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Dumbledore's Army
Review(s): 31

Reviewer: RPFDate: 2005-07-11
Reviewid: 126790Chapter: 6
Ah, this is a very original and wonderful story! I love how you describe music, you obviously know what you're talking about! I played the Rapsody in Blue last year with my winds and drums orchestra (I'm a trumpet player) and it is a very cheerful piece. We working very hard on it and after we played it at the concert, we were "horribly pleased with ourselves" too... Your writing is great, and it brings back memories I'm very fond of! ;)

Reviewer: YlimeDate: 2005-06-25
Reviewid: 125178Chapter: 6
I loved this. I've read so few McGonagall fics, and I asked on SQ for some, and was directed to this - and boy, am I glad I was! You've really got the "voice" of a younger McGonagall right, and her romance with Theron is really lovely. I thought your characterisation of Dumbledore was brilliant, really - well, really Dumbledorish! You got him spot on. And I really enjoyed the storyline, the plot, as well.

Excellent! :)

Reviewer: BrigantiaDate: 2004-06-24
Reviewid: 88531Chapter: 6
A great story. The characters are very well rounded and very likable. Minerva and Theron are wonderful, but I particularly like your depiction of Dumbledore. His horror and anger at Grindelwald, and his feeling of responsibility for Iona and all his students, are so well drawn, while at the same time you haven't neglected his humor and quirkiness. His carrying his wife's picture into battle is a lovely detail.

In fact, you make great use of interesting details throughout, like the purple plaid door on Weathervane, and Madam Pomfrey using her favorite beater's name as her password. Your world has texture, and that makes it an enjoyable place to visit.

Reviewer: perkDate: 2004-05-02
Reviewid: 81027Chapter: 6
I really like Theron and have read the other stories about his relationship with Minerva. I would like to read even more about their relationship. Like when he was still alive.

Reviewer: Three Sickles ShortDate: 2003-11-19
Reviewid: 60544Chapter: 6
I don't know how I'd managed to miss this fic in my time at the Quill, and I'm really glad finally to have found it. I officially have a giant crush on Theron, and I've got a real soft spot for Maimonides as well. I love your Minerva; she has the tartness and stubbornness of the older Minerva that we know from canon, but she has a really sweet openness as well, and I'm looking forward (though with trepidation, of course) to seeing how she came to lose some of that openness.

This bit from Chapter 4 really hit me: I faced him and said in as sweet a voice as I could muster, “Theron. If I am uninformed, I cannot defend myself. And there will be times when no one is around to protect me but myself. If I don’t know what ‘danger’ it is that is threatening me, then I don’t know what to look for.” This line could have been Harry speaking to Professor Dumbledore in Book 5. How different would Harry's fifth year have gone if he'd had a chance to say something like that Dumbledore? I know this fic was pre-OotP, and the resonances are kind of spooky.

I think I'm hooked on your corner of the Potterverse. Off to read more of it!


Reviewer: elokinDate: 2003-11-09
Reviewid: 59517Chapter: 6
I was a little bit sceptical at the beginning of this story (with your characterization of young Minerva), but you have done an excellent job. It's nice to see for once someone who lets a young McGonagall be young, instead of making her an old McGonagall in young person's clothing (as so often happens with both MM and AD). Excellent job.

I'm off to read more of the world you have created.


Reviewer: Violet AzureDate: 2003-05-07
Reviewid: 31069Chapter: 6
[What year are you now, Riddle?” There was no rhyme or reason to it, but I had never quite trusted him…] Love the word-play: riddle, rhyme, reason.

Excellent ending, just a lovely story. Nice explanation about the lemon drops and great cameo appearances by Madam Pomphrey and Tom Riddle.

Reviewer: Violet AzureDate: 2003-05-07
Reviewid: 31068Chapter: 5
[formally ask me to walk with him on Sunday.] I love that quaint touch and it's a very real reflection of the times.

[Medea, stocking what we called the “robe-ripper” section – the one with all the novels with pictures of muscular young wizards with aptly placed (and quite thick) wands]. *snert* Love the innuendo. Clever phrasing on the "robe rippers."

Nice pacing and dialogue. Sad to see this fic is nearly at an end, but it looks like it's leading up to quite a climax.

Reviewer: Violet AzureDate: 2003-04-26
Reviewid: 29589Chapter: 4
[And at the end of the class, with Professor Dumbledore’s permission, I changed everyone’s quill into a sugar quill.] That was a really sweet touch for an end of the year lesson. Very Dumbledore.

