Reviews for Welcome to the Underworld
kory chapter 1 . 5/4/2005
PadmeSkywalker chapter 1 . 12/21/2003
okay, loved it and please don't think i'm weird for reading a lot of your stories...i just haven't read a lot of good ones in a while!
Janice Queen of Verbosity chapter 1 . 12/1/2003
Now, my love, the completion of my ever-so-loving nitpicks (of an ever-so-fabulous story, which gets better with re-reads, by the way):
/She eyed the pack before her once again, some had lost interest in her.../ That whole sentence is an amazing evocation of the scene, but a bit long; it needs breaking up here and there. The comma between "once again" and "some had lost" ought to be a semicolon, for instance; and the remainder of the sentence needs a comma or two for greater flow.
/enthralled most of the room, her natural air/ again, period or semi-colon between "room" and "her"
And in case I didn't say it before, /her natural air of enchantment had been tossed like a satin sheet from wall to wall/ is one of the MOST brilliant sentences I have read ANYWHERE. ANYWHERE, my dear. It's one of the best descriptions of Satine I've ever read and it's just so-it makes me want to break my pencil in shame; why didn't I write that? Oh, you're one for the ages, Lecky dear.
Back to the nitpicks: /wall to wall, and she was beginning/ again, we've got a very long sentence going here (since the beginning of the paragraph); I'd suggest a period after /wall to wall/ as the next section introduces a new idea (/she was beginning to find no amusement/)
/Her natural enchantment would be nutured and crushed; her tainted innocence will be poisoned by the darkness/. the whole paragraph is brilliant, because it is extremely evocative; you describe her inner self as if it were a tangible physical thing and that gives it a great deal of power and grace here. HOWEVER (ahem) there is a tense shift within the sentence "would" and "will". The last two sentences are, again, bloody brilliant (forgive the swearing-I'm told "bloody" is bad word). Need to capitalize "the" in /the star/-is it possible to nitpick something to death, esh.
That whole end section, really: When I read /One of the Dogs shifted.../ I just sat back and thought, WOW. This chick really is scary; no wonder Satine works so desparately to claw her way out. YOu really paint a picture of the rot and decay beneath the surface allure, in a way that is much deeper and more real than Baz was willing or able to.
And again, I love Satine, so I am very very picky as there are few good Satine fics out there-I hope you are proud of this, my lovely!
/her tainted innocence
Rosemarie-ouhisama chapter 1 . 11/25/2003
Lecky dear, I promised you a beta read (after the fact!) and here it is.

Before we begin-I did tell you how amazing this story is, how I love it, oui? Oui.

Two general thoughts/questions. Who does the poetry belong to/who is speaking or thinking it, Satine or the (omnipotent) narrator. There is a shift in tone and tense in the poetry that startled me at first and I thought was a mistake until I read more carefully (dunce that I am). I found myself wishing that the poetry/lyrics had been italicized or in some way distinguished from the body of the prose. (Which may be exactly what you do NOT want.)

The details here are incredible: tossed like a satin sheet from wall to wall, sucking sounds of lips on the bottle, a spring in her step, a seduction in her voice and a secret in her eyes (oh, that just PERFECTLY sums up Satine!). These will stick with me for a long long time. What I would like to have seen was a sense of place-where in the heck are these people? A room? Where? What is it like? Outside? Are they around a bonfire or a fireplace, etc. the mood is all there in spades, my dear; I just want to know more about the setting.

/People were just, helplessly drawn to...There was just something about her./ Love it, but I'd suggest deleting the first "just" and the comma behind it; it's redundant w/just something about her, and I think the sentence is stronger w/out it.

/a funny feeling crept its way into her body/ Vague. I wonder what this feeling feels like (a shiver, a buzz, a tingle, what part of the body she first notices it (skin, lips, stomach, brain) and what it's trajectory through her body is.

/...and fingers itched to touch her skin, her milky transparent skin, to see if it would crumble./ WOW. Just WOW. that's all I can say to that.

/Her cobalt eyes looked the picture of a child.../ confusion of meaning of "looked" here, which confused the intent of the sentence: that her eyes made her look like a child to others, or she literally saw w/a sense of wonderment as though a child?

