|Reviews for Jedza|
| Mislav chapter 3 . 3/15
Excellent finale. Really gory and disturbing. I didn't expect Jedza to murder Pawel so soon, I thought she would kill him during the final battle. I kind of hoped that Krystina would survive, but I guess the dark ending was more appropriate. The search scene near the end was especially intense and creepy. The last line was a killer. Jedza truly is terrifying. I wonder what will she be up to next. My favorite part was: "With an arachnid grace she crawled towards me, her once snow white skin gore splattered and mouth twisted into a bloody sneer. I would not scream as she embraced me in her death slicked hands. She was so close I could see myself reflected in her glossy eyes, a dead woman who would not give her the satisfaction of my suffering. The claws were like knives digging into my breast, a plunge of icy numbness which seized my heart in a vice grip and tore it from my chest. The scream buried in my throat finally erupted in a feeble death rattle as Jedza brandished my heart as if it were a trophy, the ruby fluid of life still beating in her grasp.
This is the way my story ends. My heart belonging to the witch as I sank into the bitter pit of death."
Chilling. Keep up the great work. You are very talented. I really liked this.
| Mislav chapter 2 . 3/14
Wow! I definitely didn't expect that kind of development. Great job developing the characters and building up the atmosphere. The part where Krystina discovered Grzegorz's... wounds was especially disturbing. The way Jedza she smiled at Krystina before going into room gave me the creeps. Krystina was right about her. I also didn't expect Grzegorz to be dead by the morning. The way you described his dead body was especially gruesome. I wonder how will Krystina try to exact her revenge on, and will she succeed. This reminds me of Slavic vampire mythology, where they are much more... primal, and closer to witches. My favorite parts were: "She was standing near the grand staircase draped in shadows. Her eyes were as black as coals and flowing hair darker than midnight. The diffuse moonlight from the windows gave her already pale skin a preternatural sheen. She looked ethereal, like a spirit from beyond the grave. Her blood red lips parted into a cold smile, tiny fangs protruding from the overbite in her mouth."
"Dozens of Grzegorz's associates had come to pay their respects. Russians, Romanians, Albanians, even the Chinese had all come to know this man in one way or another but there was not a single soul here who saw what I saw, heard his pitiful pleas that night, felt the torturous scars carved across his body and as the memories of that night flooded my mind my resolve broke in a deluge of tears that shattered my demeanor like glass. A tidal wave of grief sent me to my knees, clouding my vision and any ounce of compassion I had left. Tender hands lifted me from the cold ground, empty condolences whispered into my ear but I continued to cry towards the merciless sky.
In my fury of unimaginable pain all I could see was her. Visions of her decapitated head impaled upon a spike, ebon eyes wide yet unseeing and smile forever erased from her blood red lips. Her tiny arms and legs dismembered and set aflame until her ashes scatter into the wind. Finally her heart cut from her chest, a bloody sacrifice to Fate itself which lay entombed in my dresser drawer.
I thought these things, wished death upon Grzegorz's unholy child under the leaden sky which began to weep tears of snow."
Chilling. Looking forward to reading more.
| Mislav chapter 1 . 3/14
Very interesting and intriguing first chapter. You developed Krystina's character really well. The story pulled me right in. You really described Krystina's feelings, desires and motivations in an interesting and believable way. She is both passionate and vicious, determined and calculated. The way she started pimping out young girls and women to the men frequenting her club was especially cold and shrewd. Her thoughts on Grzegorz's daughter were chilling. This part really captured what kind of person she was: "So I gritted my teeth and aimed to please. It was the longest nine months of my life as I tended to her every need. As her stomach grew larger with child so did the congeniality between us, at least from her end. She even grew to look at me as her friend, much to my resentment. If only she had known what Grzegorz meant to me, what she meant to me. I don't dream anymore, not since I was a little girl but in my waking hours I would fantasize about the good queen Anastazja as just another whore in my nightclub giving birth on the bed where dozens of men took her while the king and I ruled the land.
Grzegorz sounds like an interesting-and intimidating-character. The way he came on to Krystina was very forward and dominant, and she was obviously into it. The way he punished her was pretty cruel, but effective. And she still loved him anyway. I wonder why he chose Anastazja instead.
