Reviews for Through the Glass
Deserthawk chapter 14 . 7/26/2013
Liked that flash-forward. It was such a surprise seeing the two siblings hanging out like that, after all this time they've spent struggling to get close to each other - or rather barely missing each other. Makes the ending of this chapter that much more regretful. I also like that sense of balance, that Emilio is going to end up saving Gel from her demons as well.

Hm, I do like the feel of getting introduced to so many people - and seeing how they're all connected, it's cool. But I do find myself forgetting a name now and then (as I do in real life...). Have you considered writing up something like a family tree? Might help slower people like me.

Also, I thought the family drama was well done. Like it actually made me feel pretty uncomfortable at points. Hope it's not based on real experience!

I did notice less supernatural elements in this chapter - but I think it could go both ways. Like it would work to add more - but it's also interesting to have sections more connected with the 'real world'. It definitely makes Joe's ghost that much creepier.
Deserthawk chapter 13 . 3/15/2013
This chapter hit me hard. It's just - it got to the point where I couldn't tear myself away, couldn't stop reading. I always wondered what went down with Tara, ever since Gel mentioned it in one of the first chapters. But even though I knew she was going to die like that - it's amazing how much you can get attached to a character in one little section. She was a sweet girl, despite what she got involved in. And I feel like she could have changed lives if she lived. It's fucked up, it's fucked up. Gel's right to get out of it. Nobody's worth a hell like that - and if he really loved her, he'd realize it wasn't worth it either.
It makes me realize how sheltered I've been in my own life as well. I've never seen anybody die. Certainly not like that. And in the schools I've been through, only shadows of those things. But it's eerie. It's like - as kids we all enjoyed the same things, you know? It's one thing to hear about gangs on the news or whatever, and very different when someone can write about it like this. It's like - you learn what was going on for the first time. Thank you.
Deserthawk chapter 12 . 2/14/2013
You got a real way with description - or that's not even quite it - ambiance. Just reading that little bit when they were driving in Canada brought to mind a lot of things... like taking the train to Montreal.
That party scene. That was some crazy (in a good way!) juxtaposition with the party/church. You know, I feel like 'sin' has come into play a lot in this story so far. Like Gel losing her virginity 'irresponsibly' and hearing about her grandpa's death in the same night. And way at the beginning we had Emilio taking the car for a joy ride, and killing his friend... At the same time, I feel like it's bullshit to connect things like that. Coincidences happen, ya know? I mean I'm not advocating getting all hedonistic and having sex with everyone and getting high all the time and stealing whatever - but we should not do those things for our own reasons, maybe, or because we're decent people - not because we believe there's some kind of insane punishment hanging over our heads or we're going to burn in hell or something. Wow, that was a tangent.
A lot of little things made me chuckle too. Like this quote, "and my tribe didn't even live in tepees, asshole" and "even in French Indian gossip travels faster than the speed of light"
I do wonder about the 'little man' here. It seems he was purely antagonistic to Emilio so far - but since he was trying to help Gel's grandfather - I wonder if there might be something more going on. Maybe he's trying to help Emilio in some way as well?
That was a great mother/daughter moment at the end there. Yes, that brat did deserve it.
I do ramble. Joan d'arc is a great patron saint for Gel though. In more ways than one.
monarchos chapter 2 . 11/25/2012
Just to give you a heads up – I tend to write some very detailed reviews. I hope that the detail is beneficial. Please don’t consider suggestions as negative. I am trying to suggestions which could be beneficial.

1)The introduction – whenever we write, we have a background in our heads. As difficult as it is, don’t try to put on paper. Start in media res (in the middle of action.) If you need to, you can add the original background then later on. This will draw the reader in immediately.

For instance, a better first sentence: “Emilio swerved his mother's speeding 1984 Firebird away from the barrier dividing the overpass from the city streets below, but his panicked moves only accomplished in sending the vehicle into the path of the Saturn coupe in the other lane.”

I’m assuming all of the storm info is metaphor and foreshadowing. You can skip that here – instead describe what his car does & the emotions that go through his mind until it comes to a stop. When he rests his forehead on the steering wheel can be a good time to transition to the morning.

