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for Call to Arms

10/7/2014 c18 2Nan of Ingleside
sorry for the delay! I literally *slurped* the last two chapters as soon as I found the littlest oasis of free time. and I have to say they both mae for a glorious read and I loved the difference between your own world in Toronto and the LMM universe on the Island. hank you, thank you for filling the holes in the story, from Ken's sitting point. it was obvious Rilla waited- but it was good to see his part in their whole letter exchange. they saw so little of each other that all that writing HAD TO mean a lot and you managed to capture that very smoothly.
it's interesting to see Owen's and Ken's battles. somehow I had this idea about Owen being a writer and hence more given to the idea of sacrifica patriotism and what not, but this read surprizingly well. and THANK YOU for all the little details. it made Toronto come to life so much.
but most of all- Persis, Persis! I loved everything about her- the little Japanese touches (do you know I always picture her in a kimono?), the kohl eyes, the hair, the pet name. she is just too precious and I loved her relationship to Ken. he knows she wouldn't take too much of Jem-style bossing around but he is still caring and protective. their digs made me laugh and giggle as always- oh, what do I say, you gotta love those Ford children.
can't wait for anoher update!
10/4/2014 c18 7DianaStorm09
This story reminds me of a nesting doll, as I uncover one unique chapter after another, and within each chapter, there are so many hidden little gems embedded.

In this chapter, I first and foremost love how you focused on Rilla for a bit- I know LMM did a lot of that in RoI, but what you have done here could have come right out of LMM’s pen. Those little details you reveal are just so touching; Anne passing on the precious box that once held Gilbert’s letters; the rather sad atmosphere at Ingleside where Gilbert lost his capacity for making Anne laugh; little Jim’s teething for which not even Morgan seems to be able to provide any ideas for an effective remedy; Susan wanting to plant sugar crops etc. My heart ached for Rilla when Susan- being Susan- spoke about the attrition rate of the officers at the front. Anne, of course, being the sensitive and loving mother Anne is, is piecing the pieces of the puzzle together for herself, so very quietly, while resuming what she could do to help – fix Rilla’s knitting!

On to the Ford family; I think you wrote a wonderful interaction between father and son. You totally nailed Owen, and you did such a great job revealing the miscommunication and misperceptions father and son had. It was a very touching part of this chapter, but you then topped that by the interaction between Persis and Ken, I almost started crying along with Persis, a character so undeveloped in LMM’s work, and you are doing wonderful things with her, making me hope she will appear in future chapters as well. Thank you for another amazing chapter!
10/4/2014 c18 4Bertha Willis
This is just wonderfully tense, and the characters are so right on. I know you sometimes think you ramble, but there are so many perfect little expressive nuggets here. The "Mother never laughed anymore -and worse Father seemed to have lost the trick of knowing how to make her laugh" was a story in and of itself.
As for the Fords, you have given them such perfectly complex and fitting personalities. I hate that no one ever told Ken of his talent and made him think everything in his life had been just a favor, but it's so real and so possible for someone in a situation like that to have those feelings. And Persis is just a delight.
Can't wait to get back to Ingleside.
10/3/2014 c18 5JennWithAPenn
I simply sped right through this chapter; the dialogue was so captivating and clever. Sheesh! Ah, the butting of heads and the talk of passion. I swear, when Ken was talking about knowing now what he can give and finding the role he was meant to play... I got shivers, what a feeling. And an irresistible one at that. Thank you for giving him such a clear motive and drive for joining up-I, too, have grown to know and love him more. But as for loving Owen, well... I suppose I've caught him at a bad time. If you were having trouble writing the Owen/Ken scene, well... you pulled it off. Ken seems really grown up here-he knows what he wants and he stands up for it. No wonder a visit to Ingleside is coming up! That was a fantastic segue to what is to come and I'm glad you structured this chapter the way you did. Also, loved imagining Persis' short hair in my head... as I said before, scandalous! Thank you for all the Fords together at home, and for touching on how Rilla has changed over the past months (thank goodness for that). And I enjoyed so much the little bit about Rilla's letter box having been Anne's, and the contrast you made to the life of a boy and the life of a girl when war strikes; the path of one sex goes inevitably to the same place, whereas the path of the other forks into countless new possibilities. Alright then, off to Ingleside now, are we? It's not like I've been waiting ;)
10/3/2014 c18 19Alinyaalethia
This was a lovely chapter to read. Especially I liked that scene between brother and sister at the end. It's a grey October day here and I only had to look out the window to see what you are describing. The bird, the flowers, Prrsis running out shielded by Owen's coat, it was wonderful to read. And Owen himself, you wrote him spot on - he always was deeply feeling and you've captured the fire and the anguish I associate with him exactly.

