|Reviews for To Sleep Perchance to Dream|
| Dr. Self Destruct chapter 26 . 3/5/2013
Setting: I really like your use of setting in the beginning of this chapter. They way you go back and describe a few familiar things from the previous Part Two, like the barn and the thorn bushes, really helps show how not only the characters are evolving throughout this, but the scenery as well. The attention you pay to the barn and how it's now collapsed is particularly haunting, and I'm wondering if Brynhild did this on purpose in order to help her forget the horrible memories of that place. Or if maybe the lingering spirits of Aurelia and Oren had a hand to play in that.
Scene: The scene where Aurora is talking to the huntsman and she notices his children are incredibly thin is very chilling. This also makes me wonder if there's some type of curse placed on this land because of what happened to Aurelia, especially near the end with Aurora encounters the Prince and learns about the army approaching. I also like how this scene of Aurora interacting with the huntsman and his children because it shows a lot about the relationship between them, like how she reads stories to his children.
Characters: The Prince really intrigues me. I'll admit, the way he acted when he first saw Aurora was a bit creepy, and I don't blame her for not trusting him and backing away when she did. I'll be interested to see more of him and learn if he really does end up being some type of Prince that saves the princess who's been sleeping for a hundred years. Also, I think the use of his character does a good job pushing the plot forward.
Plot: And speaking of plot, now I have a lot of questions, haha. But that's not a bad thing, it's definitely a good thing, because they're questions that I want to keep reading to hopefully see answered. Like why would the Prince take so much effort into finding this witch and slaying her? Is it really just for the promise of marrying the princess, or is this "curse" affecting his lands as well? And who exactly is the princess? Aurora isn't asleep nor has she slept for a hundred years (yet, anyway), so could it still be her? And is Brynhild the witch? Sorry, I don't expect you to answer these, I'm just rambling and letting you know what's going through my mind once getting to the end of this, just to make sure they're questions you want the reader to be asking at this point. Either way, I can't wait to see some answers.
| professional griefer chapter 11 . 3/4/2013
I really loved how you showed Brynhild's love for Frederick. I mean, you've obviously mentioned it before, but in this chapter you really let Brynhild's actions speak for themselves. I could feel how much she wanted him to live and how much she wanted him.
I also loved how you showed her desire for him when she pretended to be Aurorette. It was kind of sick and twisted, and that was pretty perfect.
Actually this whole chapter had a really creepy undertone, I really appreciated it. I thought you definitely showed how Brynhild was losing it, that she did what she did with Frederick. It was borderline necrophilia, but you made it work really well.
I loved this chapter, I couldn't find anything really wrong with it.
| Dr. Self Destruct chapter 25 . 3/4/2013
Opening: I think this opening scene of Aurora using the spinning wheel is a nice, calm opening to the next part of the story. While normally something like this would probably bore me, considering I don't really care much about spinning wool, for some reason I found the descriptions of her using the wheel very enjoyable and interesting. I think it's because you don't spend too much time or linger on it too long to slow down the pace, and you create a very vivid image with how she runs her hands through the wool and sews it together. So great job on that, I really like this opening.
Characters: It's always interesting to see how Brynhild has changed from each time jump to the next. Seeing her so frail on the floor is strange, considering what I know she's capable of. I like that inclusion of how she calls out for Frederick while she's dreaming, because it shows that she hasn't yet forgotten about that part of her past. I'm looking forward to seeing some more action out of her in coming chapters just so I can compare and contrast how her life with Aurora might have changed her.
Relationships: Even though Brynhild is asleep for this entire prologue, I like how you're able to develop the relationship between Aurora and Brynhild through Aurora's perspective. Aurora's worry for her "mother" shows that Brynhild must be somewhat decent to her, or I imagine Aurora wouldn't be so concerned with getting her mother to eat something. It's a well used character foil that definitely serves it's purpose; I find myself almost feeling sorry for Brynhild, as ridiculous as that might seem. Maybe I'm just worried about Brynhild for Aurora's sake.
Ending: I like the mention of the huntsman at the end of the chapter because it references directly to what I remember of Sleeping Beauty. I don't really know all that much about the older tellings of Sleeping Beauty (you know, before the Disney stuff, haha), and I've been wondering when we were going to get to those parts that I'm familiar with. I'm really interested to see what type of role the huntsman is going to play; it's been so long since I've seen anything Sleeping Beauty related, so this is all still kinda new to me story-wise.
| alyxbee chapter 1 . 3/4/2013
I like the descriptions, and especially the piece about the herbs and vegetables that she is collecting and where they are all going, and why little things are being done in preparation. It lets me sort of sink into the story and really get a feel for whats going on.
