Middle-Earth Fanfiction Awards

Waking Thoughts

Author: Larner
Nominator: Starlight
2011 Award Category: Character Study: General

Story Type: Story : Length: Short Story
Rating: General -- Reason for Rating: N/A
Summary: Gandalf contemplates how Frodo Baggins developed his ability to communicate mind-to-mind.


Reviewed by: cairistiona -- Score: 6

A very interesting ficlet exploring how Frodo might have come by osanwë and the Ring's role in that development. The story is strongest during the recounting of Frodo's arrival in Rivendell, when all the characters are front and center in dialogue and action, but the remainder, a mostly expository narration of memories and speculation on the same from Gandalf's point of view is compelling in its own way. The idea of Gandalf actively working through osanwë to assist Frodo during his most difficult times is fascinating and something I hadn't really given much thought. And seeing Gandalf reasoning out "why did all this happen the way it did" makes this well worth the read!

Reviewed by: Virtuella -- Score: 6

Dear Larner, I enjoyed this insightful reflection about Frodo’s powers of the mind. For all that I read Lord of the Rinds several times, I never gave much thought to how exactly the Ring interacted with people, until I began to read fanfiction. I like the points you are raising in this story, the details you are adding to flesh out the original. For example, the idea that Frodo’s companions were chosen not only with a view to helping him on the way, but also to distract the attention of the Ring and split it between them. That made a lot of sense to me. Likewise the idea that Gandalf, on encountering the Balrog, thought ahead and realised that if he did not face it now, he might have to face two instead of one Maia at the final battle. This story has given me many new thoughts and ideas.

Reviewed by: Darkover -- Score: 4

A remarkably-plotted story, written mostly from Gandalf's perspective, about the effects the Ring had on Frodo. Not all those effects were negative; Frodo became more sensitive, and his ability to feel and read the emotions and thoughts of others are tantamount to the ability of the most powerful of Elves. The author also suggests such sensitivity made Frodo unable to resume an ordinary life in the Shire, and thus it was no coincidence that he had to journey with the Elves for healing.

Reviewed by: Dreamflower -- Score: 4

The Ring in Larner's universe, is not only an evil token of power seeking to subvert those who come into its sphere, but it is also a catalyst for other more benign things which it (and its Master and Maker) would never have intended, wakening latent strengths and abilities in its bearer, things which make him stronger and more perceptive. This story has Gandalf pondering these things-- at first in Rivendell, and later at the end of the Quest.

Reviewed by: Antane -- Score: 4

A special story about a special and terribly violated hobbit, but even here good comes out of evil. It gives such admiration for Frodo to have endured such a horrific struggle which broke him - I will not say at the end for it was not his end - and also to have the courage, will and hope to gather the shattered pieces back together and painfully, slowly and carefully build a new self integrated with the old so he is better than he ever was better, better for having been broken and survived to live again. Hope that makes sense!

Reviewed by: Linda Hoyland -- Score: 4

I enjoyed this look into Gandalf's thoughts as he watches over Frodo very much. The old wizard reflects on how he has watched over Frodo on several occasions now, the effect of the Ring upon him and how he can read Frodo's thoughts. I especially enjoyed the mention that Aragorn helped Elrond to remove the shard of the Nazgul weapon as that seems very plausible to me. A lovely glimpse of a special friendship.