And against all of that was the measured outlook of Ingleside, going determinedly onward as best it could and Rilla was uncertain but Anne more so - oh the terrible thing that is waiting like that and thank goodness there is Susan!
9/24/2014 c17 GoDons
That was me that talked about how different the Fords, Blythes and Merediths are from each other, Katherine. Sorry I didn't log in to review. Go Kenneth/Rilla! Cheers :D
9/24/2014 c17 Guest
Fantastic chapter. Lots of differences between the Fords and the Blythes and Merediths. Ken and his family are very worldly, unlike the aforementioned 2 families, but I suppose Toronto and P.E.I. are 2 different worlds, city vs country and all that. Love the little mentions of Rilla that you've slipped in here too. Keep it up. Bring on Chapter 18 :)
9/26/2014 c17 4Bertha Willis
I held off on reviewing this the second it was posted just like I said would. I enjoyed it every time I read it.
The characters are so vivid - much more so than in the book. Leslie fits perfectly as to how one would imagine her development after AHOD, and Persis, really more of a name than a character in any of the books, also seemed like she could have walked right out of the pages.
I especially enjoyed Ken's confusion/embarrassment/ excitement over his correspondence with Rilla, as well as the recollection of Jem's pearl necklace.
9/25/2014 c17 19Alinyaalethia
How wonderful to meet the Fords at last, or some of them anyway. It didn't feel at all like. Too much talk, it was all light and bright and sparkle but with plenty of shade to balance it. I love how you have written Ken and Persis here, how they tease and talk to each other, and equally I love how well you've done Leslie. You've given me a wonderful glimpse of her as she must have been once she was secured her portion of happiness, but not without a bit of a shadow. Of course she knew Ken was blushing, of course she could read him easily, and yet had the sense not to pester him about Rilla or how that had started.

