Reviews for First and Last
lookingwest chapter 1 . 7/19/2010
One hand moves as he wakes up.

-Style Edit: omit "up"

Besides that one optional style edit, this piece was extremely well written and well stylized. I apologize for not writing out my thoughts sooner. There's a lot that I loved about this-I think you said a lot without using so many words. The descriptions of the hands are of course the theme you're working with from the beginning, and I enjoyed the focus that you gave them-you described them really well, I could really visualize your descriptions. I think you especially captured the moment where the narrator's father is in the casket and she sees his hands and mentions that they are no longer his-I had a similar feeling of fixation when I had seen my great grandmother at her funeral-the hands, in that resting position, are vividly still in my memory, and you captured it with your language. So that part definitley stuck out to me.

I liked the part about writing too, and how you incorporated it into almost a type of metanarrative, I felt this was personal but then I just can't be sure-these moments of personal narration come through when the reader finds that the narrator writes during her father in the hospital, and it definitley succeeded in giving me chills. At the same time it's also juxtaposed with an extreme sadness, perhaps in the disbelief that the narrator has lost their dad.

And then there's the take on the prompt-I kept waiting for some sort of divine religious thing to happen, but it never did, and I LOVED that about this piece, it's so obvious that the prompt inspired you, but it's so different than the prompt because you didn't exactly take it in a literal direction. I enjoyed this immensely and again apologize for not writing out my thoughts sooner, or even properly being able to describe them to you over Skype, XD. There were a lot of rich moments with your language, the list of things that hands hold, ect. It really hit home in places yet was still distant. The sadness and trauma that you instill in the way the narrator describes the hands, ect. is chilling and sparks the words to life. Loved it ;)
Sercus Kaynine chapter 1 . 7/8/2010
'Last…I imagine they were cold, though I did not touch them to find out.'

Should be a space after the '...', I think.

'They're paler than normal and the skin is dry, but they look like they could open a pickle jar or punch numbers into a calculator.'

Love this line. :)

Such a heartstring-tugging take on the prompt, and you pulled it off so well, too! I love how you focused on the hands as a representation of the narrator's dad's life. While the rest of the story doesn't use much description, you describe the hands a lot and that really gave the story and emotion an anchor.

Good job and good luck in WCC!
Your-Magpie chapter 1 . 7/7/2010
the idea of starting the story off with the materials gave me the texture of the story/fabrics (if that makes sense!) almost like a fuzzy lense being unblurred or something...

it was interesting how you started the next part with 'first', which immediately made me think OH so there's a change later on.

but they still look like they could open a pickle jar or punch numbers into a calculator.

brilliant characterisation there.

the last three sentences were perfect and really sweet.

well, bittersweet. well not even sweet, just bitter and sad, but made me smile because it was well written.

lianoid chapter 1 . 7/7/2010
Very interesting piece you have here. It was written rather beautifully, I must say. I like your use of alliteration/assonance, as well as the part about looking at the dad was like watching a movie. That really said a great deal about his character, and the combined with the “ in motion. He had a soundtrack and voicetrack...” I thought it fleshed out his otherwise grey (no pun intended) character. You really did quite an excellent job with this piece. It’s rather depressing, actually, but the way you describe everything is quite beautiful. Excellent job, once again, and good luck in the WCC!
Lea Ai chapter 1 . 7/6/2010
This was a beautiful piece. I'm not sure the "first memory" part was quite right though since that wouldn't have been the MC's first memory of him, so that kind of confused me for a bit. But other than that, this was a very touching piece. Easy to identify with for anyone who has lost someone close to them. "Sorry, don't know him. My dad? No, dad doesn't know stillness."-after reading the line about the hands holding hammers and hymnals, etc., this sentence was perfectly placed to make me tear up. Great job bringing me into the story. Good luck with WCC! :-D
LookingForAngels chapter 1 . 7/6/2010
This was an amazing story. It conveyed so much in so short a story. Something in me moved when I read it...I saw the man in the hospital, being transformed from father to a wax doll. I felt as if it were my own father. This truly is a great piece. Keep writing!