Reviews for Ascension: Ad Initium, Ad Finem
AvidWriter-92 chapter 4 . 7/3/2010
Ah, I loved this chapter. Loved, loved, loved it! :D

I thought that the descriptions were really well done. The city that they live in sounds really beautiful at night time. :)

I liked the whole Caleb and Melanie part. :D It was really well done, and made me smile. :)

I hope that Caleb doesn't get into too much trouble! I wonder how they will sneak away. :P The plot thickens! :D

Great chapter, Dante. :)

~Avid. Roadhouse.
AvidWriter-92 chapter 3 . 7/3/2010
Oh, I liked this chapter a lot. :D

I thought that the interactions between Melanie and Caleb were cute. :P They were really well done. :)

Oh, man. I love Ferris. He's such a character. lol. I'm glad you made him the "comedic" guy. I mean, who else would want their bar to have walls destroyed and people in fights besides an old "pirate?" :P

I am very curious as to what "secrets" Caleb has... Hm. :P

I loved the bar fight scene. :) It was pretty hilarious to read, and I liked all of the descriptions. It painted a picture in my head. I also liked how Caleb stuck up for Melanie. :P That was cute. :)

Something tells me that danger lurks around the corner, since Caleb isn't going home right away...

~Avid. Roadhouse. 11/11. :D
AvidWriter-92 chapter 2 . 7/3/2010
Hey, Dante. :)

I really liked this chapter for two reasons. One being how realistic you described everything, and two the characters. :P

I think that you set the reader up very well with the setting, and such. The descriptions weren't too over the top, and the backstory of where Caleb, Cera and Caine live was realistic, and again, not too much at one time. You have a good way of balancing description and dialogue, I think. :)

I really enjoyed the characters, esp Caleb. He's sarcastic, and I like how he had an opinion about the mayor convincing the people of Alceria to switch their government. :P I also really like his interactions with Caine and Cera. Even though he says he hates them, I have a feeling that in the later chapters, he's going to realize how important they are in his life. :P

Great job, Dante. :) I didn't find anything negative that I can comment on, except to make sure that when another person is speaking, make it a new paragraph. (But that's just a minor thing. :P)

~Avid. Roadhouse (10/11)
AvidWriter-92 chapter 1 . 6/30/2010
Hey, Dante. :)

I gotta say, I think I’m in love with this story already… :D

I felt like all the descriptions were done really well, and they told a story without sounding forced or anything. It flowed very well because of the descriptions and the pace that you set. Good job on that! :)

There was two things that this chapter reminded me of… One would be the mythological bird the Phoenix. I felt like throughout the chapter, the narrator knew what was going to happen to him, so it goes along with the whole rebirth thing.

The other thing is a mythological story of the guy that made a pair of wings to fly with, but then he enjoyed his freedom too much and got too close to the sun. His wings burned up, and he crashed into the ocean. I felt like the ending of this chapter reflected that story to almost a T. :)

I don’t really know what else to say except that this was excellent. I couldn’t find any mistakes at all, so you surely know your stuff! :D

Great job, and I’m curious as to see where this story is headed…

~Avid. Roadhouse. :D

(9/11)
lookingwest chapter 6 . 6/23/2010
From RH/WRR:

First part-

Alceria didn't have too many celebrations and festivities, really.

-Style Edit: would omit the "really"

The Town Square itself was the most impressive of all, however.

-Style Edit: "The Town Square itself, however, was the most impressive of all."

...it would have been too easy to lose her in the crowd.

-Hmm, well placed foreshadow perhaps? I am now fully alert!

Ah, glad that you spend time describing the Mayor from Caleb's perspective and his description. I think you described him well, and I liked how you focused it around the bold word "shiny" which you set apart wisely by a colon, it will now be the one thing the reader remembers too.

It wasn't Heale that had caught my eye, however.

-Style Edit: "It wasn't Heale, however, that caught my eye."

...were unlike anyone I'd ever seen before.

-Style Edit: would omit "before" because that's implied

...think I'd have seen him around before.

-Style Edit: would omit "before" for the same reasons as above, and because if you choose to keep the one above, it risks sounded redundant

The other three contrasted with him horribly, however.

-Style Edit: "The other three, however, contrasted horribly with him."

Hmm, the description of these newcomers has definitley sparked my interest, I'm very curious to learn more about your world, so I enjoyed seeing it displayed here in the comfort zone of Alceria. I can't wait to see if Caleb will get out of here, just so we can learn more. You're definitley teasing the reader with this bit, and it's very successful, it leaves me wanting to know more.

However, it was their eyes that gave them away.

