that
Pippin might have developed epilepsy as a result of his injuries while
buried under the troll is enthralling. The frustration of trying to
understand what's happening, the fear of first the unknown in dealing
with it and then the fear of rejection by others, the struggles to
find the best treatment for the individual involved--it is all here.
Denial is followed at last by acceptance; understanding supplants
superstitious dread. Pippin begins even to find the positive aspects
of his condition.

And through it all he finds support from the one who has ever watched
over his family and lineage. With the help of a small angel and a
second in the shape of a golden dog who helps watch for oncoming
seizures and helps him calm and center after one, he learns to cope,
as do those with him, and particularly Merry, Frodo, and Sam. It's a
time of experimentation as they try to find the proper medication and
dosages for him, try to help him learn to deal with the new realities
of his situation, including the fact he can not serve as Aragorn's
personal guard any more, which is a deep blow.


Having been through this process with former students, my late
husband, current clients--it is all too realistic, particularly as we
see the condition slowly stealing much of Pippin's natural confidence
away; but on the converse side we see him learning new wisdom and to
trust the Took Sight that becomes clearer as if to help compensate for
what he's lost.

It is to be hoped that once he gets home, and particularly after he's
become Thain, Peregrin Took will work to help folks of many
disabilities find acceptance rather than ostracization, and he will
help the Shire realize the often magnificent gifts many of these hold.

Well researched and thoughtful--and hope-full as well. Very much worth
the read.

Title: Sing All Ye People! Author: Raksha the Demon Times: Late
Third Age: Gondor ID: 249
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-07 00:50:38
Spoilers!
To learn that the Great Eagles could speak as do Men, much less sing
out in glorious joy, must have been a bit of a shock to the citizens
of the capital of Gondor; but here we see, through Faramir's eyes,
just how much they are intended to be messengers to the mortal lands
from the Valar, and most particularly from the great Lord Manwe Sulimo
himself. How amazed and awed indeed they must have felt, those who
stood upon the walls of Minas Tirith to hear this news, particularly
after the uncertainty to date, which must have become almost
unbearable during that brief moment of dread when the Ring claimed
Frodo Baggins and all had been nearly lost--only for them all to be
saved by grace shockingly guised as Gollum!

A most uplifting work, and one that offers a great deal of joy along
the way. Imagery is flat-out superb, and the communication of
Faramir's perception and appreciation of the Eagle's message--and of
those who sent it--is excellently done. I found myself wishing I could
stand there with them and sing as did the people of the White
City--but who would not, having been called to do so by the Creator's
own surrogates and the messengers they employ?

This may be short but there's no question it is definitely inspiring.

Title: The Queen's Gift Author: Queen Galadriel Races: Elves:
Other Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 697
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-07 01:00:16
Spoilers!
Queen Galadriel has managed to look into the thoughts of our beautiful
Queen Arwen as she bestows her generous gifts on Frodo Baggins. No,
Frodo does not believe he needs them, but only time will prove whether
or not that is true. For the Queen sees deeply and with the foresight
of her people, and realizes as Frodo does not as yet realize just how
deeply into his soul and heart the scars run. And what else can the
love she and her husband bear for this precious, honored, and
so-deeply hurt friend give to him beyond the hope of a fuller healing
than he can know within the Mortal Lands? The white gem and the
promise--it is to be hoped--of passage to the west where her own
mother went for succor after her own dreadful wound--it is little
enough recompense for what Frodo has sacrificed for the safety of all
of Middle Earth with no thought to any reward possibly being due to
himself afterwards.

This is a very thoughtful, poignant tale, as we see the rift in the
Ringbearer's soul through the eyes of the Peredhel Lord's daughter,
and appreciate just how much concern she feels for this one whose
sheer determination in the end brought her the love and fulfillment
she now knows. It is a gentle expansion on the book scene, and
definitely well worth the read.

Recommended with love.

Title: A Matter of Ill Reputation Author: Lily Races: Hobbits:
Childhood ID: 210
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-07 01:07:55
Spoilers!
Oh, I, too, have thought that part of the reason why Frodo was keen to
change abodes to live with Bilbo was because he'd been the subject of
bullies and taunts, including being taunted as a sissy, however it
might be that sissies were referred to in the Shire. "Taller than some
and fairer than most"--that was how Gandalf described him to
Butterbur; and if that fairness made him appear vulnerable and thus
fair game for the bigger, less sensitive lads of Buckland, such a
trick might well have been practiced on him of stealing his clothes
while swimming and allowing him to have to find his way home naked and
embarrassed.

This is a marvelous tale of how that bullying was carried out and how
Frodo, with Merimac's help and inspiration, managed to get his own
back at the one who'd most recently led the taunting. A humorous story
and a just punishment.

Lily's feel for the rustic life is marvelous and superbly drawn, as is
her understanding of the psychology of her characters. What is done by
Frodo to his tormenter is so exquisitely chosen to pay him back for
what he's done! One can smell the hay being gathered in and hear the
laughter of those who are surprised to find themselves pleased to see
the bully get his own back with interest.

I hope others will read and enjoy it as much as I have, and that it
will give you some laughs along the way.

Title: I Can't Author: Antane Races: Hobbits: Friendship ID: 24
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-07 01:13:35
Antane is a young writer who's been involved in writing fanfiction for
a couple years now; this work, which looks at the encouragement Frodo
Baggins and Samwise Gamgee give one another over the years of their
friendship, is one that is emotionally satisfying and touching she's
yet written. It is one that comes full circle in the end, as two close
friends share a moment of ease and bliss, no matter what has happened
in between.

Antane's writing has become increasingly mature and skillful since she
joined the community of those who write such fanfic as ours, and this
is a shining example of how much she's grown as a writer. Images are
sharp and clear, each incident related well chosen to show off the way
in which Frodo and Sam each encourages the other to persevere past the
extremes of frustration he knows, each assisting the other to
accomplish the task before him, from Sam's childhood through the
intervening years and the dread days of the quest itself. And the
final image of the two of them together, as was the initial one, is
enough to make anyone smile with satisfaction and joy to see the two
of them together.

The poignancy is indeed moving; the joy at beginning and end
delightful and uplifting. I find I cannot recommend it enough.

Msg# 9477

MEFA Reviews for Tuesday, October 7, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 07, 2008 - 20:08:21 Topic ID# 9477
Title: Tarnished Ivory Author: Yavie Feels Pretty Genres:
Adventure: Incomplete ID: 464
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-07 01:50:49
Spoilers!
A definitely might-have-been beginning in which Yavie has managed to
deftly catch each member of the Fellowship as it floats down the river
in the elven boats, each feeling the tension growing and most
realizing that Boromir is the epicenter of the growing storm. Boromir,
who is polite and controlled, who threatens no one, whose comments are
quiet but consistent. Why is it Elf, Dwarf, and Ranger together all
feel as uncomfortable about Frodo's decision to travel on this route
as do Frodo and Sam themselves?

Characterizations are superbly done, each character caught perfectly.
The mood is exquisitely portrayed and the narration and dialogue are
both well done and well balanced. I only hope she soon continues on
with the story--I want to see how it ends!

Title: By Ship or Grave Author: Larner Genres: Poetry: Hobbits
ID: 618
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-07 02:01:11
Spoilers!
A very Frodo-ish poem, written with Larner's usual elegance and a
touch of angst. I like the repetition of [by ship or grave]; the
phrase is haunting and is nicely woven into the theme of Frodo's
greater journeys through and beyond life.

Title: Recognition Author: Dwimordene Times: Late Third Age:
Gondor Drabbles ID: 481
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-07 02:29:03
Spoilers!
There's something in the distinction between "feminine" (or
["womanly"] in the language of this drabble) and "skilled" that I
found really interesting. I know that in academia too often we are
asked to choose between the two; and I suspect the same would be true
of most other professions -- perhaps never moreso than within
Middle-earth. Ioreth, as a fellow woman-artisan, would be in a unique
position to recognize this in Eowyn. there is an interesting tension
in the fact that Eowyn is about to sacrifice her art for (as she says,
she'll ["be a shieldmaiden no longer, nor vie with the great Riders."])

Even without these intriguing and deep thoughts, I found this a vvery
soothing character moment, and a nice gapfiller for Eowyn's healing
process so that she could accept Faramir's love. Beautiful writing
throughout, and a thoroughly worthwhile read.

Title: Love at First Sight Author: Gwynnyd Races: Elves: Other
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 432
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-07 02:55:41
Spoilers!
When I first saw the summary, I expected something quite different!
The ending came as a surprise, but a pleasant one, and it strikes me
as very fitting to Feanor's personality that this should be his first
love. Nice work, Gwynnyd!

Title: Regarding Ents Author: PipMer Races: Hobbits: Post-Ring War
ID: 525
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-07 03:12:06
I quite enjoyed Sam's confusion over what exactly the ents were,
whether they were walking trees or what. Given what Halfast said (in
canon) about the trees on the northern marches, it's a natural
confusion, and one that I'm sure has plagued many Tolkien readers.
(Sometimes I wonder whether Tolkien *himself* was confused, or at
least had his opinion evolve.) And it was told in a most hobbity way,
that took into account both the familiarity and difference in social
standing between the different characters. Very well done.

Title: Meddling Author: Dwimordene Times: Mid Third Age: Eriador
ID: 695
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-07 04:03:29
Spoilers!

Dwimordene writesof two rarely paired LOTR characters - Gandalf and
Halbarad.

She's right on the mark with the characterisation and speech patterns
of Gandalf; who is as wise as he is in LOTR, and tempers his mission
with compassion when he can.

I loved the conversation between the two - the old, world-worn wizard
and the Ranger who is still in his youth, angry and yet not lacking
respect nor forbearance. Gandalf's conviction that Aragorn needed to
leave, that he was fated for a higher purpose than to be the
Dunedain's chieftain is conveyed in just the right wizardly style.



Title: Out of Memory and Time Author: Shireling Genres: Drama:
Hurt/Comfort ID: 136
Reviewer: Cathleen 2008-10-07 14:11:30
Spoilers!
Shireling makes a Middle-earth-shattering return with "Out of Memory
and Time"! It had been quite awhile since readers were treated to a
new story by this remarkable author and I was thrilled to see this
complex and captivating story from her. It is a riveting tale from
start to finish, the characters well developed and well written.
Minnow's appearance at the beginning of the story sets the stage for
mystery and suspense and leaves the reader wondering just who he is
and what is going to happen next. The graphic scenes are well-executed
and appropriate to the tale. Shireling carries her readers away on a
journey they won't forget, and the ending is bittersweet, yet hopeful,
culminating in the handfasting and return of Faramir with his "Golden
Lady" where they are received back into the King's service with
heartfelt joy. I hope we see a great deal more from this author.

Title: Sing My Worth Immortal Author: Perelleth Races:
Cross-Cultural ID: 168
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-07 16:53:45
Very amusing and imaginitive. Elves have a song and a story for
everything, don't they?

Title: Child of Hope Author: Galadriel Races: Men: Steward's
Family ID: 97
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-07 17:00:05
A charming portrayal of the young Boromir and his family.

Title: Black is the Color of My True Love's Hair Author: Marta
Genres: Romance: Gondor ID: 405
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-07 17:15:07
Spoilers!
Normally I shy away from stories with slash content but, in this case,
the feelings of Denethor and Aragorn add an interesting and fresh
dimension through which the author examines the relationship and
rivalry between these two strong men.

Title: The Last Summer Author: Golden Races: Hobbits ID: 143
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-07 17:21:50
This is a lovely story, very well rendered: not too cutesy, not too
dry; not too wordy, not too terse; not too sentimental nor too plain.
The author walks a tight rope here to give the reader an experience of
depth and breadth. Nicely done.

Title: The Nag Author: celticbard Races: Men: Steward's Family
ID: 347
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-07 17:35:40
This situation you've chosen does a great job at bringing out all your
characters, not just those present, but those mentioned as well.

Title: One Step More - The Heroism of Frodo Baggins Author:
ConnieMarie Genres: Non-Fiction: Character Studies ID: 395
Reviewer: dkpalaska 2008-10-07 21:50:50
ConnieMarie has produced a tender, lovely tribute to a True Hero,
wherein she deftly explores the undeniable impact that this individual
can have upon the psyches of others.

The author entertainingly defines just what qualifies as heroism - a
heroism, in particular, that most of us can relate to. (I easily
connected with her examples; we obviously come from the same
generation. *g*) She follows this up with a movingly-illustrated
dissection of Frodo's specific qualities that speak most clearly to
her - and by extension, to any of us who experience suffering and
setbacks in life.

It's all tied together with an effective and clear writing style that
I enjoyed tremendously on its own merits.

Title: In Search of Stillness Author: Bodkin Races: Elves:
Mirkwood Elves ID: 704
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-07 23:54:12
Spoilers!
Very visual and sensuous writing. The descriptions of the
rain-dripping leaves and the squelching mud makes me almost smell the
fresh, clean air and the green of the forest. There is also a delicate
balance between showing the characters' emotions and motives without
making it too obvious; instead teasing it out in hints and subtext.

The obvious friendship, companionship and the level of comfort Legolas
and Gimli have towards one another is conveyed wonderfully. There is a
give-and-take here in that both know why they have come to the forest,
but both pretend it's no small matter, and at the same time Gimli
makes it clear that he is concerned while Legolas indicates he
appreciates the consideration. What I found very effective was how in
the course of the story it becomes tangible that Legolas is able to
gradually relax at least a little.

I also liked the details of camping and making-do in the wild. And
Thranduil's cameo was a lovely touch to end the story on.

One of my favourite lines: ["the unwrapping of the forest in spring,
the warm hum of summer, the generosity of autumn, followed by the
sleep of winter."] Succinct yet lush.

Msg# 9478

MEFA Reviews for Wednesday, October 8, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 08, 2008 - 20:47:07 Topic ID# 9478
Title: Lessons from the Mountain Author: MithLuin Races: Elves:
Incomplete ID: 221
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-08 04:10:54
Spoilers!
A tortuous, intricate, and spellbinding story about the afterlife of
the sons of Feanor, as seen through the troubled eyes of Maedhros.
Mithluin captures the pride and sorrow of Feanor's heir; and his
determination to help his kindred even after the striving of their
mortal lives is accomplished rings very true. I am very much looking
forward to seeing how this epic, ambitious, tale, which boasts
appearances by the Valar, Miriel, Nerdanel, and other Elves, plays out.

Title: For What I Wait Author: Dawn Felagund Genres: Alternate
Universe: Angst/Tragedy ID: 125
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-08 07:06:33
Spoilers!
Oh, how emotional a story--this AU of Feanor outliving the last of his
sons as Maglor finally leaves his life behind, his last spoken
thoughts of his brother Maedhros.

So poignant and painful as we watch the slow decline of Macalaure and
the maddened grief of his father at the end!

Superbly written!

Title: Broken Star Author: pandemonium_213 Races: Villains:
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 54
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-08 07:12:47
Spoilers!
Oh, so chilling, this look at two former colleagues and friends,
mentor and disciple, now with all the veils removed as Annatar is
proven to be Sauron the Deceiver. And when calls on former affections
and relationships fail to net the interrogator the information he
desires, he reaches for....

A most horrible and plausible and compelling look, told in brief yet
definitely fully enough, at the revelation of Sauron's true self to
Celebrimbor, there at the end. Well written.

Title: Lost and Found Author: Branwyn (Lady Branwyn) Times: Mid
Third Age ID: 23
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-08 07:20:12
Spoilers!
Ah, the desire of children to please, and the wonderful, sometimes
illogical logic they can use. This look at child-Faramir helping
Gandalf find a missing scroll, perhaps during the visit in which he
found Isildur's own description of the Ring, is so delightful. My
favorite line is his description of a certain portion of the archives
when he says,[It smells like words]. How perfect a description!

Title: Call of the Wild Author: annmarwalk Genres: Romance:
Drabbles ID: 94
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-08 07:25:59
Spoilers!
Reading another of Ann's drabbles is like finding a jewel lying among
the pebbles on the beach--perhaps small, but brilliant, full of light
and fire, worth far more than its size might imply.

This response of Morwen to her first glimpse of Thengel is just
perfect, as is his estimation of her to which a link is given.

As always with Ann's stories, a joy and delight to read.

Title: Name Calling: Group Identity and the Other among First Age
Elves Author: Angelica Genres: Non-Fiction ID: 322
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-08 16:20:04
This essay presents an interesting look at the way different group
names reflected the relationships between those varying groups. Given
Tolkien's interests in linguists, I can totally see this aspect
providing interesting clues to how he viewed the different groups of
elves. As someone who is not the best-versed in elvish lore, I found
it to be a good window into that world, and think that other readers
who like reading about the First Age but perhaps are also a bit
overwhelmed by it would find this essay to be an interesting read.

Title: The Wedding Gift Author: annmarwalk Genres: Romance: Other
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 40
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-08 16:47:09
Spoilers!
Ai, but this is lovely! It is a touching tale of intimacy between two
dwarfs, yet in a way the love between the two of them is universal.
You don't often get that with the rarer races, but Ann manages it. I
don't mean to suggest that Nandi and Gloin are un-dwarvish or generic,
because they are; Gloin's secret work crafting something and then
giving it with hardly a word, and also Ann's description of "[the rich
veil of (Nandi's) hair, her beard, his lips caressing that delicate
curve of neck and shoulder]" - there is a reference to a distinct
characteristic of dwarvish femininity, yet you could almost miss it,
it is so well integrated into descriptions that might be applied to
Eowyn or Celebrian or Rose Gamgee just as easily. The use of details
like "[Chalcedony and carnelian, gold-flecked crystal, shimmering
mother of pearl]" also gave this ficlet a nice touch of realism. Dwarf
fics won't want to miss this one, but I think it would be enjoyed even
by people who don't often read about Durin's sons.

Title: Between Childhood and Coming of Age Author: Dreamflower
Races: Hobbits: Friendship ID: 141
Reviewer: Virtuella 2008-10-08 21:22:45
Spoilers!
An utterly charming story with many amusing moments. To name but a
few: The cutest baby competition, the nighshirts under the bed, Pippin
in the row with the lasses at the dance, the embarrassing realization
that one's parents do indeed *ahem* and the priceless episode with
Frodo setting up Sancho to dig in his cellar. The last line gave me a
big giggle.

What I like most, though, is the how you have given Pippin such a kind
and generous young lady at his side here, who is sensitive enough not
to hurt his feelings and still tells him nothing but the truth.

Title: Pippin's Secret Author: shirebound Races: Hobbits:
Friendship ID: 599
Reviewer: Virtuella 2008-10-08 21:28:04
A very original little story. Yes, I can imagine this episode happening.

Msg# 9479

ADMIN – Spoilers in reviews Posted by Tanaqui October 09, 2008 - 16:44:46 Topic ID# 9479
Hey guys,

Here is your weekly admin post. This week, we're looking at spoilers in
reviews. Some people love spoilers; others try to do everything they can
to avoid them  and that means they'd prefer not to stumble across them
in MEFA reviews for stories they hope to read and review themselves.

First of all, what are spoilers? They're typically significant plot
details, but they can include anything an author might not want the
reader to know in advance (or which the reader would prefer to be
surprised by), such as the identity of one of the protagonists in the
story.

Including spoilers in reviews isn't against the MEFA rules, but we do
ask you to warn readers if you do include a spoiler. You can do that by
checking the box for "Spoilers" at the bottom of the review form, just
under the area where you enter the text of your review. This means the
review will be marked with the text "Spoilers!" in red, so that readers
can choose whether or not to read it. (You can see an example of what
such a review will look like at
http://www.mefawards.net/MEFA2008/spoilers.png.) Apart from this,
reviews marked as containing spoilers will be displayed in exactly the
same way as all other reviews.

Another way you can make sure people reading reviews don't accidentally
get spoiled is to set the status of the review containing the spoiler to
"hidden" rather than "final". That way, it won't be displayed until
after MEFA voting closes, but it will still be counted when the votes
are added up without you needing to do anything else.

What should you do if you see a review that you think contains spoilers
for the story being reviewed, but which isn't labelled with a spoiler
warning? In that case, email the MEFA administrator at mefasupport at
mefawards.net. Please put the word "spoilers" in the subject line and
include the reviewer's name, the story ID #, the text of the review, and
why you think it contains spoilers. The administrator will investigate
and add a spoiler warning if appropriate.

You'll find FAQs about spoilers at
http://www.mefawards.net/MEFA2008/index.php?page=FAQvoting#vot_16 and
http://www.mefawards.net/MEFA2008/index.php?page=FAQvoting#vot_17.

Happy (spoiler-free) reviewing!

Tanaqui
(MEFA Tech Support)

Msg# 9480

MEFA Reviews for Thursday, October 9, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 09, 2008 - 20:01:05 Topic ID# 9480
Title: Parting Gifts Author: Fiondil Races: Cross-Cultural:
Post-Ring War ID: 452
Reviewer: Nieriel Raina 2008-10-09 02:14:43
Spoilers!
Few authors can write a death scene like Fiondil can, and Parting
Gifts has to be one of the best. Even through written from Gimli's
perspective, the reader can feel Legolas's emotion. The thoughts of
the dwarf in his last hours are moving and yet simple. Very dwarvish.
There are even some surprise visitors and the old dwarf learns that
even the Valar care about his elven friend, told only as Fiondil can
tell it. Wonderfully done!

Title: The Misty Month Author: Le Rouret Races: Cross-Cultural:
Post-Ring War ID: 454
Reviewer: Nieriel Raina 2008-10-09 02:20:16
Spoilers!
Few authors can write Tolkien's characters with such depth, capturing
them completely and yet writing them with complete originality! Le
Rouret is one of these authors. Written with archaic language and a
strongly medieval Middle-earth, the tale is more engaging than one
might at first think. The slight AUness only gives depth and richness
to the tale, set several years after Return of the King. But the best
part of the tale is the characters themselves! Rarely does Eowyn shine
in fan fiction as she does in Le Rouret's works, and The Misty Month
is no exception! This is Eowyn's story, and as a woman and a mother,
she has my complete sympathy. And Legolas, that gallant Green Knight,
is given a challenge most unexpected: to deliver Eowyn's child while
stranded in the middle of no where! Filled with subtle humor,
realistic detail and lots of drama as well, The Misty Month is a great
read! One that I indulge in over and over as I do with all the Green
Knight Tales. Marvelously done!

Title: The Search Author: rhyselle Genres: Poetry: Late Third Age
ID: 501
Reviewer: Nieriel Raina 2008-10-09 02:22:14
It's rare to see a story or poem from Gollum's point of view, and
rarer still for the author to capture Gollum's personality and voice.
Rhyselle exceeds in this with a wonderful poem about Gollum's search
for the Ring. Well done!

Title: Tales of the Eldandili Author: Alassiel Genres: Drama:
Incomplete ID: 502
Reviewer: Nieriel Raina 2008-10-09 02:24:16
A promising beginning to an intriguingly original tale! While most of
the characters are Original Characters, they are easy to get to know
and very realistically done. The plot is only just beginning to
unfold, but already the reader is drawn in and wanting to know what
comes next. I look forward to seeing this tale develop further. Well done!

Title: Even Legends Fade Author: Star In Ruin Races: Elves ID: 555
Reviewer: Nieriel Raina 2008-10-09 02:27:28
Spoilers!
Few authors can capture the grief of another when told from the eyes
of an observer. Star in Ruin has accomplished this very well with her
story about the grief of Arwen and Legolas after the death of Aragorn,
told through the eyes of a guard of the Citadel. Short, but moving and
very well written. Well done!

Title: The Last Throw Author: nau_tika Genres: Drama ID: 556
Reviewer: Nieriel Raina 2008-10-09 02:33:27
Spoilers!
Nautika has a great story telling talent which she uses on her
characters with great skill as they tell the other characters as well
as the reader a tale. In The Last Throw, we are told the tale of the
Battle at the Black Gate by a soldier who went there and back again
and has returned to tell his family the tale. Complete with childish
questions and a great blending of book and movie verse, The Last Throw
is told all from the teller's dialogue giving the facts with great
care and originality. A wonderful tale!

Title: Twentynine White Horses Author: Jael Races: Elves: Mirkwood
Elves ID: 557
Reviewer: Nieriel Raina 2008-10-09 02:44:38
Spoilers!
A delightful story by a true queen of Mirkwood fiction! No one writes
Thranduil and Legolas the way Jael does, and I have to say, her
version is my favorite! Written in response to a discussion about what
happens when an elf loses a tooth, Jael has crafted a short, but
thoroughly engaging tale of Legolas learning a lesson, losing a tooth
and receiving a gift that is truly moving. As always, Nestalind takes
far too much pleasure in her healing skills, much to Legolas's
annoyance. And Thranduil shows Legolas that a son is never to old to
be treated as a son. Thoroughly engaging, full of great humor and yet
still holds that key element of seriousness always inherent in Jael's
Thranduil. This is one worth reading again and again. But then, so are
all her tales.

Title: Too Many Rangers Author: Larner Races: Hobbits ID: 116
Reviewer: Virtuella 2008-10-09 18:11:33
I know nothing about earlier drafts for LOTR, but confronting a
dropped character with the finished product is such an original and
entertaining idea. I enjoyed this very much.

Title: The Six-Fingered Glove Mystery Author: shirebound Genres:
Mystery ID: 522
Reviewer: Mews1945 2008-10-09 23:09:07
Spoilers!
This ficlet is charming in its simplicity and gentleness, as two
imaginative hobbit lads and a curious pup discover a very strange
glove. Frodo and Sam speculate as to where such an unusual item could
have come from, and eventually decide it must have belonged to a
dwarf. They also manage to spook themselves a little, resulting in Sam
running for home and Frodo lighting extra lights and locking the door
of Bag End. Then Bilbo comes home and tells Frodo the real story of
the Six Fingered Glove.

Title: The Ribbon Author: Gentle Hobbit Races: Hobbits:
Hurt/Comfort ID: 336
Reviewer: Mews1945 2008-10-09 23:17:13
Spoilers!
In this gentle tale, Frodo performs a service for Elanor that leads to
Rosie asking him about his missing finger, and to her surprise, Frodo
is quite willing to tell her how it was healed by a healer in Minas
Tirith. The dialogue between them is so loving and filled with
understanding that I felt Frodo received comfort from it as well as
being able to express his gratitude to that healer.

Title: Riding the Waves Author: Claudia Times: Fourth Age and
Beyond ID: 211
Reviewer: Mews1945 2008-10-09 23:21:23
A magical drabble that shows vividly that Frodo has healed while in
the undying land. The imagery is beautiful, the emotion uplifting.

Title: Fait Accompli Author: Ignoble Bard Genres: Mystery ID: 381
Reviewer: Jael 2008-10-10 00:48:57
Spoilers!
Of all of Ignoble Bard's body of work, this story is the masterpiece.
Stylish, erotic, and darkly disturbing in its vision, the author shows
us Legolas's fight to recover his memory as he finds himself in the
power of a mysterious, terrifying being.

Like many others who have read this story, I found myself to be very
surprised at the ultimate revelation of Legolas's captor and seeming
tormentor. All the clues might seem to point toward the obvious Mordor
connection. Yet, in the end, his situation is revealed to be even more
dire, since even death cannot release him.

And yet, I come away with the hope that Legolas's battle is not with
his capricious captor, but with his own conscience. If he can face his
past and forgive himself for his own perceived failings, he may
ultimately achieve freedom and healing.

I definitely recommend this story for lovers of elegant slash and for
lovers of masterful prose in general.

Msg# 9481

Re: [MEFAwards] ADMIN – Spoilers in reviews Posted by Agape 4Rivendell October 09, 2008 - 21:29:05 Topic ID# 9479
I am very sorry to see so much time and effort go to something so mundane.
It is a tempest in a teapot.

The global economy is going to hell in a handbag, the elections are turning
into a farce, and I am still unemployed after three month's of serious
searching. People are losing their homes, their jobs, their hope.

And you want me to look for spoilers because it might 'spoil' someone's
enjoyment of a story??? What about all the movie trailers that show you the
end before you've even seen the movie. I will never forget when Peter
Jackson showed Gandalf the White in the trailers for Two Towers. Now, he's
dead, but not. And so anyone who hadn't read the books... Oh well, I'll stop
ranting.

I will not spend my time 'policing' this site for spoilers.

On Thu, Oct 9, 2008 at 5:39 PM, Tanaqui <tanaqui@blueyonder.co.uk> wrote:

> Hey guys,
>
> Here is your weekly admin post. This week, we're looking at spoilers in
> reviews. Some people love spoilers; others try to do everything they can
> to avoid them and that means they'd prefer not to stumble across them
> in MEFA reviews for stories they hope to read and review themselves.
>
> First of all, what are spoilers? They're typically significant plot
> details, but they can include anything an author might not want the
> reader to know in advance (or which the reader would prefer to be
> surprised by), such as the identity of one of the protagonists in the
> story.
>
> Including spoilers in reviews isn't against the MEFA rules, but we do
> ask you to warn readers if you do include a spoiler. You can do that by
> checking the box for "Spoilers" at the bottom of the review form, just
> under the area where you enter the text of your review. This means the
> review will be marked with the text "Spoilers!" in red, so that readers
> can choose whether or not to read it. (You can see an example of what
> such a review will look like at
> http://www.mefawards.net/MEFA2008/spoilers.png.) Apart from this,
> reviews marked as containing spoilers will be displayed in exactly the
> same way as all other reviews.
>
> Another way you can make sure people reading reviews don't accidentally
> get spoiled is to set the status of the review containing the spoiler to
> "hidden" rather than "final". That way, it won't be displayed until
> after MEFA voting closes, but it will still be counted when the votes
> are added up without you needing to do anything else.
>
> What should you do if you see a review that you think contains spoilers
> for the story being reviewed, but which isn't labelled with a spoiler
> warning? In that case, email the MEFA administrator at mefasupport at
> mefawards.net. Please put the word "spoilers" in the subject line and
> include the reviewer's name, the story ID #, the text of the review, and
> why you think it contains spoilers. The administrator will investigate
> and add a spoiler warning if appropriate.
>
> You'll find FAQs about spoilers at
> http://www.mefawards.net/MEFA2008/index.php?page=FAQvoting#vot_16 and
> http://www.mefawards.net/MEFA2008/index.php?page=FAQvoting#vot_17.
>
> Happy (spoiler-free) reviewing!
>
> Tanaqui
> (MEFA Tech Support)
>
>
>
> ------------------------------------
>
> Visit our website: http://www.mefawards.net/MEFA2008/Yahoo! Groups Links
>
>
>
>


--
Life's been good to me so far!!! Praise God!


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

Msg# 9482

Re: Re: [MEFAwards] ADMIN – Spoilers in reviews Posted by heartofoshun@aol.com October 09, 2008 - 22:11:25 Topic ID# 9479
In a message dated 10/9/2008 9:29:23 PM Eastern Standard Time,
agape4rivendell@gmail.com writes:

I am very sorry to see so much time and effort go to something so mundane.
It is a tempest in a teapot.

The global economy is going to hell in a handbag, the elections are turning
into a farce, and I am still unemployed after three month's of serious
searching. People are losing their homes, their jobs, their hope.

And you want me to look for spoilers because it might 'spoil' someone's
enjoyment of a story??? What about all the movie trailers that show you the
end before you've even seen the movie. I will never forget when Peter
Jackson showed Gandalf the White in the trailers for Two Towers.


I'm sorry, Agape, you made me giggle. My feelings exactly, but I have been
beater back by readers nearly in tears over the question and irrate writers who
apparently spent endless hours of thought trying to build suspense (needless
to say, I take a pick at the end whenever I get tense, nervous or just
restless, doesn't mean I don't enjoy the stories). I am trying to respect those
feelings by using the spoilers tag. I refuse to consider details in the books
spoilers however. This is fanfiction.



**************New MapQuest Local shows what's happening at your destination.
Dining, Movies, Events, News & more. Try it out!
(http://local.mapquest.com/?ncid=emlcntnew00000001)


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

Msg# 9483

Re: [MEFAwards] ADMIN – Spoilers in reviews Posted by Súlriel of Menegroth October 09, 2008 - 22:47:27 Topic ID# 9479
I find it delightful that there is still a small corner of the world that
worries about such things in the midst of all the trouble. Such simple and
'mudane' things have saved my sanity through what has been a rough year in
RL.

Sulriel

On Thu, Oct 9, 2008 at 9:29 PM, Agape 4Rivendell
<agape4rivendell@gmail.com>wrote:

> I am very sorry to see so much time and effort go to something so mundane.
> It is a tempest in a teapot.
>


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

Msg# 9484

Re: ADMIN – Spoilers in reviews Posted by Marta October 09, 2008 - 23:08:07 Topic ID# 9479
Hi Agape,

I hear you on RL being really hard for a lot of people right now. I know
that that for some people, RL struggles can make little issues like
marking spoilers seem petty. So I understand why you might be frustrated.

For a lot of people (like myself), fandom is an escape. It's a break
from the harsh real world where we can enjoy hobbits and elves and hunky
Gondorians, if just for a half-hour. That's why I try really hard not to
let RL impose on fandom, as much as I can. I'm sure you can appreciate
how important these havens can be. If fandom (or the MEFAs in
particular) ever get to be more stress than they're worth, you're
welcome not to participate or to participate only as much as you'd like.
I'd appreciate it, though, if you'd be careful of other peoples' need
for a break from RL. :-)

I don't think Tanaqui asked anyone to "police" reviews. At least that's
not the impression I got. As a MEFA volunteer, I can safely say that no
one has to read through all the reviews, or report every mistake they
see. But if you *do* see something and want to take the time to let us
know so the volunteers can look at the problem, the announcement tells
you how to do that.

The spoiler warning is a new feature this year, and I know it's made me
feel like I can review more freely without ruining someone else's
reading of the story. (Thanks to the volunteers who made it possible,
btw.) Of course, if a review with spoilers isn't properly marked, it's
not the end of the world. Reviews with spoilers were always unmarked in
the past. If you see any you'd like to report, now you know how; but if
this isn't an area you want to get involved with, that's okay too.

TTYL,

Marta

> In a message dated 10/9/2008 9:29:23 PM Eastern Standard Time,
> agape4rivendell@gmail.com <mailto:agape4rivendell%40gmail.com> writes:
>
> I am very sorry to see so much time and effort go to something so mundane.
> It is a tempest in a teapot.
>
> The global economy is going to hell in a handbag, the elections are turning
> into a farce, and I am still unemployed after three month's of serious
> searching. People are losing their homes, their jobs, their hope.
>
> And you want me to look for spoilers because it might 'spoil' someone's
> enjoyment of a story??? What about all the movie trailers that show you the
> end before you've even seen the movie. I will never forget when Peter
> Jackson showed Gandalf the White in the trailers for Two Towers.

Msg# 9485

Re: ADMIN – Spoilers in reviews Posted by queeniejosephine October 10, 2008 - 20:38:05 Topic ID# 9479
I could not agree more,Sulriel. Thank Goodness, we can escape to M-e
for a while to help keep our sanity during these difficult times.

