|Reviews for The Minda Verda School|
| Respect Is Sexy chapter 3 . 9/25/2007
The only thing that these characters all seem to have in common is the conviction that All Strangers Equal Rovers Equal Bad Bad. Problematic since you still haven't explained that concept. The Rovers, that is.
"There were some people Cesca just didn’t care about all that much. Mark was amongst them." Ouch.
Oh, now yet another new concept introduced. Ghoblins. I assume explanations will be forthcoming eventually.
"One would’ve thought that two years spent alone in semi-dangerous woods constantly watching one’s back would’ve hypothetically sharpened one’s senses of things such as being intensely scrutinized from a few feet away, but alas, no"
“No. Is that-?”
The ONE RING TO RULE THEM ALL.
...had to do it.
“How are you ‘sort of’ kidnapped?’”
“This never came up? First day of preschool, she came out of nowhere and took a bite out of my arm. Completely unprovoked.”
"Take apart her" is clunky. It appears to work in context, but alas I still feel "take her apart" just sounds better.
“You might want to put your clothes back on.” That's what she said.
"And as tragic as that was it was, it was" Okay, major pronoun-verb rapeage here. Happens to the best of us.
Excellent chapter, can't wait for the next one!
| Zozma chapter 3 . 9/23/2007
Sorry I didn't get to this more posthaste like. I'm sure there was a myriad of little electronic hints of Mindy V's update that slipped under my noticed, it's tricky like that. But here I am, eager toi read and review another illustrative and enticing masterpiece.
Also, your word count is 6,6. I think that's awesome, and proof that you have benefitial, if not entirely benevolent, cosmic approval.
"There wasn’t a lot of framework to compare such fragile things as dreams to these days."
Powerful line. Possibly powerful enough to cause spontaneous and miraculous conception, I dunno, we'll have to wait for Tracey.
"That was the problem with tangents. If she let them go far enough they always went to the same place, somewhere drippy-maudlin and utterly unsuited to the mind frame she required just now."
Nice, an introspective look at a new character providing dozens of little insightful personality tibbits, enviornmental stress, as well as an introduction. All in one go, too.
"Squelching her ramblings to rise as silently as possible from her seat to the door, Cesca was momentarily horrified to glimpse a stranger striding down corridor."
Kickass. A brief and well articulated moment of tension quelled before it can fester and enroach over the reader, but long lasting enough to give us even more personality and environmental stress. I'm probably reading way too much into this, but even if none of this was all that intentional you've managed to subtely and unwittingly create a brilliant pallete of emotions. Or maybe I just like using words in reviews I can't normally in real life, who knows?
"her, all strangers were Rovers, a justified if less-than-well-reasoned paranoia."
Ooh, Rovers. A post-apocalyptic term, no doubt, the exact meaning we're soon to find out eventually. Maybe there's Super Mutants, like in Fallout! Also post-apocalyptic prostitutesm like in Fallout. Of course, neither of us have ever played Fallout, so that's unlikely.
Ildri is a nice last name. Kinda balances the meh-ness of a first name like Mark.
"Cesca felt ambivalent towards this -, and she would deal with that later."
This just goes to show how horrible I am at remembering your characters' names and traits. Cesca doesn't ring a bell.
You're establishing the post-apocalyptic desperation exceptionally well, which is absolutely essential to the atmosphere. Most writers would assume that if you take away society from man completely and return them to their primitive roots that'd be much more traumatic, but you understand that it's far more effective to give them just barely functioning and sparse technology for them to cling to like a life raft. I'm all profound n' shit today. Incdently, this is going to take me forever :)
Precon, eh? That sounds like something that'd pop up again somewhere, but perhaps not. As always, the intergration of apocalypse and happy-go-lucky-angsty-teens is a nice touch.
I remember the shields. I was always kinda iffy on the idea, truth be told, it seems like something of a cop out. Don't listen to me, though, I do write a story about *magic* after all.
