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Dumbledore's Army
Reviews for: On Becoming a Woman
Review(s): 29

Reviewer: tykoDate: 2007-10-14
Reviewid: 149624Chapter: 1
So this review's coming a little late, two and half years and two books after the story was written. But it's still haunting and remarkable, and luckily has stood the test of canon rather well. (Not that there's a lot that would change, but Sirius's mother's forename comes to mind.) The characterization of Narcissa is spot-on. I think she's often portrayed a little too sympathetically in fafics, which is probably the result of HBP Ch. 2... which of course didn't exist when this was written. I remember JKR saying that Narcissa shared the views of her husband firmly until the Death Eaters threatened Draco. I'm not so sure about the Sirius part; I think him being at any Black weddings is a bit of a stretch. But no one can help but feel sorry for Narcissa after reading this story; I love fics about the relationship between the Black sisters, though, and this captured that element perfectly. It's actually kind of shocking that this was written pre-HBP and DH, considering how well it pins down Bellatrix and Narcissa's characters. Anyway... good story, and keep up the work... I see you're still writing.

Reviewer: HannahDate: 2005-06-25
Reviewid: 125080Chapter: 1
Terrific story. You're amazing at characterization: it was chilling the way Narcissa changed throughout the story. I also loved the personality you created for Andromeda and the way you portrayed Bellatrix. And the name Draco's having come out of a story was a really clever idea.

Reviewer: SeasprayDate: 2005-04-24
Reviewid: 120481Chapter: 1
This made me want to cry. The way the two women so cruelly shattered her illusions at the beginning about Lucius loving her, and how readily they would disown her was breath- taking. I couldn't believe Flavia was talking to her own daughter. Sirius and Bella were excellently characterised- I love that Sirius kept his promise in the end in spite of everything, even if he did it hiding behind a statue. And I loved Andromeda's story of their childhood- and Narcissa named her son Draco after all so perhaps there will be some hope for her... someday. Narcissa could have been a decent person if she'd had the chance- the guts and the mind to break away. The loveless, frozen, formal life you describe her leading seems- such a tragic conclusion. This is a wonderful story, it deserved to win an award. Well done!

Reviewer: Morag CamshronDate: 2005-04-15
Reviewid: 119667Chapter: 1
I particularly like the tea scene; social events — especially those of the old-fashioned purebloods, I’d imagine — are never safe. Great job on portraying Narcissa’s emergence from girl to woman.

- Morag Camshron

Reviewer: nooneyaknowDate: 2005-04-12
Reviewid: 119439Chapter: 1
neat

Reviewer: ZaraDate: 2005-04-11
Reviewid: 119193Chapter: 1
Snif...... so dsad,,.. and so very very well written. I( lOVED it

Reviewer: KatieDate: 2005-04-10
Reviewid: 119167Chapter: 1
Really sad. Actually, Flavia was wrong when she corrected Narcissa "whom you will marry." You only use whom with a preposition, like 'to whom' or 'for whom.' Still, I loved the story.

Reviewer: Pacific RoseDate: 2005-04-10
Reviewid: 119121Chapter: 1
Wow! I love how you howed a completely diffrent side of Narcissa, one that is a lot more human that the cold image we get of her in the books. Har transition from girl to woman, from innocent to slighly evil, is really well done. And I realy like the conversations with Andromeda ans Sirius. Great Job!

Reviewer: Aura Black ChanDate: 2005-04-09
Reviewid: 119112Chapter: 1
This is great! I loved how you showed Narcissa slowly going from her childhood ideals to taking up her families beliefs and traditions. Also loved your explanation for Draco's name.

Reviewer: Pineapple QueenDate: 2005-04-09
Reviewid: 119090Chapter: 1
This was marvellous. The best representation of an underrepresented character that I've ever seen. I especially liked her meeting with Sirius and Andromeda--very well done, and it's interesting to note the differences in the way she interacts with them. Great job!

-PQ

Reviewer: Eudora HawkinsDate: 2005-04-08
Reviewid: 119044Chapter: 1
Wow! You did an excellent job of showing the metamorphosis of Narcissa's character from young maiden to pureblood aristocrat. The tea scene was particularly telling with all its unspoken rules and pitfalls.

But the ending was the best. Just when we think that the old Narcissa has been completely buried, you offer a glimmer of hope. Narcissa finally manages a bit of veiled rebellion in the naming of her heir.

Nicely done!
Eudora

Reviewer: alyceDate: 2005-04-08
Reviewid: 119014Chapter: 1
It's so nice to see you back again-after a year of no updates!
I think you writing style has improved a lot, both in your content and in your ideas. Keep working hard!
I love your stories!

Reviewer: louisaDate: 2005-04-07
Reviewid: 118965Chapter: 1
Great transition from uncertain and slightly fanciful girl into ice queen supreme! I look forward to reading more of your work.

Reviewer: ZahriDate: 2005-04-07
Reviewid: 118910Chapter: 1
This just took my breath away. Narcissa Black/Malfoy is neglected and often mishandled by fanfiction authors, but this developed her into a real character.

