Reviews for A Siren Call
K. L. Topaz chapter 11 . 12/3/2007
I love it!
Frosthold chapter 1 . 10/9/2007
Interesting! I really love all the imagery, it was really good and gave me goosebumps. Also, I like how it was writen in second person, too. It gave it a very unusual feel and really got you into a relaxed sort of state. Really, the entire effect of the whole piece was very calming, so a good thing to read before bed ) (maybe in another couple of hours). Anyways, the hook at the begining drew me right in and I couldn't take my eyes off your work until I was finished. Quite spectacular, I must say. I don't really have any criticism for this, so good job!

SpicyStrawberries not logged chapter 1 . 10/4/2007
Wow, this is amazing so far. I'm excited to see how you change the story from the classic tale to your own. You have such a unique way of writing, not with "I" or "she", but "you". It's different, and makes it an even more enjoyable read. Off to read the rest!
Nightless Dreamer chapter 11 . 9/30/2007
gr8 story...argh, cant w8 to find out wat happens nxt!
Midnight Strike chapter 11 . 9/9/2007
I like the development of the interaction between the friends. Wondering about Gurden and Stacey's relationship, and about what the king wants with the humans as well as Gurden's place in all of this.

Why did it end there?
Midnight Strike chapter 10 . 9/9/2007
"But you know that the seas are not ruled by a benevolent cartoon merman named Triton and Livingston has never been on a ship exploring the far reaches of space." Ahahahahaha.

Wait...what? Gary / Gurden?


*falls over*
Midnight Strike chapter 9 . 9/9/2007
Not much to say about this chapter except that it reveals some fascinating aspects of siren history.

It's short but sweet. I like it.
Midnight Strike chapter 8 . 9/9/2007
"Then rock and road and the edges of rainforest begin to give way to buildings." Rainforest? I wonder where they are.

"The furniture is sparse, consisting of a card table and eclectic set of chairs in the breakfast nook and a futon and beanbag chairs in front of a glass and plastic box with metal antennae whose use eludes your understanding for the time being." Whoa. This sentence is too much for me. I can understand why you would want to describe the furniture, but this is a rush of information all at once that's not really necessary to be put together. Perhaps breaking it up?

I like the observation of height. "Funny how, standing next to Jason, it was suddenly something important. Important because it felt safe and threatening all at once." It's an interesting thing to point out.

This doesn't make sense to me: "And because it set your eyes level with his gold tanned chest peeking through the half open Hawaiian shirt, sending a warm blush to your face." Why would it make her blush if nakedness is natural to her and she didn't hesitate in revealing herself?

I'm also curious about the extent of her father's spell. Now I understand why she is unable to tell anybody the abuse she has endured and why everybody believes the king.

What do sirens eat in the water? Hmm.

Oh. I wonder what will happen to the two of them.
Midnight Strike chapter 7 . 9/9/2007
Hm. I wonder what happened. Is it magic? Is it the half human thing? I don't know. It's so weird. I want to find out more!

"Every spoken word carries a cadence and intonation like music and as a siren mer, you understand all music. It is the foreign concepts he is expressing that baffle you." I like this line.

I love how new everything is to Sasha, and I like how you describe things. I can't wait to see her learn how to live among the humans.

Aww I feel so sorry for Sasha. I just want to like...give her cookies and warm milk and put a blanket over her. I like how you use the chinese character for ocean as the separator. I noticed that before but forgot to mention it.

I wonder...Sasha's voice is still as powerful on land as it is in water? interesting! And it's a whole different way of speaking of air or magic.
Midnight Strike chapter 6 . 9/9/2007
Sasha always seem so powerful and vulnerable at the same time. For me there is a slight inconsistency. Why does she fear her father if she could escape and travel outside the kingdom with such ease? I understand from the abuse standpoint, but knowing she has the power to outwit and to run from her father's spies (I'm assuming as a princess she would have multiple bodyguards), wouldn't that make her feel more confident in herself?