-Style Edit: "It was their eyes, however, that have them away."

...studying their features carefully before moving on to another.

-Style Edit: "...studying their features carefully before [focusing on] another."

I could tell that the girl was at the end of her…

-Style Edit: clause ended awkwardly...it felt like you stopped writing mid-sentence and just threw in an ellipses o.O End of her what? Rope? That's not a bad word or anything, so I'm confused to why you didn't finish it

...I knew that she was exhausted.

-Style Edit: would omit "that"

Aw, Caleb seems to be a hopeless romantic, quite a nice bit of well deserved awe towards Mel. She had me worried for a second, I thought he was going to get jumped, haha. Overall good first part, drew me in again, and I'm glad that you wove in the bonding experience with Ceruia into the bit about the foreigners. I think it gave me as a reader the proper hints to know that you're working with a large arcing plot and you have lots of fun in store.

Second part-

"...Don't worry so much, Cal…,"

-Edit: omit the comma after the ellipses

And yay, they're finally confirming their willingness to leave. I wish Ceruia wasn't there, because I feel some bad stuff might happen when Cal gets home. If they made it home free I'll be dazzled O:

"...tell my parents I'm going to bring Caine too. I…,"

-Edit: omit comma after the ellipses

-And aw craptards -_- Mr. Caleb The Hero.

"I love you. I'll see you after I handle thing, and we can leave. Alright?"

-Edit: I think "this" should be inserted between "handle" and "thing"

Stupid Caine. Bah. Anyway, good way to take the chapter in a turn I didn't see coming. I totally thought the conflict would involve his Father, but who knows, there's still more to this story, haha. Enjoying so far!
lookingwest chapter 5 . 6/23/2010
From RH/WRR

Normally I sulk around opening descriptive scenes, but your description of Caleb's mother was amazing and deserves much applause. I liked it a lot, I love the way you chose your verbs, like "glided" and the metaphor to the wilting flower. It was tinged with sadness, I enjoyed getting a look into both her and his Father.

...him when I wasn't at the C&B or taking care of the kids.

- [insert comment about abbreviation confusion] I'm starting to feel like you're right and I'm wrong now, XD, which yeah, might be the case, so I apologize for continuing to bring it up. I'm too eager to wait patiently for a review reply, haha.

I was only about half an hour off out of schedule, what the hell did they think had happened.

-Edit: needs to end in a question mark

"I'm fine. ..."

-Style Edit: would italicize instead of bold "fine"

Oh I had to cut him off at this point...

-Style Edit: would insert comma after "Oh"

And geez, you make a really convincing argument from Caleb's father's POV. I mean, I was wondering how you would manage to twist his perspective into attacking Caleb when really nothing went wrong and Caleb really didn't *do* anything, especially because he could have easily blamed it at the bar and his job. I'm pleasantly surprised that I feel Caleb's frustration in the way that his father is able to twist his words and make it sound like he actually *did* do something wrong. Those damn parents. :/

"...With Melanie. We KISSED. ..."

-Style Edit: would italicize "kiss" instead of putting it in all-caps

When Caleb finally bursts, it's interesting to see him being so selfish, just because as a reader, we've only known him for this one day out of his entire life. It seems to me that he implies he's been pretty selfless for his entire life, so I mean, I whole heartedly agree that he deserves to leave, but it's just strange to see him hate his siblings so much when the only thing I know about them is what I saw that morning. I wonder how Caine will be raised once Caleb is gone-now that he would technically be the next eldest son.

A sneer settled in on his lips, one I wanted to punch off of his face.

-Style Edit: would omit "of"

"you know I'm just messin' around with you, right?"

-Edit: "You" needs to be capitalized

I had crossed a line, I knew that much…

-Style Edit: the phrase "I knew that much" is redundant because you already said it once in this paragraph, so this second time, it sticks out. I would just omit it.

...as I half expected my father to come bursting in.

-Edit: make a decision on whether or not you wan to always capitalize Father and Mother, or not, because you've been going back and forth in this chapter already.

"And by a while," She interjected. "you mean since you were a boy. ..."

-Edit: un-capitalize "She" and capitalize "You"

"she was the only person that didn't..."

-Edit: capitalize "She"

...will, I continued on.

-Edit: omit "on"

...better than my father could.

-Edit: cap it or don't cap it, but you just cap-ed "Dad" in the previous clause

"...you two are apparently 'having relations…,"

-Edit: omit the comma

-Edit: add single quote after "relations" so you don't leave it hanging with "having". So like: "...are apparently 'having relations'..."

Caleb's Mom is awesome, nuff' said.

