Middle-Earth Fanfiction Awards

Survival of the Fittest

Author: Eiranae
Nominator: Alassante
2009 Award Category: Races: Other Beings

Story Type: Story : Length: Ficlet
Rating: Teen -- Reason for Rating: War-time violence.
Summary: When all the world is crumbling around us, what pushes us forward? What makes us take that next step? What gives us the will to survive?

Reviewed by: Thundera Tiger -- Score: 7

This was some very adept writing from a difficult viewpoint. The horses of Rohan, and in particular Firefoot, are drawn as sophisticated, loyal creatures who love their riders and think in metaphors of the herd. And that was probably my favorite part about this story. Despite the obvious intelligence and understanding of the horses, they are still very much horses. Their concern is for the herd and the colts and ensuring the survival of the group. They don't think as men think, from referring to Eowyn as a "[filly]" to attempting to warn Theoden of the danger "[concealed within his own stables]." Firefoot's efforts to keep Eomer alive during his terrible wrath were wonderfully depicted, and I like the idea of being joined by the Dol Amroth herd. There were some wonderful turns of phrase throughout the story. In particular, I loved the wording of Eomer's "[loosely girded calm]." An elegant story with some surprising revelations about the warriors beneath the warriors.

Reviewed by: Lady Bluejay -- Score: 5

A wonderful unique pov. Great to see the battle portrayed from another perspective. As I have said before when I reviewed this on OSA - I enjoyed all of it, but loved this bit - 'Snowmane’s rider fought valiantly and will be remembered almost as fondly as the stallion that bore him.' There are other gems as well, and especially touching that Frirefoot wishes the horses could communicate with their riders to save a lot of grief. Good old Firefoot - what would we do without him! He is such a special character and you have given him a noble voice that fits well with how we would expect him to be. Well done. LBJ

Reviewed by: Larner -- Score: 4

Of the apparent losses of the Battle of the Pelennor, for Eomer to have come to believe he had lost not only the uncle who'd been as a father to him since his childhood but his sister as well has to be one of the most traumatic. To see that tale told from THIS unique point of view enhances the poignancy of the grief felt by the unexpected heir to Theoden. Very nicely done. The consistency with which the POV is presented is particularly well done. Definitely a story to savor. Do read and enjoy!

Reviewed by: SĂșlriel -- Score: 4

I especially love this point of view and so am especially disappointed when it's not well down - and of course - especially delighted to see works such as this one that nail the perspective so well and so deeply in character. The thoughts are not human, but they are real and understandable and 'identifiable-with', and so the reader is drawn completely into the characters thoughts, his fear and love and anger - and his hope. Well done, Eiranae, I'm so glad you participated in this challenge.

Reviewed by: Alassante -- Score: 3

Wonderful tale told from an interesting point of view. I always enjoy it when a writer takes a different approach to the well known tale. And this was beautifully written by Eira. Well done!

Reviewed by: NeumeIndil -- Score: 3

This was such a great point of view from which to see that battle. You do a very good job of presenting the human in a way that most of us would not see him. I particularly liked how you used horse terms and knowledge to explain the situation, ie: [protect the herd] etc. In my mind, it plays up the similarities between us and the four-legged victims of the War of the Ring. Very well done.

Reviewed by: Nancy Brooke -- Score: 3

It is always hard to put words into the head of the non-human character without making them sound human, but the author does a great job here NOT anthropormorphizing but creating a unique character well imagined.

Reviewed by: samwise_gamgee_fan -- Score: 3

I am glad I stumbled upon this little gem. It is the first I have ever read of its kind and, as another reviewer pointed out, the consistency and relevancy of the POV adopted are particuarly striking. Great job!!

Reviewed by: Robinka -- Score: 2

An amazing idea for the point of view and a remarkable plunge into the thoughts of a war horse. Skilfully done and very thoughtful!

Reviewed by: nancylea57 -- Score: 1

amusing perspective i hope that they think nearly so well of us.