This did leave me with questions, but in the good way. I want to know more about the little princess, where the king was, and that sort of thing. I wish I had a little more glimpse into the party and the soldiers, but otherwise this is really good. :)
| Anihyr Moonstar chapter 30 . 3/3/2013
I really like the progression of the relationship between Aurora and the prince that you handle in the first half of this chapter. They're both so shy and subtly awkward, but obviously intensely interested in each other, and I admire the fact that you manage to make them maintain so much chemistry without forcing it or without even giving us all that many details. I can just feel it between them as I read.
It makes me, again, really hope for the best between them even though this story has been trying to teach me from the get go (I swear) not to get invested in true love because it's going to be ripped apart by horrible evil. (Or simply poor circumstances, as with Bryn and Fredrick.)
I especially liked both the scene where Aurora spoke with Dirk - her observations about him beforehand and then his consoling words when the topic of their conversation turned to her and the prince - and then the scene about the Edelweiss. I thought the flower scene in particular was lovely - brief, and yet intimate in a subtle way that felt very appropriate for Aurora and Kaspar's stage of romantic development.
I also really thought you handled the transition from Bryn's sick-hazy imaginings into a full on flashback was very smooth. I was impressed there. And I like how you're still managing to make her sympathetic, at least in her more innocent stages, even if I still hate her for all I know she'll grow to do. She's a wonderfully complex 'villain' because her emotions are so very real and palpatable. The reader *wants* to sympathize with her for all she's been through.
So, I think you do a great job on that front. I'll quit rambling for now. :]
| handna95 chapter 5 . 3/3/2013
Wow, just wow. This is certainly an interesting story. Granted I haven't read the entire story, but I'm willing to bet that it will only get better.
The characters: Brynhild is just an amazing character because she has good intentions at heart, but also contains such a darkness in her. She has faults, wants, and needs. She also isn't the nefarious villain that strokes a cat and has a complex plan. You crafted a very "human" character that people can relate with.
Frederick seems to be the type of guy that has an interesting and colorful past that he is trying to atone for. That was just my take on it, but I think that he is a character that has many layers. It is not apparent right away what his moral code is like or what his thoughts are.
Aurorette is probably my favorite so far. She seems like the nice mom/ ruler that cares about everyone. While her character is not transparent, she is also not a great mystery to be unraveled. I like that you added a benevolent character because it really enriches the story and makes the myriad of personalities more realistic.
Spelling/Grammar: There were some parts of your grammar that could be cleaned up a little bit, but overall you did a fairly good job. I did notice in something in Chapter 4 maybe. I'm sorry I didn't catch the exact chapter, but I did find a flub.
"Brynhild, will you please follow me back to the castle, I want to change before the evening meal?"
Put the question mark after castle and create a new sentence with "I want to change"
Plot: The plot of the ex-girlfriend trying to rekindle her old flame is one that has been revamped many times, but I personally don't remember that plot ever being thrown into an older time period. In my mind, medieval couples were very faithful and in love. They did not have to worry about those types of problems because of arranged marriages or because love conquered all. Your use of this plot in the setting you've chosen, creates a new fresh twist. Will the ex ruin everyone's lives or will she redeem herself? I don't know what will happen because the setting creates a whole new set of rules to be followed.
Scene: The physical scenes were something that you carried out very well. It was all very classy and nothing was too explicit. I liked how you did that because often times, sex scenes close your story off to a whole age group of readers.
I hope all goes well with this story. Happy writing!
| Daisy215 chapter 1 . 3/2/2013
I liked this because of the comparisons you used. Specifically the ones like comparing the eyelids to moth lids. It's always refreshing to see comparisons that aren't cliches or ones that have been used before.
I also liked most of the description. It made the story seem enchanting, the part about the snake-like ranks or the kitchen boys cooking the meat.
I didn't like that Brynhild wasn't really introduced. I felt the paragraph describing what she was doing was a bit too much detail, I would have liked to get a sense of her character more.
Hopefully I'll get the opportunity to review your story more! (Maybe catch a read now and then for fun between home work)
| RemnantsOfSyreal chapter 4 . 3/1/2013
Writing - "Aurorette put the glass to her lips, but she stopped herself from drinking when she heard the sound of yelling from outside in the corridor." Classic plot device, I freaking love it. Callbacks can be overdone in a lot of cases, but that one is a good one. The image it gives is crystal clear.
