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WIP October by The Carnivorous Muffin - T

Discussion in 'Almost Recommended' started by Dark Minion, Jun 22, 2015.

  1. Dark Minion

    Dark Minion Bright Henchman Moderator DLP Supporter

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    Title: October
    Author: The Carnivorous Muffin
    Rating: T
    Genre: Drama/Friendship
    DLP-Category: Restricted Section / The Alternates
    Pairing: Harry P./ Tom R. Jr.
    Chapters: 27
    Words: 85,206
    Updated: Jun 8, 2015
    Published: Apr 30, 2014
    Status: Work in Progress

    Summary:
    It is not paradox to rewrite history, in the breath of a single moment a universe blooms into existence as another path fades from view, Tom Riddle meets an aberration on the train to Hogwarts and the rest is in flux. AU, time travel, Death!Harry, slash

    Link: https://www.fanfiction.net/s/10311215/1/


    Yes, it’s slash, but one sided. (At least for now) Harry never answers his feelings and probably doesn’t even realise Tom is interested in him until late in the story.

    The story is following Tom Riddle from the first time he boards the Hogwarts Express and is now (chapter 20) somewhere in the 1960ies, with some timeskips in between. On board the Express he meets a weird boy, who doesn’t even know the year. Despite being sorted into different houses, the boy, Azrael, an outcast like himself, is the only one Tom starts to associate with.

    The story is written in Tom Riddle’s point of view. Azrael (Death!Harry, of course) is a side character, but Tom’s attention is focussed on the boy who seems to be a natural at magic, even without a wand. Then World War II starts, soon accompanied by Grindelwald’s war, and Azrael leaves Hogwarts to deal with both. It’s only then that Tom really starts to get attracted to him.

    Azrael/Harry really deals with both Muggle and Grindelwald's war, and that's where the story really gets AU.

    Carnivorous Muffin explores some facets of Tom Riddle, who, during his school years, really isn’t a likeable character and perhaps more or less mad. One key element of the story is Tom’s perception of the magical society, its problems and his own standing within the Wizarding World. In the orphanage he considered himself special, and now he is a third rated citizen in a society not based on skills but on birth and political power. But then, he, a Muggleborn in Slytherin, learns about his ancestry and starts to create Lord Voldemort – a persona intended to spread fear and eventually rule over the purebloods.

    I started reading it despite its warning, because I really liked ‘Lily and the Art of being Sisyphus’. Its style is indeed similar, but more than in the other story the writing sometimes or perhaps even often deteriorates into ramblings without any punctuation. Sometimes it works great, sometimes it looks like a desperate cry for a beta reader. At times it really is difficult to read.

    Tom’s character development has one important turning point that you have to accept. It is prepared ahead but it depends on the reader believing it or not. Azrael/Harry isn’t Harry Potter anymore but basically a god who at first seems to take the whole story as some kind of holidays. But when Grindelwald threatens Britain, Azrael starts to use his abilities to change the world – and eventually to create a new one. Oh, yeah, that’s another point you have to accept, but that's something that comes being a god.

    I like it despite its problems and rate it 4/5, but I can see that it might end in the trash bin.
     
  2. Vira

    Vira Order Member

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    I like slash and enjoy this author's stories, but this one didn't really interest me. While this fic takes a less-crackish approach, some events strain my disbelief.

    After ending World War II by himself, Harry goes public as a ruler of a empty country, then proceeds to terraform Mars and open it up to both muggle and magical immigration. The world just kind of accepts it, and while the Ministry of Magic is planning to assassination Harry for breaking the statute of secrecy, it's more of a background thing.
    Actually, I think that's the problem with this fic. There's few stakes. No one can pose a threat to Harry or his interests since he's omnipotent. The only suspense is the romance between Harry and Tom, and that's not strong enough to keep my interest.

    Otherwise, it's an interesting fic with an unique situation between Harry and Tom.

    3.5/5.
     
  3. Stan

    Stan Order Member

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    This is my least favorite of all fics written by The Carnivorous Muffin. There are a couple of interesting concepts, like Ubik, but most of the story is bland, especially compared to the author's other fics.

