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for To Sleep Perchance to Dream

2/18/2013 c20 8Adrenalin
The beginning is so sweet and cute, it's a harsh contrast with the ending of this chapter. Aurelia and Oren were just perfect making plans and just loving each other and being happy, I felt sorry for them that it was so short.

I understand why Aurelia went with Brynhild, but I think you should develop it a little more. Aurelia should take longer to be convinced of going with her. I liked Brynhild's reaction though, it was logical considering the character and the fact that she only knows that Aurelia and Oren are actually blood related.
2/18/2013 c19 Adrenalin
I liked how you used Aurelia's naive side and her lack of knowledge about everything, including her own body and things like pregnancy. It fits with her upbringing and how Brynhild tried to keep her 'pure'. It also gives us a first hint about how Aurelia will fall.

Though Oren's reaction is great, he sounds too knowledgeable about pregnancy in my opinion. He might have seen some pregnant women in the village, but he's never seen morning sickness, birthing, etc... I'd like to see him a little bit more - baffled, maybe? I'm not sure I'm being very clear here.
2/18/2013 c18 Adrenalin
I liked the dream in the first part of this chapter. You managed to convey the feeling that Aurelia was dreaming immediatly, and your style really matches the atmosphere.

I'm still not convinced by the supernatural aspect of Part Two, but I think you handled it well anyway. And you use it to give a tragic aspect to the story of Aurelia and Oren, with her being warned but still losing Oren, her baby and ultimately her own life, and I liked that.

I also liked it when she found her father's body. I'm a bit surprised she didn't explore and found it before, but hey, it wouldn't make a good scene if she already knew it was here! Still, maybe you should explain why she never goes to the inner keep.
2/18/2013 c11 4lookingwest
Opening - I'm not so sure I believe that Bryn carried Fred to his room - give me more of an image there or - I think it would be better if she had someone else do it or help her and then threatened them not to tell the guards, etc. I'm kind of coming across that problem in my own story - was going to have Kit pass out, but he's like 6 feet tall - no way Char could lift him, haha. I could see Bryn dragging Fred, but she'd have to take breaks and stuff. ANYWAY - Sorry, xD Getting perhaps too technical. At any rate, I want to mention that you did a good job with the intensity of the opening scene between Fred and Bryn. We really dive right into the action with this one.

Character - Bryn really hits the breaking point during this chapter and it really came down hard. I think we get the hints of that when we see it in her last perspective. These chapters have been interesting towards the end because we kind of stop following Bryn, go to Fred, and in this chapter I would argue we're very zoomed out from what Bryn is actually thinking and it's all dependent on the description of action. We're not necessarily in anyone's head. I think being closer to Bryn's perspective would be a pretty scary place to be right now, though. But overall this was an intense chapter and had some very intense dialogue/action in it. I liked that she reached the breaking point. His death was actually unexpected (though I did see it coming from last chapter) and I love that we finally get to see the "retelling" aspect.

Relationships - We finally get this super warped scary relationship between Fred and Bryn and it was friiightening. The whole sexual relationship thing edging necrophilia was really well done. Like I mention above, I think this is really where we see her breaking point happening when she immediately goes for sex. You described things pretty well - I will mention though that we don't get a mention that Fred actually came or anything, which makes me both wonder if nothing happened because he wasn't actually aroused (but then I'm not quite sure how she even had sex with him), sooo it makes me wonder if something will come out of their relationship (aka, a child). I'm sure this mystery might be solved in the next part, as it seems I'm nearing the end of the first one. This part really ended with a horror-esque bang!

Plot - I like the plot so far and this plot twist / break down of Bryn. I'm really curious to see where we pick up in the next part, but I'm guessing we'll probably take a big skip ahead of time. Really interested to see what happens with Oren too - we kind of leave him in a bad place at the end and that makes me nervous to see what kind of person he'll actually turn out to be. I think the plot progression really picked up in the past few chapters and we really see the climax (no pun intended) happening in this chapter. Now we have the falling action left! I think the highlights of this part so far have been the relationship between Bry and Fred and his relationship with his wife too. Anyway, like I've been saying last review and this one, looking forward to more and the part jump!
2/17/2013 c1 11Unweighted Book Author
Good choice of words and imagery as the chapter progresses. Initially, Brynhild is portrayed with no hint of malice, performing innocent tasks like dealing with herbs and plants, and preparing food. However, as we move through the chapter, the imagery gradually increases in menace and danger - 'snake-like ranks', 'inky blackness', 'moth wings' - and accordingly, we begin to realize that Brynhild is not all that she seems to be.