2)The exposition paragraphs are usually too long – split them into multiple paragraphs. In the same paragraphs, you have a few run-on sentences. Ex. “They'd become friends taking Lit together; being one of his favorite subjects, he helped the new kid keep up and even earn a B-“ Should be “They'd become friends taking Lit together, one of Emy’s favorite subjects. He helped the new kid keep up and even earn a B-.” If you want, some of this exposition could be delayed until another chapter (or skipped altogether.)
3) “Jessica was Julio's cousin. He'd been shipped out to stay with his Army uncle, who would hopefully straighten him out. Sadly after some local 'thugz' thought their suburban wigger-selves could make a name for themselves jumping the real deal, Julio and Jessica's brother were expelled from North High. Emilio himself almost shared their fate when he tried to intervene, which only accomplished in him getting clinched in a painful headlock by Mr. Klasinski - the college-ball playing history teacher and football coach. His suspension did nothing to elevate Jason's opinion, along with sinking the carefully cultivated clout he had with Jessica's parents.”
- who was shipped off to the Army uncle?(Jessica, Julio or her brother?) It might be better to write: “Julio, Jessica’s cousin, hand been shipped …”; “Julio and Jessica's brother were expelled”. This sentence is awkward. It sounds like Julio & Jessica are siblings and their brother was expelled. Give Jessica’s brother a name.

4) Also, the flashback part of the story tends to wander between topics. Try not to jump topics so quickly. My suggestion would be during one part of the spinning car, start with breakfast, then return to the car at rest. But for now, focus mostly on the action and not the thoughts.

Hope this helps. These are just some ideas. You may decide that they are worthless. Play with different ways of writing to see what works best.
YFIQ chapter 2 . 10/25/2012
Overly dramatic indeed, lol.