    Still, I follow the updates, and that should count for something.

    2.5/5.
     
  4. newageofpower

    newageofpower Professor DLP Supporter

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    Tangential Thoughts:

    There's a bunch of FFnet authors using The [X] Muffin as their names. I wonder if they are related.
     
  5. Drake

    Drake Seventh Year

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    I actually really like October. I think all the complaints about it have been fairly accurate though. It's a very meandering fix, but it goes places that I haven't seen many fics go. I especially like the current arc the story is on. Now one thing I know many people have different opinions on is exactly how magic works and that can really turn people off in some cases if they disagree.

    Ultimately, this is another Carnivorous Muffin fic. That means Harry is Death (with a capital D), magic is another fundamental force of physics, and Tom Riddle isn't a raving lunatic.

    4/5
     
  6. Palindrome

    Palindrome A bigger, darker mark Moderator DLP Supporter

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    I sort of like this story, and sort of dislike it.

    I like the author, and at times the ponderous pace and flow of her stories is quite enthralling. On the other hand, sometimes in this story it's tedious. Occasionally it feels like we're doing a whole lot of nothing.

    I like how Tom regards Azrael, if you take out the romantic element. The curiosity is done very well, and their relationship is explained believably. But the romantic element itself feels quite tacked on: it seems like romance was planned before the story went anywhere and by the time the story got there an actual serious stab at a romance would feel incredibly out of place. It does serve a purpose in explaining Tom's obsession further, but the story very much doesn't need it.

    At the same time, it's really not intrusive. Even if you avoid slash you'll probably find it tolerable. Personally I don't like any romance in fanfiction - luckily this story barely has any.

    For the rest of the content, it's both tedious and we enthralling. If you're in the mood for more of the author's strange style in a serious tone, you'll like it. If you're not in the mood for something a little heavy, you'll find it irritating.

    The world built up and the character of harry are intriguing, and enjoyable to read about. The only downside is that it often feels slow, even if it's not particularly.

    As you can probably tell, I'm rather conflicted over this. The question is, how to rate it? I was tempted to give it a three, but can I say that this story is 'average'? I don't think so, really. It's definitely good, but in an occasionally frustrating way. YMMV.

    4/5
     
  7. Quiddity

    Quiddity Unspeakable

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    I read maybe 17 chapters of this story. I've never read any of the authors stuff before, but I found if interesting enough as a concept to try. Unfortunately, nothing really happens in it - or, more to the point, the stuff that does happen is not told in a very interesting way. Emphasis on told, there, too. Very little of the interesting happenings are shown in this fic - even the Tom-Azrael relationship (more on this in a moment) relies greatly on that, which only serves to make it harder to get engaged in it.

    The slash is, as has been mentioned, both hardly a presence but also bad for it. It comes up once every 5 chapters or so, and does so in a way that makes it seem incredibly tacked on, that the author has realized that he needs to include some. It would function much better if that was simply cut out, with the focus remaining on Tom/Azrael's relationship but not bothering to add a romantic dimension to it, as it simply doesn't work.

    But the reason I eventually dropped it was the way that magic is discarded and treated as a part of science, and beneath it. I got and accepted when he wanted to hold Azrael's magic above that of Hogwarts, and even the focus on it's philosophical component. The realization that Tom is disillusioned with humanity and not just muggles I found equally acceptable. But when Tom is dismissing fields of magic, and scientists are saying that transfiguration is simply a small part of mundane physics extended, I lose interest.

    And I'd cope with that if the story and writing was engaging enough. But personally, it wasn't.

    3/5

    Decent timewaster, but nothing more.
     
  8. Dark Minion

    Dark Minion Bright Henchman Moderator DLP Supporter

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    I actually saw the attempts at explaining magic as extension of physics as that: Attempts of Muggles to describe what they saw, based on the knowledge they have.

    When I started studying Physics, the first thing explained to us was Plato's Cave Analogy and that it is still a valid explanation for how scientists work. And I think that (and the usual 'Muggles only see what they want to see') fits here as well.
     