You're really good at setting the story up and developing characters right away. When I started reading, I thought that the title referred to Krystina. I wonder is there really something off about the daughter, or is that just Krystina projecting it on to her. Looking forward to seeing what this story will really be about, and how will the things develop.
| She Who Loves Pineapples II chapter 3 . 1/11/2018
[myself in alcohols intoxicating]
Little typo; should be "alcohol's"
[ Day in and day out the tender kiss of the bottle to my lips was the only affection that stirred my soul and as the vodka sluiced warm in my mouth, fiery in my mouth and scorching in my stomach my mind raced with inhibitionless respite.]
I thought this sentence was a little awkward; I wouldn't have "in my mouth" repeated within the paragraph and after the comma after the first "mouth" I'm not sure which clause is modifying what.
[I can feel her presence wafting through the old timbers and hallways like a miasma.]
I love this description.
...Actually, I love your description in general; comparing the people to Crows was another great metaphor.
Still, after establishing how loyal the men are it seems like Pawel came around to killing Jedza too suddenly. In a minute he goes from "she's just a kid and you're crazy" to "sure I'll kill her" just because of Krystyna's sex appeal? Seems too sudden. I could see him agreeing to it that quickly though if he already had suspicions about Jedza. If he, after a minute, lowered his voice and confessed he had noticed something about her before but was afraid to say anything to anyone else I could see it.
In a similar way, I don't see how everyone would immediately connect the severed head to Jedza. Maybe there could be something to incriminate her on the head? Also in your description of the body I'm kind of confused "a nub where his head should be" makes me think she found a headless body but then it says she found a head? Was the whole body there but the head cut off?
Nice gory details.
Wait, so that's the end? It's not marked as complete. I wasn't expecting that.
So, is Krystyna's soul or something existing within Jedza? The fact that it ended with "this is the way my story ends" and began with her introducing herself made me think she is telling this story or thinking back on it from a later time but I suppose it could be the afterlife. That's always a question with first person past tense stories that end with the narrator's death.
Now, in response to review replies... I can't say I agree that you've made Krystyna more sympathetic in chapter 2 and 3. I still don't feel sorry for her or like her (as a person.) it's not like that's a bad thing; I think she was a well-developed and authentic character, but if it was your INTENTION to make her sympathetic/likeable you may want to consider making a few changes. Maybe showing her exhibit genuine selflessness towards Gregorz would help (so far, she's mostly come across as self-serving in her relationship with him. Which is again not a bad thing, but is unsympathetic.)
Also, I did know Jedza wasn't a normal kid. Not sure if something in my review implied otherwise? But that was definitely clear.
| She Who Loves Pineapples II chapter 2 . 1/7/2018
The part where Krystyna sees Grzegorz's injury is pretty gross (in a good way I mean, since I'm sure that was the intent.) it made me feel a little sick.
I wonder why it took Jedza eight years to kill him. I wonder if it had anything to do with Krystyna discovering it or if that was a coincidence.
Grzegorz is an interesting character. He's involved with some pretty evil things but it seems he has compassion for the people in his life - he genuinely loved Anastazja and grieved for her, he shows concern for Krystyna in trying to hide his injury from her, and he allows Jedza to "feed" from him with no other apparent reason than that he loves her (rather than sending the demonic baby away or killing her as many might have done.) its interesting and it would have been cool to see more of him before he was killed off.
| She Who Loves Pineapples II chapter 1 . 12/30/2017
This is off to an intriguing start. You develop your narrator well, using the kind of details to show and not tell us what an awful person she is. It makes me wonder if “Jedza” will really be as awful as Krystyna sees her as and if she’ll really be the villain in this story; after all, there’s something very ironic about a pimp who just smiled about a person’s death condemning a baby.
I like the details that describe the baby in the end, comparing eyes to raisins and whatnot. It’s super creepy and I’ve never heard a similar metaphor before – usually “creepy black eyes” are compared to coal or black pools or something like that. Raisins are so far the best metaphor for actually making me feel creeped out/disgusted by fictional eyes!
| Electrumwriter chapter 1 . 11/12/2017
I admire the boldness of authors who are prepared to try a villain protagonist story of any real length. I seem to recall some of your brief one shots had villain protagonists as well, but this looks like it’s going to be at least a novella which is quite a different matter.
Krystyna is a hateful character, that’s well established from the get go. “Hoping for the worst” when the question arises if the baby lives… yeah… what a start. Another reviewer did mention that they prefer to be able to sympathise at least a bit with the narrator, but I have been able to withstand reading A Clockwork Orange and Der Hahn ist Tot, so I will persist. I used to be part of a reading group and another member said she thought the villain protagonist of Der Hahn ist Tot is more repulsive because she is a woman and that she thought that made her even more unacceptable than the narrator of A Clockwork Orange. I’m not the one who made that assertion, but please bear it in mind.
