|Reviews for Hammered Down|
| your local SIMUVAC chapter 36 . 3/19
I had meant to read through to "Lifted Up" before making a review of this series, but I don't know how long it will be until I have the time to get to that point. Therefore, this will concern only the matter of "Hammered Down."
Let me start by saying you have the most impeccable writing style I've seen on this site. I've found well-written stories before, but for the author to correct the reader's grammar is unprecedented as far as I've seen. Speaking of which, I am typing this on a computer, so if I make yet another error I have absolutely nothing to use as an excuse. In all seriousness, I could find no fault in your writing. Every sentence flows naturally, the diction is fairly varied, and the dialogue is clear and understandable.
The plot of "Hammered Down" also flows neatly, with every detail coming into play. I had initially thought your history of Soul Society to be mere world building, but that lore evolved into an intriguing conflict that had me rereading previous chapters to make sure I got all of the details. I especially enjoyed the experience of trying to piece together the traitors' motivations as more was revealed. And yet, you have managed to do this all without taking the setting too far from canon. In fact, you leave sizable holes in the progression of the story for the events of Bleach. At first I found this unannounced leap to be jarring, but now I find it a clever way of signaling that you are not interfering with canon; you've only added to it.
Part of what makes this story so compelling is how there are no moments where Rukia or Ichigo act out of character. Though I feel you did read a bit far into the shallow canon development of a few, such as Yumichika or Hisagi, that isn't necessarily bad. After all, one could say that the entire purpose of fan fiction is to fill the gaps. For the characters that do already have complex personalities, you write them very believably, if not more realistically. I certainly find it disappointing that Ichigo has yet to rebel against Soul Society in Kubo's series, but here you have him walk a fine line between loyalty and opposition. The villains are also respectable, from Gin's simple but self-centered problem solving to Unohana's grand schemes. I actually wondered for some time if you meant for her to win, at least partly, as such an outcome didn't seem entirely disagreeable.
On balance, "Hammered Down" is one of the best works I've read on this site to this day. The length is intimidating on the outside, but looking back I do not think that you could have fleshed out the story with any less. Nonetheless, it does mean that it will take me some time to get through your other works (and I do intend to do so). Until such a point, I will have to retreat back into my shell. I look forward to reading more by you soon.
| CactusNoir chapter 36 . 2/18
I finished! I loved it! It was funny and actiony and twisty and everything. Thanks for taking the time to write it, it must have taken aaages (and also for taking the time to reply to reviews, I'm impressed and it made me smile.) . I'm also finding the prospect of Byakuya having a cat called Smooshy pretty funny. Happy 2014 Tomas Betrayer; to more Yumi/Ruki indeed.
| CactusNoir chapter 28 . 2/5
Yumichika is the coolest guy in this. He is being very very cool. -
| CactusNoir chapter 27 . 2/4
All those things that were said ages before, like Unohana being really great at mixing drinks, they all seem so much more relevant now. I'm not sure how I'm supposed to feel, but I really hope I'm not a sleeper agent of any sort. Maybe it's late, but I'm getting a little nervous over here.
| CactusNoir chapter 26 . 2/4
What the hell just happened?! Cripes.
| CactusNoir chapter 17 . 2/4
That last bit with the visit to Oriheme's house was hilllarious! I am very much enjoying this read.
| CactusNoir chapter 2 . 2/3
This was adorably the best! I don't usually like smooshy feelings stuff, but I loved the smooshy bits in this, and all of this. This fic looks so massive.
| the hotpocket hunter chapter 36 . 1/29
Horrifyingly brutal, with an extremely satisfying ending. It's like a cross between a murder mystery and one of those psycological thrillers. Real cool work you did here.
| arcangeldjr chapter 36 . 1/13
This story is an absolute masterpiece. Excellent understanding and interpretation of the Bleach world. Amazing characters, fantastic fight scenes, and the actual STORY is incredibly well-written. The best thing I've read on .
| Warrior chapter 36 . 1/9
The sheer amount of times I had to stop and go "Wait what holy fuck that actually happened" is enough to have earned you this review, but you went above and beyond. Romance, betrayal, conflict, loyalty, honor, friendship, and even the basic question of what is truly right were all handled masterfully. But above all? You managed to make me utterly despise a character who I once considered one of my favorites, and in turn, made me appreciate several others who I had previously dismissed as one-dimensional. That is damn good writing. 11/10, off to go read Lifted Up.
| eccentrifuge chapter 36 . 1/8
It's been awhile – but after recommending this fanfic to my brother last month, I couldn't resist rereading it for what must be the fifth time. Luckily, it's only the first week of the quarter, and not too much is going on, so me spending my free time rereading Hammered Down wasn't an issue. I'm trying to resist holding off on re-reading what you've written so far of Lifted Up, because I should actually get work done, hah. You can imagine my excitement when, in the middle of reading Hammered Down, I got an email notification saying you'd uploaded a new chapter of Lifted Up.