A big thank you to everyone who writes great stories and the admin
here who help us have a little fun in this contest,

Linda

--- In MEFAwards@yahoogroups.com, "Slriel of Menegroth "
<sulriel@...> wrote:
>
> I find it delightful that there is still a small corner of the
world that
> worries about such things in the midst of all the trouble. Such
simple and
> 'mudane' things have saved my sanity through what has been a rough
year in
> RL.
>
> Sulriel
>
> On Thu, Oct 9, 2008 at 9:29 PM, Agape 4Rivendell
> <agape4rivendell@...>wrote:
>
> > I am very sorry to see so much time and effort go to something so
mundane.
> > It is a tempest in a teapot.
> >
>
>
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
>

Msg# 9486

MEFA Reviews for Friday, October 10, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 10, 2008 - 20:47:33 Topic ID# 9486
Title: A Woman in Few Words: The Character of Nerdanel and Her
Treatment in Canon and Fandom Author: Dawn Felagund Genres:
Non-Fiction: Character Studies ID: 107
Reviewer: dkpalaska 2008-10-10 05:40:28
In this well-researched and well-presented essay, Dawn Felagund has
gleaned many excellent and enticing facts about Nerdanel from both the
Silm and HoMe. There's actually a little more available about this
character than I realized, but still - there's a real dearth of solid
detail concerning Feanor's wife in any of Tolkien's posthumous
publications.

Nonetheless, as the author aptly points out, she is a popular figure
in the fandom given how little she shows up in the actual books. Dawn
demonstrates that the impression of Nerdanel's popularity is
statistically true. (Although nice to see the back-up info, the
Appendix is anti-climactic after the entertaining essay; I might have
preferred it as a second chapter, so it could be more easily skipped
by the uninterested.)

Even better, Dawn gathers together in one place all the "canon" facts
about this character, each well-referenced. The discussion points flow
smoothly from one to the next in the author's intimate and
conversational style.

Title: Galdor: An Elf By Any Other Name.... Author: Marta Genres:
Non-Fiction: Character Studies ID: 475
Reviewer: dkpalaska 2008-10-10 05:41:24
I think the first thing that I noticed about this essay is the
wonderful tone that Marta strikes throughout: informative but
humorous. The introduction may be the author's personal recounting of
how a Galdor Nuzgul latched on to her ankle, but it also speaks
directly to the heart of every single LotR fan(atic) that has been
completely and repeatedly captivated by the Master's writings.

I found that - as always with this author - the speculations are
believable and well-substantiated, and the writing clear even when
dealing with several issues. Marta leads the reader through a
delightful exercise in logic as she teases out a backstory for Galdor.

It struck me immediately how symptomatic Galdor is of the immense and
incomplete backdrop that Tolkien constructed and set his Hobbit and
LotR stories in. He had a complex and ever-changing epic world that
sat behind the smaller epics he published within his lifetime. Just
the minor glimpses we see of Gondolin or Earendil lend a depth and
fullness to the surface story, enhanced in part because Tolkien had so
much of that backdrop already figured out. In thinking about it, it is
little surprise a minor character like Galdor would be no different:
seemingly a one-off appearance, yet likely with much background
thought in Tolkien's mind.

Title: Aul the Smith Author: Oshun Genres: Non-Fiction: Character
Studies ID: 530
Reviewer: dkpalaska 2008-10-10 05:41:55
[Aul the Smith] is an informative and enjoyable summary of one of the
mighty among the Valar. In fact, as the Vala who had the greatest
influence upon the far-travelling and realm-ruling Noldor, I think one
could argue that he is quite possibly the most significant player
concerning the unfolding history of Middle-earth itself.

The author uses a light touch throughout, with some delightful
descriptions of different individuals and events; this is definitely
far from being dry reference material. I feel the essay could easily
have managed even longer discussion, with more direct quotes and
references. The quotes that are used are pertinent and blend very
smoothly into the narrative.

No doubt part of my relishing this essay is due to my personal bias -
being an engineer myself, I can relate to much of Aule's passion for
discovery and love of working with his hands. Besides, who couldn't
adore such a practical guy?

Title: Utlie'n Aur Author: Nieriel Raina Genres: Drama: General
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 163
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-10 06:16:00
Spoilers!
I enjoyed this ficlet about the reaction at Rivendell to the fall of
Sauron.I can well imagine the Elves,especially such as Glorfindel and
Erestor would sense the momentous event. How wonderful that the child
they raised helped to bring it about!

Title: Things as they were in all the days of my life Author:
Tanaqui Races: Men: Pre-Ring War Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 393
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-10 07:03:41
Spoilers!
A lovely and well-written collection of drabbles focussing on the 26th
Ruling Steward of Gondor. An extra delight is the presence of Hurin of
the Keys as the friend of Denethor's youth - who knew that young
Denethor had a mischievous streak a mile wide? Tanaqui makes it seem
plausible.

The word-picture of Denethor playing practical jokes on Thorongil, and
being frustrated by the Northerner's impermeable self-control, is
marvelous. And the glimpse of the young Finduilas using an interesting
criteria to narrow the field of potential suitors is charming. (I can
just see Denethor doing it, too; you know he wouldn't rest until he'd
mastered the task!) But it is the last drabble that is the most
haunting, a tale of grief after grief that turns a once vital man into
stone and then provides, in that harrowing last line, a last and fatal
crack.

Msg# 9487

Re: ADMIN – Spoilers in reviews Posted by PGF October 10, 2008 - 21:29:17 Topic ID# 9479
I'm sorry you're having such a hard time, Agape.

Perhaps we are all in for some hard times. All the more reason, in
my opinion, to enjoy the MEFA experience.

I am not sure that we are being pushed to hunt for spoilers in the
reviews. Frankly, I rarely notice; since I'm too busy reading the
review, to see if there are spoilers; I think on some level I expect
there to be spoilers. I almost always use the 'Spoiler' button when
I write MEFA reviews...

I hope that things improve in your RL, Agape. Don't lose hope.


Raksha



<<<<--- In MEFAwards@yahoogroups.com, "Agape 4Rivendell"
<agape4rivendell@...> wrote:
>
> I am very sorry to see so much time and effort go to something so
mundane.
> It is a tempest in a teapot.
>
> The global economy is going to hell in a handbag, the elections are
turning
> into a farce, and I am still unemployed after three month's of
serious
> searching. People are losing their homes, their jobs, their hope.
>
> And you want me to look for spoilers because it might 'spoil'
someone's
> enjoyment of a story??? What about all the movie trailers that show
you the
> end before you've even seen the movie. I will never forget when
Peter
> Jackson showed Gandalf the White in the trailers for Two Towers.
Now, he's
> dead, but not. And so anyone who hadn't read the books... Oh well,
I'll stop
> ranting.
>
> I will not spend my time 'policing' this site for spoilers.
>
>
> > Visit our website: http://www.mefawards.net/MEFA2008/Yahoo!
Groups Links

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Msg# 9488

MEFA Reviews for Saturday, October 11, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 11, 2008 - 20:36:48 Topic ID# 9488
Title: When Trouble Came Author: Lily Races: Hobbits ID: 109
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-11 02:44:19
Lily has quite an affinity for Buckland, and for its Master, Saradoc
and his brother Merimac. This is a wonderful Troubles fic, showing how
the Bucklanders survived that dreadful year. There is much angst, but
also a good deal of the hobbit courage that reveals itself ["in a
pinch"]. I especially like the way the two brothers manage to help one
another over the inevitable doubts. There are several memorable OCs as
well. Truly a very absorbing story, and a likely scenario for the gap
in question!

Title: O Kheled-zram fair and wonderful! Author: Imhiriel Races:
Dwarves: Drabbles ID: 354
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-11 02:44:33
This is really a very evocative and romantic drabble, and very Dwarven
in its tone as well. I find myself wanting to know a little more of
this couple.

Title: Only Water in Your Veins Author: Michelle Races: Men ID: 154
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-11 03:01:53
Spoilers!
A harrowing, gorgeous and very credible story of Thorongil's ill-fated
foray into the desert of Harad. Thorongil's agonizing struggle is
powerfully written, as is his encounter with a wise and merciful Southron.

Title: Loving a Book Lover Author: Avon Genres: Romance: Drabbles
ID: 721
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-11 04:01:58
*snerk* This drabble has a lovely understated quality, and portrays
Faramir's bookishness quite well - not to be missed by F/E lovers.

Title: Courage Author: annmarwalk Genres: Humor: Gondor ID: 41
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-11 04:02:15
This is certainly a new twist on courage, and I quite like it; I can
see a dwarf reacting in just this way to a challenge, first with
reluctance but then with the refusal to be shown up. fellowship fans
won't want to miss this one.

Title: Coming Home to Crickhollow Author: calanthe11 Genres:
Romance ID: 445
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-11 04:02:31
Spoilers!
This is probably one of my favorite post-quest hobbit stories. Set
after Merry and Pippin settle in Crickhollow, it offers a nice glimpse
into what their lives would have been like. There are some really
stirring images of how the two hobbits might have been changed by the
quest, and what pressures they might face from their families on their
return. I was actually pleasantly surprised by how convincing and
natural this felt given that I usually struggle to accept the pairing,
but it was very well-written and believable.

Yet it's more than *just* a romance, it takes a really nice view at
how a sexual relationship between these two hobbits might have played
out beyond the bedroom. I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys
hobbits with emotional depth and resilience - it's all of that, and
has some nice touches that make Merry and Pippin still feel
distinctively hobbity. Having tried to walk a similar line in my own
fic, I know how difficult it is. Calanthe pulls it off admirably.

Title: Of First Impressions and Old Friends Author: Dreamflower
Races: Cross-Cultural: Frodo and Faramir ID: 146
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-11 04:16:59
Spoilers!
Dreamflower picks a wonderful frame for this tale-within-a-tale - that
of Sam and Frodo's sojourn at Henneth Annun and their meeting with
Faramir. She explores the first meeting of Faramir and Gandalf through
memories, particularly Frodo's memory of Boromir's account of how his
younger brother met the wizard. The recollection of Gandalf's saying
something to Bilbo that he also said to the child Faramir is a quite
skilfull touch; it binds Boromir's memories to Frodo's, and emphasizes
the role that the wizard played in the lives of those they love.

Cleverly and sensitively written.

Title: The Other Author: Dana/Lindelea CoAuthors Genres: Horror
ID: 27
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-11 08:46:46
Spoilers!
Lindelea and Dana have between them written a perfect horror AU, a
tale in which the curse of the Witch-king falls from time to time on a
descendant of the survivor of the battles against Angmar; this curse
has now struck Merry, perhaps due to his actions against the
originator of the curse. But to see that curse broken, Pippin must
take a drastic action--unless the King is able to find a counter to it!

The suspense is marvelously supported by the structure of the telling,
and with Lindelea's feel for the Tooks particularly we have a tale
that shows all the characters off to best advantage. Definitely a tale
worth the reading, and apt to the current season (I read it in the
run-up to Halloween!) Read and know an enjoyable shiver!

Title: Pippin and Tulip's Excellent Adventure Author: Cathleen
Times: Mid Third Age: Eriador ID: 595
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-11 08:51:11
Spoilers!
It's one of those extraordinary days for Tulip as she finds herself
visiting all parts of the farm there near Whitwell, and not
necessarily from her preferred perch on her lad's shoulder. But it's a
day for adventures and unexpected meetings with the various animals,
it appears....

Another charming look at life within the Shire as experienced by
wee-Pippin and his knitted friend! Makes me wish I could visit and
spend a few days in the farmhouse! Heh!

Title: Silenced Author: Illwynd Genres: Horror ID: 31
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-11 20:49:24
A very creepy ficlet which might just have happened! You conveyed the
aura of creeping menace brilliantly.

Title: Philosophia to Philomythus and Misomythus Author:
pandemonium_213 Genres: Poetry ID: 50
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-12 00:52:34
I enjoyed this thought provoking poem very much.As a lover of the
arts,science is a mystery to me,yet the older I get the more
fascinating I find it.I've a friend who says it spoils things to know
why only some holly trees have berries and what makes a rainbow,but I
it deepens my wonder to know.

Title: Child of Hope Author: Galadriel Races: Men: Steward's
Family ID: 97
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-12 00:57:21
Spoilers!
A lovely story about the young and playful Boromir and his dreams of
the hero of old as well as his little brother.The end had a lovely
twist when he encounters Thorongil and thinks a king should be like
that.Alas that the young lad eventually grows up not to want the king
and die before he sees his return.

Msg# 9489

The archive? Posted by Barbara Rich October 12, 2008 - 17:01:18 Topic ID# 9489
Hi--

Maybe someone can tell me how to access it? I can find and access the lists
of previously nommed fics, but I know we have an archive with all the old
reviews, too, don't we? It's probably somewhere kind of obvious, but I
don't seem to be able to locate it.

I wanted to check something in last year's reviews.

Dreamflower


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

Msg# 9490

Re: The archive? Posted by debnear@comcast.net October 12, 2008 - 17:06:10 Topic ID# 9489
Hi, Barbara!

Right when you go to mefawards.net. there's an archive link .. I believe the second link on the page. It should take you right there!

-------------- Original message --------------
From: "Barbara Rich" <aelfwina@gmail.com>
Hi--

Maybe someone can tell me how to access it? I can find and access the lists
of previously nommed fics, but I know we have an archive with all the old
reviews, too, don't we? It's probably somewhere kind of obvious, but I
don't seem to be able to locate it.

I wanted to check something in last year's reviews.

Dreamflower

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]




[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

Msg# 9491

Re: The archive? Posted by Marta October 12, 2008 - 17:26:00 Topic ID# 9489
Hi Barba,

PipMer is right that you can reach it from the main mefawards.net page
by clicking on "MEFA Archive". You can also reach it directly at

http://mefawards.net/mefa-archive/

Once you get there, you can look at the database by story title, story
author, or the year ("Award Results.") The easiest way IMO is usually by
story title if you remember the exact title, or by author if you don't.
Anyway, once you find the story, click the "Story Details" link. This
will bring up a screen showing basic story info, the award won (if any),
and -- most importantly, for you! -- any reviews the story received.

HTH,

Marta

Barbara Rich wrote:
>
>
> Hi--
>
> Maybe someone can tell me how to access it? I can find and access the lists
> of previously nommed fics, but I know we have an archive with all the old
> reviews, too, don't we? It's probably somewhere kind of obvious, but I
> don't seem to be able to locate it.
>
> I wanted to check something in last year's reviews.
>
> Dreamflower
>

Msg# 9492

Re: The archive? Posted by Barbara Rich October 12, 2008 - 17:37:34 Topic ID# 9489
Thanks! I never see that main page, because I always go straight to the
login page!

But now I have the archive bookmarked! Thanks again!

B.

On Sun, Oct 12, 2008 at 5:06 PM, <debnear@comcast.net> wrote:

> Hi, Barbara!
>
> Right when you go to mefawards.net. there's an archive link .. I believe
> the second link on the page. It should take you right there!
>
> -------------- Original message --------------
> From: "Barbara Rich" <aelfwina@gmail.com <aelfwina%40gmail.com>>
> Hi--
>
> Maybe someone can tell me how to access it? I can find and access the lists
> of previously nommed fics, but I know we have an archive with all the old
> reviews, too, don't we? It's probably somewhere kind of obvious, but I
> don't seem to be able to locate it.
>
> I wanted to check something in last year's reviews.
>
> Dreamflower
>
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
>
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
>
>
>


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

Msg# 9493

Re: The archive? Posted by nau\_tika October 12, 2008 - 18:37:04 Topic ID# 9489
I'd wondered about this, too. Thanks for the info!

nautika

--- In MEFAwards@yahoogroups.com, debnear@... wrote:
>
> Hi, Barbara!
>
> Right when you go to mefawards.net. there's an archive link .. I
believe the second link on the page. It should take you right
there!
>
> -------------- Original message --------------
> From: "Barbara Rich" <aelfwina@...>
> Hi--
>
> Maybe someone can tell me how to access it? I can find and access
the lists
> of previously nommed fics, but I know we have an archive with all
the old
> reviews, too, don't we? It's probably somewhere kind of obvious,
but I
> don't seem to be able to locate it.
>
> I wanted to check something in last year's reviews.
>
> Dreamflower
>
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
>
>
>
>
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
>

Msg# 9494

MEFA Reviews for Sunday, October 12, 2008 (Part One) Posted by annmarwalk October 12, 2008 - 20:13:48 Topic ID# 9494
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 ely, Ar-Pharazn 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!

Msg# 9495

MEFA Reviews for Sunday, October 12, 2008 (Part Two) Posted by annmarwalk October 12, 2008 - 20:15:53 Topic ID# 9495
Title: BRIDGE: P Valaraucar ar Nmier Author: Fiondil Races:
Other Beings ID: 415
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-12 19:52:18
This was a fascinating story which provided me with much food for
thought.I'd never really thought about what happened when Gandalf
"died" before. It seems even the wise have lessons to learn. Another
delightful buried treasure I've unearthed at MEFA.

Title: O Merry Mine Author: Larner Races: Hobbits: Hurt/Comfort
ID: 636
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-12 19:55:29
So much is written about the bond between Frodo and Sam that the bond
he shared with the other Hobbits is often forgotten or
overlooked.Larner brilliantly redresses the balance in This was very
touching story about the life long and beyond bond between Merry and
Frodo. I was blinking away a tear at the end.moving story of the times
the two Hobbits shared together.

Title: Scholarship Author: Raksha the Demon Races: Men: Steward's
Family ID: 43
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-12 21:51:48
A lovely father-and-son scene. You can feel the love and trust between
those two.

I like the straightforwardness of the conversation; there is hardly
any awkwardness there, only honesty and openness. It's funny and
endearing (and, you think, typical) that Faramir and Elboron use the
opportunity to not only talk about the subject matter delicately, they
also use it as a lesson to speak about the Rhnin culture and
language! And the hints Raksha gives of these are very persuasive.

My favourite thing was that the story was told from Faramir's
perspective: in addition to giving his insightful observation and
advice, it gives a very concise, aware picture of the surroundings and
the circumstances of this story.

Title: Expert Treasure Hunter Author: Tanaqui Races: Villains:
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 447
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-12 22:00:26
I like the tone of this drabble; Smaug seems somehow gleeful and
looking forward to a real treat, as if he is selecting some favourite
food. It's not so much a greedy obsession as is most often described
when talking about a dragon's lust for gold - here it is cast in a
more positive light.

Despite this somewhat lighter tone, the snake-like nature and the
power - and the inventiveness in pursuit of his desires - of Smaug is
captured well.

Title: Answering the Call Author: docmon Genres: Drama ID: 340
Reviewer: Virtuella 2008-10-12 23:18:41
The concept of this is very interesting. In the execution, I felt, it
varied. The first and last chapters were the strongest.

Title: Beggar's Night Author: Branwyn (Lady Branwyn) Genres:
Humor: Shire ID: 15
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-13 00:39:25
Spoilers!
This was very cute.I loved the thought of them all in costume going
trick or treating or rather the M-e equivalent.I liked testy Gandalf
and see Eowyn found another excuse to dress in men's clothing! Legolas
and Gimli as an Ent and a dragon were priceless!.

Title: Thicker Than Water Author: Noliel Genres: Drama: Featuring
the Noldor ID: 541
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-13 00:46:32
Spoilers!
The old adage indicated by the title certainly proves true here as
Celebrimbor accidentally learns of his father's death through parts of
a conversation overheard. This leads to other memories--memories of
his father in the same situation, grieving as his brothers castigate
him for seeking out their father's ring.

Incidents used in illustrating Celebrimbor's memories are well chosen
and well told; the story itself is compelling; I found myself wishing
to grieve alongside the son of Curufin.

Title: I Married for Love Author: Ford of Bruinen Genres: Poetry
ID: 661
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-13 00:52:33
A gentle, mournful examination of the marriage Indis knew, and the
grief born of it--and the gladness nonetheless it was done.

A few problems with wording, but the form of the poem is still
beautiful and well conceived.

Title: Black is the Color of My True Love's Hair Author: Marta
Genres: Romance: Gondor ID: 405
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-13 00:55:08
You make this hard: I love the writing and hate the premise.

Msg# 9496

MEFA Reviews for Monday, October 13, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 13, 2008 - 20:20:14 Topic ID# 9496
Title: In Search of Stillness Author: Bodkin Races: Elves:
Mirkwood Elves ID: 704
Reviewer: nau_tika 2008-10-13 01:20:38
The author is very skillfully in presenting the Legolas and Gimli
friendship. I had not considered the sea longing in comparison to the
seasons. I especially liked the description of Thranduil. All this
story needs is a sequel!

Title: Mournful Fords Author: Imhiriel Genres: Drama: Ring War
Drabbles ID: 368
Reviewer: nau_tika 2008-10-13 01:27:09
Short, but sweet. Theoden paid a high price for his 'weakness' and
this story illustrates his awareness of that very well.

Title: A Cat in King Elessar's Court Author: agape4gondor Races:
Cross-Cultural: Friendship ID: 66
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-13 03:29:47
Spoilers!
A delightful new perspective on the last days of Steward Denethor and
Aragorn's ascension. Agape writes the cat poignantly, with wisdom and
loyalty and grace.

Title: In Good Company Author: foxrafer (csevans8) Races:
Cross-Cultural: Friendship ID: 20
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-13 03:39:04
Spoilers!
A lush paean to the beauty of Ithilien and the goodness of friendship;
as foxrafer skillfully draws these four unlikely individuals - elf,
hobbit and the two men - together. The descriptions are beautiful.

Title: Good King Elessar Author: Dreamflower Races:
Cross-Cultural: Friendship ID: 2
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-13 04:03:36
Spoilers!
A charming story of Fourth Age King Elessar and young Frodo Gamgee;
very seasonal, catching the flavor of both Fourth Age northern
Middle-earth and the Yule season. Dreamflower proves again why she is
one of the best hobbit fanfiction writers.

Title: Amara Author: Claudia Genres: Mystery ID: 236
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-13 05:46:50
A most enjoyable tale for Halloween.I especially enjoyed the
friendship between Faramir and Frodo. The dream/vision/ghost was very
vivid and haunting!

Title: Fulfilling Oaths Author: Nieriel Raina Times: Multi-Age
ID: 332
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-13 06:47:52
This story really brought home to me the courage of Finrod.It was a
nice idea Aragorn sending the Ring to Valinor back to him with
Legolas,yet I felt sad such an ancient heirloom would not pass to
Eldarion and remain in the world of Men.A touching story which held my
attention throughout,though I only read the Simarillion once and tend
to get the names mixed up!

Title: Rivendell International Airport Author: Primsong Genres:
Humor: Elven Lands ID: 345
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-13 08:39:01
Spoilers!
A wonderfully clever and amusing story which sets the Fellowship in a
modern airport,yet somehow manages to remain true to Tolkien's
characters.A witty satire on airport security and looking"right" to
get through it.It would indeed be quicker to walk like they do in the
book! Three cheers for Legolas here!

Title: Moved to Pity Author: Imhiriel Genres: Drama: General
Drabbles ID: 366
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-13 08:42:07
Spoilers!
A beautiful drabble concerning the reaction of the Valar to Luthien's
choice. I especially liked the idea that her destiny was woven into
the future of Middle-earth.Luthien was indeed a great heroine.

Title: That Fate Them Bore Author: Cara Loup Races: Hobbits:
Incomplete ID: 476
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-13 13:26:15
Spoilers!
A well-written series of stories in which we follow Frodo from his
realization that he must leave the Shire into the Marish, not quite to
Farmer Maggot's farm.

The writing has a three-dimensional feel to it, as if we were
accompanying Frodo, Pippin, and Sam through the Woody End, trying to
avoid nettles and thorns with them, as if we walked by their sides
through stands of thistles, as if we hid transfixed while the cries of
the Nazgul shuddered through the air.

Each chapter is told from a different one's point of view. We see
Pippin's quicksilver mind, Sam's steadiness, Frodo's grief and
unwillingness to lead others into danger, the fascination all feel for
Gildor's folk....

Beautifully and evocatively written; and I cannot wait until the
series is continued.

Title: Lock Out Author: pippinfan88 Races: Hobbits ID: 307
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-13 13:34:25
Spoilers!
The assignment to write a story focused on an original Hobbit saying
is well done indeed, particularly as Pippin and Diamond find
themselves locked out of the Crickhollow house and wish they had one
of those useless locksmiths to hand.

Humorous and a bit suggestive. A cute chuckle!

Title: Tales of the Eldandili Author: Alassiel Genres: Drama:
Incomplete ID: 502
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-13 13:37:05
A most interesting beginning to the tale as we see modern-day
elf-friends preparing to fight the darkness of our day, and learning
more about Arda and its background.

A provocative beginning that I'm waiting impatiently to see continued.

Title: Oathbreakers Author: Thundera Tiger Times: Late Third Age
ID: 470
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-13 17:35:17
Spoilers!
They hear the whispering of those who broke their oath long ago, and
see another tempted to do the same. What can they do but pray that the
one tempted should be led to the RIGHT choice for the circumstances?

The mood and uncertainty are well conveyed, as is the dreariness of
the place and the frustration of the two overheard. A perfect gapfiller.

Title: Lost and Found Author: Branwyn (Lady Branwyn) Times: Mid
Third Age ID: 23
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-13 18:12:16
This is a really original twist on the "bitties" subgenre of fanfic. I
love young Faramir that feels like he could grow into canon!Faramir
(and this story certainly qualifies on that count), but I love even
more the fact that this story involved more than just the usual
suspects without feeling like a stretch in the least. I'm also now
wondering whether (adult) Faramir realies the importance of this
afternoon spent in the archives. It's an endearing moment in which
both characters really shine, and lighthearted even in light of the
reader's knowledge of future events. Really nice work, Branwyn.

Title: The Lowest Circle Author: Tanaqui Races: Elves: Drabbles
ID: 449
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-13 18:12:44
Spoilers!
There's a special torture in losing track of days - in not being able
to sleep at night and be awake during the day, and so having a sense
that time moves on. I can see the tortured elf in this drabble feeling
like the horribleness of the "now" was all there was, making the
degradation that much worse. That the memory of Varda's lanterns (as I
tend to call the stars :-D) has become part of the torture is sad
indeed, but fitting. Nice job, Tanaqui; this drives home the horrors
endured by those first orcs without getting too explicit, somehow
making it all the more affective.

Title: Rebirth Author: Aranel Took Genres: Poetry: Late Third Age
ID: 471
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-13 18:12:59
Spoilers!
This poem reminded me very much of Carl Sandburg's poem "The Grass"
[http://www.bartleby.com/104/78.html%5d, of how nature covers the scars
left by humanity. That theme seemed very fitting, both for a tanka
(typically focused on nature) and for a Tolkien fanfic poem given his
thoughts on technology vs. nature. Very nicely done, Aranel; I enjoyed it.

Title: Stewards Author: Tanaqui Times: Late Third Age: General
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 450
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-13 18:15:23
As a Denethor lover, I find myself as much drawn to tales of his
faults as his strength, if they are done well, and this drabble
definitely qualifies. It's a strong portrait of Gandalf, to be sure,
but by foiling him with Denethor, Tanaqui shows us just how Denethor's
taint by [mere politics] affected him. I was reminded of how Shire
maps didn't portray lands much beyond the borders of the Shire; here,
Denethor's focus on Gondor is reactive rather than from lack of
knowledge or power, I think, and that gets very well at the heart of
the matter. This is a very nice character moment for both stewards,
told with the author's usual economy of words and grace of language.

Title: Men of the Twilight Author: Elena Tiriel Genres: Romance:
Drabbles ID: 209
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-13 19:16:00
Spoilers!
What a delightfully original twist on Faramir's description of the
Rohirrim as Men of the Twilight! I had always thought of it as a
derogatory term, suggesting that Rohirrim were not as "high" as the
Dunedain (and still suspect it can be read this way), but it also fits
with their warrior's stoicism that light would have a hard time
reaching them. Sort of similar to a mountain valley with steep walls
on either side, so the sun only shines in a few hours a day. Really,
this is a very nice view of the beginning of this courtship, and
speaks of a promising beginning for both Faramir and Eowyn.

Msg# 9497

MEFA Reviews for Tuesday, October 14, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 14, 2008 - 20:38:22 Topic ID# 9497
Title: Aftermaths and Consequences Author: Gwynnyd Times: Fourth
Age and Beyond ID: 268
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-14 02:02:07
Spoilers!
A wonderful short fic looking at the how the period of adjustment
after the end of the War of the Ring affected ordinary people, and
managed to bring two together, one of whom never realized there might
be an interest. I find I do hope that in time they find it is more
than just a business arrangement!

Title: The Warmth of Morning Author: Spindle Berry Times: Late
Third Age: Gondor ID: 148
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-14 02:07:45
I love the writing and, unfortunately, dislike the relationship
described. But the writing deserves recognition--it is good, clear,
cogent, and emotionally pleasing.

Title: Burdens Author: Meril Genres: Drama: General Fixed-Length
Ficlets ID: 219
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-14 02:14:58
Spoilers!
Those possessions carried by the Elves who followed Feanor and his
sons to Middle Earth help to define them, but also serve as reminders
of what they left behind, what they hope to see in the future--if they
are among the survivors, of course.

Sad, thoughtful, hopeful, angry--each item has its own story to tell,
its own revelation to give about its bearer.

Well told, and each object and the story and emotions about it is well
chosen. A marvelous series.

Title: The Nightingale Author: Maeve Riannon Times: First Age and
Prior ID: 404
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-14 02:34:03
Spoilers!
How is Dior to truly love his grandmother Melian, whom he finds
inexplicable. She plays with the children, bakes cakes, allows herself
to be painted as a dragon so as to play Glaurung, sings
exquisitely.... She is so different than her daughter! And she
explains, not that he truly understands now.

A sad thing story, for Melian realizes she has had to place
limitations on how she is perceived in order to be part of this world,
and she sees so much that time will bring that her folk cannot. And
her husband, in receiving his desire, has brought upon himself and
their people the beginnings of a terrible doom.

I find myself grieving with the Maia and wishing to play with the
children, as well. The moods of both Dior and Melian are both well
conveyed, as is the hope that Dior will be able to be more than he is now.

Title: A Great Cause for Concern Author: Alassante Races:
Cross-Cultural: Post-Ring War ID: 682
Reviewer: Virtuella 2008-10-14 02:44:57
Indeed, this is a question that needed to be addressed! I agree with
your reasoning that Galadriel would speak up for Gimli and that the
friendship he has brought between elves and drwarves is the crucial
point. I think the end would have been stronger without the very last
paragraph.

Title: In This These Days of Glory Author: Dana Races: Hobbits:
Incomplete ID: 640
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-14 08:30:06
Spoilers!
Having done my version of this time from the Brandybuck perspective,
it was wonderful to see it from the Took side of the equation. The
lads have disappeared from the Crickhollow house, leaving a secretive
Fatty Bolger behind. Was it bandits, or did Lotho have something to do
with the disappearance of Frodo Baggins and his cousins and gardener?
Notes were left that weren't particularly informative; more is learned
from what Freddy shared with Berilac. But to find out WHY he chose to
share with Merimac's son was thought-provoking!

Very intriguing to see how so much of this is from Pervinca's point of
view. Now, to see more of it written! (Nudge, nudge.)

Title: Risk Assessment Author: pandemonium_213 Races: Elves ID: 665
Reviewer: Moreth 2008-10-14 11:19:15
I realised this hadn't been nominated elsewhere and, being an
interesting interaction between different groups and ideas within your
version of Ost-in-Edhil, I really thought it should be added.

Also the baths - I love the baths (well, the whole plumbing system
would fascinate me for hours, of course!). They are one of the
memorable parts of your elven architecture and city planning, and
serve to give your writing a unique feeling.

As a short piece, it includes many people you write about in more
detail in other stories and it explores the way of life during a
period of the Second Age that is rarely considered. The technical
discussion on exactly how lembas is made, and the 'scientification'
behind it is most pleasing!

The key for me, however, is the interaction between the characters.
You manage to portray both the subtle tension between social groups,
and the positive interaction of the same, in a way that makes the
Ost-in-Edhil community live and breathe. It's great to see a
philosophical debate on 'belief' vs 'proof' played out in the
roman-style baths - who could ask for more?

Title: A Woman in Few Words: The Character of Nerdanel and Her
Treatment in Canon and Fandom Author: Dawn Felagund Genres:
Non-Fiction: Character Studies ID: 107
Reviewer: Moreth 2008-10-14 11:43:40
An excellent overview of what is and (perhaps more importantly) is not
known about Nerdanel from the published works. The essay draws a
portrait of a talented and fascinating woman, one who clearly deserves
the interest of the fandom!

I must admit I rather enjoyed the Appendix, with the detailed data
collation from different fan sites. The only thing it is missing is a
set of graphs!

Title: The Craft of the Elven Smith Author: Larner Times:
Multi-Age ID: 1
Reviewer: Moreth 2008-10-14 13:50:52
Spoilers!
I very much liked the portrayal of Nerdanel as a talented smith and
gem-crafter in her own right. The idea of re-using elements from
previous items (Fanor's gift and the coat of mail) was particularly
appropriate to the overall theme of healing and renewal.

The Valar, who are always difficult to depict convincingly, interact
with main character with compassion and wisdom, but remain distant and
rather intimidating.

A well thought out story with very pleasing detail and some enjoyable
little surprises.

Title: A Midsummer Day's Dream Author: Raksha the Demon Genres:
Drama: Gondor Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 422
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-14 16:20:31
Spoilers!
This ficlet does a remarkable job of telling its point without
descending into anything touching maudlin. Just what that crucial
point is, I do not want to say because I am sure it would spoil the
story; but the author knows. Yet for one of Faramir's lineage it
seemed extremely fitting. You brought tears to my eyes before I even
reached the end. A fine piece indeed.

Title: Midnight Author: EdorasLass Genres: Romance ID: 18
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-14 16:20:51
Mmm, lovely imagery throughout here. It is nice to think of these two
men so at peace; I can't imagine them being that way when they both
were awake, but with one quietly watching the other in sleep it seems
more believable. They need this space to relax, and I really enjoyed
seeing you give it to them.

Title: There Was A Hobbit Author: agape4gondor Genres: Humor:
Drabbles ID: 111
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-14 16:21:10
Priceless! Especially considering Frodo's original character names.
And it's nice to see Boromir and Haldir connecting, it was a very nice
character moment. Well told, Agape!

Title: Noldolant Author: Dawn Felagund Races: Elves: House of
Finwe ID: 253
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-14 16:21:26
Spoilers!
"Noldolante," despite its dreary name, is a rather charming set of
stories about Maglor's relationships with his brothers and father, and
how those relationships relate to his art as a musician. Although they
are for the most part carefree, each has an element of pain or tension
to it. Which of course most stories do; but it is very interesting to
look at just what is causing that tension. In the beginning they are
fairly simple, though no doubt traumatic to young Maglor ;-) - a
scraped knee, jealousy oer a new younger brother. Yet as the story
escalates the tensions in each scene grow more and more serious, and
for Maglor it becomes harder to find "the music."

As an artist (both writer and musician) I can relate to this, and Dawn
captures this theme very well without ever explicitly saying what
she's doing. When the tension of the last part hits, it swept this
reader off her feet; I had no trouble imagining that Maglor would be
mute for so many years.

