|Reviews for Tales of the Bhaalspawn|
| Blue-Inked Frost 12/25/12 . chapter 6
Squeeee, another chapter! This makes me very happy to see. :D I enjoyed it! The battle and logistics and Mulahey's loss of sense were very interesting to read. I liked your description of using the strategy of bringing up Tazok.
(By the way, I made a complete idiot of myself in the last review - 'first person present tense' fiddlesticks, 'third person limited present tense' was what I meant. Perhaps the awesome immediacy of your prose and insight into the point-of-view character's head is to be blamed for my mistake? :P)
I also liked the use & description of Larloch's Minor Drain. An intriguing & useful spell, that one. :)
The description of Mulahey's corpse falling was nicely gruesome.
Good chapter! I liked the ending line.
| Blue-Inked Frost 12/11/12 . chapter 5
*grins* What an excellent chance to re-read this story from the start to remind myself of what came before! :) I like how the improved first chapter really brings out Kher's and Taev's characters; it's a lovely introduction to the story. I especially liked the library organisation and those rats and cats. Good chapter titles for 1 and 2, too!
I really liked the description of the mines at the beginning of Chapter Five - very atmospheric.
A very minor thing, but it struck me there were a few too many dashes in the part beginning "A man – a miner", as if the prose went a bit too disjointed there for a little while.
I don't think many other Baldur's Gate fics use first person present tense, so that is cool you're doing something (well, several things) different. :) The good things about that technique are the sense of immediacy to the action and inhabiting the inside of the protagonist's head and feeling all the protagonist's emotions, although I think it can be less effective when the pacing slows down to provide longer descriptions or explain logistics and give fantasy exposition. If it's okay to make a generalisation like this, I think the parts of your story that shine the most are the parts where you're using the advantages of first person present tense.
""Pale," her sister replies, now twisting a strand of hair between her fingers – hair that she once, in the right light, might have called it golden. Now, it is coated with the dust of many miles and flecked with the blood of her assailants, and it has taken on the pallor of ash." - Aww, the life of adventure already affects them so dramatically. I liked this description and the image it created, though since they're in the kobold mines it feels a little early.
I liked the intensity of the battle with kobolds - the Nashkel mines are dangerous from the point of view of the characters, and that part really gave off that impression, especially with Kher and Taev not realising/knowing what they were. That emotive reaction to the thick of battle is one of the strengths of the form of narrative you're using.
And - poor Xan. Heh. Always getting locked up and horribly treated by Mulahey like that. Good to see him turning up and getting rescued.
A lovely, longer chapter - definitely an enjoyable read. I'm sorry if I carried on too long. I find all the characters you're using entertaining to read. I liked reading this adventure through Nashkel, and I'm definitely looking forward to the confrontation with Mulahey and further adventures!
| Blue-Inked Frost 11/13/10 . chapter 4
I liked the use of Jaheira's druidy knowledge in this chapter. Hello and goodbye to yet another couple of assassins! I liked the 'Recompense' line. In Nashkel, this is good. :) The first adventure. You've gotten to this point quite quickly in the chapter, good job of being succinct in your writing.
| Blue-Inked Frost 11/13/10 . chapter 3
I liked this chapter. :) A minor thing about dialogue capitalisation that'll probably take me longer to explain than it did in the story: when there's a first sentence followed by a speech tag followed by a different sentence, the different sentence is capitalised, and usually there's also a full stop after the speech tag. New dialogue sentences get capitalised. For example: "Pardon me," he said. "I'm looking for rogue Bhaalspawn." 'Imoen inclines her head to where a guard stands, talking to Kher."[T]hey...' 'Instead reaching to draw the attention of the woman before he says, "[T]here is…"
I liked the comedy of the hardship of adventuring compared to adventuring novels. That man and his story about hunting the ogre is quite an interesting small encounter. I thought your description of Khalid and Jaheira was good, and 'Auntie Jaheira' was funny. An enjoyable read!
| micahlostthegame 10/19/10 . chapter 1
i rilly like it can you hellp me with a story of mine
| TempermentalRainbow 10/19/10 . chapter 1
It's not terrible i liked it, keep up the good work
| Blue-Inked Frost 10/17/10 . chapter 2
I liked this chapter and its greater level of detail. Kher came across well to me-more thoughtful, less aggressive than Taev, a sheltered reader character. With the reference to the Seldarine, is she an elf?
If Sarevok wasn't saying 'your ward' for some plot reason already, shouldn't be be saying 'your wards' if he thinks they both are, or 'the tall ward' if just one? I thought the description of him and that moment was well done; you conveyed the awfulness of that moment of losing one's father figure. I liked Kher's use of the illusion and the sleep spells. And I saw Taev's more practical, aggressive approach too. Really good chapter!
| Blue-Inked Frost 10/15/10 . chapter 1
Two Charnames have potential to be twice the fun, and your summary makes them sound like interesting characters. :) But I think this chapter could have gone into more depth to introduce them as characters and what makes them tick. The summary says Kher's a mage, but in the actual story I think one could only make a guess at it based on the bibliophilia, and she seems to have much the same personality as Taev. The way the paragraphs don't have a full space between them on the screen makes it hard to tell who's talking, especially in the first parts, and the characters seem to have similar voice patterns. Without the character names and looking back at the summary to remind myself which is the mage and which is the fighter, I wouldn't be able to tell which dialogue belonged to whom. (They also both seem to have quite similar personalities to Imoen.) Even in fandoms like Baldur's Gate, it can be difficult to fully sell the readers on one's new characters compared to the existing ones, and I found this introduction of two at once more confusing than interesting. Just on a minor point, I even find the names chosen not very distinctive; short, meaningless fantasy keyboard-mashings that aren't very memorable. For example, 'Dynaheir' (long, unique, and more obviously pronounceable than whether Taev has two syllables or not), 'Jaheira' (ditto), 'Branwen' (Earth name, meaning doesn't actually match the character). Names become more memorable as the reader gets to know the characters, but it's another factor that adds to my confusion here.
I do like your writing style and it sounds like you've got some good ideas, but I think the story would benefit by having the characters describe each other in more detail, explaining their personal histories and hobbies and showing where their personalities diverge, why this story *has* to be told with two Charnames and what separates them from each other. Gate/Off also does the two Bhaalspawn trick, and although I think its first chapter is slightly less grammatical than yours, it takes care to distinguish the protagonists.
I liked your description of Taev's shoulder-spiked armour, and the detail of the contents of the packs, though your story is now the top Google result for the phrase "chick of cheese" and I think you may have meant 'chunk'. I also liked the description of Kher watching the rats and the cats. When there's more character interaction and detail I think it'll be more enjoyable. If this is going to be Cannibalistic Skittles' Baldur's Gate I novella, then I'm thrilled this exists and look forward to reading more of it. :)