Reviews for Roanoke
improvisationallychallenged chapter 3 . 11/10/2008
2nd chapter for the review game:

Now the ranty, critical parts are over...I'm finding this an interesting story. Although the starting situation of the plot is a well recognised cliche (righteous wrong-doer busted out from prison by rebels to help their cause) your carrying it off well. The fact Riley has managed to hold onto what are obviously quite refined values and has a background hinted to be aristocratic makes her quite different from the usual convicts on the run/given a second chance in fantasy stories.
improvisationallychallenged chapter 1 . 11/10/2008
For the review game:

Opening/Ending: the opening for this story is good. The location, the events, and the tantalising dribbles of information we get about Riley, and the crimes she's committed all worked excellently as hooks to keep me reading. The ending of the chapter was a little sparse, and slightly jarring. It would have been good to know who said 'Welcome to the Roanoke,' and perhaps even what Riley thought/felt rather than just what she saw.

Pace: Very good. Things are happening, and happening fast, without seeming ludicrous or sketchy. The balance between action and backstory (always a pain in opening chapters/prologues, i find...) is compelling and informative without leaving me either clueless, or bombarded with information.

Dialogue: Again, good. The conversation (if you can call it that) between Riley and the Commander felt appropriate for the situation. One small gripe - despite hoping to keep her identity a secret from her liberators/new captors, she does not seem particularly upset/nervous/at all reactionary when they easily suss out her name.

Writing: Because this is the first chapter, it's always hard to judge on elements such as writing, plot ect, that are going to change and evolve through the rest of the story - but I'm going to have a crack at it anyway. Not to be harsh, but I feel like there's something missing. As it's a first draft, this is understandable, but there are bits where greater description as to what's happening, what can be heard, smelt, seen, ect, through Riley's pov, would really suck a reader into this world you're creating. I think the opening lines would particularly benefit from this, as the descriptions of 'distant shouts' and 'incoherent yelling' feel a little bit vague and slapdash compared to some lovely detail you go into later in the chapter, when Riley is being escorted out of the prison by the soldiers.
Kinderwhore chapter 3 . 11/9/2008
The pacing of your story is very good, particularly the way you handle the unfolding of Riley's past, teasing the reader with little hints and insinuations without QUITE giving anything away. I struggle with this, and what's more I've seen published authors struggle with this too, either telling too little or too much, so congratulations on striking the right balance!

Your characterization is also very strong and consistent. Riley is definitely a character with depth; I particularly liked how she WANTS to care about Sanctia's independence, rather than just flat-out caring. It makes it seem as though that, for her, this is the beginning of an emotional/intellectual journey for her, and you certainly don't see that everyday. :D

Your writing so far is of a very high standard, but for some reason this chapter felt a little... sparse to me. What bothers me is the absence of detail and description. Now, I find paragraph long descriptions as annoying as the next person, but there were times in this chapter when I felt that a few more adjectives would flesh out the situation more. For example, you describe that some of the people on deck "wore full Sanctian regalia, complete with swords" but besides the swords, we don't know what the uniform actually looks like.

Typo I noticed: "She was also wearing a leather flight helmet and had a pair of goggles hanging around a neck."

She has more than one neck? O.O

Overall, good work!
HighPixelPriestess chapter 20 . 11/7/2008
Woah. That was my inital reaction when I reached the end of that chapter. That was all my pathetic mind could come up with today. Right...

The romance begins! Or so I take it. When I first started reading this story, several hours ago, the last person I would have thoguht the romance would be between is Remington and Riley. Now, when it comes down to it - I like it. They are both hardend individuals with a trouble past. The relationship between them is beleivable and its refreshing from all the war and battles. Perhaps I'm just a freak, but it's like a fresh breath of air :)

I find it hard to understand Cal. I feel like he needs fleshing out to understand WHY he is such of a, ah..."mean guy". Is he mad with power, or does he want to be mad with power? He comes across to me, like a naughty boy who likes to kill bugs for a hobby.

This chapter kept my heart beating. It was enjoyable to read - it wasn't all action, dialoge or all romance. It had some perfect mix that works well for your story. I find so far your story doesn't just go through the motions for too long - it breaks into an exciting battle, or an extremly intriguing love seen. It's a good mix, really :)

The ending was a painful cliffhanger, while I'm aware there are more chapters, I find it so hard to sit and write a review, as opposed to just resuming reading along. I didnt intend to read the whole story when I started, heck, I didn't expect to like it. But it has nestled into my chest somewhere and isn't coming out anytime soon. It was a cruel, cruel place to stop. Either way, it is sure effective in keeping your readers interested.
HighPixelPriestess chapter 7 . 11/7/2008
The descriptions of the miners worked well. From what I understand, the aether they mine slowly kills them in the worst ways possible. I do wonder about other things about the miners - such as what are they wearing(normal clothes, or clothing ripped to shreds?), are they starved and thin or taken care of?

I do wonder why they need so many guards to a group of men and women, especially if the Guards carry rifles and the workers seem so weak? Do they revolt? Or do they just do as they are told.

At one stage it was a little confusing on who was speaking. I was aware Granny was speaking to someone, but it took a littl while to understand if it was Riley or Snow. It is here:

Granny was leaning against the flyer next to hers and caught her eye. “We’re all ready for battle, but not many have flown so far away from the Roanoke before. It’s kind of like being able to hide behind your mother if the game gets too rough.”

“What about you?”

He shrugged. “I was in the military before the Norovian war even started. There’s not much I haven’t experienced before. A lot of these guys never saw a day of that war and for some Galkava was their first real battle.”

“Me too.”

“I figured as much. You look a little too young to have fought in the war.”

