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WIP Phoenix Corrupted by iamneverwhere - M

Discussion in 'The Alternates' started by TallDarkStranger, Aug 23, 2017.

  1. TallDarkStranger

    TallDarkStranger Fourth Year

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    Title: Phoenix Corrupted
    Author: iamneverwhere
    Rating: M
    Genre: Friendship/Adventure
    Status: WIP (34 chapters, 232k words)
    Library Category: Alternatives? Definitely AU.
    Pairings: None as yet
    Summary: A chance meeting and Albus and Gellert would become inseparable friends, until the death of Albus' sister. But what if Ariana had survived? Almost a century later, a boy named Harry Potter would survive the Killing Curse, finally bringing an end to Grindelwald's war. Now, as he finds a place for himself at Hogwarts, there are signs that suggest that the war might not truly be over.
    Link: https://www.fanfiction.net/s/12177140/1/Phoenix-Corrupted

    I have absolutely no idea how I found this story. Maybe reddit, but they aren't super original.
    Anywho. Divergence is pretty clear, Ariana survives, Dumbledore never receives his shocking-dose-of-empathy-steroid-shot. Grindelwald is the big bad in this, and Tom Marvolo Riddle is the Headmaster of Hogwarts. GG is known as the Lord of Crows, and crows are fucking ubiquitous.

    Standard fare beginning, Dursleys + Weasleys, but tons of canon divergences and each book has a completely different plot than the originals. There are tangential relations (Chamber of Secrets is still a thing, but for different reasons) but no stations of canon per se.

    We're in book 4 now, and Harry is NOT in the tournament. However, it's still interesting because of how the tournament is held.

    Hermione seems canon within reason, Ron is believably Ron under these circumstances, and Peter Pettigrew is NOT his rat.

    Why you should read this:
    Tom Riddle never became Voldemort because he never went evil because he never found the chamber.

    HAGRID IS STILL A WIZARD, BITCHES.

    Chapters are out once a week, the character writing is solid, and Harry is not some 14 year old player.

    I can give this 4/5 since plot is Original, characters are believable under the circumstances, and because Harry is legit terrified of Dumbledore and the author brings this out well.
     
  2. Lord Murtaza

    Lord Murtaza First Year

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    This is factually incorrect. Read Hagrid's explanation of the CoS debacle again. Young TMR found the chamber - and so your explanation for his 'not going evil' makes no sense.

    As for this plot being original, stories where the Dark Lord is Grindelwald and TMR is basically Albus Dumbledore are a dime a dozen. Some of them even have -
    TMR married to MM
    , which was as predictable as it was nauseating.

    What this author does semi decently is making the characters seem canon. Harry, Ron, Hermione and Malfoy all are very similar to their canon selves and at one point in the story
    (when Malfoy smashes the camera Harry was hoping to take a picture of his friends and himself with
    , I'm ashamed to admit, the fic was able to pull at my heartstrings a little. BUT (and this is a very big BUT), some of the canon characters are so far out of left field that I feel they would be better off labeled as OC.

    TMR and Hagrid are the worst offenders in regards to this. Tolerating these characters takes a suspension of disbelief that I am frankly incapable of. Honestly, the more I think about this, the more I understand - the reason why this relatively tiny gripe about the fic (TMR and Hagrid being such OCs) is so jarring is because it's at complete odds with what the fic does well ! When it's just Harry and company the fic reads like an ode to JKR's work - one with an unpredictable storyline. It was somewhat enjoyable, up until my suspension of disbelief failed in light of
    TMR and Hagrid battling GG together in the CoS and enjoying inside jokes

    With that off my chest I can say that the writing is .. decent and the pace is acceptable. The plot isn't all that interesting in my opinion and I probably will not be keeping my eye out for updates.

    2.5/5, rounded down to 2.


     
  3. Jarizok

    Jarizok Groundskeeper

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    The story just not being interesting is what I'm running into as well. I'm 50K words in and there's just nothing that makes me want to keep reading.

