Nominator: Raksha the Demon
2010 Award Category: Times: First Age and Prior
Story Type: Story ✧ Length: Short Story
Rating: Teen ✧ Reason for Rating: Some violence, implied sex, brief use of profanity
Summary: Just what made Lúthien go overboard for an unwashed mortal anyway? The world's only half-Elf half-Maia gives her side of the story.
Reviewed by: Raksha the Demon ✧ Score: 10
Luthien Tinuviel is not the easiest subject for a Tolkien fanfiction writer. As Tolkien wrote her, she was not only the most beautiful woman ever born in Middle-earth, but one of the most powerful as well. All that perfection can be rather daunting. But, if one focusses on the idea that Luthien seemed quite happy to get away from the protection of a hyper-protective father and serenely powerful mommy and eventually set up housekeeping with a scruffy mortal on an island, living as a mortal and raising a Peredhel, then one can get into this central myth of Tolkien's legendarium in a new and refreshing way, especially if one also goes for a tongue-in-cheek approach. At least, that's what Clotho does; and it works quite well. Her Luthien is a sheltered First Age Valley Girl (thankfully with a larger vocabulary than the stereotype) yearning to escape deadly-dull Doriath but hemmed in by Thingol's canon over-protectiveness. And then of course she happens upon a certain exhausted yet attractively haggard mortal outlaw and the rest is history, but told in a spritely, humorous fashion. I really liked it that Clotho has Luthien not fall madly in love with Beren at first sight, but has her go after her mortal suitor out of loyalty as well as a certain attraction. In this story, Luthien's love for Beren deepens as they face adversity together and Luthien finds, and rejoices in, her own power and ability to take care of herself, after some woodcraft tutorials from Beren. The comic highlight, other than Luthien's comments about poor Daeron, is the Luthien/Huan/Sauron confrontation. I'm thinking that Clotho's Luthien could have made quite a career as a Middle-earth sports reporter, had such an occupation been available. Clotho's breezy and intelligent style makes for easy reading. Luthien's perserverence and growth are apparent even when written with humor. Highly recommended!
Reviewed by: obsidianj ✧ Score: 5
This story is hilarious. It is the old story, just tell young people "No" and they will all the more try to get what they want. Luthien as a spoiled elven princess in a boring, very safe environment with all kinds of restrictions chafes at the cage her parents set up for her. At the smell of an adventure, she goes for it. It was not quite what she wanted, but once she started she went all out. Her parents don't come across as the smartest parents for her. They dote on her, but they don't understand how her mind works. The description of her father is quite funny if it wouldn't be so sad.
Reviewed by: Larner ✧ Score: 5
Well, I must say that this is NOT just another glorious tale of beauty and valor. The Luthien we meet here is earthy, very modern in feel, and is one we can truly relate to in many ways. Her descriptions of life in her parents' realm and its attendant boredom rings true, as does her rolling-of-the-eyes evaluation of her father's awareness of what she might have been doing and his attempts to restrain her once she made up her mind. Definitely a tale that does NOT sound as if Tolkien wrote it, although the Master's details are all there. A story I enjoyed in spite of myself, and one that is likely to raise a few eyebrows and some chuckles from most readers.
Reviewed by: Anna Wing ✧ Score: 3
An amusing bit of fluff, that manages to make some serious points as well. Despite Luthien's characterisations of herself as useless, pampered and )implicitly) rather shallow, it's quite clear that her main problem is not knowing how competent she really is, in a rather astonishingly wide range of skills, as well as how deep of heart.
Reviewed by: Elfique ✧ Score: 2
A very enjoyable and refreshing perspective on Luthien! The characterisations were my favourite part of this; a wonderful mix of canon and comedy!
Reviewed by: Ellynn ✧ Score: 1
Lovely, funny, interesting story with excellent humor!