Quote of the Week 1.26

"You get a strange feeling when you're about to leave a place. Like you'll not only miss the people you love but you'll miss the person you are now at this time and this place, because you'll never be this way ever again."
-Azar Nafisi

Friday, April 4, 2014

The Shore Between Kingdoms

Posted by A Drop of Romeo at 3:00 PM 0 comments
The Shore Between Kingdoms by OrangePanda
Humans and merpeople have remained separated for generations. But when a merman is captured by fishermen, Calder must prevent war between the two groups while contemplating his attraction for the merman who mysteriously developed human legs. 
Banner Credit: MajordlyFantastic
Helen Thinks: It is a rare pleasure to read a fantasy story,
especially one with a slash love story, and I have to say that it is delivered by OrangePanda in “The Shore Between Kingdoms”. The separate worlds of the human and the merpeople are challenged together one night when a couple of fishermen capture a merman they state were trying to tip their boat over. However, the merman is unable to be freed due to having developed legs and it would take until the next full moon for his tail to return. To prevent war between the two civilisations, Calder; advisor to the Queen; becomes a guardian for Kuval as well as showing him how different land is to the sea. What he did not expect was to develop feelings for the merman, especially when Kuval had made it clear that they could never do anything because merpeople did not allow themselves to feel like humans do. But can it really be that cut and dry?

The best thing about “The Shore Between Kingdoms” is that OrangePanda's prose helps set the scene and pace flawlessly. They manage to fit a month of activities into twelve short chapters and yet there is not the feeling that the story has been rushed which makes me want to applaud OrangePanda's writing because that can be hard to do. Another high note with OrangePanda's writing is that they just write the perfect amount of fantasy into their story. Sometimes it is easy to go overboard with the amount of lore and information that can be shared between writer and reader but this never happens in “The Shore Between Kingdoms”. Enough information is shared so that the plot is understandable and to help the story develop as the fictitious month passes by.

“The Shore Between Kingdoms” delivers with it's fantastic fantasy plot line and full roster of characters that have their own role to play in the story makes this a story that you will read in one sitting.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Playing with Fire

Posted by A Drop of Romeo at 3:00 PM 0 comments
Playing with Fire by misswonderlnd
Leah had gotten pretty good at being invisible. Her older brother Luke, however, decides it is time to rekindle the friendship they once had. And he isn't the only one- his best friend Cameron seems determined to rediscover Leah too. But in what way?
Banner Credit: Ali
Melissa ThinksLeah is a year younger than her popular brother Luke who seems to overshadow her at every opportunity. It isn't until his senior year that Luke begins to take an interest in his sister's existence again. With him comes Cameron; the caring best friend who's always had a soft spot for Leah. How will the two handle their attraction to each other without letting Luke find out?

Those who liked So Much to Learn will find this story delightful and fulfilling. The author has a natural, smooth, and funny voice which helps add to the believability of the characters. Leah and Cam are adorable and their character development over the course of the story makes everything ten times more interesting. There's enough drama in the story to keep you utterly engrossed in the story, but it never gets to a point where you're annoyed.

The "brother's best friend" plot device is a cliche that never gets old, so Playing With Fire fits right in with the other fantastic stories in the category.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Back in the Day, When Being Was Unbearably Light

Posted by A Drop of Romeo at 3:00 PM 0 comments
Back in the Day, When Being Was Unbearably Light by SophieInPink
She never thought she'd be the type of girl to end up in one of those oh so forbidden student-teacher relationships, yet here she is. But there's a twist: she's the teacher. And he is her defiant, charming, disarmingly attractive student.
Banner Credit: Ali
Marta ThinksThe best part about Back in the Day, When Being Was Unbearably Light is the ending. It's open-ended, satisfying and not at the same time, and not at all expected. Ironically, not in the way you'd think. And no, you're not allowed to just skip down to the bottom and read it because you'll miss the amazing story attached to it (and it probably wouldn't make much sense anyway).

