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for Through the Dark Clouds shining (English version)

11/28/2017 c3 10Excel Aunt
I think I'm going to love following this story of yours, not just because they feature some of my favorite characters, but it is teaching me as well. I don't know much about WW1. What I do know is based on Downton Abbey-and I wouldn't trust it for accuracy as I am trusting you.

I love the name, Constance Irene! I loved how Nan and Jerry are married. But I wonder if Jerry even as a picture of his daughter to look at. I hope that there will be.

And I also liked how you took so much time explaining the uniforms as a perfect lead into Rilla's, Betty's and Polly's commissions in a real army! I never knew!
11/28/2017 c3 14elizasky
You did a lot of excellent exposition in this chapter without ever making it too onerous. I'm sure you are brimming to tell us 1,000 things, but you showed good restraint here and just told us what we needed to know. It's always useful to have a character like Betty who doesn't know everything but is willing to ask. I did laugh at them spending so much time talking about the clothes, but at least I will be able to picture them very clearly from now on!

Since the nurses are officers, how are enlisted men supposed to interact with them? Do they salute them? Even patients? And are officers allowed to visit enlisted men in the hospital (Rilla going to see Jerry, though I guess I don't know his rank in this universe)?

I was glad to see Jerry as a lawyer here. I quite agree! He is good about details. The bit about Nan waiting too long was in-character as well — it is wonderfully human that those two always feel that they have all the time in the world, and you have given a clever explanation for why thy are still short on time even when they have four extra years. I loved the little bit about Nan and Di — practical Di nicknaming her niece and Nan not being too pleased. That's a fun dynamic between them. (I think we are in agreement about a lot of these characterizations — my Nan was not very pleased with Di naming their house either. And it was an Aster/Astor pun! Our universes must be next-door neighbors.)

I feel as though I am going into the rest of this story armed with lots of useful information now. Don't keep us waiting too long for the next chapter!
11/24/2017 c2 2Kim Blythe
Oh yeah, you are right, Rilla is just has stubborn as her mother were, was and is...

Going into nursing school, and staying there, and keeping up with all the bad and the good parts of it, to prove herself and her parents, that she could and that she can become a nurse !

And to prove them wrong as well, with them saying that she would probably be back home in December...

Jem and Faith are already married with two little kids, Ian and Sara ! Does that mean that Faith did not become a nurse and stayed home with the kids while Jem went off to war ?

Nan is married with Jerry as well ! Jerry is off too war and Nan is station at ?

Carl is sailling de seven seas with the Royal Navy !

Shirley is an engineer ! Somewhere in France !

What about Di ? And Una ?

But, the thing that most intrigued me, is knowing that Walter as become a priest ! I can't help but wonder if it was a calling from when he was young, or did he decided to become a priest, when he knew that he could never have Faith as a wife, and decided on celibacy and becoming a man of the church after that ?!

Oh, and another thing that I do wonder, what about Ken ? Rilla does not seem to be thinking about romance so much and she hasn't mention him or his name once during this chapter...

Again, I cannot thank you enough for having decided on translating your story in english !
11/24/2017 c1 Kim Blythe
What was my surprise when I was reading your review for Elizasky's story Dispatches tonight, with me going to click on your name to have the realisation that you have indeed started to translate your story Through the dark clouds shinning in english... ( You have no idea how disappointed I was to not be able to read this story in german, because I do not speak or read any german at all).

So, this is why I thank you and congratulate you for having made this move and this choice of deciding to translate from german to english !

And I also have to welcome you into doing something like this, writing in another language that is not your own (Hi, I am doing the same with my own story, and my first language is french), this is why I welcome you and admire you, because I know that writing in another language, it is not an easy thing to be doing !

Now, for an actual review of this very first english chapter of yours :

Wow, Rilla as a nurse, I would have never thought of something like this !

But, I do love to read stories that are different then the other stories !

And for this prologue, I do wonder, is it Walter that Rilla is watching being buried ?

Or Jem ?

Or Ken ?

Or any other one of the guys, men that she knows ?
11/21/2017 c2 18Alinyaalethia
Well I’ve bobbed up from podcasting and love Polly and Betty already. I’m struck at once by Rilla wanring to set herself apart from her sisters, it rings so true of a large fa i,y, and it’s a very Rilla reason for pursuing anything. I love what she says about the sea too, it gets in your blood, I think, so that you can’t do without it. I had yo laugh over elevators though. They’re paternoster lifts at this point in history, aren’t they? I can’t blame her wanting to avoid them. I was on one once, under duress. Never again!

I want very much to get to know these versions of Rilla’s siblings too. How did Walter end up Catholic, and a priest at that? I suits him though. I wonder, will you have him a Chaplain here is propper soldier? That must have taken a propper wrangling of conscience if it’s the latter, but I’d love yo find out.

Rilla on Children is still very much Rilla, I see. Some things are inviolate whatever the universe. It makes sense though that she’s lost her sense of romance by now -so had Anne at 21, albeit for different reasons. Speaking of which though, I did like the bit of parental conflict you gave us. Rilla is the Ingleside baby, naturally no one wanted yo tuck her, or subject her yo the trials and tribulations about nursing. But the girl that brought Jims up by hand absolutely would stick all of those out.

And I appreciate the humour you give these girls, their zest and colour. It keeps the story bright when it could so easily sink, like the Lusitania. Wonderful work.
11/21/2017 c2 Andrea1984
It's true: Walter is a catholic priest. No joke.

