Reviews for Searching for Sara
leavesfallingup chapter 23 . 11/3/2013
A very well-written, moving and beautiful story. Thank you for sharing it. I suppose that Carla's mother will cause trouble in the sequel? Is she the one who fed the reporters?
leavesfallingup chapter 16 . 11/3/2013
I'm confused about the empty finger. Do you mean a finger with no ring or do you mean she is missing a finger? Perhaps it is obvious and I'm just being dense? (trust me, it happens often)
leavesfallingup chapter 13 . 11/3/2013
A very dramatic and moving scene.
leavesfallingup chapter 11 . 11/3/2013
At least he is taking steps in the right direction. I like the way that Sara is findig her voice. Her kind heart is showing through as well. She might never assert herself for her own benefit, but she will for the sake of those she cares about.

One note; you typed:
"Mister Christopher is in his studio finishing his set-up for you," Harold informed.

"Harold, for heaven sake," Dix scolded. "Stop calling me that. You make me feel like a grandmother."

As you will note from these two lines, Harold never actually addressed Dix by any name or title, yet Dix corrected him. I think that you might have intended for Harold to call her "Madam" or something similar?
leavesfallingup chapter 10 . 11/3/2013
It is obvious to everyone but Teddy that Sara's attention... and probably her heart... is already directed somewhere else. An excellent chapter. She is slowly drawing Chris back out of the hole of self-pity he dug.

One correction; you typed "Gwin hasn't once woken him in the middle of the night..." This sentence was a part of an imagined conversation with Carla, set in quotation marks; so the pronoun "him" should have been "me."

I was wondering if Sara understood the whole "Pot" and "Kettle" argument between Teddy and Dix. A pot calling the kettle black is an American colloquialism. It does fit the timeframe, however. The "I'm pulling your leg" statement that followed, however, is a figurative phrase that came out of Vaudeville in the 1920's.
leavesfallingup chapter 5 . 11/2/2013
So then, (continuing from my previous comment) she kept herself safe, but people still assumed. Life in service couldn't have been easy. It is interesting that it is wrong for Sara to be there but it is acceptable for Amy to be there, though she is also young and single.

Chris' dream betrays his growing interest and attraction to Sara. Inevitable, I suppose. How exactly did Carla die?
leavesfallingup chapter 4 . 11/2/2013
Although she is not saying it, and neither are you (the author), I'm getting the impression that Sara's beauty is one of the reasons that the men, especially the last one, tried to keep her there. Is that also the reason that she was fired so many times? Did the women send her away to keep their men away from her? Or am I misreading the subtleties here?
leavesfallingup chapter 3 . 11/2/2013
We take freedom for granted so easily now. Most of us never understand how fragile and tenuous our freedom is; how easily greedy and grasping people could take it away from us. True freedom requires us to work to keep it safe. Someone like Sara would definitely understand and she would always cherish her freedom.
leavesfallingup chapter 2 . 11/2/2013
Your story thus far makes me think that Sara has endured a lot. Did her previous trial and false accusation have something to do with her art? Did someone else take credit for it? Or does this have something to do with her being a young female under the power of wealthy males?

It sounds like she has finally found a good place, though she may take a while to trust the truth of this.
53BookTitles chapter 23 . 2/21/2010
I can think of only one thing that can sum up this amazing story: aw!

Everything was so detailed! And I truly believed it was happening :)

FrenchSilkPie chapter 18 . 5/4/2005
Sorry I haven’t reviewed in awhile. Dance has kept me busy, what with competitions and conventions and rehearsals and classes and more, tis the season! Anyway, I don’t really have much to say, you’re doing great and I’m glad we’ve reached a new level in Sara’s feeling, Chris’s feelings, and the feelings for each other that they are showing. I’ve been reading this sporadically so it’s seemed like a long time that we were stuck at the ‘neither will admit they like the other’ stage, but it wasn’t excruciating.

The main reason I wanted to review is actually not because of something in any recent chapters but rather something that just happened recently in my own life. It’s not exactly something I feel comfortable talking about online, but I will say it has had me quite depressed for some times now. And no, no one has died, and I wasn’t dumped by a guy. Anyways, not to sound melodramatic, I ended up spending more time crying this past weekend than I have in years (not being one to cry very often). So, while reading the scene in which Sara is crying, now having “experience”, a rather interesting question crossed my mind. When people cry, to be frank, they tend to have a dreadfully runny nose. And, with all the crying Sara has done throughout this novel, I imagine Dix’s household is running short on Kleenex (just kidding). But seriously, I know the topic is…strange… but to uphold a sense of realism I feel it’s necessary to keep true to the fact that there’s a lot of snot involved with prolonged crying. I’m not saying you have to mention snot (jeez I hate that word) in particular, but I would try to at least convey the fact that people don’t exactly look or sound beautiful when they cry. Nor do they feel well after getting so congested, for me at least crying brings on a terrible headache and stuffy feeling.

So…. yeah, this concludes my rant on crying. Great job!

FrenchSilkPie chapter 14 . 3/16/2005
O, drama. Chris vs. Teddy, and Teddy’s revolution. Sparks will fly! I’m sorry, I feel a little guilty now after my last, and rather harsh review. So this time I’m going to point out what you do WELL so you can keep doing it. Keep in mind there is no way I could write out EVERYthing good about your writing here (there are so many things), but I’ll try to get the main things down…

I. Your plot is unique, not cliché at all, and I can tell that it has been well thought out and not at all carelessly handled. You are definitely leading up to something and your story has an intriguing direction.