As for getting them out of Ravenscroft, do you know, we still make an afternoon of going down to the King Edward for afternoon tea when I am home - I was tickled to see you had set the first half of the chapter there. I knew it even to the entrance Ken and Persis came and went through:) Well done on giving us the Fords, I am going to be sorry to have to part with them.
9/24/2014 c17 7DianaStorm09
Oh K., I simply loved this chapter. Where to start!? Persis, who enjoys life to its fullest, contrasts so nicely with her older brother, who must seem quite dull and boring to his sister now. While Persis correctly suspects that there's a certain reason to his sudden disinterest in the ladies of the Toronto upper society, I was secretly pleased that it was Leslie, not Persis, who was on the right track! Which brings me to my favorite part of this chapter! The interaction between Leslie and Ken is so beautiful, you write Leslie so well (she's one of my favorite characters in the AOGG universe). And as always, you don't disappoint artfully weaving in the small details, standing out in this chapter is the picture Salvo's Madonna con Bambino, a beautiful detail reminding of the moment when it became obvious to Ken in RoI that he loves Rilla. Thank you, thank you, thank you for this great chapter!
9/24/2014 c17 5JennWithAPenn
I was so happy to meet Persis and Leslie in this chapter! Let me start by reiterating my awe at how you can delve into so many different characters, and make them all so wonderfully developed and unique. Persis was deliciously scandalous, and I loved her. Their conversation together was very brother/sister-esque, what with the clever sibling banter. Your description of Persis as a cat waiting to pounce seemed absolutely fitting-and she provided great contrast between the Toronto society and that of PEI... I enjoyed seeing the way Rilla has changed Ken's views of Island life. Indeed, you've done a remarkable job of establishing Ken's previous reputation as a ladies' man, so to speak. He really changes as much as Rilla does, doesn't he? But my favorite here was the scene with Leslie... I ate it up. "Put down the paper dear, I know you're blushing..." But of course she does. My favorite line was about how talking with her was like sunshine and cloud gone to battle-what a perfect characterization of Leslie... I had to reread it multiple times, it was so good. I was completely gripped when they spoke of the war, it was like, WHAM, WHAM, WHAM, what with Ken's angst about them asking him to trade his rifle for a pen, and the difference between Jem going and Ken going, and of course, that last brilliant line, about convincing Owen of who he is, not who he wasn't. What a spectacular way to end the chapter, Katherine! And if you were wondering about all this war talk being interesting... well, you have certainly made it so.
9/24/2014 c16 2Nan of Ingleside
shoooooot, I never got the notification you posted. sorry for my tardiness!
I can't even find enough words to tell you how good this chapter was. you brought everything to a nice end, for me at least and for this point in the story. I think you've reached your primary aim of 'filling the blanks' in LMM's writing. I always felt her Ken had much potential that she didn't really realize. as for your own bits- it's all confusing and messy and complicated- and its life at its best. I loved how they instinctly got back to memories from childhood, even disturbing ones, in times like this. I'm painfully curious now how (or if) you'll explore Walter's change towards the war.
you've added so much to the story, to the characters, that I actually tend to think of the latter as your own rather than Maud's.
9/17/2014 c16 5JennWithAPenn
I'm not sure what else to say except that this was exquisitely beautiful, Katherine. It flowed like rolling hill or softly bubbling stream... of course there was no more fitting place for Ken/Walter's goodbye than Rainbow Valley, where their friendship had begun, and blossomed. And I just loved that lazy summer mood... and the timelessness of Rainbow Valley, which you established so well through references to old times spent there. I'm not quite sure how you've done it, Katherine... somehow you added in all the feeling and memory, and yet stitched it together with the dialogue so seamlessly that I am in awe... it was very natural and organic and just beautiful poetry. (I will always envy you for this beautiful little lines... what with the sun's tyrant eyes, and likely to squash, and diminished breezes not daring to stir a leaf, and white cotton bubbling over long, spiky fronds.)

The brotherly bond you have developed between these two boys is an incredible feat. And the way those feelings of Walter's keep teeming over into longing is very expertly done. Of course what tore most at me was your subtle comment about Walter being very much alive *shivers*... not to mention Ken's question about death, and also feeling like he may not see Walter again (kindred spirits just know, don't they?) Such wonderful, subtle, not-overstated closure (assuming that was indeed the last of it) between these two that has me in awe. And the lines of poetry at the end, written about Ken yet also for him in a way, put it all over the top.
9/17/2014 c16 4Bertha Willis
Aw, so bittersweet and conflicted. You write them both so well - their inner thoughts and outer showings. I loved the symmetry of how Walter looked Ken's first and last times to see him (though I always imagined they were the same age).
9/17/2014 c16 7DianaStorm09
This was so beautiful! I've read this chapter three times already and still can't even begin to express in my own limited vocabulary how much I admire your poetic writing and how beautifully you describe the relationship between Walter and Ken, from their childhood (is Ken really that much older he'd remember the infant Walter in his mother's arms though?) all the way to this moment, their last time together.

"Something had whispered in his heart [...] that he would never see his friend again" actually made me shiver and break my heart once again over losing Walter.

This is a masterpiece in my opinion. Thank you for sharing your amazing work with your readers - as always I'm very much looking forward to your next update which brings Kenneth Ford back to P.E.I.!
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