|Reviews for A Ranger's Tale|
| Frayling0 3/11/13 . chapter 1
Thought it was high time to check this out. Not sure if you remember me from way back, but I'm finally back on the site and writing a new story called Sephira :) Now on with the review...
I'm not usually a fan of the traditional fantasy races, I just think they've been done to death, but I'll reserve judgements since it seems you're putting your own unique spin on them. Great opening, set the tone well. I also thought you did the dialogue well in this chapter, it came across as pretty believable. You left plenty of questions open here, so I'm intrigued to continue. Nice start!
| Umekogal 2/23/13 . chapter 23
I believe I have heard about the real-life counterpart of the bolting fishes somewhere and they do cause accidents. Imagine you are enjoying a day speedboating on the river when you get pelted in the face by a 30 pound flying carp. I just thought it would be more telling and amusing if Guy did get knocked out and have to be nursed by Karen. I am still trying to get used to the flow of this fic though.
| Loraine Wentworth 1/27/13 . chapter 10
Not so much action here but that's not a bad thing- especially when contrasted with some recent high-energy fight scenes- it gives the story a great balance. This is an interesting chapter because it gives away some extra clues about several of the characters. Yeras seems interesting, I'm looking forward to finding out more about her. I like the dynamics between her and Alestrial.
A few suggestions:
"I TOLD YOU NOT TO DO THIS, LITTLE GIRL!" [I was a bit confused about who was speaking in this section.]
"Wait a sec. So you still managed to whack the entire lot despite grounding orders set down by Sarge Scholes?" [also confused about dialogue here.]
I also thought the sections were very short here- it didn't give me much time to get a sense of what was happening and what the setting was like.
I did like the bit from Guy's point of view, though. The reader can really get inside his head at these times and understand how he thinks. The power dynamic between him and Sarel is interesting- he seems to be standing up for himself despite her obvious power, which adds a lot to his character.
| Whirlymerle 1/21/13 . chapter 4
["Have you ever wondered about the dream you stand for?"] I know what is meant here, but I think it is worded strangely. I feel like one does not stand for a dream, one might hold it or chase it, or revere it or something.
[he would have taken a pole and shafted it into my ass] Ouch! Lol
[But still in Scholes I trust] This line made me think of Scholes as a bank or something. I'm not sure if that's the image you want to make. If it is, great. If not, I suggest you get rid of the "in." Also, if you flip the sentence around, you wouldn't say "I trust in Scholes," you'd just say "I trust Scholes," so it's weird to have the "in" in the sentence at all.
[Damn, why do I even open my golden mouth?] made me laugh
I thought the conversation in the dream was really interesting. The idea that Guy's dream is Alestrial did not surprise me—so many knight figures do heroic things to honor their lady. That his teacher told him he doesn't actually know what he wants surprised me, in a good way though. It was unexpected, but I absolutely agree that getting the pretty girl should not be your life's goal. I mean, love is dandy and everything, but I for one am a little cynical and don't really think there is "the one" and he/she should make your life's purpose.
[severed like lingering trails of smoke] I think the definition of "severed" means something is cut off abruptly, so I don't think you can "sever" smoke. Maybe something along the lines of "fade" would convey your idea better.
[Indeed notion of fatalism was no different from a charlatan's venom, religion preached throughout The Known World having no value's worth unless a tool gripped in the grasp of fallacy] Getting a bit wordy here… Never underestimate the power of a simple sentence.
I see that you have a mini glossary at the bottom of the page, which is really helpful. I'm still a little confused by what happened though. Like what's "red alert"? And What does it mean to give someone the sledgehammer? Does it mean that they're firing Guy Cody?
I'm not sure if the second italicized section is a dream or a flashback. Is this Guy dreaming of the hero he's meant to become and having Alestrial be the maiden that will tame his wild lion heart or has it happened already? I can't help but feel that the italicized version of himself is not at all like the kind of person he is currently. Like now he seems more amateurish and silly, whereas in that section when he was 12, he seems downright scary. In fact, if it wasn't for the fact that you're comparing Guy to a lion, a metaphor which I really like, I would have at first assumed that it was Aeranath you're talking about.
I actually thought the opening scene was the clearest part of the story. I got that Guy was talking to a mentor of his about his life and the direction it might take. Then Moggray and Southgate are scheming something, then Alestrial, and the last two sections, I feel really lost. Like, where did Aeranath pop up from?
I have mixed feelings about Alestrial as a character. I like the hinting that she's actually steely instead of the just pretty and gentle, and I do like strong female characters, but on the whole, the flawlessness was just a turn off. In my personal opinion, when you have a character that's pretty and strong and loved by all, there's the very room for development and it's very easy for her to end up being a flat character, unrelatable character.