Dialogue - the Queen's lines read a bit like a stuffy old aristocratic inflection, but I think in this case it serves your story quite well. It does a good job of delineating between the voices of both ladies, in a manner that's easy to pick up on. Bravissimo.
Opening - Ahhhhh, now that I love. Fantastic job of painting Brynhild as a villian, and subtly done. It also provides an immediate image of a scene such as that one from a film.
Characters - well played here, the two primary ones we've seen thus far all ready have some depth to them, that should make for some interesting material farther down the line. The scheming once-mistress taking her revenge on the, in her eyes, simpering slip of a girl that -her- man took up with. I buy it, I'll admit. It's a trope that is older than dirt, but as they say, Tropes Are Not Bad. I like it.
All in all I've enjoyed what I've read so far, and I'm looking forward to seeing some more of your stuff in the forums. Keep at it! :)
| RemnantsOfSyreal chapter 3 . 3/1/2013
Writing - this line right here. "Her customary pitcher of mead waiting to be poured into the goblet she would sip from as soon as the baby fell back asleep." It reads a bit funny in the context of the rest of the narrative around it. A single 'was' between mead and waiting would probably clean that up, or a 'lay', or even 'sat'. And this one - "Will you go down to meal this morning, majesty?" Brynhild asked her. Also reads a bit funny. Will you be going down to meal today would make a reasonable substitution if you're interested. Either way it's a judgment call.
Relationships - I like the conflict Brynhild feels towards the Queen, that smacks of reality. She's grown to like her despite herself, despite the fact that she can't really bear to look at the woman with anything other than contempt.
Spelling and grammar - one thing, overtime. Two words. Again, revisionary magic and that practically takes care of itself.
Pace - so far the pace is rather solid. The story is moving smoothly and flowing from one chapter to the next, which makes the reading smoother by association. And we all know smoothness doth a good read make ;)
Enjoyment - reasonably well. With the story moving nicely and a few characters getting a little bit of color right off the bat, it makes for an entertaining read through.
| RemnantsOfSyreal chapter 2 . 3/1/2013
Writing - the writing in this chapter seems a touch inconsistent and more than a bit melodramatic. I'm not quite sure what role Brynhild plays so far, as it looks like she is simply wandering around from place to place.
Characters - not terribly fond of Brynhild so far (because no means no, even when said to women). If I read your summary right, she appears to be a villain. If so, then this actually works pretty well as a bit of foreshadowing, so kudos there.
-oh, and the King? Slapping her just so? I realize she was doing something against his will, but that seemed a bit excessive. Granted, attempted rape is pretty vile, so I suppose I could forgive him that, were he someone in my life. Either way it does go towards adding a bit of complexity, something which is always good, so there's that.
Dialogue - I'll admit, I got a bit hung up on that. Some of it seems, if you'll pardon my opinion, stilted or overwrought. "Never again!" he warned, "if you persist in this, you will be sent away, never to return here!" Does not read too well, as least in my eyes. That is probably just a bit for any revisionary magic to deal with later on, though. So far the rest of the dialogue is quite easy to identify with, and I know how difficult that can be.
Ending - now you've got my attention. She looks like she is gearing up to do something rather rash, and that is the kind of thing that makes you want to keep reading. It was well written and managed to say a lot in a few words, at least in my head.
-a brief other note about the writing. "Brynhild watched the blackness of night spread across the sky, the moon was hidden, and no stars broke though." Spelling error on that last one, easy fix. The way the rest of it reads? Odd. Wouldn't "Brynhild watched the blackness of night spread across the sky - the moon was hidden, and no stars broke through."? You could even substitute a period between sky and the, if you wanted to, either would certainly work.
| RemnantsOfSyreal chapter 1 . 3/1/2013
Hi hi! Back from the RG forums once again, and I've thoughts to dish :)
Opening - well written, but not terribly catching, either. I think the imagery of the flowers being crushed to release their scent is fantastic, though. Little details like that are ever so much fun, and they add color and vibrance to a world.
Scene - the bit with Brynhild making spiced wine, does that play into something farther along in the plot? If so, it's best left alone, but if not, I wonder if perhaps trimming it altogether might be healthier for the story. Again, I don't have the context, and I could be completely off base here, but that's what I'm getting from it.
Characters - I get that Brynhild is important, and I'm guessing her nature is revealed throughout the course of the rest of the work, but right now she doesn't seem very villainous to me. Again, that's probably because I'm in chapter one. If I notice I've erred in the following chapters I'll be sure to remedy that.
