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Reviewer: Mia Oria Signed [Report This]
Date: 19/11/09 - 05:19 pm Title: Chapter 19: Siege

NICE!!!! MORE MORE MORE!!!! I FINALLY CAUGHT UP!!!

Reviewer: Naneth Signed [Report This]
Date: 03/11/09 - 04:15 am Title: Chapter 19: Siege

So glad you've updated! Again, well done, vividly painted scene. It helps that you're skilled with Tolkienien language, grammatical style, phrases... the spell the story casts is stronger for it. While I miss the departure from the idyllic days of Legolas and Calahdra exploring new feelings, I sense you will weave this battle and darkness into opportunity for them to love and know each other more deeply. Such is life in tumultuous Middle-earth!

Great first line-- The madness of war was born at once.
Draws your readers right in: no bones about it, this is going to be one dark and painful ride ...
Other strong lines stand out:
"One stair from the greatest fight of my life"-- good storyteller's tone here, and counting down the stairs revs the tension up.
"the minutes of my life began to race in a way that skewered time into a sort of macabre waltz": brilliant description of an almost indescribable feeling, of a patter of hope-fear-despair-hope-anguish held in check, forced waiting to hear of her love... creepily effective!
I was confused by this line: "guffawed with honor," When one feels a great honor being done to them wouldn't it be more natural to cry in release of the intensity? But, I love the gesture and the scene, and the symbolism of the naming. That one still resonates...
I can't wait to see what happens next as they ride out.

You seem to have yet another gift for writing action suspense-- I was definitely clenching a fist as one relentless scene stampeded into another. That's hard to maintain, and you've figured out how. Also I thought you kept a good balance between violence and psychological reaction.What a chapter!

& On the introspective side, when Calahdra has a chance for that, she's going to have a hard time with her conscience after using her dark mind power, isn't she. That's what makes her an interesting character. I imagine she'll be especially reluctant to tell Legolas. Hmm .......

Feel free to ask me pre-posting questions if you ever have them... while I don't have the time to commit to be a full-on beta reader, I can offer my two cents as I'm inspired. Would love to support your efforts here; This is a work of great worth, don't doubt it.
Looking forward to more soon. Nice going.

Author's Response: Thanks for the great review. I'm glad you enjoyed those lines you mentioned (the one about the macabre waltz is one of my personal favorites, if I do say so my self). And I'll be sure to send along any questions I have for you. thanks!-whisper

Reviewer: Mia Oria Signed [Report This]
Date: 29/10/09 - 01:18 am Title: Chapter 16: Rendition

Ah... so some of the backstory of everyone's favorite elf is revealed!

Reviewer: Mia Oria Signed [Report This]
Date: 29/10/09 - 01:05 am Title: Chapter 15: Play

Whoa... It's great.

Reviewer: Reaveth Signed [Report This]
Date: 23/10/09 - 08:43 pm Title: Preface

One word:
Beatiful.
Wonderfully written, beautiful descriptions, absolutely awe-inspiring!!

Author's Response: Thank you much! -Whisper

Reviewer: Naneth Signed [Report This]
Date: 02/10/09 - 10:55 pm Title: Chapter 18: Silence