However, I didn't like how there was a disconnect between what's happening with King Frederick and his warriors and what Brynhild was doing. Of course, this will be expanded on later, but I feel that it would have been a better idea to elaborate more on what the King was doing to make the reader care more about those parts of the chapter. Just a minor flaw that I thought I'd bring up.
2/17/2013 c10 4lookingwest
Relationship - I liked that we opened seeing the relationship between Guerin and Fred. I have to say though, Guerin feels a little stock-character in this scene because I don't feel like I knew him well enough at this point to feel bad at his passing. There wasn't a whole lot of showing their relationship until this scene - so maybe more development on their relationship to bring us here would've made me feel more sympathetic for Fred when Guerin dies. That being said, I do like that we see this, like I mentioned, because it depicts Fred's relationship with the rest of his kingdom and his attendants too. I think that's a good thing to start portraying as everything starts to fall around him.

Plot - Oh man, the plot of this chapter is scary! Looks like Bryn's plan has backfired. Might we actually see the death of Fred and perhaps Bryn's suicide following it? That would definitely show us a twist of the original tale for sure. I have to admit - I didn't see him drinking the water coming. Interesting that the poison works so quickly in his system and not the others - but the last paragraph was very well written as far as imagery and one of those poetic moments I mention in the next paragraph!

Writing - The writing in the first few paragraphs of this section didn't feel as smooth as it normally does - there were some unneeded words and I think maybe a comma between 'cursed' and but in the third paragraph could improve some of the flow of that particular sentence. Normally though, I do enjoy your writing, it's traditionalist in that I don't see a lot of risks taken, but it always makes sense and is clear to decipher. I love waiting for the moments when I can see some of your poetic language leaking through the words of the narratives.

Enjoyment - Short! These chapters always feel small - I would've liked more development with setting and perhaps more between Guerin and Fredrick, but I do like that you take the time to mention their prior friendships on the battle fields. At any rate, I think the most enjoyable part of this chapter is seeing the unexpected plot twist happen. It makes me really want to read more and find out what might happen concerning Bryn's idyllic dream and how everything is unraveling. I have to say though - the children are probably okay - but as for their father, it's anyone's guess. Really loved that! Looking forward to continuing!
2/17/2013 c17 8Adrenalin
[but Aurelia could see that he was growing bored]
I think it would be more logical if he was growing annoyed. I mean, he's bound to feel some embarassement talking about this with Aurelia, isn't he?

I liked how Aurelia is so interested in his experience outside, but I think it should be both because of her jealousy and her curiosity. Given that she has had almost no experience outside of the castle, it'd not be suprising she's so excited about knowing every detail.
I also liked how she used the shocking revelation of having seen him masturbating to hold him in place and then get him to tell her everything. It's sort of manipulative, in a subconscious way, and makes me wonder how much she learned from Brynhild.

I liked the way you built-up the intensity of the scene and slowly progressed from a confession into sex. Again, I had a feeling that Aurelia was in charge for most of the action and got Oren to do what she wanted, but at the end it seemed to balance itself somewhat, and I liked the way you handled it.
2/17/2013 c16 Adrenalin
The opening is great, I liked how Aurelia tried to mask her real thoughts by changing the subject and then ended up getting really interested in it. I also liked how Aurelia doesn't really recognize herself in Aurorette but only partly, because most kids aren't a perfect reflection of their parents, and it also served as a reminder that Aurelia is supposed to look more like Frederick.

I think the part in the Mausoleum could do with more descriptions, so that we get a real feeling of the somber and damp atmosphere. I liked how Oren was uncomfortable and ended up retching, it works with him having subconscious memories of burying his mother and the pains attached to it.
2/17/2013 c15 Adrenalin
Brynhild's as harsh as ever with Oren, it's amazing. I liked that she made herself the hero in the story she created for him, taking him in after his mother's death and raising him without asking for anything, which sort of prevents Oren from showing her as the villain she is. I also like that Oren's relationship with Brynhild is balanced with their respective relationships with Aurelia.