The Grindewald encounter- *shudder*

Minerva's first kiss-Woo-hoo! Love the surprise attack of it and Minerva's awkwardness and Theron's "you're thinking about what you're supposed to do, right?". So sweet and I just love the chasteness and innocense of it all. [All thoughts of scientific diagrams showing where noses were supposed to go left my head as I reached up carefully and kissed him.] A perfect ending. Very curious to know more about what exactly Grindewald is doing with the children.

Reviewer: WynneDate: 2003-04-04
Reviewid: 26158Chapter: 6
I can't tell you how marvelous this was to read--I swooned so many times for Theron I can't count! What a lovely character... exactly the kind of fellow a girl wants to meet; warm, caring, passionate, interesting, and not at all patronizing. He was neither a simpering oversensitive child nor an overmuscled buffoon nor a brainless cad. I adored your Minerva as well... so nice to see a heroine that comes across as human, endearing, and vulnerable, yet not a weakling. She was at once feminine, intelligent, and tough. I was especially pleased to note that neither main character was traditionally attractive. This was really a story about a whirlwind romance, yet it never seemed out of place to me... it seemed like they were two people who were just quite in tune with one another and recognized it quickly. The feel of the fic put me in mind very much of a classic romance novel of the old English variety, except that the heroine didn't seem a helpless twit who needed to be saved from herself (as has sometimes been the case in things I've read). All the sweetness with none of the insult... positively scrumptious.

Reviewer: WizDate: 2003-03-27
Reviewid: 25464Chapter: 6
Excellent story, well deserving of it's Niffle at Fiction Alley. I enjoyed your rich portrait of Minerva. Theron Dumbledore is a wonderful OC, just the type of son the good professor would want. The addition of Tom Riddle in the infirmary was a nice touch.

Reviewer: Violet AzureDate: 2003-03-15
Reviewid: 24049Chapter: 3
[They flanked me; I simply walked. I did not like having an honor guard.] Interesting description, gives the walk a sense of importance and solumness, yet the discomfort and grimness of the walk comes across in those two sentences.

The budding relationship between Theron and Minerva is really quite sweet and tender. I liked how he kissed her on the forehead, tender, yet familiar and hopefully there'll be other kisses to read about!

Minerva's relationship with her brother is also well-done; love how she's the one trying to break up the stiff, pompous nature. And it was really cute how the two of them shared their feelings about their respective crushes with each other.

I also like how Dumbledore gently gets Minerva into teaching TRansfiguration. Very subtle and nice foreshadowing for future lessons.

Reviewer: Violet AzureDate: 2003-03-04
Reviewid: 22720Chapter: 2
Aww, so sweet with Minerva sleeping and wearing the cloak. Very innoscent young love, just lovely.

Medea is a sweet older sister, loved the mirror's comments. It's very refreshing to see Minerva all atwitter. You've written a mature, lovely young woman.

Love the Weathervane creative [purple plaid door *snort*; soooo Dumbledore!]

Oh! The "Uncle Angus" angle was so cute!!! [that nice young Gershwin fellow! And I love the idea of wizards playing jazz!)

Dumbledores stampading for cheesecake! Love it!

I feel like I'm in a Jane Austin novel. Delightful manners and a sweet, old-fashioned tone. Sigh. Theron is one fabulous OMC!!!

Reviewer: Violet AzureDate: 2003-03-04
Reviewid: 22718Chapter: 1
[Dumbledore's eyes sparkled; Theron's positively crackled.] Excellent description! Very interesting take on Minerva's life. I never would have thought of making her a classical musician, but it fits her very well.

[Would I come? That was like asking if grindylows liked water.] Ha! Very clever! I love magical expressions; they give the story such a sense of culture.

Oh, this is so romantic! A very sweet, well-fleshed out Minerva...pretty much an OC. Loooove Theron and the idea of the Dumbledore orchestra!

Reviewer: Siria BlackDate: 2003-02-14
Reviewid: 20270Chapter: 6
Wow, I loved this story! I read it all in one go - it definitely deserved to be niffled! My favourite aspect of your story was your characterisation of Minerva. The fact that she was a middle child was very appropriate, seeing as they tend to become such good negotiators and mediators.

I would never have imagined Minerva McGonagall as a musician - I'd love to know what happened to her that would change her from the, admittedly rather shy, young woman here, to the stiff, reserved figure that we see in canon. Although she is definitely a very different person, for example, her rather wicked sense of humour:

Professor Dumbledore said, “Excellent, Minerva. I am most indebted to you. By the by, Maimonides has Transfiguration tomorrow, and I’m sure he won’t mind serving as your, er, test subject.”

