Reviews: The World Without The War
A bit up and the it went tumbling down
While I at first enjoyed the story, when it still showed promise, I was willing to overlook its shortcomings, but these didn't... vanish. Rather, it grew complacent. The pacing is fast, and the core group keeps on growing, without addressing the necessary characterization of both canon and original characters. The author admits writing the story without much planing, excepting a few major points (Sokka and Azula boning, the Big Bad and something else) and it shows in a bad way. Many plot points are pulled out of thin air, characters develop on the drop of a hat and when the author feels like making a point, it is by blunt force. So yeah, I do not recommend that. (most recent chapter: 28)
This fic is just Crazy Awesome. It starts of with the obvious For Want Of A Nail; as in "What if Avatar Roku didn't have a temper tantrum after Firelord Sozin made his first move?" After, all, he's the Avatar, and even the Firelord isn't a real threat. They instead have a drawn-out political debate that results in Sozin's "colony" being less "British India" and more "British Hong Kong", permitting the Fire Nation to show off its Good Intentions without the Extremism and creating the Title Drop. Instead of a Stern Chase, we get a guided tour of a world at (relative) peace - one that it's easy to imagine as what the Avatar world is like without a Big Bad on the warpath. It makes otherwise absurd situations such as Sokkla rather natural. It even fixes a Missed Moment Of Awesome - Toph Meets Bumi.
Darker and edgier in spite of the fact that the world itself undoubtedly sucks less than that of canon, and in spite of said edginess regularly takes time out to parody itself in interludes, and at one point Azula complains about chafing leather pants (falls somewhere between lampshade hanging and invoked trope as yes, Azula's a good guy here, but it's an AU where her father's corrupting influence was nipped before doing too much damage). Oh, and some truly, truly epic world building (which was the point of the exercise, after all). And then it tops it all off by taking the undisputed heavyweight champion of all Avatar crack pairings—Azula/Sokka—and making it plausible (though, granted, AU).