Good read.
Deserthawk chapter 11 . 10/8/2012
Oh god. She's not really pregnant is she? That dream is starting to make much more sense to me... But I like Chewy and Gel together. Especially the way they were as little kids. Shame that things like that never work out. I thought their conversation about cultures was cute but sad. That they have to feel that 'difference' from other people that early.
I'm really liking the description (as usual). The way you describe her neighborhood, it kind of reminds me of Detroit. I also liked the difference between the twin cities, and the pow-wow. I've heard of those, but always in some kind of 'tourist attraction' context. It's cool that people still do those they way they were meant to be. Fun to meet more of Gel's family. Although I do feel she should listen to her Mom at this point. Those gangs are giving me a real bad vibe. Maybe I'm naive but I think it's a shame people ever have to get involved in those things.
Deserthawk chapter 10 . 9/15/2012
Haha, Gel is awesome. That war cry. I liked reading about all those legends in the artwork, they were cool. I think some of those dreams are starting to make more sense...
Her family past is epic as well. Especially with Rosia and Christopher... I'm sort of reading into it as some sort of foreshadowing. I hope not though.
She seems more comfortable with all her heritage than Emilio. Probably because she has more exposure to all sides. Also her father figure is not... Jason. I don't know, it seems much better to me to not have him there than to have someone like that instead. Like her dad doesn't seem like a bad guy he's just pulled in too many directions. Well due to his own irresponsibility as well. Well what do I know.
I kind of want to visit St. Paul now.
Deserthawk chapter 9 . 9/10/2012
Well, I think 'race' is a stupid idea in general. But anyway.
That devil is an interesting guy. I'm starting to see it as a part of Em, subconscious kind of. How it keeps triggering these events that push him away from his friends, from Jessica. Hope he manages to kill the little bugger somehow.
I want to believe Jason isn't as much of a jerk deep down inside, that's he's gonna come through in some way. But this chapter is not helping the matter. Although I guess Jason could be getting on Emilio's friends because he is genuinely worried about him getting involved with the wrong people... but it's a stretch.
I guess the reaction is typical, but I think all the 'parental units' are overdoing it. Especially concerning Emilio. It's kind of sad how the overpunishment will push him to the accident, to actually harming someone...
Nice to get the context. I judged Emilio a lot from his actions in the first chapters, but now I see a lot of it was unjustified, or that at least I can understand him better. It's a good effect.
Deserthawk chapter 8 . 9/2/2012
Haha, that English class scene gave me flashbacks. Especially with that 'theater nerd' chick.
Glad that fight didn't escalate... I was waiting for the worst there. It's getting real tense. I feel like this is leading up to something terrible, someone getting killed even.
It's too bad Marcus is still pissed about who knows what, but I'm glad Emilio's getting some new friends. That scene where they were throwing all that Spanish at him made me laugh although it was bit sad. Especially that "are you that adopted kid?" Julio seems like a nice guy (in general) and I wonder how he got involved in those gangs... sucks how they're still into drugs though. J-Killa was also pretty hilarious, but I think they're underestimating him a bit.
Also nice one with Jessica, lol.
Deserthawk chapter 7 . 8/29/2012
Wow, Emilio has some... interesting friends. I kind of like JB's personality though. Like a nice person, just his issues get him down. I liked that scene at the end. How he and Tony can be brothers despite all the crap going on.
The part about the potheads and the grocery store was funny. But also sad to me. It's good Emilio knows to stay away from that stuff. Poetry's a much better 'drug' IMO. Interesting poem too, I'll have to look up Ginsberg although his name does sound familiar.
Man that dream was effed up. I don't even know where to begin. Somehow I feel like that girl's Gel. But he had this dream in the past so it doesn't quite make sense... unless it's reflecting her past too? Like why she feels so guilty. It's almost like she had to sacrifice that little kid to escape... I knew she had something up, but no idea it could be that dark. Really interesting where this is going.
Deserthawk chapter 6 . 8/25/2012
I think you captured the essence of high school right there. The effed up parts. Those cliques are almost like gangs... you portray well all that rage, how it's just waiting to break out. I sense this situation's just going to escalate from here. Still holding out for an reconciliation though. If anyone can do it, it's Emilio.
Stretch and Laurence seem like cool people. I hope Em gets to be friends with them. I don't know what's up with Marcus. To me he represents that sort of person who's not willing to move forward, just wants to keep fighting. But maybe there's something else going on with him that I don't know.
Liked that scene in the beginning. How the spirits were welcoming Em, not threatening at all. I wonder why she was crying, and what they were saying (we're there for you?) The little guy is interesting is well. He seems to represent the inflammatory agent, the thing that prevents people from getting along. Little things push people over the edge.
Whoops, sorry for rambling there...
Deserthawk chapter 5 . 8/24/2012
Cool to know more about Emilio. Heh, I'm guessing he kind of likes Heather, that was why that Conan book was his favorite. Those kids really suck, making fun of her like that.
Nice description of Pike. Is it a real place? I could pretty much see it right there in my head. Especially that restaurant.
Emilio's Aunt made me laugh. How "he was on the verge of pledging his soul to the Devil" to avoid another lecture. Just that quote pictured her nicely. I dislike his grandfather though. How he harps on how they came over to get away from persecution, but won't allow his family religious freedom. And gets on other people coming over and 'taking away jobs'. I don't think he really gets it.
You have a way with describing people. Bringing them to life. Your characters just seem real.
I'm also enjoying the little supernatural elements. The little person (BTW, what nationality is Djabelek from?) and the 'talking' ancestors. I wonder what they were saying... 'you don't belong here?' I like how it's just slipped in there, very plausible.
I feel like he's dealing with it remarkably well so far, but maybe he's just holding it in or not admitting it to himself. For instance those 'voices' could be in his own head... Definitely looking forward to seeing where this is going.
Deserthawk chapter 4 . 8/16/2012
That was an interesting insight, into the Hu Plig ritual. I like all your details, it's very cool to read about and picture. Seems like it worked too. That girl he saw at the end was Gel, right? I wonder if her 'hands slick with the blood of her enemies, while her eyes were nothing more then gnawing pits of guilt' is a reference to something that already happened or foreshadowing. Hm, I wonder if Jason was also conscious of being in the dream. Either way, it clearly shows what kind of person he is.
I'm guessing that Red and Blue man might represent different European countries? Maybe England and Spain? Not sure who the pale one is though, or the ghouls... lots of fun trying to figure out your symbolism here.
Haha, that coffee house scene at the beginning was so real. I know exactly the kind of place you're talking about there.
I'm glad Emilio's awake now. Hope he finds a way out of all that trouble, with the trial and his friend's death and everything... I bet Gel will help him through.
FixedUrFic chapter 2 . 8/14/2012
I normally go to town with the nitpicks in my reviews, but this is excellent. Keep it up. :)
Rumors of War chapter 9 . 8/14/2012
This is a review of the whole story; AlthouthI'll admit right off the bat I can't identify with the cultures you write about, I'm intrigued by the detail you fill each chapter with. my stories,Amorous Adventures of Krin Hoekeson part 1 and 2 deal with the attempts of Krin's friend Pam to deal with Terry's sister, who was for all intends and purposes another Gel, I wish I had read your story beforehand I could have gotten Terry's sister a better description of her clothing and behavior,I was going for a character exactly like Gel but missed the mark. Anyway I love your descriptions and insights to sub-cultures within our own, keep up the good work.
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