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WIP Journey Through the Dark by Earl Lonsdale - T

Discussion in 'Almost Recommended' started by bommor, Jul 19, 2010.

  1. bommor

    bommor Squib

    Joined:
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    Title: Journey Through the Dark
    Author: Earl Lonsdale
    Rating: T
    Genre: Fantasy/Drama
    DLP Category: Independent Harry or The Alternates
    Pairing: Harry/Susan
    Status: Work in Progress
    Summary: AU 4th year. Spurned by everyone, Harry accepts Bagman's help, taking the 1st step towards greatness. Elements: charms-prodigy, no-bashing, manipulative but good Dumbledore, dragons, unspeakables, HarrySusan, Ginny-friendship.
    Link: ff.net

    Comments:
    Found this story today, and it was one of the more interesting/well written stories I've read in a while. I didn't see it on DLP, so I figured what the hell, I'll post it and see if its worthy. Its a Political!Harry story, but a lot more subtle than in most cases, which I found to be very refreshing. Its not "Harry memorizes a bunch of laws and takes over the Wizengamot" but more like "Harry's 15...but he can still play with public opinion." Its at 5 chapters, ~50K, and updates pretty regularly. Enjoy!

    - Bommor
     
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2010
  2. Rym

    Rym Auror

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    I could be wrong, but I'm pretty sure the link you posted is for a different fic.
     
  3. bommor

    bommor Squib

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    My bad. It should be fixed now.
    - Bommor
     
  4. Vir

    Vir Centauri Ambassador ~ Prestige ~ DLP Supporter

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    This is in the "Almost recommended thread" and has had good reviews so far. I'm seriously enjoying it.
     
  5. Kthr

    Kthr Unspeakable DLP Supporter

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    I'm following this fic for some time as well. It's refreshing to find a Harry that actually uses his brain. While the first few chapters were a bit lacking, the last update really raised my expectations for the fic.
     
  6. Anarchy

    Anarchy Half-Blood Prince DLP Supporter

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    I have followed this fic since it was first posted here. It's decent, using an ok concept, but there too many annoying parts for a fic only 5 chapters long. 3/5 from me
     
  7. scaryisntit

    scaryisntit Death Eater

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    Stuck in the middle of the pack for me. It's got its enjoyable parts, and its got some bad ones. I'm following it for the time being, but it lacks something to make it good and not just somewhat enjoyable.

    Really liked the conversation Harry and Dumbledore had. Really don't like Harry's attitude at times. Mixed bag, definitely. 3/5 for now. On the edge of something good and something awful.
     
  8. Kensington

    Kensington Denarii Host DLP Supporter

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    This one is hard for me to judge.

    I'm giving this story a lot more leeway than I would otherwise, simply because Harry/Susan is my favorite ship. It's real nice to read a half-competent story with that pairing.

    My biggest issue is the characterization of Harry. Yes, it is nice to see Harry getting a clue earlier than he would in canon, but Harry himself in this story is a mixed bag to read. There are some scenes - especially with the promotion of his book, that I think that Harry is turning into a competent Lockhart. I definitely don't want to read that.

    So far, the two big pluses (for me) in this story is the Harry/Susan banter and the characterization of Dumbledore. Harry comes off, well like a kid when he's just talking to Susan and not trying to play up The Boy Who Lived aspect.

    For now, I'm giving this a 3/5. If Harry stops acting like such an ass (which I'm not sure how vital that is to the plot of the story), I'd probably bump this up to a 4.
     
  9. Manatheron

    Manatheron Headmaster

    Joined:
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    I was a bit surprised to be honest, but I took a real enjoyment in this story.

    IndyHarry with just the right touches of Betrayed and Political. It's good, but I get the feeling that the author doesn't have it in them to add enough gritty reality to make it Epic.

    I suspect There won't be character deaths of anyone we care about, and it included a (thankfully) brief requisite shopping trip and a number of clothing descriptions that I felt broke up... No nothing so strong... Caused the plot to hiccup at points which was a minor but noticeable detraction.

    That combined with some other minor characterization details mean it loses that last little bit needed to push it over the edge.