I liked the scene where Aurelia watches Oren masturbating while he thinks of her. Still has that slightly creepy factor of incest, but it made an interesting echo to Brynhild watching Frederick and Aurorette having sex.

[His legs were stretched out straight in front of him, bent outward at the knee.]
I didn't understand how they could both be bent and straight?
2/17/2013 c14 Adrenalin
I liked how you described the survival of Aurelia and Brynhild in the winter, without Oren's help. I would have liked more details on it, to illustrate it a bit more, but it was well done anyway.

I'm glad Oren is back, and I like how you started tying it to the tale of Sleeping Beauty by making it a story that got distorted by too many retellings, distance and superstition. And Oren being the one to report it made it nicely ironic.

I'm not sure I liked the bit with the ghost. We've never had any indication before that there might be supernatural elements and I'm surprised.
2/17/2013 c13 Adrenalin
[In truth, Aurelia had stopped listened to her mother's over-told fairytale some time ago. It was always an epic tale of her father, who had died when Aurelia was a baby. They were tales of his fighting in the Manorbriarian wars, and his devotion for Aurelia and her mother. Or the terrible injustice of the plague that took his life too soon. Sometimes Brynhild told her daughter about the disease that ravaged the population here. A strange pandemic that Brynhild alone saved her daughter from, but Brynhild only ever told her daughter that tale on strange nights.]
Too many tales/told here.

I liked how you started directly in the thick of the story here and didn't waste time in descriptions. I think it works really well here, which characters that, though we met them already, you managed to present as new (and they sort of are with all the time that has passed).

I loved Oren's and Aurelia's relationship. It felt very tender, though strained because of Brynhild's presence, and though I'm a bit weirded out by the incest factor, I think you managed to present the premises of their love story perfectly.
2/17/2013 c12 Adrenalin
I liked how you closed the first part with another character's PoV. It helped understand how the rest of the people felt about what happened, the plague and Brynhild's attitude. It also gave hints about how the story was spread abroad and twisted until Brynhild became a witch and Aurelia (then Aurora) a princess trapped in a sleeping curse for a hundred years. But if the story comes from Lisbet, where did the idea of the curse comes from? She never talked with Brynhild about it, did she? The only time we see that idea mentionned is when Brynhild speaks with Patrice, and she dies. Sure, Brynhild mentions sleep at the end of the chapter, but I feel it would need more details.

On another hand, I liked the way you wrote Lisbet and how she followed Brynhild. You did a good job describing her inner turmoil and hesitations, and how badly Brynhild scares her.
2/17/2013 c11 Adrenalin
I think this chapter was a bit rushed too. Frederick dies way too fast compared to other victims of the poison - I think Aurorette took more at least. It feels like only two hours or so passed from the moment he drank the water at Guerin's to the moment he expires. The other victims didn't sound as delirious as he does either.

I "liked" the agony scene though (it's not exactly the right word for what's happening), Brynhild basically raping him as he dies. It's completely sick and twisted, but it fits Brynhild's personality and her insanity. The part where she sleeps next to his cold body and swallows his cold blood is disgusting but again, it works.
2/17/2013 c10 Adrenalin
I liked the way you described Guerin's agony and Frederick's way of nursing him. I wish you had developed it more, it's a great bit of characterization and you rush it a little.

This chapter was too short and fast paced for my taste, I think it deserved more length and description. Why does Frederick immediatly feels light-headed after drinking the poisoned water? From what I understood the poison takes some time to act - Aurorette was even able to have sex with Frederick before showing any symptoms. I would also have liked seeing some introspection on Frederick's part after Guerin's death, some reminiscence of the past.
2/17/2013 c9 Adrenalin
Again, the scene at the beginning showed that Brynhild is having delusions and that's she becoming more and more insane. I liked the way you used her attempt to nurse Aurelia to show that.

I don't know from which origin Patrice's name is, but I always thought it was a male one. In France it is, at least.

I'm surprised Brynhild didn't try to stop the man from stealing things from the castle. As mad as she is, she seems very focused on Frederick and all things attached to him, and in the future chapters she keeps going on and on about his grandeur and all... Shouldn't she be more attached to the exterior signs of that grandeur? Especially since they actually belong to Frederick, and she seems very jealous of everything attached to him.
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