Reviews: Arc Of Sacrifices
Sacrifices... (Spoilers herein)
I... couldn't read this fic first time around. I found it bingeing these here reclists and I tried the prologue of Saving Connor and... I locked up. Panicked. Complete, total NOPE-out. I immediately closed the tab, and resolved to never think on it again. Back then, I was just coming out of an incredibly manipulative and emotionally abusive relationship. This should tell you just how accurate the abuse aspects of this series are. Later, about a year and a half? I'd healed up a chunk from what my ex had done and one of my friends recommended the series to me. I will admit I'd forgotten the name by then. So I sat down, and I opened up the fic. Mild panic, that time. Decided, what the hell, I trusted the word of this friend, I should try to push through this and at LEAST read the first chapter, rather than quitting at the prologue again. So I did. I did not come up for air until halfway through book 5. Harry's mindset is amazing. If you have a mind capable of keeping track of many characters you'll have an easy time with the OCs, if not, the author's old LJ is still up and has character lists covering most of the most important ones if you need the help. My favourite of the OC's is probably Sylarana, although Kanerva, Indigena and Ignifer also come close. Every character - and I do mean every character - in this fic is amazingly done. They are diverse, they are distinct, you can see a lot of the motivations and reasons for their choices in each and every case. Female characters are never shat on. Ron never goes evil. The Weasleys are not bashed and, ok this is the best bit for me even though this fic feat. Dumbledore going evil there is never at any point any bashing. It's incredible. The worldbuilding is also incredible. New species, snippets of different cultures, spells, rituals, professions, cliched ideas done so SO well (Necromancy. I have so many issues with how that's used these days to mean "zombies" because the word actually comes from the Greek Nekros - dead, and -manteia - to divine .'. to divine by way of the dead and this fic does both and I'm not even slightly mad.) This fic is not easy to get into if you've ever been emotionally abused or severely manipulated. It will be a regular reminder and it will hurt. But it is so SO worth it. You will see Harry heal and, at least for me, I found that helped me to heal some. It will give you small ideas to chew on and to think on, fic concepts you will find niggling at your mind late at night. You will end up staying awake for 36 hours straight because you can't bear to leave the story where it was. I almost didn't write an essential coursework essay because of this fic! This fic will make you laugh and smile and cry and rage and you will get to the very end and feel that perfect relaxation of a story well handled and well done and well rounded to it's finish.
Intense, Will Blow You Away
This series is definitely my favourite in the entire fandom. With its cleverly written plot twists and vivid characters, this story will keep your eyes glued to the screen. It's action-packed with just the right amount of drama when necessary, and especially spectacular in its excellent worldbuilding. And I mean, superbly done. Everything is just so rich, the Light and Dark families and their relationships and customs, the world feels real to the reader. It is very carefully thought out, and each event or character will probably come to be important later, so for those who love detail, this is going to be one great big treasure hunt. Harry here is definitely very different from canon. The author manages to add flavour and intriguing twists to the common HP cliches she sports, showing once again that Tropes Are Tools. (Eg: evil!Dumbledore, Harry has a twin.) In particular are the twists involving the Prophecies, I had suspected for a moment but at the same time it came from an angle that I never saw coming. Each location is beautifully described, each OC stands out as distinguished characters, all of different backgrounds and moralities and motives. The author takes even the smallest of characters and expands on them, giving them so much development and depth in ways you don't expect and love for it. The author has done research on child abuse, that I see very plainly. So this fic will make you tear your hair out at times, but in a good way, usually filled with delicious suspense and mystery. The parallels with canon are very interesting to see played out, and the relationships between thec characters are convincing and not forced at all. However, the story does have its flaws, that become apparent especially in the fifth book onwards in regards to Harry and Draco's relationship, I felt like it was a Romantic Plot Tumor that took up waaay too much page time. Also some parts in the later books are stretched out for too long and are a little boring to read, sometimes even getting depressing, but if you manage to ignore these flaws, you're in for a very good pay-off by the end. Excellent story, a must read!
An Outstanding Story
Slash isn't my cup of tea, and I normally avoid it. But this story caught my attention, enough that I didn't much mind the hot and heavy scenes that occasionally appeared towards the end of the series. From "Saving Connor" to "I Am Also Thy Brother", this is the most emotionally draining story I have ever read. It was intense and imprinted itself on my soul. I can honestly say that it may very well be the best story I've ever read. The beginning starts a little rough, but over the course of this massive fic you can see Lightning on the Wave's quality of writing increase. You can see dozens of new characters introduced, but each maintains a unique identity and isn't drowned out by the others, nor do they supplant existing ones. It is a masterfully written piece of art.
Really enjoyed this
Honestly, I enjoyed this series far more than I enjoyed the original books. She takes minor and major characters and gives them history and backstory. More importantly, she's managed to create a wizarding world with it's own life and culture that is worth discovering. Nothing in this series is particularly simple, and there are very few easy answers. Since it's wildly AU, each character is different in various ways, but for logical reasons. The antagonists all have justifications, and the level of antagonism matches well with the level of skills from the protagonists. All in all, *highly* worth reading. Oh, the books do have a focal m/m romantic relationship *much* later in the series (and many slash and het pairings aside from that), but this is by no means a story centered on romance. I'd recommend it for slash and het fans alike.
An excellent premise
But I find the cast of Sues a bit annoying. It's not that bad, actually, and the author Did The Research for child abuse response, but it starts to get confusing, and the Ocs start to nibble at the edges of the story with intent to take over. Harry is very different, so don't expect complete Icness, especially from Draco and Malfoys in general. Another warning for extreme gore and violence (one man, is, for example, made into a human Dark Mark while still alive, and there are mentions of insane people and cannibalism in the same sentence). And, of course, blueberries.