Reviews for To the Olympics!
Complexly Simple Kiddo chapter 4 . 10/13/2008
In all honesty, I've read a lot of fics about Alexander and Hephaestion, and none of them has managed to really strike me, somehow their characterizations seeming a bit off by some words, or descriptions, or even actions. I've read two of yours now, and I'm so, so delighted. It's like I've finally found that cup of water in the middle of the desert! I absolutely love your characterizations, on both of them, and most importantly, the way you write them! The way you seem to describe what's going on in an indirect way, not merely telling what's going on, but leaving the reader to understand what's going on by the way the characters give a look, or utter some words. It is very hard to find this kind of writing nowadays, since it seems that the more direct narration is being used more often, granted, being much easier to understand for wider audiences, but leaving little to the reader to really think. I'd love to see this one continued, and I'm going to start reading the others now. I'd love to get in touch with you, even through e-mail, because I'm really honest about what I said, I love reading, and I love writing (Even though I'm not really good at the last one), and I'm absolutely happy to find someone writing this way I consider so interesting, in a topic I came to love. Are you still writing? I hope you are, no matter how spacious the updates might be.

Sorry for any mistakes in this review, by the way, english is not my mother language.
Jedi Sapphire chapter 4 . 8/11/2008
I love this - it's brilliant! And don't worry about the conversation between Alexander and Hephaestion; it's just fine.

Please update soon!
moon71 chapter 4 . 7/16/2008
Another excellent chapter - I'm only sorry it's taken me this long to review it!

The Alexander - Hephaestion interraction is great - I could really see them as your boys in "Showtime" grown up and grown closer, and indeed I could see them eventually growing into the men who deal with Alexander's chest wound some years later.

I particularly liked how Hephaestion handled Alexander - he didn't try to tell him he was right or wrong; he just did what a good friend does and listened, and helped Alexander sort his mind out. Alexander had, after all, already admitted he had made a mistake.

The awakening realisation on Hephaestion's part that he's just accidently arranged for Alexander to be seperated from him - and his dismay as a result - was so subtlely handled. If friendship is to turn into something more in this story, you're handling it in a touching and simple way, without melodrama or angst, which, as I KEEP complaining endlessly, I just don't think teenage boys are given to in huge amounts!

But what I appreciated most of all was your handling of Alexander and Philip. You know I like Philip a great deal and hate it when he's portrayed as a monster or a thug. Here Alexander has obviously been trying to impress him but his inexperience lets him down. What caught my attention was the fact that Alexander cannot out think his father - he misses the subtleties of Philip's diplomacy and only later realises what his father intended. This is SO historically Alexander - a few years later he's still making political gaffs at his father's expense. But then again, Alexander is willing to ADMIT that he misunderstood and wants to correct his mistake.

I love the way you have woven in this other "Olympics" quote - perhaps this is where the story in the Romance originates, because (I think...) Alexander does compete against princes and noblemen in the race in the book. (Then again, in this mixed-up medieval story, the chance of a Macedonian / Greek prince competing in the Olympics was too good an idea to pass up! Is the Alexander Romance the first Fan Fiction? What a thought!)

Anyway, I am posting this here because so far as I can see your update isn't posted on LJ, but if it is let me know - there's always cut and paste! I have a new copy of the Romance - the Armenian version which is supposed to be one of the best (I read the Greek version which is the one published in Penguin Classics) and I will try to post a review of it when I've read the Armenian one too!
Norrsken chapter 4 . 6/19/2008
Dear Joyee,

You bring us Alexander's constant family troubles in a vivid manner. He wants to do so very well, coming home after a long time at Mieza, having learned so much. Then Philip focuses om his being "'Nimble and swift of foot", causing him to say the famous – 'Yes, I would run - if I were to have kings as competitors.'"

Their dialog is a bit awquard, I agree, but I don't mind. They are in an awqward position, Alexander doesn't know what to do with the Olympics, but Hephaestion gives sound advise as always.