The king seems power hungry and obsessed with control to me. He doesn't seem like the sort of father who would tolerate having his daughter run around everywhere, but maybe this would be explained later, so I'll keep reading.

A little puzzled by this line: "He’d never tried it before, he wasn’t even sure that it could be done, but it seemed that if your father intended to invade your mind and take control then it should be possible for Gurden to similarly implant his knowledge directly into your memory."

So the father has taken control of her mind before? Or is she uncertain if it was intentional or not? The problem in this sentence for me is the "if" and the "intended". It feels like it should be referring to a particular event that I cannot recall.

Love this line: "From this angle, you can see without being seen, and you stare out into the wilderness with a paranoia born of necessity."

Aha! I really like your description of rusalka to her eyes. Love this: "Four limbs. No tail. The human legs bent at obscene angles. The thing crabs its way along the ocean floor and toward the rocks jutting up out of the water. Your heart shudders at the sight of it." It does conjure up a sense of fear.

Ooh the surface. I think you built the mood up quite well. I'm reading and anticipating what will happen next.

Great chapter. I like the action description, I could almost feel myself suffocating like Sasha, and the fear for the rusalka.
Midnight Strike chapter 5 . 8/30/2007
Oh interesting plot development. Maybe I haven't been focusing on the details or my memory is hazy, but the mention of Sasha's mother and her escape to the surface. That's neat.

More explanation about the Old Atlantis ruins! Yippee!

Hmm. The idea of Sasha being used as a weapon by the abusive king who is her father. I like that a lot. But Gurden as a telepath who is more powerful than the king himself is a little...shaky for me. I don't know. I'm the type of person that likes it when the main character struggles and fights and is weak but perseveres. It seems like...cheating to me if she also has a powerful ally. But this could also work. I think I've been reading stories where the main character has it too easy though, which is why I'm skeptical.

A lot of development in this chapter. I really wonder about their relationship and what it involves. I haven't seen Sasha behave like a real princess so far. Even one that was abused and belittled still should have training to have the bearing of a princess. I'm starting to see a hint of that here, even if it is hesitant.

There's much to think about in this chapter though.
Midnight Strike chapter 4 . 8/30/2007
Hello again, sorry it's been such a while. I've been away, but I'm excited to keep on reviewing!

I find Sasha's father intimidating through his word choice and the way you describe his presence. You did it effectively without going through elaborate descriptions or the use of dramatic language, which I liked.

I also liked the way you portrayed the siren power, with the force of the father's voice being able to strike her. I wonder how long this abuse has been going on. It's painful to read.

I wonder about how much the sirens know about humans and how much interaction they've had with them.

Some awkwardness in sentence structure -

"You outstripped Weschel’s mathematical abilities a year or two ago and the current arithmetic as far beneath you." I stumbled over these lines because these seem like two separate ideas that are similar, but is hard to connect with an 'and'. Perhaps a semi colon and some word rearranging would be better?

"I do not have time to discuss with you" This line feels like it should have connected better to the next line in conversation. It was interrupted at an awkward place for me, especially because it does not fit her father's speech patterns as a noble.

"Instinctively, you struggle against the rock to move out from under his voice but he is advancing on you and soon his mouth is near your ear." I feel too breathless in this sentence with too many ideas thrown at me at once, perhaps some commas?

At the end, I'm so curious to find out about the Old Atlantis relics and how her father keeps power over his subjects using that. And I love the last line "You may not be able to shed tears, but in your own fashion you can still cry."

Another wonderful chapter.
The Breakdancing Ninja chapter 11 . 8/17/2007

Man, I love what you did with Gurden; I don't care if he's evil or nice or whatever, I just love what you did with him, goddamn! Though, I do seem to have an affinity for male leads who act sort of gross and immoral...

Wait, there were a few errors within the chapter; I should've kept the review box open. I apologize if I don't catch them. There weren't many.

