Lady of Silences

Author: Altariel

Nominator: unknown

2004 Award Category: Races: Men: Gondor

Story Type: Other Fiction  ✧  Length: unknown

Rating: PG-13  ✧  Reason for Rating: abusive father (Denethor)

Summary: In Minas Tirith, Finduilas remembers the sea. Features Boromir, Faramir, and Denethor. A very bleak vignette.

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Review scores are not available for 2004.

Reviewed by: Larian Elensar  ✧  Score: N/A

Eww. Though I happen to agree that Denethor is corrupt and dark in ways we don't know. Though I really think it was the growing darkness in Mordor that pushed him over the edge, I guess he could have had the potential to be evil before then too.

Reviewed by: Ainaechoiriel  ✧  Score: N/A

I think I've read this one before as well, but upon reading it again, I can't say I know which son came to her at the end, and yet it doesn't matter so much. She loves both her sons so much, to stay in such misery for them. And so like an abused wife to feel sympathy for the abuser. Altariel got that right.

Reviewed by: Dwimordene  ✧  Score: N/A

Stare long enough into the abyss, and the abyss looks back at you: controlled, compact, and bleaker than a Chicago winter, this is probably the *only* fic that can make me believe that Finduilas committed suicide. Coincidentally, this is also the only author who can make me believe that Denethor can both love his wife and strike her; both strike his sons and be a good ruler. The prose cannot, I think, be faulted; the interpretation is dark, and could easily be mauled by a less expert pen. But in my opinion, this story treads that narrow interpretive path that makes the most of the ambiguities of canonical fact.

Reviewed by: Elanor  ✧  Score: N/A

Beautifully written story. Very dark though. It renders a family situation with Denethor an abusive husband and Finduilas a resigned wife. The violence spills over the second son and mother and son carry their doom in silence. Not what I envision from the Appendices but possible nevertheless. Presented in a very restrained manner by Finduilas herself. Told in a very believable manner which manages to haunt me.

Reviewed by: BelegCuthalion  ✧  Score: N/A

This is the very first story by Altariel I ever read; I mailed her at once and asked for her permission to translate it into german, and my excitement about this tale is as great today as it was then. Finduilas POV and her painful experience in an unfortunate marriage, being abused and violated in a dreadfully silent way, and her first experience of Faramir's physical mistreatment by his father - this is the strong, haunting portrait of a desperate woman, short, bitter and poignant, and one of my All-Time-Favourites by Altariel.