Though I can't speak for my fellow readers, I'm becomingly increasingly interested with exactly what state the world governments' are in at the moment, probably fueled by the total lack of information on the subject. Are there still militaries? Why bother? Isn't the world basically destroyed? A lot of interesting questions.
Ghoblins establishment? A pre-war video arcade or a post war supply depot? So much mystique, none of it very feminine but still dripping in Enigma.
Ah, a bowling alley. Hurray for leaps of logic.
"The day’s task accomplished Cesca allowed all the recent events -other things that could make a girl miserable."
A perfect, if depressing, example of Sarah Style.
"One would’ve thought that two years - disappear upon making such a discovery as the one confronting Mark."
I've already overused the more cliche compliments like "brilliant" and "wonderful," so here's a lengthy list of all the less-used literary praises that describe this paragraph: Marvelous, glorious, magneficient, fantastic, amazing, awe-inspiring, fabulous, incredible, pimptastic, bitchin', the bee's knees, boss, and the shit. I think that about covers it.
I detest your superior vocabulary :(
"She held up in front of her, shield-like, a worn bag, its cross still faintly emblazoned red."
Chekhov's Gun or just post apocalypse accesorizying? Either way, nice visual.
"It gleamed in the light, painfully reminiscent of other times and places and things that would have to be attended to as soon as probable."
Absolutely beautiful, luv. Profoundly so.
“It’s the old fashioned stuff, it’s going to hurt.”
A very nice touch. Nothing ever goes quite right in a post-apocalyptic world.
“I’ve been through worse.” Not wanting her to question what that’d been exactly-"
Getting pistol whipped by a Freshman, obviously.
Katietotal rover hazing badass.
"Our little Katie seems to have gotten pretty hardcore.”
“I have a staff? Cool. Calling her that’s frowned upon these days though. ”
Aww, they're still human. A nice reminder and testement to character.
"No, actually, I wasn’t. It’s not a good story.”
We do *not* give pretentious egomaniacs ammunition to angst, Sarah!
“Oh, that. That is a good story actually. That’s how I met Gretch.”
Really an awesome line, though I'm torn between whether it has better timining here or later on when Gretch becomes more familiar.
"Quiet you. So I hit her back and got blood all over the carpet, and we were both expelled. Obviously we were best friends ever after. Anyways, that’s my version of it. She’s… not around to give her’s, is she"
I'm pretty sure this was from the old version, and I love it as much now as I did back then.
“Oh, Gretchen. We never knew if she was taking apart the world, or if it was going to take apart her.”
Mark needs a swift kick in the bollocks, courtesy of Peter. And Katie.
Usually I hate writing a bunch of dialogue without any character citations and some action inbetween, but you pulled it off stunningly. Haven't even noticed it really, you know whose talking at all times, the timing and pacing and pausing, everything. Spectacular job.
“You might want to put your clothes back on.”
That's what she s- . . ! Sorry . . .
"Outside the kitchen Darian and Tristan both greeted Mark warmly, which was as characteristic for one as it was un- for the other."
A little choppy, but still really nice. I don't remember a Darian at all.
"And Jol could take anything but losing Tes.”
"And as tragic as that was it was, it was hardly uncommon enough to elicit any more than a sad quiet moment in either of them."
A lot of feeling and form there. Good work.
"There was no point pretending to say that it was alright, that he was fine, that it would be okay. They were both beyond lying."
Paramount of power and emotion. And well, placed, too, with all the "Life sucks!" dialogue leading up to it.
"There were several other former-students there, but a significant part of the Minda Verda community now seemed to be composed of drifters drawn from the surrounding areas, creating a motley cross section of every demographic with the no-longer-startling absence of people much over thirty. Most of the people born before a certain year had been particularly vulnerable to one of the plagues that sometimes swept through, and it wasn’t like there was anyone available to properly look into that."