I feel like she's very sure of herself, and I do like that contrast with Guy.
| Myral 1/21/13 . chapter 22
There were quite a few grammatical errors in this that made the story feel very disjointed and difficult to follow in places. The use of certain words made it difficult to work out if it was set in the past or present. But it was alright. Keep going :)
| Sombrette 1/18/13 . chapter 1
Alright so... your writing is kinda fantastic. I was really impressed with the wording and how easily it immersed the reader—'moi'— into your fantasy setting. I'll admit that sometimes I found the description and sentencing to be a bit too elaborate and excess, probably only because I was confusing myself with it, but I really did appreciate the detail.
I couldn't figure out what the bolding was for, but I actually liked it. It seemed like a second narration? It does an interesting thing for the actual narration itself though, sorta like a further away voice emphasizing the scene. I don't know... this is me trying to figure it out lol
One thing I was thrown off by was the dialogue, but only because the style of writing is almost formal and aged that when Aeranath said something 'Sucks' I was like 'Woah... where did that come from?' I was obviously expecting the type of dialect to be more medievalish? Though, I didn't mind the modern take on it, especially the accents of the thugs, those were interesting :)
[That's how he 'define' the term one amongst the rest. Period.] - Maybe defines or defined?
I enjoyed this opening and I think Aeranath, though a little sarcastic, is pretty interesting. I wonder about his exotic heritage and if that plays a role in his story.
| Loraine Wentworth 1/13/13 . chapter 9
Lots happening here. The fight scenes are really effective- the action makes sense and was exciting. I liked how you had Aerenath and Louthes clearly thinking in depth about tactics during the fight. The moves are believable, too- something which isn't' the case with a lot of fantasy stories.
A few specifics:
Beneath the ornate tomb lain an empty coffin [Is this a typo- should it be 'lay'?]
he wind continued its temper as Aeranath's snowy hair billowed along its beck and call. Then the swirling air died down slowly. [I really like this description- very poetic and atmospheric.]
Sarel Aphros would be dead had not Aor's apparent mercy ensuring an illusion otherwise. [Not sure about grammar here.]
Like a lion awakened minutes prior. [I really like the description of Guy here. Now when I hear lion mentioned in this story, I think of Guy. His character is really developing in interesting ways. He is really starting to seem pretty powerful.]
Overall, great chapter with lots of well-written action.
| Umekogal 1/6/13 . chapter 21
Happy New Year. I'm guessing that this arc is going to be longer than the previous one going by the length of the prologue. And don't you just wish fictionpress allows you to upload maps so we don't have to figure out the world's topography from the Notes? :-)
| Whirlymerle 12/29/12 . chapter 3
[The metallic warmth of blood tainted his soul, crucified by the very knowledge of sin itself.] I love the imagery of this, and how I thought "metallic warmth" is really aptly put and very visceral.
[Gripping a bloodied blade gifted as the sole apology, that one individual whose death had damned him for good was nothing but a dream.] Subject confusion: I'm assuming the guy who's gripping the blade is not "that one individual." Here, I think it's better to phrase it as "…apology, he thought that one individual…" thereby inserting the subject in the second clause, or have two independent clauses: "He gripped a bloodied blade as the sole apology; that one individual…"
[A sacrifice too much to shoulder, his people had shaped the future even if they knew not what they wrought.] Here too. Since "his people" is not "the sacrifice," the subject of the sentence is confused. I feel like it makes more sense to combine the first part of the clause with the previous sentence. For example: "destiny had decreed death as the only route back to sanity, a sacrifice too much to shoulder. His people…"
Wow, chilling opening. I like you’re the austerity in your tone here. I think it's very well done.
[Jolted from his slumber, Aeranath's face was drenched with sweat.] Subject confusion: Aeranath's face is not jolted from his slumber, Aeranath himself is.
[For he knew what needs to be done.] Don't quote me, but I'm pretty sure this should be "he knew what needed to be done" to have consistency with your tenses
[Skies were broken, the heavens would never weep.] I really like this imagery, the idea that even though the sky can be ruined, the heavens do not surrender. That, or the idea that something unnatural is happening. Either way, it was thought provoking.
[with the clear full moon ignored as the greatest proof hanging above on the cloak of darkness] I don't quite understand this. It sounds like you mean that the moon above the darkness is a bad omen. If so, maybe this sentence would be more easily understood if you put "as the greatest proof" at the end of the sentence, so that it's not squished in between the two images.
[Even a hamster can see where this is going] Made me laugh. xD
[one lone wolf tore into an army of mongrel dogs] Fantastic metaphor!
[To justify arrogance mean having the goods to show] "meant"
[the night of your eighteenth birthday] the "your" threw me off, because you haven't been writing in second person. I feel like "one's" or just "an eighteenth birthday" would do the trick.
Overall, I thought this was a good chapter. So I know you explained to me that you wanted to create a type of diction specific to this world, which is a really cool idea. I don't know if this is intentional or not, but I feel like Aeranath's sections are narrated in the more formal, epic voice, whereas sections containing characters from the Red Lions contain more of the informal wording. Maybe you could consider scaling back the formal voice even more to distinguish the two sides? I would've loved to see more of the Red Lion banter played out.