Aw, sweet ending. It left me wondering if Caleb will actually go through with leaving.

I hope that he does :D

Overall this was a solid chapter and it fleshed out more of Caleb's family situation, including bringing his day to an end. It wasn't as climactic as I would have expected because you continued into the next day, but I think you ended the next day scene with Ceruia wonderfully, as stated. There were just a few minor errors with dialogue tags, but nothing involving the dialogue itself, which I thought stayed realistic and consistent.
lookingwest chapter 4 . 6/22/2010
From RH/WRR

Or is it the undead?

-Edit: Try to stay past, should be: "Or [was] it the undead?"

...which is why there weren't too many people that chose to wander the streets after dark.

-Edit: stay past, should be: "...which [was] why..."

Melanie seemed to share my regard, because after we left from the C&B...

-Edit: I'm now seriously confused, XD, this is the third name you've given the Skull and Crossbones. Is it S&C, S&B, or C&B? Pick one, and stick with it, otherwise reader's are like, "but, where is that? I thought they were at the...". :D

Yet another reason that I regret getting a job instead of going to school.

-Edit: stay in past tense, should be: "Yet another reason I [regretted] getting a job instead of going to school."

-Edit: would omit "that" too

I liked Caleb's reflection about how he's worried things will soon get awkward, I admit, that's very realistic and easy to relate to, I think, for a lot of readers. At least for me-I remember thinking some of the same things when I first held hands with a guy.

Realizing that she was revealing her less than confident thoughts...

-Style Edit: would omit "that"

"You are such an ass sometimes…,"...

-Edit: take out the comma after the ellipses

Not to say that I'm some natural with a sword or something.

-Edit: stay in past tense, should be: "Not to stay I was some natural with..."

-Style Edit: would omit "that" too

Obviously the events at the S&B earlier...

-Edit: yeah...S&B or S&C or C&B?

"so I'll see you tomorrow, outside of the S&B."

-Edit: same as above

-Edit: "so" should be capitalized

"alright. Tomorrow, sundown. Don't you dare forget, Caleb."

-Edit: "alright" should be capitalized

Wait…I didn't have a damn thing to be ashamed of.

-Style Edit: "Wait...I didn't have a damn thing of which to be ashamed."

Amazing how one kiss(or several) can change your perspective on everything.

-Edit: needs to be an addition of a space between "kiss" and the parentheses

-Edit: stay in past tense, should be: "Amazing how one kiss (or several) [could] change your perspective on everything."

These days, it seemed as though anything that made me happy was a liability.

-Strong line, I like it a lot.

Overall I liked this chapter a lot too, you have a good talent with writing characters, and I really get enthralled in their activities. You've also got a great thing going here with the relationship between the two Mel and Caleb. I like them both tremendously, and Mel is just the type of lead woman character I'm hoping she'll develop into. I like how she's strong and has aspirations, and I'm desperately hoping that the two will be able to flee successfully, though I'm afraid that from the foreshadow there will be some sort of complication :S. Still, I enjoyed the details about the setting and how you described the city at the beginning, I like that Caleb recognizes he has a soft spot for his childhood home but realizes it's also perhaps too dangerous for him now, and needs to move on. I think that's mature, and it shows a strong character too. I look forward to how this relationship will develop, and how Caleb will too-you've definitley heightened my curiosity!
lookingwest chapter 3 . 6/22/2010
From RH/WRR

Okie dokie, so I didn't get any responses from you about the first two chapters I reviewed a few weeks ago, so maybe you don't frequent the RH as much as I thought...so I'll switch over to WRR now, XD.

"Where the hell have you been, Cable? You were supposed to be here THREE hours ago!"

-Style Edit: instead of capitalizing "THREE" I'd just lower cap it and then put it in italics.

"Well actually, boss, it's Caleb. And I'm sorr-."

-XD

The voice came from behind the doors that Ferris has just disappeared to...

-Style Edit: would omit "that"

-Edit: can one disappear "to" a door? I think it should maybe be "through", in which case, to not end with a preposition, I'd suggest: "The voice came from behind the doors through which Ferris has just disappeared."

"You don't always have to help me out, Melanie. Don't need you getting yelled at too." The Lady knows we both needed our jobs, what with how tight money was around here. The Mayor might be living the good life...but the rest of us are barely keeping our heads above water.

-I feel like this whole thing should have been in quotations, right? Caleb is talking to Melanie? So it shouldn't end on "yelled at too"...maybe not, it felt weird for him to be addressing the reader with "we" though.

...many men came to the tavern faithfully.

-Style Edit: "...many men faithfully came to the tavern."