This story just gets better and better. This is a long review – I got to read 16 chapters at once and have a lot to say! I’ll keep reviewing in the future, and yes, I’ll restrain myself from now on. So bear with me…
The most important thing: it sings! Your tale is a living, breathing success. You have achieved the kind of magic that has readers gripping their chairs for dear life as the plot cascades forward, bringing us into… well, your Middle-earth.
You write really well about one of the most difficult topics for many writers (our sexuality) because it is one of the most private aspects of our lives as human beings… the sensuality and chemistry between your main characters is totally authentic and accessible, riveting. It burns with incredible heat that will not be denied. I for one will admit to a rapidly beating heart at times throughout the story.
One thing I’d caution you on: I’ve read a couple stories (and ultimately stop reading them because they become annoying) in which the strategy seems to be to avoid an actual consummation of the relationship indefinitely, while the two characters are desperately desiring it. You can do that only for so long before it loses its piquancy and becomes a gimmick … no worries, you are not at that point yet, and you’ve done a great job of maintaining suspense realistically and letting them progress small increments at a time –it’s very effective at this point—I could weep with anticipation! Just trust your characters to figure it out for the sake of the love they bear each other. The first love scene between a couple is not necessarily the end of the story of chemistry, giddiness, anticipation, romance and the give-and-take dance of feelings and quarrels and reconciliations.
Side note, I don’t think you need to warn readers about a chapter having too much sensuality (unless it falls under the ‘graphic sex’ category): at this point I think you have a loyal fan following precisely because of the deeply sensual territory you have led your characters into, and the eloquent way you paint them for us on this journey, showing their inner experience with such depth. I also don’t think you need to maintain a PG-13 rating for every chapter if the story your heart wants to tell calls you outside those boundaries. (This may be a question for the webmistress). People offended by the direction your tale is going would have dropped out long ago, and that’s fine—they are not your tribe. You can’t please everyone.
Related, you write love and tenderness very well too – sweet and deep, and skillfully interwoven with the physical desire. Although you have them falling for each other very fast, it rings true and works for them. It’s hard to keep interested in stories where the author has not demonstrated WHY the characters even like each other, beyond physical attraction. In your fabulous tale however, it is brilliantly apparent in every exchange what they see in each other. It’s quite a compelling symphony you’ve set in motion and I’m hooked for the long term.
Your characters are so very lifelike, complex, and ultimately lovable, which is the most important thing: as I heard one author say at a writer’s conference I attended, “your hero can be battling giant alien ants from outer space, while hanging off a cliff by one hand, but if you haven’t built a believable character that we can sympathize with, NO ONE CARES”. Take pride -- you have avoided that particular downfall of amateur writing with impressive skill.
As for adding in more about other characters, especially the fellowship, good choice there --it really does enrich the story. Especially because it rounds out Legolas; it would be a little hard to reconcile how such an honor-bound, devoted friend-of-Aragorn, etc. completely forsakes time w/ his companions even if he is falling in love. Bringing others in more fully, through their interactions with the main two, gives you opportunity to explore new facets and motivations of your lovebirds & makes the whole thing flow amazingly well! Also brings the flavor of Middle-earth in more fully. Nice touch.
Your chapter titles are spare, poetic, and right on.
There are a few small technical tricks of the trade I can share with you that would make your writing even stronger than it already is:
• Try not to use the same word/ phrase twice in a paragraph if possible— like “his eyes”. The reader is pulled out of the story if that happens too much.
• Proofread because spellcheck won’t catch this -- homonyms like too and to, there and their – to make sure you’re using the right word (I always have to check my own work for this particular issue)
• Always use a direct verb when possible; it avoids the passive language that plagues much writing (this is not a huge problem for you; your language is far from passive and you make good use of powerful verbs in your writing… but since we all get caught by it sometimes, especially when we’re lost in the thick of writing an amazingly cool story, I just thought I’d throw it out there for your awareness). Having people do things, rather than describing things happening to them, makes for a more powerful sentence. Here’s an example: “Theoden looked at me for a while, his eyes looking quite sad, I thought.” Strengthen with a verb like “…his shadowed eyes piercing mine.”
Most recent feedback: as the battle for Rohan heats up, you’re doing a wonderful job of showing the cycle of fear to rising courage to battle preparedness. So much more effective than just plunging into swinging swords and gore. The thing that makes it interesting after all, is the psychology going on inside people who are about to participate in a level of violence they’d never consider on an everyday basis. Their world is in the balance and both fear and bravery are at extraordinary intensities—you’ve imagined quite powerfully for us what must be going on in your characters’ minds…
You create this reality so masterfully, I felt I could breathe with, touch, smell, hear each character in every chapter you’ve written so far. I could still smell the smoke of the campfires and see the lovely hair spread intertwined upon the pillows, hear the ring of swords and shiver at the undercurrents passing silently between eyes, held captive in this world long after I stopped reading…
Please, keep up the fantastic work!

Author's Response: Thank you, as always Naneth, for your review. Your advice and praise is exactly what I'm looking for! I certainly hope to hear more from you as the story progresses. -Whisper

Reviewer: Naneth Signed [Report This]
Date: 24/09/09 - 01:41 pm Title: Chapter 16: Rendition

Whisper, this is far and away the best romantic fan fiction I've yet read!
Your story, its sweetness, its profound sensuality, takes my breath away.

Calahdra and Legolas have some very intense chemistry ( I think due to the way you so skillfully interweave physical passion with love, as well as the many other facets of human experience, so that they seem real to us, rather than cardboard characters invented to write a love scene), and it fairly ignites the screen. I'm cheering them on.
Your dialogue is authentic and true to the characters and their individuality, not an easy thing to do. Further, you make it work for you, as in the classic writing rule 'show don't tell'-- in that your characters reveal themselves, and the story's details, to us in a natural and sense-rich way, rather than you downloading huge descriptive paragraphs to tell us backstory.

Lucky me, I discovered your story only recently with 16 chapters to read at once, and I did nothing else for a day and a half, I was so riveted. I'm sure you have many other readers out there who were likewise under your spell -hint, hint people-- reviews mean a lot to writers. If this story moved you as well, please let Whisper know.

