Reviews for Second Choices, Second Chances
Meganalira chapter 6 . 1/29/2006
Aw... you know I'm dying from the suspense... are you done yet with a new chapter! please? :)
Jason chapter 6 . 1/21/2006
Another nice chapter. I liked the little sarcastic comment about how both Merena and Anomen were being "exasperately slow in coming to that conclusion" about their love. It just flowed well. That aside, I also enjoy this story for the fact that it takes place after the game, thus you can make the story more your own(which few can do that giving the actual game in a fanfiction; Kendris comes to mind).

I can't wait for the next chapter. See things heat up and all that. And to see Kelsey as the jerk that I just have trouble believing him to be. Good job.
Reklar chapter 6 . 1/20/2006
Whe! Another chapter, and the plot thickens even more!Not that I had any doubt of what was bound to happen, mind you, but it's still nice to read it in your own, eloquently penned, words, Finduilas. ;) I'm beginning to wonder if Arthia and Emond have some sort of bet going on about who can get the pair together the quickest though, considering their similar efforts. It certainly would make for an amusing (Matchmaker style) sub-plot! :D I can't wait to read the next chapter!

-Reklar
Finduilas88 chapter 5 . 1/20/2006
Reklar: I'm glad you like this chapter so much and found it so 'meaty', can't say all that was intentional, but if it works, I'll take it. You're right though, we'll see more of Merena's character in chapters to come, warts and all.

Noneko: Thanks! I completely agree about Anomen in the game, it was a real source of irritation to me that they never really let LG Anomen mature as much as I thought they should, and don't get me started on CN Anomen! Ugh.

Cori: Yes, I always loved the "what happens next" part too. And I've found in BG fanfiction writing that setting it after the game story gives you more flexibility since you don't have to plod from one game event to the other. I'm very glad you liked my Anomen too-I've always thought that if could give him a sense of humor and a little self-confidence, he'd be a great guy!

Amousca: I'm not really a Kelsey hater either, my other story here has Kelsey in it as quite a nice guy. But this setup is ideal for me because it gives me an excuse to have Anomen 'get the girl' but, hey, making Kelsey a jerk wasn't *my* idea!

Glad you like Arthia...don't worry, she *will* have more to say before the story's over. Another secondary character will be getting the spotlight in the next chapter-I hope you like him too. Lastly, (though I'm almost afraid to say this in case I jinx it) I *should* be able to keep posting chapters at the current rate because I have most of the story written already.

Jason: Thanks so much, I'm glad to hear that at least one non-romance reader is enjoying my story anyway! And thanks for the compliment on Anomen's dialogue. I seem to have a much better 'ear' for his speaking style than most of the other characters. I have no idea why-*I* certainly don't talk like that!
Jason chapter 5 . 1/20/2006
I'm not much for romance, but again, another good chapter. While not a long chapter, it is also a much needed chapter for the romance, and you are moving the story forward, so nothing to complain about there. And you're not doing anything wrong with Anomen's dialogue. It's spot on, if you will, without him sounding insufferably annoying.

Have a "good job" from me. It's good for the heart!
Meganalira chapter 5 . 1/15/2006
I'm not an Anomen-hater, but I'm not a Kelsey-hater either... so really looking forward to see how Kelsey turned into a jerk...! Because he obviously is if a good woman like Merena is so angry at him :)

Now, on a bit more technical point of view. I like your story; the fact that you are writing short chapters and update quick make your story come together easily as a whole, which is good. But there's a risk that the story will lose "consistence" if you post your chapters less often, because there is actually little in each chapter.

Liked Arthia very much too :) Liked how you portrayed Anomen maturing on his own - somehow managing to become self-assured without anyone to tell him to? Amazing! Your Merena is also quite good; although it had to be expected (Merena and Anomen being the two main characters, and this story not being one of adventures...), you make the transition from "old friend" to "more" quite smooth in your last chapter.

So, basically, what I'm complaining of mainly is that I'm waiting for the next chapter ;-)
Cori chapter 5 . 1/13/2006
What an excellent story! I like that you set it afterwards, it's always interesting to see what people imagine happened after the final battle. Anyway I am really enjoying this and look forward to more updates. I think you've improved Anomen's character greatly and your take on their relationship is very engaging. The worst thing will be having to wait for the next chapter!
noneko chapter 5 . 1/12/2006
I've been lurking around this story for a while, and I must say that I've been enjoying it very much. :) I especially enjoy the maturity and character growth you've given Anomen... the poor boy didn't get nearly as much in the game that he should have.

Happy writing! I'll be watching! :)
Reklar chapter 5 . 1/12/2006
No, the wait wasn't too long, but don't think that means I actually WANT to wait longer. ;) As for editing, I am always happy to help, but I sometimes doubt my usefulness as I am by far the inferior writer between us.

You're already aware what I think of this chapter, but having read it again a couple other points have become obvious to me. First and foremost, there is a lot of emotional power and meaning in this chapter, both obvious and subtle, which is something I noticed before but didn't connect to the length of the chapter. It was necessary that this not include anything extra, because it would have only served to dilute the importance of Merena's revelation. This leads me to conclude that you have a keen eye for both scene structure and plot development, neither of which are as common one might think.