Title: One Step More - The Heroism of Frodo Baggins Author:
ConnieMarie Genres: Non-Fiction: Character Studies ID: 395
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-14 16:21:39
Spoilers!
This essay shows Frodo's courage and determination well - I hadn't
thought of it in these terms, but I can see Frodo's relevance to
modern (wo)man much better. Nice work.

Title: Small Strengths Author: Elwen Races: Hobbits: Hurt/Comfort
ID: 238
Reviewer: Mews1945 2008-10-14 20:34:01
Spoilers!
The emotions in this fic are powerful and true. Sam's guilt over
leaving Frodo, Frodo's fear of the spider, are logical reactions to
things that occurred during the quest. Frodo's illness is described,
but the comfort he receives is given just as much attention, and makes
for a satisfying read.

Title: The Importance of Being Bilbo Author: Dreamflower Genres:
Non-Fiction: Character Studies ID: 686
Reviewer: dkpalaska 2008-10-14 20:41:34
Dreamflower's essay is a very fond but clear-headed presentation of
some important reasons to not overlook TH or its main protagonist on
our way to the more famous sequel. I enjoyed the look at parallels
between the two stories, some quite eye-opening; and especially
appreciated the acknowledgement of how critical Bilbo's presence was
in Frodo's life.

Title: Trouble at Bag End Author: Angiet Races: Hobbits: Childhood
ID: 728
Reviewer: Mews1945 2008-10-14 21:21:29
Spoilers!
A meeting between a lonely ranger visiting a hobbit friend, and the
baby who will someday grow up to be the Ring-bearer. Aragorn finds
himself being charmed by Frodo Baggins, even when the lad is stormy
and inclined to kick. He discovers the baby's problem and has a
solution that soon has Frodo in a better frame of mind. Charming and
heartwarming.

Title: Labour of Love Author: Aprilkat Races: Cross-Cultural:
Frodo and Faramir ID: 733
Reviewer: Mews1945 2008-10-14 21:38:54
Spoilers!
As startling an idea as is male pregnancy, Aprilkat has created an
entertaining and enjoyable variation on the theme. Frodo and Faramir
are lovers and discover the little known fact that liaisons between
men and male hobbits can sometimes result in pregnancy for the hobbit.
With the King acting as midwife, Frodo suffers through many of the
difficulties of pregnancy and childbirth. One scene, when the
apparently helpless hobbit is waylaid by ruffians, ends with a most
unexpected result. The birthing scene is funny, thrilling and touching
and the characterizations are excellent.

Title: A Little Misunderstanding Author: Radbooks Races:
Cross-Cultural: Elves and Men ID: 275
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-14 21:45:59
An interesting premise. Yes, what *would* people, especially children,
remember and think about Aragorn's disappearance? How many were privy
to the secret? And just exactly how much would they know?

Radbooks brings this Dnedain village and the community to life. My
favourite bits of descriptions was of the stalls - they brought the
special atmosphere, the sounds and smells to life very well.

The characterisations are excellent; each very nuanced and vivid. I
especially liked those of the twins; the guilt Elladan still carries
within him because of Arathorn's death and Elrohir's attempts to
console and reassure him. I also liked the obvious bond between
Halbarad and his father.

Title: The Legend of the Grey Riders Author: Jay of Lasgalen
Races: Cross-Cultural: Elves and Men ID: 176
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-14 22:00:32
Ha! This was a amusing clash between history and legend. Here are
omer and owyn trying to tell a solemn and momentuous moment in the
history in Rohan, all the while the twins keep interrupting them
insolently because - being witness ot the events - they know the
details better.

I loved the irony and glee with which the twins anticipate every new
line, and owyn's scolding, and the heated debate that ensuees between
her and her brother over the finer details. I'm sure Faramir would
eventually tell his wife, but for now, he is right in not coming
between the lines.

The story also has a more serious aspect: that in Middle-earth are
beings who were eye-witnesses for events so far away in the fogs of
the past that for others, they are only dimly-remembered myths. It
must created quite a cognitive dissonance at times when these
different cultures meet.

Title: Labour Pains Author: Aratlithiel Genres: Humor: Shire ID: 483
Reviewer: Mews1945 2008-10-14 22:14:09
Spoilers!
What does a bachelor do when asked to take care of his gardener's
pregnant wife for a fortnight while Samwise has to be away taking care
of an emergency of the gardening sort? Frodo is first horrified, then
disbelieving, but somehow finds himself manipulated into staying at
Bag End alone with Rose, who promises to tell him the second anything
happens. For the next two weeks, Frodo must somehow deal with Rosie's
mood swings and cravings and keep his sanity at the same time. And he
can only hide in his study for so much of the time. When Rose goes
into labor early, Frodo suffers panic when he can't find the Widow,
but does send Gaffer Gamgee off to fetch Rosie's mum. This is amusing
and sweet and kept me laughing all the way through.

Msg# 9498

MEFA Reviews for Wednesday, October 15, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 15, 2008 - 21:00:30 Topic ID# 9498
Title: Kementari Author: Marta Times: First Age and Prior ID: 99
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-15 04:05:49
Spoilers!
An exquisite study in melancholy; as the Queen of the Earth mourns her
long-lost greatest creations. Marta captures the tone of a powerful
and immortal being entrapped by sorrowful memories; and the special
closeness that she would feel with the earth.

Title: I Can't Author: Antane Races: Hobbits: Friendship ID: 24
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-15 04:53:57
Spoilers!
Antane presents a series of vignettes all bound together by the theme
of Sam and Frodo's lifelong friendship. The bond of a friendship as
close as brotherhood binds them from youth in the Shire through the
harrowing and heartbreaking adventures seen in LOTR and then through
Frodo's leaving Middle-earth. Antane cleverly uses the phrase [I
can't] in each of the vignettes, spoken by either one or the other
hobbit, to show how their friendship enables them to overcome obstacles.

I particularly loved the way the series is bookended by two occasions
where the friends stargaze together. Their watching the stars first as
young hobbits in the Shire and then later, in their old age in
Valinor, is a wonderful touch to begin and end the series.


Title: Black is the Color of My True Love's Hair Author: Marta
Genres: Romance: Gondor ID: 405
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-15 05:19:08
Spoilers!
Although I don't believe that either Denethor or Aragorn had
homosexual desires; Marta sets out such an attraction and makes it not
only plausible, but intriguing. Denethor's struggle to master his own
desires is inspired; for control and mastery are crucial to Denethor's
character - and he can no more subdue his desire for Thorongil than he
could master Aragorn himself, though he can redirect that desire.

Marta uses the five classical elements - aether, air, fire, water and
earth - as themes for each chapter, a nifty bit which works quite well.

This is very elegant slash, and, like most of Marta's work, complex
and thoughtfully written.

Title: A Darkness Lies behind Us Author: Bodkin Races: Elves:
Incomplete ID: 190
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-15 07:25:31
The first publicly to return to life, rehoused much as he'd been
before he left Aman to cross the ice bridge, was Finrod. Why one of
the exiles rather than those who'd been true to the Valar? is the
question of the day. Now Finrod and his family seek to make the return
of still others easier, and in doing so to more fully appreciate just
the depths of how life had been--out there--beyond the sea that
divided Aman and Enorrie.

A fascinating examination of each of those who loved Finrod in life. A
fascinating premise to this one.

Title: Denial Author: Oshun Races: Elves: House of Finwe ID: 80
Reviewer: Moreth 2008-10-15 13:21:20
Although this is only a short piece by Oshun, it nevertheless carries
all her hallmarks of careful detailing and characterisation.

The piece is essentially a 'gap-filler' that presents the two eldest
sons of Fanor in their youth. In one short piece the author manages
to portray not only the close and supportive relationship between the
two brothers, but also light-hearted and slightly sarcastic banter
between friends: ['Aren't you just the picture-perfect courtier?']

The contrast between the rather bohemian habits of Macalaur and the
careful public presentation of Nelyo are thoroughly amusing! (And if
you aren't familiar with Quenya names for the sons of Fanor, the
author has usefully added a 'who's who' list at the end.)

Despite the links to other (longer) works by Oshun, this piece stands
on its own as an inticate and interesting vignette.

Title: Another Prometheus Author: Gandalfs apprentice Races:
Cross-Cultural: Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 85
Reviewer: Moreth 2008-10-15 14:24:27
An outstanding drabble that offers a very different perspective on
Fanor's defiance of the Valar.

The short length and spare language disguise the number of ideas and
motifs that exist in these hundred words. For example, the phrase
'[the myth of Fanor]' implies that not only have the exact historical
details been lost to the characters, but also that the story of the
Flight of the Noldor is taken by some to be fictitious.

The concept of a teacher daring to step outside the bounds of orthodox
statements and present Fanor as a hero is inspired, carrying as it
does all the implications of narrow-minded 'received wisdom' on the
part of ['the loremasters'].

Excellently done. A 'must read' for all Fanor fans and a very
innovative story on the long-term legacy of the First Age.



Title: Even Legends Fade Author: Star In Ruin Races: Elves ID: 555
Reviewer: Virtuella 2008-10-15 16:44:08
This is a charming piece, very moving. You catch nuances of emotion
very well.

Title: The Dancing Lesson Author: Lindelea Races: Hobbits:
Friendship ID: 664
Reviewer: Virtuella 2008-10-15 16:51:57
*Grin* You know what image came up in my mind when I pictured Frodo
thinking of orcs and spiders, while all the mama's pushed their
daughters at the eligible bachelor, who doesn't like to dance? It
starts with D and ends with arcy...

A very amusing piece!

Title: Trading Pledges Author: Adaneth Races: Dwarves ID: 339
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-15 17:16:12
I love how so many stories of the Dwarves appear to focus on their
love-lives--Gloin giving his new bride a necklace to wear close to her
heart; lovers sharing the moment of looking down into the Mirrormere
together; and then this one! How does a young Dwarf court the object
of his affection, and right then on the eve of war? This story
displays how it is done, and how the Dwarf maiden seeks to pledge
herself to him.

A most wondrous tale, and so fitting!

Title: Moon of the Sea Author: pandemonium_213 Times: Second and
Early Third Age ID: 213
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-15 18:06:43
Spoilers!
This series gives a life, purpose, and character to Elendil's wife.
From now on she will be for me, also, ever Isilme, the moon of the
sea, the pearl of immense value, Pandemonium has named her.

Yes, a strong woman, the match for the strong man she married; and
fully worthy of her husband and her sons.

This is a series all can rejoice in!

Title: Things as they were in all the days of my life Author:
Tanaqui Races: Men: Pre-Ring War Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 393
Reviewer: Moreth 2008-10-15 18:10:52
Spoilers!
I like this well thought out series of drabbles that show glimpses of
Denethor through his life.

My favourite is [Lost Lore], which shows the Steward through the eyes
of his sons and close friend as he is now, and as he was in his youth.

The weight of responsibility and grief that build over time is very
poignantly handled. Well done for showing the human side of a stern
and demanding character!

Title: Frodo's Crosswise Verse Author: Elanor Gardner Genres:
Drama: Featuring Frodo or Sam ID: 520
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-15 18:35:43
Spoilers!
Grief, despair, self-hatred, loss--Frodo feels all of these as he
speaks, he thinks, to a sleeping Sam and a small spider weaving her
web. And slowly he states his case, remembering the vow not to keep
his feelings trapped inside him, even as he seeks to do this, hating
what the Ring has made of him.

Sad, poignant, moving--and in the end hopeful. A worthy sequel to
Sam's memory of the day they met with the tinker.

Title: Seas of Fate Author: Thundera Tiger Races: Cross-Cultural:
Elves and Men ID: 487
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-15 21:35:39
Spoilers!
The story perfectly captures not only the "mere" sight and sound of
the seashore, but also its atmosphere. It provides an insightful
backdrop for Imrahil as a sea-loving man, and so able to help Legolas
with his sea-longing. It seems he knows to a certain extent what the
Elf is going through, torn between the land and its duties, and the
freedom and promise of the ocean.

I like the calm, slightly melancholy tone of the narrative, which
seems ideally suited to the subject matter.

The characterisations are excellent; and the balanced note in the
level of closeness depicted between those two strikes me as very
convincing. In particular Imrahil is captured exactly the way I
imagine him: sea-loving but diligent in his duties, compassionate,
insightful and wise. I love the way he teaches Legolas the ways of the
sea and just how limited any perceived "mastery" over it there is in
the end.

The sea-longing as observed by Imrahil is described very powerfully,
and very gripping; almost as if, just like him, the readers are
captured by the sheer force of it.

Title: The Pirate Author: Sivan Shemesh Genres: Alternate Universe
ID: 674
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-16 00:00:47
A cute,warm hearted story.

Title: Things as they were in all the days of my life Author:
Tanaqui Races: Men: Pre-Ring War Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 393
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-16 00:20:59
A beautiful and perceptive collection of drabbles.I especially loved
the glimpse of a light hearted young Denethor and was saddened by the
way his jealousy and suspicion of Thorongil warped him. As one trouble
follows another,Denethor gradually becomes the bitter and crazed man
we see in the book.I highly recommend these well written drabbles for
all fans of Denethor,or for people like me,who don't much like him,but
wish to understand him better.

Msg# 9499

ADMIN – Cross-Cultural Posted by Tanaqui October 16, 2008 - 12:30:27 Topic ID# 9499
Hey guys,

Here is your weekly admin post  this week we're looking at stories that
showcase the differences between races, cultures and kingdoms in
Middle-earth. Whether it's humour pieces pointing up cultural
misunderstandings, drama based on the competing needs of different
peoples, or international romance, I hope this list helps you find
stories you'd like to review.

For the list of pieces in this announcement I've used an author's main
category selection. Each author selects three category choices, only one
of which it can be placed in; but the author has still described it as
being suitable for three category choices, even if it isn't placed
there. So if an author selected the "race" category Cross Cultural it
will be on this list.

Finding stories that selected a certain main category is pretty
straightforward. To do this

1. Log in to www.mefawards.net/MEFA2008/
2. Click the "Stories" link at the top of the page.
3. Click the "Show Filter" link.
4. Click the "Clear All Filters" button if you've used the filter before
this session.
5. Select the genre, race, or time period you would like from the
"Genre, Race, Time" filter (sixth from the bottom).
6. Click the "Display selected nominations" button.

This will pull up all of the nominated pieces that selected your main
category as a first-, second-, or third-choice category, even if they
didn't end up categorized in that main category.

******************************

Here are the stories competing in this year's competition whose author
selected Races: Cross-Cultural to describe their piece.

agape4gondor
---(66) A Cat in King Elessar's Court
---(111) There Was A Hobbit
---(316) My Sword Weeps
Alassante
---(682) A Great Cause for Concern
Alassiel
---(502) Tales of the Eldandili
Allee
---(155) All That Remained
Amarok
---(281) And so our friendship began...
Ancalime8301
---(185) Slings and Arrows
Angiet
---(728) Trouble at Bag End
annmarwalk
---(41) Courage
annmarwalk/EdorasLass CoAuthors
---(124) The Haradric Whore and Her Son
Aprilkat
---(733) Labour of Love
Aranel Took
---(259) Nine Companions
---(471) Rebirth
---(533) Home
Ariel/Auntie
Meesh/Budgielover/Cathleen/Dreamflower/Gryffinjack/kellyfrankenfield/Lindelea/Pearl
Took/Rosie Took/SlightlyTookish CoAuthors ---(496) To Sleep, Perchance
to Dream
Baggins Babe
---(118) Hope Remains
Baranduin
---(420) Many Branches
Branwyn (Lady Branwyn)
---(13) The Onion Riddle
---(15) Beggar's Night
---(22) Horse Sense
---(72) In the Van
Budgielover
---(731) A Moment in the Morning in Bree
cactuskim
---(675) The Weaving Cow
Cathleen
---(358) Where Shadows Lay No More
celticbard
---(373) The Price of Pity
Claudia
---(73) A White Coverlet to Cool a Hobbit's Toes
---(194) The Elanor Bloom
---(223) Sun
---(226) Lost
---(236) Amara
---(308) Land of the Moon
---(725) Arranged Marriage
Dana
---(89) There and Back
Dawn Felagund
---(126) Light of the Westering Sun
docmon
---(340) Answering the Call
---(473) Choosing
Dot
---(169) A Problem Shared
Dreamflower
---(2) Good King Elessar
---(146) Of First Impressions and Old Friends
---(299) On Amon Sûl
---(391) A Place for Gandalf
---(427) And all was made ready
---(532) The Myth of the One Ring's Power
---(617) Eucatastrophe: The Return
---(680) Clear Conscience (The Clear Shot Remix)
Dreamflower/Lindelea CoAuthors
---(669) Pip-napped!
Dwimordene
---(106) On Far Fields
---(156) Cuts Gone Wrong
eiranae
---(312) The Dwarves Treasure
Elen Kortirion
---(515) Diamonds For Forever I, II & III
elfscribe
---(539) Wind and Fire
febobe
---(239) Cold
---(628) Primum Non Nocere (First, Do No Harm)
Fiondil
---(8) The Last Messenger: A Tale of Numenor
---(53) GOBLINS: The Herald"s Summons
---(317) Legolas in Mandos
---(452) Parting Gifts
---(545) FAULT: The Doctor Is In
---(578) Somewhere I Have Never Traveled
foxrafer (csevans8)
---(20) In Good Company
Gandalfs apprentice
---(85) Another Prometheus
---(242) Incarnation
---(244) Arwen in the Afternoon
Golden
---(142) A Friend's Hug
Gwynnyd
---(362) Feelings of Superiority
---(434) The Skills That Keep You Alive
Ignoble Bard
---(381) Fait Accompli
---(568) I Ain't Got Nobody
---(646) Silver Blossoms Blown
Imhiriel
---(216) Sharing Good News
---(374) A Meeting in the Tower Hills
---(378) Tying Notes
Isabeau of Greenlea
---(295) Dol Amroth Yule
Jay of Lasgalen
---(10) A Large Bold Hand
---(48) Wedding Nerves
---(176) The Legend of the Grey Riders
Kenaz
---(60) Heart of the Wood
Larner
---(1) The Craft of the Elven Smith
---(112) Concerning Walls
---(293) Epiphany
---(394) Jewels of Light
---(477) The Keys of the Realm
---(645) The Ring That Sauron Forged
---(681) For the Want of ...
---(687) The Birthday Blessing
---(694) A Summer Night's Peace
Le Rouret
---(454) The Misty Month
---(455) The Green Knight and the Master of Esgaroth
Linaewen
---(576) Feet That Wander
Linda Hoyland
---(505) Home is where the heart is
---(521) Sour Milk
---(722) A Dainty Dish
Lindelea
---(663) Dorwinion Wine
---(689) Where the Sky Kisses the Horizon, There My Dreams Lie
Marchwriter (The Lady of Light)
---(311) First Name Terms
Marta
---(297) Leather
Mews1945
---(730) At Cormallen
nau_tika
---(556) The Last Throw
Neoinean
---(359) Arwen
Nieriel Raina
---(332) Fulfilling Oaths
---(551) Apart
---(553) As Was Dwarven Tradition
---(559) Dance of the Deer and Mûmak
Nightwing
---(330) To See A World
pandemonium_213
---(51) Trinity
Pearl Took
---(303) Yule Tails
peredhil lover
---(456) To Give Hope
Perelleth
---(168) Sing My Worth Immortal
Primsong
---(677) Bombur's Diet
---(720) Merry on the Pelennor Fields
Princess Artemis
---(416) Temptation
Radbooks
---(275) A Little Misunderstanding
Raksha the Demon
---(45) Before the Black Gate
---(47) Wind of Change
---(249) Sing All Ye People!
---(650) Summer's Lease
rhyselle
---(69) Courage
---(544) At the Last Minute
Rubynye
---(237) Worlds Within Worlds
shirebound
---(121) Seven Stones and Seven Stars and One White Tree
---(214) Tales from Tol Eressëa
---(599) Pippin's Secret
---(633) Feeling Safe
---(643) Keep Him Secret, Keep Him Safe
---(727) A Warm Sun Shining
Sivan Shemesh
---(710) Wounds of a Friend
SlightlyTookish
---(315) Shelter From the Storm
Soledad
---(103) The Vault of the Dead
sophinisba solis
---(187) Put Aside Your Doubt
---(729) Frodo's Pointed Ears
StarLight9
---(542) Not One of Us
---(610) Bad Idea
Tanaqui
---(271) Lost Love
---(300) Creation Myths
---(450) Stewards
---(719) The World Is Changing
Tena
---(562) Switch
Thundera Tiger
---(470) Oathbreakers
---(472) With Many \Fond\" Acknowledgments"
---(487) Seas of Fate
---(639) The Dooming of Small Hands
viv
---(6) Gently Held

To find more information about any of these pieces, just do the following

1. Log in to www.mefawards.net/MEFA2008/
2. Click the "Stories" link at the top of the web page.
3. Type the Story ID followed by the "#" sign into the search bar, and
click the "Search" button.

For instance, searching for "340#" will bring up story #340, Answering
the Call by docmon.

Cross-Cultural stories are competing in the following subcategories:

---Genres: Adventure: General
---Genres: Adventure: Incomplete: General
---Genres: Alternate Universe: General
---Genres: Alternate Universe: Angst/Tragedy
---Genres: Alternate Universe: Incomplete
---Genres: Alternate Universe: Steward's Family
---Genres: Drama: General
---Genres: Drama: Featuring Aragorn
---Genres: Drama: Featuring Boromir or Faramir
---Genres: Drama: Featuring Frodo or Sam
---Genres: Drama: Featuring the Noldor
---Genres: Drama: General Drabbles
---Genres: Drama: General Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Genres: Drama: Gondor Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Genres: Drama: Hurt/Comfort
---Genres: Drama: Incomplete
---Genres: Humor: General
---Genres: Humor: Drabbles
---Genres: Humor: Elven Lands
---Genres: Humor: Gondor
---Genres: Humor: Other Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Genres: Humor: Shire
---Genres: Humor: Valar & Maiar
---Genres: Mystery: General
---Genres: Non-Fiction: General
---Genres: Poetry: General
---Genres: Poetry: Drama
---Genres: Poetry: Hobbits
---Genres: Poetry: Late Third Age
---Genres: Romance: Drabbles
---Genres: Romance: Elven Lands
---Genres: Romance: Gondor
---Genres: Romance: Other Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Races: Cross-Cultural: General
---Races: Cross-Cultural: Elves and Men
---Races: Cross-Cultural: Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Races: Cross-Cultural: Friendship
---Races: Cross-Cultural: Frodo and Faramir
---Races: Cross-Cultural: Post-Ring War
---Races: Dwarves: General
---Races: Dwarves: Drabbles
---Races: Elves: Mirkwood Elves
---Races: Hobbits: General
---Races: Hobbits: Childhood
---Races: Hobbits: Friendship
---Races: Hobbits: Incomplete
---Races: Hobbits: Post-Ring War
---Races: Other Beings: General
---Times: First Age and Prior: General
---Times: First Age and Prior: House of Finwe
---Times: Fourth Age and Beyond: General
---Times: Fourth Age and Beyond: Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Times: Late Third Age: General
---Times: Late Third Age: General Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Times: Late Third Age: Gondor
---Times: Late Third Age: Gondor Drabbles
---Times: Mid Third Age: General
---Times: Mid Third Age: Eriador
---Times: Modern Times: General
---Times: Multi-Age: General
---Times: Multi-Age: Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Times: Second and Early Third Age

Remember: The lists of stories and sub-categories listed above are based
on the main categories chosen by the author.

Happy reading!

Tanaqui
(MEFA Tech Support)

P.S. - If you noticed a mistake in this post, please email about it so I
can check whether a mistake has been made and, if necessary, correct my
announcement. You can reach me privately at
techsupport(.at.)mefawards(.dot.)net. Thanks!

Msg# 9500

MEFA Reviews for Thursday, October 16, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 16, 2008 - 20:18:12 Topic ID# 9500
Title: Elflings · Author: Jael · Races: Elves: Family · ID: 348
Reviewer: Larner · 2008-10-16 09:07:53
Spoilers!
Ah, the childhood of young Elves--just as likely to be--disturbing--as
the childhood of our own offspring! A tale of two young elven lads and
a toad--and how they interrupted what was intended to be a
particularly relaxing night. Definitely raises a chuckle or three! Enjoy!

Title: The Lowest Circle · Author: Tanaqui · Races: Elves: Drabbles ·
ID: 449
Reviewer: Larner · 2008-10-16 09:16:36
Spoilers!
A rather disturbing drabble on one of the most disturbing activities
played at by those who would become Dark Lords--the corruption of
other beings to make of them orcs. This ficlet with its decided
allusion to Dante is guaranteed to make one shiver. Well wrought indeed.

Title: Silver Blossoms Blown · Author: Ignoble Bard · Races:
Cross-Cultural · ID: 646
Reviewer: Moreth · 2008-10-16 11:16:50
Spoilers!
I'm delighted by this short piece exploring Varda's relationship with
Elves.

The first joyful meeting and the moment of chilling foresight into the
future make this a moving insight into the Vala's thoughts. The author
uses Varda's actions and observations to highlight the differences
(and similarities) between the Valar and the Elves: ['...their forms
constrained to one aspect.']

Certainly an interesting meeting between races!

Title: A Harmony In Autumn · Author: Oshun · Genres: Romance: Elven
Lands · ID: 49
Reviewer: Moreth · 2008-10-16 14:41:37
Oshun has drawn a poignant and compelling picture of the final autumn
in Nevrast, and the impact that a relocation to Gondolin has on two
friends.

The main story concerns the (long-delayed!) admission of love between
the two protagonists, but interwoven into this is a very well-drawn
and imaginative idea of political differences and family disputes. The
scenes and dialogue between the lovers have wonderful touches of
humour, halfway through an erotic scene it's impossible not to laugh
aloud at a wry comment from one of the characters! This totally human
dialogue makes the writing come to life.

The colours of autumn are beautifully depicted, and the seasonal
backdrop echoes the transience of Vinyamar (and later, of course, of
Gondolin itself). I especially like the description of a [stony divide
on the land side of the beach], which sketches an amazing image of a
sea-coast in my mind that many longer descriptions have failed to evoke.

The skepticism of Glorfindel towards the Valar in general, and
Turgon's 'vision' in particular is amusing and intriguing - I can't
help but wonder how this attitude is involved in Glorfindel's eventual
fate!

Of course, the presence of Fingon as a side character does nothing to
harm the story! As in Oshun's other writing, he is both charming and
uninhibited by convention.

This serves as an interesting introduction of characters and places
that (I hope) will one day be given a longer story!

Title: Vodka · Author: Ford of Bruinen · Times: First Age and Prior:
House of Finwe · ID: 714
Reviewer: Moreth · 2008-10-16 15:18:47
A politically-incorrect, sarcastic Maglor trying to work through his
feelings by getting drunk, and written with a touch of (black) humour.
This really is an superb vignette and presents an interesting
interpretation on the relationship between Maedhros and Maglor.

The dialogue excellently paced and every action adds to the depiction
of the character. I would say 'charming' but, really, he is not!

Title: Five things that never happened to Nerdanel · Author: Meril ·
Genres: Alternate Universe: Angst/Tragedy · ID: 389
Reviewer: Moreth · 2008-10-16 18:36:50
These short pieces give five well-considered possibilities for
Nerdanel's fate, and make interesting 'what-if' scenarios.

The two most intriguing are #4 and #5. In each it appears that one
partner in the marriage becomes dominant and over-rides the other's
will. It makes for an excellent opposition of view points!

A fascinating study in who Nerdanel was (not).



Title: A Fitting Occupation · Author: Radbooks · Races: Men: Pre-Ring
War Fixed-Length Ficlets · ID: 601
Reviewer: Tanaqui · 2008-10-16 20:56:36
Spoilers!
This series of drabbles tells a charming story about finding one's
proper place in the world. King Bard and the second son that Radbooks
has given him are neatly and convincingly characterised, Bard's wisdom
and the humour of Baird's misunderstanding are well handled, and the
final line is a treat. Nicely done!

Title: The Captain's New Clothes · Author: Raksha the Demon · Genres:
Humor: Other Fixed-Length Ficlets · ID: 421
Reviewer: Tanaqui · 2008-10-16 20:56:50
Spoilers!
With her usual deft wit, Raksha the Demon provides an entertaining
explanation for Faramir's attire in a somewhat wince-inducing
illustration of the meeting of the Captain of the Ithilien Rangers
with Frodo Baggins, Hobbit of the Shire. Although this a light-hearted
piece set in a distinctly alternate universe (since Faramir's garb in
the picture is definitely at odds with Tolkien's description), the
glimpses into the lives of the Rangers and the privations of Henneth
Annun are sketched extremely effectively, as is the affection of
Faramir's men for their leader, and the reasons why he is held in such
high regard. Raksha's lighter stories about Faramir are always
enjoyable, and this is no exception. Well done!


Title: Loving a Book Lover · Author: Avon · Genres: Romance: Drabbles
· ID: 721
Reviewer: Tanaqui · 2008-10-16 20:57:01
Spoilers!
Avon has crafted an amusing drabble about how Eowyn tackles one of her
husband's more annoying habits. I particularly enjoyed the glimpse of
the way Faramir's character and behaviour had been formed by his
brother in the line ["he had learnt to shut out Boromir’s attempts to
disturb his reading."] Eowyn, of course, is capable of being
distracting in an entirely different and clearly un-ignorable fashion.
Most entertaining.


Title: Moved to Pity · Author: Imhiriel · Genres: Drama: General
Drabbles · ID: 366
Reviewer: Tanaqui · 2008-10-16 20:57:11
Spoilers!
This is a marvellous drabble from Imhiriel showing Namo's reaction to
Luthien's pleading to be united with Beren. While his reaction is
beautifully showm, what I most love about this piece -- and the part
that I think is its true genius -- is the attention given to the
somewhat neglected character of Vaire. Even in Tolkien's own writings,
she merits relatively few lines, and in the Silmarillion comes across
as somewhat tokenistic, simply one of the conventional goddess types
with which Tolkien rounds out the numbers of the Valier. In this
characterisation, Imhiriel shows her in her true light as one of the
Great Powers: not just as a supportive helpmeet to her powerful
husband or a skilled craftswoman, but with wisdom of her own as deep
and profound as Namo's. This is definitely one of those
wish-I'd-thought-of-that pieces. Bravissima!


Title: No Man's Land · Author: Branwyn (Lady Branwyn) · Genres:
Alternate Universe: Drabbles · ID: 726
Reviewer: Tanaqui · 2008-10-16 20:57:24
Spoilers!
Oh, thank goodness this alternative universe didn't come to pass!
Branwyn has put together a very clever drabble about how Tolkien's
experiences during the Great War might have turned out. I especially
like the deft touch of the mispronunciation of his name. Nicely done.

Title: There Was A Hobbit · Author: agape4gondor · Genres: Humor:
Drabbles · ID: 111
Reviewer: Pearl Took · 2008-10-16 21:00:33
This just totally cracked me up! Absolutely fantastic - especially to
have the Elves of Lothlorien being the ones singing it. Also, made all
the more hilarious seeing as Tolkien, at one time, had Frodo being
called Bingo.

A wonderful drabble, Agape!

Title: Concerning Walls · Author: Larner · Races: Cross-Cultural:
Frodo and Faramir · ID: 112
Reviewer: Pearl Took · 2008-10-16 21:08:42
I really enjoyed your use of walls of varying kinds, Larner. Physical
walls, city walls, house walls, straight and rounded walls - and
mental/emotional walls as well. You weave that theme throughout with
great artistry.

Also, it was interesting to read a story with Faramir and Frodo, I've
not seen many of those.

I loved Frodo saying that it had been a comfort, of sorts, that the
hidden stairs were outside, and I loved Faramir's surprise at this. It
made for a great transition for a discussion of the differences
between life in The Shire and life in the cities of Men.

I was glad you have a strong Frodo here. This is a beautiful and
realistic conversation for Frodo and Faramir.

Most Excellently Well Done!

Title: Boromir and Teddy · Author: Ithil-valon · Genres: Drama: Final
Partings · ID: 113
Reviewer: Pearl Took · 2008-10-16 21:25:52
This is a most beautiful and haunting story, Ithil-valon.

I like that so many have Boromir and Theodred being close friends and
the thought of their deaths being something to further draw Eomer and
Faramir together as friends and brothers by marriage is wonderful. It
was right and proper for them to go together to Theodred's mound on a
misty morning with mourning doves cooing their melancholy call.

I liked the touch you added of Eomer having to assure a guard that all
is well. It is so realistic. It is one of the hard parts of being a
ruler; you get watched over.

Thank you for this marvelous story!

Title: Pippin-Frog For A Day · Author: Neilia · Genres: Alternate
Universe: Incomplete · ID: 115
Reviewer: Pearl Took · 2008-10-16 21:28:53
Spoilers!
What could be cuter than a sweet little frog? But what do you do when
that cute little froggy is your cousin and friend?

Merry and Pippin have been being their usual mischievious selves while
the hobbits are at Rivendell before leaving on the Quest. Pippin has
pushed things too far with Gandalf and the next thing everyone knows
is there is a small green eyed froggy on the floor of Frodo's room.
The wizard assures them it only lasts a day, eldest cousin Frodo
decides it might just teach the youngster a lesson and so we get to be
treated to the adventures of Pippin the Frog.

I can hardly wait to see what Neilia does with her charming tale. It
is funny, exciting and fanciful and written in a believable manner.
Believable? Well, Gandalf *is* a wizard.

Bravo Neilia!!

Title: Hope Remains · Author: Baggins Babe · Times: Fourth Age and
Beyond · ID: 118
Reviewer: Pearl Took · 2008-10-16 21:47:08
Spoilers!
A marvelous, haunting story of the gentle presence of a special ghost.

I will admit, it caught me off guard that Frodo and Sam were buried in
the Shire, but it was easy to just realize that this must be an AU
where they didn't have to leave and read on. With that firmly in mind
the rest of the story pulled me in and wove a beautiful ghost story.

I loved the touch of the athelas growing to form a boarder around the
graves and the effort the Thain, Master and Mayor took in making sure
no one would know something else had been interred with Rosie, Sam and
Frodo.

The appearance of the Ranger to protect Hancho Proudfoot on his way
home from Bree was so fortuitous. And I loved that he had to search
his mind to recognize the name the Ranger gave him.

A wonderful, hopeful, story.

Msg# 9501

MEFA Reviews for Friday, October 17, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 17, 2008 - 20:53:05 Topic ID# 9501
Title: 25 Rethe, S.R. 1422: The Three Travellers Remember Author:
Dreamflower Genres: Poetry: Drama ID: 679
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-17 01:26:19
Spoilers!
I am fairly new to the dribble format, in fact I think that this is
the first poem of this form that I can remember reading, yet I found
it remarkably useful, a nice middle-ground between free verse and more
structured forms of poetry. This dribble in particular seemed a nice
use of that form, with the longer lines speaking of graver, more
universal matters while the shorter ones became almost a plea:
["Remember"], addressed as is popular to a single individual

The two stanzas were also well done, with one focusing on the world at
large and the other looking at how Frodo was influenced by and
influenced those closest to him; and also how that smaller world
relates to the Great Events. There's a dichotomy there that I've not
quite wrapped my head around, and I suspect I'll be thinking about
this poem's theme over the next few days. Which is definitely a sign
that the poet's doing something right!

