Reviews for The Things We Kept
Murphy Chapelwood chapter 1 . 12/24/2017
Opening: The in medias res opening is well done, the first paragraph ending with the foreshadowing of Berti's death made me smile upon a second reading. Their conversation is a nice kick-off for the story, but the one thing I might do was end the line "We live for what we brought with us from before" with a colon instead of a period (or you could go with an ellipsis, but I believe the colon would be better at saying "what comes next is the answer to this line"). You definitely don't need a whole section break, but it would clue the reader into the transition to the past a little bit quicker.

Characters: I did enjoy the character archetypes you chose, and then played with by the end, and the fact that instead of going the typical route of hardship turning the children strong, it instead warped their flaws into defining traits; at least, except for Terry who seems self-aware and is attempting at something better (though is reluctant to believe it possible). It made the story feel far more believable.

Writing: It rarely comes up, so when it does it's rather shocking, but it's TELLING. I'll specifically mention that paragraph about Jared where it just lays out the baseline for his character right in the narration: rules-abider, but really loyal. For a moment it took me out of the story, it felt rushed. Like, I would just accept a few lines from him trying to dissuade Terry, talking about how they'll get in trouble, then how it could be dangerous. It could also be used to highlight Terry's behavioral problems/problems with authority, which until the ending summation I had sort of handwaved off as just being a bratty child.

Enjoyment: The whole last third, with the world descending into chaos, was really great. Things getting worse and worse everywhere mirroring their own deterioration. Some sparks of hope (books, songs), being dashed (the father's attack, that Giulia is just singing nonsense and not caring). All culminating in a genuine adult moment from Terry of passing off the doll, which in a way saved them from the bombs but also forever split her from her family.
lirianstar chapter 1 . 10/13/2017
I really. really liked this. Especially the questions in the beginning about why* one wants to live, and the worth of existence. Nicely done, the mc is more mature and perceptive than she appears to be!
HNoel chapter 1 . 9/25/2017
I was pulled into the story immediately. Although the situation is foreign, the people are completely relatable. The author created atmosphere without burdening the story with too much detail, allowing the reader freedom to imagine the setting their own way.
Eyrine chapter 1 . 9/5/2017
Wow...your story is good. Short, but plenty of room to get to know the characters, their fears and their hearts. It really makes you think about the important things in life.
Katie Grey chapter 1 . 5/31/2017
This is so so good! It's beautiful, and tragic, and sad... but, somehow, you make it so that I also want to smile reading it. The line, "Guilia never stopped singing, not ever." Is heartbreaking. And when you describe disaster after disaster striking the city, its chilling. This is the best thing I've read in a long, long time. I'm not sure if you're planning on continuing this, and honestly it would do just fine as a one-shot, but if you are, I'll be the first to read it! Oh, and thanks for the reviews as well.
GreyManiac chapter 1 . 5/30/2017
I like it. Only 1 question though: how old is Terry? That's all. Great start
JayJarvis chapter 1 . 5/26/2017
This is a great story with a great ending and a fantastic message. It not only reflected but looked forward. If you ever return to this story, this would be a great prologue for a story about the little girl, I can just imagine her singing in the raining, collecting half-dead sunflowers at the side of a torn up rode. The only thing (at least that I could think of) that you could do to improve this story is by taking out the tornado to make it more realistic. Those happen mainly in places with an expanse of farmland in the middle of a continent, not by the ocean where a Tsunami would be. It didn't do much for the story either, the recovery progress would've been slow anyway.
Wonderful job and keep up the good work!
crazy lion chapter 1 . 5/25/2017
Hi, Aurora!
I'm... crying. Seriously. This story is so full of emotions! I don't know where to begin.
Well, I start my review by saying that you write very well. You are a telented weiter, I'm honest.
Terry is very friendly; and when I read she wanted her doll, I smiled. She was a child, so she didn't understand very well that the situation was desperate. I understand that her mother was worried for her and didn't want her to take her doll because she wanted to run away withher children, but... well, the protagonist talks about what's important, at the end of the story. I can say that, according to me, Zoe was important to her at that moment; and her family, of course. But her doll was, for her, like a sign of hope.
Where's Teresa and Tristen's father? You didn't talk about him, right? Is he dead before the apocalypse?
The description of all people running for their lives is terrible. Thinking that this could happen, in the future, here ad remembering some films which talked aboutthat, scares me. I also read a book about this, even if fantasy is not my favorite genre. But, coming back to your story, I was saying that that situation scared me. Yes, because thinking that my grandchildren, for example, could live in a world like that, one day, is really, really horrible! Maybe they will be like that little girl at the end of the story, who smiles despite thee situation. (That passage made me cry harder and admire that little girl!)
Teresa has been very kind to give the doll to her; and i think that one day, when that girl will grow up, she will understand what Terry meant by saying:
""(...) don't forget about what's important.""
I liked a lot all th other characters, too. GiulTristen was only worried for Teresa, so in my opinoin he yelled at her because of that; and I suffer, because I'm very sympathetic to those characters, or Teresa, who, probably, had felt guilty for having told him those things. You mentioned it in the story, although you didn't use the word "guilt". This remembers me about my father, who sometimes tells me:
"You are lucky, because the last time you saw your best friend before her death, you weren't in a fight; me, a week before my dad died (and the last time I saw him) I fought with him. And this is the last thing I remember about us."
I told this to you because i think he feels guilty, too, like
Wht can I say about Berti? Well, the question she asked was very important and it had a very deep meaning. And in the end, I'm happy to hear that Terry said that they live for a reason and that she understood what they live for. She is lucky, too, because sometimes it is not easy to understand for what we live for, to find a reason why.
This story is fantastic, Aurora! It talks about family, friendship, love, life, sadness and hope... important themes and important and strong and deep emotions. It's beautiful!
There would be a lot of passages I could copy, but I think I would copy the whole storye then. :9 Yes, ecause your writing captured my attention since the first word.
I'm proud of Giulia, Jared, Terry and Berti. They fight (and Berti fiught) with all theyir strength, they have been always brave. Their behavior (and that of all people) is admirable.
I don't know if I agree with Terry's words:
""I'd rather be stupid than dead!""
I don't know, really. This is a difficult thing to talk about; and it's difficult to say yes or no, because I have never lived a situation like that (and, obviously, I hope i won't).
Your story is full of questions, and reflections. It's incredible! I loved it. It's sad, but sad stories teach many, many things.
SkullKidMajora chapter 1 . 5/23/2017
I loved this! It pulled at every emotion I had - I fall in deep with stories like this. It makes me get absorbed and forget about what's around me, so kudos to you! This was incredible and perfectly well written. Definitely keep writing! If you can, check out my story Sold My Soul For Rock 'N' Roll. It's currently two chapters with weekly updates!
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