|Reviews for The Coquette and the Thane|
| DeadnightWarrior 3/24/13 . chapter 37
Oh wow. I finished this story in two sittings, I almost couldn't bring myself to pause last night when I was too tired to continue reading. I really enjoyed this, even though when Kedean first expressed some serious interest in Baisyl and vice versa I thought "Well. That came... fast..." it wasn't nearly enough to put me off the story. Very well written in any case and you nearly (NEARLY, I SAID) made me cry when Kedean left.
I'm afraid I don't have anything too constructive to say, just thought to leave a review. Thank you for the read!
| Veneya 3/12/13 . chapter 5
i'm liking this sooo far I've read up to...Baisyl is sure a unique character...I love him/her already
| snapdragon 29 2/24/13 . chapter 37
Hey, I love your story. Mostly I love Baisyl, though the rest of your characters are pretty excellent. I really, REALLY love his character and how you handled him - he's perfect and arrogant and just so presumptuous I adore him. That said, I went to your profile and followed to the stories with Cale, and I saw Baisyl in a whole different light. I knew you'd made it clear how, well, dominant he was (and not just in the sexual way!) but without seeing that, I'd kind of always viewed him as just a kind of entitled nobleman: all bark. I just think you should recommend that your readers look towards that to get a better grasp of Baisyl's character, in its entirety, if you haven't already!. I really did enjoy having that perspective.
And, just to let you know, I was laughing all through writing this. My mind's in the gutter from your Cale/Baisyl, which were also awesome, and I'm seeing jokes everywhere.
| R. Ficst 1/21/13 . chapter 37
I loved it. And I now must go to the sequel!
| Flame Within Ice 12/20/12 . chapter 6
Ooh I like the short opening scene with the new character Fern. Her personality comes to life in her first appearance, and you slipped in some background to her without making it stand out. My immediate reaction: I like her!
I am also suddenly reminded of the screeching eels from The Princess Bride. That's all I'm going to picture the Irean eels as from now on. Very creepy description of some of the monsters, and I like how you're starting to casually work in the fantasy element (aside from Baisyl's curse, of course). You're not putting it in there from the start, you're more easing into it, which is a nice way of bringing in the supernatural. Too much at once could overwhelm. I can't wait to see where this goes!
| Flame Within Ice 12/20/12 . chapter 5
Poor Kedean, he's so confused. I do like your way of writing the fight scenes, interspersing dialogue with detailed action, and still it isn't too cluttered to follow easily. That's a very nice skill you have there.
I also like how you worked in Kedean's realization at the end, and it provides future reasoning for how he will find out about Baisyl's curse. Also, I'm now wondering-is Baisyl really his name? I'm assuming that's a girl's name picked out after the curse fell, but the uncertainty behind this assumption leads me to wonder more about Baisyl, which equals more will to read.
| Flame Within Ice 12/20/12 . chapter 4
Though it doesn't really center on this one chapter, I must say that your chapter names are incredibly clever. You also come up with original similes and metaphors, -you compared a rock and a paper swan instead of the traditional "rock and a hard place", which was a refreshing change.
And oh, how I love Baisyl's comments. They're so out of character in the eyes of everyone else because he looks like a woman, which makes them even funnier. I also like how you displayed the meeting with Kedean and boarding of the ship from Baisyl's point of view as well. Even though it was the same conversation, including his thoughts and actions gave it a new spin.
| Flame Within Ice 12/20/12 . chapter 3
For the first half of this chapter, I really liked how you described in detail Kedean's training and subsequent sparring match with his brother. It helps to expand the relationship between the two of them and offers a nice transition back into the main plot.
The only thing I found odd was this sentence, which distracted me for a moment: [the oranges and pinks of morning elapsed by the full, bright yellow of day]-The word "elapsed" seems a bit strange in context and interrupts the flow of the sentence. For example, it would seem more natural in a sentence like "Before three minutes had elapsed", and relates to the passage of time. I can see why it would be used in describing the time/colors passing with the sunrise, but it just seems a little bit out of place. "Eclipsed" might be a more natural word to use.