My dear brother’s face fell, and I grinned diabolically at him. “Of course he won’t.” included enough subtle hints about her personality to ensure that she doesn't become OOC. It's definitely more of a progression from young woman to mature professor. For example:

Etiquette was firm ground for me. I was grateful for that

That is definitely canon!McGonagall. All stiff upper lip and British reserve. There is a ruthlessness to her as well - as in asking Maimonides to spy on his girlfriend. I know that it might be necessary, but it is still something that leaves a nasty taste in your mouth.

Albus' portrayal was lovely as well, and very in keeping with canon. The idea of Grindelwald attacking children was so truly frightening that I have no trouble at all in understanding the crushing sense of guilt which he feels. This bit, however, was truly inspired:

She said, “Oh, my,” and immediately disappeared into her stockroom, calling over her shoulder, “Minerva, stick him on the nearest bed.” I did so. She bustled back out, holding a small tin.

Incredulous, I said, “Are those – ”

“Lemon drops. Yes. I’ve been doing research – ”

“With assistance from Theron,” Professor Dumbledore added with a soft grunt of pain.

“ – and it seems that these help the aftereffects of the new Cruciatus much like chocolate helps with the aftereffects of exposure to Dementors.” She extracted one from the tin and said, “Open up, Professor.” He obeyed, and she stuck a lemon drop on his tongue. After a few seconds, he relaxed and was able to stretch.

I will never be able to read that part in the books again without grinning broadly! A wonderful story all round.


Reviewer: Altaria VolanteDate: 2003-02-14
Reviewid: 20174Chapter: 6
That was absolutely beautiful. That is the most complete and sucessful characterization of Minerva that I've read. Absolutely fantastic.

Reviewer: sandra (aka magpie poet)Date: 2003-02-06
Reviewid: 19273Chapter: 6
uhm, what to say? *pauses* i'll stick to the simple and uncouth. this totally rocked! to my great shame, I don't care for the lord peter mysteries so missed those touches, and though I like classical and adore bach I'm not particularly familiar with scarlatti. oh, and extra points for having a bosch painting at hogwarts. how about adding breugl's fall of icarus?

Reviewer: sandra (aka magpie poet)Date: 2003-02-06
Reviewid: 19269Chapter: 1
found this at the nifflers on fictionalley and boy am i glad i did. you already developed the characters simply but well, keeping well within what we know from the books but creating an excellent world. and on a random note i have to say that i love the names. though i think having an older sister named medea would scare me ;)

Reviewer: Ariana DeralteDate: 2003-01-31
Reviewid: 18462Chapter: 6
And I've visited that tea shop...Well, I must say I was enthralled. This has been one of the few romantic stories I've ever enjoyed. I loved the way you portrayed everyone, particuarly Theron and Minerva's younger brother. Your take on Grindelwald was brilliant and refreshing. I liked your little hints about Riddle as well, especially the way he looked at the Dumbledore's little family reunion. The bit about the lemon drops was cute as well.
Thank you for the wonderful read. Cheers:)

Reviewer: Ariana DeralteDate: 2003-01-30
Reviewid: 18438Chapter: 1
I was grinning broadly by the time I got half way through this chapter. This story has a certain charm of an old fashioned love story combined with a winning heroine and an interesting love interest. I liked the little emphasis on music and the hints of Grindelwald. A host of Dumbledore's playing music is an amusing image.

Reviewer: Mikau A. KaiouseiDate: 2003-01-19
Reviewid: 16909Chapter: 4
This is an amazing fanfic...I _love_ the Dumbledore door! Plaid is so cool! And Minerva is one of my favorite characters...This is a very wonderful story. If I were any good at spotting errors, I'd critique them, but I'm not...

Reviewer: GreenLilyDate: 2003-01-15
Reviewid: 16326Chapter: 1
That was a very beatifully told story. Your writing is absolutely seamless and the characterizations of Albus, Minerva, and Theron are very three-dimensional. I felt a little choked up when Theron described the things Grindenwald was doing to children.

Reviewer: Hermione @ HeartDate: 2002-12-07
Reviewid: 11690Chapter: 2
Wow! I'm not one for Minerva stories, but I really like this one. Poor Theron, dealing with Iona. That's so sad. I read a Sprig of Lilac before this, though, which was stupid, and it's so sad to know what is going to happen. I really like this young version of Minerva, too. She's like a teen, but in a Professor-McGonagall-ish way! Good story!

Reviewer: JKDate: 2002-10-16
Reviewid: 6438Chapter: 6
Nice work integrating Tom Riddle into the fic, even if he did make me want to yell and scream at him. (Which would have earned me some *very* strange looks indeed!) Nice original portrayal of how Albus defeated Grindelwald. I lvoe your theories and ideas, too, such as the new Cruciatus and the taking of children. I mean, they're horrible things to happen, but we're talking about Dark wizards here. Not nice people. *Shivers*

And Minerva and Theron got engaged. YAAAAAAAYYYY! And I lvoed Albus's response when they "told" him! You've got to love that man!