Wait, no, let me talk about how the conflicting emotions are written. It's strong, definite, but also ambivalent, which gives me this airy shiver. I like how jealousy and betrayal are mixed in with sympathy and mistrust, sincerity and ruefulness. I love that confusion; it's so real, and I love how it's just brought to life by this poor girl who just wants to see stars. I think it's more powerful because she is naive and new to human emotion. So poignant and frightening!

I get crippled by humor or good dialogue, so there isn't much I could say. It was great. I love this "new" Gurden; I didn't know he could get any manlier, but man. That was prime. [Suddenly Gurden is taking a very menacing step toward you. You have never known him to behave this way toward you, this imposing.] Very sexual! Well, to me. I'm easily aroused by good stage direction. rofl No, what was really sexually intense was him pretty much raping Sasha's mind. That was hardcore. I loved it!

[And you are not in the mood to trust him either, much as a part of you longs too.] *to.

[“Don’t you ever do that again,” you tell him, pouring all the revulsion and resolve you are feeling into your voice, letting the magic soak the sounds, “Never.”] I think the last piece of spoken dialogue makes more sense as "Ever" than "Never." But I think to show the frenzy and panic of just having been mind raped, she should probably say it twice for good measure, like: "Don't you ever do that again..." (and then) "Never do that again." I think it's a little more true to someone who's completely brain scattered.

[You sang with him, the accusation in the words makes your skin crawl with unease. There is nothing wrong with what you’ve done; you believe that.] I'm telling you, man, I heard Wham! singing Careless Whispers.

[The tension between you and Gurden fails to lesson any with the object of your discussion now standing there.] *lessen.

lmao lmao Gary Gurden (fucking cursed for life!)

ARG! I loved how quickly and effectively the dynamic was set up without being too obvious or melodramatic. It's like, a love square! No, it can't be a love square because we're not certain Jason is interested in Stacey or even Sasha. But I like Jason a lot still. And I'm glad Stacey isn't just some stupid and jealous bimbo. It makes it so much harder to feel that righteous anger!

Oh, man, I love when I feel this confused. Not confused over the wording of the narrative or the disjunctiveness of plot. But I love when I don't know how to feel or what to expect next. It's heavenly.

And where are the rest of the chapters for this story? What is this hold up, here? No, wait, take your time. We don't want to kill a great story. But man, thanks for the awesome read. My head cold feels like I just blasted it with two scoops of wasabi. I feel great. This was awesome.

Rock on, Elisefey!
The Breakdancing Ninja chapter 10 . 8/17/2007
WHOA WHAT? okay, I have to calm down. Must calm down and write coherent review.

I just want to read ahead but I know I shouldn't. Alright, feedback for this chapter (calm down)... It truly was a chapter of discovery.

I think Sasha's identity crisis is similar to a lot of the identity crises that people have; it's just that the transformation is physical. It reminds me of the homosexual son in a conservative family. One day he's dressing a certain way and acting polite at Church, and even that very evening he's macking with some other dude wearing all black and getting high. It's an extreme example but the fact that we could see Sasha's attempt to really master both identities is pretty stunning. And it's not like, an overnight thing. By the end of the section where she is trying to see how her transformation is, there is resgination: That's enough... for now. Sasha has a lot of strength, which is, like, awesome.

Another thing I like about her physical transformation is that it is overwhelming and hurts like hell, as all powerful transformations do. It takes perseverence, will power, determination. There's no doubt in my mind that she'll be able to master herself, because she doesn't just give up on first try. I also liked that when she was walking through the sand toward the bonfire, she knew she didn't quite fit in, but at least she didn't freak out and get all emo. She faced it head on.

The descriptions of the transformation were stunning, all the verbs used. I think the part with the gills and the tail forming were really effective. It seriously looks like it hurts like hell; the detail about her inhaling the sweetness but also the chemicals of the water was impeccably placed.

I like her fixation with the sky; someone looking skyward always has elevated ideas, heavy contemplations, strong goals.