I'm loving this! I hope you continue working on this one for many chapters to come-- it has rare magic to it. Thank you.
While there may be a few rough spots, they don't stand out, and time will smooth those as you continue on this path.
You have a gift for language, and I'm so grateful you found the courage to share it online. Brava! Keep going...

Author's Response: You have no idea how much your thoughtful and kind review means to me. Messages like yours really push me forward, and they certainly make my day. And I'd like to commend you in your "hint hint, nudge nudge" to the other readers. Reviews are essential to a story's development. Like you said, there are rough spots, and no matter how many times I go back and try to smooth things over, I'll always miss something. With out the support and vocalization of my readers, I can never achieve anything close to perfection. So please, everyone, take Naneth's advice and drop me a review, even if it's only a word or two long! Once again, I am very glad that you enjoy my work so thoroughly and I hope that as the story progresses, I don't dissapoint! -Whisper

Author's Response: You have no idea how much your thoughtful and kind review means to me. Messages like yours really push me forward, and they certainly make my day. And I'd like to commend you in your "hint hint, nudge nudge" to the other readers. Reviews are essential to a story's development. Like you said, there are rough spots, and no matter how many times I go back and try to smooth things over, I'll always miss something. With out the support and vocalization of my readers, I can never achieve anything close to perfection. So please, everyone, take Naneth's advice and drop me a review, even if it's only a word or two long! Once again, I am very glad that you enjoy my work so thoroughly and I hope that as the story progresses, I don't dissapoint! -Whisper

Reviewer: regaliaria Anonymous [Report This]
Date: 18/09/09 - 01:02 am Title: Preface

This is a good story thus far! This chp tho was very beautiful as two lovers understand each others needs and the respect that they hold for each other, even that close. She is lucky to have Legolas in her life. Well thats how I see it. Keep it going.

Author's Response: That's exactly how I see it too. The most important aspect of their relationship isn't their passion or their curiosity about each other. It's the respect they for each other as lovers, as warriors, and as people. I wanted to reiterate that and the gentleness of their love-life before delving into the violence and grief ahead. Thanks!-Whisper

Reviewer: Lorian Signed [Report This]
Date: 13/07/09 - 07:40 pm Title: Chapter 7: Admissions

WOW! You have such skill in writing!
Calahdra is just like a character I had once (not one I've published on here yet), so I've loved reading what you have up so far (though it gave me a jolt every time I came across her name, as my [real] name is very similar), and it brings some nice memories back. So refreshing from what you normally see in original characters, and filled with the qualities that I strive to achieve in my writing. Your writing feels like a kindred spirit to me, it's wonderful to see something this good for a romancey-type fanfiction! Grammer is impeccably good, the only uncorrected grammatical error that I saw was a few "Namaarie"s instead of "Namarie". Your elvish was very orderly and correct. All in all, a masterpiece. This story will definitely take a place among my favorites. I really hope to see more from you!

-Lorian

Author's Response: Thank you for that wonderful review! I'm glad that so many people find my writing style refreshing. That's really fantastic. As for the typos you mentioned, I will go back and fix them. I'll admit that my elvish is a bit sketchy, but I'm glad that so far it hasn't failed me. And yes, I plan on continuing this story much further, and...drum roll please...I also have another project in the works. -Whisper

Reviewer: faramiriel Signed [Report This]
Date: 30/06/09 - 05:42 pm Title: Chapter 3: Focus

Canon police here! There are a couple things that are off about this chapter:

1. I very much doubt that Legolas would say a word to Calahdra about the Ring. That's top secret information that they hardly share with anyone.

2. Aragorn is the son of Arathorn, not Aragonath.

So, in all, this could be an interesting story, but make sure you're getting your facts right, and try not to have them fall in love too fast. Happy writing!

~faramiriel

Reviewer: faramiriel Signed [Report This]
Date: 30/06/09 - 05:35 pm Title: Chapter 2: Falling

I'm slightly worried about how fast Calahdra is falling for Legolas...it seems way too much like love at first sight.

Reviewer: faramiriel Signed [Report This]
Date: 30/06/09 - 05:34 pm Title: Chapter 1: Sighting

For trying to write in Tolkien's style, this is pretty good. A few grammatical errors and such but on the whole, it meshes well. Interesting start to the story, as well.

Reviewer: eomerbear Signed [Report This]
Date: 28/06/09 - 10:03 pm Title: Chapter 2: Falling

I loved the previous chapter and this one also 'cos the way you described the characters, need I say more?? Well, it was fabtabulous mate!!
Fabtabulus= Fantastic+Fabulous!

Reviewer: eomerbear Signed [Report This]
Date: 28/06/09 - 09:56 pm Title: Chapter 1: Sighting

OMG!! That was an awesomeness chapter! Keep adding!

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