    Some things are different from canon, true, but the author doesn't get me curious as to the how or why. The how is steadily revealed, without tension or build up, and the why is clear as of the prologue.

    Without new mysteries, I'm left with reading about Harry making the quidditch team following slightly different events then cannon. The same story with some altered background does not a good story make.

    Things like the reorganising of the classes at least have potential, what with new dynamics and interactions with new characters, but we don't get any at all.

    The writing isn't terrible, but it's so far from gripping that I can't get myself to keep reading for the promised original plot to come.

    2/5
     
  4. elucidinian

    elucidinian First Year

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    Honestly I think that this is a fairly good story for the following reasons. First, the divergences from canon are well explained: for example the reason Riddle does not go evil is because
    he was raised in a well-adjusted home. Merope actually saved Tom Riddle Sr.s life and so he did not abandon them etc., resulting in a pretty ordinary environment for Tom to grow up in.
    These divergences are not thrust onto the reader through narration, but through Harry finding out from engaging with others in the world, and the way that he learns these things reveals much about the characters that tells these things to him, their attitudes towards a certain character or situation - showing instead of telling.

    Second, the plot itself is original because of these divergences. Yes, there are some similarities to canon, the stone still appearing in first year for example, but whatever changes that were made were well explained as the logical causation is still there. A happens or does not happen because B changed.
    Quirrrel did not introduce the troll because Riddle didn't hire him because there was no curse removing all professors competent or otherwise because Riddle did not go evil and so forth.
    These differences create a plot that is still Harry Potter, yet original and coherent. Suspension of disbelief is not really necessary when you consider how the changes made to the plot actually make things like
    TM and Hagrid fighting together
    plausible.

    Finally, good writing and pace already makes it stand out better than most fics.

    4/5
     
  5. illya_

    illya_ First Year

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    If I have to summarize my feelings of the story in one word, it would be fresh.
    But maybe I just read to many rehashed canon stories lately.
    The changes are numerous and grand enough to leave room for mysteries, while still keeping enough untouched so you still feel that you are reading a HP story.

    The story also managed the changes without the use of rectal conjuration...
    I buy all big changes to this story and it hasn't once broken my immersion (except the bloody Erisian).

    There are still mysteries regarding some of the introduced concepts and... well maybe not regarding the characters allegiances (unless the author throws out red herrings as s/he does crows. Anyway, the mysteries and the rather rapid pacing is what made me read through the story so far (38 chapters) within 24 hours.

    There is, in my humbe opinion, however no excuse for the Erisian.
    Time turners are completely imbalanced, illogical and shitty. I can barely stand them being relevant even if they are canon.
    The author managed to introduce something even worse.

    The Erisian part, which left the fate of hogwarts, if not great britain and the world in the hands of a few fumbling 2nd year students is too much for me to take. It is like I'm reading some scooby doo fic or something. I forcefully stop my rant here, because I do not have the vocabulary to properly explain my disdain for that concept.

    In short; once a broken mirror shows up, just skim ahead until the year is over.

    3.5/4 rounded up for potential
     
  6. illya_

    illya_ First Year

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    (sorry for double post, didn't find a button to edit)

    Really thought that the new chapter 39 warranted an edit of my original review. It has one of the best magical battles I've ever read.
    It shows distinct battle styles from both sides, and while Riddle is presented as the more talented magician, he starts of with handicaps while his opponent has no qualms about disregarding her life if it means she can take down Harry.

    The magical spells being flung around are only described as to Harry experiences them and the devastation they wreak.

    While the unspeakable is an OC, her fighting style is fitting one of her profession (it included unexplained things from canon) and 'good' Riddle fights more or less how one would expect from him if he was reluctant to kill his opponent.

    I have no qualms about giving the story a 4/5 just because of this battle.
     
  7. Nevermind

    Nevermind Fifth Year

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    Having read through this over the last couple of days, I have to say that, for some reason, I really like this fic. There are some typos here and there, but it is bearable and I like the rather concise style.