One thing I think that she should be able to detect a little better than others though is like, sea breeze. Maybe it's got that same smell that chocolate chip cookies have for little kids; it's so tempting to want to jump back in. And this is also really random, but maybe she steps in a wet part of the sand and could feel a burrow for baby sand crabs. I don't know.

But yeah, whoo, is it REALLY GURDEN?

I don't want to risk giving a crappy review or anything, because I'm getting a head cold and my stamina isn't as good for reviewing today, but I want to know. If I end up giving a weird review, don't kill me. I have to freaking know!

But this chapter had awesome descriptions! I really liked how quiet the beginning of it was; I felt like I was sitting and watching T.V. with her!
The Breakdancing Ninja chapter 9 . 8/17/2007
Yeah, this might increase my stalker level by like five points, but I live in Southern California, too. right in the heart of San Fernando Valley, though I was going to school up near Pasadena for a while, went to grade school in Los Feliz and high school in Burbank; now I'm relocating to NorCal to finish up my Junior and Senior year at UCB. The freeway interchanges are balls.

Anyway. rofl

[It seems you are both still shaken by the experience of singing together. Guilt hangs over you like a shadow.] This reminds me of that Wham! song... what was it. Oh, yeah, "Careless Whispers". I mean, it's a real sexy thing to sing/dance with a stranger alone. It's got the same intimacy of like, sharing their toothbrush or reading their journal without consent-to me, at least.

[“Your dad must be a real piece o’ work,” he mutters.] Thank God we don't get endless mounds of explanation that take away our ability to think. I think that's another one of my peeves; when characters say something mysterious and meaningful and an author puts in like five paragraphs of explanation. It really is a sad thing though that Sasha was prohibited by her father from expressing herself (so I share that anger with Jason, though I think he REALLY feels bad that she feels bad about singing at all). In literature, singing and acting are mirrors of Nature, and when there is a poet who has lost the ability to rhyme or a bard who has lost his voice, it says something has gone really bad in the writing; I think it's why literature that talks about the loss of inspiration or expression and the finding of it generates some of the most powerful reads out there. Because, I think, the proxy of death, or the experience of death, is a loss of expression.

[“It’ll be alright,” he unexpectedly tells you quietly, slipping one arm gently over your shoulders, careful to avoid the soreness in your back. It is strangely comforting.] this is a tough one, because both "unexpectedly" and "quietly" are both extremely active. I think, though, "quietly" could be omitted because the ambiance of night and the intimacy of sitting on a step together can generate that whisper even if it's not written.

Oh, man, that myth part was sweet. My brain was all tingly. I mean, this battle with the lips, jealousy, death, betrayal, paranoia. Those're strong, and they were accented-I think it was the fairytale-like essence that made all the abstracts really stand out like a pop-up picture book. Though there have been tons of epic moments throughout the story, the portion of the narration talking about the curse was extremely epic and well-written; so swift and easy! I liked it, too, seeing the intimacy coupled with the essence of forbidden love.

I mean, for Sasha, who grew up in the shadow of her father, probably even having a radical -idea- of loving a human man probably scares the hell out of her. Me, too. Dude, I mean, really, this is gonna get bad.

What I'm really concerned about is like, she makes the T.V. explode but when she sings, it doesn't make Jason's head explode. I don't understand; what's the difference? Is it like, acceptable frequencies vs. unacceptable frequencies?

I really like the sensory qualities of the night, I mean, the details that were discussed when Sasha was sitting on that stair; there really does seem to be a similarity between the water and night air, the velveteen nature of it, the coolness. Stars have their own place in literature; my thoughts on her not being able to see them, is that in literature, they are either points of guidance or ancestral expression. Whatever the interpretation, we may very well understand that she is lost, confused, without guidance/enlightenment, or not provided with an adequate example of how to express herself, or "sing".

The word Hostel always strikes up the horror flicks. Those scared the hell out of me. I hope Gary isn't some weird creepy lecherous dude. lmao
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