I like how Narcissa walks a fine line in the fic, balanced among pure-bloods and pure-blood ethics, but still having hesitations as Narcissa Black. That she discards them totally upon becoming Narcissa Malfoy and being the perfect pure-blood wife is very evocative and rings true - she's doing her bit for the war effort, for her husband and for her beliefs.

Sirius turning up for his cousin's wedding and insisting on staying, and Narcissa letting him is beautiful. I like that Sirius never really let go. Contrasted to the end, where Narcissa refuses to acknowledge Andromeda (but still calls 'Algernon' Draco), the change is large, but only externally.

I really, really liked it.

Reviewer: Mcily NochiDate: 2005-04-05
Reviewid: 118779Chapter: 1
Beautiful, and perfect. I love the progression, how she changes from a sweet girl who wants an outdoor June wedding to a young woman who will not acknowledge her kin. Chilling.

Reviewer: AstridDate: 2005-04-05
Reviewid: 118773Chapter: 1
Wow, you made me pity Narcissa. I didn't think that was possible.

Reviewer: StarseaDate: 2005-04-05
Reviewid: 118759Chapter: 1
Wonderful story, nicely structured. There have been a few on this theme, but none as delicate and thorough as this one. I can see why it won first prize. You can see Narcissa changing as time passes - case in point is how she reacts to Sirius, then how she reacts to Andromeda. The writing is subtle, almost simplistic, but you really capture Narcissa's mentality and emotions. You gave her humanity without making her too nice.

xxx~Starsea~xxx

Reviewer: Reader2Date: 2005-04-05
Reviewid: 118744Chapter: 1
Excellent. Quite enjoyed.

Reviewer: CornedBeeDate: 2005-04-05
Reviewid: 118738Chapter: 1
Proof of a recent argument in the Angst and Darkness thread, that it's possible to write a dark fic without angst. Because dark this is. Dark, scary even in its cleanness and coldness, but a great read.

Reviewer: AlkariDate: 2005-04-05
Reviewid: 118724Chapter: 1
A really Excellent story, beautifully written. It is so chilling, and so very sad, particularly as we see the Narcissa that might have been, and the girl/woman she became. It is as though her whole personality and soul gradually became encased in ice, with a fixed mask, so that she neither would nor could respond as a 'person'.

I particularly enjoyed the way you portrayed the Black 'family' as a whole - or rather, as all the little entities it became. The Narcissa / Bellatrix / Sirius confrontation was deftly handled; the Andromeda / Narcissa meeting was heartbreaking.

And that tea-party!! The way that tea had to be poured just so; the way that everyone had to sit in the right places, respond in exactly the right way; where every little nuance of movement had a Social Significance. Quite frightening.

I am certainly going to be recommending this fic!

Reviewer: US HP FanDate: 2005-04-05
Reviewid: 118714Chapter: 1
Great story. So sad to see how Narcissa changed.

Reviewer: SpringrainDate: 2005-04-05
Reviewid: 118703Chapter: 1
Really good characterizations, and story in general.

Reviewer: kristineDate: 2005-04-05
Reviewid: 118702Chapter: 1
Great chapter! I was totally wrapped into it. You can feel the hate and the coldness from the Black family entirely. I hate how they manipulated Narcissa! You capture the family perfectly.

Reviewer: JulieDate: 2005-04-05
Reviewid: 118687Chapter: 1
Interesting story, very well written

Reviewer: Barbara the Wallpaper-erDate: 2005-04-05
Reviewid: 118684Chapter: 1
I never thought to have compassion or empathy for Narcissa Malfoy (nee Black).

Excellently written, clear characterization, logical follow through.

Reviewer: NarumiDate: 2005-04-05
Reviewid: 118683Chapter: 1
Wow, that's great. I've only ever read one other Narcissa fic that I liked this much, and since I can't even find it anymore, I guess that makes this one my favorite! This is wonderful, you should keep writing.

Reviewer: KatieDate: 2005-04-05
Reviewid: 118681Chapter: 1
Wow. Just wow. Excellent with a capital 'E'. I stopped when I saw the title, quickly passing it over as I went on my way to view other fics...but when I was done...something drew me to it. You absolutely MUST write some more about Narcissa, Bellatrix, and Andromeda. You have developed their characters so that the readers grow to be attached to them. The hardship of not being loved in the pureblood society, the fact that Lucius has cared for her and never will, and that beautiful story you invented about Nymphadora and Draco. Excellent. A mini Harry Potter book in itself.

*Katie*

Reviewer: Grace has VictoryDate: 2005-04-05
Reviewid: 118670Chapter: 1
This was chilling. I began feeling sympathetic to Narcissa and finished by hating her.

Reviewer: story645Date: 2005-04-05
Reviewid: 118665Chapter: 1
I love the reasoning behind Draco's name, and how it ties into the recurring conflict she has between being Cissy and being Narcissa Malfoy. I love the whole Bella like to play with sharp things and likes passion for the sake of passion, it makes sense. I loved how her mother and mother in law planned everything, and the tea pot scene was great, showed everything about the culture really cleanly. I loved the flashback and the wedding scene between Narcissa and Sirius, I just wanted her to run out of the tent, to scream and it was just a great family scene, and a great example of how she's being torn in two. Just great Narcissa monologue.

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