|Reviews for Betwixt the Stars|
| Emmy Parker chapter 9 . 8/30
I've read this days ago and since then I've been waiting for your update. I want this wonderful story to continue. Please update soon!
| DrinkThemIn chapter 9 . 8/24
Very much enjoying this! I stayed up late and woke early to read it in order to be caught up and now I'm floating in a dream-like state, perhaps a bit like Anne. I was very sorry to read of the passing of your friend a couple of chapters ago (a few months ago). What a beautiful dedication.
I appreciate the blend of the older generations (I live for Anne and Gil fanfic) with the younger generations. I struggle to get through anything that doesn't involve my favourite literary couple...but I'm being pulled. I want to read through Rainbow Valley and further once again before I dive into the fanfic so as to keep them straight in my brain.
Please keep up the good work - you're very, very talented.
| DrinkThemIn chapter 6 . 8/23
New reader here. There's no way she's Rilla. Gah I shall continue on.
| kslchen chapter 9 . 8/23
I think I've already said a thing or two about Melissa, so I'll leave it at this: "AS 4 GB 4 eva" - I see what you did there!
Anne reading Rilla's journal was an interesting interlude. She has an interesting mixture of hindsight and incomprehensibility (as, indeed, all of us late-borns do). She knows how that wars going to end, so Rilla's musings must seem naïve to her at times. At the same time, she can't truly understand what the girls and women back then went through in losing their loved ones, so there's really no way for her to share into that feeling except in the abstract.
I did have to laugh at Anne not knowing who Susan was. I mean, it makes perfect sense for her not to know, but I hope she's going to find out fast. With Anne and Gilbert mostly absent, doing God knows what, Susan was certainly the primary adult figure in Rilla's teenage years, so Anne's going to stumble over her name quite often in that diary!
And then, finally, the narrative leads Anne back to where she first belonged. In the end, you could argue that Ingleside was probably more her home than Green Gables, but Green Gables was the *first* home and anyway, it corresponds better to modern Anne on account of age alone. And you gave us Keiths *and* Wrights, neatly rolled into one, which is certainly a treat! I do wonder if that Historical Society won't yet turn up something. Tales about the Cuthberts' orphan girl must have survived in some family legend or another!
As for the end... I can definitely see why having erotic dreams about you ancestors would be creepy! Poor Anne. For all her curiosity about the past, I bet she'd gladly do away with these creepy dreams altogether.
(Maslow, by the way, isn't too bad as a rudimentary, introductory theory of motivation. As neither David nor Anne have any reason to be aware of the finer workings of the VIE theory, Maslow serves everyone's needs just fine here. I mean, I should know. I spent many a futile hour trying to teach different theories of motivation to decidedly unmotivated students. Oh, the irony! But at least they *understood* Maslow, which is more than can be said for some of those other theories...)
| NotMrsRachelLynde chapter 9 . 8/21
Oh, I have missed updates on this work. And this was a lovely steamy one to enjoy. I loved seeing the similarities between Rob and David and how they pursued those they love. That Blythe restraint and gentlemanliness (almost). The ending was fascinating and interesting to see the soul connection really coming to fruition in this adventure. It was very intense, beautiful, a little erotic and then completely overwhelming. Much like present Anne feels with both David and this spiritual interlude (for lack of better term) with Gilbert. I am so blown away with your descriptions and how vivid they make this story for me. I am happy that we will have another chapter soon!
| elizasky chapter 9 . 8/20
I do indeed remember this fic! I don’t want to miss things, so I will go scene by scene.
Melissa: Oh, Mel. Your dating life is a tale both tragic and common, of “ever-lowering expectations.” I am lol-sobbing at boys who take off their socks and think they are absolutely killing this whole dating thing. Love the echoes of Faith here, with Rob’s “frustratingly gentlemanly” behavior and that dratted three-button rule. You’re wearing a T-shirt, Bobby-boy — it doesn’t apply! “Let lips do what hands do” was a lovely joke and Rob’s “warm, pleased smile” a fittingly lovely reward. Though, also, come on, Rob, not quite 100% a joke there – get on that.
They get into a nice little scrape with the heating issue (very canon-appropriate). My favorite bit here was about all the shaving and plucking and matching undies. Have you no idea what sort of preparation went into this, Rob?