Good exposition, but I think a little unthought out. If there are any adults at all near thirty it would stand to reason that they'd try and seize power from the others, as is the wont of adult figures to do in both real life and fiction. I mean, the group's still young, right? Around ninteen-ish? Kind of a stretch to assume more aged pilgrims would just bow down to their stellar examples of charisma and leadership, no?
"Upon Mark’s entry Cesca raised one eyebrow at KT, who shrugged. Their skills as conversationalists had undergone a vast simplification, but there was a comfort in sitting next to each other"
Another one from the beta, and one I still adore.
"so much time spent alone the number of people at dinner made him uncomfortable regardless."
1. I'm sure I don't have to tell you again how awesome of a paragraph this is.
2. Mark will have fewer ocassions to be pretentious, yay . . .
"Bidding a casual good night to the assemblage Mark slipped off into the night, not without a promise to still be there the next morning. - A name and a date and something trite."
Godly, with no other way to put it. Simply amazing. Great foreshadowing, flow, feeling, and depth. It's like a cocktail of awesome.
"Mark gave in to the desire to fall -while longer."
Also good, but highly sappy. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing, sometimes life's just like that. I assume Laura is dead, which will make the lovey dovey moments between the past Mark and her quite unsatisfactory :P.
Absolutely amazing chapter, luv, and harsh competition for the prior ones. Possibly your best, but an eventual re-read will have to answer that question for me in the future. I'd like to add, for the record, that this bugger is a whomping four pages long, the exposition of which is kinda like leaving a price tag on a birthdya present only acceptable because it's me doing it.
| Zozma chapter 2 . 8/24/2007
This is Zozma, and this is Zozma's review full of relentless praise and cronstructive criticism. But mostly relentless praise.
Again, I like the shuffling between the "Oh my God, the cute boy doesn't like me!" angst and the "Oh my God, the world has ended and I strive to survive every suffering moment!" angst.
It's good to see that people are as much of an ass to Mark as Mark is to others. I apologize that even now I don't remember who Kim is; possibly she was Tristan's girlfriend but beyond that I can't guess either way.
I once met a Scandanavian mutant vampire pirate ninja elf. He was non-surprisingly a pretentious jackass. And rightfully so!
Incidently, did you decide to just change the standard "The world is not your oyster" phrase, or is clam a frequently reoccurring mistake?
"They would soon make apparent that their maturity perhaps left something to be desired."
Ooh, foreshadowing. Kind of.
"Or so she might’ve hoped, until realizing that the computer was requesting, in its harsh computer way, a password. Which she did not have."
I've always found your style to be quite curious, but not been able to put into words as to quite how unique it is. It's simultaneouslyly brilliant and funny, but also defiantly . . . adorable. I use that word quite liberally, I know, but it really, really applies here. It's distinctly feminine, I hope you don't mind me saying, with a lot of natural charisma in both your descriptions and characters. Humor is like feather soft in some areas and hard and blunt in others. It's unique and ingenious, and a pleasure to read from start to finish. It;s a pleasant bit of Sarah in a age where her presence is becoming increasingly rare. (hint hint)
Right, I'm a few paragraphs in and already I'm bowing to your abilities. Which is what I do every time, but more profoundly so.
Kerri couldn’t really throw much of anything at anyone.
I still utterly adore you for this line.
Gretchen comes off as pretentious. Pretentious in a more positive way than Mark, but still pretentious.
"Kerri was caught between righteous indignation at this girl’s caustic treatment and the thrill of having not only noticed but actually paid attention to for several minutes at a time. This was a fairly rare event in Kerri’s life."
Great first sentence. Blah second sentence. It's ugly and redundant. Just thought I'd throw that in there since everything else is just praise.
“You look a little bit like a strawberry. It’s cute.”
Still an awesome interaction.
So Kim is Tristan's boyfriend. I'm awesome in my accuracy.
Yes or yeah, which is less childish?
