|Reviews for The Knight Who Aims for God|
| Victoria Best chapter 1 . 8/24/2016
I really, really enjoyed this. The story was magical, and every line shone. I am very impressed by the strength of the writing and the beauty of it - this is certainly the best writing I've seen from you. I loved almost every line, particularly the descriptions of the 'funeral fires' that only our protagonist can see, and the way you described the spirit reaping ritual. That was amazing!
The world building in this was excellent. The clay homes, the Wild West, the 'snow wastelands.' Having said that, it was a little jarring when the snow wastelands line came along, because until then I was under the impression the story was set in a desert landscape. I think it was the mention of the clay homes and the Wild West, and the line "when the sun left them to wander in the darkness until they burned" that made me think this, so I was surprised to see that line suddenly pop up. I think you need to introduce the cold much earlier and perhaps name the Wild West something different, and perhaps eliminate that line about the sun. I wasn't quite sure what you meant by that line anyway, so it definitely needs some tweaking or clarification.
I love the subtle hints you give about the people that live in this world, such as, "Though their people were not really as savage as they liked to pretend." That's a very interesting line, because throughout the story we see that this is a cold world where, as our protagonist explains, people cannot afford to live, let alone afford comforts. And yet lines like these show there is some hope, there is some humanity, and I get the feeling the protagonist isn't quite as cruel as he would like others to think as well. Definitely intrigue and mystery in this story, and it's a great way to draw in readers and build the character of the world itself, not just the protagonist.
I also enjoyed the way you slipped his thoughts into the narrative, like, "still too many, in his opinion" and the line about the mould.
My favourite lines have to be "all three soaked but only two trembled," which was totally chilling, and "noticed the spirits carved into his skins and hailed him as the saviour he wasn't." I also liked
"there are enough dead to go around" although I get the feeling I've seen the same line in many Tarantino-esque action films :p
Some baffling lines in this, like the line about the sun. What did you mean by "no god heard the prayers of the people...?" I would recommend that at the very least this line should be shortened - it was quite a mouthful and was a lot to take in. Also, another line I didn't quite get was "freed of their company." Whose company?
Perhaps there could be opportunity for more intricate descriptions also. I'm sure there are better words for cold air than frigid and better words for snow than chilling.
The main issue I had with this was that I wasn't quite sure the technology of the world, and its advancement. You mentioned three things that felt jarring - hours, metres and a snowbike. Without these three things, I would have assumed this was a medieval fantasy world, what with the small clay homes and the spirit reaping rituals that are almost Arthurian. What was your vision? I would recommend thinking of your own measurement of time and length (they are something from our world, perhaps not your fantasy world) and then having a think about the snowbike. There was no description of it, so if you are going to blur together medieval and modern, which you could totally do, there still needs to be description of what exactly this snowbike is and how it works. But if it is engine-run, then there is also the question of what else is modern in this world? And, perhaps, would people be living differently than this simple life presented here if this is a modern world? Make sure your ideas do not conflict.
Trod upon? Do you mean trodden on? Also an ending quotation missing on "take the other one."
Perhaps some variation in language. Bite/ biting was used three times to describe the cold, and burn was also in here the same amount, and there was a lot of saviour/saving going on as well.
Thanks for the read!