Looking much forward to where you will be taking this, All the best wishes,

/ NorthernLight
IceSnowAndGlamour chapter 2 . 6/18/2008
Hey, this is a pretty cool story. Continue, and I like how they have a sense of humor instead of being all prissy and stuck up like in some stories. Good work.
unestel chapter 4 . 6/16/2008
Very lovely, though I still not quite understand what Alex was thinking when he agreed to go to the olympics: was he persued by Hep,or had thought of it himself?

The cliffhanger is great,how would Hep react? Please, update soon, now's summer holidays,isn't it?
Rosadina chapter 3 . 6/4/2008
This fic is fun engaging and plotty. I can't wait until you get to the character development since you've set up interesting groundwork. I like the story and am putting you on my author alerts.
Norrsken chapter 3 . 5/23/2008
Great update. I enjoy your Cleocritus' POW. It brings us a good background to the conflict between Macedon and the South, ending up into the treagedies of Chaeronea and later on Thebes.

It is most interesting to *see* Alexander through Cleocritus' eyes. He is very negative to all Macedonians, but the Golden One affects him greatly despite this.

All the best wishes and looking much forward to next part,

/ NorthernLight
Emerauldessence chapter 2 . 5/5/2008
This is a really good story so far. You might want to change the summary though, it's not all that enticing. Update soon!
tronxoe chapter 2 . 4/29/2008
Very lovely! please update soon
Norrsken chapter 2 . 4/27/2008
Another great chapter. I love your ways of bringing us Alexander and his Companions at leisure in Mieza. It's so good reading a story free from angst and violence. You bring nature's beauty into your story in an excellent manner, too. I can almost smell the Lilies from the Nile and see the succulent apricots. You see, I am an ardent gardener, too, so I enjoyed Hephaestion's lovely ride in the orchard. :)

All the best wishes,

/ NorthernLight
moon71 chapter 1 . 4/25/2008
As always it is a joy (pun intended) to find a new story from you.

Let me count the ways...

First of all, with most of the remaining ATG fics around focusing on sex, jealousy and angst and death in no particular order, it is so refreshing to find one that concentrates on the world that Alexander and Hephaestion lived in as well as the "two heroes" themselves. Your gentle and restrained depiction of them as always pulls me two ways - in one sense I would love to see your deeply loving friends "get it on" just because of how charming they are, but on the other, the fact that they don't is actually a nice change and reminds me that one can enjoy a "fanfic" about these two without sex being a topic.

Secondly I love the way you focus with confidence on the "supporting cast" - in this case Aristotle. You show him a far more tollerant and attractive figure than the film (or Renault) produced; he is fascinated in his own scientific way with Alexander and Hephaestion, not coldly disaproving, and obviously fond of all his students. It makes me wonder just what Aristotle made of his former students as they effectively became kings - not just Alexander, but all of his friends. Historians and writers usually seem to focus on Aristotle's dislike of the Persians, but what interests me more is what he would have made of the progress of the Macedonians.

Third, it's just nice to have a story on the Olympics theme. I did start on one myself, for the same challenge, but I did get rather stuck on it (whether to go with the Romance version, or the correct historical order.) I would love to see what you do with this!
Norrsken chapter 1 . 4/9/2008
Dear Joyee,

Soo good to see you back here. Your Olympics story comes just in an appropriate time. I like it a lot, your language is beautiful and fast flowing. You give us vivid descriptions of Aristotle and the Companions, and one feels like partaking of their life at Mieza, Alexander's and Hephaestion's relationship is very new, but already forming into a strong and powerful bond. These lines says it so well:

"There might – there should – be limits to what those two could do, but as yet, Aristotle had not seen any."

All the best wishes for now, and looking much forward to next chapter,

/ NorthernLight
cuncon chapter 1 . 4/9/2008
Very lovely, and at a right time,please update soon!
Kizzykat chapter 1 . 4/7/2008
Nice to see another story from you, and it would also be good to see Coraldawn around again! I think you might find that the audience here has changed and historical stories are less appreciated. A tiny point on the story – if you are going to go on to include the part in the Alexander Romance where Alexander kills a man (I forget his name) at Olympia, it might have been better to bring in more tension and not start with Aristotle being so prominent in the story, but perhaps you’re not going in that direction.

PS I may be wrong but I thought this was in the year before Alexander became regent ie when he was 15.