II. You’re characters do not act the same, and not just your main characters but the minor ones as well. Everyone has their own personality, a realistic personality, and they are not cookie cutter.

I. The actions of the characters, and their reactions are consistent and realistic. Gwinnie especially. As a young child not yet mature enough to realize that the world doesn’t revolve around her but still sweet, innocent and not at all annoying despite her lack of maturity (which will come in time) she has definitely won my heart.

IV. Your characters are endearing, I love them all. (Notice all these points on characters! It’s definitely a strong point for you)

V. You manage to intersperse many different elements, like mystery, drama, tragedy, and uplifting spiritual writing into your story without diverting or getting sidetracked. Everything blends in together and yet remains distinctly separate.

VI. YOUR MAIN CHARACTER IS MEEK BUT NOT SMALL! (Something I am very guilty of, all my main female characters are petite, most likely because I’M petite and I can relate to the size better…are you tall?)

VII. You utilize …’s and underlined words to emphasize and add flavor to your writing.

VI. I have to go to dinner but there is a lot more that you excel at and I encourage you to keep writing no matter how evil and demanding I may be (not that my comments would ever hold enough influence to dissuade you from writing).

Sorry for the previous review, I don’t disagree with any points I made ut I think I could have worded some it of a little nicer.

FrenchSilkPie chapter 13 . 3/16/2005
Thank you for the e-mail, I’m glad that you appreciate my comments. You probably did mention that this was a draft somewhere but sometimes I just get so wrapped up in the story that I don’t read the author’s notes. It’s also why I only review every two or three (or four) chapters.

Anyways, Now that we’re really getting into the story I have to say that your pace has been a little quick. You have some excellent ideas in here, about God and about finding yourself and overcoming adversity. However, you’re losing the power of these ideas by rushing through them and only bringing them up in small snippets every now and then. It seems that every time Sara and Chris are alone together there is a “god is really there, you just have to listen” “No he isn’t” scene. But each of them is so similar that it’s more of a repetition than a furthering of the ideas. I think that by combining most of what you have done so far into a few select but well developed and explored scenes would greatly enhance the ideas your trying to convey. The scene where Sara gets Chris to express his feelings with the charcoal is a good example. That scene was SUPERB! It played on the ideas you’ve been mentioning from the beginning but it held so much more emotion and appeals than the little scenes you’ve interspersed into your chapters.

As for the pace (which I got off topic on a paragraph ago), I believe that too much has happened within such a short period of time and that by spanning the story over a period of weeks or even months instead of days would increase the realism of your work. Another way to do this would be to focus evenly on the relationship between Sara and Chris, and between Sara and herself. As it is you’ve written a lot about Chris, his new friendship with Sara, and his trials. You have not, however, written much beyond the first few chapter’s of Sara’s changes. Yes she is becoming looser and more comfortable with the idea of not being a servant, yet, it seems that she is losing some of her depth. In the beginning she was such a strong character that I looked forward to seeing grow and develop, but now it seems like this growth has happened behind the scenes (if that makes any sense) and I feel cheated. As a human, her changes and her new ideas about herself (the “new Sara”) are not going to happen overnight! And you could further her so much as a character by going deeper into these changes. It saddens me to think that she may just be becoming a flat, one-dimensional character, which she seems to be heading towards at the moment.

Finally I think that someone with your talent for writing could even further improve by varying you vocabulary and imagery. Try reading Steinbeck, some people find him boring as heck but his use of imagery and words is profound. By mixing up your words and sentences a bit and adding a few more paragraphs describing the scenery and landscape (I simply love this time period in terms of city life and architecture, it’s so beautiful and winter if my favorite season to depict it in) I think you could immensely increase the caliber of this already astounding story.

I’m sorry for being so long winded today, if you can’t tell I’m very passionate about writing and you caught me in a ranting mood ; Don’t let my criticisms bother you, I love your story and it is one of the best I’ve found on Fictionpress so far. Keep up the excellent work.

FrenchSilkPie chapter 8 . 3/13/2005
Just a short comment, I like how you keep the character’s habits consistent. Sara always clutches her skirts or whatever is in her hands when she grows uncomfortable, and Mr. Lake has a habit of making a fist. This is very astute of you, I’ve never noticed it before in writing’s on character development or whatnot, or if I have it was only vaguely mentioned. Anyway, just a passing compliment.

FrenchSilkPie chapter 6 . 3/13/2005
’m going to go out on a limb here (something I rarely do) and make a prediction. A silly, unfounded, and completely incorrect one no doubt, but perhaps it’ll amuse you to see what your readers are thinking. Anyway, here goes… I think Mrs. Lake sent for Sara knowing she’d die soon and hoping that if her husband didn’t fall in love with her, he’d at least find solace in taking care of a floundering artist as she once did for him.

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but you use “…” a lot in your writing. “Her…her family” “she felt…enough” and while this is a good way to add meaning to certain words, it should be used sparingly less it lose its power. Try varying your sentence structure to emphasize emotions, words, and revelations instead of resorting to “…”.

One last comment, I like how you explained Sara’s emotions when thinking about motherhood and her love for Gwinn. She felt like she was “enough”, this is an ingenious way to describe the complete feeling of happiness you’re getting at, I love it!

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