Title: Second Best Author: Tanaqui Races: Men: Gondor Drabbles
ID: 384
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-17 01:26:48
Spoilers!
I love stories that misdirect the reader's thoughts and expectations
skillfully, and never is that more difficult (or perhaps more crucial)
than with a drabble. Right from the start, this reader thought of one
character, and on my first read Tanaqui deftly kept me fooled until
the very last line. And the nature of the eventual revealing drew a
very nice parallel between the character I expected to be the speaker
and the character who actually was; it's a nice piece of
characterization that hits you quite suddenly, but also feels very
natural.

Obviously I'm being vague, because I don't want to spoil the surprise
for those who haven't yet read this drabble; so let me just end with
this: Gondor fans won't want to miss this one, to be sure.

Title: Of Dreams... Author: Avon Races: Men: General Fixed-Length
Ficlets ID: 7
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-17 01:27:11
Spoilers!
This ficlet has a lovely lyrical feel to it; and the refrain, that
["he never dreamed of power,"] seems to nicely encapsulate Aragorn's
characters and at the same time draw a lovely parallel with Faramir.
Nicely done, I very much enjoyed reading this.

Title: The Onion Riddle Author: Branwyn (Lady Branwyn) Races:
Cross-Cultural: Post-Ring War ID: 13
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-17 01:27:34
Spoilers!
One of my favorite canonical tidbits is the reference in the
appendices that dwarven-ladies and often mistaken for dwarven-men by
people other than dwarves. Branwyn makes good use of that reference
here, showing us one such example of that confusion, and pulls it off
with a lot of good-natured ribbing. (I could totally see Beregond's
embarrassment at the end!) Given the conversations I've had with the
author over the improbability of beards on ladies of any race, that
aspect gave me a real chuckle. It's also just a good examination of
the difficulties that can arise between cultures, especially ones as
secretive and closed as dwarves. Well done!

Title: Ghost Author: Elleth Races: Elves: Noldor Fixed-Length
Ficlets ID: 218
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-17 03:31:37
Spoilers!
A beautifully written and poetic glimpse of how Feanor's wife might
have had a chance to say farewell.I liked this very much.

Title: The Search Author: rhyselle Genres: Poetry: Late Third Age
ID: 501
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-17 03:33:10
This eloquent poem captured Gollum's feelings and endless wanderings
very well.

Title: Candles Author: Gentle Hobbit Races: Hobbits: Post-Ring War
ID: 460
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-17 03:36:35
Spoilers!
A touching moment after the Ring War when Sam tries to show Frodo his
true worth by surrounding him by candles to celebrate Yule.I could
almost see the glow of the candlelight in this lovely,atmospheric
little story.

Title: Recognition Author: Dwimordene Times: Late Third Age:
Gondor Drabbles ID: 481
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-17 03:38:31
Spoilers!
I enjoyed this drabble in which Ioreth perceives the womanly heart
beneath Eowyn's cold exterior and rejoices when she finds Faramir.A
wise woman of Gondor indeed!

Title: Wave-Singer Author: Branwyn (Lady Branwyn) Genres:
Alternate Universe: Drabbles ID: 33
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-17 03:42:09
Spoilers!
A Moving interpretation of what Maglor's fate might have been, which
leaves the imaginative reader hoping to one day encounter him upon the
beach!.

Title: Heart of the Wood Author: Kenaz Races: Cross-Cultural:
Friendship ID: 60
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-17 16:47:50
Well-plotted; well-paced; the interaction between the characters is
sharp and realistic. I especially liked the descriptions and how they
adapted to the various surroundings, seasons, and the pacing of the
scenes. I also found it remarkable how Trin's ever-more increasing
loss of control on his temperament is woven into the story - as reader
I felt as puzzled and helpless as Beleg obviously felt.

This story captures Trin's character perfectly: his pride and
arrogance, his restlessness and discontent (yes, I admit I'm biased
*g*). I also liked this take on Beleg and his friendship to Trin
(regardless if you count the slash aspect of not); he is wise without
being perfect, patient without being stolid.

The writing is elegant and bittersweet, even forboding, echoing that
of the Silmarillion while able to flesh things out in more detail. The
story ends on a particularly graceful note.

Title: Star-songs of the Eorlingas Author: Tanaqui Races:
Cross-Cultural: Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 291
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-17 16:48:59
It is wonderful how Tanaqui captures the Rohirric theme not only in
the plot(s) of this series, but also in the language. The first one is
a prime example of this; in echoing the rhythm and rhyme scheme, in
the word building and sentence structure. But throughout the rest of
the other drabbles, this craft flashes up time and time again when
appropriate and give a special "flavour" to the reading.

We have had so many lovely stories about Elves and Dnedain and their
tales about the stars - it's nice that Tanaqui here closes a gap and
gives a very persuasive insight into what the Rohirric culture has to
say in this regard. They not only reveal the myths, but also connect
to everyday Rohirric life and culture.

And I love especially how these legends are made alive in the way
owyn tells them: like anecdotes, not some far-distant, nebulous concepts.

Title: And all was made ready Author: Dreamflower Races:
Cross-Cultural: Friendship ID: 427
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-17 18:17:00
Spoilers!
A lively and engaging gap-filler. I like it very much that the story
is told from the perspective of the Hobbits; it gives the lofty
ceremonies a groundedness that I found very appealing; even more so
when the PoV changes between the four of them.

I also appreciated the fact that for all the excitement and joy that
is shown for the upcoming events, Dreamflower rightfully tempers it
with some more serious moments, recalling the personal anxieties each
of the Hobbits carry within themselves, as well as their concerns for
each other's.

The characterisations are spot-on, the dialogue and interaction vivid
and convincing. The small details and little occurences tucked into
the story make for a very three-dimensional picture (I especially
enjoyed Sam's fussing over the braces - and I bet Imrahil felt quite
overwhelmed with the flood of information his casual question about
Sam's family elicited!).

Msg# 9502

MEFA Reviews for Saturday, October 18 (Part One) Posted by annmarwalk October 18, 2008 - 19:14:43 Topic ID# 9502
Title: The King's Surgeon Author: SurgicalSteel Genres: Longer
Works ID: 90
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-18 01:53:03
Spoilers!
An ambitious and epic story about a fiercely independant and
passionate female original character who becomes a surgeon in the
Houses of Healing of Minas Tirith as well as in other parts of
Middle-earth. The writer does an excellent job adapting medical
techniques to Tolkien's world, and filling the story with crises,
angst, romance and comedy. And the choice of the heroine's name
strikes me as very appropriate.

Title: The Green Knight and the Master of Esgaroth Author: Le Rouret
Genres: Drama: Incomplete ID: 455
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-18 02:34:13
I am a huge fan of Le Rouret's Green Knight universe, and this is an
excellent entry in the series. It's a good deal darker than previous
stories--much more of a suspense, mystery, horror story than a
straight adventure.

It's written in her trademark medieval style--which she does
beautifully. I don't know of any fanfic writer who handles archaic
language as well as she does.

I am very much caught up in following Legolas, Gimli, Bandobras, Tamin
and the others on their quest to find what is causing problems in
Erebor. And I am very intrigued by the mysterious and villainous
Master of Esgaroth.

I hope she updates soon!

Title: My Sword Weeps Author: agape4gondor Genres: Drama:
Featuring Boromir or Faramir ID: 316
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-18 02:34:26
This AU is fascinating: what if Denethor had been slain when Boromir
and Faramir were still very young, only a year or so after their
mother's death? And what if Boromir was killed soon after, leaving
only little Faramir to inherit the Steward's Rod?

The story is very harrowing and angsty, as we follow the efforts of
Faramir's Aunt Indis, who is his Regent, to save him from dying as
well. The story is quite plot driven, and an engrossing read, and kept
me hitting the "next" button for hour after hour.

I look forward to seeing more of this fascinating AU. I hope that
Agape will eventually show us how this will impact the War of the Ring.

Title: Yule Tails Author: Pearl Took Races: Cross-Cultural ID: 303
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-18 02:34:44
This little story, exploring a special connection between Pippin Took
and Faramir son of Denethor is just lovely.

I love the way it is constructed, showing us a longing that each of
them had in common during their childhood. The way in which both the
children find their wishes eventually granted over the years is very
inventive, and also realistic within the framework of their respective
homelands and their ages.

Title: A Meeting in the Tower Hills Author: Imhiriel Races:
Cross-Cultural: Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 374
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-18 02:35:01
I love the way this momentous and legendary first meeting is humanized
in this drabble--the high language of canon transforms itself into a
meeting between just--people, and without losing any of its
significance or importance..

Title: Weathertop Author: Primsong Genres: Poetry: Late Third Age
ID: 597
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-18 06:04:40
A highly atmospheric set of poems vividly conveying Frodo's
experiences at Weathertop.

Title: A Meeting in the Tower Hills Author: Imhiriel Races:
Cross-Cultural: Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 374
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-18 06:07:38
An enjoyable visualisation of what it must have been like for the
people living in Middle-earth to meet the settlers from Numenor.I'm
glad that in Tolkien's world the original people were not almost wiped
out as sadly often happened in out history. This meeting bodes well
for all.

Title: Return of the King Author: Imhiriel Races: Men: General
Drabbles ID: 355
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-18 06:38:49
A perceptive look at a little known corner of Gondor's history.I
imagine Eldacar was just as he is portrayed here.

Title: The Road Trip Author: Garnet Took Times: Modern Times ID: 410
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-18 06:44:53
Spoilers!
What a fun idea that the Hobbits should visit a chronicler of their
further adventures! Now if only Aragorn and Faramir would turn up on
my doorstep for a visit!

Title: Dangerous Folk Author: Budgielover Genres: Adventure ID: 546
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-18 06:47:15
A nail biting adventure in which Frodo disappears during the Quest and
his companions have to work together to save him.All the members of
the Fellowship shine in this gripping and exciting story and Frodo's
courage is astounding, as is the loyalty of his friends.A most
enjoyable read.

Title: To Be A King Author: Keiliss Races: Elves ID: 252
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-18 08:16:46
Spoilers!
An interesting look at Gil-galad as he considers the worth of his
inherited title of High King of the Noldor and what that entails.
Certainly the advice offered him by this foster father proves worth
following.

Wonderful description of Sirion as seen from Balar, and the
conversation between Cirdan and his fosterling is enlightening.

Title: Taking Roots Author: Imhiriel Genres: Romance: Drabbles
ID: 367
Reviewer: Tanaqui 2008-10-18 12:01:57
Spoilers!
In this drabble, Imhiriel has created a lovely rendering of a quiet
yet pivotal moment in Galadriel's long life, showing her planting the
first mallorn tress in Lorien. As a keen gardener myself who has been
doing my best over the past few years to soak up the accumulated
gardening wisdom of my mother, I very much recognise and appreciate
the way Imhiriel has shown Galadriel's uncertainty in doing a task
herself that she has only previously observed, Celeborn's gentle
support of his wife and her growing confidence. (There's really
nothing like doing it hands-on yourself under supervision to
understand what's involved!) I can clearly imagine the exchange of
looks here, and I love that this demonstrates so clearly that Celeborn
was not without his own "elven craft". Simply delightful.

Title: Journey's End Author: Ignoble Bard Times: Fourth Age and
Beyond: Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 234
Reviewer: Tanaqui 2008-10-18 12:02:09
Spoilers!
Ignoble Bard has created a lyrical word poem in this drabble. Using,
in the author's own lovely phrase, ["a language too impoverished to
clothe her"], she has incarnated this encounter between Aragorn and
Arwen so that it is vivid in the reader's mind. The piece has a lovely
rhythm and conveys both the physical and spiritual attractions and
bonds between its subjects. Lovely work.

Title: Of Dreams... Author: Avon Races: Men: General Fixed-Length
Ficlets ID: 7
Reviewer: Tanaqui 2008-10-18 12:02:22
Spoilers!
In this drabble about Aragorn accepting his destiny during the War of
the Ring, Avon creates some wonderful word-pictures of his life up to
that point. The drabble is extremely effectively structured to build
from the pastoral and personal to a heroic and historic note in the
final lines. Well done!

Title: Alqualond Author: Moreth Genres: Drama: General
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 220
Reviewer: Tanaqui 2008-10-18 12:02:50
Spoilers!
In these paired drabbles, Moreth gives us two perspectives on the
kinslaying at the Swanhavens that are chilling, moving and powerful.
Each piece starts with sharply drawn action that drops the reader into
the middle of the experience and conveys it intensity. In the space of
a few words, Moreth moves to thought and reflection, driving home the
the full horror of the Kinslayings without recourse to explicit
description. In concentrating on the reactions of these characters,
she provides a haunting portrait of the aftermath and consequences
that lingers in the reader's mind. Excellent writing!

Title: Feelings of Superiority Author: Gwynnyd Times: Multi-Age:
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 362
Reviewer: Tanaqui 2008-10-18 12:03:10
Spoilers!
Gwynnyd has created a series showing interactions between various
cultures which is entertaining, powerful and chilling by turns. My
particular favourite is the piece about the ["Tall Lords of
Rhovanion"] in which Gwynnyd manages to work within the confines of
Eomer's assertions that "The Men of the Mark do not lie" while proving
their ancestors to be wily horsetraders. By contrast, ["Numenorean
Largesse"] is disturbing in laying bare the pride and arrogance of
those favoured with the Land of the Gift, and showing the early
flowering of the attitudes that led to its loss. Very
thought-provoking ideas expressed in fine prose.

Title: Tangled Webs Author: Ribby Races: Men: Gondor Drabbles
ID: 100
Reviewer: Tanaqui 2008-10-18 12:03:23
Spoilers!
In this drabble, Ribby does an excellent job of crafting a metaphor
around the skill of weaving itself to show how our lives are
interconnected and supported by each other, and to provide a subtle
and effective commentary on Aragorn's life and his relationship with
Boromir in particular. Good work!

Title: Blood and Iron Author: Ribby Races: Elves: Drabbles ID: 122
Reviewer: Tanaqui 2008-10-18 12:03:35
Spoilers!
Ribby has taken another excellent and inventive concept and run
effectively with it in this drabble, looking at what might have been
involved and required in the reforging of Narsil into Anduril. The
final line is simply marvellous, with a beautiful rhetorical structure
delivering a powerful sentiment. Very nice work!

Title: Hope comes for Estel Author: stefaniab Genres: Drama:
Featuring Aragorn ID: 622
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-18 13:52:51
Spoilers!
A decidedly movie-verse work, here Aragorn finds himself wishing for
surety of acceptance as King as well as advice in how to establish his
rule, and he is visited by Faramir in the camp at Cormallen, who
offers both. Interesting concept,

Title: Apart Author: Nieriel Raina Genres: Drama: Gondor
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 551
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-18 14:02:57
Spoilers!
One of the most poignant of the Legolas/Gimli friendship stories, as
each acknowledges the potential volatility of their friendship and his
responsibility toward keeping it intact. The short vignettes are a
perfect form for the presentation of these thoughts, and the FLF
guarantees that each word and image is chosen carefully to increase
its impact.

Leaves one nodding for having read it and approving the choice of each
of the two of them.

Title: A Great Evil Unmade Author: Linaewen Genres: Alternate
Universe: Steward's Family ID: 267
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-18 14:10:26
Spoilers!
Having seen the Ringbearer wounded once more, he now appreciates the
true evil of the Ring and can see past its lies. And he has accepted
the commission laid upon him and now knows full well how it was that
Isildur was lost, there so long ago. His strength had brought him this
far, but has he enough for the last and will he succeed where others
would fail?

A remarkable tale of redemption dearly bought, so much so that it
makes the canon redemption pale by comparison. A most thoughtful and
satisfying AU story, and one well told as well as well worth the reading.

Title: Portrait of a Queen Author: Aruthir Races: Men ID: 338
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-18 14:23:38
Spoilers!
A fantastic series looking at the two ruling queens of Numenor and the
nature of propriety. Why does Tar-Ancalimae come to the one woman who
will follow her in her dreams, and why does the child ask ever about
her? Why does she not behave in a proper manner?

Each vignette is perfectly chosen, and we see the wilfullness and
determination of the child become the stubbornness of the woman and
the obsession of the crone. And through it all we see how thoughts of
propriety ever rule the actions or lack of actions of those who wear
the crown and wield the sceptre of Numenor.

Rather chilling and very satisfying.

Title: Captain of Mordor Author: draylon Times: Late Third Age
ID: 626
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-18 14:26:19
Spoilers!
A story so horrible in its way I regret I read it, particularly as I
find the premise disgusting. Yet it is compellingly written and the
images chosen very effective.

For those with a taste toward dark things and relationships, this will
be right up your alley.

Title: Confidence Author: annmarwalk Races: Men: Minas Tirith ID: 38
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-18 18:47:17
Spoilers!

Ann fills her stories with exquisite details. This is the point of
view of a very skilled and hard-working manservant who must anticipate
the needs of the future Steward of Gondor and carry them out properly.
The bit where Mormegil muses over the perfection of the razor is very
credible, as well as amusing.

And the epilogue, with Boromir going through the same motions as have
Mormegil and Denethor, is delightful; with an especially resonant, and
funny, last line.

Title: Parting Gifts Author: Fiondil Races: Cross-Cultural:
Post-Ring War ID: 452
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-18 20:32:53
Spoilers!
Sad yet hopeful, tinged with grief as well as with love and joy. The
deep friendship between Legolas and Gimli is conveyed extraordinarily
well. I admit that Gimli's enduring worship for Galadriel and his
farewell gift for her brought tears to my eyes. Yes, "champion" is
exactly the best way for Galadriel to describe him.

But what I liked most was his steadfastness and calm in the face of
death, instead being concerned about how upset Legolas is. And what a
wonderful gift he intended for his friend!

The characterisations are excellent, and the dialogue very realistic
and engaging. I found it a wonderful touch that Finrod Felagund was
one of Gimli's last visitors; and moving how after death, he was
welcomed by both Aul and Nmo.

Msg# 9503

MEFA Reviews for Saturday, October 18 (Part Two) Posted by annmarwalk October 18, 2008 - 19:15:55 Topic ID# 9503
Title: Good King Elessar Author: Dreamflower Races:
Cross-Cultural: Friendship ID: 2
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-18 20:33:26
Wonderful characterisations all around, especially of the Hobbits.
Dreamflower's take on Frodo-lad is absolutely convincing, you can see
both his parents in him, and yet he is his own person, shaped by being
heir to extraordinary events yet not being a direct part of it. I also
liked how he was described as being on the cusp between adolescence
and adult responsibility, with the adventurous spirit of adolescence
often winning over.

It was heart-warming to witness the intimate relationship here between
Aragorn and Frodo-lad, and how this episode offers them the
opportunity to get to know each other better.

The story has a lovely seasonal feel to it, just right for the premise
and the themes of the carol woven through it. There is a warmth there
and good winter cheer right from the start. And goodwill to all men!

Title: The Onion Riddle Author: Branwyn (Lady Branwyn) Races:
Cross-Cultural: Post-Ring War ID: 13
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-18 20:33:46
I like the many cross-cultural aspects of this story, which includes
not only Gondorians and Dwarves, but also indirecty Rohirrim.

The akwardness in dealing with a strange culture is conveyed very
well, that mix of intending to be polite and open, and yet have
preconceptions and misjudgements.

I guessed early on what the mystery was, but it was funny to follow
the hints and wait for the revelation.

Title: Moonset over Gondor Author: Raksha the Demon Genres: Drama:
Gondor Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 652
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-18 21:14:23
This was a nice glimpse into Faramir after the war. I particularly
like how Eowyn has become his confidante as well as wife. Those two
are well-matched, and Raksha shows how the complement each other well
here.

Title: Essecarm Author: Dawn Felagund Races: Elves: Family ID: 247
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-18 21:14:52
Spoilers!
I never would have thought how Feanor's giving his own father-name to
his fifth-born son would have affected those already born; yet Dawn
does a convincing job of doing this, and in her typical skilled
manner. I particularly loved the evocative descriptions of the cold;
having just walked home through cold rain, I can sympathize with how
that makes things more gloomy, and it was a very fitting setting for
such a story. Nice work, Dawn!

Title: The Dance Author: Dawn Felagund Genres: Romance: Elven
Lands ID: 128
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-18 21:15:03
Nerdanel is probably the character that keeps drawing me back to the
Quenta Silmarillion more than any other (what must it have been like
to be marred to an elf like Feanor!), and so it's perhaps not
surprising that I've read a lot of F/N romances. I think this is the
first one that I've come across, however, that had a true sense of
realism about it. There isn't the slightest bit of mushiness to be
found here, in fact, it reminded me of nothing so much as my first
middle-school dance. Geek that I am, I could completely identify with
Nerdanel but also with Anganer and Mahtan and a host of others. It was
a very fun read for anyone who has ever felt socially awkward. (Which
is, you know, pretty much everyone, especially in fandom.)

Beyond that, though, there is a kernel of truth not to be missed. It
seems that Nerdanel and Feanor are a much better match for each other
than anyone else could have been, and one wonders how much more later
events would have corrupted his character if he had not learned to
connect with another woman and his family - if he had taken a trophy
life? So buried underneath the fun, Dawn gives us a gleaming insight
into Feanor's character - for which I applaud her.

Title: In The Midst Of Summer Author: Cuthalion Genres: Drama:
Final Partings ID: 270
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-18 21:15:18
Spoilers!
This story does a touching job of portraying Sam in the wake of
Rosie's death. I could easily see just this combination of emotions
leading to his decision to sail west at last. Nicely done.

Title: The Fire of Hope Author: Raksha the Demon Races: Men:
Pre-Ring War Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 625
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-18 21:15:28
Spoilers!
This story is full of some absolutely gorgeous imagery, especially
regarding Aragorn's description of Arwen. It was easy to see why he
loved her so much - much more clear than as described by Tolkien
himself, actually! A nice glimpse into Aragorn's thoughts.

Title: Where the Sky Kisses the Horizon, There My Dreams Lie Author:
Lindelea Races: Cross-Cultural: Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 689
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-18 23:02:20
Spoilers!
A deeply moving glimpse of Aragorn and Legolas comforting the
unconscious and injured Frodo with an Elven cloak.A lovely moment
showing the depths of caring and affection that exist between the
fellowship members.

Msg# 9504

MEFA Reviews for Sunday, October 19, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 19, 2008 - 20:10:49 Topic ID# 9504
Title: The Right to Bear Arms Author: Pearl Took Genres: Humor:
Elven Lands ID: 653
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-19 01:15:42
I love this encounter between Boromir and the hobbits. Pippin's
audacity is so very much in character here--Boromir does not yet know
him, or the other hobbits well, but he is about to find out a few
rather unexpected things about them!

Title: Risk Assessment Author: pandemonium_213 Races: Elves ID: 665
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-19 06:47:08
I have never much thought about the society that must have existed in
Eregion, but I really like this take on it. It is vivid, consistent
and persuasive, with well-chosen details and evocative descriptions,
especially regarding infrastructure and architecture.

It's a fascinating look into the day-to-day life and work of ordinary
Elves in a diverse community with admitted tensions between Sindarin
and Noldor.

The main character has an engaging personality, and I was interested
in following her through her day. And what an intriguing, inventive
take on the properties of lembas! The philosophical discussion about
the differences between belief and science was short but very incisive
and thought-provoking, and I admit it lingered long after I ended the
story.

Title: Wayward Sons Author: Jael Races: Elves ID: 408
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-19 06:47:34
Thranduil's fatalistic world-weariness is conveyed very evocatively,
not only in his characterisation, but also in the descriptions and in
the whole gloomy atmosphere of the story. It's nice to see him (and
his realm) come back to life when those he loves most return, and I
much enjoyed the bantering tone of the later half of the story.

The take on the fading of the Elven realms is persuasive, and woven
very smoothly into the narrative as a telling backdrop to the actual plot.

There is a fine eye to detail in this story in the descriptions, and a
well-handled cast of characters. And kudos for such an excellent
choice of a poem to accompany the story!

Title: As Was Dwarven Tradition Author: Nieriel Raina Races:
Dwarves ID: 553
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-19 07:07:31
Spoilers!
Ah, our Gimli, now two hundred, is the master of the feast, but knows
grief that one person he's come to love doesn't appear likely to make
it. To hear the toasts and boasts and all is wonderful, but there's
one whose toasts and boasts he wishes most to hear, whose presence he
desires. To hear that one voice raised at the last had to have been
such a relief after the ongoing anxiety and disappointment, and the
growing acceptance he'd known that this one could well not make it in
time.

A wonderful look at how Dwarven birthday traditions MIGHT have taken
shape, and the strength of the friendship between Gimli the Dwarf and
Legolas the Elf, as well as the growing acceptance of this
non-traditional friendship by Gimli's own people. How strange, and
over time, marvelous the Dwarves of Erebor, the Iron Hills, and
Aglarond must have found the companionship and feelings of fraternity
between the son of Thranduil and the son of Gloin!

The voice in which the story is told is excllent, and the descriptions
of the surroundings and Gimli's growing disappointment are marvelous.
Here indeed Tolkien's world does indeed shine through! How fortunate
we are to have such celebrations as this to imagine, and one such as
Nieriel Raina to tell it to us!

Title: Young Fanro Makes A Stone Author: Oshun Genres: Humor:
Valar & Maiar ID: 77
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-19 16:44:17
Spoilers!
An interesting manner of creating the Elessar--growing it similarly to
a sugar crystal?

And I'm rather glad Aule didn't give him the keys!

Yes, an interesting look at Feanor and his relationship with Aule and
his work within Aule's forge.

Title: A Treasured Piece of Cloth Author: Golden Races: Hobbits:
Family ID: 600
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-19 16:58:01
Spoilers!
To break a child from a comfort item, whether a cuddle cloth or
blankee or binky or whatever it might be, is never fully easy; and I
rejoice apparently a bit of magic lingered there in Bilbo's house,
perhaps in that firecracker, to allow the comfort to continue as it did.

Lovely story, gently and imaginatively solving the problem.

Title: The Myth of the One Ring's Power Author: Dreamflower
Genres: Non-Fiction ID: 532
Reviewer: pandemonium_213 2008-10-19 18:12:42
Anyone who begins her thesis with [I know it sounds a bit
controversial] and then proceeds to pick apart a myth with such
precision has my admiration. Dreamflower writes a well-executed
argument that not only debunks the apparent misconceptions within
fandom concerning the One Ring's power, but also sheds light on the
various personalities and motivations of those touched by the One Ring
from its inventor to its destroyer.

Dreamflower's essay is very well-written and referenced beautifully.
She creates her argument in a steady logical progression with which
she reaches a most satisfying conclusion. Her arguments convincingly
illustrate that the One Ring works through the characteristics of
those who are tempted by it -- and fall to it -- or to those who are
able to reject it.

I also read this as commentary on how myth can obscure fact, such as
they are in a mythopoeitically* created world. Just like Elendil at an
alleged 8 feet in height stands at a truly larger than life in myth
(and in the "reality" of JRRT's secondary world was probably much
shorter), so the One Ring's influence is not all encompassing, or
"generic," if you will, but instead individualized.

Excellent essay, Dreamflower, and quite thought-provoking.

*Yes, a goofy neologism. I can't resist them.

Title: The Revenge of Curufin's Horse Author: Moreth Genres: Humor
ID: 139
Reviewer: pandemonium_213 2008-10-19 18:43:43
Spoilers!
Humo(u)r within the Tolkienian framework is a tricky thing. In some
works of fan fiction, it is done well, and in others, well, not so
much. [The Revenge of Curufin's Horse] fits snugly into the former
category.

The story is executed well technically and is engaging with its
irreverent humor. Using great word choices and overall construction,
Moreth builds up a bit of tension and allows us look at Celegorm
licking his wounds. The subject and its conclusion (which still gets a
chuckle out of me after many readings) are delicious and will
certainly appeal to Fanorian loyalists. It's gratifying to know that
Celegorm and Curufin got a good laugh out of turgid poetry, their
amusement true to Noldorin form.

A most excellent -- and funny -- MEFA debut for Moreth!

Title: The Ghost in the Garden Author: Dawn Felagund Races: Elves
ID: 272
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-19 19:58:20
As I've come to expect from Dawn's stories, the language is elegant
and lyrical, and perfectly tuned to the situation, with a great
capacity for evocative metaphors and turns of phrase that both
enriches the plot itself as well as the "tapestry" of the wider narrative.

The observations and descriptions are sharp and incisive; the dialogue
and character interaction smooth and realistic.

In this story, the opening paragraph swept me away and plunged me into
the "reality" of the story - I could see it, feel it, smell it. I
found Galadriel's perspective on the Sindar and what their thoughts
might be about Valinor and the Noldor who fled it highly interesting.

The uncanny situation is built up very well, increasing mystery and
tension likewise. And I admit the description of the apparation sent a
chill down my spine... To learn the history of him made it only more
haunting and sad.

Title: The Lowest Circle Author: Tanaqui Races: Elves: Drabbles
ID: 449
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-19 21:50:29
This drabble is almost like a documentary in that it so clearly
presents just how sanity and thought and *being* unravel, and is
transformed into something fundamentally opposed and unrecognisable
"other". Disturbing, because as you're reading, your thoughts follow
the thoughts of the protagonist and you almost feel them flitting away
like his do. This line best exemplifies it: ["For a long time he
remembered, or thought he remembered, or perhaps only imagined..."].

There is a dark, perverted majesty to the tone, which I think may come
from the well-chosen title and the implications that come with it. I
thought that the relative "vagueness" of describing exactly what is
happening fit very well into this.

Title: The War of Wrath Author: Tanaqui Races: Elves: Drabbles
ID: 120
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-19 21:51:35
Oh, bravo! To combine the requirements of a drabble with the even
stricter formulas of a poem, and to do so with grace and eloquence and
creativeness - chapeau!

This is a wonderfully inventive peek at and a convincing take of a
very neglected character in Tolkien's cosmos. I love how the structure
and content of the poem brings up echoes of a similar poem of
Tolkien's about Erendil (perhaps even with a dash of the poem about
Gil-Galad), yet is completely its own creation and adapted to its own
purpose.

The tone, the language and the rhythm are employed deftly to
underscore the content. The meters scan without a hitch and without
compromising the flow and understanding of the words, which are chosen
with obvious care. They serve the triple purpose of telling a straight
story, combining to a metaphorical layer, and serving the strictures
of the poem.

And in doing so, Tanaqui sketches a fine picture of a heroic, bright,
shining figure deserving of this accolade.

Title: Taking Roots Author: Imhiriel Genres: Romance: Drabbles
ID: 367
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-19 21:51:49
Spoilers!
*happy sigh* It's so nice to think of Celeborn and Galadriel in these
rare moments of peace, both with themselves and with each other. I
love the inversion of which one is usually seen as certain and which
is usually more doubting. I don't doubt that Celeborn was sure of
himself in "his" spheres, and trees and Middle-earth botany would
certainly be part of that for a lord of the galadh. It speaks highly
of their relaitonship that they are comfortable exposing their
weaknesses to each other, and Imhiriel captures that very well.

Title: Hearts of Stone Author: Elen Kortirion Races: Men: General
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 12
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-19 21:52:00
Spoilers!
I love explorations of treasures, relics, and other *things* loved and
collected by Arda's residents; and this drabble set certainly meets
that description. I loved particularly the second drabble, describing
the many uses of the stones Aragorn collected. There's a story in each
one, and the way Kortirion hints at it gives Aragorn a truly amazing
sense of depth.

Title: Feet That Wander Author: Linaewen Races: Cross-Cultural
ID: 576
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-19 21:52:11
Spoilers!
I had never thought of Boromir interacting with Tom Bombadil, but
given his shall we say circuitous root (really, 110 days?) it is
entirely possible. I really like the fact that he had a connection to
the northern kings through the Barrows, and the reference to his
previous experience with the Nazgul tied in nicely with the larger
canon. All in all, it was a very creative and well-told story, that I
could easily see having happened.

Title: Seas of Fate Author: Thundera Tiger Races: Cross-Cultural:
Elves and Men ID: 487
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-19 21:52:36
Spoilers!
I have a bit of an inverted relationship to this story, as I am sure
most people who read it long before they read its sequel, "Seaworthy."
I, however, read "Seaworthy" first, so found that "Seas of Fate"
provided some very nice background as well as being an enjoyable story
in its own right.

Like "Seaworthy" (and indeed, like most of this author's stories),
"Seas of Fate" is one parttop-notch characterization, ote part
gapfiller, and one part philosophy. I found Thundera's exploration of
why the sea could not be mastered to be fascinating, complimenting
without duplicating her treatment of why Legolas wasn't ready to sail
yet. Read in light of that later piece, one aspect of "Seas of Fate"
tha tjumped out at me was the deeper meaning behind Legolas's desire
to keep his lessons secret. There is of course the practical matter,
but also I sense a conflict in who he wants to be that becomes much
more obvious in the later work. Yet that conflict is there. This is
just many ways that the characterization transcends this vignette into
something that feels teally authentic.

I really enjoyed this, and found it a convincing and thought-provoking
gapfiller. Nice work, Thundera.

Title: The Edge of the Knife Author: Dwimordene Genres: Alternate
Universe: Other Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 274
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-19 21:52:46
Spoilers!
It's a bit surprising, when you think about it, how close history came
to utter ruin in Tolkien's universe. That's of course true of the
Fellowship, but perhaps even moreso for Isildur. Dwimordene shows
masterfully the many ways that his life could have turned out worse
than it ended up and a few times, how it could have turned out
better. She is well-known as a master of AU, yet for all of their
doom-and-gloom these drabbles feel natural, not at all weighed down as
they might have been if recorded by a less nimble pen.

Of all the moments portrayed in this series, I think I most "enjoyed"
(if one can even use that term) the final one. There is a nice
dichotomy between the idea in Tolkien's draft that Gollum would allow
himself to fall into Orodruin having possessed the Ring once more
(which I actually like much more than the idea in the final draft. And
the reference to Buridan's ass
[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buridan%27s_ass%5d was inspired. Nicely
conceived, and nicely put.


Title: Broken Star Author: pandemonium_213 Races: Villains:
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 54
Reviewer: elfscribe 2008-10-19 22:33:05
Spoilers!
This is a superb example of the short form that tells a whole story in
a single defining moment. In this ficlet, Sauron as Annatar attempts
to torture information about the Rings from his former friend,
Celebrimbor. Everything about this little gem is effective from the
choice of first person narrator that allows one to feel the momentary
sting of regret that Sauron feels (and thus to my mind increases the
horror), to word choices such as Sauron <i>gently</i> pushing
Celebrimbor's hair away (ah the power of the much reviled adverb), to
the opening vision of him [naked and vulnerable, a broken star of the
House of Fanro bound at four points]. There is also much in here
about the power of names - Sauron recoils at the use of that name, and
he in turn uses an endearment "brother-of-my-heart" which sums up the
depth of his betrayal. I can well imagine the effect on poor
Celebrimbor. Absolutely chilling and tragic. Well done!

Title: Chasing Blackie Author: Pearl Took Times: Mid Third Age:
Eriador ID: 655
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-19 22:36:11
Spoilers!
A story that is very cute, that of little Pippin chasing after an
imaginary kitten, saved from over-sentimentality by the excellent
characterisation of his long-suffering mother as she cleans him up and
draws out the tale of how exactly he came to have a bloody nose in the
first place. There's a gentle humor in the story that is very appealing.