As the summary states, this is a story about a teacher and her complex relationship with her student (aka 'Beautiful Boy'). It starts with the two during the school dance he is supposed to be attending and she is supposed to be chaperoning. They're in his car, and she 'recalls the path to [her] own destruction,' which started five months ago.

Narrated in 2nd person, this one-shot is written so well that 'flawless' isn't even close. But it wasn't only SophieInPink's prose that made her story so great. If I had to give an award for character portrayal, this is the story I'd give it to. They're interesting, and at the same time consistent and realistic, which is a hidden gem if I've even seen one.

Friday, March 28, 2014

My Favorite Scooper

Posted by A Drop of Romeo at 3:00 PM 0 comments
My Favorite Scooper by Noon Breeze
So what if I like ice cream? I happen to like it a lot. That's the reason I go to Freezle's every Tuesday, Friday and Saturday night at a time between five and ten. It has nothing to do with the fact that those are the hours Tony Valinti works. Nothing. 
Banner Credit: Marta
Marta ThinksUtterly adorable and dosed with a humorous narrator, "My Favorite Scooper" is a compelling read. The structure is formulaic, but it works, and works incredibly well, especially considering the lack of dialogue. The only thing that caught me off for a moment was the different wording of the last two paragraphs, but I think it hardly matters. "My Favorite Scooper" was still as magical as ever.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

You Should Be Shot

Posted by A Drop of Romeo at 3:00 PM 0 comments
You Should be Shot by i call it laughable
what really goes on in the darkroom during photography class.
Banner Credit: Marta
Helen ThinksThe first thing that jumped out at me about "You Should be Shot" by I call it laughable is the almost gritty edge to the prose that the author has chosen. Despite still being a poem that has a romantic undertone to it, the rawness towards the emotions portrayed seen to remind the reader of how awkward a time it is to have feelings for someone at high school. There's chemistry there but at the same time there's the sickening, confusing feeling of is this right? Through the use of bending literary rules like using the symbol '&' in text and by putting short sentences in parenthesis, the author creates a layout that just adds to the rawness that they are trying to put across. It makes the sentence come to a standstill, almost as if the narrator is having a little afterthought in their head about the situation and it just provides another glimpse into the confusion of a teenage mind. With beautiful yet almost gritty prose, a killer last line and stunning layout, "You Should be Shot" is a bittersweet read.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Study Me Dead

Posted by A Drop of Romeo at 3:00 PM 0 comments
Study Me Dead by AceChant
"Please don't freak out." His words echoed in my head like a mantra, until it was possible all my other thoughts had been obliterated. I shoved the skull in his face, just short of hitting him. "I am holding your skull in my hands. What did you expect?"
Banner Credit: Marta
Marta ThinksLima meets a boy. But he's not just any boy. Oh no, he's not like any boy she's ever met. Because he's a ghost. And not just a random ghost: he's a magical ghost. Who was murdered. Yeah. Didn't expect that, did you?

I really enjoyed the piece. The plot itself was enjoyable (perhaps not overly original, but it still kept me engaged), though the real gem of it all was Lima and her narrative voice. Her inner thoughts were humorous, and helped show a fluffy and enjoyable side to a mystery supernatural plot. It walked the fine line between detracting from the story and not being effective, but AceChant managed to balance all of this effortlessly.

And the ending? One word: perfect.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

S T A G N A T E

Posted by A Drop of Romeo at 3:00 PM 0 comments
S T A G N A T E by CaveDwellers
He never stopped her. She could rant and rave and scream at him all she wanted. She could rape him, slap him, just stand here kissing him until she passed out, and he’d let her do it.Banner Credit: Melissa
Marta ThinksI've never read anything like S T A G N A T E and I doubt I ever will. It's a truly unique story, and I mean that in the strictest sense of the word. The premise takes a twist on what would seem like an abusive relationship (there is definitely a swap when it comes to the genders), and the story is told in a fairly narrative and descriptive manner, which works, despite its potential problems.

Of course, the ending - the last part - is the strongest bit of the whole tale. It leaves you wondering and pondering, desperate to know the entire background and the thoughts of the male lead. You won't ever, it's unlikely, but maybe that mystery is part of its magic.

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