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8/5/2013 c1 deadaccount2019
- Opening
I would have to say this is a case where setting description was used effectively for an opening. You didn't go overboard with it, and pairing it with Marek's apparent frustration with the torch really hit home. What really hooked me, however, were the nymphlings. I wouldn't expect more than mild mischief from such creatures, so when I realized you were giving them a dark twist I just had to keep reading.

- Dialogue
For the most part, I really enjoyed the dialogue. The voices seem to suit each character (Marek an old and serious leader, Jascha a young and potential successor to chieftan/leader/etc.). I especially loved Jascha's roundabout (but polite) way of saying "Shut up before you jinx us." (Or at least, that's how I interpretted it.)

- Pace
I'd have to say I enjoyed the pace of the chapter. The first part moves at a slightly slower pace, giving the feeling of the calm before the storm, and then when Old Ben suddenly charges you can feel everything turning chaotic. The chaos lasts along enough for the reader to get the feeling of a moment's hope, only to be dashed by the realization that they have to get out asap. Overall, I'd say you pulled it off quite effectively.

- Writing
In the big picture I felt the writing was appropriate and done well. I especially love that you refer to dragon coupling as pair-bonding. This felt very natural and almost endearing. That being said, there were a couple of smaller details (perhaps nit-picky) that caught my eye.

The first is the name "Old Ben". After being exposed to a fantasy setting and like names, this particular name kind of felt like the proverbial sore thumb.

Another thing would be the considerable lack of dragon references. Granted, the tribe names are mentioned, but I didn't really get any dragon vibe, and after the failed battle with the nymphlings it kind of leaves the reader what any of it (besides Jascha's request) has to do with the rest of the story.

The last note would be how the dragon tribes' introduction is handled. Jascha seems to have an infamous Legoloas-Exposition moment. It comes off silly and a bit condescending that this young man is explaining to his elder what the dragon tribes' names mean.

- Spelling Grammar
It could do with a touch of polishing for some punctuation and long-winded sentences, and there was one occassion I can think of where vocab needs a quick fix (the use of "parameter" instead of "perimeter" toward the end). Otherwise the chapter is in pretty good shape.
8/1/2013 c12 5Whirlymerle
I love what you did with Wyll and his dreams in this chapter. The imagery is fantastic and the writing worked well in giving the scene a dreamy, hazy quality. My favorite image was probably the flowers, “Their buds in heavy bloom, both fertile and frightening.” Which seemed to parallel Wyll really well: full of something promising, very much a mystery and in that way, is capable of terrifying the village

One thing I’m wondering about is how big the village is if it is to have merchants. I thought the village is a self contained unit, so I was confused why merchants were necessary to go between farmers and people who don’t have access to farmers.
8/1/2013 c11 Whirlymerle
[Taja knew he was speaking of their flight. That instinct to take to the skies that had always been denied to them] I didn’t like the way the second sentence was worded, because above, you already talk about how Taja has “some ancient memory of flight that had been denied to her” so the near repetition/explanation sounded a tiny bit redundant.

I really like the conversation and interaction between Jascha and Taja. It was an incredibly sweet moment. I think, the fact that the women tended to die in childbirth worked really well here, because Jascha’s reluctance to go further with Taja showcased this really thoughtful, tender side of him that we’ve only glimpsed in the beginning.

The way you mention stars in this chapter got me thinking that part of the reason Taja is attracted to Wyll is because she’s very adventurous and headstrong and he’s so different. Jascha asks her to think of stars because that’s what all these dragons who’re no longer dragons long to know, but Wyll shows Taja that there’s a whole world out there, besides just flying, so in that way, I can totally see her desiring that part of him. But these last two chapters, I’ve definitely gotten pro Jascha.
8/1/2013 c10 Whirlymerle
[Although Linza had always been the older sister she had often times looked to Taja as a leader, but now she openly showed signs of being more mature than Linza.] the “but” read a little jarringly, because the second clause agrees more than contrasts with the first, I think.

[the slight breeze made the forward stands dance and itch across her face] since you’re talking about hair, do you mean “strands”?

I really like the note you ended on, because it's an incredibly well put metaphor. In these past couple of chapters, I'm getting the sense that things are about to change, so "seasons" was great!

I’m really intrigued by the social system you’ve set up. The way Marek gives his family for Jascha to take care of, then moves out, it seems like the houses belong to the females, but it is the males who come and go that are the leaders/heads? Corrine speaks with certain authority, and I wonder if this is because she's probably most aware of dragon customs, which sounds like a pure matriarchy. I wonder if it’s for practical reasons, since human males are bigger, and thus more physically able to defend themselves/others, while dragons might be bigger as females (since most female lizards are)?
8/1/2013 c9 Whirlymerle
[without fear of the Nyphlings] nymphling spelling?

I really enjoyed this chapter and its focus on Jascha. I think this chapter gives him back some of the sympathy/likeability that he had when he was introduced. Even though Wyll seemed to be completely ignorant of the effect of his song on the village, it also makes Jascha’s distrust of him more understandable, I feel.