I'm still blown away at such an intricate web you woven with the pieces of the Bleach universe. It makes me giggle when I see how you subvert what Tite Kubo created in the canon – the four vasto lorde Espada, the Karakura Town plot twist, and countless others I don't remember off the top of my head because there's just so much going on. And just like the last few times I read this story, I found myself once again a diehard Yumichika/Rukia fangirl, which made it all the more painful when I read the last two heart-wrenching chapters. I suppose the way you've written things, they're more tragic, and (as Yumichika might put it) even tragically beautiful at that. But crikey, that romance-that-could-have-been hurts every time like a sonnuvabitch. That damn Ichigo. Not that Yumichika was perfect – just that he was infinitely more lovable than the substitute shinigami.
I'm curious about the style of the story – were you intentionally going for an epic feel? (And by epic, I mean on the scale of epic poetry, not just any old epic.) I suppose it's pointless to quibble now, but the extravagant epithets you bequeathed upon your characters and descriptions ("violent vixen", "trembling orbs", "delicate maiden") did get corny and cringeworthy after awhile. Not all of them, just most.
It's impossible for me to comment on the entire behemoth of this epic. But I think all I can really do is thank you (yet again) for taking the challenge of creating such a complicated world, with equally interesting characters. It beats the sad state of the Bleach manga today (though why I bother keeping up with it, I'm not sure.)
Anyway, I look forward to reading the rest of Lifted Up as you update as you see fit. Since I plan on entering a monastery in a couple years, it's kind of my hope that I'll be around long enough to see the sequel finished. But if not, since that's how real life works, alas, I guess I'll have to learn to live with the suspense!
| pregar chapter 36 . 11/6/2013
Huh, and I thought there were no good Bleach stories.
Normally I never use that word, but I must say, this story is simply epic. One of the best things I have ever read.
Thank you a lot for writing this.
| AKissAndAGunshot chapter 9 . 10/1/2013
But that's not Shinsõ's bankai 0_0
unless you deliberately decided to change it, I suppose... but, uh, if it's not too much to ask... why did you?
| FinalFlashX chapter 2 . 9/18/2013
I wasn't going to review this story before I finished the whole thing, but this chapter was just so...astounding, that I just had to leave you my thoughts on it. Quite simply, this is probably the best in-depth analysis of Byukuya that I've ever seen. Seriously, I'm not even sure if Kubo himself could have explored how Byukuya came to be who he is in a single chapter like you have here. I was left stunned at times at how well you portrayed the aloof noble. Not a single scene in this chapter was a waste of time, and each one of them had meaningful purpose to showing more and more aspects of Byukuya's character.
I had never thought of Byukuya and Yourichi potentially having a sexual relationship together, since from the show, it looked like Byukuya was like 13 or 14 at the most when she would come around and play "tag" with him. In fact, before I read this, I probably would have argued that anything related to ByukuyaxYourichi as a Crack Pairing. But how you presented it here, absolutely outstanding. The way you showed their relationship made it make sense, made it seem like this is what actually happened in canon, and is one of the reasons why Byukuya was so cold growing up. It was just well done, I know I keep saying that, but just the way you presented their relationship pretty much blew my mind. It was incredibly sad when Byukuya realized that Yourichi had indeed left with Urahara and the other Vizard and his desperation was incredibly well written.
I honestly couldn't think of a better story explaining the Hisana and Byukuya relationship any better than you did here. The way that you said they were brought together because of how Byukuya could feel a kindred spirit in her was beautifully done. How you showed their whole relationship progressing was astounding, and I loved how at every turn you took the opportunity to show that to most people, Byukuya appears like a monster to them, completely devoid of emotion and thought even Hisana was frightened of him when they first met. Very well done.
I thought you're analysis of the Rukia and Byukuya relationship was spot on. The reason why Byukuya could never bear to be around, or even look at Rukia, how he was completely torn apart by her presence because he so desperately wanted someone to share Hisana with, but he was bound by his oath to never tell her about his dead wife. They way you showed all of the small little nuisances and miscommunications between Rukia and Byukuya, and how everytime that Byukuya attempted to comfort or open up to Rukia something unexpected happened and just that one small thing sent a completely different message to Rukia than what was in Byukuya's head was just extremely well done her. It was actually quite amazing to read. I was a little puzzled by a few of the scenes (Byukuya's fight against Espada 7, since that's WAY in the future of where the story currently is at, and I wasn't really sure what was up with the fight against the other Espada, and if that's a difference from the canon universe or what, but those were still great to read), but still this chapter was probably one of the finest bits of characterization that I've ever seen, anywhere, period. Thank you for the incredible reading experience. This is an instant favorite now.
| Guest chapter 36 . 9/3/2013
I thought this was gin/rukia story -.- disappointed.