Reviews for Nochnayia Lubov
Punslinger chapter 23 . 9/17/2010
Good chapter. But the title is misleading because the conversation between Nikolai and Chelyadin occurred in a railway station, not on a highway.
Narq chapter 23 . 9/17/2010
Aw~ I simply love the bit with Kolya and his mother. It's just SO sweet~

Kolya and his grandfather: the talk of the F1 generation is interesting. If Kolya is an F1 generation and "the Tsar doesn't know it yet" that he's the stronger one, are you hinting/foreshadowing the Kolya will win against the Tsar? Ooh~

Awesomness! (excuse my spelling!)
3H chapter 22 . 9/14/2010
Love it. We are seeing Nikolai's past unravel, good, but what's happening with Katya and him now back in the cabin? He met her years ago and she has lost her memory? I'll go back and re-read everything but I could use your clarification. And why was Katya in a labor camp? Did I miss that too? (Sometimes their names throw me off, not used to Slavic names.)
Michael Howard chapter 22 . 9/14/2010
"the red stain of communism"

Heh heh.

Nikolai has it bad for Katya, doesn't he? Well, strawberry lips can do that to a fella 8-)

Once again the subject of genetics, blood lines if you will, appears in this story. Very intriguing.

As always, looking forward to what comes next.
Punslinger chapter 22 . 9/13/2010
Good descriptive writing as clear and crisp as the winter scene. Nikolai's memories help to fill in his background. I like the subtle reference to Chelyadin's scientific interest in human breeding.

"...cleansing the countryside of the red stain of communism." You could drop "of communism," as the previous sentence mentioned communists.

"...fossicking for tidbits." I haven't often come across that colorful term since I devoured stories about Australian gold miners and other adventure yarns in my misspent youth.
Narq chapter 22 . 9/12/2010
Engrossing chapter. I envey you for being able to write seemingly not so important chapters but still fill them up with important bits. If that makes sense at all! XD

He had spent the day following her rejection with half of his mind trying too hard to forget her, and the other half planning how to see her again.

- no Kolya, that will not work.

At least, he took the bag Kolya was carrying for his grandfather:

- I think it should be Nikolai there, because everwhere else you refer to him as Nikolai.

The winter landscape stretching out around them couldn't be more white. Bled dry.

- love it how there's double meaning there.

"Sorry, sir," the groom called back, stroking the horse guiltily./Chelyadin slammed the window shut. "Where were we? Lunch, I think."

- I think Chelyadin is the one being guilty here!

Wonderful chapter!
Narq chapter 21 . 9/12/2010
I see you're doing a great job here.

Everyone's absolutely loving this novel!

Of course His Majesty had seen through the Red whore's little games. He had given not the slightest indication that he was impressed by her antics./But... but he had listened to her. Not given her a new mission, sure, but nevertheless... It stung.

- love this bit - love how it gives an insight into Mogilev - I reckon I sense a bit of jealousy there!

"Yes Sire," she replied so softly

- comma missing after Sire.

RentBoheme chapter 1 . 9/9/2010
I like this first chapter a lot! I think you do a good job of giving insights into the character's thinking. I also liked the conflict that she had with herself: feeling guilty for having all this food when Eleni had none.

However, I wish you had told us more about the officer. Unless I missed it (which I don't think I did), we didn't even learn his name. Maybe you talk more about him later on, but I think it would be better if you included something more about him in chapter one. Good job, nonetheless.
Michael Howard chapter 21 . 9/9/2010
Another polished, eminently readable installment to this tale. The alternate history setting for your story is presented in just the right degree of detail for maximum effect. I'm quite intrigued by the information you offer and yet it never overwhelms the human interactions that could - with superficial adjustments - occur in many different eras.

Nicely done!
Michael Howard chapter 20 . 9/9/2010
"Mogilev kept his gaze averted, so Alexei only ever saw one side of his face."

A very good line from a very good chapter. Your skill with pacing and narrative technique are certainly on display here.
Tawny Owl chapter 12 . 9/8/2010
I’m torn by the repetition of engrossed in these first lines. Part of me thinks it reinforces the concentration of the boy, and part of me thinks it would read better if you used something different. I like how you connect the chapters though. Introducing us to Dima and then flashing back to tells us more about him. It gives a logical (an comforting) structure.

The distant hum of the road beyond the compound walls grew loud. Like it was re-snaking itself right up the gate. – Maybe a comma instead of a period before like. It makes the second sentence sound in complete.

I like that he can’t see, but imagines pictures for us to see, and mixes fantasy in with them.

Then the gates whined open – nice. Makes it feel like a mission for these big heavy things to move.

Mouth sagging open in anticipation – lovely, and I love how the little boy is so excited by the promise of soldiers. And the child’s logic of already being in the courtyard. You capture his youth really well.

pulled the coat from Dima's coat-tugging capability – not so keen on this as it’s almost repetition again. Out of range of Dima’s persistent fingers, maybe? It’s a nice image of the white-coat’s disinterest in him though.

And the invasion is quelled by a well timed kick to the shin! Loved that. And the idea of the line up and the way Dima reacts to it. It was an amazing bit of character and atmosphere description combined. I love description like that!

