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Old 10-23-2011, 06:03 PM   #1
Styx0444
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A Study in Magic by Vixit - T

Title: A Study in Magic
Author: Vixit
Rating: T
Genre: Drama/Adventure
Chapters: 20
Words: 45,805
Updated: March 15, 2012
Published: April 28, 2011
Status: Complete

Library Category: The Alternates (Crossover: Harry Potter/Sherlock Holmes)
Pairings: Unknown, if any
Summary: Harry never went to the Dursleys. Instead, the Boy Who Lived was raised by a high-functioning sociopath named Sherlock Holmes. Does England's greatest detective influence Harry for better? Or for worse? The answer is elementary.
Link: Sauce

It's better then the summary sounds. Seems to have a decent update rate, as the first chapter was posted in April and there are nineteen chapters. Decent length, as well.

There are a great many deviations from canon, many with little or no explanation. Luna Lovegood is in Harry's year, Grindelwald attended Hogwarts, etc. Some cliches, but they all seem to be fairly minor details, and handled well anyway. Other issues include typos and repeated words, I don't think the guy has a beta.

Personalities are handled well, the universes mesh about as well as they could, Harry isn't infallible by any means. It also has some interesting twists, and despite starting off seeming like a canon rehash, several changes make it very interesting and give it a totally different plot.

4/5


Checked by Minion, January 14, 2013
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Old 10-23-2011, 06:43 PM   #2
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I would have liked to give this story a 4/5, but the fact that it blatantly rips off plot elements from MoR (of all things) means I can't in good conscience rate the story at all.
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Old 10-23-2011, 06:47 PM   #3
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Well, I haven't read much of MoR but I am enjoying this fic quite a bit so far. I really like Holmes and Watson.

4/5 so far!
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Old 10-23-2011, 06:52 PM   #4
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Hm, I'm intrigued. Is it Harry Potter in Victorian England (YAY) or Holmes in modern times (NAY)?

Though I'd say for the average FF.net writer, Holmes stories are impossible to write. And, of course, after the great Sherlock Holmes and the Ravenclaw Codex, which was the exception to the rule and really nailed the Holmes atmosphere, the bar is high. I'll take a look at this -- but if it is MoR Mk II, then I'll hate you forever >_>


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rips off plot elements from MoR
.... FFFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU
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Old 10-23-2011, 06:52 PM   #5
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I have one serious and significant and unfixable problem. WHY IS LUNA IN HARRY'S YEAR? There isn't a reason for it. I left probably a little bit too angry a review about that, but hopefully she'll just never be mentioned again. If so, I can rate this story well. Otherwise, it annoys me horribly.
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Old 10-23-2011, 07:13 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by T3t View Post
I would have liked to give this story a 4/5, but the fact that it blatantly rips off plot elements from MoR (of all things) means I can't in good conscience rate the story at all.
Wut? The only thing I saw remotely like MoR is Quirrell being good. Even that's pretty much completely different, because
 
Quirrell isn't possessed by Voldemort, and he's dead in the newest chapter anyway.


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I have one serious and significant and unfixable problem. WHY IS LUNA IN HARRY'S YEAR? There isn't a reason for it. I left probably a little bit too angry a review about that, but hopefully she'll just never be mentioned again. If so, I can rate this story well. Otherwise, it annoys me horribly.
That's why I mentioned it in the first post. The author doesn't bother trying to explain, just saying in an AN a couple chapters later that 'He has a terminal illness and the only cure is more Luna.'
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Old 10-23-2011, 07:33 PM   #7
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There's also
 
the expanded pouch, the sorting hat (?), and a few other minor details
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Old 10-23-2011, 07:44 PM   #8
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Right, because bags of holding were invented by Less Wrong, the idea that students essentially sort themselves could never have been imagined by anyone else, and a bunch of other little details barely worth mentioning. Like that Harry Potter is the main character.

Defiantly a MoR rip-off. What was I thinking?
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Old 10-23-2011, 07:51 PM   #9
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I'm not saying that the entire fic is a rip-off of MoR, just that given the number of similarities it seems likely he "borrowed" some bits.

