Yule at Great Smials

Author: Dreamflower

Nominator: Pearl Took

2008 Award Category: Races: Hobbits: Family - Third Place

Story Type: Story  ✧  Length: Short Story

Rating: General  ✧  Reason for Rating: N/A

Summary: When the cat's away...Lalia and Ferumbras are away from the Great Smials this year at Yule, and Tooks and their relations descend en masse--including Bilbo, Frodo, and their guest, Gandalf!

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Reviewed by: Pearl Took  ✧  Score: 7

Oh dear, this is another story that was written from a request of mine! Dreamflower wrote a magical tale about a very special Yule celebration at Great Smials. Lalia has been pulled away from the Smials to attend an important wedding, so while the old cat is away, the happy Took mice will play. Because of her absence, hobbits who haven't been to the Smials for Yule in ages have decided to be there. Bilbo, Frodo, Merry and his parents and many, many others - including Gandalf the Wizard. Young five year old Pippin Took will be there as well. Great fun is had by all. Pippin gets into mischief, and meets Gandalf for the very first time - he decides quite quickly that he likes the wizard and the wizard decides he likes the little Took. Dreamflower wrote some lovely songs for this story as well, which truly do round it out very nicely. I love the warmth and humor in it as well. It is a jolly, warm, fun, happy Yule Story. Thank you so much, Dreamflower!

Reviewed by: Larner  ✧  Score: 6

Somehow I managed to miss reading this when it was first posted, and I am sorry this was so, but glad to have such good reason to read it now! "When the cat's away, the mice will play," and so it proves as Lalia absents herself from Yule at the Great Smials, for this is the perfect situation for all the Tooks and their many relatives of other names who wish to enjoy the festivities together. The challenge set was met well, and we see Gandalf meeting Pippin for the first time in Dreamflower's universe. Here's our Took lad in all his exuberance, and all rejoicing to see him survive to face another year. Characterizations are delightful as always, we get a wonderful glimpse at Gandalf's unusual smokerings, and we even get glimpses of a side of Gandalf seldom shown. As warming as a Yule bonfire!

Reviewed by: Virtuella  ✧  Score: 5

I can only take Pippin-fluff in very small doses, but hey, this one went down like a spoonful of sugar! Very funny how Pippin always gets into trouble even at that age. One has to feel sorry for the couple that are getting married - all the unpleasant people are off to attend their wedding! I was very amused at Merry's inspired definition of fireworks! And he gives Estella his carrots! I bet that's how it all started... ;-) And the last sentences was causing me a giggle-fit! I don't quite understand how the weather could be "cold, but mild", and I have an inkling that you meant to say "Cold, but dry".

Reviewed by: Imhiriel  ✧  Score: 4

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.

Reviewed by: Cathleen  ✧  Score: 4

Pearl Took asked for a story in which there were fireworks at the Great Smials, a young Pippin and Gandalf in attendance, and I know that Dreamflower had a bit of fun finding a way to make it all work! A lovely, sweet, and highly entertaining tale of merry-making in the Shire during Yuletime, and involving some of my most favourite characters. Thank you Dreamflower!

Reviewed by: NeumeIndil  ✧  Score: 3

The last line makes this story, though I love what you've done with Gandalf and the relationship between the 3 cousins between the beginning and the end. Great fun to read, with some nice hints about what is to come in a few more dozen years. Bravo.

Reviewed by: nancylea  ✧  Score: 1

please entertain us with more "dreary" please, please!!!!!!!!!!!!!