Title: A Meeting in the Tower Hills Author: Imhiriel Races:
Cross-Cultural: Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 374
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-19 22:46:11
Spoilers!
The Second Age often strikes me as the neglected step-child of Tolkien
fanfiction, sandwiched between tales of doomed and brooding Feanorians
in the First Age and the rise of both Sauron and Mankind and the
Hobbits in the Third Age. Imhiriel is one of the few, the proud, the
gifted writers who consistently prove me wrong in her visits to this
fascinating epoch. Here, she spotlights a pivotal step in Numenorean
and M-e history with a lovely and thought-provoking and humorous
drabble. I like the sense of coming-together, which is a key theme in
Tolkien's work, as two long sundered branches of Edain make a
bewildered but determined new contact.

Title: Another Prometheus Author: Gandalfs apprentice Races:
Cross-Cultural: Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 85
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-19 23:03:39
Spoilers!
Gandalf postulates, through the lens of a Fourth Age teacher, a very
different interpretation of Feanor's relationship with the Valar and
the Silmarils than is written in the Silmarillion. This is an
intriguing look at the interplay of history, legend, and time. The
Fourth Age is far removed from direct contact with the Valar and the
direct influence of either the Noldor or Melkor and Sauron; and
perhaps the awe with which those forces were once viewed has waned;
and a myth of a single creative genius defying all great Powers rises
to greater significance.

I personally cannot see Feanor as Prometheus, unless one postulates
that the description of his words and actions in the Silmarillion were
inaccurate/lies - and that's a whole other kettle of fish. But this
drabble is skillfully written and makes the reader think, and think
hard, about the cycle of myth/legend/time/history.


Title: There and Back Author: Dana Races: Cross-Cultural:
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 89
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-19 23:15:33
Spoilers!
I love the use of this particular title for Pippin's last, and in some
respects, greatest journey of all his Ring War travels; complete with
coda by a recovering Beregond after the battle is won and done.
Pippin's grim yet practical thoughts are well-written; and Beregond is
also characterised quite well.

Msg# 9505

MEFA Reviews for Monday, October 20, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 20, 2008 - 20:01:32 Topic ID# 9505
Title: The Dwarves Treasure Author: eiranae Races: Dwarves ID: 312
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-20 04:37:09
Spoilers!
Shades of Captain Carrot! Terry Pratchett would recognize Mireth, I
think! All she needs is a famous sword!

I'm sorry--I love the Discworld books, and this brought things to mind
is all!

A group of Elves headed from Rivendell to Mirkwood to see relatives
there has been slaughtered just as Gandalf and Balin, returning from a
visit to the Shire, come on the scene. Gandalf sees to it that Balin
doesn't appropriate any of the obvious things--necklaces, swords,
other jewelry or weapons; but he doesn't see the chest under the
shrubbery that Balin manages to spirit away to Erebor--and opens to
find perhaps the greatest treasure of all!

Now, you need to finish this--I want to read the rest of the story!

Title: Eucatastrophe: The Return Author: Dreamflower Genres:
Alternate Universe ID: 617
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-20 05:09:58
Spoilers!
Haven't many of us wished that Frodo could have returned from the
Undying Lands hale and whole, and that the Elves did not fade or
leave? Dreamflower's Eucatastrophe stories make that wish come true;
for the Elves, and the ring-bearing hobbits, can go back and forth
from the West at will.

Frodo's return is written with joy and credibility; and the hobbits
reuniting for a far gentler adventure is great fun. Good descriptions
of Merry's wedding. I'd have liked to see more of Finrod, but this was
a hobbit story after all...

Title: The Misty Month Author: Le Rouret Races: Cross-Cultural:
Post-Ring War ID: 454
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-20 05:10:10
Spoilers!
A wonderful unexpected birth story, with Eowyn stranded in Anorien,
relying on the most unconventional midwife while others go in haste to
fetch her husband and brother.

Well described and with a good sense of place.

Title: One Equal Temper of Heroic Hearts Author: Gwynnyd Genres:
Romance: Gondor ID: 334
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-20 06:06:35
Spoilers!
When does desire wain? For Aragorn and Arwen, not even alleged old age
seems to be an impediment!

This is sensual without being titillating, intimate at the same time
it is open. The question is charming, and the thoughts on whom to
discuss the question with are humorous. And the ending--ah, but the
ending is perfect--perfectly delightful for us as well as these two as
they accept that there need be no waining for them!

Gwynnyd has truly wrought a wonder here, and I so thank her for it!

Title: Lily Took Author: Cathleen Races: Hobbits: Childhood ID: 147
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-20 06:15:39
Spoilers!
How wonderful when an argument between Pippin and his pink knitted
piglet Tulip ends in meeting a new member of the family!

The story is charming, the descriptions delightful, and the final
image is just wonderful. Like Snowflake and Lily, I'd love to join
this family! Sweet and properly fluffy--just right for a Pippin and
Tulip tale. And a wonderful disposition for a new blanket, even if
Eglantine doesn't agree! Heh!

Title: Amara Author: Claudia Genres: Mystery ID: 236
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-20 06:38:16
Spoilers!
This is a tale worthy of the Arabian Nights, a tale of haunting beauty
of a haunting beauty, once encountered by Faramir as he and his men
lay in wait for the coming of an army of Haradrim.

Who was Amara? Woman, ghost, Djinn? Why did she feel compelled to warn
Faramir of the danger his soldiers faced when he denied her
invitation? And why is the dream then apparently repeating itself--and
to the one who heard the tale from Faramir's lips?

Very sensual, and delightfully shivery.

Title: Trinity Author: pandemonium_213 Times: Modern Times ID: 51
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-20 06:46:31
Spoilers!
A truly fascinating and thought provoking story which I thank the
random story feature for pointing me to., I don't usually read either
modern times or Simarillion stories. I love the way you use Tolkien's
characters to explore some of the great moral dilemmas of our age. I
recall seeing in a TV Programme about Oppenheimer quoting the Bhaghad
Gita and you make good use of that powerful work here. I greatly
enjoyed this engrossing story and am sure it will linger in my mind.I
always have thought the One Ring has some similar properties to the
Atom bomb,both in Tolkien and Wagner's epics.

Title: Wars of the Valar Author: Fiondil Genres: Longer Works ID: 3
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-20 06:51:31
Spoilers!
A fascinating look at the creation of Ea and Arda, and the internecine
war begun by Melkor as he seeks to keep the world on which Eru's
Children are to live from being completed, told mostly from the point
of view of Namo.

From the moment those of the Ainur who chose to enter Ea stepped into
the nascent universe they'd helped to bring into being, they felt the
delight of being part of Atar's plan and the responsibility inherent
in helping to bring it to be. Music and physics each have their part
to play in the creation of the celestial bodies, as well as fun--and
the horrors of betrayal. We see the triumph of setting up nurseries
from which stars are born and the grief of having to sweep up the
resulting shards--and having to sacrifice one's masterpieces--to
protect the world that will one day serve as home to Eru's children.
And though this world is marred by Melkor, one gets the feeling he
cannot destroy it, for in giving up the joy of co-creation, the fallen
Vala has lost an appreciation for the persistent delight of living a
full life and the stubborn persistence that keeps even the most deeply
wounded seeking to find delight in spite of Melkor's machinations.

The story is well written and fast-paced, and an excellent blend of
science, fantasy, myth, spirtuality, and fact. It is interesting to
watch the young Valar develop and deal with Melkor's assaults, many of
which include a form of spiritual rape. I am always pleased to see a
new chapter posted.

Title: Engineering Author: SurgicalSteel Races: Men: Minas Tirith
ID: 696
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-20 06:58:53
Spoilers!
Many of us have come to love Serind, the outspoken chief surgeon from
the Houses of Healing whose relationships with Denethor and Aragorn
were in such contrast. In this story we see what it was that drew her
to surgery, and how she dealt with the treatment of her own injuries.

She and Galion, who will ever be known to her as "Fish," are well
depicted as children. Surgical Steel has captured the characters of
the two of them very well, and shows us the two healers in the making
with all their strengths and foibles, endearing them to us even now.
This story also gives us telling glimpses into the organization of the
Houses of Healing and a bit of their politics as well as offering us
wonderful character studies. We get small glimpses both of what
brought them to this place as well as hints of what they will become,
both to the world in which they live and to one another was their
lives continue. No, not to love, but to the depths of a friendship to
warm the heart. And we see the stubbornness and integrity growing as
they come to appreciate one another in spite of their initial rivalry
that will so mark them as mature healers.

As with all her works, this is intriguing and well researched, and it
easily captures our imaginations, and makes it easier to to appreciate
how difficult and yet rewarding it can be to choose healing as a
profession.

Title: The Librarian Author: Jay of Lasgalen Races: Elves: Family
ID: 700
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-20 19:21:23
Very entertaining, all the more as it was being told through the eyes
of the adults witnessing Legolas' antics!

The characterisations shine; and I loved small, inquisitive Legolas.
Good, lively descriptions, and well-handled dialogue all make the
story come alive.

And the comedic timing is excellent! I kept giggling at every new
revelation piling on top of one another as the story went on.

Title: Shadows Author: Bodkin Races: Elves: Family ID: 698
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-20 19:23:11
Beautifully told; I liked the almost languid feel to the language and
the mood it evokes. Lyrical descriptions which highten the meaning of
the scenes.

I could really feel just how deeply wounded and almost shell-shocked
Legolas was at seeing so much senseless destruction he was not there
to prevent during the War of the Ring (and not recognising there would
have been precious little he could have done *had* been present). The
slow unfolding memories that connect present grief with past horror
are very effectively told, and provide insight into just why Legolas'
reaction is so stark.

The use of intertwining perspectives of almost, but not quite
connecting "protagonists" was a very effective - and affecting -
touch. I liked the little bit of uncertainty in it, that Legolas not
quite knows - even at the very end - if what he feels is reality or
wishful thinking, whereas I as reader am provided with additional insight.

Title: Wizards' Pupils Author: Altariel Races: Men: Minas Tirith
ID: 108
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-20 23:43:21
Spoilers!
Altariel is one of my favorite Tolkien fanfiction writers; and not
only because she usually writes of my favorite Tolkien human
character. She has a wonderful ability to plumb the psychological and
political depths in an elegant, minimalist and frequently
heart-rending way. This story has layers upon layers, and all of them
fascinate. What I loved best about the story was the flashback of
Faramir's meeting with Saruman (and Altariel's rendition of Saruman is
outstanding) and the reaffirmation of Faramir's bond with Mithrandir.
The love and trust between the Grey Pilgrim and Faramir is beautifully
written here; a wonderful contrast between the interplay of Faramir
and Saruman, and the relationship of Faramir with his own father. The
pain of Faramir's sudden realization that his father is enthralled by
Saruman's insidious and rather poisonous counsel is conveyed with
great skill; the reader feels the boy's fear and confusion that follow
his moment of clarity.

I must also mention a particularly Neat Bit - Faramir describes the
respect and trust given him by Mithrandir, after his having been
dismissed as a callow innocent by his father and Saruman and others,
as [a mighty gift] - the same phrase used by Denethor in ROTK to
reproach Faramir with what Denethor believed Boromir would have
brought him - namely, the One Ring.

Though I am ambivalent about Elboron's ultimate decision, I found this
to be a very insightful story about Faramir's past as well as his
relationship with his son.

Msg# 9506

MEFA Reviews for Tuesday, October 21, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 21, 2008 - 20:16:59 Topic ID# 9506
Title: Denial Author: Oshun Races: Elves: House of Finwe ID: 80
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-21 07:25:45
Engaging style, with vivid descriptions and dialogues. I like this
take on the relationship between Maedhros and Maglor in their youth -
bantering and annoying each other one moment, affectionate and being
concerned about one another in the next.

Title: Comfort Author: Bodkin Races: Elves: House of Elrond ID: 161
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-21 07:26:13
I like the round-about way the narrative takes to come to the "meat"
of the story. I was kept engaged in trying to figure it out
beforehand, collecting hints as they came and slowly completing the
picture.

Excellent dialogue; and excellent *balance* between this
dialogue-heavy story and enough description to anchor the scene in
time and place. Every line, every motion, every description of a
detail, is designed to not tell, but *show* the emotions of the twins.

It was nice to have the humorous touch at the end - for Elrohir as
well as for the readers, I'm sure.

Title: WOUNDS: Invisible Scars Author: Fiondil Races: Elves: House
of Finwe ID: 57
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-21 07:27:47
Spoilers!
This story explores a very thought-provoking premise (and which I,
frankly, had never thought about before). Many authors theorise a
certain amount of time for Reborn Elves in a process of adjustment to
their death, rebirth, and release from the Halls of Mandos. How
difficult must it be to adjust to a new body? A flawless, unmarked
body? How much time and conscious will does it take, and how great is
the shift of perception to identify with this body, which shows none
of the marks time and history have left upon them? As Finrod rightly
says, ["It's almost as if nothing happened"].

I'm glad Fiondil raises the question, offers some pertinent thoughts
of comfort or explanation, but eschews an easy answer or a neatly-tied
solution. And I very much appreciate that the story closes with the
idea that there are also invisible wounds that never go away, not even
by being reborn.

Title: Taking Roots Author: Imhiriel Genres: Romance: Drabbles
ID: 367
Reviewer: Oshun 2008-10-21 12:36:28
This is a lovely drabble about Eowyn actually, but shedding some light
on both the Third Age and the First Age Finduilas. I agree with
Finduilas of Gondor and Dol Amroth, that I would have been less than
wildly enthusiastic about constantly being presented with versions of
the girm and tragic story of Finduilas of Nargothrond. I got a chuckle
because you hit a nerve for me. I have been forced, in the past year
in my own research projects more times than I would have liked, to
look at the fates of those entertwined with the doom of Hurin's children.

Title: A Race, To Be Like Me Author: Imhiriel Races: Elves:
Drabbles ID: 375
Reviewer: Oshun 2008-10-21 12:44:37
I like this drabble very much, although I wonder if I read too much of
my own perspective into it. I appreciated the comparsion of Feanor to
Prometheus and also the foreshadowing of tragedy of the outcome of
Feanor's fervent belief that he was following in his father's
footsteps and providing much needed leadership for both his sons and
his entire people.

Title: The Healers from the Sea Author: Mews1945 Genres: Drama:
Hurt/Comfort ID: 202
Reviewer: aliensouldream 2008-10-21 13:25:57
Spoilers!
I loved the idea behind this story and it was filled with very
beautiful imagery. It shows a great sympathy with the process of
healing and Frodo's emotional state. Frodo is shown at such a low
point at the beginning, still suffering from the Morgul sickness and
from the grief of leaving his beloved friends behind. Even surrounded
by the love, respect and care of those with him, he is very desolate.
I liked the idea that he is gradually stirred to life by the beauty
and wonder of the physical world around him. His encounter with the
dolphins is very special and magical and I like the idea that he has
some mystical connection with them. He shows once again the bravery
and faith that has brought him thus far in his journey and a
re-emergence of the excitement and curiosity that his younger self
displayed towards the Elves. This story was so well imagined and
described, and fits the characterisation of Frodo so well that it
feels as if it could be canon. It was a delight to read and lingers in
the memory.

Title: Seven Stones and Seven Stars and One White Tree Author:
shirebound Races: Other Beings ID: 121
Reviewer: Pearl Took 2008-10-21 15:31:24
Spoilers!
This is a collection of three beautiful vignettes written from very
unusual perspectives. The stones are not the ones that are normally
meant in the quote that is the title of the collection but are the
stones of long abandoned towns in the realm of Hollin. The stars are
the el-anor flowers of Lorien. Only the White Tree fits the quote,
although even it is not the one the quote refers to.

These various things comment on the passing of the Fellowship of the
Ring through their lands, or of the call upon them to waken to greet
the new age.

The stories are short but mesmerizing. They touch the deep wonder of
Middle-earth. As usual, shirebound doesn't dissapoint her readers.

Title: Farewell Author: agape4gondor Genres: Drama: Final Partings
ID: 127
Reviewer: Pearl Took 2008-10-21 16:03:30
A deeply moving look at the relationship of Boromir and Faramir.
Tolkien makes it clear that there was deep love between the brothers,
it is also clear that the vision about seeking the sword that was
broken was Faramir's, yet Boromir is given the task of seeking
Imladris and the answers. This story deals with the feelings both
brother's have over this turn of events and how Boromir sees them and
their father in the coming time of peril.

Both brothers fear that they will never see each other again and that
too is part of the burden being shared here, how do you say good bye
when it might very well be for the last time.

Agape has shown her usual deep and loving relationship with these two
men of Gondor.

Title: Symbols of Love Author: Larner Genres: Adventure ID: 130
Reviewer: Pearl Took 2008-10-21 17:33:01
A wondrous tale woven by Larner, a master story teller.

The item that inspires the title does not enter into the story until
near the end, although, one could say that the entire story is told
from the point of view of *symbols of love* - for are not our children
such symbols? Aragorn's son, Eldarion, and Faramir's son, Elboron are
the ones through whom we follow this tale. The early parts of it let
us see that the two young men are on their first trip to the hidden
Henneth Annun, a trip granted to them because they have each attained
a certain level of ability as Rangers.

But as they finally bed down for the night in the hideaway, we are
introduced to the item that gives the story its title; an unexpected
item of King Aragorn Elessar's. His telling of its meaning to him
brings tears to the eyes.

A beautiful and touching story!

Title: Heart of the Wood Author: Kenaz Races: Cross-Cultural:
Friendship ID: 60
Reviewer: elfscribe 2008-10-21 17:40:10
Spoilers!
In its themes of fate, friendship, and the contrast between the
youthful, hot blood of men and the ancient, wise, and yet deeply-felt
yearning of the elves, and in its formally elegant and musical
language, this story feels like an authentic extension of the
Silmarillion.

The characterizations of both Turin and Beleg are excellent: Turin as
an impetuous, emotional, somewhat immature human, and Beleg as the
wise elf, denying his own feelings because he knows what it will mean
if he doesn't. The contrast in their personalities made for a good
conflict. From the first moment we see Turin entering with the [air
blustering behind him like a reproach,] totally bent because they had
a fight without him and Beleg's calm reaction to him. Elements that I
liked: Beleg's elvishness expressed in such actions as the song he
sings to sharpen the sword, talking to the trees, and hearing sorrow
in the stream;Turin's jealousy when he witnesses the scene betwen
Beleg and Dagnir. Turin is nothing if not passionate; and how often
much is said when actually little is said:

Kenaz's writing is, as always elegant and somewhat formal, eminently
suitable for the subject. The paragraph that most stood out for me was
this:
["I have seen the wind in fleshly form, Trin thought with awe.
Beleg's horse was but an extension of his body, a living manifestation
of beauty and prowess. His expression, fleetingly as Trin had seen
it, was focused and determined, yet untroubled by tension. Trin had
seen him thus in battle, composed even as the foe swarmed thick around
him: a perfection of form and purpose annealed by mastery of skill. In
the face of such a vision, Trin hardly had the heart to spur his
horse further. He watched Beleg fly out of sight beyond the curve of
the road, breathless with the potency of his vision."]
Definitely a potent vision that shows us an elf through a man's eyes.
The ending is so deeply tragic. Poor faithful Beleg. I went back and
read the opening poem after I read the story and it actually brought a
tear to my eye as a perfect accompaniment to the story. All in all, a
beautifully crafted piece.



Title: The Secret of the Wooden Wall Author: Lily Genres: Mystery
ID: 630
Reviewer: Antane 2008-10-21 17:49:41
An interesting story. I especially love that Paladin is aware of
Frodo's light and that dear lad's excitement over the Sight. He must
have some of the 'fairy blood' in him too for he did dream of
Gandalf's escape, of the Sea, and foretold much of Sam's future. A
very special lad that one.

Title: The Least of Rings Author: Marta Genres: Alternate
Universe: Drabbles ID: 621
Reviewer: Antane 2008-10-21 17:55:22
A powerfully written drabble and that fight could have happened,
though it's frightening to read that fought was too weak a word. I can
imagine it to be quite violent and who would win?



Title: Secrets Author: Aprilkat Races: Hobbits: Hurt/Comfort ID: 229
Reviewer: Antane 2008-10-21 18:03:00
Oh, I love that ending - Rosie revealing her little secret! That would
indeed give Frodo some strength to hold on to. I'm glad she was there
for him, even if he didn't want his Sam to be bothered. Bless her.

Title: The Apprentice Author: pandemonium_213 Races: Villains ID: 52
Reviewer: Moreth 2008-10-21 18:46:10
This story is undoubtedly one of the most innovative fanfics I have
read. Pandemonium takes the (rather sparse) canon concerning the
making of the Rings and turns it into a complex and detailed account
of the last days of Ost-in-Edhel.

The story is told through the eyes of Smaril, the apprentice of the
title, and follows his experiences from the glory days of the Jewel
Smiths to the inevitable fall and destruction of their city. Smaril
is offered the chance to study with the greatest masters of his craft,
and therefore caught up intimately in the catastophic events that
overtake them.

The characters are brilliantly drawn and very humanly complex in their
motives. The interaction between them, especially between Smaril and
his master, are thoroughly believable and draw the reader deeply into
the story and the events of the Second Age. The final destruction of
all Celebrimbor and the Jewel Smiths have worked so hard to build is
heart-breaking...

Pandemonium has also brought a strong element of science into the
writing, which seems completely appropriate for a piece concerning
Elven Smiths. How can one not be delighted by a story in which one of
Smaril's examination questions is: ['Determine the eutectic point of
an iron-mithril alloy']?

A superbly crafted story!


Title: Lost Author: Claudia Genres: Adventure ID: 226
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-21 20:13:09
Spoilers!
A very creepy bit of speculation--what if the Ring had been lost in
the early days of the Quest? Yet it's not AU. Frodo's panic and the
reactions of the others are very believable...

Yet why did it happen in the first place? That the author does not
answer that question leaves the reader with a bit of unease--in a good
way.

Title: The Queen's Gift Author: Queen Galadriel Races: Elves:
Other Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 697
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-21 20:13:33
Spoilers!
Queen Galadriel gives Arwen a very lovely voice here. We see her deep
compassion and gratitude to Frodo as she contemplates his future.

Title: The Shadow Author: Linda Hoyland Genres: Drama: Ring War
Drabbles ID: 25
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-21 20:13:58
This is a very haunting drabble, as Frodo finds himself tormented by
the memory of the one who took the Ring into the Fire--the way in
which he identifies with Gollum is all too plausible and sad.

Title: Hope Remains Author: Baggins Babe Times: Fourth Age and
Beyond ID: 118
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-21 20:15:17
Spoilers!
["Hope Remains"] is the perfect title for this little story of a
King's love for a very special group of subjects, a love which even
time and death cannot completely sever. It's a very touching notion. I
could easily see Elessar's request, and the way in which it was
granted, especially in Baggins Babe's universe.

And I love the idea of Strider keeping watch.

Title: Riding the Waves Author: Claudia Times: Fourth Age and
Beyond ID: 211
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-21 20:15:57
I love this glimpse of a joyful and exhilirated Frodo enjoying the sea
in the West. Claudia has truly expressed the feeling of meeting and
conquering each wave as it comes! One of my own joys in my childhood
was doing this during summers at the beach, and it pleases me to think
that Frodo could have had that experience as well.

Title: Concerning Walls Author: Larner Races: Cross-Cultural:
Frodo and Faramir ID: 112
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-21 20:16:31
One of my favorite passages is the one where Frodo and Faramir part in
Ithilien with the hope that one day they might sit in the sun together
on a wall and talk. Larner uses it here to great effect.

What a lovely conversation, taking on so many different variations on
the theme of "walls", from the literal wall of the parapet where they
stood, to talking of the walls of the buildings in both Minas Tirith
and the Shire, as well as metaphorical walls, such as the ones Frodo
is building within himself.

I think that this is probably one of Larner's best short pieces.

Msg# 9507

MEFA Reviews for Wednesday, October 22, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 22, 2008 - 20:22:21 Topic ID# 9507
Title: Like Roses over a Fence Author: Ellie Times: First Age and
Prior: House of Finwe ID: 110
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-22 03:07:25
Spoilers!
Yes, healing begins at home, in the here and now. The time for grief
is over, and the time of renewal must begin, and must begin with those
whose husbands and sons left Aman in such turmoil!

I personally felt that it was best Nerdanel should be involved in the
healing of the wounds left by Feanor's rebellion, for her own
self-worth as much as for anything else. And I rejoiced at the task
she saw for herself here. Yes, it is time to give up grieving for the
dead and lost, and to get on with living!

Title: The Scribe and the Heir Author: Dawn Felagund Genres:
Drama: Featuring the Noldor ID: 256
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-22 03:11:53
Spoilers!
Ah, in this I felt as if I were standing by Maitimos's shoulder as he
overheard the discussion between his uncles. To realize that there is
far more similarity between the two older sons of Finwe than he'd
dreamed must indeed have been a shock! No wonder he is frustrated with
the rivalry he's seen between the two of them!

Excellent feelings for the place and mood, and I certainly empathise
with Maedhros! Yes, let's retreat to the scriptorium!

Title: Recognition Author: Dwimordene Times: Late Third Age:
Gondor Drabbles ID: 481
Reviewer: stefaniab 2008-10-22 16:57:29
In the few words allotted to a drabble, Dwimordene succintly covers
the issue of Eowyn's alleged coldness--all from the point of view of
Ioreth, a distinctly "warmer" person, as fanon would have it. Nicely done.

Title: Handy With A Sword Author: Tanaqui Genres: Romance: Other
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 437
Reviewer: stefaniab 2008-10-22 18:34:49
Spoilers!
A delightful bit of fluff for all Faramir/Eowyn fans. Encouraged by
Eomer and Imrahil, the two spar with practice foils with unexpected
results. Though I confess that I expected (and enjoyed) the results.
The concluding except from a poem is a hoot. "Handy with a Sword" is a
fun read to lighten any mood in these troubling times.

Title: The Queen's Gift Author: Queen Galadriel Races: Elves:
Other Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 697
Reviewer: Antane 2008-10-22 19:24:08
Spoilers!
I love the ending as I hope Arwen's prayer/hope was answered and that
Frodo did find a kindred spirit in Celebrian and she would help him
heal. That gem and more that passage West were mighty gifts.

Msg# 9508

ADMIN – Reminder: how to use story filters to find stories to revi Posted by Tanaqui October 23, 2008 - 13:51:02 Topic ID# 9508
Hey guys,

Here is your weekly admin post. This week, I'm going to repost some of
an announcement Marta made back in May about how to find stories to read
and review. I'm sure lots of you have tackled the "low hanging fruit" 
stories you nominated, stories you've already read and liked, and
stories by authors whose previous work you've liked. So in the last few
weeks, you may be looking for more stories among the 660 that we have
nominated that will appeal to you. Here are some ways to help you find them.

************************

1. FILTERS

Maybe you want to find stories about your favorite character, or set
around a certain event, etc. This is where the filters come in.

The filters are a set of drop-down menus that allow you to find certain
types of stories.

To find the filters, log in to the MEFA2008 website and click the
"Stories" link at the top of the page. Now click the "Show Filter" link,
and you'll see a series of dropdown lists that you can use. For a
rundown of what the various filters do, see

www.mefawards.net/MEFA2008/index.php?page=FAQvoting#vot_15

But basically, if there is a question for it on the nomination form, you
can probably use the filters to bring up all the stories whose authors
selected that nomination.

The filters also provide an easy way to find the stories that you've
already reviewed. Select the appropriate status off the "Review Status"
filter, and this will bring up all the stories where you've entered that
type of review. So if you know you entered a draft review that you'd
like to edit, but can't remember the exact title of the story, use this
filter to display all of the stories for which you've entered draft reviews.

The "Genre, Race, Time Choice" is another very powerful filter. When an
author is selecting what category they want their story in, they select
three category choices. Obviously it can only compete in one. But maybe
you want to find all the stories that involve hobbits, or are Alternate
Universe stories, even if the story didn't end up in that category. The
GRT filter is a good way to find all the pieces that selected a certain
main category as one of their choices. You won't find *all* the stories
involving hobbits this way (some authors might have selected two genres
and one time category, and skipped over races entirely, for example).
But you will find most of them.

One last thing about filters: you are allowed to select from more than
one filter at a time - for instance, you could select "Pippin" from the
characters and "Gondor" from the settings. But be careful about doing
this. If you select more than one filter at a time, it will only display
pieces that selected *both* those options. Also, the filters are
"sticky," meaning that when you reload the page it remembers what
filters you selected. So you always want to make sure you clear out your
previous filter choices before selecting new ones. You can do this by
clicking the "Clear All Filters" button at the bottom of the list of
filters.

************************

2. QUICK-LINKS

Quick links are new this year. You can see them below the filters but
above the first story listing. There are clickable links to "Places,"
"Characters," "Events," "Subgenre", "Story Length," or "Source." Click
on one, and it will show you a list of all the options of that type.

For instance, click "Characters." This will show you a list of all the
characters that authors could choose from when filling out their story
form. There's also a number to show how many stories have selected that
option. Click on the character name, and it will bring up all the
stories featuring that character, just like you'd see on the main story
list. You can even enter reviews from this page and add stories to your
skip or wish list.

If you change your mind and decide you'd like to look at a different
character, you can hide these stories by clicking on the character name
again, then clicking on the new character name you'd like to display.
(You can display more than one character at a time if you like, but some
people prefer to only display one character's story at a time.)

The other quick-links work the same way. If you'd prefer to look at,
say, all the stories with a certain setting, or of a certain length,
then click the "Stories" link at the top of the page and then choose the
quick-link you'd like.

************************

3. RANDOMLY-SELECTED STORY

Another new feature this year is the randomly-selected story. Every time
you visit the Home Page, a new story will be displayed, selected
randomly from the stories you haven't reviewed yet. So if you're not
sure what exactly you'd like to read, this might be a good place to
start. See if that randomly-selected story sparks your interest.

************************

4. JUMP RIGHT IN

Also, don't forget that you don't *have* to use any of these tools. If
you prefer, you can just look at the full list of nominated stories, and
start reading every story that interests you from the top of the list.
The stories are displayed in a different order to each member, so you
won't be unfairly benefiting some authors more than others.

************************

5. KEYWORD SEARCHING

Finally, if you're still working through stories you already know and
love, you can use. the search bar to find them. Once the "List of
Nominations" page loads, just enter the word you want to search on into
the search bar and click search. This will return any stories with those
words in the title, author's name, or summary

Happy reviewing!

Tanaqui
(MEFA Tech Support)

Msg# 9509

MEFA Reviews for Thursday, October 23, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 23, 2008 - 19:56:03 Topic ID# 9509
Title: Don't Explain Author: gwidhiel Races: Elves: Incomplete
ID: 289
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-23 02:18:00
I gladly helped a bit with very early drafts of this story, but since
then, Gwidhiel has done so much on her own that I don't really feel as
if I could rightfully claim some credit to the story as it stands now!

Gwidhiel handles her cast of characters thoughtfully and with surety.
There are some problems with dialogue which at times seems stilted and
over-informative, but overall, it is used effectively to drive the
story forward.

The biggest strength is her focus on the so often marginalised female
characters. It was fascinating to see pivotal events in the life of
the Finwans' life through Findis' and Indis' eyes - a quite different
take than usual, and one I found cogent and persuasive (all the more
remarkable because I know Gwidhiel started out with a rather
unfavourable view of Indis and through her writing of this story
wanted to explore Indis' possible motives).

It also brought to attention what enormous, lasting impact history had
on the closest family bonds, bringing it down to a very personal level.

Title: In absentia Author: Robinka Races: Elves: House of Finwe
ID: 84
Reviewer: Moreth 2008-10-23 12:33:24
Binka has written a powerful scene exploring what happened after
Maedhros was rescued. The contrasts in this story were the first thing
that caught my attention when I read it: The difference between the
stuffy, enclosed room and the open freedom outside; The static figure
of Maedhros and the frustrated pacing of Fingon.

I thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to re-read this (and I still like
the bat!).

Title: Cat's Paws Author: pandemonium_213 Races: Villains ID: 58
Reviewer: Moreth 2008-10-23 14:22:04
This classic piece of Pandemonium's is a short fic from the same
setting as her longer work ['The Apprentice']. In it we see
Celebrimbor and Annatar at their finest. Celebrimbor as the
intellectually hungry smith, frustrated by the transience of
Middle-earth, and Annatar offering the knowledge Celebrimbor craves.

We see Annatar demonstrate, in a shocking and surprising manner, the
skills he can teach to the Elves. And yet he is not simply a
manipulative 'baddie' - he is also a charismatic and highly
intelligent mentor to whom Celebrimbor is naturally drawn: [' ...I had
seen him squatted down on his heels... his voice and eyes as filled
with wonder as the little girl or boy who listened to him and asked
him questions.']

The story contains beautiful visual detail (the statue, the house, the
evening meal) and yet it is filled with a profound sense of - 'horror'
is too strong a word - 'unease' would be better. Something about this
gift of knowledge is not quite right...

It makes an excellent (if heart-wrenching) pair with ['Broken Star']
by the same author.


Title: The Captain's Mare Author: The Lauderdale Races: Villains
ID: 575
Reviewer: Moreth 2008-10-23 15:38:05
Can one write a story that is humorous, poignant and still rather
dark? About orcs? Apparently so, since this author has!

The Lauderdale never misses a beat with the voice of her orcish
protagonist - and the language he uses is simply brilliant
characterisation. And yet, behind the rather crude vocabulary and
(*cough*) eyebrow-raising recreational practises, there is a sense of
the destruction of a whole way of life in order to serve Saruman's
war-machine: ['Before that it was always a partnership: Orc and Warg
working together...But in the War, all of that was f***** up... They
hate us now.']

Nevertheless, as sympathetic as one finds the character, he remains an
orc. And the last paragraph reflects this.

I'm glad to find this piece - excellent writing!


Title: The Road Trip Author: Garnet Took Times: Modern Times ID: 410
Reviewer: Antane 2008-10-23 17:56:13
Spoilers!
I love the idea of Pippin having to be in a car seat! What a hoot! :)
I would so love to have these four visit me too. Did you not say "Are
we there yet?" or did I just miss that? That whine has to be in there
somewhere! Love the idea of classical music, though listening to Rush
would not be at all either, if I couldn't listen to the soundtracks or
the BBC Radio adaptation.

Title: Shadow King Author: Claudia Genres: Alternate Universe:
Angst/Tragedy ID: 227
Reviewer: Antane 2008-10-23 18:04:02
Spoilers!
A very dark AU and most definitely one I am glad didn't come about.
For Frodo never would get his precious back though I don't doubt he
would continue to try and lose more and more of himself and that
twisted king would continue to heal what was left extending the
torment. No comfort indeed for any of them.

Title: A Taste of Home Author: Pearl Took Races: Hobbits:
Friendship ID: 138
Reviewer: Antane 2008-10-23 18:14:45
What a sweet surprise for his Pippin does Merry give! *hugs him* Love
the ending.