The second thing I noticed was how much Merena develops, as this is really the first instance that any outside influence has made a noticeable change in her as a person. The previous chapters are mostly about the development of Anomen, giving the reader obvious and subtle clues about both his future relationship with Merena and how the plot is likely to unfold due to his involvement. This makes for an excellent read because it elegantly displays Anomen's intelligence and moral character as each interaction with Merena is explored. I look forward to the same treatment for Merena in the forthcoming chapters.

Amazing how much one can derive from so few words when they actually sit down and think about it, isn't it?

Okay, enough sensible chatter out of me. Get back to work now, Finduilas. :D

-Reklar

P.S. To anyone else who reads this, should I happen to mysteriously disappear it's because I pestered Finduilas too much and she sic'd Anomen on me. ;)
Finduilas88 chapter 4 . 1/12/2006
Reklar: I hope the wait wasn't too difficult! I swear I wasn't trying to be mysterious in this chapter as much as suggestive. Things will become clearer soon, though, I promise!

As always, thanks for the edits...it really does help to have another eye on your writing!

Jason: Thanks. I do try to make Merena's dialog a little more 'modern' sounding, especially in contrast to Anomen's very formal speech patterns. I find Anomen's dialog very easy, believe it or not, it's actually harder to find the right balance of colloquial/formal dialog for the other characters. Let me know I get a little too informal with non-Anomen dialog, okay?

Kendris: Thank you very much! I do love writing dialog, and it comes easiest to me, but I'm trying to stretch a bit in this story and get these guys out of the house! So you can expect a little more traditional action in this story than in JALK. (Still plenty of romance though, have no fear!)

Thanks for commenting!
Kendris chapter 4 . 1/7/2006
You have a real talent for writing highly engaging dialogue!

Very little action (of the sword-and-sorcery kind, anyway... ;-P) occurs in your stories, but the character interaction and internal reflections are realistic and well paced, making for compelling reading.

The dream in which Anomen recieved the Hand was a lovely detail, and his initial certainty that it must have been a mistake...so cute!

He has definitely matured nicely! Prime husband material, Merena (hint, hint!).
Jason chapter 4 . 1/6/2006
I loved it. Again, very natural dialogue, that while a bit modernized in some places, it also fits the characters very well in their personalities.
Reklar chapter 4 . 1/5/2006
Argh! Make it stop already! Hurry and post the next chapter before my head implodes from waiting! Finduilas, your cliffhangers are even worse than Kendris', and that's saying something. If I didn't know better I'd swear you have a sadistic streak somewhere hidden behind all that kindness. ;)

I love this chapter more than all the others combined I think, which is no mean feat considering how much fun it was for me to read Arthia's little spotlight. (Heh, "waste of good husband material," still cracks me up and I'd have payed big time to have seen the look on Anomen's face if he'd heard her say it.) Ironically, I had to read it twice before I caught a couple of the more subtle cues, particularly at the end. It was torture, I assure you. :P I can see your trademark romantic setup in the making and, even though the suspense is killing me, I'm enjoying every word of it.

I have more nitpicking this time, probably because I felt a need to compensate for the raving praise, but more likely it's because I'm just a mean old goat. Please, please, spell out the number twenty so I can stop twitching. I know I'm becoming an insufferable jerk about this, but I can't help it. The only other things I noticed were the following:

"...for the only prompt he need was a raised eyebrow from Merena to get him talking."

I would rearrange the wording to:

"...for the only prompt he needed to get him talking was a raised eyebrow from Merena."

Also, you need to remove the duplicate "or not" at the end of the second sentence in the third to last paragraph of the chapter. This is something I'm very familiar with since I suffer from the same malady, so I can't fault you for it, just let you know if you miss it.

That's really all I noticed, but I admit I got a little carried away while reading because I was too excited to see what happened next. I can reread it a few more times and look for more nits to pick if you like. ;)

Now, back to work! I must read another chapter soon or I'm sure I'll suffer from some horribly disfiguring ailment, and I doubt you want that on your conscience, right?

:D :D :D

-Reklar
Finduilas88 chapter 3 . 1/5/2006
Reklar: Fixed the number problem. I do know better, just forgot to correct it before posting.

We'll find out about Anomen's reasoning soon...and a number of other things that Merena (and hopefully the readers!) have been wondering about.

Kendris: Yes, our boy has changed quite a bit, hasn't he? The question, of course, is how much he has changed.

Jason: Thanks for reading...the next chapter will be up soon!
Reklar chapter 3 . 1/4/2006
Only one nitpick this time Finduilas, but it's one of my pet peeves so I couldn't let it pass; don't use numbers in prose, spell the word out! I know it's a horrible thing to notice amongst such a wonderful chapter, but as I said it's a particular dislike of mine because it reminds me too much of 'leet doods' trying to write fanfiction. (shudder) I would never have mentioned it otherwise, I assure you.

I like the prickly situation you've put Anomen in, and doubly like Merena's response to his ommission, bad assumption though it may be. It's nice to know that Merena isn't all knowing when it comes to Anomen's motivations. ;) That being said, I'm sure you can predict my next few words...can't wait for the next chapter!

-Reklar
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