    I apologize in advance for the many spoiler tags, but since this is a relatively new story on here and some of the things I wrote about would give away plot points if left unchecked, I decided that caution should be the better part of valor in this instance.

    As for the plot, it is sufficiently unique to keep me interested – even though I realize that might not be the case for everyone of you. Also, the
    revelations in the last chapter of Year 4 with its many potential gamechangers
    make me very excited for what is to come. I could also do without the TR/MM pairing, but since it has played a decidedly minor part so far this is not a major offence.

    While I have to agree that I did not particularly like the concept (or the execution, for that matter) of the Erisian plotline, the other years have held my interest to such a degree that I would not consider this a major offence, either.
    Also, the mental image of hordes of Hogwarts students running at each other with battle cries on their lips made me laugh – in a good way.

    The character of (Albus) Dumbledore really shines in this this story, as well. He might not have much screen time, but still he manages to have a lasting influence on the story from the beginning.
    I almost forgot that he would have been very likely to be in league with Grindelwald during the war, so getting the rather poignant reminder at the end of Year 4 was a real wake–up call for me.

    I only wish the author would have consulted a (native or otherwise) speaker of German… The following I would consider a spoiler for Year 4, hence the spoiler tags.

    Oh dear, languages can be cruel mistresses indeed. “Krähenkönigs Zeugen“ wouldn‘t even be wrong if Krähenkönig was a name by which Grindelwald went. As it appears to be a title, however, a better way of phrasing would be “des Krähenkönigs Zeugen” or “Zeugen des Krähenkönigs,“ which, as even I have to admit, sounds horribly stilted when inserted into an English-speaking environment. All in all, even putting the phrase in German seems unneccessary and an ill-informed way of inserting unnecessary extravaganza.

    The overall rating is tricky: Better than a 3.5 on my scale, but not quite good enough for now to warrant a 4/5 on merit alone due to the abovementioned flaws. Thus, a 3.75/5 rounded up to 4/5.
     
  8. TallDarkStranger

    TallDarkStranger Fourth Year

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    Just finished catching up with the updates, and I'm pleasantly surprised. This story has always shown ideas of wanting to obliterate canon stops or to go completely off the beaten path, and continues to do so.

    SPOILERS AHEAD:
    I don't know how much people disliked the Erisian plotline, but one of the first things I appreciate in a story is originality, not feeling the need to stick to stations of canon and trying to do something new. Being able to execute these believably (the way WYLB did) would have made this a 5. As it stands, I'd stay with my 4 rating because they're gripping but not tied up very well. There's a lot of different worldbuilding, the revelations that AD may be playing the good cop to GG's bad cop, the murder of Marvolo Gaunt for his ring (did AD+GG finish collecting the hallows? Who has the Elder wand now? Is Harry's cloak all that separates them from being masters of death?), etc. I'm not sure who gave Harry his cloak, but the plot has varied enough, Auror-Sirius is believable, Harry is talented (as you would expect any high school sportsman training with elites) but not OP, and Hermione is Hermione-enough to be only marginally more annoying than her canon self.

    Harry's not a babe magnet (even though I like those wish-fulfilment stories from time to time) either, he's an awkward 14 yo in the throes of his first love and making rash emotional decisions which are well within canon Harry's sensibilities.

    So from the option of either shaping Harry to be complettely different (and showing the progressions of character and choices that resulted therein) or keeping Harry canonical enough to be HJP and still keep him Rowling's HJP reacting to a different set of events, the author has picked option 2 and done well with it. These are the only two ways to write HJP well, and is my main failing with stories like TE7's Quidditch story with Daphne(which is well written but doesn't show how Harry became who he was, which makes it very OC immediately).

    Triwizard Tasks are original enough to be interesting, even though I've seen similar flavors in some other ff stories (which also all happened to be pretty well written).




    Still, 4/5.
     
  9. Matian

    Matian Seventh Year DLP Supporter

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    I don't think anyone rating this story 2/5 (which means it's of poor quality) have read the same story as me. If you want to be harsh about it, the story should warrant an average rating at worst. The world-building alone is worth an average rating or better and that's without looking at great characters like Riddle or Albus Dumbledore, or Harry Potter, whom I absolutely love in this story.