I also love how Baisyl's irritation is still evident, even from Kedean's perspective, especially since the reader has the dramatic irony of knowing that Baisyl's not technically a girl while Dean's still clueless. What he says to Dean there at the end made me laugh, particularly the bit where it says, "trust that I not trip on that diseased looking thing passing off as a boarding plank".
| Flame Within Ice 12/20/12 . chapter 2
Okay, I was on the verge of laughing practically the whole chapter. I'm not sure if that was intended or not, but I found Baisyl's whole situation incredibly amusing. You made his reasons for anguish and irritation extremely clear. Having the elder brother become a creepy incestuous molester seemed a reasonable leap with the addition of Rhyan's observations of Myles' character. I also liked how you kept the source of his curse mainly out of the picture, only dropping hints every now and then.
| Ekaetriana 12/12/12 . chapter 3
Second easy fix review payback for Artist-Author Trade, I believe this is all that is owed but I can do more if asked. :3
[He dressed quickly and efficiently, skin still prickly with a morning chill by the time he stepped out the front door, and his breath made foggy, white clouds in the dark air, soft, wet shoots of grass folding under his bare feet as he moved further from the house until he deemed he had enough space. Then, he began to move.]
'he began to move' - this word choice seems a little odd when he was already moving by stepping out the front door and moving further from the house.
[Outwardly, he showed no sign of acknowledging it, continuing on through his drill without pause—but his focus had shifted completely. His body moved by muscle memory, his mind on the shadow of a figure in the corner of his eye and his ears trained to the falls of whisper-light footsteps, softer than a sough over a still sea.
Ready, Kedean caught the first strike with an open palm, both diverting the attack and opening his opponent up, leaving him weak on defense and wide spread for an attack, but Zyric knew him well and sidestepped not a moment too soon, ducking in the next second to shorten up the distance and even the odds, at least at some level.
There was no question who had the size and range advantage—Kedean towering at least a foot over his brother and measuring nearly half again as broad in the shoulders—but close combat eliminated range as a factor, focusing the fight, concentrating it.
They quickly adopted a rhythm, relearning each other's habits and adjusting accordingly, like familiar dance partners reintroduced to one another after an extended hiatus. Kedean took the opportunity to test his brother's progress, leaving the pace mostly up to him, but pushing on occasion against basic boundaries and reassessing former areas of weakness.]
I enjoy your description as always. You build a good, clear picture in the reader's mind. However, it seems like every sentence is running on. There are several places where the sentence can be broken into two rather than continued. I can see that it is a matter of style, it's your style to use a lot of commas. But I still figured I would suggest that.
Again the dialogue in this piece is *really* well written. There's a natural back-and-forth between the characters that flows perfectly.
['"Don't let my sister die,"' Kedean thought, 'got it.' "I understand, milord."]
This could be correct but something is bothering me about the punctuation here. You've got three quotation marks on each side where I believe you only need one, also, there need not be any quotes around 'got it.' Generally, italics speak for themselves. If it's in italics, it's clear that the character is thinking it. Perhaps it's your style to add quotes, but just know it isn't necessary.
I've really enjoyed reading this even though I don't like slash all that much. You take a unique situation and present it in such a manner that I'm not annoyed, disgusted, or anything negative like I typically would be. I am interested in these characters, you give them subtle depth to their personalities and actions without going overboard.
Thanks again for the art, and, again, I apologize that it took me so long to return all this.
| Ekaetriana 12/11/12 . chapter 2
I am paying back a serious review debt. I really do apologize. I feel horrible about not finishing things, and this was something serious, I basically stole that art from you.
So here I am. I am not as verbose as I once was. My brain has taken a real beating and it's hard to concentrate. I'll try to stay on track here. I'll be reviewing as I read.
[With the maid gone, Baisyl allowed his sneer to surface, and he turned a narrowed, warning glare on the elder of his two younger brothers. "You know perfectly well that I am not-"
"Ah, tut-tut!" Myles cut in, his smile cutting and vindictive. "Did I give you permission to speak?" he asked, and Baisyl's gut coiled, his eyes narrowing further. "Such poor, poor manners for a lady of your age and stature, to interrupt a man, your better, in the midst of-"]
I'm really liking how easily you write your dialogue. It's natural for the setting, and I can hear it in my head.