Title: Rivendell International Airport Author: Primsong Genres:
Humor: Elven Lands ID: 345
Reviewer: agape4gondor 2008-10-23 19:04:13
I still don't know how I missed the fact that there were airports in
Middle-earth. This is obviously a well-run airport with very good
security.

The Fellowship did themselves proud, especially (Rolling on the Floor
Laughing) Sir Rimorob. You have taken this genre to new heights. Every
detail was spot-on in regards to going through security at a 'modern
day' airport - yet - I knew I was still in Middle-earth. I do so hope
they made it to Gondor.

You have a way, in all of your tales, of keeping true to Tolkien's
characters. Never have I read something of yours that makes me wonder
at a discrepancy. I really feel I'm still reading something the master
himself would have written. Perhaps it's the 'twisted' lines - you
know the ones - you know you've read them before, but, still
delightful - taking on new and hilarious meanings.

This was hilarious upon my first reading, and also great on the
second! This is one of those ones that one chapter is definitely good,
but to have TWELVE - Awesome!

Great tale. I hope many others have the opportunity to enjoy this
taste of a not-so-unlikely scene!

Title: Feet That Wander Author: Linaewen Races: Cross-Cultural
ID: 576
Reviewer: agape4gondor 2008-10-23 19:29:15
Spoilers!
I absolutely adore this tale. The beginning and the end were perfect -
gave the tale a sense of a border, as a fine portrait has.

Tom's care of his land and those who trod it is perfect. I could just
see the jolly man walking along, singing. I did, however, miss a
moment with Goldberry. Perhaps the next chapter. *giggles*

Poor Boromir - one could feel the weight of his predicament upon his
shoulders. To have lost his horse and his way... not what the Man from
Gondor would have liked. You portray his feelings of frustration very
well. The other part I liked was the 'hint' of darkness that was
quickly working its way towards him. To be so close to the
Barrow-Downs and not be assaulted was great. Saved - just in the nick
of time and by a most unlikely creature. I loved the immediate sense
of relief from our friend. The sword action was good too. *giggles*

I'm glad Tom set our dear Captain-General on the straight path and
that he stayed with him awhile. So this explains some of the one
hundred and ten days of his travels. Laughs out loud.

Now - will we see what else took him so bloody long to find his way to
Rivendell?

Great tale and unexpected in its characters and setting. I love it
when I find something 'new' and unexpected.

Title: Long Memories Author: Bodkin Times: Second and Early Third
Age ID: 310
Reviewer: agape4gondor 2008-10-23 19:34:59
Spoilers!
I had six 'oh my's and one oh dear with a bunch of happy and sad
smiles. Here goes!

The level of disdain was horrid and brilliant at the same time. First
'oh my' came at Taryatur's dogs and fleas comment. And the 'prattle'
quote was seering along with the reference to the Kin-slaying. And
when I found out it was Oropher - yikes! I am glad Erior was about - I
loved the whole section about Oropher's wife and his need for her -
along with his need to 'pound every Noldor' into mud. Interesting and
very sad. This whole section was excellent!

I loved the 'suffocating heap of differences' - the phrase not the
actions and words of the Elves. They do not present themselves well,
do they?

I ROTFL when I read about Maltheniel's thinking regarding the Noldo.
(general wonderfulness *giggles*)

Another 'oh my' with the 'unclean' comment! So telling with one
word... And Celebrimbor's angst at the thoughts of his family. How
very sad indeed. Another 'sad face' with the 'I am sorry' line. The
whole thought of all those families sundered and the pain and grief,
anger and frustration. Almost too much to bear, for this mortal woman
reading!

The ending was great with Legolas, though my heart broke at the
thought of the final passing of Gimli... I loved the last paragraph!

Bless you - this was great!

Title: Dirt and Gold Author: Empy Times: Mid Third Age ID: 590
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-23 21:38:20
Spoilers!
Grima's self-vilifying is extremely compelling portrayed here.

Title: The Conscience of the King Author: Raksha the Demon Genres:
Humor ID: 649
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-23 21:41:14
Spoilers!
This is an interesting argument Eomer has with himself, though a bit
prudish. It was most convincing when it was thought of his little
sister behaving sexually that rankled, not so much Faramir's actions.

Title: Boromir and Teddy Author: Ithil-valon Genres: Drama: Final
Partings ID: 113
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-23 21:43:39
Spoilers!
I really enjoyed the similarities drawn between the two living
brothers, and the two deceased, and from living to dead. it was nicely
done.

Title: Candles Author: Gentle Hobbit Races: Hobbits: Post-Ring War
ID: 460
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-23 21:45:41
The images here are well rendered.

Title: The Dancing Lesson Author: Lindelea Races: Hobbits:
Friendship ID: 664
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-23 21:49:35
Spoilers!
This story started out slowly for me, charmingly enough, but ended up
unexpectedly rich. The last paragraphs were studded so nicely with
many lovely details of Frodo and Bilbo's relationship in their easy
conversation, Bilbo's absent-mindedness, and Frodo's preferring to
stay home and get hermit lessons to name only a few.

Msg# 9510

MEFA Reviews for Friday, October 24, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 24, 2008 - 21:01:34 Topic ID# 9510
Title: Frodos Dremes Author: Gentle Hobbit Genres: Drama:
Featuring Frodo or Sam ID: 235
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-24 02:14:06
It's canon that Frodo had prescient dreams, and in TAoTB, we have the
poem ["The Sea-Bell"] which is supposed to also be one of his dreams.
In this series of vignettes, GentleHobbit gives us some of Frodo's
dreams--they are very dreamlike in that disjointed feeling of reality
that dreams give. Most of them are quite dark and disturbing, very
likely given Frodo's state of mind after the Quest. But the last one,
with its message of hope is my favorite.

Beautiful writing, evocative and thoughtful.

Title: Lily Took Author: Cathleen Races: Hobbits: Childhood ID: 147
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-24 02:29:07
Another entry in Cathleen's chronicles of the adventures of Pippin and
his knitted piggy, Tulip. In this sweet bit of fluff, Pippin makes a
very interesting discovery. As always, little Pippin is adorable and
lively, and Tulip is her usual sardonic self.

Title: The Lowest Circle Author: Tanaqui Races: Elves: Drabbles
ID: 449
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-24 02:32:54
How *did* Morgoth corrupt Elves to create the Orcs? Here's one very
sad, chilling and likely possibility.

Title: In the Van Author: Branwyn (Lady Branwyn) Genres: Humor
ID: 72
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-24 02:36:10
This extended pun made me giggle excessively. It's quite funny; dare I
say, that JRRT with his love for word play might even have gotten a
smile from it.

Title: Put Aside Your Doubt Author: sophinisba solis Races:
Cross-Cultural: Frodo and Faramir ID: 187
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-24 02:46:09
Spoilers!
A gentle exploration of Frodo's doubts towards Faramir, reinforced by
his memories of Boromir, and the evolution in their brief relationship
at Henneth Annun. I like the sense here, delicately conveyed, of
Faramir being a living shield to Frodo.

Title: Courage Author: rhyselle Times: First Age and Prior: House
of Finwe ID: 69
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-24 03:03:20
Spoilers!
A beautifully textured gapfiller exploring Finrod's decision to
support Beren's quest. Finrod is one of the most appealing, courageous
and tragic figures in the Silmarillion; a noble king who takes the
path of honor, knowing it could well lead to his own death, which it
(sob!) does.

Rhyselle writes the story in Tolkienesque language; it felt like I was
reading part of the Silmarillion that I had not seen before.

Title: Fulfilling Oaths Author: Nieriel Raina Times: Multi-Age
ID: 332
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-24 03:16:39
Spoilers!
A stellar account at the sacrifice of Finrod and its impact on Beren
and his heirs, from the First Age into the Fourth. I love the way
Nieriel Raina starts and finishes the story in Finrod's voice; and the
journey of Finrod's ring is wonderfully concluded. A lovely look at
the interwoven legends of the brave Elven-king and the heirs of Barahir.

Title: Loss Author: SurgicalSteel Genres: Drama: Hurt/Comfort
ID: 196
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-24 03:36:43
Spoilers!
An in-depth look at the birth and subsequent death of the third child,
born too soon, of Halbarad and Serinde in Surgical Steel's epic tale
of Serinde, surgeon of Minas Tirith and the north. Surgical Steel
conveys the medical details and the heart-wrenching emotion very well,
with excellent use of Halbarad's sensible but pain-filled narration.
The perils of life in the north, with its dearth of qualified medical
practitioners in the towns of Men, come brilliantly to life, as one of
the few expert practitioners nearly dies in childbirth assisted by an
inexpert midwife.

Title: Love at First Sight Author: Gwynnyd Races: Elves: Other
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 432
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-24 05:35:45
Spoilers!
I particularly admire how Gwynnyd managed to convey so many different
moods in this ficlet without them clashing or cancelling each other
out. There is the Mriel's exhaustion and almost disinterest after
birthing her child. There is the proud papa who doesn't quite know
what to do. There is the baby reacting to each new sensation and sight
- and is particularly fascinated by the light of the two Trees. And
overlaying it all is the foreshadowing of things to come, of fthe
fault lines, already showing themselves in these family dynamics.

Title: Spiced Wine On A Snowy Day Author: Nieriel Raina Races:
Elves: Other Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 558
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-24 05:36:17
The description conveyed the wonder and the joy of snow perfectly - I
felt elated, the way I alway feel when I watch the first snow fall.

The feeling of comfort, of warmth and companionship in winter, is
conveyed very well. It also really capture that special "stillness"
that comes over a landscape in white.

Not a story per se, but a wonderful still life of a comradely scene
with the added benefit that it actually captured more than the visual
sense. Hm, and I admit the idea of mulled wine just now makes me quite
looking forward to it when soon it gets really cold here.

Title: Shadows Author: Bodkin Races: Elves: Family ID: 698
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-24 06:48:41
Spoilers!
A haunting story wherein Legolas faces the destruction of the place
where his mother died, and is finally able to release her unhoused
soul from Middle-earth. The story within the story, of her untimely
death, is superbly written, and the whole story resonates with the
bittersweetness of death and release and the peculiar sorrow of
Legolas' fate.

Title: Dol Amroth Yule Author: Isabeau of Greenlea Genres:
Adventure ID: 295
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-24 07:32:14
Spoilers!
Hethlin has several strikes against her in her training to become a
Swan Knight--she is female, a northerner, elf-trained, and a stranger,
and certainly Master Andrahar has made it plain he intends to make
things miserable for her. But she is also observant, and that ability
to observe and respond quickly stands all with the castle of Dol
Amroth well during the feast for Yule.

Well written, and characters are drawn with detail and their
personalities are fascinating.

Title: Many Branches Author: Baranduin Races: Cross-Cultural:
Frodo and Faramir ID: 420
Reviewer: Antane 2008-10-24 18:10:14
A lovely, gentle, loving tale of two friends reunited beyond all hope.
I do hope they did actually have such a meeting or something like it.
I think Faramir is a hobbit in a man's skin because he has such a
gentle heart and no wonder he and Frodo would get along so well, both
being scholars also, and be able to tease each other. How nice to see
Frodo not suffering but just enjoying the company and the day. I love
the thought that they would be united in heart by the water. Bravo!

Title: Slings and Arrows Author: Ancalime8301 Genres: Drama:
Hurt/Comfort ID: 185
Reviewer: Antane 2008-10-24 18:18:39
[Mind yourself, and listen to Sam when he thinks you need to stop and
rest.] So Faramir has already figured out these two! And how stubborn
Frodo can be and that Sam has his hand and his heart wrapped around
his beloved treasure.

Title: GOBLINS: The Herald's Summons Author: Fiondil Times: First
Age and Prior ID: 53
Reviewer: stefaniab 2008-10-24 18:58:19
Spoilers!
In this story, Fiondil encapsulates a pivotal moment in First Age
history. As the War of Wrath begins, Manw's herald Enw assembles
the Noldor High King Arafinw' (aka Finarfin), his wilflul daughter,
and her "lowly" Sindarin husband for a chat. Poor Arafinw', already
troubled by having personally killed Atani in battle, must then hear
the Valars' doom of his daughter Artanis.

Title: The Houseless Author: Jael Genres: Horror ID: 178
Reviewer: Nieriel Raina 2008-10-25 00:53:53
An engaging, and yet eerily beautiful tale. Jael takes us along with
Legolas on a hunting trip where he experiences a rather strange
adventure. Vivid imagery captivates the reader, taking them inside the
story. Jael captures Legolas's character in a unique, yet familiar
way. Her original characters shine as being genuine and realistic. The
settings are well described and the plot of the story moves easily and
yet not too quickly. And even Legolas's horse has a personality worth
remembering.

A wonderful tale for Halloween or any time of the year. This is one I
will definitely read again and again. Well done, Jael!

Title: Sing All Ye People! Author: Raksha the Demon Times: Late
Third Age: Gondor ID: 249
Reviewer: Nieriel Raina 2008-10-25 00:57:38
Beautiful and moving! A wonderful ficlet of Faramir's thoughts in such
a joyous moment.

Title: The Weaving Cow Author: cactuskim Genres: Humor ID: 675
Reviewer: Nieriel Raina 2008-10-25 00:58:57
Delightfully humorous, wickedly amusing. This is a must read, provided
one doesn't have food or drink in their hand.

Title: The Right to Bear Arms Author: Pearl Took Genres: Humor:
Elven Lands ID: 653
Reviewer: Nieriel Raina 2008-10-25 01:29:41
Pearl Took has a wonderful talent for writing Hobbits. Four Hobbits in
particular. Completely in character, full of wit and seriousness.
Pearl has written an entertaining tale of Boromir and the Hobbits in
Rivendell that could have come from the books. Well done!

Title: Autumn Author: Linda Hoyland Races: Men: Gondor Drabbles
ID: 489
Reviewer: Nieriel Raina 2008-10-25 01:32:23
Lovely and well written.

Title: Some Confusion in Accounts Author: viv Genres: Humor: Other
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 276
Reviewer: Nieriel Raina 2008-10-25 01:35:01
Full of wit and good humor. A true knee slapper of a tale. Hilarious.

Title: Wayward Sons Author: Jael Races: Elves ID: 408
Reviewer: Nieriel Raina 2008-10-25 01:40:23
Once again Jael brings us a well written tale of the Elvenking, full
of vivid imagery, deep emotion, a moving plot and wonderful
characterization. Thranduil at his lowest is heart wrenching, and yet,
as always in Jael's works, there is hope.

Title: Bibliophile Author: Imhiriel Genres: Romance: Drabbles
ID: 370
Reviewer: Oshun 2008-10-25 01:42:34
This is a lovely drabble about owyn actually, but shedding some light
on both the Third Age and the First Age Finduilas. I agree with
Finduilas of Gondor and Dol Amroth, that I would have been less than
wildly enthusiastic about constantly being presented with versions of
the grim and tragic story of Finduilas of Nargothrond. I got a chuckle
because you hit a nerve for me. I have been forced, in the past year
in my own research projects more times than I would have liked, to
look at the fates of those intertwined with the doom of Hrin's children.

Title: With Many "Fond" Acknowledgments Author: Thundera Tiger
Genres: Humor ID: 472
Reviewer: Nieriel Raina 2008-10-25 01:43:19
When Thundera writes humor, you can be sure you'll be chuckling and
snorting as you read. This story is no exception. Written from Sam's
point of view, we get a unique, and delightfully humorous look, at
some of our favorite characters. I truly do pity Sam and his poor
headache after enduring such conversations.

Well done, Thundera!

Msg# 9511

MEFA Reviews for Saturday, October 25, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 25, 2008 - 19:40:20 Topic ID# 9511
Title: One Last Wish Author: Dawn Felagund Times: First Age and
Prior: House of Finwe ID: 323
Reviewer: Nieriel Raina 2008-10-25 02:10:03
It is a rare thing for a story to move me to such deep emotion, let
alone tears. A story that has me pausing to read again that I just
read and then stop and gape at the pain and truth in the words. And
yet full of such dark beauty. Dawn Felagund in this story has managed
to capture Nerdanel in such a way, I do believe this could be canon.
Nerdanel's hope, pain, loss and bitterness ring as truth, and so many
of her reflections hold true for so many women in this world.

Thought provoking, vivid and moving, this should be a must read for
all Silmarillion fans, and especially fans of Feanor. Dawn, this story
touched me beyond words. As I sit here and weep for Nerdanel, I find I
also weep for myself and friends who have been so hurt by the love of
a man. It is as if you have tapped into the collective consciousness
of women and spoken dark truths that reside in many of us all.

Bitter, dark, but beautifully written.

Title: Murder The Dawn Author: crowdaughter Genres: Alternate
Universe: Incomplete ID: 383
Reviewer: Nieriel Raina 2008-10-25 02:11:48
A dark, bitter and emotionally gripping tale. An AU story of
magnificent and chilling proportions. Aislynn writes with vivid detail
and moving description of the final revenge for a family long tortured
and wronged.

Aislynn, it was nice to see Elrond get what was coming to him. Well done!

Title: Dark Dreams Author: SlightlyTookish Races: Hobbits:
Hurt/Comfort ID: 550
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-25 02:33:21
Spoilers!
A small but sweet ficlet, featuring Merry in need of some comfort from
Pippin. I love Slightlytookish's handle on Merry's and Pippin's
relationship, showing that Pippin takes care of Merry as well as the
other way around. I love Pippin's solicitousness in this. Their
conversation is hobbity--they acknowledge the seriousness of Merry's
memories, and then move on, lightly, with tea and conversation.

Title: Sing All Ye People! Author: Raksha the Demon Times: Late
Third Age: Gondor ID: 249
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-25 02:39:07
The great Eagle, singing out the marvelous news of Sauron's fall to
all of Minas Tirith is one of my very favorite songs in LotR. It
sounds like a hymn--and in this lovely first person vignette, Faramir
*hears* it like a hymn, full of hope and joy and majesty and even
divinity--as he with his Numenorean sensibilities understands it.
Raksha conveys the utter glory of the moment beautifully!

Title: Pirates Ye Be Warned Author: Imhiriel Races: Men: Gondor
Drabbles ID: 353
Reviewer: Dreamflower 2008-10-25 02:43:14
An altogether realistic scenario. Pirates are pirates, after all, and
at least in JRRT's world they are not there to be admired or
emulated--they are to be punished. And Imrahil does his princely duty
well.

Title: Brotherhood Author: Violin Ghost Races: Men: Steward's
Family ID: 261
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-25 03:15:41
Spoilers!
I loved the way Boromir was remembered in song and the hopeful ending
for Faramir and what appears to be a growing bond with Eomer.

Title: Too Many Rangers Author: Larner Races: Hobbits ID: 116
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-25 03:22:58
Spoilers!
I just loved this and laughed out loud. Thank Goodness Tolkien decided
on our beloved Strider and Frodo! Trotter and Bingo don't have the
same ring somehow!
One of the funniest stories I have read in a long while and a
brilliant and clever idea to use Tolkien's discarded drafts to create
this delightful story.

Title: The Lost Restored Author: Larner Times: Late Third Age:
Gondor ID: 59
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-25 03:28:56
Spoilers!
It was fascinating to see events from Gollums viewpoint and moving
too.I liked it as well you gave a plausible explanation of the rescue
and how Aragorn was waiting.This was a very moving story and I was so
glad that Gollum was granted redemption,which in turn helped Frodo
find peace.

Title: I Stand No Longer Alone Author: Larner Races: Men: Minas
Tirith ID: 62
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-25 03:31:27
Spoilers!
I loved this unique story.What a lovely idea that the throne itself
should be concious of Aragorn's coming!
It is fascinating to speculate what if?After so many years the throne
must have been delighted to find such a worthy King to sit upon it!

Title: The Ritual Disturbed Author: Larner Genres: Horror ID: 68
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-25 03:37:20
Spoilers!
A Chilling tale !The Barrorwights are amongst Tolkien's scariest
creations! Frodo's courage is amazing when he confronts them. I always
thought Frodo kept his own clothes though?I must check my book
again.This is perfect reading for Halloween and guaranteed to chill
the blood!

Title: For the Want of ... Author: Larner Times: Late Third Age:
Gondor ID: 681
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-25 03:41:11
Spoilers!
I greatly enjoyed this .I just started thinking maybe Pippin's
presence helped make Sauron suspect the army must have the Ring and
distract from Frodo's mission? I wonder if that was why Aragorn took
him to the Black Gate rather than simply to represent the free
peoples? Of course, Pippin would have been asked were that so.

I especially loved Aragorn's letter and Pippin and Faramir's conversation.

Title: With Hope and Without Hope Author: docmon Genres:
Adventure: Incomplete ID: 466
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-25 03:45:30
Spoilers!
I'm not usually very partial to AUs but this had me gripped as it was
so skilfully written and gave every character a chance to shine.I
especially admired the courage of Pippin and felt for Aragorn's pain.
Never have I been so glad to see Gandalf,not even in the original! A
very well written story.

Title: Apart Author: Nieriel Raina Genres: Drama: Gondor
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 551
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-25 03:49:32
Spoilers!
A bitter sweet moment for Legolas and Gimli when an argument briefly
threatens their friendship. I'm not a big fan of these two, but I
enjoyed this very much.

Title: Pulling the Wool Author: Elen Kortirion Races: Men: General
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 95
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-25 03:53:55
Spoilers!
I loved these poignant drabbles and their clever play on words. Poor
Boromir,he was the most deluded yet sure of himself member of the
Fellowship.The last line was truly heart-rending.

Title: The Water's Song Author: Nieriel Raina Races: Elves: Family
ID: 707
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-25 03:58:54
A fascinating premise that Legolas was always meant to hear the call
of the sea rather than the cry of the gulls causing his sea
longing.How heart rending for his father to realise this.At least
Gimli will be able to go with him.I hope Thanduril will one day sail too.

Title: Oathbreakers Author: Thundera Tiger Times: Late Third Age
ID: 470
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-25 05:32:05
Spoilers!
A fascinating vignette focussing on the sons of Elrond as they prepare
to follow their foster-brother on a strange and quite scary path. I
really like the characterisation of the Peredhel here; Thundera Tiger
shows the duality of the twins' elven and human natures. They are
human, but also more than that, and it seems to me that they are a bit
tired of the dichotomy, as well as weary of the war and all that they
can sense as Elves. Thundera also shows the strength of the respect
and love they bear towards Aragorn, to follow him, though he is
growing more dangerous and more kingly very quickly, on such a
desperate mission.

Title: Hold To Hope Author: Nieriel Raina Times: Late Third Age
ID: 709
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-25 06:19:43
Spoilers!
An intriguing look at Thranduil's reaction to learning that Legolas
had joined the Fellowship rather than returning to Mirkwood. Nieriel
Raina effectively contrasts the Elvenking's dichotomy in reacting as a
father terrified for his child's safety and the more wiser, detached
king who must consider the good of his realm. Thranduil's faith in his
son is evoked in a touching factory, along with his great love.

Title: The Rescue of Celebrian Author: NeumeIndil Genres: Drama:
Incomplete ID: 382
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-25 08:30:01
Spoilers!
Of the many tragedies of Middle Earth, that of the wounding of
Celebrian has always felt the strongest to me, perhaps because I
always felt I knew her husband. How grievous, to find one's mother,
one's wife, with spirit so damaged, and by such a cause!

The inclusion of a female orc as leader for those who'd taken
Celebrian and then seeking her again was fascinating, and to see
Elrohir grieving for the bride he'd not yet taken is very sad.

Very interesting tale, and I look forward to seeing it finished.

Title: Refuge Author: Raksha the Demon Races: Elves: Noldor
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 423
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-25 22:52:29
Spoilers!
Captures the viewpoint of a small child very well, with the simple yet
vivid language. Despite the simplicity, the readers can glimpse the
real horror and tumult of the situation; the confusion and shock and
terror the twins are feeling. And the contrast between Maedhros'
appearance and Maglor's shows how very, very careful and calm the
latter must have advanced to gain the trust of two terrified children.

To tie the founding of Imladris with the refuge Elrond found with
Maglor for a time is a very moving, thought-provoking idea which I
find very effective and which, in my opinion, enriches both canon facts.

Title: A Problem Shared Author: Dot Races: Elves: Mirkwood Elves
ID: 169
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-25 22:52:40
Very evocative descriptions, although the particular context of the
scene remains a little vague.

I was charmed by Radagast being portrayed as an eccentric man a bit
oblivious of things around him, but in truth easing Thranduil's
tension in a very round-about way. I cheered when Thranduil saw
through his game and chose to answer in the same spirit.

One burning question remains; I wonder if this line: ["You wouldn't
want to confront an angry rabbit, let me tell you."] was supposed to
be a sly reference to the "Killer Rabbit of Caerbannog" *g*...

Title: Bearer of the Ring Author: ConnieMarie Genres: Poetry:
Hobbits ID: 396
Reviewer: MithLuin 2008-10-25 23:27:26
Nicely done! You've captured Frodo's experience (and role) well in
such a short piece. Bittersweet, with nothing missing.

Msg# 9512

MEFA Reviews for Sunday, October 26, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 26, 2008 - 19:41:15 Topic ID# 9512
Title: The Apprentice Author: pandemonium_213 Races: Villains ID: 52
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-26 01:15:10
Spoilers!
I remember having a discussion with Dwimordene a while ago about the
fact that the Tolkien fandom, by its very nature, made it very hard to
get true geekitude like you would in a fandom set in modern times. I
stand by that statement, but I also think that "The Apprentice" is as
close as we're likely to ever get. Pandemonium brings her experience
as a working scientist to this piece in a way that is perhaps too
close to this graduate student's comfort in the way that the academic
environment actually works. (I really felt for Samaril at his
defense...) Such connection is the mark of a skilled writer, and
anyone who has ever been vetted in a similar fashion will appreciate
that aspect of this piece.

In one of the chapter end-notes Pande comments on the irony of such an
AU piece being concerned about the finer points of canon, and in a way
she's right; this isn't like any other fanfic piece you'll probably
ever read. The elves swear and sing bawdy drinking songs, Latin is
used regularly, and there is a debasement about the Numenoreans and
many other characters that I don't think I had ever encountered. All
of which doesn't make it bad fanfic, but it does give the piece a
different feel, both from most fanfic and from the canon. And yet, by
the end of it, I found that Pande was saying something very
significant about the canonical events, and about the nature of
Sauron's character in particular. I am still churning that significant
comment over in my mind, so can't talk about it explicitly, but
there's something deep going on.

All in all, a very worthwhile piece - I highly recommend it for people
who enjoy having their preconceptions about Arda challenged and
expanded a bit.

Title: The Ribbon Author: Gentle Hobbit Races: Hobbits:
Hurt/Comfort ID: 336
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-26 01:15:26
I'm sure that Frodo would have had moments like this, where he was
thankful for people just acting naturally around him. I could very
easily see this happening - nice work.

Title: No Mercy Author: Tanaqui Genres: Drama: General Drabbles
ID: 443
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-26 01:16:01
Spoilers!
*shivers* This drabble is fantastically affective - I felt myself
backing away from my computer into my desk chair as I read it. I can
well imagine that the battle would have been like this, both in its
faceless evil and in the unpredictability of that gruesome day. It's a
horrifying but very well-done glimpse into the Dagor Bragollach, and I
highly recommend it to all drabble lovers.

Title: Where Shadows Lay No More Author: Cathleen Times: Fourth
Age and Beyond ID: 358
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-26 01:16:11
This is a very sweet story about Merry and Faramir looking back. The
author captured their grief quite well, and I liked that they had this
moment of assurance. It's nice to see the hobbits' close relationship
with Boromir (really fleshed out in the movies, but certainly there in
the books as well) honored in this unique way.

Title: Celevon a Mallen Author: Tanaqui Genres: Romance: Other
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 279
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-26 01:16:22
Spoilers!
this drabble series is very endearing and does a very nice job of
characterizing Celeborn and Galadriel through the small every-day
events. A lot of fics look at how historically significant events
might have affected them, but this drabble series shows how the
silver-and-gold duo would have been affected by events that were just
their own. Whether you want to see their first attraction, the rearing
of their children, or the quiet longing brought about by the their
separation at the end of Lord of the Rings, this series won't disappoint.

It's hard to choose a favorite because each drabble is endearing in
its own way; but all told I think I was most moved by "Letting Go" and
"Father of the Bride," as they show the trials of being a father and
how that would have affected Celeborn. I found myself smiling at the
tenderness that was mixed in with his strength. Many Noldor can't brag
of as much!

If you have ever wanted to play a bit more with what Celeborn's and
Galadriel's private life might have been like, this drabble series is
well worth the read.

Title: The Dooming of Small Hands Author: Thundera Tiger Times:
Late Third Age ID: 639
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-26 03:32:00
Spoilers!
I am not sure I believe that Gandalf intended Frodo to be the
Ringbearer before the conclusion of the Council of Elrond, but this
story explores the possibility that Gandalf did indeed plan on it,
even while Frodo was recovering from the wound of the Morgul-blade.
And what is especially, it explores Gandalf's motivations very
intelligently. Thundera Tiger shows Gandalf's ambivalence towards his
course of action; although it is the path most likely to result in
Sauron's end, he is not happy about the sacrifice of an innocent being
to accomplish it.

The story makes me wonder about all the other sacrifices that Gandalf
must have witnessed, perhaps some that he himself initiated out of
necessity - the reader feels the wizard's weariness and sorrow. He
does not make this sacrifice lightly or out of mere expedience; but
because he can see no other way. The saddest thing is, as we will see
later, Frodo would be in full agreement with Gandalf's reasoning.

A thoughtful gapfiller indeed.

Title: A Time to Hope Author: PipMer Races: Hobbits: Incomplete
ID: 302
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-26 05:36:17
Spoilers!
Ah, another story I hope to see added to soon.

In the aftermath if the battle at the Black Gate Merry must sit and
worry. Pippin, Sam, and Frodo are reportedly alive, but how does one
be certain they will waken again when they lie in an unnatural healing
sleep? So it falls to the non-Hobbit members of the Fellowship to keep
an eye upon the young Hobbit and reassure him.

A sweet story, a bit movie-verse, in which we see how close the
Hobbits are to one another. Merry's tendency to worry is
well-conveyed, as is the concern recovering Pippin shows for him.

Now, FINISH IT! Heh!

Title: Whatever Harm Encroached Author: Nieriel Raina Times:
Second and Early Third Age ID: 708
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-26 06:11:42
Spoilers!
An interesting vignette where the winter chill is effectively
contrasted with the warm heart and kingly determination of Thranduil.
Good portrait of Thranduil as a hunter and provider for his people
during a time of privation.

Title: All these hands Author: Elitihien Races: Elves: Noldor
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 534
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-26 09:22:39
Spoilers!
Beautiful, lyrical prose that shines especially in the evocative
descriptions and metaphors. The images presented are exquisite like
fine miniature portraits and/or still lifes, and each fits perfectly
for the requisite character Idril chooses to describe in the chapter.

I love how each character's personality is revealed by the hands Idril
focusses on; it's fascinating and touching to bear witness to just how
expressive and versatile hands and gestures are in meaning.

Each chapter offers an eloquent glimpse in important stations in
Idril's life and the persons closest to her. I like how the last
chapter not only gives a succinct summary, but also looks with hope to
the future.

I think my favourite chapter is the one about Aredhel, perhaps because
it gave me insight into a relationship I had never thought about.

Title: Noldolant Author: Dawn Felagund Races: Elves: House of
Finwe ID: 253
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-26 18:23:40
Spoilers!
What went into the crafting of Maglor's Noldolante, his magnum opus?
All of the love of family that can come from a life where seven sons
share the love of their father and mother, where the loss of the
father of their father has led to the greatest tragedy and atrocity in
all of Aman....

For all it is composed of vignettes and does not truly look at Maglor
crafting the words and music himself, yet this is indeed a powerful
examination of what led to the Noldolante and how it came to be. Love
and sibling rivalry and mutual envy and love again; finding and
losing; grief and joy; and the loss of the coherence of all of these,
the pain of fury and exile and pride brought low--all of these manage
yet to be reflected.

A beautiful series, full of intimate details and the constant surprise
Macalaure knows at being separated from the rest of his family as well
as that equally surprising joy of the constant reassurance he is
nevertheless at the heart of it.

Title: Turning Points Author: Cathleen Races: Hobbits: Incomplete
ID: 357
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-26 18:36:06
Spoilers!
Peregrin Took is growing up, thinking about the lasses, restless under
his parents' rules, dealing with growing awareness of the world around
him.... How can his parents truly understand when they could never
have gone through what he's going through now? What does he do when he
begins to experience Tookish Sight and he's not certain what it means?
How does he deal with the confusion he feels about Sam Gamgee's
younger sister and his envy of Merry's relationships with those lasses
he's been courting? What do the dreams and visions he's beginning to
experience mean to the future? What does all of this have to do with
himself, Merry, Frodo, and Sam Gamgee?

Growing wisdom and confusion lie side by side, uneasy bedfellows, it
seems. And through it all we see each step Pippin makes toward being
what he will be during the quest--the wise fool, the lightener of
burdens, the lynchpin of the conspiracy, the one who refuses to stay
behind or be quashed, not even by the weight of trolls or growing
maturity.

I cannot wait to see this story added to.

Title: The Heart of a Knight Author: Imhiriel Genres: Drama:
Incomplete ID: 335
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-26 18:56:05
Spoilers!
It's not often Imhiriel ventures from shorter works into novels, and
when she does, what wonders come of it! In this we see the beginnings
of the transformation of Beregond from Guard of the Citadel to the
Captain of the White Company, as he comes to terms with his new rank
and the place in this transformation played by those close to him.

It is wonderful to see Beregond's story being fleshed out, and as he
comes to terms with the knowledge that he, one with no training in
command, must learn such skills now; as well as his awareness that not
all greet his change in status with the joy he, his son, and his
brother know. There are those who feel this advance is too sudden, and
others who are angered the one who slew family members is receiving
preference rather than punishment.

A tale I await the rest of!

Title: The Autumn of His Discontent Author: jodancingtree Races:
Hobbits: Incomplete ID: 157
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-26 19:43:46
Spoilers!
Oh, how much I have hoped to see this story continued! How long--how
long shall it be allowed to languish?

Frodo has determined to make a jaunt through the Shire, but decides he
wishes to do so on his own. Thus he has convinced Sam to stay behind,
calling upon his loyalty to see to the integrity of the home fires and
the gardens during the master's absence, but just what disaster might
await him? And when during his journey he does manage to suffer an
accident in the rain and ends up suffering an injury, the situation
becomes serious.

As you can tell, I'm rather impatient in hoping for the next
installment, so we can see exactly how it is that others manage to
come to Frodo's aid in this moment of peril, and how his extended
family reacts to what they manage to learn of the situation
afterwards. Will she take the hint? (Poke, poke!)

As is usual with Jodancingtree, her writing is fascinating and her
descriptions are lyrical. She makes me appreciate just how much Frodo
is desiring distraction at the moment, and why he wants to do his
wandering about alone. And the cleverness of his arguments in
convincing Sam to take care of things about the Hill while he's gone
is delightful. Nicely done so far, Jo. Now, can you bring yourself to
keep going with it? We are waiting.... (Drums fingers impatiently.)