Cu

Andrea
11/20/2017 c2 14elizasky
This is fascinating. I've re-read a couple of times trying to pick up on all the details and clues about where everyone is in this 4 years universe. Of course Jem is a doctor - that makes sense. Faith must be chomping at the bit, stuck at home. And thank you for re-naming Jem & Faith's kids - I have rolled my eyes pretty hard at the canon Jem Jr. and Walter and am nodding in agreement with your choice to do better. Your description of Nan haunting the place with Jerry wounded was just right. I'm glad someone else thinks Shirley is an engineer (I confess I have him so in my notes as well). "Polite incomprehension" was delightful.

But hold on a minute. A priest! A CATHOLIC priest! There better be some explaining and I am looking forward to it. I can see Walter being dramatic enough to be seduced by the Church (and vows of celibacy appealing as a grand gesture of self-sacrifice). But if Anne and Gilbert were skeptical about Rilla becoming a nurse, I am dying to hear what they thought when Walter became a Catholic! (Secretly, I have always suspected that Anne would love incense and candles and Latin, even if the theology might not impress her.) Can we have a scene of Walter debating with John Meredith? Pretty please?

Now, to the big things. Betty and Polly: delightful. I was a little bit sad when they were so interested in boys because I was already planning to ship them, but I'll keep an eye on the situation. I loved that Betty was smoking - something I have to remind myself to put in this period. They both seem like jolly companions and I'm glad Rilla will have some friends in this.

At first, I was thinking that this Rilla was much more focused and confident than canon Rilla, and I was going to ask you how she got that way. In RoI, it's the war that makes her grow up - what's the backstory here? But then you got to the part about her staying in nursing school out of sheer stubbornness, and I thought "There's our girl." That's Rilla of the green hat and the raising-an-orphan-to-spite-everyone's-low-expectations. She does seem much less romantic, which is an interesting choice - I am intrigued to see where you take this new version of Rilla.

Surely those girls are fairly safe, 15 months after the Lusitania. They're in the sweet spot of U-Boat restrictions, aren't they?

Thanks for posting this and I look forward to more.
11/20/2017 c2 10Excel Aunt
You know, I have a feeling that Anne and Gilbert understand Rilla better than she's telling Betty and Polly. I think it's a very Gilbert thing to do to use some reverse psychology in getting Rilla to stay in nursing school. I think they also see Rilla's stubborn streak. I do like the fact that Rilla is not interested in 'catching a husband' or at least doing anything in the least resemblance to her sisters.

Does Kenneth Ford come into this later, I wonder?

I did raise my eyebrow at the suggestion that Walter became a Catholic priest. I suppose that was a joke right? I sort of love how you describe Shirley's reaction to these girls as 'polite incomprehension'. That was gold! I had a good laugh there.

Jerry's injuries as the motivator for Anne and Gilbert permission seems to be a bit suspect. I think it's more Rilla's realization and new resolve. I suppose I shall see! Looking forward to more!
11/17/2017 c1 Excel Aunt
doch! Ich will das buch leisen!

(So my German is so rusty I don't think I could do it even with Google's help, thank you for translating! I know you have been most dedicated to it!)
11/17/2017 c1 14elizasky
Yay! I'm so glad you decided to post this. Don't make any apologies for your English - this was lovely and you can pass off any unusual turns of phrase as style :)

I was immediately struck by your summary - the idea that this Rilla is looking for her place in the world, specifically in relation to her sisters. As in RoI, where she is thinking about how she can't be the clever or ambitious Blythe and is a bit adrift at the beginning of the story. I wonder if "sisters" might also extend a bit to include Faith and Una, as Rilla does think at one point that she does not enjoy being overshadowed by Faith.

I am intrigued by the 4 years and wonder whether you will do anything with the other characters to reflect that age difference. Four years older - are Jem and Faith married? Do they have a baby? Did Una's crush on Walter ever turn into anything? Are Nan and Jerry engaged? I don't know whether you will bother with any of the rest of them, but you've already got my mind racing. Maybe this is what happens during WWI in a world like LizzyEastwood's, where Anne and Gilbert get together a few years earlier.

The prologue is lovely. Of course, I am intrigued by the mystery of whose funeral this is, but I'm happy to make a list of guesses and wait. I thought the train was a nice touch - the movement reminding Rilla that the war doesn't stop for one death, no matter whose. I got chills thinking of the crosses. I spent some time today looking at photos of the Meuse-Argonne cemetery near Romagne from 1919 and the present day. The present-day photos are moving, but the 1919 ones with no trees and the crosses just in the middle of a blasted wasteland were horrific.

The other thing that struck me was the theme of connection. Rilla is comforted by the fact that the dead man is not alone and lingers on memories of being with him when he died. I will be watching to see how that theme develops.

Thank you for posting and I hope you will give us more soon! (Apologies for not being able to read the original.)
11/17/2017 c1 18Alinyaalethia
I'm so glad you've begun this. Already I want to know more. Immediately I'm struck by Rilla's observation about how death never looks the same. I've been thinking a bit about that in my own writing, this idea that you never grow used to it, because the whole point of the work is to prevent it. You capture that sense immediately, and it's a wonderful insight into this version of Rilla. As is that last line. Rilla of the book world was patriotic and optimistic and justified this war to the end. But how much harder to do that here when she's fighting the fight to, and battling her own demons? I'm so looking forward to seeing where you head with this.
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