Fantastic fic. Very well written, with great characters.

Yours in fanfiction,


Reviewer: JKDate: 2002-10-16
Reviewid: 6437Chapter: 5
Okay, I know this is random, but I just have to say - blue paisleys? *Sigh*

Seriously, I love this chapter. (Seeing a pattern here?) The interaction between Minerva and Theron feels extremely real. I love it. I'm also enjoying the darkness the fic is beginning to spiral into. I mean, those were dark times, adn you're showing that, rather than avoiding it. Well done. But it's scary for Hogwarts and made me quite worried as I read.

And now, for the final review.

Yours in fanfiction,


Reviewer: JKDate: 2002-10-16
Reviewid: 6436Chapter: 4
I lvoe how they're falling in love. Well,w hat's not to love about this chapter? A Malfoy connection (down with the Malfoys); Albus being supportive, kind and generally jsut plain great with his students; Minerva teaching (and she is one KEWL teacher); and, well Theron. That last scene is incredibly touching. Poor, poor Minerva. And of course, poor Theron. But at least now he had something to live for.

*Hugs Theron*

Yours in fanfiction,


Reviewer: JKDate: 2002-10-16
Reviewid: 6435Chapter: 3

I apologise both for the lateness and quality of these reviews. I wanted to read your fic so badly I printed it off rather than reading it at the computer. As a result, I didn't write the blow-by-blow reviews I usually do. However, I was greatly entertained. I love Minerva. You make it so incredibly easy to identify with her. I suppose in a way she's very like me. I'm a bookworm and I play flute, so I'm rather like her, especially because the way I am stops me fitting in perfectly. Because of that, I can identify with and feel for Minvera. I love your characterisation.

All your OCs are amazingly KEWL, too. Especially (as I already noted) Theron and Maimonides. I want Theron, dangit!


Yours in fanfiction,


Reviewer: JKDate: 2002-09-29
Reviewid: 4969Chapter: 2

Oh, I feel for poor Minerva. You write her shyness and disbelief at teh fact that Theron wants anything to do with her so well. And Theron - Theron just ROX. He's so sweet.

I adore the whole idea of a Dumbledore family orchestra. I've neevr seent eh concept before, but it's just so *right*, given Albus's love of music.

Speaking of Albus, he was very believable. I never thought before of what effect a student's death or torture would have on him, but he's such a caring man it would have to make him feel terrible.

What a great story. It's a fantastic combination of thought-provoking ideas and sheer AWW factor.

Yours in fanfiction,


Reviewer: JKDate: 2002-09-29
Reviewid: 4968Chapter: 1

Well, I've heard so much about Theron, and I have to say I agree with it. I love the guy already.

You have a wonderful, descriptive writing style that is a joy to read. I love the way you get inside young Minerva's head. I love the way you're showing us her life; it's something we don't hear nearly enough about in fan fiction, esoecially seeing as how I love that period of history.

I love how sweet Minerva is and how shy she is also. And the references to the darkness that is Grindelwald (my only problem so far is a bit of inconsistency as to how his name is spelt), which makes a nice balance with the sweetness of the Minerva/Theron side of things.

And I love that you've made it be music that allowed her to meet Theron. I love music, and I love seeing it take a good place in fan fiction.

How many times can I say "I love" in one review? ;-)

Great work, Sweeney.

Yours in fanfiction,


Reviewer: Megan LucasDate: 2002-08-11
Reviewid: 1649Chapter: 1
Oooh, I love this! McGonagall rules, and this is one of the very few stories I've seen about her younger days. And Theron Dumbledore is really cool--why can't I meet guys like that? ;) Excuse me, I must go and read the rest of this story. So far, I adore it.

Reviewer: SilvertongueDate: 2002-08-10
Reviewid: 1578Chapter: 6
This view of a young, yet undeniably and familiarly solid McGonagall is positively wonderful. You've created a world that is new and incredibly refreshing, but pleasantly familiar all the same, even in its eerie darkness. (Tom Riddle and Grindlewald, oh my. It's hard to find fanfiction that properly, and *believably*, portrays that time. Needless to say, yours was a remarkable accomplishment.) Watching young Minerva and Theron dance around each other was thrilling, and your grasp of the Dumbledores is smooth and strikingly well done. Theron is so beautifully charismatic, as is his father, and your depiction of Minerva's family is possibly the best I have seen. In fact, all characters -- well-known and original -- were remarkably portrayed. Beautiful, *beautiful* characterizations all around.

Thank you for such a wonderful story!

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