Have I said before how much I like that these two aren’t virgins? Obviously there are some constraints in this fandom, but they often end up working so that the first-time sex scenes are two virgins who are either preternaturally competent or comically/tragically incompetent. For once it’s nice to read about a couple who know a bit better what they’re doing, but are still feeling out a new relationship. This goes for the later Rob and Tessa, too, but I will keep more comment on that for my other review.
Rilla’s diary! I love reading old girls’ diaries, but my own from that age are excruciating. I was a diary keeper – my first is from age 6 and then (with some lapses) through my sophomore year of college. I definitely understand why people burn that stuff. It’s nice to see Anne seeing Rilla in all her facets, inspiring as well as frustrating. It really is a treasure to have those descriptions to add color to the bare facts of the family tree. Anne’s realization of the inadequacy of the poppy was really felt here.
I am so curious about Grandad Tom. I know he’s back in Toronto, but I’d like to meet him sometime. He’s poised between the generations in a way that makes me curious about him. I know we’ll see more of Auntie Cordelia (and her house) and I. CANNOT. WAIT.
The superfluous/essential conversation is excellent and you use it to good effect here and later. There’s also the echoing fire imagery – all-consuming when Anne is with David, flickering candle-flame when she is communing with Gilbert later. David is definitely intense and bright (not to mention hot). And yes, I will watch Possession as soon as I am done with this pile of WWII movies (who knew that Matthew Macfadyen was in Enigma?).
Look Tessa’s not wrong about those MCATs. That’s how I know I’m old now, because I side with the parents in these conflicts. And she also makes a good choice in dis-inviting Rob – it would have been unjust.
Many touch-backs to “Realism and Romance” throughout, as with Tessa in this scene. It makes me nervous for her reaction to Anne’s past-life encounters when those are inevitably revealed – Having Tessa on the side of Realism makes me fear for Anne. She will need an ally.
Oh, Anne. Frowning at the “tauntingly picturesque sky.” I know you have a lot of Romeo and Juliet echoes in this story with the timeline and all, but this scene reminded me of R&J and the first time I re-read it as an adult and caught the detail that if Romeo just chills in exile for ONE MONTH everything will be ok and they just cannot handle it. Scratch my earlier comment – perhaps that’s the moment when I got old.
How lovely to get some back story on clever Tessa. I like that she defined herself as a collaborator and innovator, rather than as a ventriloquist dummy for Alex. Is past-lives magic a ford family trait? Was Alex just playing with literary themes there or did he have experiences similar to Anne’s?
“ . . . not quite as polite as they had been . . .”
Anne starts to get some clues here, doubting she is Rilla. The EVIDENCE just doesn’t stack up. See, she can explain to everyone that she has perfectly rational reasons for her experiences. But the evidence itself is all affinity and dare I say THRILLS – the lake with its “waters shining,” The instant thrill of Green Gables. Definitely hard to explain, especially since everyone hates Alex and that play so much. Might it be something she could take up with Grandad Tom, who knew Alex well but is maybe not quite as reluctant to talk about him as Tessa is?
The Keiths! The Historical Society! Sorry, this is not the most put-together review, but stupid FanFiction dot net was down for like three hours here after I worked all day and then did a 4.5-hour volunteer shift and now it’s one in the morning and I am determined to finish this before I go to sleep. Keiths! Marrying Wrights! The characters don’t have any idea, but it’s all fun little nods to us. Lots of imperfect information here.
“I can work with that” is probably the dirtiest thing you’ve snuck into the T side of this. Perhaps Anne has a better idea now after her encounter with . . . her ancestor (and David’s!). It is very sweet that she calls him Gerald. Get to Auntie Cordelia you kids, and soon David will WANT to be called Gerald. But that text message exchange also shows that Anne really is “young” in some ways as per Tessa’s description. Old enough to make her own decisions and to sleep with David if she wants to, but still not seeing the full picture intimacy-wise. Oh well, have to start somewhere. But I’m very glad to be reading a story in which the parent generation is having the hottest sex.
Last to Anne’s dream/conjuring. This is all very dreamy and fragmented and quite lovely. What a nice glimpse of intimacy between (original) Anne and Gilbert, even if it does freak (wee) Anne out. She’s “awakening,” though, and I’m interested to see what she finds with her eyes open.
