|Reviews for The Sleeping Villain|
| pumadelic chapter 24 . 3/18/2017
Jillet's cold ruthlessness is emphasised again. This chapter is about the sins of the parents visited on the children. Ria is now much more sympathetic - forced into spying and living under duress for her entire life, selling her sexuality as that was the only way to survive the royal environment.
Yay! You have a gay character! Jago is queer as a... general. I knew it. I'm delighted but I suppose his threat shows that your kingdom here is as homophobic as ours, at least in the army. Or is he asexual? Whatever, he is one of my favourite characters and now has an extra layer.
The conversation between Ria and Jeanne is well calibrated.
The closing paragraphs, on the terrible legacy of hatred and violence, are believable because they have been earned. You have demonstrated that Nic was damaged by his father and now Jeanne realises how much they are in the same boat. In such a context, forgiveness is the way forward. She can admit her love for him and see it as a mature development.
Thus you have avoided the 'Stockholm Syndrome' issue - or at least sidelined it. Jeanne will be in the familiar female role of a redeemer but she is also redeeming herself, discovering her true autonomy. Good stuff.
I like Nic and Jeanne. If you don't make Belle an unconventional bridesmaid at the eventual wedding, I will be most put out.
The writing flows, some good unflashy images. A few errors - 'litus looked as discontent' -no 'ed'.
Looking forward to the next update!
| Kat-Mueller chapter 1 . 3/2/2017
What a snazzy villain you have!
| alltheeagles chapter 24 . 3/2/2017
It's gonna be a bunch of disconnected remarks again, I'm afraid... so here goes.
There were some lovely bits on the characters' posture and appearance eg Jilette's grip, Ria bending under the words - I really enjoyed them.
Well ok, so now I'm somewhat clearer on Ria's motives and why Jilette trusts her. "A woman scorned" is a formidable motivation, and you've also made it quite clear that she's actually fallen for Nico against her original intention. I hope he's spending his self-imposed solitary confinement figuring out which girl he really wants, and not, oh, IDK, in a prolonged sleeping fit? Maybe somebody should go and check on him...
SO many secrets! Ria has them, Jean has them... which all points towards some kind of big confrontation or expose later. It builds up the excitement, like watching an approaching storm front.
| alltheeagles chapter 23 . 7/28/2016
Hmm, it seems that Ria's motivation is NOT incidental after all, now that she's turned out to be a spy. It doesn't surprise me that she managed to slip out of the fortress to talk to Jilett, but it does surprise me that he trusts her just like that, or that he even agreed to meet her - wasn't he worried she might be an assassin, and why didn't he question her reasons for coming to see him? It was just a bit too convenient for me...
Anyway, I'm completely on Nico's side this chapter. Poor, poor, guy... having the rug pulled out from under his feet. I hope it doesn't set off another narcoleptic attack (incidentally he hasn't had one of those for a VERY long time, has he?) I hope it makes him reflect on the question of whether he loves Jeanne, and how this affects his actions henceforth.
| alltheeagles chapter 22 . 7/26/2016
*Doing a little happy dance*
Finally! I'm happy that even the thought of loving Jeanne has entered Nico's head at last. Why was it ever such a difficult concept to grasp anyway? That's the effect of living in isolation and being socially retarded for you. Although I'm one to talk, making my own characters go through endless agonising over whether they love somebody or not. But at least they're open to the IDEA of being in love, unlike Nico here who's even now questioning the possibility of such a thing! I mean, Jeanne had long ago admitted to the possibility hadn't she, even if she misidentified it as lust...
