|Reviews for Womb to Tomb|
| Guest 7/9/12 . chapter 22
Wow. That was such a good story! I think I'll favorite both the story and you!
| Dramamamapwnsall 10/9/11 . chapter 22
I really love the story. I've only recently become obsessed with WSS, but I really am obsessed. And you have an AWESOME fic here. Sad it's done, though.
| RebelFaerie 12/16/10 . chapter 22
Okay, so here's my lame disclaimer: apparently my story alerts have stopped working. And no one decides to TELL ME when you've finished this story, so I have to go on a quest and find out for myself. Which kind of, only not really, accounts for the reason that I'm reviewing this chapter a solid month after it was published. I'm bitter. Boo the Powers that Be for turning off my story alerts without telling me. But anyway.
I'm so happy about this story! And I want to give Riff and Graziella each hugs individually. I love the scene with Ricardo and Anita dancing; it's so incredibly sweet, and just gives us hope that even when things are as bad as they were, there's always a way to move on.
This story was wonderful, and I loved reading it, and I wish that I hadn't had a month-long gap before reviewing the ending because I used to be SO ON TOP OF THINGS... But anyway. Well done. Very well done. I don't usually follow stories because it takes too much commitment, but I'm glad I got all the way through this one. Virtual hi-fives are in order to you :)
| viennacantabile 11/7/10 . chapter 22
GAH. The end? Really? You've had this one in the works for so long that it's just so hard to believe that it's over. I'm going to miss the guaranteed updates, because they've been an opportunity to read a really good story. More about that later!
Okay, so the ending—was both bitter and sweet, and, especially given the first chapter, so very, very fitting. I love that we basically get closure for most of the characters involved, and the sense that everything really has come full circle. People are starting to move on, and it's so good to see them absorbing what's happened, picking up the pieces, and going on again. I love how the past catches up with Anita and Graziella, and how they're finally able to move on. I also love that Anita stopped dancing after the movie and has only just begun again. It's a beautiful, evocative idea, and so symbolic of everything she had to go through—she stopped that physical expression because so much was taken from her that night, and now she's finally healing, which is wonderful. I have to admit I secretly think that Graziella eventually did love Tiger, after all, but I understand why she divorced him in WtT, so it's all good. XD
Added to that, I did love the contrast of the three teen relationships: Tony and Hannah engaged, Bernardo and Vio all but, and Riff and Izzy kaput in favor of the beginnings of Elvis and Izzy. I love that we got to see their relationships grow and develop and change over the course of these pivotal days, and how they ultimately all realize they have to grow up. It means different things for each of them, but in the end it's all about getting serious about what (and who) is important to you. And then, having given us past and present, there's the future in Pip and the different relations between the gangs. YES, LITTLE CHILDREN, PLAY NICELY AND MAKE US HAPPY.
-"This family is used to growing up early," Anita said wryly, taking a sip of her coffee.
-but Maria had a feeling he was starting to realize that he couldn't be a grownup and a Shark for very long.
-they had made their peace twenty years ago, and now it was their children's turn to do so.
And just the ending, which is such a satisfying conclusion. :)
And now on to the fic as a whole! Granted, no fic is ever perfect, but there is so much here that you did so very, very well with a really difficult premise. I was already ridiculously proud of you for NIB, but that was definitely an easier task than WtT, which involved so many new characters and new scenarios and a ton of backstory to sort through. I may have helped you come up with some, but you were the one who brought them to life here! And in a fic of this size, scale, and ambition, that's no mean feat. (Btw, you should know that you're one of the very few people I'd trust Vio with entirely—you got her perfectly, and made me so, so happy. Thank you a million times. XD)
One of the things I thought you did really well was emphasize the relationships between the parents and the children. All their interactions, be it Jet or Shark family, felt so authentic and really reiterated once again how well you know the characters. You did a great job of showing why family is so important this time around, and how things have changed so much and yet not at all. I loved seeing how the dads and moms had changed with parenthood, and what that meant to them, from the good relationships to the bad. Anybodys reflecting on telling her son he was too young particularly sticks out in my memory as an example of the past catching up to the present and reminding everyone that yes, nearly twenty years have gone by. Kids become parents of kids themselves, and as always, no one really knows what to do other than do the best they can and hope everything turns out all right. That, at least, never changes.
I've mentioned this before, but props to you on Tony and Hannah. You gave them such a genuinely sweet love story that I did care about them, despite the feeling that this fic was more about the gangs than them, just as WSS hinted at, haha. They were so idealistic, and so true to the spirit of the original Tony, that I really rooted for them. And to contrast them with the doomed relationship of Riff and Izzy was great. Riff is all about the Jets; Tony is the opposite, and this is how it works out.
