Reviews for The Songs are Fairer Elsewhere
Dreams of Summertime chapter 33 . 8/2/2016
This is awesome! I've never read a fic like this! I am interested to see if you include Thingol in this fic though. (Since he stays behind etc.)

I do get a bit confused by the names but thats ok. I hope the grumpy elf gets a wife sometime...
Laerthel chapter 32 . 7/26/2016
Hullo-hullo, I am back! (more or less :) )

Accurate characterisation of Nahar, I guess... :) I'm not much of a rider myself (to my chagrin), though I can more or less handle a horse... as long as they don't PRANCE into gallop (gallop is OK, but the prancing is a huge nope). You?

I was glad of Orome's appearance, and to have the Elves falling asleep in his soothing aura was truly a great idea, very logic in its own way. Undisturbed rest was what they needed the most. And ah, the first dreams of distant lands and perhaps Valinor... :)

I must mention, though, that even if I like you characterisation of Orome and the way he behaves, his thoughts sometimes seem a bit too... simple. Or I don't know how to put it... "first things first" or "way too much" or "oh, right" are not the kind of phrases I would prefer to use in a Vala's thoughts, I believe :) . Also, when you're using archaic forms, things like "keep thee in check", though they're gramatically correct (of course...), sound a bit out of place.

I like how the Vanyar are the most at ease in Orome's presence - okay, that's kind of evident, but important.
Orome as part tree is a strange thought for me, but not wrong - I like it the way Treebeard liked the name of "Hobbits". :)

Well-well. I look forward to the next instalments, and kudos on all the work you put in this story! ;)
Laerthel chapter 29 . 7/8/2016
Before stating anything, my dear, I must admit that your speed in writing makes me speechless... :) :) :) but I'm really glad to see that you're this inspired. And - though sadly, I haven't had this experience myself for a relatively long time - I know that the random, "agressive" waves of inspiration usually leave the best results.

Political discussions, I believe, are not really the strong point of anyone. It is definitely getting more elaborate and thought through (sorry if that expression doesn't exist in English).
I liked how informally the kings addressed Ellinde and Ulcawe. I admit I thought of it as a solely political (or perhaps psychological) move; it might not be the case, but I can't help it:)
There was something thought-provoking in their simple decision that there was nothing to do, the faith of Elven-kind was not in their hands anymore; and also that they have failed as leaders. It's just very... un Elf-like (and primarily, un Noldo-like) - but in this early period, 'tis also very accurate. Feanáro, or even Finwe in his later days of rule would have never,ever told anything like this. Back in this "before history'-setting, though, the Noldor don't have their aggressively arrogant attitudes yet, and that is nice to see :)
If I wrote this story, they would probably all be sulking and trying to change things; but again, that would not be very realistic. These Elves are still not alienated from nature, or the "natural" prospect of living, when they don't get to rule their own or each other's lives.
(If you're about to write any story in a more "modern" setting, though, I would hereby warn you to restrain yourself from having any character ask any king "you cannot deny this, can you...?" :) :) while here it is still realistic, and I actually liked it much, otherwise it would probably count as overlooking the King's authority).

Oh, I like the effect the dimming light and darkening times have on the Elves. General gloominess, tiredness and loss of aims and motivation are all accurate. I also really welcome "Finwe being Finwe".:) I think you capture his character quite well - otherwise than I do, but quite well. And yes, he absolutely has to possess some of Feanor's later skills.
Coloring fire is actually a pretty good idea - I don't know if you have done that in your life, but I must admit I've had my fair share of creating gold/silver/green/etc sparks in summer camps. Good news for you: I don't know if you actually searched that up - kudos if you did - but white flames are done with a kind of natural salt, so it's even possible. And it makes a nasty rattling sound when you throw it in. (Sorry for... being myself and typing all this down here, truly).
Um. Other than that... I actually liked that the thing proved dangerous for some reason, and didn't work - it somehow made it more real. Because yes, when you're experimenting with such things, accidents happen, and things don't always work out well. It was also very nice to see how Finwe had this natural ability and/or sensibility to make people happy; or even recognising the importance of making them happy. That's what makes a good king. In my mind he's already very stern and hardened by this time, so it's actually refreshing to see him otherwise.

The company's parting and return from the forest was at the same time thrilling and deeply unsettling, so as the death of our unknown Elf. It's perfectly natural for the Quendi to hysterically fear death, since they haven't even experienced the fullness of their existence yet...
I think some very interesting thoughts appeared in the death scene, but some opportunities were missed. I think it would have been IC for Ellinde to inquire (or harass poor creature to his death with his curiosity, as you like..) what exactly he was feeling. Why he was feeling it. Why and when he passed the turning point of not fearing, but actually embracing death. The appearing mantra of "agony is more terrible and fearful than death, even if we don't know it" is very accurate, but it was not entirely exploited. All we see is that the Elves are gloomy - their nature and the circumstances cause their gloominess, but we don't really get into the drama of what could be the enitre world's first existential crisis in your story! Emotional drama, yes, there is plenty of that, and it is well written... but when emotional drama gets general, bits of folkloric wisdom and philosophy appear.
(Of course, this is not a philosophical writing, so don't get this as a piece of criticism, rather as some... pondering! :) )

I like the appearances of Hwesta, and I admit that his growing up was maybe the only plausible thing that truly referred to time. I liked that.

