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WIP Travel Secrets by E4mj - T

Discussion in 'Almost Recommended' started by Perspicacity, Jun 30, 2015.

  1. Perspicacity

    Perspicacity Destroyer of Worlds ~ Prestige ~ DLP Supporter DLP Gold Supporter

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    Title: Travel Secrets: First (and Second and Third)
    Author: E4mj
    Rating: T
    Genre: Drama
    Library Category: The Alternates
    Pairings: hints of eventual Harry/Luna
    Chapters: 17 (first); 27 (second); 29 (third)
    Words: 50,973 (first); 87,314 (second); 164,802 (third)
    Updated: June 28, 2015 (third)
    Published: Aug 23, 2013
    Status: First and second, complete; third, WIP
    Summary: Harry Potter is living an unhappy life at age 27. He is forced to go on an Auror raid, when the people he saves are not who he thinks. With one last thing in his life broken, he follows through on a plan for Time-travel, back to his past self. Things were not as they once seemed. Slytherin!Harry. Dumbledore and order bashing. No pairing YET. Book one. (The world belongs to Jo!)
    Link: https://www.fanfiction.net/s/9622538/1/Travel-Secrets-First

    I debated whether to put this up for Review since the first two books in the series are not particularly good and the summary won't win many DLP converts. The third in the series is decent enough and fits the description of the Almost Recommended category, sitting "well within the realm of guilty pleasure." It's also actively updating, which is a plus (and a novelty nowadays). The pairing is heading toward a credible Harry/Luna.

    The basic premise is that Harry learns that his parents are still alive, that Dumbledore was lying all along, i.e., the standard angst kit, and goes back in time because he apparently didn't get enough of this the first time. He gets sorted into Slytherin and proceeds to do what pretty much any talented twenty-seven-year-old would do if cast back into his eleven-year-old self.

    Books 1 and 2 are bland. The writing becomes semi-competent by book 3 with a story that's Harry-centric. Luna gets screen time and is written decently (for fanfiction). There's a good bit of attention paid to Slytherin house politics, with students vying for top spot (named, creatively, "King" or "Queen") and trying to establish themselves in the hierarchy. Harry's interaction (one can't really call such a curbstomp a 'rivalry') with Hermione is amusing. His interactions with his professors are hit or miss.

    Some different takes on magic are explored that will make many on DLP cringe, but at least the author seems to be serious about fleshing them out in a somewhat novel way. He makes a big thing about dark and light magic and how this affects spellcasting (charms being "light," transfiguration, "dark," which is a bit odd) and how one's magic can manifest as auras that can be used in all manner of dominance/magical-peen-measuring games (a Slytherin specialty, apparently). Parseltongue and its use is extended from canon. There's a good bit of time spent on flying and Quidditch, which is a bit meh. Some ritual magic is tossed in as well (with a somewhat nontraditional teacher), though this has had little effect on the story so far.

    There are a few WTF moments, such as...
    Harry revealing to Snape that his mother is alive by taking polyjuice and dropping in a lock of her hair. At the end of the scene, he French kisses Snape for no reason whatsoever, except perhaps as a social experiment on the part of the author to see how many readers he can lose.
    The story reminds me of a mash-up between a less angsty Chris Widger Grey Queen (Slytherin Harry ostracized by his peers in the early years, dark and light magic, overt political and magical power games) and Oblong/MrJoe/Fettucini/SerpentSannin Knowledge is Power (Quidditch and magic prodigy, self-assured Harry who maintains an apathetic detachment from much of Hogwarts, save for when he's establishing himself as top tamale).

    I'm perhaps being generous by tagging it 3/5, but it is enjoyable enough of a read that I still check updates.
     
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2015
  2. The DarIm

    The DarIm Groundskeeper

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    I've read this and I agree with everything Pers said.

    3/5 because it is an enjoyable guilty pleasure.
     
  3. IBG

    IBG Seventh Year

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    The latter half of the third book is a 4/5 easily, but the vast majority of the earlier content is really really shitty.

    Since it's still updating and getting better I'll tound the 2.5 it's currently worth up to a 3/5.

    One other thing in its favor is that at least as far as I remember, since I read the first 2 books ages ago, there's a lot less focus on the angst than one would expect, and Harry is much more concerned with consolidating himself and his future instead. Dealing with his parents are still very much a secondary and so far background concern.
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2015
  4. Grubdubdub

    Grubdubdub Supreme Mugwump

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    Can I skip books 1 & 2 then?
     
  5. Mordart

    Mordart Sixth Year

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    Yes you can if you want, I think there's parts of book 2 that are ok, but the third is where the writing start going up in quality. I thought this was dead, the latest update was back in December last I checked. Apparently there was some free time, though if you look at the times for each subsequent book it's taking longer and longer to get out. I expect this series to never finish.