And as for bags of holding (bags, not trunks), MoR is the first place I'd ever seen one in HP fanfiction. I've run across three in fics that were published after MoR.
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Old 10-23-2011, 08:20 PM   #10
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I'm not saying that the entire fic is a rip-off of MoR, just that given the number of similarities it seems likely he "borrowed" some bits.
If you can think of any similarities aside from competent!Quirrell, the bag of holding, and Harry wondering where things placed in said bag go, please point them out. Especially plot points, since I can't think of anything set up in the same way as MoR, including Quirrell.

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And as for bags of holding (bags, not trunks), MoR is the first place I'd ever seen one in HP fanfiction. I've run across three in fics that were published after MoR.
The moke-skin pouch is canon. Aside from that...

I would assume that there are at least a couple bags of holding elsewhere in the fandom, since it's a fantasy series and fantasy likes bags of holding (hell, didn't Nonjon's Black Comedy mention bags of holding early on?). Even if there aren't, and the author did get that idea from MoR, how exactly is that relevant to the quality of this one? It's handled in a different way, it gets no where near the same amount of use as in MoR, and it's not really a bad idea to begin with.
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Old 10-23-2011, 08:25 PM   #11
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It means that while the author may be a modestly talented writer, he's a hack with no creativity.

Yes, borrowing plot elements from other stories isn't rare. But common courtesy dictates that you at least give credit.
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Old 10-23-2011, 08:42 PM   #12
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It means that while the author may be a modestly talented writer, he's a hack with no creativity.
So absolutely everything should entirely be a product of his own mind? You could easily make the same argument against fanfiction writers in general. It's one small thing that's been mentioned twice, including it's introduction. Even if he did get the idea from MoR, which there really isn't much supporting evidence for, how is it worse then any other of the thousand cliches authors use?

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Yes, borrowing plot elements from other stories isn't rare. But common courtesy dictates that you at least give credit.
Agreed, though I'm extremely curious as to how you define 'plot element'. Thus far, the bag has had about as little influence on the plot as an owl treat in canon. It's not like he set something up like another story did, or he borrowed a plot device from another story.
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Old 10-23-2011, 08:43 PM   #13
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I don't see anyone giving credit to the first person who did the pimp-out-my-magical-trunk routine. :3
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Old 10-23-2011, 09:12 PM   #14
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I don't see anyone giving credit to the first person who did the pimp-out-my-magical-trunk routine. :3
Fuck yeah, Rosswrock!


First one I can remember, at least. I wonder if there are any that came before.
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Old 10-23-2011, 10:09 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by T3t
I'm not saying that the entire fic is a rip-off of MoR, just that given the number of similarities it seems likely he "borrowed" some bits.

And as for bags of holding (bags, not trunks), MoR is the first place I'd ever seen one in HP fanfiction. I've run across three in fics that were published after MoR.
Bags of holding are ubiquitous items in Dungeons and Dragons, the author hardly needed to steal the idea from a fanfic.
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Old 10-23-2011, 11:45 PM   #16
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This fic is very well written. The atmoshpere is great and the characters are engaging. I personally don't think that a lot was ripped off of MOR. And it's not a rehash of canon. At the end of chapter 19 there was a major character death and yet there has been no mention of the philospher's stone.
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Old 10-24-2011, 12:18 AM   #17
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yet there has been no mention of the philospher's stone.
No, there was.

 
Minerva retrieved it from gringotts, then gave it to Dumbledore. It's at Hogwarts. No mention has been made of it since, though.
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Old 10-24-2011, 01:43 AM   #18
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When I first looked at this thread I read Harry Potter/Sherlock Holmes as if it were going to be slash between the two. I am glad that is not the case.

I'm sure in some corner of the internet it exists however.

As for this story, well, not bad. I became an avid Sherlock Holmes fan as a child and, while my interest has waned some, it remains one of my favorites. I started reading the Methods of Rationality (I think that is what MoR stands for in this thread), but I lost interest in it after a few chapters if I recall correctly. I don't remember why I lost interest, but I haven't tried to pick it back up.