And... oh. The awakening of the trees? :) And the light! It's very detailedly and interestingly written. I'm looking forward to the next installments.
Laerthel chapter 22 . 7/3/2016
"We are no longer living - we are surviving" - oh my, that was powerful!

I also liked the representation of danger... the most fearful thing is the Unknown, and the fact that neither Ellinde nor Ulcawe has a clue what happened to them just makes the whole thing even more terrifying. I'm looking forward to see how this terror ensues, and what the leaders will do - (and to horn-blasts, of course... of my beloved Orome? :) )
Laerthel chapter 18 . 6/26/2016
Wow. Wow. Wow. OK, listen. I found this story weeks ago, and since the summary seemed fairly interesting, I hit 'follow'. Since then, I've been receiving alerts for each new chapter, and with each alert I promised myself I'll start to read when the next one comes. And the next. And the next... since the story is long, I wanted to make sure I had time to finish what was left.
Today, though, I just started to read it, without actually thinking it over, and you know what? I finished the whole thing at one sitting as it was simply FANTASTIC! It's absolutely beyond my grasp HOW did you not get hundreds of reviews on this. But, well, the best stories (at least, what I tend to consider 'best') are overlooked by many...

Well, then let's get to the actually useful (I hope?) part of my review: WHY is your story fantastic.
- The way you build your OC-s is exemplary. Truly. I love OC-s only when they are well written, and you do that absolutely fine. They are detailed and have both their strengths and weaknesses.
- The way events evolve is very realistic. You had me right from the first chapter, where the Elves awoke. I feel a lot of thought and work lurking behind this, and that is something to admire as well... I also liked the first signs of development, for example how they began to hunt, or wear jewels as symbols of power.
- Your writing style in itself is a grand plus. I don't know how on Arda you manage to get on with describing events and landscapes for CHAPTERS, without anything that could be truly considered as "action" or "thrill" - and STILL your story draws me in deeper and deeper, without the SLIGHTEST hint of boredom. (Yes, yes, Ellinde is bored but I am not! :D)
- Early attempts of Elven speeches. THANK YOU. Quendian, it has to be at this early Age. Or, well, before Ages.
- The way Elves think about death is accurate. I love how they cannot comprehend it, and it makes their stomach turn. Also, the scene where Ellinde was first acquainted with death, and discovered the "starless region" was extremely powerful. My favorite thus far, I think.
By the way, at first - before I read your profile and came to understand you actually preferred to write about OC-s -, I actually thought Ellinde would later turn out to be Finwe and Luinilockte Míriel. I thought it might be useful to you to mention this, even if they are OC-s: they somehow seem to mirror them (not copy! mirror... don't get it wrong;) ), Ellinde with his natural leader and organiser abilities, and Luinilockte with her crafty hands. I, of course, came soon to understand they were truly OC-s (even before the actual mention of Finwe) and somehow that just made me love them even more.
(By the way, I always pictured Finwe as unborn. I don't know why... also, I'm convinced that 'Finwe' is not his original name. Thus my initial theory about your characters...:) )
- I love Ulcawe, and cheer every time he appears. Just to mention ;)

Another useful(?) part of the review - a bit of kindly meant advice, if you accept my humble opinion: If I were you, I would pay a little bit more attention to "kings", and by that, I don't mean that I would make them appear more, or converse more with the characters (though maybe, eventually, that will come, and what I will now mention is just a matter of time...). What I want to say is that the kings seem very... distant. Bordering irresponsible, I would say! I have the impression (but correct me if I err), that they hardly even know what is truly going on in the commune. People go missing, and they don't even know about it...? (I understand, no one wants to report it, but truly... On the other hand, that is also true that "registering" each and every Elf has not yet occurred to anyone as an idea, and that is maybe comprehensible in a society where language itself is still in the process of forming).
I also had the impression that the making of the kings' decision in their small council was waaay too swift. (But that might do something with the fact that I'm currently working on an account of a Gondolin Grand Council... you know what, now that I think about it, forget what I just said... :D :D).

Other than that, everything is fine. Truly. Thank you for writing this story, and sorry if you don't like long reviews. And please go on with this! It was (is!) truly a pleasure.

Laerthel
morninsunshines chapter 1 . 2/22/2016
Not much has been written on the awakening. I've always wondered about those first years before they had outside contact. Interesting take. Look forward to reading more.