Title: Shadows Author: Bodkin Races: Elves: Family ID: 698
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-26 19:53:16
Spoilers!
A fulfilling tale to read again--a tale of a haunting of sorts
completed, a binding loosened properly. The mood is solemn and
thoughtful as Legolas visits the ashes that mark the grove where his
mother died--died protecting him when he was but a child. Always he's
come here to visit this grove with a feeling that her awareness
lingers here and delights in his visits, perhaps as proof her
sacrifice of herself was not in vain.

Does her fea remain here in the living lands? If so, he would see her
now released. And the tying of this tale into that of the quest is
delicately done indeed.

A poignantly told story, and the mood is well sustained throughout it.
We share Legolas's grief both for the loss both of trees and the
spirit they'd protected for so long, as well as his acceptance of that
loss as a timely and necessary thing, now that the world has been
changed by the victory over Darkness and the Ring is gone, as are the
last ones privy to the blasphemous secrets of corrupting the Children
of Eru into the orcs who've committed this desecration of one site
that had been sacred in the eyes of the son of Thranduil----

Definitely one of Bodkin's best works, although even her least works
exceed most of my own. A solemn joy to read.

Title: A Hobbity Wizard Author: Golden Races: Hobbits: Childhood
ID: 596
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-26 20:06:33
This is a charming romp, a bit hard to imagine on Gandalf's part, but
fun nonetheless.

Title: One Equal Temper of Heroic Hearts Author: Gwynnyd Genres:
Romance: Gondor ID: 334
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-26 20:23:59
Although told from Aragorn's perspective, the figure that most
impresses me in this story is Arwen. She is patient, kind, thoughtful
and playful with her love - a good partner!

Title: Look Not With Longing Author: Dwimordene Times: Fourth Age
and Beyond ID: 479
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-26 20:42:19
This is wonderfully thoughtful, and the author turns over each thought
and shows it to the reader even as her character does. Faramir's
thoughts are appropriately restless, and flow easily and almost
randomly from one to another. Thus the author captures both Faramir's
experience, and a common human experience, perfectly.

Title: Healing the Long Cleeve Author: TopazTook Genres: Longer
Works ID: 133
Reviewer: PipMer 2008-10-26 20:46:44
Spoilers!
This is a heartwarming tale that tells of the courtship of Pippin and
Diamond... after their marriage!

Pippin and Diamond enter into an arranged marriage, having hardly
known each other. Through the following months, glimpses of their
married life show how they slowly but surely fall in love.

We get to know some interesting and intriguing OC's, such as Pip's
brother-in-law Everard Took, a simple but lovable hobbit whose
devotion to Pippin's sister Pimpernel is sweet and heart-warming. Then
there is Diamond's nasty brother, who will stop at nothing to defend
the North-tooks' honour.

A delightful story, well told and very much enjoyed!

Title: Enticements Author: annmarwalk Genres: Drama: Featuring
Boromir or Faramir ID: 266
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-26 20:48:27
Spoilers!
So many authors examining this circumstances choose to see it as the
beginning of Boromir's downfall, but here we see it as perhaps the
last stand of his honor - he choses truth and compassion before
self-centered desires.

Title: Silenced Author: Illwynd Genres: Horror ID: 31
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-26 20:54:39
Spoilers!
This is a really fresh depiction of corruption! Well done.

Title: Tower of the Moon Author: Nath Times: Multi-Age ID: 577
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-26 20:58:46
Spoilers!
It's always fascinating and effective to consider the frailty in
things we think of as permanent. This dichotomy is well explored here.

Title: Promises Broken and Kept Author: periantari Genres: Drama:
Featuring Frodo or Sam ID: 144
Reviewer: PipMer 2008-10-26 21:10:05
Spoilers!
This is an instance of Frodo being the caregiver in a hurt/comfort
situation, instead of the other way around. It is beautifully done!

It is a sweet little story showcasing the relationship between Frodo
and young Merry, as Frodo prepares to move in with Bilbo. Merry
isn\\\'t too happy about that, thinking that this is Frodo abandoning
him. He can\\\'t quite understand why Frodo would want to move so far
away from him.

After Frodo is gone, Merry falls dangerously ill. Frodo, being the
ever vigilant older cousin, rushes back to Buckland to care for his
young \\\'brother\\\'.

A tender story, very well done!


Title: Celebrity Author: Bodkin Races: Men: Minas Tirith ID: 635
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-26 21:11:21
This is nicely told. The author's restraint matches the story and
helps lead the reader along nicely. It also enhances the ambiguity of
the last line most effectively. This is an intriguing and fresh
perspective.

Title: The Making of a Ringbearer I: Adrift Author: obelia medusa
Races: Hobbits: Childhood ID: 145
Reviewer: PipMer 2008-10-26 23:31:23
I love this medium-sized tale, that covers the time between the death
of Frodo's parents until his adoption by Bilbo. It's heart-warming,
sad, touching and poignant, all at the same time. From Frodo's
encounters with his bullying cousin Bolo, to his loving friendship
with his little cousin Merry, to the extremely close relationship
between Bilbo and Frodo from his earliest days, the tale kept me
enthralled the entire time.

A highly recommended tale!

Title: The Warmth of Morning Author: Spindle Berry Times: Late
Third Age: Gondor ID: 148
Reviewer: PipMer 2008-10-26 23:44:18
This is a beautiful telling of the waking of Pippin upon the Field of
Cormallen... waking to a waiting and anxious Merry. The author vividly
describes the feelings at war within Pippin... the agony and despair
fighting against hope and warmth. The warmth of Merry\\\'s love keeps
him anchored safely to this world, while despair threatens to pull him
under and away forever.

I absolutely love every story that I\\\'ve read by this author; highly
recommended.

Msg# 9513

MEFA Reviews for Monday, October 27, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 27, 2008 - 19:41:46 Topic ID# 9513
Title: Moon of the Sea Author: pandemonium_213 Times: Second and
Early Third Age ID: 213
Reviewer: stefaniab 2008-10-27 02:00:05
This lovely set of ficlets is quite a contrast to the other
Pandemonium stories that I have read. Each drabble and ficlet is a
succinct celebration of light, be it diamonds, gleaming waters, and
most importantly, the light of the moon, celebrated in the name of its
main character, Isilme.

Isilme, wife to Elendil, is little more than an entry on Tolkien's
genealogy charts. But in Pandemonium's rich and glittering done style,
Isilme comes glowingly to life. "Moon of the Sea" gives us enchanting
vignettes from various times in Isilme's life. I also loved the
picture Pandemonium paints of life in Numenor just before its fall,
and the intriguing portrayals of Isilme, husband Elendil, and their
young son Isildur.

Based on what I have seen in this ficlet collection, I would eagerly
read more fleshed out stories, perhaps even a novel, about Isilme and
her experiences.

Title: Untold Tales of the Mark: The Banishment of omer Author:
Katzilla Genres: Alternate Universe ID: 206
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-27 05:59:23
Spoilers!
Interesting AU version of Eomer's banishment, and return, to Edoras,
during Wormtongue's interregnum. Katzilla has the guts to take this
story into dark places, and her narration, which alternates between
grueling and moving, does not disappoint those who enjoy intricate,
angsty epics.

Title: Of Old It Was Not Darksome Author: EdorasLass Races:
Dwarves ID: 70
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-27 06:19:57
A fine Gimli vignette, exploring a sad but necessary task awaiting him
after the Ring War. Excellent texture to the story, Gimli's dignity
and honor and essential decency shine, and there's a bittersweet twist
at the end.

Title: First Name Terms Author: Marchwriter (The Lady of Light)
Races: Cross-Cultural: Elves and Men ID: 311
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-27 08:58:30
Spoilers!
The young Dunadan meets Haldir of Lorien for the first time, and it is
not precisely love at first sight. Some Elves have had bad experiences
with Men, after all. But when the young man, found tipped from the
rocks above with a poisoned orc arrow in his shoulder, cries out in
Sindarin for his father, Haldir makes the decision to help the young
Man in spite of his bad memories.

Well written action, and interesting to see how prejudice against Men
might be expressed by the Elves of Lorien.

Title: Duty, Honour, Country Author: Rhapsody Races: Elves: Other
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 81
Reviewer: Moreth 2008-10-27 14:23:42
Rhapsody uses these three drabbles to present Maglor's perspective on
his actions.

[Duty] gives us Maglor's reflections on the Oath and his departure for
Middle-earth. [Honour] shows his motivations during the battles for
Beleriand. Finally (my favourite) [Country] shows us his current
situation, coloured by memories of the past.

A poignant and moving depiction of Maglor's thoughts.

Title: Philosophia to Philomythus and Misomythus Author:
pandemonium_213 Genres: Poetry ID: 50
Reviewer: Moreth 2008-10-27 15:40:36
Since the moment I first read this poem, it has lodged in my brain!
Much as I like the imagery in Tolkien's 'Mythopoeia', I cannot around
the feeling that he portrays science as a joyless and miserable
exercise in futility. Nothing could be further from the truth, as
Pandemonium so eloquently argues here.

The reading of any poem is, of course, highly personal but, for me at
least, these verses describe very well the sense of wonder and beauty
that comes from a scientific study of the world - and the elation of
the moment when some tricky question (whatever one's discipline) is
resolved, and it proves to be an elegant and beautiful solution.

That said, the value of myth and story endures and inspires. So let us
have both! (Although Pandemonium says it very much more poetically...)

This poem has been added to my mental horde of gems that I enjoy
revisiting. Thanking a poet for writing is probably like thanking a
fish for swimming, nevertheless, a big thank you to Pandemonium for
sharing this!

Title: A Darkness Lies behind Us Author: Bodkin Races: Elves:
Incomplete ID: 190
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-27 17:41:15
Wonderfully nuanced characterisations, elegant prose, and fine,
evocative descriptions. A thoughtful exploration of dealing with
exiled and reborn Elves vs. those who stayed, the passage of time, in
a very nuanced and sensitive way.

It shows a credible system of easing the Elves from their release from
the Halls of Mandos to a re-entry into society might have begun and
developed in its early stages, complete with trial-and-error hick-ups.
I particularly liked the idea that not only the Elves, but also the
Valar themselves had to find out the hard way what worked and what didn't.

To use Finrod as a "testing case" for a system of how to deal with
Reborn Elves strikes me as a very neat idea; so very fitting for his
exploring, curious and tolerant mind. It was fascinating to read about
how he slowly and sometimes painfully integrated his memories and his
identity into his "new" self.

Apart from the characterisation of Finrod and Finarfin, I particularly
love this take on Amari, the balance between the calm, a bit shy
woman with great will, perseverance and steadfastness, and a deep well
of love and joy inside her. And also the portrayal of the deep
connection between her and Finrod throughout all that happened.

Title: A Cat in King Elessar's Court Author: agape4gondor Races:
Cross-Cultural: Friendship ID: 66
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-27 20:02:18
Spoilers!
This story constantly amazes me in the way it balances the feline
point-of-view with the great events it is describing. As a cat lover,
I can testify that the point of view is definitely that of a cat, and
as such a point-of-view requires the cat's concerns are not those of
humans; perhaps because of that, this human empathized with the
characters portrayed in a new way and found much she had missed about
the afore-mentioned great events. Brava, Agape!

Title: The Dancing Lesson Author: Lindelea Races: Hobbits:
Friendship ID: 664
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-27 20:02:42
Spoilers!
This is a delightful glimpse into the life of Bilbo and Frodo before
Bilbo left the Shire. Bilbo is so delightfully "Bilboish," full of
humor with just the right mix of "oddness" to make him feel like the
Bilbo of _The Hobbit_, and Frodo is every inch the sulky teenager.
This is a moment that every teenager (or parent of the same) should be
able to relate to, and Lindelea does a really nice job breathing life
into it.

Title: Wild Swan Author: Tanaqui Genres: Drama: Gondor
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 328
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-27 20:02:50
Tanaqui's drabbles are usually among my favorite in the fandom, and
never moreso than when she sets her sites to Gondor. And "Wild Swans"
certainly doesn't disappoint on that mark. This drabble series covers
more years and more varied situations than I usually see in a series,
yet it maintains its coherency, giving a glimpse of how Imrahil's
character changed over the years, starting with the love-sick puppy
that followed Thorongil around until at last we see a grandfather in a
time of peace. In a way it is a microcosm of Gondor herself in the
generation or two before the Ring War. And as such it does a great job
of capturing the variety of experiences of those folk.

I particularly liked the way in the last drabble that Tanaqui captured
a faithful Numenorean's tie to the White Tree, and the mirroring
experiences of Imrahil related to that icon. I won't say more because
I don't want to spoil, but it was simply beautiful and really got at
the heart of the matter.

Title: There shall be Mirth at our Meeting Author: Imhiriel
Genres: Humor: Drabbles ID: 377
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-27 20:03:00
Hee! I rather like the idea that our favorite heroes would leave a
string of sighing maidens (and not-so-maidenly ladies) across
Middle-earth. I can see it, and you do a good job developing the OC in
so few words.

Title: Shall We Dance? Author: Isabeau of Greenlea Races: Men:
Steward's Family ID: 93
Reviewer: Marta 2008-10-27 20:03:13
Spoilers!
I think that of all of all of Isabeau's pre-Ring War Stories that I've
read, "Shall We Dance" is probably my favorite. Isabeau delivers some
very interesting characterizations of Imrahil and Denethor especially
but also of their various children. I am really a stickler when it
comes to Denethor's characterization, and while I didn't agree with
everything here (I never do), I did find his change of heart Isabeau
leads us through --and most especially the REASONS for said change of
heart-- to be much more consistent (both story-internally and with the
larger canon/my personal fanons) than is usually the case.

More than the characterization issues, I think I most enjoy how this
story manages to balance the light-hearted with the more bittersweet.
It seems like too often Gondor stories before th Ring are either pure
fluff or very angsty; but here Isabeau gives us a nice mix of sad
remembrances of both Finduilas and Imrahil's wife (an OC); as well as
the more frivolous concerns that turn out to be not so frivolous as
they may at first seem. The descriptions were lively as well; a very
enjoyable tale.

Title: Last Stroke Author: Elena Tiriel Genres: Alternate
Universe: Drabbles ID: 465
Reviewer: dkpalaska 2008-10-27 23:20:36
Spoilers!
Nearly the entirety of this drabble is a masterful work of
misdirection, and I do mean masterful. It takes some thought and
planning to craft a scene-setting as evocative and tangible as this
one is, that inserts me so firmly into what seems to be a very
specific time and place through perfectly-chosen resonances with the
original work - and then spins me completely out of all of that into a
wholly different scenario in the space of one short and final sentence.

The tone, descriptive writing and structure are all extremely well
done. Even in the space of so few words, there is a discernible
tension that builds from start to finish. The language is
Tolkienesque, flows very naturally and complements the atmosphere of
the piece.

And the after-effects: Elena Tiriel leaves me thinking on about the
state of the rest of Middle-earth, if this is what is happening in
this particular corner of it. It's a dismal place indeed...

I think that my favorite impression, however, is how well-drawn the
similarities are between where I thought I was and where the drabble
actually takes place. The same nobility and fierceness of character,
the determination to stand firm until the bitter end: it sends chills
down my spine and speaks to all that I love best about LotR.

Title: Least Expected Author: Imhiriel Genres: Alternate Universe:
Drabbles ID: 512
Reviewer: dkpalaska 2008-10-27 23:25:10
Spoilers!
I don't read many AU fanfics as a rule, although the ones I have read
I usually enjoy very much. Even so, I have noticed in my limited
sampling that the majority of AUs based upon a particular departure
from canon do not lead to an easier road for the protagonists. Quite
the contrary! As if Tolkien did not make things difficult enough, the
authors commence to drag our favorite characters through one
increasingly adversarial condition after another until I'm wincing and
cringing over their pains in the story.

["Least Expected"] definitely *fulfills* expectations on that account!
Her poor lead character! As if getting undeservedly whacked in LotR
wasn't bad enough, Imhiriel plausibly sets up an even more terrible
and unexpected fate. The author's mastery at succinct storytelling is
put to good use here, where the canon scene-of-departure is deftly
laid out amid a wonderfully dark, mysterious and unsettling
atmosphere. You just know something bad is going to happen. (The
title, so excellently chosen, matches both Halbarad's PoV and the
reader's.)

The actual content of the drabble is chilling enough all by itself,
but the worst of this scene is only presented by shifty allusion. Only
afterward, as I sat thinking on what must have occurred prior to this
encounter, did the full horror of Imhiriel's AU come over me.

I think I need a good stiff drink now...

Msg# 9514

one month left in awards Posted by Marta October 28, 2008 - 14:56:15 Topic ID# 9514
Hey guys,

In case it's escaped your notice, I wanted to remind everyone: voting
for the 2008 MEFAs ends at the end of November, just a month from now.
If you haven't started voting you still have time, but I recommend you
start now. As I said in the announcement I just sent out to the
promoters, why not review your first MEFA story this week? And if
you've already started reviewing, why not review your *next* MEFA
story this week?

Keep in mind that November 30 is also the deadline to *edit* any
reviews you have. If you have draft reviews, you'll need to change
them to hidden or final status by November 30, or else they won't be
counted. Conversely, if you have hidden reviews they will be displayed
AS IS on November 30. If you don't want this to happen change them to
draft status by November 30.

Finally, it seems that every year there's some confusion about time
zones. Time zones are tricksy! The awards staff and I actually
miscalculated the time zones ourselves at one point this year; and
while it didn't affect the awards, it just shows how easy a mistake
this is to make. But it's a potentially costly one. Remember, all MEFA
days are based on GMT, so voting ends at 11:59 PM GMT - *not* your
local time zone.

I found a tool that might help you out a bit:

http://www.worldtimeserver.com/convert_time_in_UTC.aspx

I suggest everyone enter 11:45 PM on November 30, and then select the
location that's nearest to you. This will estimate for you what time
voting ends in your timezone.

Happy reviewing, guys!

Marta

Msg# 9515

MEFA Reviews for Tuesday, October 28, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 28, 2008 - 20:02:48 Topic ID# 9515
Title: The Prisoner of Dol Guldur Author: Soledad Genres: Drama:
Final Partings ID: 102
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-28 10:46:37
Spoilers!
This is a moving tale of the rescue of Legolas' younger brother from
Dol Guldur after years of torment.His unrequited love for Arwen is
very moving as is the unique account of her death.I am glad she was
not alone.

Title: Engineering Author: SurgicalSteel Races: Men: Minas Tirith
ID: 696
Reviewer: Claudia 2008-10-28 19:52:52
I had just reread this recently, and I was pleased to see a nice piece
about the beginnings of Serinde's interest in the medical field. She
has such a bad injury herself and it is telling that she is more
interested in the process of what is being done to it and that is
helping her be brave. It shows her future character very well in this
small vignette. Most enjoyable!

Title: Tolkien's Parish: The Canonical Middle-earth Author: Steuard
Jensen Genres: Non-Fiction ID: 91
Reviewer: stefaniab 2008-10-28 19:55:40
Jensen's essay, already some years old, tackles the thorny issue of
what is/what is not canon among Tolkien's many works. The audience
Jensen addresses appears to be literary critics, aspiring Tolkien
scholars, and hard core fans. His suggestions and criteria for
determining what is canon also work well for those of us who write
subcreations of Tolkien's primary and secondary creations. It is these
secondary creations in the books not published during Tolkien's
lifetime that are, naturally, the most problematic, in that they
contradict each other or wander off on threads that suddenly end.

In particular, Jensen points out that most Tolkien fans eventually
develop their own individualized version of the Tolkien canon. I
couldn't agree more.

This essay is quite thought provoking, well written, but only
recommended for those who want to investigate what constitutes canon
for Tolkien's vast fantasy universe.

Title: Fine Art for Future Generations Author: stefaniab Genres:
Humor: Gondor ID: 561
Reviewer: Claudia 2008-10-28 19:57:12
hee. This was really funny! I giggled at the artwork near the ficlet, too!

Title: The Dooming of Small Hands Author: Thundera Tiger Times:
Late Third Age ID: 639
Reviewer: Claudia 2008-10-28 20:01:15
This piece is an excellent portrayal of the type of conversation that
surely must have gone on between Elrond and Gandalf. It really shows
the real burden that they both have. Gandalf truly does hold the fate
of all the Free Peoples in his hands. And it is obvious that they both
care deeply for Frodo, too, not just as Ringbearer but as Frodo.

Title: Moved to Pity Author: Imhiriel Genres: Drama: General
Drabbles ID: 366
Reviewer: Claudia 2008-10-28 20:02:58
This is a beautifully poignant drabble.

Title: The Healers from the Sea Author: Mews1945 Genres: Drama:
Hurt/Comfort ID: 202
Reviewer: Claudia 2008-10-28 20:04:49
This is definitely one of my all-time favorite fics by Mews. There is
something deeply healing about dolphins and the idea of mixing them
and Frodo on the way to the Undying Lands just makes me smile. Such a
gentle and healing piece!

Title: Saruman of Many Colours Author: Tanaqui Genres: Drama:
General Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 439
Reviewer: Moreth 2008-10-28 20:05:28
This series of drabbles shows Saruman in many different situations,
but always scheming to advance his own plans!

My personal favourite is ['Constraints'], in which the inevitable
consequence of his behaviour catches up with him. I could almost find
it in me to feel sorry for him...

But then the final two drabbles show Sharkey's revenge, and suddenly I
don't feel so sorry after all!

Title: I Can't Author: Antane Races: Hobbits: Friendship ID: 24
Reviewer: Claudia 2008-10-28 20:08:14
What a splendid look at Sam and Frodo's friendship through the years
and how they supported each other!

Title: The Shadow Author: Linda Hoyland Genres: Drama: Ring War
Drabbles ID: 25
Reviewer: Claudia 2008-10-28 20:10:11
This drabble made me cry. I connected so deeply to Frodo and that's
the sign of a very good story, especially since it was only 100 words
long.

Title: The Birthday Blessing Author: Larner Times: Fourth Age and
Beyond: Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 687
Reviewer: Claudia 2008-10-28 20:12:38
ah, this was truly beautiful. I love how Frodo, Aragorn, and Sam smile
upon the blooming trees and think about their beloved friends. Sam's
birthday seems like a particularly appropriate time to do that.

Title: Dark Dreams Author: SlightlyTookish Races: Hobbits:
Hurt/Comfort ID: 550
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-28 21:05:52
Dear Merry! He never complains, does he?

Title: The Westering Fire Author: Aprilkat Races: Hobbits ID: 200
Reviewer: Nancy Brooke 2008-10-28 21:09:33
Spoilers!
This is a vivid glimpse into what the folks at home experienced,
particularly the women.

Title: In absentia Author: Robinka Races: Elves: House of Finwe
ID: 84
Reviewer: Dawn Felagund 2008-10-28 22:21:24
Robinka's "In Absentia" is easily one of the most emotionally intense
stories that I have encountered in Silmarillion-based fiction. Where
other stories often falter into cheap angst, the emotions of Robinka's
story simmer and seethe on the page; one can see not only the tragedy
that is Maedhros ruined but the pride and power that still courses
through the blood of the leader of the Feanorian line.

Silmfic is full of angsty, weepy post-Thangorodrim fiction. "In
Absentia" eclipses this, presenting an emotional honesty that doesn't
forget that Maedhros and Fingon have lived to tell of Angband and the
Helcaraxe, respectively, and--even as they reach their emotional
breaking points--are not likely to succumb utterly to the pain they
have both faced ... and survived. These characters still have
centuries of fight left in them, and this story shows how even after
one of the most trying events in the history of the Noldor thus far,
Maedhros and Fingon still retain much of that fire of Valinor.

[One might say he was a statue carved in marble and adorned with fire,
yet cold and unseeing.]

The imagery of Robinka's writing is likewise intense, fitting well the
story that it serves and transporting the reader to a world of fire
and shadow, much like the Light-accustomed Noldor must have seen upon
their arrivals in Beleriand with a mixture of marvel and horror.

Title: Footsteps in Time Author: Keiliss Races: Elves ID: 76
Reviewer: Dawn Felagund 2008-10-29 00:59:36
Spoilers!
Keiliss's story covers a great span of time and many important events,
but what makes "Footsteps in Time" a special story is the grace with
which it is written. Keiliss has an eye for details and a commendable
skill in depicting them in her writing, and readers here are
transported to Doriath, to explore the wondrous confinement of
Menegroth, then on through the forests and along the coasts of Beleriand.

Also excellently written is how Galadriel learned and honed the
foresight for which she is renowned. Conveying such an intimate
experience to a reader is not easy (I, too, have attempted it), but
Keiliss works it easily into the story, bringing the reader into
Galadriel's experience of knowing the future and--most poignantly--the
terrible events afflicting her family in the present.

There are so many other things about this story to adore: the love
story between Galadriel and Celeborn; the discussion of cultural
differences between the Elven people and the newly arrive mortals; the
political intrigue of so many Elven factions competing for the same
elusive favor; the constant underlying sense of dread as history
unfolds, tempered by occasional moments of joy that nearly sparkle on
the page. In short, it is an excellent story and well worth the time
to read it.

Msg# 9516

Re: one month left in awards Posted by Arthur Boccaccio October 29, 2008 - 2:29:37 Topic ID# 9514
Why is the deadline now November 30 instead of December 30 the way it was
last year? Just want to know.

Arthur

On Tue, Oct 28, 2008 at 8:56 PM, Marta <melayton@gmail.com> wrote:

> Hey guys,
>
> In case it's escaped your notice, I wanted to remind everyone: voting
> for the 2008 MEFAs ends at the end of November, just a month from now.
> If you haven't started voting you still have time, but I recommend you
> start now. As I said in the announcement I just sent out to the
> promoters, why not review your first MEFA story this week? And if
> you've already started reviewing, why not review your *next* MEFA
> story this week?
>
> Keep in mind that November 30 is also the deadline to *edit* any
> reviews you have. If you have draft reviews, you'll need to change
> them to hidden or final status by November 30, or else they won't be
> counted. Conversely, if you have hidden reviews they will be displayed
> AS IS on November 30. If you don't want this to happen change them to
> draft status by November 30.
>
> Finally, it seems that every year there's some confusion about time
> zones. Time zones are tricksy! The awards staff and I actually
> miscalculated the time zones ourselves at one point this year; and
> while it didn't affect the awards, it just shows how easy a mistake
> this is to make. But it's a potentially costly one. Remember, all MEFA
> days are based on GMT, so voting ends at 11:59 PM GMT - *not* your
> local time zone.
>
> I found a tool that might help you out a bit:
>
> http://www.worldtimeserver.com/convert_time_in_UTC.aspx
>
> I suggest everyone enter 11:45 PM on November 30, and then select the
> location that's nearest to you. This will estimate for you what time
> voting ends in your timezone.
>
> Happy reviewing, guys!
>
> Marta
>
>



--
"What part of 'You're dead' don't you understand?" -- Nmo to an
Unidentified Elven Fa giving the Lord of Mandos grief

****
Auta i lm! Utlie'n aur! Battle Cry of the Noldor at the Dagor
Nirnaeth Arnediad

Aur entuluva! Battle Cry of Hrin at the Dagor Nirnath Arnediad

Utlie'n Estel Hope hath come


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

Msg# 9517

Re: one month left in awards Posted by Marta October 29, 2008 - 2:44:17 Topic ID# 9514
Hi Arthur,

We started the awards a month earlier than we did last years. The
amount of voting time is the same as it was last year, things just
shifted up a month. This is not a change new with this year - the
awards have begin at different points each year, depending on when we
finished up the previous years' discussions and when the website was
ready to go.

We did purposefully try to start earlier so as to avoid conflicts with
Christmas/Chanukkah/etc. celebrations. If the end of November is a bad
time for people as well, then we can look at shifting the schedule
earlier for 2009, if we can get things done in time.

Marta


On Wed, Oct 29, 2008 at 3:29 AM, Arthur Boccaccio <namondil@gmail.com> wrote:
> Why is the deadline now November 30 instead of December 30 the way it was
> last year? Just want to know.
>
> Arthur
>
> On Tue, Oct 28, 2008 at 8:56 PM, Marta <melayton@gmail.com> wrote:
>
>> Hey guys,
>>
>> In case it's escaped your notice, I wanted to remind everyone: voting
>> for the 2008 MEFAs ends at the end of November, just a month from now.
>> If you haven't started voting you still have time, but I recommend you
>> start now. As I said in the announcement I just sent out to the
>> promoters, why not review your first MEFA story this week? And if
>> you've already started reviewing, why not review your *next* MEFA
>> story this week?
>>
>> Keep in mind that November 30 is also the deadline to *edit* any
>> reviews you have. If you have draft reviews, you'll need to change
>> them to hidden or final status by November 30, or else they won't be
>> counted. Conversely, if you have hidden reviews they will be displayed
>> AS IS on November 30. If you don't want this to happen change them to
>> draft status by November 30.
>>
>> Finally, it seems that every year there's some confusion about time
>> zones. Time zones are tricksy! The awards staff and I actually
>> miscalculated the time zones ourselves at one point this year; and
>> while it didn't affect the awards, it just shows how easy a mistake
>> this is to make. But it's a potentially costly one. Remember, all MEFA
>> days are based on GMT, so voting ends at 11:59 PM GMT - *not* your
>> local time zone.
>>
>> I found a tool that might help you out a bit:
>>
>> http://www.worldtimeserver.com/convert_time_in_UTC.aspx
>>
>> I suggest everyone enter 11:45 PM on November 30, and then select the
>> location that's nearest to you. This will estimate for you what time
>> voting ends in your timezone.
>>
>> Happy reviewing, guys!
>>
>> Marta
>>
>>
>
>
>
> --
> "What part of 'You're dead' don't you understand?" -- Nmo to an
> Unidentified Elven Fa giving the Lord of Mandos grief
>
> ****
> Auta i lm! Utlie'n aur!  Battle Cry of the Noldor at the Dagor
> Nirnaeth Arnediad
>
> Aur entuluva!  Battle Cry of Hrin at the Dagor Nirnath Arnediad
>
> Utlie'n Estel  Hope hath come
>
>
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
>
>
> ------------------------------------
>
> Visit our website: http://www.mefawards.net/MEFA2008/Yahoo! Groups Links
>
>
>
>

Msg# 9518

Re: one month left in awards Posted by Arthur Boccaccio October 29, 2008 - 2:57:20 Topic ID# 9514
Hi Marta,

Thanks for the clarification. This is only my second MEFA so some things are
still new for me. *grin* Haven't been able to read or review for the last
month because of my teacher training course, but I finish this week so I can
spend more time on catching up. I'm only a couple reviews away from my
reviewing goal so that's not a problem.

Hope Fordham is treating you well.

Fiondil

On Wed, Oct 29, 2008 at 8:44 AM, Marta <melayton@gmail.com> wrote:

> Hi Arthur,
>
> We started the awards a month earlier than we did last years. The
> amount of voting time is the same as it was last year, things just
> shifted up a month. This is not a change new with this year - the
> awards have begin at different points each year, depending on when we
> finished up the previous years' discussions and when the website was
> ready to go.
>
> We did purposefully try to start earlier so as to avoid conflicts with
> Christmas/Chanukkah/etc. celebrations. If the end of November is a bad
> time for people as well, then we can look at shifting the schedule
> earlier for 2009, if we can get things done in time.
>
> Marta
>
>
> On Wed, Oct 29, 2008 at 3:29 AM, Arthur Boccaccio <namondil@gmail.com>
> wrote:
> > Why is the deadline now November 30 instead of December 30 the way it was
> > last year? Just want to know.
> >
> > Arthur
> >
> > On Tue, Oct 28, 2008 at 8:56 PM, Marta <melayton@gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> >> Hey guys,
> >>
> >> In case it's escaped your notice, I wanted to remind everyone: voting
> >> for the 2008 MEFAs ends at the end of November, just a month from now.
> >> If you haven't started voting you still have time, but I recommend you
> >> start now. As I said in the announcement I just sent out to the
> >> promoters, why not review your first MEFA story this week? And if
> >> you've already started reviewing, why not review your *next* MEFA
> >> story this week?
> >>
> >> Keep in mind that November 30 is also the deadline to *edit* any
> >> reviews you have. If you have draft reviews, you'll need to change
> >> them to hidden or final status by November 30, or else they won't be
> >> counted. Conversely, if you have hidden reviews they will be displayed
> >> AS IS on November 30. If you don't want this to happen change them to
> >> draft status by November 30.
> >>
> >> Finally, it seems that every year there's some confusion about time
> >> zones. Time zones are tricksy! The awards staff and I actually
> >> miscalculated the time zones ourselves at one point this year; and
> >> while it didn't affect the awards, it just shows how easy a mistake
> >> this is to make. But it's a potentially costly one. Remember, all MEFA
> >> days are based on GMT, so voting ends at 11:59 PM GMT - *not* your
> >> local time zone.
> >>
> >> I found a tool that might help you out a bit:
> >>
> >> http://www.worldtimeserver.com/convert_time_in_UTC.aspx
> >>
> >> I suggest everyone enter 11:45 PM on November 30, and then select the
> >> location that's nearest to you. This will estimate for you what time
> >> voting ends in your timezone.
> >>
> >> Happy reviewing, guys!
> >>
> >> Marta
> >>
> >>
> >
> >
> >
> > --
> > "What part of 'You're dead' don't you understand?" -- Nmo to an
> > Unidentified Elven Fa giving the Lord of Mandos grief
> >
> > ****
> > Auta i lm! Utlie'n aur! Battle Cry of the Noldor at the Dagor
> > Nirnaeth Arnediad
> >
> > Aur entuluva! Battle Cry of Hrin at the Dagor Nirnath Arnediad
> >
> > Utlie'n Estel Hope hath come
> >
> >
> > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
> >
> >
> > ------------------------------------
> >
> > Visit our website: http://www.mefawards.net/MEFA2008/Yahoo! Groups Links
> >
> >
> >
> >
>
> ------------------------------------
>
> Visit our website: http://www.mefawards.net/MEFA2008/Yahoo! Groups Links
>
>
>
>


--
"What part of 'You're dead' don't you understand?" -- Nmo to an
Unidentified Elven Fa giving the Lord of Mandos grief

****
Auta i lm! Utlie'n aur! Battle Cry of the Noldor at the Dagor
Nirnaeth Arnediad

Aur entuluva! Battle Cry of Hrin at the Dagor Nirnath Arnediad

Utlie'n Estel Hope hath come


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

Msg# 9519

MEFA Reviews for Wednesday, October 29, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 29, 2008 - 19:51:45 Topic ID# 9519
Title: Ghost Author: Elleth Races: Elves: Noldor Fixed-Length
Ficlets ID: 218
Reviewer: Dawn Felagund 2008-10-29 01:14:10
Spoilers!
Elleth writes some of the most heart-wrenching experimental fiction of
any in the Tolkien fandom. "Ghost" is a wonderful example of her skill
as an author as she creates a poignant scene in few words of how
Nerdanel discovered Feanor's death and, in her own way, bids him
farewell, despite their distance and estrangement. Dream-like in mood,
the reader experiences Feanor's compelling presence and "awakens" with
a jolt much like Nerdanel must have felt at her discovery of the truth
of her vision. "Ghost" demonstrates again Elleth's skill at using her
craft to imbue her work with meaning beyond what can be said with words.