"…Know what Mel? Yeah. I'll meet you in front of S&B tomorrow night. Alright?"

-Is S&B the bar? Because you called it S&C four paragraphs before this...and I think S&C is supposed to stand for Skull and Crossbones right? No idea what S&B stands for o.O

...I cant pretend that his little self-induced holiday wasn't working out in the town's favor.

-Edit: "cant" needs an apostrophe, so "can't"

It generated a lot of business, and it had even gotten me the chance to be with Melanie.

-Style Edit: would avoid using the dead verb "got" and replace it here with "given"

Instantly, I wish that I hadn't.

-Style Edit: would omit "that"

Adverting my eyes was one thing, however.

-Style Edit: when using "however" as "nevertheless" it's not grammatically correct to end or begin a sentence with it, but it's one of those things that is more style-involved with creative writing, but a must-rule with formal research papers, ect. So just for style purposes really, I'd suggest: "Adverting my eyes, however, was one thing."

-Then again, I'm not sure that the sentence needs the "however" anyway

There was a clatter as the aforementioned chair fell to the ground...

-Edit: "ground" should be "floor" because the setting is inside

There was nothing funny about what I was going to do to him, however.

-Style Edit: "There was nothing funny, however, about what I was going to do to him."

-Again, "however" could probably just be omitted too, your choice

"Y-You broke my goddamn nose!" I'm assuming he said.

-I've been a little conflicted about your use of past and present tense in this chapter, it feels a little wobbly to me-you're usually in past tense with this one, and here, I think there's a slip into something reminiscent of the present tense.

-Style Edit: "...I assumed he said." would work best as a past-tense speaker tag. Avoid using "I'm" when in past tense.

Only Ferris would have yelled out that very piratey(and stereotypical) battle cry...

-Edit: add a space between "piratey" and the parentheses

Like I said, this is how he always wanted the S&B to turn out.

-S&B? O.o Should be "S&C" I'm pretty sure now

Might as well give him what he's been looking for.

-Edit: to stay in past tense, "he's" needs to be "he'd"

"...but soon I was captivated by those emerald hues as our eyes locked.."

-Edit: your ellipses always have to be in sets of three, so there needs to be another period to complete the set after "locked"

Overall there were a lot of elements I liked about this chapter. I liked Melanie's character and the sudden love interest, or tinge of it-it's not full blown but it's just enough to compliment your characters and the setting of the Skull and Crossbones. I also though Ferris was a great bit of comedy relief that you sprinkled throughout the chapter too. I also liked that you're going to be writing about a festival of sorts coming up, so that it gives the reader more of a chance to get immersed in the culture of Alceria. Again, you do wonders with the "routine" scenes-I should really point people to this story when they have problems writing their own. And of course, the fight scene was well written and you balanced the action in the right place that picked up the pace of the overall chapter.
Dreamers-Requiem chapter 10 . 6/21/2010
Aw man, as always another great chapter. I just can't believe there's only 10 at the moment and I've finished it for now! What am I going to do without my daily dose of Ascension? Anyways, onto the review...

As always, you built up the tension really well and the interaction between Arthur and Rebecca was handled brillently, especially when she tells him "you're my stupid boy." Again, you really don't like your characters to be happy, do you? And the twist at the end made a massive grin come onto my face. Part of me is wondering how you're going to tie all this in together. Can't wait to see more!
Dreamers-Requiem chapter 9 . 6/17/2010
Arthur is, like all of your characters, very interesting. I like the start of this chapter, you introduced him without getting bogged down in loads of details, and manage to show his character really clearly, very quickly. The only thing is, and this might just be a personal thing, something about "!" as speech is a bit...odd, especially in prose. I don't think it's really needed there. The descriptions as always build up a really clear, good picture, and you leave it on a powerful cliffhanger. I can't help but wonder if his 'real' parents are tied into any of this? Anyways, great chapter, as always.
Dreamers-Requiem chapter 8 . 6/16/2010
Aw jeez, poor Caleb. You know, I really thought that was going to end with him and Melanie running away from the town. You don't like having even semi-happy characters, do you? As far as I can tell, that chapter was pretty much flawless; it was intriguing from the start, it was quite action packed and the part where his family are killed, well, it was shocking. You always deliever good death scenes. I'm only hoping he tries to save his brother and sister after all that. Nice work, as always.
Dreamers-Requiem chapter 7 . 6/13/2010
Wow. Just...wow. The way you wrote that whole chapter was amazing; the descriptions of the forest really drew me in, and made me feel like I was almost there following Calaeb to find his brother. And the way Caine kind of revealed his true colours was done really well. The way he looked at his brother though, and after everything he's done for Caine! The ending was beautifully written, with a great sense of foreboding.
Dreamers-Requiem chapter 6 . 6/9/2010
Aw man, why can't he just have a normal, happy night for once? As always, the characters are believeable, loveable and have an aura of mystery around them that I really need to unravel! So I'm looking forward to finding out what the family secret it. A few typos, but nothing major. Melanie is a really cool character; she's fiesty, interesting and yet clearly a romantic when it comes to Caleb, again she's believeable. And Caleb, as much as he goes on about hating his brother and sister...you can tell he loves them so much, and the sibling relationships you portray are amazingly well written. Nice work.
lookingwest chapter 2 . 6/2/2010
Ah, so I saw you participate at the RH, so I'll just go via there with my reviews!