The same can be said for the character interactions. The characters interacting with each other are easily visualized (Baisyl ignoring the maid, Myles coming in to speak with Baisyl), and even early on introducing these characters, they are distinct from one another in the way they act. Your words are painting a great picture in my head. It could be the descriptions doing this, or it could just be that your word choice and sentence flow is really great.
[Baisyl jerked to a stand, skirts swirling to catch at his ankles when he spun to face his brother]
If I were to criticize one thing so far, and mind you this is just a personal complaint, I've been very confused as to the gender of Baisyl this far. I've been confused as to whether there is another man in the room who is "he." I know there isn't, because I'm aware that Baisyl must be a man in a female body...I think. It *was* a good move to use "he" in the description, and "she" in the dialogue.
But to spring something like that on a reader without making it crystal clear - such as in a sentence saying that "he" hated being called a "she" - can leave that reader behind.
[Baisyl jerked, but fighting the pin only earned him more weight, trapping him down, and he hissed, "I will castrate you-"]
Anyway, this scene of Myles having Baisyl up against the wall is quite uncomfortable to me, but, you know what, I think that was exactly what you were going for. You did a good job of drawing out the tension, making me say "oh god, no more" just as Baisyl would be thinking. Then some relief comes, yet the tension is still high.
I think you can write atmosphere quite well.
["I apologize, brother, I didn't mean to imply…" Rhyan pursed his lips, turning over his words, reworking them. Eventually, he sighed. "I am just not used to seeing you like…this," he said, letting a vague, sweeping wave of the hand indicating Baisyl's body cover everything—from slim waist and petite figure to ass-length hair and protruding chest—in a single go. "Forgive me for getting rather accustomed to you being more than capable of taking caring of yourself all your life-"]
Oooohkay, this is the part where you make it more crystal clear. I must say the cuss word kind of throws me off because I haven't seen a whole heap of it in the dialogue *or* description.
I've come to the end of the story. I really like the character interaction, it's naturally shown in the dialogue and physical action.
A criticism here could be that their names are used a bit too much in dialogue. In natural speaking, one doesn't always say the name of the person they are speaking to all that much.
I digress. This was a good chapter. You're a fine writer if I do say so myself.
| Anon 12/7/12 . chapter 5
| Anon 12/7/12 . chapter 3
Love love love this
| Vernelley 12/6/12 . chapter 2
So, the other major character. Very interesting and unusual situation, and as I might have said before, it's a unique plot. I like how you hint at the cause of Baisyl's circumstances but don't launch right into a detailed explanation because it leaves room for some questions.
I also have to say your world feels really grounded. Of course there would be problems with having the firstborn son currently in a female body, but then you addressed other social/political issues such as Myles abusing the current situation to his advantage and inheriting things and privileges that should have been Baisyl's. It also says something about the position of females in the society of this world.
I'm glad Baisyl at least has someone like Rhyan to confide in, although his time is just about up seeing as he has to leave the next day. I like the interaction between them though, it's a stark contrast to the relationship between Baisyl and Myles. It should be pretty interesting to see how Kedean and Baisyl interact as well, provided Baisyl doesn't run away and they do meet up.
from the RH
| Deserthawk 12/5/12 . chapter 2
Oh GOD - that is just - horrible. How can anyone be that... effed up. That whole family, man. That ... just made me feel really weird. Myles (like WTF? Seriously?). I don't think I've been as disgusted with a character in so few words before. And yet, this chapter made me laugh a few times too. Especially how Baisyl was dealing with that handmaid.
Really good job with the dialogue. How you show off their personalities right away, without using any explanations. As screwed up as the relationship between Baisyl and Myles is, at least he has Rhyan.
That whole part where Baisyl was talking about suicide just made me so sad. The worst thing is, that's not an inaccurate representation of how it used to be for women (even in this world, in certain places). And even if he gets that curse lifted, that won't change.