  9. NuScorpii

    NuScorpii Professor

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    I think the best parts of this story are from before Tom's graduation. There was a lot of intrigue, and the interactions were very well done, both from Tom and Harry sides.

    After that, it started deteriorating. Parts of the plot seemed... I'm not sure what exactly, but they didn't seem to flow well, and were not as interesting to read as the earlier parts of the story.

    That aside, overall the story was an interesting read.

    I'll rate it a 3.5/5, but this is once of those exceptions where I round it up instead of down.
     
  10. Quiddity

    Quiddity Unspeakable

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    I think the way it was phrased showed an endorsement by Azrael, who is basically WoG in this fic.
     
  11. Stan

    Stan Order Member

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    The author wrote two oneshots that are a crossover of this fic and Lily and the Art of Being Sisyphus.

    They are, um, different. And sort-of interesting too. I like the second one better, it is more serious in tone than the first one.
     
  12. Drake

    Drake Seventh Year

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    This just got updated. I'm curious to see the fallout of this new development.
     
  13. Henry Persico

    Henry Persico Groundskeeper DLP Supporter

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    It's the first time I read something from this author, and I can't say I didn't enjoy it. While Tom was in Hogwarts the story hold my interest, once he graduated I had trouble maintaining my interest in it. Minion stated it was hard to believe in some plot points, I think he was right. For me it was Tom Riddle's development, it was interesting to read him develop and later destroy Lord Voldemort's concept, his relationship with Azrael, but it doesn't interest me his career as an Ambassador, or in this case Assistant Ambassador. That's just not Tom Riddle for me. So I dropped the story. Also "Gridlewald"... :mad:

    I think it's more than almost recommended but not good enough for the library.


    3.5
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2016
  14. amethystrei

    amethystrei Squib

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    I wanted to enjoy this story. I really did. The beginning of the fic certainly held my interest--I enjoyed the author's take on both Tom and Harry, enjoyed the way they interacted, and was genuinely curious to know the story would play out. Unfortunately, I lost interested shortly after Tom left Hogwarts and quit the fic.

    Quiddity has already said it so I won't rehash my issues with the way magic is portrayed--or rather, how Tom perceives magic--in the fic. It was a turn-off.

    All this being said, the fic did have its good points. It was atmospheric, very decently written, and flowed well. Take my review with a grain of salt.

    2.5/5
     
  15. Drake

    Drake Seventh Year

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    Not to justify anyone forcing themselves to read further, but I figure letting you know what happens afterwards could lead some to continue reading:

    Tom gets exiled from Mars. He then goes on to become the Muggle Studies professor alongside McGonagall becoming the new Transfiguartion professor. The story then moves on to Tom teaching the Mauraders generation.
     
  16. Dark Minion

    Dark Minion Bright Henchman Moderator DLP Supporter

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    Well, yeah Henry Persico - you should skim through the Mars chapters and continue to read after Tom and Azira part ways.
     
  17. Henry Persico

    Henry Persico Groundskeeper DLP Supporter

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    I did. Thanks for the advice (you too Drake), I finished what it has been posted and my interest has been renewed.
     
  18. Gene

    Gene Third Year

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    The romance adds nothing whatsoever to the story, but if good romance was a precondition for a good story, half of the library wouldn't exist.

    The mars stuff is awful, the attempt to constrain magic within the framework of modern scientific knowledge is poor, and, again, the romance is useless.

    Aside from that, it's a good read, but not much more than that.

    3/5
     
  19. Dark Minion

    Dark Minion Bright Henchman Moderator DLP Supporter

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    After quite some time the author updated again. We get to see some Snape. Also Azrael has a cameo and there is some awkward scene about Tom's relationship with Lily.

    It ends with a (perhaps huge) cliffhanger.
     
  20. Xion

    Xion Robot Overlord Admin

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    October has been updated with a new chapter.

    Story Stats
    Chapters: 41
    Words: 152,232
    Updated: 2018-12-11 02:33:36 UTC
    Published: 2014-04-30 03:25:13 UTC
    Previously updated: 4 months ago

    Brought to you by Scryer story thread updates.
     
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