“Well, Tristan can tell you all about that, can’t you Tris?”
"And they said my name was pretentious?"
Scratch that. You're a goddess.
And thus is a love triangle formed. Tristan loves Kim. Kim loves Tristan. There's probably some feelings for Mark with Kim, as everyone seems to have feelings more Mark which are more or less unjustified. Mark is clearly not Zozma any more, as Zozma manages to be good looking and quite a nice guy at the same time.
"Mark looked her over again, looking so much as though he was tempted to voice his doubts as to the veracity of that statement"
Thereby reasserting himself yet again as Group Asshole.
Your vocabulary is diverse and appropriate, luv, good work.
"Do the cryptic ambushes ever stop around here?"
What silliness. There's only been one cryptic ambush prior to that, and t was KT's doing.
“I…” have no idea what to make of you… “’m looking for someone.”
I also improve of Katie's recent Freshmanizing, though I was recently under the false presumption that Mark would eventually fall for Katie and have unwholesome fourteen on sixteen relations.
The ending was good, better than last time, I think, but odd cut-offs are what you get for split chapters. Amazing as always, luv, and I'm sorry your reviewership is less than stellar at the moment. I've come to the conclusion that the happy, grinning nods my local friends accompany positive remarks to propositions to read and review your work are mostly to appear aesthetically pleasing, as is rare state of appearances for teenagers in Illinois. Still, you've always got a dedicated reviewer in me despite how sparse and sporadic your presence becomes.
| Respect Is Sexy chapter 2 . 8/24/2007
So I'm guessing you got my review in the facebook PM? :-) I'm glad you're still updating and such, and I hope you're doing well. If this review gets cut off, I shall send it to you the same way.
The art rooms are housing livestock? Oy.
"Well, they could’ve been Scandinavian mutant vampire pirate ninja elves, but within the realm of possibility, no, they could not have been farther."
Kerri is racist against scandinavians!
Unfortunately, your story is developing a mild case of First Letter Syndrome, which basically means that with the general complexity and whatnot I'm having trouble keeping Kim, Kerri, and KT straight.
I would really love to see how a word such as "mfft" could be squeaked. I totally thought that squeaking was something you needed vowels for.
Ahahaha, poor Kerri is a strawberry and it's wonderful. Gretchen cracks me up.
Okay, so Kerri KT. And I'm guessing Kim also Kim. I think I've got a grip on what's flashback and what isn't, but it might do you well to clarify. Italics work wonders towards that end, annoying as they can be in excess.
And Mark, he doesn't count. Lovely xD
Now, THIS is aggravating. Kerri KT Katie. Kim is somebody else. You're doing this just to upset us.
Really, though, outside of the first letter syndrome and some flashback confusion, this is a huge upgrade over the original in terms of clarity. It's very spiffy that you've improved over how you were doing just a few months ago, so conggrats.
“So, getting in with the best clique right in the beginning?”
Now, this I disapprove of. Strongly. One of the worst things you can possibly do in a high-school novel is make cliques completely unsubtle and official and openly discussed among the students as if they were extracurricular activities. And believe me, this is a COMMON mistake. Please remember, as so many have forgotten, that cliquey people NEVER admit that they are cliquey.
That there at the end is the best segue I have ever seen in my life.
This was an excellent chapter! I can't wait for more!
| Respect Is Sexy chapter 1 . 8/14/2007
If this gets cut off, never fear: I'll post it on your wall or something.
I am reviewing you, yes I am! I couldn't leave you languishing with only one review .
Ah, the armed guard.
"someone who was no doubt something like their leader" you sound very certain in your uncertainty.
"Some people take better to apocalypses than others" I
| Zozma chapter 1 . 8/7/2007
Okay, so I lied. I actually went to bed fully intending to cover this tommorow but then I couldn't sleep. Yes, your story has the power to keep me up at night, even after mispelling "school." For shame, Sarah.
