Reviews for Gavin: A Summer Saturday: August 2028
Vivace.Assai chapter 1 . 3/10/2012
Interesting short story. I enjoyed how it was similar to a normal day. The events in the story remind me of the first few acts of Thorton Wilder's play "Our Town." There's some interesting events and a plot, but this story is more like a look into one day of someone's life. It isn't completely extraordinary, but there's some drama and something precious in everything that happens. There's the temporary excitement of newborn chicks or the anger at seeing something you don't like. But it's not exaggerated. It's really raw and real. And this works perfectly for the story, since you're just telling little stories that happens in one man's life.

I sincerely enjoyed this short story. Thanks for the great read!

Signing off...
Mockingbyrd's Tune chapter 1 . 10/15/2011
Beautifully written story. Hope you don't mind, but I'm going to analyzed it.

Intro: The children, helping their father, are being taught how to nurture life... the vegetables, the chicks.

Conflict: Paralleling the intro, these growing children have a need to be nurtured by both mother and father, and they cannot understand why this cannot be. In the midst of this lack of nurturing, an event occurs which shows how the father is suffering neglect, as well (when Gavin kisses Lauren).

Climax: The children withdraw their affection from their father because he has hurt them.

Resolution: He attempts to anesthetize their wounds by giving them the salve of their mother's voice, her comfort. Only, nothing she says changes anything. Abby and Ethan must learn to thrive without the fertile soil of a family intact.

This really tugs at my emotions. I feel desperately sorry for Abby and Ethan. Gavin comes off weak and powerless. He seems unhappily reconciled. Maybe I'm reading that into it, though. I liked Poppy's explanation about their separation because it's realistically what divorced parents tell their kids all the time. Why do adults choose to have their kids suffer instead? Whose decision was it to make that huge commitment in the first place? Why is it acceptable to push the consequences off on the tender hearts and minds of the kids?

Yeah, I love a story that elicits a strong reaction from me. Great work! - M.T.
Spookshow Whiplash chapter 1 . 3/29/2011
Wow, I can't believe it's taken me this long to finally read a story about the characters I've heard so much about, ahaha. First, let me start off as saying that you are way too hard on yourself about your writing. XD I enjoyed this. It was sweet, and a lot of the imagery (especially the garden in the opening) was appropriately vivid. I feel a bit bad for Gavin, though.

There were a few iffy instances where a quote was followed by an unrelated action with a comma between them ("...," action) where I think a period would have been better suited...but that may just be a matter of personal preference, so. (Now that I'm looking back for an example, of course, I can't find any...) Anyway. Overall it was nice. :)
Lucille Haunted chapter 1 . 2/28/2011
Hey, Lucy from Quizilla here. I wrote a ridiculously long review for this story (sorry about that).

I’m probably paying extra attention to it because we discussed it in the Your Writing Style thread, but you really did use A LOT of adjectives. xD

Overall, I like the story and your style of writing, there’s just a few things that detract ever so slightly from it that I can't help but mention. There’s a strange sentence at the beginning of the story, when Abby’s working in the vegetable patch:

“A knife she had stashed with her watering can was used to saw away at the stems of her bulbous acorn squash, [...]”

I don’t really understand why you used a passive construction here (though I suppose it’s to avoid starting too many sentences in a row with ‘she’?). It just seems a little odd and out of place. I mean, why leave out the agent when the whole paragraph is about Abby and what she is doing.

Also, I was a little confused about your use of tense at times. For example in the sentence, “When his children moved into the house, he constructed a small wooden step to help them reach the sink.” I thought for a second that Gaving was actually constructing the wooden step at that moment because you said “when his children moved into the house” instead of “when his children –had- moved into the house” and they did just go into the house.

I really liked the interaction between Gavin and his children, especially the part where he shows Abby how to slice the tomato. That bit was just really cute and it’s those little every day things that always make a story seem more real and believable to me. Some of the dialogue seemed a little awkward, though, perhaps even a little contrived. Too formal, too. Especially since you’re throwing in Irish every once in a while, it would be logical if the dialogue in general was more colloquial. It would make them switching between languages seem more natural.

The formality of their conversation strikes me especially when Ethan asks Gavin why he and his wife aren’t together anymore. "You should ask your mother. She would be the better one to discuss this with,” for instance. It just doesn’t seem very likely to me that someone would actually say the second sentence, let alone to his children. And, "Please to not press me to explain this today." I mean, really? Actually, that whole section bothered me a bit. I understand why kids would want to know those kind of things and ask questions about it, but I’m not sure they’d be so direct about it and, well, bring it up out of the blue like that.

Because I’m such a nitpicker, my reviews always seem way more negative than I mean them. I really like how you have all these short stories and seem to really know your characters and their history and it all seems part of a much, much larger picture. I don’t agree with what the other person who reviewed this story said about Abby; she doesn’t seem like a Mary Sue to me at all. She was just a cute little girl. I do wonder about Lauren a bit, though. I mean, what –is- her problem? :p Makes me want to read more to find out!

So, yeah, longest review in the history of FictionPress. xD

Lucy
Splash Where Tear Drops chapter 1 . 2/28/2011
Good story! I really like the conflict in this story.

It seems to me that Abby is a bit Mary sue. she's the typical "I'm cute and fluffy and irrisistable." Don't kill me, that's an opinion.

Happy writing!

Splash