Alas, mine own eyes are drooping, so I will save the Beating Heart review for tomorrow.
| Excel Aunt chapter 9 . 8/20
Mel doesn't seem to have a frozen heart. Rather, I would argue that her heart flows freely with love and kindness to those around her, she is, a natural nurse after all. That's not to say she hasn't built her own mental barriers to keep her love hedged in, so it doesn't all bleed out. The poor choices in boyfriends in the past is the hallmark example, her skepticism that romance can be wonderful is the other example, Both examples are reinforced with her outwardly disdain for custom and gentlemanliness on Rob's part. But, it makes her see that Rob does not mean to take her love, but her more and more.
On a side note, I hope we head into Charlottetown at some point and meet up with Uncle Jerry, Auntie Nan, and the very intriguing Aunt Cordelia.
I think Anne's protesting to going to Avonlea without David is a good little reminder of how very young she is. Poor Tessa though, trying to parent by word of mouth and not necessarily by example. David had mentioned that he was needed around his Dad for about two minutes once Tessa and Anne showed up. The young adults think Tessa and Rob are obvious, but, the parents are also noticing how it is with Anne and David. I probably need to go back and refresh myself on the connections Anne and David had made to the past. Anne's little musing on whether or not Carl replied to Shirley's letter had me wondering if that visit we took to Carl and Shirley and the gray house with the pear trees was told in some form to Anne. Perhaps not, because Anne seems to not know what happened after that letter, but, I'll go back and look.
So oft to Avonlea they go. You know, it's a good thing David didn't join in on this escapade. Because that would be a detrimental distraction to the goal of studying for the MCAT. What, with Anne and Gilbert reborn in the vessels of their descendants. Then, I would expect that Anne Ford would never truly know Avonlea without David being there either, so, here's hoping for some other interlude coming.
The second side note is I'm very excited that the Wrights and the Keiths are still in the area. Amanda is one of Davy's and Millie's offshoots with Amanda being Diana and Fred's. I'll bet we'll find that there are complicated family trees in Avonlea too, they were already a bit muddled even in Anne's heyday there.
| Anne O' the Island chapter 9 . 8/20
Heavens, that was delightful! I had a good chuckle over Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, having a pretty good idea of where that one was going.
And the Keiths! They make an appearance! Things click into place now, because I was actually wondering what had happened to them.
You know, I still haven't been able to find the original three-button reference. And frankly, it's becoming maddening. Now that I know the story it belongs to, I suppose I can go back through it with a fine toothed comb...and finally figure out the root of what seems to have become the AoGG section's favorite inside joke.
And would I be correct in assuming that the modern Anne is not, in fact, a reincarnation (of sorts) of Rilla, but of Anne?
I'll leave you to sort through what is a rather disjointed review, and only say that I'm very much looking forward to the next chapter...and Somewhere in Time :)
| seidh chapter 8 . 7/27
I will come back with a longer reply when there is time and when my heart floats back to me. Until then, this: beautiful.
| Guest chapter 8 . 7/15
Excellent writing! I love the echoes of past lives and loves carrying through to the present!
| NovemberRainbow chapter 8 . 6/12
I love this chapter (i.e. the whole story)! And that it's incredibly long. I'm hoping you'll make the next one even longer ;D
I don't really know where to start so forgive me if I ramble a bit. The title of the ch. is beautiful and so fitting because it's a truth universally acknowledged ;)
Rob's interlude, giving a great peak in Shirley and Carl's history, intertwining with Elizasky's, was super. My imagination running loose there for a while! Had to concentrate a bit with all the interconnections.
Rob inherited the Blythe trait of being loyal to his family. Trying to hide his feelings for Mel, who's happy go lucky and who knows how to play him, for she is perfectly aware how he feels for her. She reminded me of Faith, fearless and funny, it must certainly be in her genes. And in Mike as well, the cheeky bugger.
The akwardness and the flirting of Tessa and Rob and the interruption by their kids got me smiling.
I felt the same astonishment as Anne and David that Rob knew all about what they had discovered. And understand the sadness why he never opened the Whitman again. As with David initially refusing the house, because then his mom's passing would feel final. Anne was on a roll here, finally giving in to her feelings and not afraid to show it too. I'd like to know more about her relationship with her dad, as she does have less memories with him than David has with his mom.