Okay, rant over. Enemies literally at the gate. Big emotional epiphany. I smell resolution! Some loose ends for sure, like Ria's motivation in (okay I finally have to admit it, they're doing it) bedding her own cousin, knowing who they are to each other, and why Yulia and hubby are living nearby and the significance of the babies, but I consider those incidental.
| alltheeagles chapter 21 . 7/26/2016
I'm not on Inkitt but I wish you the best of luck! Jeanne is being very contrary in this chapter. My initial reaction to her coming back obediently with Roderick was surprise (What, she didn't even think about escaping or resisting when Roderick made her put on the armour, even put it on herself? - Isn't that out of character for her?) and then I was quite happy cause it meant she didn't really want to be saved, or (more importantly) didn't want to be parted from Nico, but I ended up a little disappointed because of the anti-climactic 'welcome' by Nico - Oh, you're back. Ho-hum. Argghh!
There's massive denial on both sides and I can't take that much longer. I suppose it's the style of this piece not to go into the characters' thought processes, but I'd just like a little more indication of why she came back at all, and how Nico felt about it.
| alltheeagles chapter 20 . 7/24/2016
Nico and Eli are much alike, now that I think about it. Not that they're exact copies of each other, but they show similar reluctance to face their emotions, though for different reasons of course. You have a knack for doing tortured guys, whether they're tormenting themselves like Nico or because they're 'broken' like Eli. And that hits my hurt-comfort spot exactly.
I have this feeling that threads are coming together with the constant stream of clues about the past and their parents, but I can't make out anything just yet. It's intriguing and maddening all at once, but I guess I'll just have to go with the flow and find things out according to the pace you've set...
| alltheeagles chapter 19 . 7/23/2016
Well I got my wish and Jeanne took action. Only to uncover yet another mystery. I know that the name Gladwell is significant, but can't remember in what way since I've been away for a while. So anyway, that little interlude with Litus was interesting, in that it shows us the little menage a trois in the snowbound castle isn't going to continue for long.
I liked the verbal matches in this chapter very much in terms of witticism, but in terms of relationship development they leave me feeling slightly confused. I'm not sure of the status of Jeanne and Nico right now. Are they still friends? Has the harrowing events of the journey worn off and they're back to being enemies? Frenemies? I have the type of personality that craves sureties, and this is hard for me to take...
| alltheeagles chapter 18 . 7/23/2016
Oh I've been away for ages, yet it feels so familiar. That shows how consistent you've managed to be with the tone and mood of this piece. It's much more - blatantly teasing, I would say. Like this question of whether or not Nico has slept with Ria. I can't tell, frankly, from all the innuendos. I don't want him to, but if he did I couldn't blame him the way Jeanne leaves him hanging. Hooray for Belle! My in-story ally for breaking up Nico and Ria!
While I'm decidedly not on Ria's side, I do sympathise somewhat with her. She's only doing what she has to do to survive. Jeanne, if she wants Nico, needs to be more decisive, because all that will happen how is a dead-end status quo if neither of them take a stand of some kind.
| pumadelic chapter 23 . 3/23/2016
It's a strong opening with Litus' army having to contemplate a siege or explosives and the sudden appearance of Ria. Hell hath no fury or no scheming like a woman scorned. Both Jillet and Ria are playing a manipulative game here although the former is more heartless. He is happy to sacrifice his daughter, the prospect is a casual afterthought for him. Ria seems impressed with his looks so I don't know if you're opening the door to a rather twisted romance there.
I really like the kitchen scenes. Thanne's swing from accusatory captor to gossiping friend to Jeanne underlines the ambiguity of her situation nicely. The little boy is a nice touch too. The interplay between Nic and Jeanne is sharper here and blackly comic. He acts like a small child throughout his interactions with Jeanne and Fia and appears vulnerable. Jago, of course, is partially on to Ria and watching his back
There's tension with both the love triangle and the possibility of the castle being blown to smithereens so a good hook for the next chapter.
| pumadelic chapter 22 . 3/23/2016
The description of the siege is oddly laconic; still you're more interesed in the character exchanges. Nic shows himself capable of deflecting arrows, wonders if he has a death wish and practically offers his throne to the staunchly loyal Jago. Meanwhile his heiress eats cookies and tries to ignore her amorous feelings. Gunnar acts as the reader's messenger.