    A solid four, maybe as much as a four point two, but on the whole a pretty solid four.
     
  10. vlad

    vlad Banned ~ Prestige ~

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    Didn't do anything at all for me. The magic and espionage felt amateurish, the 'romance' forced, the betrayals one-dimensional. I can see the appeal from the like-the-ship/guilty pleasure aspects, but overall this is pretty mediocre at best.

    3/5 because I don't want to tank it more than anything else.
     
  11. Sesc

    Sesc Slytherin at Heart Moderator

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    Ohay.

    Damn high on my shitlist of things: Fucking newbs posting stories in For Review that I was going to post -- in two or three chapters, when enough of it was written, because it was lacking length as of yet, or, more precisely, lengthy enough parts that weren't shit. So fuck you, "bommor".


    That said, if you ignore the first chapter (and the OP), it's a great story. Harry's character especially; using his Boy-Who-Lived-influence is one thing I always wanted to see. Add in a good characterisation of Ginny, a great Dumbledore and Harry/Susan, and it would make for a 5/5, all boni included -- except you have the first chapter, which really blows.

    "Everyone" having turned on Harry, which is neither realistic (since circumstances are the same as in Canon) nor even needed for the plot (it would have worked all the same if it had been only Ron and Hermione, here); crying!Peeves (ridiculous) and sheer laziness on the author's part (mixing up spells -- if I can check the HP-lexicon in all of ten seconds, so can you) makes for one of the worst openings I've come across lately. The story may well make me forget that, but I won't know that until another few chapters.

    It's on the right path, in any case.
     
  12. Howdy

    Howdy Dark Lord

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    I've rather enjoyed the story so far.

    The one thing that continues to irk me a bit is how the Harry/Susan pairing is just thrown in your face over and over again. It's a little much.
     
  13. The Santi

    The Santi Professor

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    I've also been following this since it was put up in the almost recommended thread, and I'm still not sure what I think of it.

    There are a lot of parts that I find enjoyable. The author writes a good Bagman, and I always enjoy actually seeing Harry learn magic. I liked reading a talented Harry compete in the Triwizard, and the author's depiction of Dumbledore is very good.

    However, there are still a lot of problems with this story, and Secs has highlighted a lot of them, but, to me, the biggest issues is the Harry/Susan pairing itself. I just don't like Susan in this story, and the romance isn't depicted well. The last chapter was especially poor in that regard.

    Right now, the entire plot seems to revolve around the Harry/Susan relationship, and that is making the rest of the story suffer IMO. This story might end up in the great idea poor execution thread since I love the idea of Harry getting advice from Bagman for the triwizard, but the moment the Harry/Susan pairing was introduced, the fic began to spiral downwards.

    Additionally, and I can't remember exactly, is this the story where Ginny casts aquamenti as a third year?

    3/5 at the moment.
     
  14. LuckyFelix

    LuckyFelix Seventh Year

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    I think this fic has potential to be good, but it's also in danger of being horrible. Right now I'd probably give it a 3/5 but I think I'll wait a few more chapters before rating it.

    I think the Harry/Susan relationship could be done better and also not as upfront as it is. This is a problem that many fics face when they try to focus on one particular pairing. Ultimately everything revolves around it to the detriment of the rest of the plot. Unfortunate.

    Another thing that annoys me is the incorrect use of some spells and not knowing who should know them and when. Such as Ginny knowing the Aguamenti Charm or Cedric and others not knowing the Flame Freezing Charm, which I would think that they would know by N.E.W.T. level. Although it's never officially mentioned, iirc, when they learn that spell.

    Also concerning the latest chapter, I don't like that the author is seemingly forcing OotP to play out the same way despite the massively different circumstances. The Dementors in Little Whinging, Umbridge at Hogwarts, etc.

    With the changes that had happened from canon things won't necessarily progress the same way. Yet I have a feeling that ultimately they will. We'll see though.
     