The ending was hopeful, the start of new beginnings. Hopefully for Rob and Tessa and Anne and David they will be more than just a summer fling...
| oz diva chapter 7 . 6/9
How cool to meet elderly Carl and Shirley finally able to be together without pretence at last. After all their angst in Eliza's story, it's wonderful that they pull through here and can happily live together free from judgement. Although there is still some astonishment apparently. Is there a wonderful family photo circa 1895 with Marilla and John and all the grandchildren? I would pay to see that.
One day I really will need to give this a close reading from start to finish, because I admit I'm a bit lost with all the intergenerational relationships. Then I might be better equipped to properly review.
| NotMrsRachelLynde chapter 8 . 6/5
I love long chapters so was quite pleased to have a nice long chapter to read this weekend. This certainly covered a lot of territory. I was happy to Shirley and Carl as old but still together. While the 80’s were better for gay couples than 1919, it still was a hard time then as well. They really did persevere in their relationship. The second half of this chapter was a beautiful love song to Mel. I love how the two men in her life still strongly feel her presence with them and now struggle with letting go and moving on. David’s is a stubborn determination to fright it and Rob’s an overwhelming sadness and emptiness at the loss. Both exemplified Gilbert in canon as well. Fortunately both David and Rob do seem to be trying to move on but they love they both feel for Mel is so exquisitely beautiful. Thank you for this update. I am excited to see how these two relationships progress!
| kslchen chapter 8 . 6/4
There's absolutely no way I will be able to remember all the thoughts I had when reading this to put them in this review, so forgive me if I don't even try. I'll try to get some of those thoughts in here though, alright?
It's lovely to hear that Shirley and Carl are alive and well (reasonably so) and *together* well into the 1980s. Reading about their struggles in Eliza's story, I am glad they made it to a time when their love, while sadly not yet accepted, didn't need to be a tightly-guarded secret anymore either. Also, that Shirley got to move out of that depressing condo at some point and that they could live their lives together as a couple ought to be able to do.
I enjoyed all theses glimpses at various family member you gave us (I am just as nerdy as Rob about these things), but I also enjoyed reading about the dynamic of Rob, Melissa and Michael as well. Rob's clearly already "dead gone" on Melissa, but other than that, there's a deep friendship apparent here as well as an easy familiarity, that are both lovely to read. I am also back to liking Melissa after last chapter, so that's a good thing as well.
Moving on to the present day, I had to laugh at Rob and Tessa doing their flirting thing, only to be interrupted rather rudely by their children. Also, at how excited David and Anne are at their discovery, only for Rob to have been "in the know" all this time. They could have figured this out a lot sooner if they'd just asked. But alas, when do kids ever do that?
In any case, this turned out to be quite the emotional rollercoaster for David. I can understand him, that's a lot to process, having the memories of his mum's death sprung at him out of the blue and learning he will inherit a whole house, that's quite something. I can see why he had to run away at first. It was brave of Anne to follow, seeing as how little they know each other yet, but it was a great thing to do, no least because they certainly know each other a lot better *now*, after having had that talk. There was a honesty and an openness about it that they hadn't reached before and I think it brought them a couple of steps forward, both in knowing the other's history and also in knowing each other as persons.
Rob's thoughts at the end were touching and beautifully rendered, so much so that I shall not pick them apart in this review. Let me just say that it was a piece of great writing.
| Alinyaalethia chapter 8 . 6/4
I continue to enjoy the way you slip us through time. There’s much here to like, from the amassed bookshelf at the Lowbridge house, so sparse over in Happiness, to the photos and that genuine connection between Carl and Melissa. The intergenerational Manse is lovely to picture -especially on the heels of the desolate afterthought of a place I appear to be writing about. As ever your characters spring off the page in their completeness; Mike is suitably irritating and Rob conflicted, James just the right degree of removed from the young people, while Carl still thrives on community.
The present day is no less lovely. Rob gently undercutting the discovery of the hour is delightful. But then we soup into the revelation of Melissa and the Whitman, and thst is equally poignant. You say a lot with a little, long before we get to the inscription.I like to think Carl kept on at dancing. Though what an inheritance! No wonder David bailie a little here, it’s a hard thing to swallow. What he says about the inheritance solidifying his loss is especially wrenching, and yet so very true to life. It moves his mother into story and narrative, and makes her more removed than ever. And Anne is wise well beyond 17 in the way she wrangles him, but then no wonder. There’s more than a small dose of another Anne in her, and she too was an astute observer.