From RH

You would think that my additional three years...

-Edit: would omit "that"

First part

-Well done, well done. I just finished reading a "morning routine" scene in another story, I crap you not, and this one was ten times more polished and twenty zillion times more interesting. I like that you show us the little things that make this morning routine *different*, thus keeping things really interesting the entire time.

Another thing that stood out to me right away was the narrative voice of your character Caleb. He's got a strong one and it shows. I liked the little dropped hints about the family's lifestyle. At first I was thinking, "Holy crap did he just kick that kid out of bed? Ah, I don't know if I can like this guy!" but surely as soon as Caine opened his mouth I could tell Caleb was in his right spot about the boy, XD. Not that I would say kicking him is the answer, but at the same time it was almost a relief. I like that he sees the absolute flaws in not only his snotty brother but *also* his charming little sister. One wouldn't usually pick flaws from a character like Cera, and it was really cool to see that you went ahead as the writer and did anyway. Caleb certainly isn't a stranger to complexes ;) Now I'm wondering how his dream will factor in-surely he knows the Icarus myth and everything. It's heavily symbolic too me, I'm just waiting for Caleb to get too close to someone and get a sick burn from it -_-

Second part

-Wonderful starting transition from your last sentence in the first part to the subject of the city in the second part.

Which meant that, at the end of the year...

-Edit: would omit the comma after "that"

"See you at home, Caleb! Stop it Caine, you're pulling too hard~!"

-Eh, not liking the squiggle thing here. And if that was supposed to be another exclamation point, don't add that either. I'd do an EM Dash, which you can get by simply typing two "-" smaller dashes together and pressing enter (at least that's how it works on MicroWord, though I don't know what you use), or just a simple dash would do too.

I really liked the paragraphs on your setting. Maybe it's just my reading mood this morning, but I find when an author starts going into deep descriptive paragraphs and it's badly written, that's when I tend to lose interest-and that didn't happen here. You kept it well written and consistent with Caleb's narrative voice the entire way through. I really felt interested in what he had to say, and I'm curious to know even more about his lifestyle! You've got a cool premise and I liked that you set up the countries and everything-I should start taking notes since the setting in one of my stories is super ambiguous, and the way you just elaborated on trade and the war with the other country was so smooth!

Very interested to see where you take this, and what the bigger plot could possibly turn out to be, because as of right now I have absolutely no clue, XD, but you did an excellent job introducing us to your cast and setting!
lookingwest chapter 1 . 6/2/2010
You and I have been reviewing one chapter of Liana's Shadows after another. I think it's about time I check out your work, XD.

...in to it's beckoning.

-Edit: I think it should be "its" without the apostrophe, otherwise it would read "...to give in to it is beckoning."

...and my feet would slowly rise up off of the ground...

-Edit: would omit "of"

This prologue is aptly named. I liked the thick description that you start with. Normally I think it's hard for that to work for a prologue situation, but I think because you describe everything in terms of the "I" when you start out, it keeps the prologue and narration interesting even if there isn't blatant dialogue or sudden action. Once I started picking up that it was an Icarus motif I thought it very clever. That didn't occur to me until about half way though, I'm so terrible with recognizing my mythology and I didn't see the title until after I was finished. I'll have to keep in mind to always check on that!

Anyway, I like your more literal approach to the Greek myth, it was cool to really get those vivid images and first hand descriptions from the character. I didn't think you faltered in your sentence structure in any way, and I normally pick at comma places but I found most of them wisely placed.

I liked the words that you used to describe the sun, to turn it into something sinister. You did a great job turning it as an object too. You use images like "into the waiting arms of the sky." and then you use words like, "the Sun bore down", and then by even capitalizing the "S" on sun it makes it even more impressive, almost like a second character in itself, so that was a wise decision.

I'm definitely interested to see where this takes your story.
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