    It's not perfect, but I was really entertained throughout its entirety, all 300.000 words or so. A small pet peeve of mind was how some characters seemingly dissappear or are not important to the (current) story, like Snape or Neville.

    Considering the world-building, the great characters, its uniqueness, this story is an easy 5/5 to me.
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2017
  10. newageofpower

    newageofpower Professor DLP Supporter

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    Gave this a read. Was mildly interesting, though the 'psychological horror' aspect seems forced and contrived, especially in the later chapters.
     
  11. Agni

    Agni Second Year

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    The story definitely gets points for its originality. Harry, most of times, is not too out of character and Ron is definitely Ron if read within the context.

    BUT Tom Riddle, for all intents and purposes, is a bad imitation of canon Dumbledore. Just put any other name in place of TMR and you won't even notice.
    And don't even let me start on TMR and McGonagall and the kiss.
    And then there is Dumbledore....he just doesn't feel like it. He is introduced as a ministry wizard and it just feels wrong.

    Another issue that I have in the latest chapter is with TMR slinging highly advanced magic wandlessly even defeating a highly skilled witch.

    Overall I would rate it 2.5/5 rounded to 3.
     
  12. why?

    why? Sixth Year

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    This story has potential, but it's lacking in...flair? There are consequences to Tom not becoming Voldemort but they aren't far reaching enough. The characters are quite bland. I am not in the least bit curious about them. Everything just falls flat. Zephyr's The Other Side of the Coin has a somewhat similar premise, only it's a lot better executed.

    Granted, I've only read up to the start of year 2 but by now, there should've been more of a hook. As it is, I had to plow through.

    The writing itself isn't bad by any stretch, although there are typos aplenty.

    Not a horrible story, but largely inoffensive. Perhaps this would be more suited for Almost Recommended.

    I'll refrain from rating it just now and do so when I read a bit more.
     
  13. Darthlawyer

    Darthlawyer First Year

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    I really like this story. Its a strong 4/5 for me. It is for me pretty original with interesting concepts. The writing style is good and the pace pretty fast so it doesn't bore. Only the second year felt terrible where there is clear character development in the story in the first year and the 3/4th year in the second year the author seemed to have left that out instead made it i some kind of mystery year in 5 chapters in which nothing of importance happens. If you skip the entire second year you miss nothing.
    --- Post automerged ---
    Do you ave any other TMR is Dumbledore and Dumbles is evil stories you would recommend?
     
  14. Sataniel

    Sataniel Seventh Year

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    I've originally started reading this fic when it was somewhere around the middle of its second year. I've read it up to the end of the year and then got a few chapters backlogged when I stopped reading HP fics for a while. Due to it being pretty bland so far, I've never caught up with it until some time, when the praise in this topic made me catch up.

    And I must say that from this point on, you can very much see the constant improvement. The magic-affecting charms were made to actually make sense, there was more foreshadowing for a longterm plot, etc. Still, it was only in the fourth year when we actually started a decent foreshadowing for a year-arc plot, and it was only in the fourth year when the stuff that is supposed to be exciting started being written in an exciting manner, culminating in the great finale of this year subplot.

    Another thing that we finally got in the fourth year is a development for Harry. And it was really needed, seeing as the Harry in this fic was terribly bland with stuff like his tendency for great comebacks gone. The same problem was visible with other characters, leading to absolute lack of initial conflict. Especially bad were they friends from other houses - they aren't even one dimensional, they are basically cut-outs which only purpose is to exist. When I reviewed it long ago, the author told me that they are supposed to get development later. Well, it'll be much too late considering when they were introduced.

    I'm pretty excited for what is to come, but the earlier years hold the score down - 6/10.
     
  15. Distended Destiny2018

    Distended Destiny2018 First Year

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    I agree that the fic is not so good if one looks at plot, characterizations and so on. But, the potential directions this fic could be directed as of the latest chapter is what keeps me hooked.
     
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