I was intrigued by the Alestrial section since I don't think we've actually seen her yet (only in dreams). I wonder if that section is someone's dream also, since it's italicized? I like that we learn more of her backstory.
I really like how you work with the moon motif in this chapter. I think it's a great image to end on, since you're talking about Alestrial and it symbolizes the feminine. I also like how you give it other functions to set the scenery in the battle scenes.
| Umekogal 12/28/12 . chapter 18
I guess the ominous feel in the end of the previous chapter has played out. I suppose this is the end for this part of your fic, just when you are starting to draw me in again. You can consider just leaving out the background notes as I doubt readers will be looking for real-world links to the universe of the story. It'd be like reading Eddings and seeing ancient Egypt in Nyssia or the Vikings in the Alorns.
| Umekogal 12/28/12 . chapter 17
OMG, this is a depressing chapter and the wedding atmosphere sounds ominous with the carrion crows. Nice work with the atmosphere of gloom and doom if that is your purpose here.
| Loraine Wentworth 12/21/12 . chapter 8
The prose runs pretty smoothly in this chapter- well balanced and clear, which is fun to read- so many stories on fictionpress are clunky.
There's just one sentence I wasn't sure about:
Catterm Leen was now dead and so had Pallister Scholes far earlier on
I also thought that the bar fight/murder happened pretty quickly. You could probably make more of it.
I liked the meeting and dialogue between Doves and Aaernath, it was funny. It was interesting to see how confidant Aerenath is- it's clearly a key fact of his personality. I also like the name Doves- it's pretty memorable.
| Erich Sturmburg 12/17/12 . chapter 1
Heya, been a long time. Sorry that I had to review without logging in first; still in camp as I type this down. I was quite surprised that you decided to make a rewrite of your first stories, and I must say, it's one heck of a good decision.
Plot-wise, you got Aeranath a more mysterious, vicious air, which makes him look more like an anti-hero in a way. I like that decision of yours. Description of the town was enough for me to visualise, not too detailed, as what an ordinary person would take notice with their own eyes. The slangs you have on each characters sure made the plot feel more natural in a way without over-reacting to it. Nice balance of everything I must say.
And yes, I'm back as well, with a rewrite of Europa Theatre, or you could say... major overhaul in some aspects. It's good to be back in fictionpress somehow after a long hiatus, eh?"
| Whirlymerle 12/18/12 . chapter 2
[I manage to fully believe anything is possible once your brains popped] Grammar—since you're writing in the present tense, it should be "brains pop," or if using popped as an adjective, "brains are popped"
[athletic jock] If your characters are set in a time comparable to the Middle Ages, I don't know if Guy would be aware of athletic jocks
[Finally liberated for good, this rabbit here is now free to munch his carrot.] Where did the rabbit come form? I'm not sure what this is referring to… maybe I'm being particularly perverted right now, but I'm sensing that there may be some sexual innuendo right here, but I have no idea what it might imply. Who's the rabbit and who's the carrot?
[will always b fe your best show of sincerity] typo here?
Funny herbs…hehe. I like the dream you introduced this chapter with. I think it had all the characteristics of a horror-comedy especially once Guy learns that the girl of his dreams wants to literally take his manhood, haha. I thought it was a creative way to begin this.
[Bells tolling notes of intent, the long day ahead was anticipated like a cold morning bath.] Grammar—you're combining two separate subjects into one here (thus implyng that the long day has bells). Also, the passive voice is kind of awkward. This would make more sense if written along the lines of "While bells tolled totes of intent, the people anticipated the long day like a cold morning bath"
[no a single statement of intent] "not a single…"?
I think this chapter began really strongly, with the aforementioned dream sequences and Guy and Catt's fight and exchange. Now that we get a glimpse of the Red Lions, I can't say I'm surprised any longer about Aeranath being able to slaughter all of them, haha. It make me a little worried, though—if they take themselves so seriously, how much worse are the other troops?
I do think that some of your later sections need a bit more work. Towards the end, it's pretty much complete dialogue. I wish that, since you're moving the reader to a different scene, you'd give some background details as to where they are, what's in their environment, etc. This applies especially to the last scene.
I think your characters' humor have a certain charm about them. So well done on that!
| Erich Sturmburg 12/17/12 . chapter 2
Hello, I have appeared once again,
First things first, I cringed at the beginning portion of Guy's nightmare. Never thought my imagination would go that far in visualisation. The scene with Southgate Garrat made me remember the BMT days, when we would meet our OC for the first time. Thank God my OC was the motivational type. All in all, it's a nice rehash of the chapter, and the references of EPL clubs, and personnel certainly is one of your perks in your stories.
I will see you around.