. Dima suspected it was a ritual, like a dog barking at a gate. – This as well. It tells us about Matron’s character, and Dima’s and the power balance with the guards. Blinding sentence, really.

They came to the gate, and they kept going – love this too. And pretty much all the stuff in between. From the hints of matron’s character to the subtle image of Dima through the prickles of the crew cut. Haven’t enjoyed reading anything so much for ages. The only thing I’d suggest is maybe think of a word other than tight to describe matron’s lips – or given that we are seeing them through Dima’s eyes – something that he can compare the tight appearance to without reusing the word.

a shiny black car with bulbous wheel covers – I know that sort of car. I’ve seen them all over world war 2 films. It feels like Dima should find something to occupy himself with after the man goes quite though. It seems a bit of a sudden finish to the chapter.
Adrenalin chapter 3 . 9/6/2010
I liked the opening of this chapter because a) it described the set of mind of people confronted to daily violence really well and it sounded like something that could apply to many situations (like child abuse or women being beaten by their husbands) and b) it had the feeling of a prologue without all the annoyingness that comes with a real prologue. It prepares the reader for the rest of the chapter without boring him with being too lenghtful.

The use of explosives and the way the women handled it felt both terrifying and fascinating. The way they're trying to save as much of the cord as they can and the fact that it implies the guards didn't even bother to give them enough was really horrible, but the description of the blast and its consequences was very vivid.

I was a bit offset with the abrupt change in location and situation. From the messiness of the explosion you suddenly go to the quietness of the officer's cabin, and just as suddenly all of Katya's companions are dead. I would think some of them would have survived it, even if badly wounded and with next to none hopes for survival.

As I've said before, I think things are too rushed in this story. The affection the officer demonstrates toward Katya and the endearing nicknames seem too much, and almost out of place, especially after such an event. I wonder how she can abide them, actually. His decision to run away also appears abrupt, as nothing have hinted for it before. Maybe he could have started packing some things, and Katya would have wondered at it? But Katya's reaction to the proposal was realist.

I'm not fond of the end of the chapter, either. First, there is too many events packed in three little days: the death of Katya's companions, the decision to escape, the escape. If there's a time span between the explosion and Katya's awakening I didn't realize it. I think it's strange that she doesn't need a few days to recover from the injuries she must have sustained from the blast, too. Even if nothing was broken, she must have been cut by the fall and the debris. She was hit in the back rather hard - it must be painful for her to move.

Still, interesting chapter and definitively an interesting twist. I look forward to reading the rest.
Punslinger chapter 21 . 9/2/2010
Good chapter. Thanks for telling me that the story's time frame is the 1930s. If you mentioned that before, I missed it. But I don't think Khrushchev would have been worthy of Stalin's attention then, although he became a general in WWII. (Maybe you could establish the period subtly by mentioning some historic event outside of Russia, e.g. the abdication of England's King Edward VI.)

I know Mogilev is diligent in his duties, but it's unlikely that he would personally insoect the palace guard posts every night. You could save some words by having the Officer of the Guard report to him that all was secure.

One typo: "Nora's fingers closed over it like she handling a familiar gun. chapter 21 . 9/2/2010
This is, by far, one of THE BEST stories i've ever read on fictionpress. this my sound a little dumb but i feel as though im reading an actual BOOK, not just another trivial romance story online.

PLEASE, write more as i need to know what happens next!

Tawny Owl chapter 11 . 8/29/2010
Sorry, it’s been a while. Real life, I’m afraid. I’ve missed Nikolai though and looking forward to making up for it.

a conveyor belt of servants led him deep into the private living areas. – lovely image

I like that we are getting hints about his Grandfather, and the relationship that Nikolai believes will protect him and Katya. I’m looking forward to meeting this man.

I’m not disappointed. I like the on the surface sternness coupled with the agile hands. He strikes me as a man who is capable of getting things done. And he seems like a good male role model for Nikolai. It kind of explains some of why he’s the way he is when we first meet him.

"Where is your mother?" Ha! You know two people are close when they can just bypass the pleasantries.

This was great because it reinforces the status difference, both because Alexi gets to wear a sword in the first place, and secondly because it shows us that Nikolai is still kneeling.

Even your Mogilev is losing his Crimean tan. That's a sure sign you should head south again, you know." – Have you misspelt majesty? This is great though because it immediately lets us know what the relationship is between the two men.

Chelyadin's silence was notable in its persistence. – Love this description. And also lets us know there is still some lines that aren’t crossed.

The Cossack Colt description is good too. I think it’s the closest I’ve come to really being told what Nikolai looks like.

I’m guessing the mystery boy is the one we met in the first paragraph, and I’m now wracking my brains for all I know about the Russina Royal Family. It’s limited to Rasputin and Princess Anastasia though so not much use.

"You're not well, Grandfather,"

"You should not be here. – Touche! I’m impressed Chelyadin could get so far though. I wasn’t sure how much of his protestations about his health were true, and how much he was avoiding fuss.

An intriguing incident, especially as it seems like Chelydian was almost embarrassed about Dmitri’s presence in the palace.
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