    2/5 for overall quality, though I'll admit it's a guilty pleasure read.
     
  6. Rayndeon

    Rayndeon Professor

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    Seeing this is FFN afterall, I wouldn't be surprised if the author ended up gaining readers instead. All said and done, read the first couple of books in the past and they were so-so. Maybe 2.5/5. Going to start reading the third later.
     
  7. Rahkesh Asmodaeus

    Rahkesh Asmodaeus THUNDAH Bawd Admin DLP Supporter

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    ... moonchild.


    XD
     
  8. xvector

    xvector Second Year

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    I cringed IRL after reading that.
     
  9. Ghosthree3

    Ghosthree3 Unspeakable DLP Supporter

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    Started reading this series since you mentioned it here. Not too far in, the quality obviously isn't top end but I'll tell you one thing that's got me very interested, the hat ignored him.
     
  10. Agravaine

    Agravaine Slug Club Member

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    Is this another one of those skeevy stories where an adult Harry assumes a younger body and grooms an eleven-year-old girl for a romantic relationship? (Fuck that/5, if so.)
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2015
  11. Perspicacity

    Perspicacity Destroyer of Worlds ~ Prestige ~ DLP Supporter DLP Gold Supporter

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    Nah, it's quite the opposite. Unlike, say, NOFP, the story is gen into the third year, with Harry refusing to even visit Hogsmeade with anyone. He shows a bit of kindness to Luna, but nothing romantic as yet (at least as I interpret it).
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2015
  12. Hero of Stupidity

    Hero of Stupidity Villain of Sensibility ~ Prestige ~ DLP Supporter

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    The whole kissing Snape scene is really weird. I mean really weird. But still The fic and even the first two are better then the 99% that you can find. So there is that.
     
  13. Rahkesh Asmodaeus

    Rahkesh Asmodaeus THUNDAH Bawd Admin DLP Supporter

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    ... why did Harry kiss Snape?
     
  14. arkkitehti

    arkkitehti Groundskeeper

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    Harry was using polyjuice with a strand of Lily's hair Snape had treasured to prove that Lily is in fact still alive (the premise being that polyjuice doesn't work on dead people's hair), and decided Snape deserved to get at least one kiss from the woman he was obsessed about. Yeah, it was weird.

    But as said, definitely in the top 1% of FFN, and something I was able to read through again after long time, so 4/5 from me at the moment, though there's definitely potential for it to go way down in the future, with even a possible good!Riddle in the cards. Keeping fingers crossed and a alert active.
     
  15. Rahkesh Asmodaeus

    Rahkesh Asmodaeus THUNDAH Bawd Admin DLP Supporter

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    What the fuck.
     
  16. Ankan

    Ankan Groundskeeper

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    Begun reading the series and really didn't like it but I trudged forward which I now later on regret. I could not bear the to read the entire series so I did as someone previously mentioned and skipped to the third one. Yes quality is somewhat better but it is wasted on shit

    From book 2

    From book 3

    There is alot of stuff in this story that is even more annoying than what I just mentioned.

    2/5
     
  17. Stan

    Stan Order Member

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    To be fair to the author, he did warn you. Not that it stops the story from being shit, but surely that is something you should have expected from the summary itself?
     
  18. Anarchy

    Anarchy Totally Sirius DLP Supporter

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    Reading tens of thousands of words of shit just to get a few nuggets that are okayish doesn't mean the story still isn't shit. Definitely not worth it.
     
  19. Krieger

    Krieger Minister of Magic DLP Supporter

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    Read it, third story was definitely better but still not great, cant even call this a guilty pleasure because without the knowledge the third book would be better I would of dropped it before I got far in.

    Typical stereotyping of Gryffindors in the first couple books, if not toned down in comparison to other Slyhterin fics. But it's still there.

    Three books in and still getting the 'Harry my boy' 'It's Mr Potter you old goatfucker' shit. Seriously if the author sees this just stahp. That shit should only be used once in a fic if you must, not every fucking interaction.

    The sad part? I'm invested now, and the third book was signifcantly better so I will probably folow this story.

    Overall 2/5, third book might scrap a 3/5. There are some good interactions in here outside of the typical Gryffindor/Slyhterin bullshit.
     
  20. Taure

    Taure Magical Core Enthusiast ~ Prestige ~ DLP Supporter

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    Review I put on FF.Net:

    I honestly have no idea what to rate it. I did enjoy the fic, but there are, as stated, deep flaws. I think I will go for a 3/5.
     
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