Title: The Westering Fire Author: Aprilkat Races: Hobbits ID: 200
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-29 07:31:48
Very credible and engaging take on Rosie's character; I especially
loved the fierceness she exhibits while keeping a clear head; the
longing for Sam tempered by a strong will.

Evocative descriptions of this particular day, and deft references to
what had been going on in the Shire for the past few months - just
enough to give a clear picture without it overwhelming the main plot.

Title: The Language of Waves Author: Claudia Races: Hobbits ID: 193
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-29 07:32:36
Beautiful description of the sea and sand; I especially liked the way
the waves were described in their changeability. I loved Frodo's
comparison between Elves and the sea - very insightful and
thought-provoking.

Just a lovely, gentle story of a day at the beach. Very relaxing to
read, actually *g*!

Title: Trouble at Bag End Author: Angiet Races: Hobbits: Childhood
ID: 728
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-29 07:33:40
I'm not entirely sold on the premise, but it was much fun to just
dispend disbelief for the duration of the story and chortle at the
scenes described here. I especially loved just how flustered bachelor
Bilbo was and how Aragorn quickly went into healer-mode to find a way
to "deal" with the situation. And baby Frodo was adorable, I confess *g*.

Title: Silver Blossoms Blown Author: Ignoble Bard Races:
Cross-Cultural ID: 646
Reviewer: Robinka 2008-10-29 08:54:08
A fascinating and very well crafted take on the first meeting of Varda
and the elves. Varda's observations and reflections are very nicely
confronted with a drop of foreshadowing as to what the fate of the
Eldar might bring. Well done!

Title: A New Day Author: Oshun Genres: Longer Works ID: 35
Reviewer: Moreth 2008-10-29 15:20:27
I'll be honest, I've read many published works of fiction that seemed
less polished and entertained me far less than Oshun's ['A New Day']!
What can I say? I love this story! And reviewing it has given me an
excellent excuse to read it again.

Oshun takes what could have been a clichd romantic pairing, and makes
something new and interesting. The visual images of the camp,
especially the contrast between the rough-and-ready military base and
the touches of luxury that the Noldor managed to bring with them, is
excellent. The attention to detail really makes this story shine.

Most importantly, the actions of the characters are throroughly
believable. None of the protagonists are emotionally over-wrought and
gloomy, but neither is the story some 'feel-good' fluff. The political
situation is complex, Meadhros is far from well, and yet somehow
everyone must deal with the situation and move forwards. Oshun uses
excellent (and often very humorous) dialogue and some well-written
erotic scenes to great effect in order to keep the mood positive and
upbeat.

It may be fanfiction, but it is fanfiction of the highest quality!

If I have one complaint, it is that Oshun sets a dauntingly high
standard for others to aspire to...


Title: And Then There Was Cake, or Begetting Day Horrors Author:
Klose Races: Elves: Family ID: 540
Reviewer: Moreth 2008-10-29 16:26:32
Spoilers!
Bad songs, too much alcohol and (horror of horrors) relatives!

Klose has written a highly entertaining account of just how
embarassing Maedhros's birthday party might have been... but at least
there was cake! (Although perhaps the additional adornment on that
didn't help very much...)

Thoroughly amusing (and really very silly), this story is just fun to
read!

Title: Black Memory Author: mrkinch Races: Villains: Fixed-Length
Ficlets ID: 603
Reviewer: Moreth 2008-10-29 17:37:06
Spoilers!
This is a cleverly constructed drabble that covers the storyline, a
description of Angband, the appearance of Morgoth and then tops it all
with that last line!

Bonus points for having Lthien unable to hold Morgoth's gaze...

Title: Grandmum's Button Box Author: pippinfan88 Races: Hobbits:
Family ID: 135
Reviewer: Pearl Took 2008-10-29 19:30:11
Spoilers!
This is a quaint and charming family story, the inspiration for which
came from the authors own life.

In digging through Grandma Eglantine's button box to find a new button
for little Faramir Took's nightshirt, a whole world of family memories
are awoken. The whole scene is played out in the homey setting of the
family parlor of the now Took and Thain, Peregrin Took and his wife
Diamond. Their children listen eagerly as their grandmother tells them
the stories the various buttons bring to her memory. It is touching
that Pippin worries that memories of Paladin will bring to much sorrow
to his widowed mother, but she assures him all is well. That it is now
easier for her to think about her husband. and she wants the children
to learn about their grandfather.

Everything is just so right in this tale. These are hobbits at their
most hobbity, sharing love and memories with their family.

Most Excellently Well Done, Pippinfan!

Title: Lily Took Author: Cathleen Races: Hobbits: Childhood ID: 147
Reviewer: Pearl Took 2008-10-29 19:43:18
This story is as warm and soft as the kitten who gives it it's title.

Pippin has had a long morning and wants Tulip, his knitted piglet
friend, to go out to play with him. They have a wonderful discussion
about why she spent the morning on the shelf with the rest of the
stuffed animals, then she and her hobbit lad go off to the barn. They
do linger on their way to smell the delicious smells coming from
Pippin's mother's bread baking going on in the kitchen.

Pippin has a surprise to show Tulip. At first, she only has eyes for
something that shouldn't be in the barn in amongst the bales of hay,
but she quickly forgives him.

You need to go meet the wonderful characters in this story for yourself!

A beautiful, gentle story, Cathleen!

Msg# 9520

ADMIN – Focus on Late Third Age Posted by Tanaqui October 30, 2008 - 16:41:58 Topic ID# 9520
Hey guys,

Here is your weekly admin post this week we're focusing stories set in
the Late Third Age. These are the tales set in and around the Great
Years of the War of the Ring. We have stories about events in the main
action "away in the South", and tales about what was happening elsewhere
in Mirkwood and Rivendell and the Shire. We have stories about dealing
with the aftermath of battle and victory, and stories about rebuilding
for the future. If you love "The Lord of the Rings" and enjoy tales
relating to the events recounted in the book, this list should help you
find more of the kind of stories you'd like to review.

For the list of pieces in this announcement I've used an author's main
category selection. Each author selects three category choices, only one
of which it can be placed in; but the author has still described it as
being suitable for three category choices, even if it isn't placed
there. So if an author selected the "Times" category Late Third Age it
will be on this list.

Finding stories that selected a certain main category is pretty
straightforward. To do this

1. Log in to www.mefawards.net/MEFA2008/
2. Click the "Stories" link at the top of the page.
3. Click the "Show Filter" link.
4. Click the "Clear All Filters" button if you've used the filter before
this session.
5. Select the genre, race, or time period you would like from the
"Genre, Race, Time" filter (sixth from the bottom).
6. Click the "Display selected nominations" button.

This will pull up all of the nominated pieces that selected your main
category as a first-, second-, or third-choice category, even if they
didn't end up categorized in that main category.

******************************

Here are the stories competing in this year's competition whose author
selected Times: Late Third Age to describe their piece.

Adaneth
---(63) Loudwater
agape4gondor
---(66) A Cat in King Elessar's Court
---(111) There Was A Hobbit
---(127) Farewell
---(425) Letters From Faramir
Altariel
---(104) In Passing
Amarok
---(602) My Brother. My Captain. My King.
Ancalime8301
---(185) Slings and Arrows
annmarwalk
---(266) Enticements
Antane
---(24) I Can't
Antane/Frodo of the Shire CoAuthors
---(670) Letters To A Dear Friend
Aprilkat
---(200) The Westering Fire
---(229) Secrets
---(733) Labour of Love
Aranel Took
---(259) Nine Companions
---(471) Rebirth
Aratlithiel
---(483) Labour Pains
Ariel/Auntie
Meesh/Budgielover/Cathleen/Dreamflower/Gryffinjack/kellyfrankenfield/Lindelea/Pearl
Took/Rosie Took/SlightlyTookish CoAuthors
---(496) To Sleep, Perchance to Dream
Armariel
---(428) The Gardener Speaks
---(459) Balm
Avon
---(7) Of Dreams...
---(721) Loving a Book Lover
Baranduin
---(420) Many Branches
Branwyn (Lady Branwyn)
---(19) Restoration
---(22) Horse Sense
---(72) In the Van
---(400) Steward's Trumpets
---(401) Forfeit
Budgielover
---(546) Dangerous Folk
---(731) A Moment in the Morning in Bree
calanthe11
---(445) Coming Home to Crickhollow
Cara Loup
---(476) That Fate Them Bore
Cathleen
---(241) Pippin and the Incredible Shrinking Piglet
celticbard
---(373) The Price of Pity
ConnieMarie
---(395) One Step More - The Heroism of Frodo Baggins
Cuthalion
---(264) Cinnamon and Chocolate
Dana
---(26) The North Delving Incident
---(89) There and Back
---(640) In This These Days of Glory
---(641) A Path of Wisdom
---(683) What Goes Up
---(685) Five Turnings of the Year
docmon
---(340) Answering the Call
---(473) Choosing
Dot
---(169) A Problem Shared
draylon
---(626) Captain of Mordor
Dreamflower
---(146) Of First Impressions and Old Friends
---(299) On Amon Sl
---(427) And all was made ready
Dwimordene
---(106) On Far Fields
---(480) The Kindly Airs
---(481) Recognition
---(482) The King's Colors
Elanor Gardner
---(519) Sam's Crosswise Verse
---(520) Frodo's Crosswise Verse
Elen Kortirion
---(12) Hearts of Stone
---(95) Pulling the Wool
---(474) A Moment Away
---(517) The Turning Wheel
Elena Tiriel
---(208) Renewal
---(209) Men of the Twilight
---(465) Last Stroke
Eleon Gamgee
---(716) Dreams or Reality
erobey
---(671) Legolas' Seat
---(712) Not Yet
fantasyfan
---(231) In the Hands of the King
---(642) Dispelling the Fog
febobe
---(239) Cold
---(628) Primum Non Nocere (First, Do No Harm)
Fiondil
---(415) BRIDGE: P Valaraucar ar Nmier
foxrafer (csevans8)
---(604) The Journey
Galadriel
---(153) Trajectory
Gentle Hobbit
---(235) Frodos Dremes
---(336) The Ribbon
---(460) Candles
Gloria Mundi
---(594) Gifts
Golden
---(142) A Friend's Hug
---(596) A Hobbity Wizard
Gwynnyd
---(268) Aftermaths and Consequences
Imhiriel
---(335) The Heart of a Knight
---(368) Mournful Fords
---(370) Bibliophile
---(378) Tying Notes
---(512) Least Expected
iorhael
---(666) Stabat Mater
Isabeau of Greenlea
---(705) Parth Galen
---(706) Homecoming
Ithil-valon
---(113) Boromir and Teddy
Jay of Lasgalen
---(48) Wedding Nerves
---(176) The Legend of the Grey Riders
kitt_otter
---(702) Hidden Watcher
Lady Bluejay
---(158) Waterloo
---(162) A Dream Come True
---(167) The Return
Larner
---(59) The Lost Restored
---(62) I Stand No Longer Alone
---(68) The Ritual Disturbed
---(112) Concerning Walls
---(394) Jewels of Light
---(477) The Keys of the Realm
---(618) By Ship or Grave
---(681) For the Want of ...
---(691) A Maid Waiting
---(694) A Summer Night's Peace
Lily
---(109) When Trouble Came
Linaewen
---(267) A Great Evil Unmade
---(576) Feet That Wander
Linda Hoyland
---(25) The Shadow
---(418) Comes the moment to decide
---(488) Seeking the Sun
---(521) Sour Milk
---(569) Drawing the Eye
Lindelea
---(301) Three Songs
---(509) The Farmer's Son
---(688) Of Cake and Crumbs and Distant Dreams
---(689) Where the Sky Kisses the Horizon, There My Dreams Lie
---(690) ...and the sound of a battered heart, beating
---(692) Rude Awakening
Lithilien Quicksilver
---(278) The Clear Ringing Of Silver Trumpets
Makamu
---(585) Dark Light
Mariole
---(240) Wormtongue
Marta
---(344) Summer Nights
---(365) They Also Serve
---(621) The Least of Rings
Nancy Brooke
---(172) Tree of Knowledge
---(287) The Waker
---(506) Before You Go
nau_tika
---(556) The Last Throw
NeumeIndil
---(411) The Dark One
Nieriel Raina
---(163) Utlie'n Aur
---(559) Dance of the Deer and Mmak
---(701) Free To Live
---(709) Hold To Hope
Pearl Took
---(388) Seven Sisters
---(653) The Right to Bear Arms
---(654) For Our Friends
PipMer
---(302) A Time to Hope
---(525) Regarding Ents
pippinfan88
---(380) Summer's End
Primsong
---(597) Weathertop
---(720) Merry on the Pelennor Fields
Queen Galadriel
---(402) Call of the Dream
---(697) The Queen's Gift
Raksha the Demon
---(44) Gone Amiss
---(45) Before the Black Gate
---(249) Sing All Ye People!
---(294) Reflections in the Smoke
---(313) The Prisoner of Time
---(421) The Captain's New Clothes
---(649) The Conscience of the King
rhyselle
---(501) The Search
Ribby
---(122) Blood and Iron
shirebound
---(121) Seven Stones and Seven Stars and One White Tree
---(599) Pippin's Secret
---(633) Feeling Safe
---(727) A Warm Sun Shining
SlightlyTookish
---(315) Shelter From the Storm
---(550) Dark Dreams
Soledad
---(102) The Prisoner of Dol Guldur
sophinisba solis
---(199) Some Seasons
Soubrettina
---(30) Thawing Lily
Spindle Berry
---(148) The Warmth of Morning
stefaniab
---(622) Hope comes for Estel
Tanaqui
---(372) Baker's Dozen
---(437) Handy With A Sword
---(438) Another Country
---(446) Relief
---(450) Stewards
---(719) The World Is Changing
Telcontar Rulz
---(203) Chance Encounter
The Lauderdale
---(575) The Captain's Mare
Thundera Tiger
---(470) Oathbreakers
---(639) The Dooming of Small Hands
Vana Tuivana
---(343) The Night's Eye
Virtuella
---(607) Promise and Sorrow
viv
---(180) Care to Ride My Hot-Rod Fell Beast?
White Gull
---(619) Rose, Rose, Rose
---(632) Boromir at the Bat
Yavie Feels Pretty
---(464) Tarnished Ivory

To find more information about any of these pieces, just do the following

1. Log in to www.mefawards.net/MEFA2008/
2. Click the "Stories" link at the top of the web page.
3. Type the Story ID followed by the "#" sign into the search bar, and
click the "Search" button.

For instance, searching for "335#" will bring up story #335, The Heart
of a Knight by Imhiriel.

Late Third Age stories are competing in the following subcategories:

---Genres: Adventure: Incomplete
---Genres: Alternate Universe: Drabbles
---Genres: Alternate Universe: Other Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Genres: Alternate Universe: Steward's Family
---Genres: Drama: Featuring Aragorn
---Genres: Drama: Featuring Boromir or Faramir
---Genres: Drama: Featuring Frodo or Sam
---Genres: Drama: Final Partings
---Genres: Drama: General
---Genres: Drama: General Drabbles
---Genres: Drama: General Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Genres: Drama: Hurt/Comfort
---Genres: Drama: Incomplete
---Genres: Drama: Ring War Drabbles
---Genres: Horror: General
---Genres: Humor: Elven Lands
---Genres: Humor: General
---Genres: Humor: Gondor
---Genres: Humor: Other Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Genres: Poetry: Drama
---Genres: Poetry: Hobbits
---Genres: Poetry: Late Third Age
---Genres: Romance: Drabbles
---Genres: Romance: General
---Genres: Romance: Gondor
---Genres: Romance: Other Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Races: Cross-Cultural: Elves and Men
---Races: Cross-Cultural: Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Races: Cross-Cultural: Friendship
---Races: Cross-Cultural: Frodo and Faramir
---Races: Cross-Cultural: General
---Races: Cross-Cultural: Post-Ring War
---Races: Elves: Drabbles
---Races: Elves: Mirkwood Elves
---Races: Elves: Other Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Races: Hobbits: Childhood
---Races: Hobbits: Friendship
---Races: Hobbits: General
---Races: Hobbits: Hurt/Comfort
---Races: Hobbits: Incomplete
---Races: Hobbits: Post-Ring War
---Races: Men: General
---Races: Men: General Drabbles
---Races: Men: General Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Races: Men: Gondor Drabbles
---Races: Men: Minas Tirith
---Races: Other Beings: General
---Races: Villains: Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Races: Villains: General
---Times: Fourth Age and Beyond: General
---Times: Late Third Age: General
---Times: Late Third Age: General Fixed-Length Ficlets
---Times: Late Third Age: Gondor
---Times: Late Third Age: Gondor Drabbles

Remember: The lists of stories and sub-categories listed above are based
on the main categories chosen by the author.

Happy reading!

Tanaqui
(MEFA Tech Support)

P.S. - If you noticed a mistake in this post, please email about it so I
can check whether a mistake has been made and, if necessary, correct my
announcement. You can reach me privately at
techsupport(.at.)mefawards(.dot.)net. Thanks!
----------


----------


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[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

Msg# 9521

MEFA Reviews for Thursday, October 30, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 30, 2008 - 20:29:03 Topic ID# 9521
Title: Lessons from the Mountain Author: MithLuin Races: Elves:
Incomplete ID: 221
Reviewer: Dawn Felagund 2008-10-30 01:33:18
Spoilers!
One of my favorite topics as a reader, writer, and researcher is the
halls of Mandos and Elven afterlife--cheerful, I know!--so MithLuin's
story enticed me from the first. And it quickly proved worthy of my
attention.

"Lessons from the Mountain" is chiefly a story of healing. Maedhros
awakes to find himself in the halls of Mandos, facing judgment of the
Valar and an eternity in the company of the dead. He must come to
accept his deeds and the terrible guilt they bring with them.

But within this central narrative are dozens of smaller stories.
Maedhros encounters Elves he knew in life--from his brothers to the
soldiers that served under him in the Battle-under-stars--each
striving to discover his own sense of peace. Through their memories,
each begins to achieve this, and Maedhros assumes a role almost as a
healer, arranging that those he cares about should find comfort, even
if it means that they will depart and he will lose them forever.

What attracts me to stories about the halls of Mandos is that this is
an area of canon largely shrouded in mystery. Authors are given a good
amount of freedom to envision the halls however they please and to
convince readers of their particular visions.

MithLuin does not skimp on this, and her ideas about Mandos are as
entertaining as they are insightful. I felt the strangeness of the
place as Maedhros grew acclimated, growing accustomed--as did he--over
time with the idiosyncrasies of a place where none have bodies and yet
live. Some of her ideas--like the symbolic role of Maedhros's left
hand--are unique and well-developed, and she presents some of the most
compelling Valar of any author I've read.

In conclusion, though, "Lessons from the Mountain" is exactly what a
longer story should be: It is vivid, with intriguing plot turns and
memorable characters, with scenes of great beauty and insight tempered
by moments where I literally laughed out loud. It is a fine piece; I
look forward to its completion and give it my highest recommendations.

Title: WAR: A Promise Before Dying Author: Fiondil Times:
Multi-Age ID: 55
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-30 02:29:03
Spoilers!
An interesting story of Gil-galad that begins with his death and ends
with his reunion, at the end of the Third Age, with his once-herald
Elrond. Much of the story concerns the relationship of Ereinion and
Elrond, and issues of trust and oaths between them. Fiondil explores
the friendship, and the death of Ereinion and centuries of separation
between him and Elrond, with his customary grace.

Title: The Dark of Night Author: Ellie Genres: Horror ID: 484
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-30 02:45:48
Spoilers!
An exciting, juicy, action-packed horror story; Elves v. Spawn of
Ungoliant, in the trees and caves of the early Third Age. Great
descriptions, good plotting; and I loved the explanation of how/why
Galadriel procured the light of Earendil's star which will one day
serve Frodo and Sam so well.

Title: Black Memory Author: mrkinch Races: Villains: Fixed-Length
Ficlets ID: 603
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-30 03:01:16
Spoilers!
There are not enough drabbles, or even good fanfiction pieces in
general about Luthien; which is understandable, since she is more
powerful even than Galadriel, and possibly more influential in
Middle-earth history. Here, a cleverly written drabble captures the
rising, rushing horror of Luthien's confrontation with Sauron's
dreadful master. The method of writing the entire drabble as one
sentence works well; the end does not disappoint, it makes sense, and
captures Luthien's own otherness as well.


Title: Eagle of the Star Author: Neoinean Genres: Adventure:
Incomplete ID: 327
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-30 03:21:02
Spoilers!
This is one of my favourite stories which I hope very much will be
completed.I just love Aragorn here,the caring healer as well as the
great warrior and I my eyes were too moist to keep reading when the
woman died in childbirth.
This story conveys like very few others the true horror of war and
battle,burning and slaughter.

I especially liked Aragorn's courage and also the fact he is shown
here as very human and badly effected at times by the horrors he sees.

This is a truly outstanding story which I would certainly buy if it
were in the shops. I highly reccommend it.

Title: To See A World Author: Nightwing Genres: Adventure:
Incomplete ID: 330
Reviewer: Linda Hoyland 2008-10-30 03:25:20
Spoilers!
This is a gripping and beautifully written story which has me hooked
even though I'm not a fan of Aragorn and Legolas adventure stories!
This one is just so good it is impossible not to love. The scene of
Aragorn in the snow even inspired me to attempt a similiar scene in
one of my own stories with Nightwing's kind permission.
There is never a dull moment in this story and the reader is kept
gripped throughout. I loved the original characters which greatly add
to the reader's enjoyment,not least the sock hunting cat! I look
forward to seeing how this story ends.

Title: Duty, Honour, Country Author: Rhapsody Races: Elves: Other
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 81
Reviewer: Robinka 2008-10-30 08:39:17
As always when Rhapsody plunges into the thoughts of her favorite
character -- Maglor -- she brings a skilfully crafted gem of a story,
and this set of drabbles is no exception. She explores Maglor's
motivations and decisions with care and deep knowledge that shines
through the story, not matter what form for it she chooses. I can only
applaud her wonderful choices of words and inspirations. Bravo!

Title: Moon of the Sea Author: pandemonium_213 Times: Second and
Early Third Age ID: 213
Reviewer: Dawn Felagund 2008-10-30 20:54:45
Pandemonium has a knack for taking the characters that no one else
writes about and making them her own. In "Moon of the Sea," she seizes
the most neglected age in Tolkien fanficthe Secondand sketches one
of those characters who must have existed yet goes unmentioned in the
text: Isilme, the mother of Isildur. As with all of Pandemonium's
writing, "Moon of the Sea" overflows with the intrigue that comes of
visiting unfamiliar lands. Even in a few short vignettes, Rommena and
the cultures of Nmenor begin to come to life, as do the characters
she so skillfully crafts. This is a series I look forward to following
to completion.

Title: Risk Assessment Author: pandemonium_213 Races: Elves ID: 665
Reviewer: Dawn Felagund 2008-10-30 20:56:15
Spoilers!
As the site owner for whom this particular piece of Pandemonium's
hackery was written to amuse, I must admit a personal affection for
this story. However, it is a fine story, particularly to those
familiar with her novella "The Apprentice." All fan fiction, of
course, takes and shapes canon to its purposes, but more than any
other author, Pandemonium's writing also challenges canon in the
process. Although I sometimes think her incapable of writing a story
that is compliant to both canon and the popular fan interpretation of
it (and that is intended as a compliment), nowhere does this show more
than in "Risk Assessment," in which one of her central female
characters, Melamire, challenges the idea of lembas as food with
magical properties. Instead, she proposes an explanation of how lembas
has all of the strange properties it does that is perfectly rational
and, therefore, also deeply upsetting to the story's PoV character.

Gandalf famously accused Saruman in FotR for breaking the color white
to make a rainbow, ["And he that breaks a thing to find out what it is
has left the path of wisdom."] Much Tolkien fan fiction has been
content to follow this ideal, and among many insightful and expansive
stories, few have "broken" the mythology underlying Tolkien's
subcreation and challenged its truth. Pandemonium fills this niche,
and "Risk Assessment" is a story that presents characters and a
culture that are fully realized, soundly written, and certain to leave
readers thinking in new ways about the fundamentals of Middle-earth.

Title: Tales of the Eldandili Author: Alassiel Genres: Drama:
Incomplete ID: 502
Reviewer: Dawn Felagund 2008-10-30 21:10:05
A clever way to blend the myths of Middle-earth with modern life!
Also, this story is chock full of obscure canon goodies. An
interesting concept, I look forward to its completion.

Title: Possessing the greatest powers Author: Tanaqui Times:
Multi-Age: Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 387
Reviewer: Dawn Felagund 2008-10-30 21:16:44
Spoilers!
A beautiful series, each drabble is lovely in its own right, but the
last one--wow! When Frodo's success is revealed in the "death" of
Narya, it is once bittersweet and triumphant. Truly lovely work, Tanaqui!

Title: In This Far Land Author: Encaitariel Races: Elves:
Incomplete ID: 191
Reviewer: Dawn Felagund 2008-10-30 22:14:11
I really enjoyed reading the start of this. I particularly liked the
inclusion of the Laiqwende, who often get forgotten in Silmfic.
Encaitariel sets up a cast of characters that promises a lot of
intrigue in chapters to come.

Title: Dark Light Author: Makamu Races: Villains ID: 585
Reviewer: Dawn Felagund 2008-10-30 22:21:53
Some of my favorite Tolkien stories are those that show the story
through the eyes of the characters disfavored by history. Each
character in his own mind justifies his actions. "Dark Light" is one
such story that shows how even the two most loathed characters in
Tolkien's world are capable of love.

The concluding lines to this piece are moving and very sad at the same
time. Nicely done.

Title: Flickers Author: Meril Times: Multi-Age: Fixed-Length
Ficlets ID: 390
Reviewer: Dawn Felagund 2008-10-31 01:01:21
Each of these ficlets is a glimpse--naught but a few seconds--into the
life of Nerdanel. Yet with unfailing insight into which are the
moments of importance and her impeccable skill in this short form,
Allie forms those few seconds into a work representative of a
lifetime. Superbly done!

Title: A Sleep Over Author: Phyncke Times: First Age and Prior:
House of Finwe ID: 160
Reviewer: Dawn Felagund 2008-10-31 01:09:45
Ah, this was charming! Poor Galadriel! Or, better yet, poor Aredhel!
This humor piece definitely comes with an edge to it.

Msg# 9522

Re: one month left in awards Posted by Marta October 31, 2008 - 0:35:47 Topic ID# 9514
Hi Arthur,

> Thanks for the clarification. This is only my second MEFA so some things are
> still new for me. *grin* Haven't been able to read or review for the last
> month because of my teacher training course, but I finish this week so I can
> spend more time on catching up. I'm only a couple reviews away from my
> reviewing goal so that's not a problem.
>

Hey, no problem, we were all new at some point. (Yep, even me. :-P )
I'm just glad to have yours and every one's participation, as much
time as you have to give.

Marta

Msg# 9523

MEFA Reviews for Friday, October 31, 2008 Posted by annmarwalk October 31, 2008 - 21:28:08 Topic ID# 9523
itle: No Man's Land Author: Branwyn (Lady Branwyn) Genres:
Alternate Universe: Drabbles ID: 726
Reviewer: dkpalaska 2008-10-31 02:17:10
Now this is one AU I'm fervently grateful did not come to pass,
although it does invite deep reflection on the great potential cut
down in every deadly conflict. Very nice dialogue sets the stage
clearly, and places us right with the men making this discovery.

I wonder if the notebook contents might find their way into
influencing some writer to follow the thoughts of their original
author, and what differences would spring from them seeding another
imagination? Definitely a drabble that invites reflection!

Title: The Least of Rings Author: Marta Genres: Alternate
Universe: Drabbles ID: 621
Reviewer: dkpalaska 2008-10-31 02:18:01
A well-told and unique version of how things could have gone when the
Fellowship was broken. It seems to be a favorite point of departure
for AUs (who wouldn't want Sean Bean - oops, I mean Boromir - to
live?) But Marta lays out the scenario in a chillingly clear fashion
as Boromir reflects back on what happened. Excellent word choices make
it clear that the Ring developed a powerful grip on the two
protagonists, and is working its will on the survivor.

I loved the author's take on how Boromir actually achieved the Ring
and why he fought Frodo; they fit well into canon and make the
subsequent speculation on how things turned out from this point very
interesting.

Title: Spoiled Author: Tanaqui Genres: Alternate Universe:
Drabbles ID: 119
Reviewer: dkpalaska 2008-10-31 02:18:22
While I admit that this is the edge of what I could possibly believe
about this character, I acknowledge that under the right conditions
almost anyone could be altered beyond recognition. The descriptions
and PoV are spot-on for a spoiled nobleman, and the final feeling I'm
left with is, "Thank goodness for Tolkien's version!"

Title: Wave-Singer Author: Branwyn (Lady Branwyn) Genres:
Alternate Universe: Drabbles ID: 33
Reviewer: dkpalaska 2008-10-31 02:18:56
This is a nicely done take on one of my favorite Silm characters!
Branwyn chooses an unusual PoV and blends some of our own legends into
one of Tolkien's, with a result that is enjoyable and believable both.
I can just see the old man telling his tale to a group of spellbound
listeners...

Title: Alter/native Author: Tanaqui Genres: Alternate Universe:
Drabbles ID: 478
Reviewer: dkpalaska 2008-10-31 02:22:09
Tanaqui paints a delightful alternate reality, where things start out
just as one would expect from a certain scene contained in the
Appendices of LotR. Soon, however, events go distinctly... awry. Even
after repeated readings, I still find this drabble laugh-out-loud
funny, mostly due to the author's light touch and the subtle
alterations that go along with the, ah, *major* change to canon.

The original quotes are incorporated and modified perfectly, and
Tolkien's formal language is carried well throughout the piece,
blending "truth" and "fiction" seamlessly. The shifts chosen to bring
about this [alter/native] vision are inspired - as is the title.
Excellently done, Tanaqui! I could use more AUs that leave me grinning.

Title: Of Dreams... Author: Avon Races: Men: General Fixed-Length
Ficlets ID: 7
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-31 03:23:39
Spoilers!
Quite a beautiful ficlet here, a crescendo of reflections from
movieverse Aragorn that culminates in the offer of power in the sword
reforged. The slow, lovingly detailed texture of what Aragorn does
dream of instead of power works quite well here, and the appearance of
Anduril, and the choice, and change, that it embodies for Aragorn, is
sharper in contrast.



Title: Now the Green Blade Riseth Author: annmarwalk Genres:
Drama: Ring War Drabbles ID: 37
Reviewer: Raksha the Demon 2008-10-31 04:48:46
Spoilers!
One reason I don't often write hobbits is that I find it hard to
capture their voices, much less their points of view, on paper. Ann
appears to accomplish these feats rather effortlessly in this
absolutely delightful drabble. And she doesn't take on one of the four
questing hobbits, but that tough-and-true provincial gardener, Gaffer
Gamgee himself. Everything rings true as if Tolkien himself wrote the
piece. And it's a novel perspective on a wonderful event in the Shire...





Title: My Shining Stars Author: Oshun Races: Elves: House of
Elrond ID: 371
Reviewer: Robinka 2008-10-31 08:27:07
A very interesting, insightful and believable take on Elrond and what
he might have thought about his paretns, the biological ones that in
truth abandoned him, and the foster ones -- Maedhros and Maglor --
that in fact raised Elrond and his brother. Oshun explores Elrond's
past and gives him a unique, and also ironic voice. Very well done!

Title: Elanor of Westmarch: The Return Author: Baranduin Races:
Hobbits: Family ID: 78
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-31 08:45:25
A wonderfully sensitive and engaging take on Elanor as an old woman;
very nuanced and sympathetic. I had to grin at her crabbiness and was
moved by her holding on to the memories of the past.

I loved her odd "relationship" with the Elvish tower, the powerful
symbolism of it paired with self-awareness and whimsy.

It was a nice touch to blend in various quotes from LotR into the
narrative, both directly and indirectly; especially the last one.

Title: Yule at Great Smials Author: Dreamflower Races: Hobbits:
Family ID: 566
Reviewer: Imhiriel 2008-10-31 08:45:48
The sense of bustling activity before and during the celebrations is
conveyed well, not only in the fast pace of the story and in
describing the preparations, but also in showing the "busyness", the
anxiety, the anticipation and joy. I liked the emphasis on the sense
of community that is so important in Shire society, their love to get
together at the least opportunity with family and friends.

The big cast of characters is handled well; the readers never lose
oversight of who is who, and who are major and minor characters to the
story.

Title: Wife of the Thain Author: LA Knight Genres: Romance: Other
Fixed-Length Ficlets ID: 513
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-31 14:40:38
When I first nominated this it was only a few chapters long, and now
it is slightly over halfway posted, according to its author. A
fascinating look at the courtship of the Took ancestor who allegedly
took a fairy wife, this is presented as a Shire fairy tale--one that
is told in a fascinating way, and with all the savagery of our-world
fairy tales in their original, unexpurgated forms, tales that are not
all sweetness and light.

One feels with the Thain who must labor to finish several impossible
tasks before he can take this beautiful swan princess to wife, and
with the beloved who suffers mightily at the hands of her vicious
father for the sin of having come to love a mortal.

It is a story of many sharp, painful, yet marvelous chapters,
vignettes that are each very short and to the point. There are
references to so many familiar tales, myths, and legends; and her
chapter beginning quotes are from a variety of sources. And her means
of including some familiar characters in this story is also fascinating.

She has recently explained that real life (always a bugaboo to
writers) is getting in the way of finishing the piece; all we can do
is hope that in time real life will calm for her and she will find the
time to complete this and some of her other pieces she's been writing.

Read and enjoy.

Title: Gone Amiss Author: Raksha the Demon Genres: Drama: Ring War
Drabbles ID: 44
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-31 14:53:54
Spoilers!
That moment after Boromir's death is caught to perfection. What did
Aragorn think then as he knelt by the dying warrior's side, besides
how all he'd attempted to accomplish that day had gone amiss--that
fear having been so well described by the Master himself? Was he
remembering a small, determined child and that child's proud father?
The loss that child knew so early in his life of his gentle, loving
mother? Certainly he knows all too well the one he expects to be
required to account to for Boromir's death now, under these circumstances.

Memories and expectations whirl through him, thoughts and regrets, the
pain of loss of what could have been a warm friendship based on
similar tastes and interests lost to suspicions and envy and ambition;
the pain of loss of the chance to tell this one how much admired his
father had been; the pain of loss of the chance to have watched this
one become what he has.

Raksha has indeed caught the grief and concern and compassion and
expressed it succinctly and well. Her writing is always satisfying,
and this is indeed a gem amongst her longer works--perhaps small, but
clear and its facets carefully shaped and polished. As always with
Raksha's works, a delight to read!

Title: Healing the Long Cleeve Author: TopazTook Genres: Longer
Works ID: 133
Reviewer: Larner 2008-10-31 14:58:10
I love Diamond and Pippin stories, and this one did not disappoint. A
wonderful look at their courtship and marriage as the two come to
learn so of one another.

Of the same family origin but separated by distance and old quarrels,
the North-Tooks and those of the Tooklands finally find realliance as
the son of the Thain and the daughter of the North-Tooks learn to
truly love and rejoice in one another.

Some fascinating new thoughts and original insights expressed.