Interesting touch with the fortune teller. I wonder whether fortune telling will turn out to be real in this world. Maybe it doesn’t matter. If the narrator believes in it, that might be all that matters. With the evil queen in Snow White.
The narrator’s role as pimp is also difficult to stomach and ensures my opinion of her is a lot lower. I appreciate how you’ve handled the gypsy’s possible prophecy. Having given it all in one piece earlier and then compared parts of it with milestones in the unfolding story. That’s the way to handle prophecy correctly and it still is not certain whether or not it is real. It sounded like it could be the very generic sort of thing a phony in real life would say.
I think I best liked the end of this chapter which pays homage to Snow White and what the evil queen’s POV might possibly have been. But where are Doc, Grumpy and Dopey?
| Katie Grey chapter 1 . 11/5/2017
This is definitely an interesting piece. The setting, the narrator's tone of voice, and her extreme bitterness all make it very unique. The love story, while compelling, was simply summarized and I couldn't quite relate to it. Obviously backstory is imptorant, but it did take up a while chapter, so it should definitely be told effectively.
I think the thing I liked the most was how angry the protagonist is. It's not common for a main character to be so unlikable, and it's definitely something new and fresh. However, perhaps just a few redeeming qualities would help, I don't want to hate the protagonist, I want to relate to them.
| Imperious chapter 2 . 11/2/2017
Interesting story! I liked the vivid imagery you wrote, it really allows the reader to picture every scene that takes place. The characterization of the main character is also really clear, and through her thoughts we get to see how evil Jedza is.
I think one thing that could be written better is that the main character's story is not very compelling, because she is already depicted as not a very nice person, so the reader might not care too much about what happens to her.
| YasuRan chapter 2 . 10/29/2017
This is certainly one of the most unique takes on the Snow White fairy-tale. I like how you set up this dark, gothic atmosphere through the surroundings and descriptions, bringing the monstrousness behind little Snow's beauty through the stepmother figure's perception of her. While the latter is the furthest thing from a saint, I find her a fascinating character and look forward to seeing how her relationship with the child evolves (or devolves, if the implications of this chapter's closing lines are anything to go by).
If I do have to critique something, it would be the diction in some places, in which a word seems to be missing or awkwardly placed. It's not terribly distracting though, and could easily be remedied with a proof-reader, should you wish to avail of one.
Regardless, keep up the good work!
| Redz chapter 1 . 10/25/2017
Here from the review game.
Hm... I'm not a fan of the writing style used in this piece, it calls too much attention to itself with all the fancy words like quietude. There are also a few SPaG errors (person's in the first sentence and a general lack of commas). Also, in the first read I didn't see a problem with the beginning, but upon re-reading it, it doesn't make much sense. If the protagonist has been the wife's assistant for the duration of the pregnancy, surely she must be aware that the wife was giving birth or close to it - the call shouldn't have been much of a surprise.
What I like about this is the protagonist's unashamed callousness and cruelty. She makes no effort to hide it, she tells it straight like in "operation of underage prostitutes" and the "giving birth on the bed" bit. It's different and refreshing. Rather than her relationship with Grzegorz, which doesn't really hold much interest, I'm more curious about /her/, her moral code and how she evolved to be that way, and what she's capable of; I would have loved to read more about that.
Hope you found some of this helpful.
| M3rcy chapter 1 . 10/9/2017
Here from Review Game.
First off, the thing I like about this story is the way it is written. It has a lot of lyrical sentences and it flows quite nicely. Yet it also has a sharpness in it's speech, which feels present because of the main characters bitterness and coldness. I also liked how there was a lot of plot in such a condensed piece of writing, as it conveyed a lot and made the piece seem more full and built up nicely. Such as giving a huge backstory of how she met her lover and what happened since then up to the birth of the baby.
The thing I didn't like was probably the main protagonist herself. I know she was meant to be ruthless, but she just seemed so cold hearted. I've known people like this, and I guess that's what scares me the most about her. I guess if it had been based on a male protagonist, I would've accepted this kind of harshness more as men are sometimes a little more cold in these types of stories. But I felt she was quite a cruel person, in how she treated the girls at how club and even her whole mannerism.
Now, I'm not saying this is something bad in the story, just something I didn't like. But for the story itself, I don't think another type of character could've fit the role, and she did seem real, which is a great thing to realize in a story.
Also- I liked the fact it was set in Poland (Eastern Europe) as it was an interesting world to dive into.
Hope this review helped! Bye!