The first chapter is told from Watson's perspective in traditional Holmes style -- I liked it. The thing I didn't like much about Chapter 1 was how quickly and easily Holmes agreed to take Harry in. In the end though it's just a chapter to set-up the rest of the story, it doesn't have to be perfect.

Well, I got to Chapter 7, but now I need to get some work done, so I need to go ahead and rate I reckon.

I'd give it a 4.5/5 at present, probably round down to 4 though. So far I haven't lost interest like I did with MoR, but I also haven't gotten to the classes and life at Hogwarts yet -- and I suspect that will make or break the story later.

Edit: I got a snack and kept reading instead. Good, solid story so far. Quirrell seems pretty OC even for not being possessed, yet full of awesome especially near the end of the current material. Holmes/Harry interactions have just enough warmth to imply a strong, caring relationship without ever actually saying it, which is rare. The, uh, changes to canon about what happened the night James and Lily were killed are strange -- not sure I like how Dumbledore is being written here, but it's not overboard, so whatever. I am looking forward to more for sure.
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Old 10-24-2011, 02:41 AM   #19
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This fic is both similar and different from the methods of rationality.
The similarities come from the common way of thinking. If you start using a certain set of logic, there are bound to be some similarities. And it shouldn't be considered stealing to use logic and see where it brings you. The Harry from MoR was rational because he read books and liked Ender's Game and had a father we were shown buying books. This Harry is so, because we are showed how his skills were honed and why.


The stealing mokeskin pouch is an absolute nonsense, the wizarding tradition of fitting more into less can take form in as many ways as one might think of, from boots of holding to the almost-infinite cup of water. And on the other hand you have the bag of holding loookalikes used since Welsh mythology, in tales on Pwyll, Prince of Dyfed, (where Rhiannon gives a small bag to Pwyll in order to trick her unwanted suitor, Gwawl. It holds an entire feast's worth of food and, when he puts both feet into it, a grown man, with enough space to tie the bag closed over his head). (Its second hand knowledge as I haven't read it. I'm sure you could find it in various local fairy tales even.)

On Quirrell, I think MoR will force everyone to think if the idea was stolen if Quirrell stopps stuterring on his fisrt lesson...
Both Quirrells are different in their methods and aims. They both teach different things. Hell, they are different enough. (Its the 19th chapter that makes the most of the difference)


Distancing myself from the MoR issue, I have this to say:
It's quite good. The chapters are not too short (with few exceptions), they pack the necessary things to move on, and there is something, that drags you to move along and wait for more.
The Holmes-ish attitude ant thinking leads to interesting dialogue and observations. The whole experimenting with magic (the beginning and chapter 10, i think) things he and his father did, pave the road for explanations for Harry's strengths.
The latish defense classes are used for establishing Harry's weaknesses, but in my opinion were lacking a bit of spark. I can't grasp what exactly is wrong, so there.
It returns in full strength after chapter 17-18, and the chapter 19 is the most simplistically brilliant chapters I have seen.

I'd give it a five, but there was whole training (and failing) with Quirrell sequence, which didn't float my boat and that makes it into 4.3/5 or something. So that translates into four ;D.

My favorite quotes were (just to share):
Quote:
"That professor, what was he like?"
"You."
and
Quote:
"Sherlock Holmes does not hug."
Nauro.
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Old 10-24-2011, 04:15 AM   #20
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This is a very interesting fic. I think most of the characterizations are done well (although I feel Dumbledore is a bit odd), and the Sherlock Holmes stuff has been well integrated so far. The only real criticism I have is that the plot seems a bit stagnant (Chapter 19 changes things a bit, but not by that much).

The story bears passing similarities to MoR, but at a closer look, it's very different. What Nauro said about this basically sums up the issue.

I might normally rate this a 4/5, but because I like the concept a lot and the writing is of generally good quality, I'm going to bump it up to a 5/5. If the author gives me cause to, I'll lower it, but so far, I like what's happening.

As a side-note, I feel wary ranking it a 5/5 (technically on par with stories like HP&BWL or Awaken Sleeper of Denarian series or what have you), but I like this more than many 4/5 stories, and less than most 5/5 stories. In this case, I've just decided to lean towards the higher score for the reasons already stated.
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