As I've also mentioned, I thought you did a consistently great job on Anita. Her character is seriously difficult, and I never ever felt anything she said or did was uncharacteristic or off. You always got the right tone with her, especially in her interactions with Maria and Bernardo. There were a number of other characters, too, who basically made my day whenever they popped up: Rosalia (and Indio and Luis), Bernice, Pepe, Consuelo, the hedgehogs, Minnie, etc. Whether it was for the lulz (you know who I'm talking about XD) or the sniffles, they stood out. Props to you for that. XD
By far the best thing about this fic is Pip. This is definitely my favorite ever OC of yours, because he's such a great, great character. There's both humor and pathos inherent in him, and a wonderful echo of both Anybodys and A-Rab running through him. He's that character that's always striving for something he just knows is amazing, but when he maybe gets it, he finds out it's a little different from what he thought. His growth here is fantastic; I loved how all his little quirks (being short, his various reactions to blood) all worked to establish his character and then take it to where he ended up. I loved everything about this kid, from his name (Doc's name Phillip Pipsqueak Pip is just unbelievably perfect) to his parentage to his personality. He is just too, too adorable and I want more of him. XD
Basically—this whole fic, I feel, is about taking the lessons from the past, learning from them, and, most importantly, moving on. Because that is what they all do here—reach a kind of closure, especially after Chino dies. They atone for their mistakes (Graz comes to mind here) and, as much as is ever really possible, try and fix them. And as I've said a couple times, the difference here? Is family, and what the Jets and Sharks *did* learn and apply from that last time. It's about growing up and realizing that even if you don't have that family, you do have it in the Jets/Sharks. Which is the whole point to their being in the gangs to begin with. Belonging, family, and growing up. Huh. :)
In the end, I can say all I want, but what really matters is: was I affected by your fic? Did it make me think? That's what makes me remember and come back to stories. And the answer to this is a resounding YES. Well done, my dear. :)
| justalittle l o o n y 11/4/10 . chapter 22
Aw, thanks doll. I loved Pip and Nibbles, and Anita and Ricardo. Somehow, I agree with Tony. Riff, Izzy and Elvis will be friends again one day (maybe with a little help from Ava). Personally, I feel that Maria and Graziella are very similar in the way that they'll never truly fall for someone else. You did a brilliant job with this story, thank you.
| lovelylittleflowerchild 11/3/10 . chapter 22
d'awwwwwwwwwwwwwwww! :3 the little fluffy bunnies of my heart are hopping for joy! It's such a perfect ending to a perfect story!
| dreamer 3097 11/3/10 . chapter 22
this is good
| Iwait4theRain 11/2/10 . chapter 22
:.) that was absolutley beautiful. This was a wonderful ending to an amazing fic that I had the great priviledge of reading. You are an amazing writer and I cannot wait until I get to read more of your wonderful stories. Congratulations!
| ArianaKristine 11/2/10 . chapter 22
Wow. This was just beautiful. I love the character development and the eerie parallels between the children. Lovely story, and I hope to see more from you!
| Guest 10/30/10 . chapter 21
I have to say, I thought the opening to this chapter was really effective, especially given there were only so many ways you could have done it. I do like the contrast between the police of yesterday and the police of now; Schrank and Krupke were completely ineffective, but Ricky's taken the lessons he learned from being a former gang member and used it to make the police presence relevant, if not everything it could be.
D'aww. That was for Elvis, btw. I have to say that despite the whole, you know, macking on his captain's girl thing, he grew up an awful lot tonight. I loved that he admitted to himself that he wasn't the rightful lieutenant, and that he faced the music (or will), and that he basically matured. And admitted he was scared, which is a huge step. And I could definitely see in this chapter the chemistry between he and Izzy, and why they work better than Izzy and Riff ever will. I thought their resolution, especially, was very well written and that their arc was one of the most memorable. CEREAL. Just saying.
Also, for some reason I just loved Baby John and the twins' reunion. Too adorable and so characteristic. Love.
x10 what I said about Pip from last chapter. I definitely think he's the most fully-realized OC you have here, and his section really shone for its depth and because although he's the youngest, you're never really old enough to witness a death, even if you think you are. And for Pip, who's really just entering adolescence though he'd never admit it, it's such a wakeup call that this is real, and it's not just—as he figures out—TV. Sniff. Also, I just thought you should know that when A-Rab helps Pip get into his pajamas, I totally got a mental image of Pip wearing footie pajamas with cowboys or jets all over them, lol.
OOH, THIS SECTION. I remember when you were pondering it, and I think it's turned out really well. It's not sentimental so much as perfectly in character; the hedgehogs would never let themselves get more contemplative than this because they'd get uncomfortable. Instead they'd snap at each other, just as they do here, to try and get past it. Well done! XD
And now I am caught up and have to wait a whole week for the final chapter, sniff. OH WELL, I HAVE HALLOWEEN GOODNESS TO READ. XD
| viennacantabile 10/30/10 . chapter 20
OMG IT'S CHINO. I think? Because the only other possibility I can think of is Maria, and I think Chino's more likely than that. PLUS, IT WOULD BE MEAN TO DEPRIVE ANITA OF HER BESTIE.