Right, so I recall the opening two paragraphs. Still uttlerly astonishing in it's quality and delivery, by the way, but I wonder how much of this is from the original?
"Some people take better to apocalypses than others, - well testify to"
This line really stuck out like a diamond among dust. Or, in your case, a diamond among pearls and opals. I adore you in your brilliance.
"Regardless there were currently no zombie warlords, and that was always a plus."
When I leave school without encountering a zombie warlord I know I that, for at least a day, the world is a safe place.
I've really got to applaud you, Sarah. Every paragraph is an expertly woven, intrinsically formed masterpiece of genius, relaying emotion and thought without fail every time.
"The same cold fear that had *griped* him since he planned."
Nevermind. The lack of an extra "p" totally ruins it. Sorry. Not interested anymore :P.
Poor Mark. He's come a long way from staring down boys at bowling alleys.
Once again, how do you do it? The last sentece of that paragraph is utter literary gold. Your brilliance never ceases to amaze me.
My my, has Katie grown up. I remember a Katie who never thought she would reach fifteen, let alone go around making demands of said age group.
Mark is officially a stupid chauvinistic bastard even in this version. Even now he refuses to accept K.T as a close friend and believes her as an obstacle on the way to "the people he truly loves." Friggin bastard.
Aww, you decided to incorporate pre apocalypse into post apocalypse. Very clever, and I approve heartily.
"Additionally, we shall sometimes speak as though we were British if it so pleases us. Sometimes it helps to be British when composing a flashback, so that no one gets confused."
As lovely and fourth wall breaking as before, Sarah, only even moreso as I've noticed it's been further improved upon.
"are smattering with hideous glee across the car window"
Not exactly bad personification, but it is something of a stain compared to the rest of your glistening brilliance. I probably oughtn't to have noted my dissaproval, because now you might take to over analyzing all of your similies and metaphors for quality, which you needn't do at all.
She liked it when the weather reflected her mood.-To Kerri’s everlasting chagrin.
Were I not already stowed away in your basment charged needlessly with a life of flattery and ass kissing, I myself would spirit you away to some subterran domicide and force you to write for me until armageddon really does come about. Then I will compare your work to it for authenticity and accuracy, because I'm an ass like that.
”Uh, Ann, do you think you could maybe for a minute show me arou-?” -to. “And you are?”
God, you are so bloody amazing. Baring in mind that you still did the quotes from two different sources thing I hate so much, you've somehow managed to improve exponentially beyond what was already such an amazing, inspired work. I really don't know how you do it, sarah, but it's awe inspiring.
The ever tense Mrs. Landon, hmm? She must have not met Professor Zozma. Is she based on a particular someone? Speaking of cameos, I've almost reached yours after months of planning and hyping it.
"It was like summer sleep away camp, only with an eerily air of permanence."
"Personalities were easy to tell from posters, but what did the complete lack of them say?"
More to the point, what does an oft mentioned Underworld Trenchoat Vampire Chik poster say about a person? "I wish our lives were switched?" perhaps? :P
"‘We aren’t allowed to tape things to the walls,’ perhaps?"
I like how you, probably unintentionally, made a seemingly lack of creative thought so . . . creatively thougtful.
"The space wasn’t really her own yet and it made her a little anxious to sit there alone."
An interesting and clever observation.
Although I admit it is slightly unrealistic for a girl whose achieved multiple honor level classes and, if canon remains, a formidable philosphical background to lament her potential for success in comparasion to her sister's. Just a small possible plot hole to balance out the fact that everything I said thus far has bordered worship.
"Everyone looked up at the opening door; everyone resumed what they were doing when they saw who it was. Or rather, who it wasn’t: Anyone important."
A very sad but immensely clever line, and an unreasonably good one to leave off on. Excellent chapter, Sarah. Ingenious, even.
Wait, so, if I wasn't around, good things would be more likely to happen? I'm sure I know what you mean :P, and you're a sweetheart.