Ending - strong enough to get me to keep reading, so you're certainly in good shape there. It has the kind of feel that a cold open on television does, somewhere between a prologue and content.
All in all it appears to be interesting enough to warrant further reading, which I'll be doing right now
| Cinnamon Shards chapter 2 . 2/28/2013
I've liked Brynhild from the very beginning of this story, and I absolutely feel her pain. Dealing with bratty kids is always a pain, but when their parents are royalty I can imagine that there's a whole new level of stress involved. I don't blame her whatsoever for drugging the little beast.
I love that you managed to get across that our leading lady has feelings for the king very early on in the chapter without actually coming out and saying it. Very subtle. Very classy.
I think some of the young prince's dialogue might be too eloquent for a four year old.
"That evil Brynhild is a witch..."
Doesn't seem like an insult a small child would use, although;
"...she won't let me have supper."
Sits quite well with me, since little boys tend to exaggerate.
I feel like there should be at least a brief explanation somewhere as to why Bryn is waiting for the King. I understand that she's in love with him, but from what I gathered during their exchange, he's already made it clear that he doesn't want to continue seeing her. What makes her think she can change his mind? A little glimpse into her reasoning might help clarify things.
I'm rather interested in finding out just what she thinks needs to be done. You've kept things mysterious enough that I don't really know what to expect. Is she leaving? Is she going to kill herself? Is she going to kill somebody else? Consider this story followed. :)
| Dr. Self Destruct chapter 24 . 2/28/2013
Tone: I think you set up a really chilling tone in this chapter, what with the mentioning of all the blood and Aurelia being tied to the bed. The narration itself sounds very sorrowful, and I think you do a great job remaining consistent with the mood by your world choice. This is obviously supposed to be tragic, and it definitely comes across as such; I feel terrible for Aurelia.
Dialogue: This dialogue in this chapter is so creepy! The repetition of "sweet darling" does a great job characterizing Brynhild. Although she's absolutely crazy, I can tell from the way her voice sounds that she really doesn't want to do this to Aurelia, but she seems to think she has to. And I think you deliver that mournful tone really well without it seeming to be over the top.
Characters: But speaking of Brynhild's motivation, I'm still a little at a loss as to why she thought she had to kill Aurelia, considering how drastic that is. Was it just because of the baby? Because she slept with Oren? I guess that coupled with how she tried to abandon her mother would be enough to set someone as unstable as Brynhild off. It's hard to say; on the one hand I'd like more motivation behind Brynhild's decision, but on the other it makes sense that she'd do this without a whole lot of explanation because she's pretty loopy.
Ending: I really like the ending image. I think it's a great way to end this section of the story, mainly because Aurelia's death is pretty much signifies the end of this stage in Brynhild's life, so it gives a great sense of completion. You also close with that creepy dialogue from Brynhild, which sort of reminds the reader of how she acted and carried herself in the first section. She seemed to have gained some stability since the night Frederick died, but now it's all but crumbled away and she's back to being her old crazy self, haha.
| Unweighted Book Author chapter 2 . 2/28/2013
It looks like this retelling will mostly progress from the witch/villain's perspective? Pretty interesting choice, and it actually makes quite a lot of sense since it looks like you're going to be spending significant amounts of time on events that the original tale either skipped or never had, and Brynhild is the best perspective character for those parts.
The characterization is nice. Fairy tales don't care much for characterization, of course, and it's therefore something that you can't draw from the original tale. The new personalities that you have given the king and the villain are more satisfying, and it looks like you're going to rely on this dynamic of love and lust between the two to advance the plot. I think that's a good choice; it's certainly more human and believable than in the original tale.
I also wonder what kind of role Oren will play? He has no counterpart in the original tale. This is a petty dislike but he's obviously not a character that the readers are supposed to like. It may be a good idea to either reduce his appearances or make his role clearer some time down the line so that the readers know why they're reading about him. Otherwise, you run the risk of some readers skimming or skipping through scenes where he's involved.
| Cinnamon Shards chapter 1 . 2/28/2013
I really like your attention the detail -I found the bit about the flowers being crushed underfoot and scenting the air especially clever. Nothing is more off putting to me than a half dozen chunky paragraphs of exposition right at the beginning of a novel, so I'm very glad that you kept this prologue light and centred on the characters. Having someone interesting to follow right away made it much more engaging.
This portion is a little short, so I'm going to go ahead and read chapter one before I get too wordy, but be assured that I'm quite enjoying myself.