It is apparent that they are being gased and knocked out, yes. Why? I'm not sure, perhaps there was a gas leak - but surely they must have been able to tell before being knocked out. I'm sitting here wondering what this gas is. Is it from the aether? Is that what is poisoning the miners?

I'm still really enjoying the story though. The mystery and originality of it all has sucked me in big time, I think I'll be hanging around until the end :)
HighPixelPriestess chapter 6 . 11/6/2008
It is hard to realise what is happening when Riley has her flashback, it took me two or three attempts of figuring what happend. Perhaps it is intentional, but I thought it may be worthwhile to point it out. However, so far it looks like she has been perhaps caught doing something, or an execution? Although if she is being executed, I'm not sure why there needs to be multiple guns.

While I'm not currently irritated/worried about it, I'm beginning to wonder where the story is heading at the moment. Although, the mystery of Riley leaves me hanging on to find out who this girl/woman is, I'm still wondering what the ultimate goal of the story is - do they wish to overthrow the Empress? Or do they just want to protect themselves, as I thought I understood before.

The relationship between Riley and Snow is a curious one. I've been wondering if they are 'destined' to fall in love with each other, or stay platonic. They seem to become closer throughout this much of the story and I'm still curious to see how they will play out.

Sometimes I feel that the story lacks a little description, more so what everything looks like. I had a little trouble working out things throughout the story, like aether, the flyers and so forth. For awhile I mistook the flyers to actually *be* aethers, but how could they mine those?
HighPixelPriestess chapter 2 . 11/6/2008
I found it a little weird how the Title "King" would show he is under another empire. I would have gussI usually interpreted King as in the ultimate ruler of a kingdom. It doesn't appear important enough to the plot to worry about it, though.

Spelling & look like you are on the top of your game! :) Although, it looks like you've been writing for awhile, so thats to no surprise!

It intrigues me why Snowden is gentle when he removes her restraints. It leads me wondering if there will be romance between the two, or if it is irrelevant.

The pace seems good so far. Information is given with enough time between to digest everything and information that is relevant to the current plot is revealed, yet still leaving interesting bits to be filled.

I love you story so far :). It's something I haven't really seen before, with hints of information about Riley's past that keep you wondering (and interested in reading). I'm sitting here wondering on where the story of Riley is going to lead.
groovi-gal-numba1 chapter 1 . 11/6/2008
PLOT: quite interesting. i mean its early days yet, but atm it seems quite origonal. you don't see this type of thing in fictionpress too often. its kinda scary too! haha.

WRITING: i have to say, its WAY to short! what is it, like 10 words? i prefur to read chapters that are about 40 or so. bulk it up a bit! it will make you readers much more excited when theres an update! Your writing style is quite good. Nice descriptions, with good word choice, which painted a good picture.

CHARACTERS: well its too early to say anything too much about it, other than my first impression is a good one! riley seems very strong, and witty but quite troubled. it will be fun watching her develop.

ENJOYMENT: yes i did enjoy this! the mood that you set up kept me quite interested as i read. but as i said, i would get more enjoyment out of it if it were longer. keep up the good work!

Elf Ear chapter 5 . 11/4/2008
LOL! "ah help!" cracked me up twice!
Ferrett chapter 23 . 11/2/2008
DAMN. I've enjoyed it so far, but why do I feel as though you're about to notch it up another gear? The mpress scene made me whimper, it was that good. Rock on.
Lana Sky chapter 23 . 11/2/2008
I do admit that Riley and Rem's relationship seemed...weird, but other than that I thought the story was overall very well put together if it is a first draft.

I can't wait for the next update!

Happy Writings,

Lana Sky chapter 17 . 11/2/2008
I loved the little interlude between Riley and dear Remmy. I only wish that it lasted a teensy bit longer. ;D

Lana Sky chapter 14 . 11/2/2008
This story is comming along very nicely, and the teeny cliff hangers at the end of every chapter make me automatically hit the "next chappy" button, but there is one thing that I just don't get.

Why did she kill her brother? Sibs are annoying, trust me I know but no matter how annoyed you get at them, I just can't see anyone pulling out a pistol, and putting a bullet through his head and having no regret/and or emotion about it what so ever. Am I missing something? Cousins? maybe but Brothers? No. Maybe I'm just not reading thouroughly enough?

I tottaly loved this chapter but...dude, come on...Doc? I can't help but picture him as the old drawf from "Snow White" and then I pass out in a giggle fit! Ohh...geez.

Other than my own quirky thoughts, I find nothing wrong in this chapter. Nice way to bring everything to a boiling point! Oh my, oh my!

Happy Writings!

Efreisone chapter 23 . 11/2/2008
She can purify flawed aether... interesting. If that power gets stronger, she'd be valuable enough that Grams wouldn't dare off her. Excited to see where you're gonna go with this :)

"'Be very cautious around this man,' the Empress said." It took me a minute to figure out that this was about Rem being a copperblood. The only thing that's confusing me is why this is a concern. Cal obviously has the upper hand here, what with apparently being a zombie, so why is Rem anything to be worried about?

I definitely agree with what you've got on the major changes list. Cordon had me sorta muddled, and I feel like the relationship between Rem and Riley is a bit robotic. EXCEPT for the scene where it's raining and he wants to shoot her. That's my absolute favorite chapter thus far.

If you're looking for more things to fix, I would work on developing your supporting characters. People like Snow and Doc aren't much more than props on the stage, and I feel like they just get thrown in whenever they're useful. They don't have any lasting impact on the story or the other characters, and that bothers me a little.
Rhapsody's Song chapter 23 . 11/2/2008
ooh! cool development! please keep going!
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