Reviews for In Flanders Fields
13dramaqueen13 chapter 1 . 3/2/2014
This was quite well done, I think you captured his angst really well.
Rachel Smith Cobleigh chapter 1 . 8/6/2013
Shirley Parker chapter 1 . 8/6/2012
I wanted to review this fanfiction for a long time, but I was busy and since I always want to do things right I delayed for a long time, but now I found the right moment to do it. First of all, I really wanted to discuss your title and how perfect it is. I didn't know Mr. Stovens read a poem about the Flanders Field, so you get an A for research and for casting a light into the poem and what the place represented for people in the war (I watched a documentary about it... So emotional). But let's get back to your fanfiction, shall we?

First of all, you can write angst. Don't let anyone else tell you otherwise. But you do realize that angst is actually easier than believable fluffly, right? I know because I write angst, but God help me with fluffly. And it is actually one of the things I admire the most about your writing skills because you do the hardest kind of fanfiction and it comes naturally to you. Another side of your writing as a whole that I adore is your wit, also effortless, and that makes your version of the show also on spot. Your sense of humor is flawless, even if it doesn't come across into this specific work (Except for the line about Violet, well played my Dear).

About the work per se: Your description of the war makes it present, realistic and gives the fanfiction some heartbreaking quality. It's actually hard to translate from the historic reports to something personal like you're doing with Matthew's POV of the war and it is really impressive how you get it right. And your Matthew POV is beautiful, even if it’s not really a surprise because I read your posts (That sounds stalkerish) and I see how much care and love your have for this character and this specific war. I like how you escalate his pain, starting with the physical and reaching to the emotional at the end. The physical is often ignored, but I think it’s important, especially when intertwined with the emotional, so when you do it, you actually make your narrative richer. But the emotional is where you excel at, because it’s a layered situation and you kind of also escalate it: From the dread and loneliness… to her. It has a bit of homesick quality attached to it, but she is Downton/Brightness and solace (If I over think, let me know or just ignore the silly things) and this warms my heart. Something I am exploring on my writing, that you scrap the surface here, is that Mary is also confusion (I like how there is a transition between his sort of lust/love to resentment and it’s even better when everything mixes up and you alternate between both), that was not needed and that shouldn’t have a space in war time, and when you make him expose his thoughts, you actually diffuse a ticking bomb (IMO, the letter is the show’s equivalent of Lavinia) and open to an interesting venue.

Also, how amazing that you explored his feelings so early on. It is a moment not many people explore, when his wounds were still so fresh and he didn’t have the perspective of his situation to shelter from her and everything she represents. Ugh. Beautiful. And one of my favorite parts is when you bring Matthew to the core of Earth (Give me some poetic license on this one) and how you play with his sensations and how it translates into the first letter. Call me crazy, but I bought and eBook about love letter from WWII soldiers and although I think its two different situations, it is kind of helping me (You cannot say I am not keen to research) and it made your letters more touching. Matthew’s heart ache is my heart ache, apparently. Another great moment is the end and how beautiful your words were: “away from his idle fantasies and broken dreams”

Indeed. But this is what makes his arch utterly beautiful.
OrangeShipper chapter 1 . 5/17/2012
Aaaaaaaahhh MATTHEW! And ANGST! You can SO do it! :D :D

(So sorry this has taken me so long by the way! I don't know WHAT'S wrong with me this week!)

Oh, my poor darling. It's so new and awful and difficult. I want to hug him. And I think what struck me the most sharply here was that awful, awful realisation that he COULD die - at any moment - he just has no idea. One minute you're there, the next you're not, and there's nothing he or anyone can do about it. That's just CHILLING. And of course it's hard for him to deal with.

And I ADORE that that then prompts him to take that step, and write to Mary. Agh, "Perhaps I shall see you all at Christmas"... OH, MATTHEW. *sob*

I'm SO thrilled you're continuing. Welcome to the dark pit of angst-mongering, my dear. *hugs*
Willa Dedalus chapter 1 . 5/15/2012
Matthew in the trenches! Yes more please!
smndolphin chapter 1 . 5/15/2012
I would have loved to see something like this on the screen. You do angst as well as you do fluff, meaning you do it spectacularly! Poor Matthew, he had likely never held a gun before in his life, and to be thrown in a situation like a battle, regardless of the training, would be a great deal to bear. And you eloquently showed, war puts so much into perspective and seeing so much death around him would make Matthew take so much into stock, like Mary. There are simply no words for how much I loved the letter he wrote, and if this is canon compliant, clearly never sent. In my own headcannon, he sent the letter, Mary replied reaffirming her love, and there's no Lavinia, no Richard. I read this first thing in the morning when I woke up and between this and listening to Dan read the poem in question, I was a mess. To be surrounded by so much death, of course it would strongly affect his state of mind and you did such a wonderful job of letting us inside Matthew's head.

Absolutely wonderful work and as much as I love your fluffy pieces, I hope we see more stories like this from you. You have an amazing talent and thank you so much for sharing it :).
LoverandaFighter chapter 1 . 5/15/2012
multi-chap AU plotline please? PLEASE. :)
robspace54 chapter 1 . 5/15/2012
Your story conveys very well the dangers, discomfort, and despair of the trenches. The Abbey and home must have seemed like a dream after only two weeks in combat. Matthew, as required, had to have a moustache. I do not think British soldiers had helmets before 1916, wearing cloth caps.

Nice start, though, to the muck and mire of a war.
GhostIsland chapter 1 . 5/15/2012
What really gets me about this fic is the detail - it's like I can see it unfolding before me. :) I can see where Matthew is through your words - you just really capture the atmosphere so well. :D It's such a great idea to think about what Matthew might've been going through in the early days - he seems very new and scared, which I think comes through in his letter to Mary (aww!) I do love hearing how he still thinks about her...sigh. :) What an evocative piece - keep writing! :)
isa94941 chapter 1 . 5/15/2012
Great beginning! hope there is more of it to come ;)
jupisan chapter 1 . 5/15/2012
Hope he mails that letter.
Audrey C chapter 1 . 5/15/2012
What a lovely little story. I enjoyed it immensely!
Chickwriter chapter 1 . 5/15/2012
Aww. Throat actually closed up at the letter... it sounded so like something Matthew would have sent Mary... even though he didn't, UGH. Well done!