/the fire burning eerily/ again, because there's been no sense of place established, the sudden introduction of "the fire" is jarring (where are we? what kind of fire, a bonfire or in a fireplace?) Also, "burning" is a sudden change of tense from rest of paragraph.

/...entertained her ears, fuelled with diamonds and jewels it burnt white hot against her skin./ The sentence in its' entirety is a lenghty one; perhaps break it btwn ears and fuelled, and replace the comma there with a period. Also, what is "it" behind "jewels" in the above sentence? Which "it" you are intending is not clear to me.

/She came to one conclusion as she looked about the pack that sat around her./ this seems like an observation rather than a conclusion. the whole section of that sentence after "sat around her;" is quite long and could stand to be broken at least once.

/Making them seem/ making is a change in tense from rest of paragraph (as opposed to "which made them", for instance).

/As for their own desires;/ comma here, not semicolon.

there are a couple more nitpicks to make, but I must fly, love, my girlfriend is knocking on the window-pane. More to come soon...
Black Tangled Heart chapter 1 . 11/24/2003
Oh, how bitterly beautiful! Your images really paint a picture in my mind, dearest. Echoing Cinna, you have a gift.
Hindi Sad Diamonds chapter 1 . 11/22/2003
There's nothing as appealing as tainted innocence, crushed and contained between greedy palms. Darkness hungers for it, it reaches out a tawny claw and snatches it up in an instant.

Wow. You have a gift, you know. Those lines introduced this fiction wonderfully . . . What an amazing writer you are. Wow.

The scent of makeup and perfume weaved and meandered through her head, like a thick and sweet wine dancing beneath a waxing moon. The fire burning eerily crackled out a hoarse love song that teased and entertained her ears, fuelled with diamonds and jewels it burnt white hot against her skin.

I love those lines. How do you write so well? You're quite amazing! This is really, really wonderful. Please, keep up the good work- don't stop writing!

Again, this is just amazing. Wow. You really do have the writers gift, m'dear. :-)
Janice chapter 1 . 11/20/2003
That was no writer's block, love; that was the downtime your mind/soul needed to gather new material, to listen to the voices in your ear. (Paradoxically, if we were always writing, every single day, without those spaces, we'd be writing but not saying anything.)

And now to your magnificent story. And I do mean magnificent. Satine really did speak to you, my love, and that's a rare gift (swinging from the ceiling, was she? I wish she'd do that for me! *yum*). This story-I barely have words for it.

Norah once commented that sometimes writers reach a new level with their work, and you've done it here. The is a gorgeousness of description that sets a just-right tone, like a whore who slips a clean silk chemise over a body that's gone unwashed for over a week.

I think few people (if any) on this site love Satine as much as I do (everyone's got their favorite, Nini, Christian, etc.) I truly LOVE this story. So true to Satine at that point in her life, so true to the woman we encounter in the film. And yet this a very original and poetic work, that I think would stand on it's own without the film-in other words, someone who hasn't seen the movie could come to this cold and feel the emotions and understand the situation.

Amazing, excellent.

Hmm, since I've gone on long enough, I'll write a separate review for grammar/punctuation comments, ok? (The story could have used a quick beta-read, but as you know, you can always repost, which I myself avoid if at all possible.)

I hope you are proud of this. I'm proud of you, dear.

Your poetry is lovely, truly-Christian can't hold a candle to it! The word choices throughout are stunning-"it reaches out with a tawny claw"; "fingers itched to touch see if it would crumble" are just two standout examples. I say you use words to weave and layer a scene while simultaneously revealing emotional and psychological states-and that truly is a feat, m'love. (I would love to see if are able to go back even further, if Satine speaks to you of her time before the Moulin. She's very secretive about that with all of us, isn't she?)

/Her natural air of enchantment had been tossed like a satin sheet from wall to wall.../ Oh my goddess, Lecky, that is so * brilliant. I DO wish I'd thought of that! (Actually, I wish I'd writen the whole damn piece!) And it is so true to Satine. Sums up so much about her life-how she's had to put on these personas to protect hersel-in a truly original and poetic way.