- Harry Potter - The Real Folk Blues by Lady Jaida - One of the things that impresses me so much about Lady Jaida's writing is that she's able to set these tones (or maybe 'moods' is a better word...?) to her stories that manage to not only be not pretentious, but actually damn good. Not a lot of authors could make me impressed by a Sirius-in-Azkaban fic, but this one very much did the job. (I don't think there were any majory Sirius+Remus hints....)
- Harry Potter - The Only Thing We Have to Fear by VoxMaille - Amanda pointed this one out to me, as a nice little gen Harry Potter fic (Who knew such a mythical creature actually existed in this day and age?) that was just... nice. I knew right from the author's notes that I was going to like this author a lot, and the story didn't disappoint. It's another example of the embodiment of why I keep going back to Harry Potter fic--lovely, charming characters put into quietly touching situations, written in a wonderfully warm style, that makes you ache for the characters and the troubles they've seen. (No warnings.)
- Harry Potter - That Something Else is More Important by VoxMaille - As is my general MO, let me get what I didn't care for out of the way before I get on to why I loved the story--a few of the events that happened in this story felt like we'd skipped a scene, suddenly Harry and company were hot on the trail of this scroll and I felt like I'd missed why they were after it, or suddenly two characters would have at each other's throats for a reason I didn't quite follow. And while I'm really not crazy about the Ron/Hermione vibes in the story, they're beautifully played and if I were more inclined towards the pairing, I'd have enjoyed the hell out of them.
Okay, right. I really liked this story because it was genuinely intriguing and well-written and it's not often that a story focused on Harry and his friends that can keep my attention; I tend to be more of a Marauders fangirl. The scenes were genuinely touching and charming and all three characters were given a strong roll in the story, it wasn't just focused on a single aspect of the trio or their friendship. The rest of the Hogwarts cast was used nicely when interacting with the three of them, and the whole story really captured the feel of the books. (No real warnings.)
- Harry Potter - Beyond the Veil by Helene - (Note: Spoilers, of course, for the Order of the Phoenix book.) I just... I don't even know where to begin with this story. I normally have trouble reading anything that's longer than 35k, but I could not put this 300k+ story down from the moment I started reading it, it left me breathless and on the edge of my seat the entire time. There are so many wonderful little things about the story and I wish I could give this story a proper rec because... this is sort of the defining 'dream fic' that I'd been searching for, the one that fixed what I wanted to be fixed, but did so in a believable and utterly amazingly well-done way. I imagine most people who are looking for a post-OotP story that 'fixes' the even events of said book have already read this story, but it took me awhile to get around to it and I'm kind of sad that it took me this long. I really can't express the sort of... desperate craving that this story fulfilled, that I finally found that one perfect fic I'd been craving so badly. And I harp on this a lot in the review because that's what utterly sent me over the moon--that this is what I wanted.
And what that was? An extremely well-plotted and believable and logical 'fix it' for Sirius' death, a way to get him back in a way that I could buy. Everything felt like it was possible, like the magics used fit with the Harry Potter world, the little details of various artifacts or grains of knowledge that are from the HP background coming into play and being used in a way that made sense, that everything just... came together. It felt natural. I can't sparkle madly about that enough. (Hence why this is quite the long rec. My apologies for the over-fangirling here. ~___~) And, oh, man, the characterization. It wasn't just cut and dry plotting of various bits of magic and 'world building', there was so much emotion packed into the scenes, even little touches of humor, so that I was caught up in the whirlwind of what was happening with the characters, that I felt their ups and downs right along with them.
The dialogue and little bits of insight you see whenever a scene was written from a certain character's POV was just wonderful--Remus understanding things that most people don't get and the way Harry is slowly starting to learn to open his eyes as well; the scenes with Snape in the fic were some of the best for that. The way any given character reacted to him was fascinating to watch, because it explained so much about their characters. And they were all three-dimensional here, all working with their own motivations and issues and, gaaaah, this story got to the heart of what I'd been wanting authors to play with, the dynamics between Sirius, Remus, and Harry (with a little bit of Snape thrown in there) and... I flutter. And gush. My apologies if I got your shoes all wet over it. *wry* (Sirius/Remus, post-OotP, but is worth reading even aside from the pairing.)
- Harry Potter - The Uncle by Sam Vimes - Considering all the angst fic there is for HP out there, sometimes it's nice to have something that's just... silly and makes me giggle and brightens my day a little to read. And that's what this fic is--utterly on crack and working just delightfully for that. Delightful. Yes, that's the word to describe it, I think. Plus, you know. Funny. Hysterical, really. I just... I don't even know if I could describe the concept, it's something that simply must be read and giggled over. Fortunately, the parts are short, so it goes really fast and it's just one of those things that's really low-stress and relaxing. (A little Sirius/Remus, but it's not really the point.)