The reveal about Nic's and Ria's parentage adds a nice twist (plus a light squeeze of incest) puts Jeanne in yet another awkward situation. Stockholm syndrome or not, it is a staple of captivity tales of this sort that the one who escapes from an unloving guardian may find greater appreciation elsewhere. Jago, ever cynical and protective, puts in baldly that Ria's barrenness means that the 'incessant coupling' won't produce a genetically dubious child.
The exchange between Nic and Jeanne does not transcend cliche (not your eyes say yes). Some of their banter is funny but I enjoyed more Ria finally confronting him with the truth after some roughish sex.
Nic does seem rather clueless in this chapter - he presumably hasn't had many opportunities to experience 'true love' so maybe it's understandable. My favourite line is one of the simplest - Jeanne's irritated imagining that Nic is feeding Ria sweets.
| pumadelic chapter 21 . 1/3/2016
You start with a classically romantic scene then have it chewed over in the Hinter-interlude with the charming Martin and Yulia. That baby still rocks and of course the old married couple are not fooled by Jeanne's claim that she is not fond of Nicolais.
I had forgotton who Roderick was which slightly lessened the impact of him capturing Jeanne in the snow. The biscuits are a nice touch and reappear again as Thanne makes coookies for his favourite. Dressing Jeanne up in armour is a clever hint towards her namesake . It does seem odd that she does not react a little more to the sight of her father; yes, they don't have a great relationship but I felt it was too blandly dealt with.
Does Jeanne want to offer herself to Nic? Her reaction to the presence of Ria hints as much as does the fact that she doesn't shake off Roderick and make for the King's camp.
Jillet's machination need to be dealt with: this on off romance needs resolution. I'm looking forward to seeing how you'll do it.
Less orgininality in the writing here but it does its job.
| pumadelic chapter 20 . 1/3/2016
Another strong scene between Litus, Tala and Jillet. It seems that Tala rules the roost for the moment. Jillet has been underhand indeed in trying to ruin the king - legislation no sane people would put up with? We know all about that in the UK. There's a thing called inertia.
More love triangle shenanigans. You open up a few more possibilities for Ria: is she trying to get vengeance for her family's suffering at Valerius' hands? A victim? A revenger turned lovelorn? I still didn't feel that interested in her unfortunately.
Here's Nic hoping he only feels lust for Jeanne. Once again, too much 'fainting' goat. Belle is a charming idea and her affiliation to Jeanne works as does the ongoing reminder of Nic's condition. The banter is nicely done. Perhaps Nic is becoming a little too sweet? How is he going to react when a real decision comes along? Jillet is very ruthless indeed.
I liked the carrot chopping ending. Not Freudian, but fun nevertheless.
| pumadelic chapter 19 . 1/3/2016
Tala and the King are well dramatised, with their romantic disappointment and jealousies. It is also a clever way of inserting the backstory of Nicolais' attractive gentle mother.
Jeanne's escape is both poignant and amusing. I found those brown eyed babes incredibly appealing as are the gruff and defensive Martin and Yulia. Who the baby daddy? I've forgotton the colour of Nicholais' eyes but it certainly seems that the progenitor is someone high status and possibly dangerous.
Dialogue and description in this chapter is deftly done - nothing too flashy, just in service of the story. Pacing is also good
It is sly and lovely that Nicolais finally kisses Jeanne after she has revealed her anxiety that he would assault her. He denies this and we believe it. He is not his father. You managed to make it come as a surprise - that finger along the lip was good - and Jeanne and Nicolais' bemused reactions are great value. I particularly enjoyed 'his reflection looked content'
The 'love each other but don't know it' trope can be irritating but you do it with style and some substance here. To say both Nic and Jeanne have good reason for 'relationship issues' is an understatement.
So there's Ria undulating all over Nic. Nothing interesting there. So here comes Belle, who shows how easily Nic can be manipulated by a female and another kiss. To have Jeanne admit that she trusts women no more than she trusts men is a great, and believable touch.
Still really enjoying this.
| TMSantos chapter 19 . 10/28/2015
this story breaks my heart