I thought it was interesting to have Jascha observe how Audra tries to seduce Wyll, and Wyll parrying her advances. I wonder what sort of effect that might have on Jascha’s opinion of him. I love the ending, where Jascha spits out fire. It seems like, with Wyll’s arrival, things that were once held together are now tearing at the seams.
7/30/2013 c2 7Vladvonbounce
I really like the way you introduced the background history as a story. it didn't feel like you were just dumping information on the reader. It's interesting having this sort of forced marriage yet Jascha seems to be a really nice guy who cares very deeply about her. It's a bit sad that their father doesn't really seem to appreciate them. I also quite like the sisterly relationship between Linza and taja and how you have described them as being rather different.

"I'll bet as a dragon Avviḙa never had to prepare supper for anyone…" Awesome line. Wish I could use this at home.

""There now," she sang against Linza's cheek. "Come back little one." if Taja is the younger girl why does she refer to her sister as little one? I didn't really get a sense of what age Linza and Taja are meant to be? The way you write them they sound quite young but on the other hand Taja is old enough to get married? Also is there more wrong with Linza than just an occasional (epileptic?) fit? Marek seems pretty hard on her.
7/30/2013 c1 3handna95
This is such a sweet story! I love Jascha and Marek, and all of the girls. You've created such a unique relationship between all of them that just makes you want to read more to understand what they're like.

Your opening sentence was extremely good. "The air was so cold it seemed to Marek that a witch had cackled her frigid breath across the landscape of the village." It hinted that there was not only a witch, but also that witches had extreme powers in this world. I was curious about how the witch would play a role in the story and how it would affect the characters.

The nymphlings were also a nice touch of danger. I'm curious as to why they can't go past the border and why the men want to kill them so much. I'm sure that will be explained once I read more, but that is another question that would cause the reader to keep scrolling.

'Linza hesitated only a moment before answering. "The Sayb's were the silverspines— they were the most fearsome. That's one," Linza held the last syllable of the word 'one' longer than was necessary to give her more time to remember the other names. "Then there were the Miam—always blue, they could change their skin to match the bright blue of the day sky or the dark blue of the night sky." She continued with more certainly, "and then our tribe the Irisa—the strongest and wisest, usually red of color."'

That paragraph was so well placed, it's amazing. Not only did you explain what the different tribes were, you integrated them into the story flawlessly. I wasn't jolted by the sudden information, but felt like I was being told along with the grandmother.

Jascha adds a nice touch of naivety and hope to the story. He's worried about having a wife while Marek is worried about the dangerous nymphlings. That touch of youth really helps to buoy the story.

The only minor thing that I would change would be removing "the legend of the Sheyla Meydala" from your summary. You explained it very well in the first chapter, but flipping through summaries, a reader might not understand what that is. Once again, that is a super minor detail. Think of it as "Tomato/Tomatoe".

Anyways, you've done a really nice job with this piece so far and I enjoyed it a lot. Hope all is well and happy writing!
7/30/2013 c4 4Thayet Serenity
I like how each character has different strengths and weaknesses. Linza seems interesting. I dislike how hard to follow this is. I'm still not sure about the plot.
7/30/2013 c3 Thayet Serenity
I like how each character is intriguing and captivates you. I dislike the constant switching of narrators.
7/30/2013 c2 Thayet Serenity
I like how the plot is unfolding now. However, it's still confusing bit hopefully everything clears up soon.
7/30/2013 c1 Thayet Serenity
I like how each character has a unique voice already. That's something difficult to pull off this early and you nailed it. I don't like how the start gives little indication of what the plot is.
7/30/2013 c4 148DianaLapin
Ah so now wyll comes in the story. We hear from Linza's point of view and how her condition is different from others of the tribe. I don't have any criticisms just a suggestion for you to make the flashback in italics.
I enjoyed the way you've fleshed out Linza and Taja, the way you gave them memories, hopes, dreams and personalities.

-note-
i apologize I found the review written but not posted and when i came back from an errand, i saw the messages. forgive me. i owe you this one
7/30/2013 c5 DianaLapin
I am confused. Earlier in chapter three you said wyll had no past, no idea of how he came to be, and now he's a troubadour? is this a deception or are those talents he actually discovered he has? Either way the reactions are in keeping with the characters, and believable. Still, the deliberate contradiction troubles me, and I feel it would be better if you mentioned something of that nature in chapter three
7/30/2013 c3 DianaLapin
I have one slight issue with the name wyll. I know its pronounced will but I feel the changed spelling is a bit much. I feel that if you wanted to publish this your editor would say the same thing as they are reputed to be a bit orthodox with names. But I am intrigued as to how wyll plays into the story. I like the imagery of the location, the graveyard and all the little clues he has to his identity. He is a compelling mystery.
7/29/2013 c2 DianaLapin
Okay maybe not romance I was thinking of. Her father tells her to marry Jascha to beget heirs, and leaves her grandmother to enforce it? Harsh but I can see it I suppose. Is Linza supposed to be an epileptic? It's fascinating the conflict that enfolds. Dragons forced into human forms are weakening within them but can be saved by the subject of a prophecy (and I suspect Taja is her). That's intriguing. But how is Corinne alive if she has survived childbirth and lived to an advanced age? I feel there's a discrepancy there that has to be resolved. Does she have a condition too? Is she very fragile?
But I have to say Jascha's last line is very sweet. It makes me think he wants the best for her, regardless of what he wants.
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