I have to admit I'm a little confused as to how everyone knows/assumes Chino's got a gun and wants to kill Tony with it; I tried skimming through past chapters and couldn't find anything. Then again, it's been awhile since I read the whole thing and I probably just missed it—can you point me to the right spot, please? :D
"I don't know if ya've noticed or not, Ice, but we ain't all spring chickens anymore," Gee-Tar pointed out, looking hesitant. "I mean, I just don't think we can all run up an' down the West Side like we used ta."
I think he has a point, and I love that he brought the fact up that they *are* older than they used to be and that things are different, no matter what the Jets want to think. That being said, they had very characteristic, bull-headed reactions to him and Anybodys and particular made me giggle. "OLDER? WHO ARE YOU CALLING OLDER, PUSSY? RAAA!" And when Ice divided up the labor, I was all "O NOES" has he not learned that leaving Action with the baby is not a good idea? I mean, what with Anita and all, he's just not all that much of a team player. -_-
Pip would've liked to say that he had bravely stood amongst the Jets that night, but he didn't; he saw his mother and father and, feeling a surge of safety, darted around the others towards them. He wormed in between them, releasing a small sigh of relief as their hands rested on his shoulders. Things were better and safer here with his father on one side and his mother on the other and the Jets surrounding him—this was where he belonged.
Seriously, that's so sweet. Pip has definitely been the standout character of the fic, and I love that he reverts to his real age in the face of this danger. He just wants his parents, which is what I think they all ultimately want but can't admit or face up to. Parents and children, I'm going to say, is a huge theme here.
Speaking of which, I love that Velma ultimately said to hell with it and showed up anyways. She had to, for her son's sake, and because even though things are different and 19 years later, she still has that love for Ice which means she *has* to do everything she can to make sure he's all right.
"You sick man, setting a bunch of boys on each other like, like it's just some cockfight you make profit from!"
"Because he killed Riff!" It was Anita who spoke now, her fingers curling into fists at her side and her eyes flashing. "I loved Bernardo, but I know what he did! I learned to forgive the Jets, even after everything."
I've said this before, but I think one of the characters you have a fantastic handle on is Anita. I can always hear her speaking, from the rhythm to the accent, and it makes for great authenticity. She's actually one of the highlights of your work, I think. Also, ooh, Maria:
"He killed your father!"
What I thought was so interesting about this line is that it was such a direct echo of Chino's own "He killed your brother!" Except the outcome, of course, is different. And it plays out in how Chino and Maria respond to delivering the news; hate vs. love. Which is why everything happens the way it does.
And finally, poor, poor Bernardo. In the end, all he wants is a father figure, and what he gets is misguided Chino. What a letdown. But I'm glad to see that he comes to his senses and ultimately puts his life on the line for Tony.
AND NOW TO SEE WHAT ACTUALLY HAPPENS, W00T.
| viennacantabile 10/30/10 . chapter 19
GAH AM FINALLY CATCHING UP. Endless apologies for getting so far behind, and a mea culpa ahead of time because I am still woozy and so I doubt my reviews will be any good. Sorry. -_-
First, GAH, FINALLY GRAZIELLA. GOOD FOR HER. I am very proud of her because it's not something I think the younger version of her would have done (and in fact didn't do) and it shows her personal growth and how her love for her son and Riff pushes her to be a better mother and person. It's hard for her, and I can see why she in particular never told the story before, and it's great that she finally faced up to her past and told her son the truth, as well as giving us some light into her perspective and how she saw that summer of 1957.
(Although, I love that Riff totally called bullshit on the story. It's a very believable reaction, because it really is crazy, history repeating itself so closely; he's a smart cookie and also it cracked me up. XD)
"I sure had some moves back then."
YES YOU DID, GRAZIELLA.
Also, awww, I see what you did there with the twins! It was a nice recall of the A-Rab/Baby John scene, and developed with the actual Shark threat, was very effective, especially because for the twins, the option of escape is so much more present for them. Unlike A-Rab and Baby John, they really could get out and never think about it again. But they know it's not that smple.
I also thought that Minnie and Sissy's section was great. I really loved that it showed the passing of time, and that Minnie had learned and remembered things from the last time. Sissy didn't have to go through it, but this time she's drawn in and learning from her little sister-in-law about what being a Jet's girl really meant and still means. It's a good reversal of roles, and really shows how these two have developed from NIB.
NEXT CHAPTER! XD
| Iwait4theRain 10/29/10 . chapter 21
That was an AMAZING chapter!
| lovelylittleflowerchild 10/29/10 . chapter 21
OMG! I think I was going to shoot something if I didn't know what happend! (although, I probably shouldn't say that out loud) Boy, what a shocker that one was! A very good pinata of emotions if I must say so myself! :3
| justalittle l o o n y 10/29/10 . chapter 21
Cool chapter! I loved the last line, and Chino's death was so expected it became unexpected. That's a great method.
On a completely unrelated note, my band is performing Dream On.