- Harry Potter/Tsubasa RESERVoir Chronicle - And Then There Were Two by Shi-Lin - Speaking of stories that shouldn't have worked... Harry Potter and Tsubasa. It shouldn't have worked and yet... Shi-Lin took the right track with the story, making it mostly sweet/cute, but with touches of seriouesness here and there. What she got out of it was something that melted together shockingly well, but also was a genuinely GOOD story that left me with just the right feelings. After reading this, I wanted to give all of them hugs (especially Syaoran and Remus), I had the best WAFFy feelings, but without it being too sugary. Plus, all those little details of the culture clash? Of Sirius and Remus' friendship? Of the idea of Syaoran going home to tell Sakura-hime stories about his time at Hogwarts? Eeeeee, SO GOOD. I still can't believe how wonderfully the two series went together. (Faint Sirius/Remus, if you're looking for it.)
- XXXholic/Harry Potter - A Fair and Reasonable Price by Meg - I know, I know, I didn't use to like crossovers so much, but XXXholic is one of those series that I just can't work up even a vague feeling of guilt about liking it crossed over so much. Part of that is just that it works so damn well and part of it is because of stories like these, where Meg writes it so damned well. I mean, the little details are brilliantly done, from Draco's first approach to Yuuko's shop to the way Watanuki reacts to the language barrier to the way Yuuko is just So. Fabulously. Yuuko. to Snape's description of Yuuko to the breath-taking ending. I love the note this ends on, it's a perfect place to end such a story, I don't think it could have ended any other way, and Meg's Yuuko is just... she's perfect, utterly perfect here. I cannot flap and squee and flail madly enough over this.
And I still think she should write Eriol-goes-to-Hogwarts. No matter what you think of crossovers, read this one. (No warnings/pairings.)
- Harry Potter/XXXholic - The Garden of Persephone by Meg - [Note: This is a sequel to this fic, which should be read first.] Seriously, it's amazing how well Harry Potter and XXXholic blend together in Meg's hands, especially the way this story has this... this darker tone to the writing without being all DAAAAAAAARK or over the top emo wangsty. Meg does brilliantly with Draco's character, especially in the way he interactions with Yuuko and then has to go back to his own world and there are all these fabulous little touches, the way Snape's words are almost vague or the bit about the snakes and what Yuuko says about them and the little touch with the Bible and then there's the fabulous climax of the story that's just... all right right notes it needed. When Draco realizes what it is that he's gotten, it's an incredible moment. So much love for Meg. ♥ (No warnings/pairings.)
- Cardcaptor Sakura/Harry Potter - Hogwarts, A Life by Meg - I probably should stick this in with the other drabbles and shortfics, but, feh. It's so sparkly neato keen cool that I have to rec it properly! Because it's Clow at Hogwarts and Dumbledore and the way Clow would have fit in with such a school and it's packed with all these lovely little details that just mesh the two worlds brilliantly and there's a reason everyone screams at Meg for more and goes all sparkly-eyed over it. Plus, omg, I loved the detail about Clow's purebloodedness, it was just absolutely perfect for the surprising... complexity of the HPverse. So much cool in this fic. ♥ (No warnings/pairings.)
- Harry Potter/Naruto - A Matter of Perspective - A Total Write-Off - Birds of a Feather - Echoes of Self - The Future of Fate/A Servant's Love - Unstoppable meets Unbreakable by muffytaj - [Note: I'm probably getting the order for these fics entirely wrong, but I don't think it matters too much what order you read them in.] I was in the middle of a conversation with aki_omoi and we were exchanging links and somehow one or the other of us stumbled over this series of Harry Potter/Naruto crossovers fics that are brilliant beyond the telling of them. I started out with "Unstoppable meets Unbreakable", where Gai interacts with Snape and I was stunned by the perfect, brilliant hilarity of it. You'd think it'd be a weird mix or that it would fall a little flat or just something, but, no, it was perfect. It fit and the meshing of the two world was somehow utterly seamless. The connections with each scene make beautiful sense, they're not just random match-ups, there's a reason for them, the writing and dialogue and characterization are brilliant, and, god, Hagrid with Kyuubi in "A Matter of Perspective", asdlfkjadlfjkalsdjf, beautiful. But they're all beautiful in their own way, really. ♥ (No real warnings/pairings.)
- Marvel Universe/Harry Potter - Physical Education by Adrian Tullberg - Okay. Deadpool at Hogwards. By Adrian Tullberg. I was pretty sure I was going to like this. Then I got to, "Hi ho subjects of torture! I'm Wade Wilson, your gym coach, or as you freaks from England call it; your ...” he held up his fingers in a quote gesture "... Pee-Eee Teacher. You can call me Mr. Wilson, Deadpool, or 'Not the Face! Not the Face!'" before I started that wheezing laughter thing that all Deadpool fic should inspire. The first part is just all sorts of mayhem and genius. The second is... just... wheezing laughter. That's all I got. Deadpool actually comes across in text form, this fic absolutely does the character justice. So much brilliance here. (No real warnings, aside from what Deadpool brings to the table just on his own.)