  15. Stormey

    Stormey Groundskeeper

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    :(
    I was soooo hoping that Harry will actually use the portkey to bring Voldemort to Hogwarts in front of everyone. Instead he decides to bring Peter. Anyway, the fic was pretty good. Definately can see room for improvement, but fast updates along with decent writing makes me want to see where it goes.
    3.5/5, rounded to 4.
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2010
  16. Nadino

    Nadino Third Year

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    Way to go, dude. If you want to spoil something, ANNOUNCE you are spoiling it.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 21, 2010
  17. ashura

    ashura Third Year DLP Supporter

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    I enjoy the fic's plot developments including semi-competent Harry doing whatever it takes to win the tournament, various political machinations, and the dashing of common sense during the Tasks. But where the fic falls short for me, and what I think will ultimately force me to stop reading it, is the characterization.

    The voices for Harry and Ginny just don't fit at all. That's fine for fics that tag on AU elements to Harry's initial development but this one is continuing right from the middle of the 4th book. And while canon Harry at that stage sorely needed some improvement, that improvement should be steady. This fic reads like the author just plucked canon Harry out and popped random-teenage-boy-in-Harry's-situation in... which leads to Harry delivering cringe inducing lines like "You can ride my broom anytime you want, Miss Weasley", becoming Peeves' best friend and, in the span of one conversation, trading friendly barbs with Draco.

    And the problem with Ginny characterization is the same as it was with JKR, as if the author just said "Hey, Ginny needs a personality! Here's one!" and we got no transition from meek, blushing, hero-worshiping Ginny to a Ginny that confidently acts as Harry's best friend, confidante, therapist, etc. At least JKR had the flimsy excuse of a summer vacation to hide away Ginny's development. Here the author made the drastic change right in the middle of the school year.

    The characterization problem extends to minor characters as well. No one acts/talks as if they have their own motivation or desire. They all revolve around pushing the plot and new Harry/Ginny characterization forward. Even one of the better character moments, Harry's conversation with Dumbledore, feels contrived as a result... which is a shame because I feel like the fic had a very strong start with the Harry-Bagman conversation that actually read like a potential convo between canon Harry and Bagman. For those reasons I have to give this a 2.5 rounded to 3/5 for the board.
     
  18. Remmy

    Remmy Fourth Year

    Joined:
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    I have somewhat similar concerns as the others, but I'm more willing to see how this story moves forward and will err on the side of caution and deliver my judgement then.

    The chapters are of decent size, the plot is fast moving and doesn't appear too rushed, there are several Canon aspects respected in the AU and I like this Harry.

    However I'm finding myself in the same conundrum as stated before, this Harry is very unlike the Harry we know in GoF, in other words, his change is too swift to be believable. He couldn't be the same meek but courageous boy, he's snarky and is trading remarks and comments with Malfoy in a bantering fashion as if they're old school friends and not the enemies they've been for years. It's just a bit too much to take in so fast.

    I hope that the author won't be disappointing in future chapters because I am looking forward to how things turn out in the end.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 21, 2010
  19. Blank402

    Blank402 Second Year

    Joined:
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    Decently written, but there are some things that are really preventing me from enjoying it. Harry seems way too out of character considering the only change from canon so far is the deal made with Bagman. I don't get why both Ron and Hermione have turned against Harry. Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong, but wasn't it only Ron who was mad at Harry in GoF?

    I'll probably give this another shot at some point, but for now it's failed to draw my interest.
     
  20. bommor

    bommor Squib

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    Fuck you, fuck you very much :banana:

    As for the story, the Dumbledore scene where Harry has to choose is what made me recommend it and cinched it for me - it was hilarious.

    "Harry," Dumbledore leaned forward seriously. "Nobody was supposed to enter the third floor where the Philosopher's Stone was being guarded! Nobody! Including you!" There was power laced in his voice, and Harry was inclined to believe him. "The Chamber of Secrets," Dumbledore spat in disgust. "I would never risk a student's life in that manner. I would stand between a basilisk to shield my students with my last breath."

    Harry felt ashamed he could have even thought otherwise.

    Dumbledore relaxed in his seat and the aura of power vanished. "But, of course, I might be lying."

    Now imagine a page or two of that :D
     
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