Friday, June 26, 2009

"A Life Extraordinary" by LolaShoes

This week's Perv Pack Recommendation is...

Title: "A Life Extraordinary"
Author: lolashoes
Chapters: 43
Words: 300,118
Reviews: 5230
Summary: Sequel to Let Your Light Shine. A lemontastic look at their relationships and their lives together. All of the "what happens after" story. Canon Pairings. Graphic lemons. Vampire ExB

Guest Reviewer - Kassiah
Can I start off by just saying that I squeed all over myself when I was asked to be a guest reviewer for PPSS? When I was told what they wanted me to review, well, the first thing I thought was “I can’t do this fic justice.” And I can’t, but I am certainly going to try my best to explain the phenomenon that is A Life Extraordinary.

A few weeks ago, I was being all emo when practically every story that I read was in major heartfail. I sent out a cry for help on twitter, asking for fluffy fun that would take me from the depths of despair. Algonquinrt suggested that I read Let Your Light Shine, so I did. Even though I read very few vamp fics, I just could not stop. LYLS, the prequel to A Life Extraordinary, starts out from the moment Bella and Edward are in the water on their honeymoon night and takes us through Edward changing her, making her dreams come true and ensuring their eternity together. ALE picks up right after LYLS ends, giving readers everything that many of us wish Breaking Dawn would have been.

I love this story for so many reasons. Obviously, the plot is incredible. No one tells a story like LolaShoes. Her descriptions and the dialogue and the depth of her characterizations are just unparalleled. ALE is told predominately through Bella’s perspective, but Lola often weaves Edward’s take on things throughout the story and even little bits of Tanya’s and Jasper’s points of view in the outtakes. The story is lemony delicious in the best kind of way. I love that Edward and Bella are both strong characters in their own right, but are strengthened immeasurably not only by being together but by recognizing that fact and working to embrace it. Not to mention that by offering deleted and extra scenes, tons of info on her thread and profile page, and for her witty fuckawesomeness in general, LolaShoes is one of the finest authors in the fandom.

A Life Extraordinary begins with Bella recounting the process of her transformation, including how Edward's presence throughout the ordeal allowed her to keep a grip on her sanity. We learn about Bella’s special power, have interactions with Tanya, Jacob, and Aro, gain knowledge about Jasper’s ties with Bella, and see the Cullens function as a family. Bella freezer cooks for Charlie, plays silly games with Emmett, and tries to rein in Alice and her shopping trips. We find out more about the other family members’ pasts and what they want to do in the future. Really, it’s everything that we want with no insane and crazy plot devices that make no sense to us as readers.

Then there are the ridiculously-amazing hot lemons.

My BFF asked me to tell her about ALE, and honestly I said that it is like a (at the time) 41 chapter lemon. Edward in love and not brooding is fuckhot and he cannot be contained. They need each other, all the time. They have role play and fantasy fulfillment and mighty vampire thrusting power. Oh, and love days. Trust, you will not be disappointed in the schmexin’.
One of my absolute favorite things is that throughout the story, we see the love and sheer dependence that Edward and Bella have for each other. They truly complete one another and are deeply, madly in love. They can’t keep their hands off each other and often spend hours talking with their lips pressed together. They make a rule that from midnight to six am, they will have time just for themselves as a couple, and though it provides the timeframe for some of their hottest schmexin’, it also is the time that they share some of their most tender moments. Bella and Edward make it a point to work on and develop their relationship and talk about important issues, even if one of them isn’t comfortable with whatever it is. I think this aspect of A Life Extraordinary is central: No matter what calamity is going on around them, Edward and Bella are first and foremost a solid couple committed to each other.

The number one thing that I think LolaShoes wants us to take away from this story is the power of relationships. Although it was hinted at in the actual books, there was no explanation for or really any development of the reasons behind their relationships. Lola shows us that even before her transformation in LYLS, Bella is an integral part of the Cullen clan. She not only is Edward’s long-awaited mate, but also fulfills the needed roles of daughter, sister, and best friend. She offers a sense of completion to their family that no one before her was able to do. In addition, she allows the other members’ relationships to strengthen as well since they aren’t holding back for Edward’s sake.

So I guess that what I really want to say is that A Life Extraordinary is a story that everyone should read. No matter what you look for in a good story, ALE has it all. It is absolute complete and total win

Bri- So, I waited to start this lovely fic until the Monday before our review was due. As I type this, I still don't know if I will be done in time. :) Even so, I couldn't start ALE without first reading Let Your Light Shine, the prequel to ALE. Since it's not the story we're reviewing, I'm going to just say a few short words about it and be done. READ IT NOW. Before ALE, go and read their honeymoon through Lola's eyes. It was beautifully written and the change scene was THE BEST I have ever read. It's what I had hoped SM would have done.

Now, onto ALE! The first chapters of this are so well thought out. The small details Lola put in (hello, the air has a shape?) to the struggle that Bella felt waking up as a newborn - totally realistic and believable. The way she has taken the storyline is unique and original. Bella's gift brings a unique challenge to the story and one that you can't help but be anxious to see unfold.

But, besides the wonderful relationship between B&E, we also get to see into the other main characters. But, not overly so... So many times in fics I wanna scream "JUST GET TO THE MAIN CHARACTERS ALREADY!" But, in ALE, she does a beautiful balance between everything. It also helps that there is a purpose when the others show up and it provides excellent comic relief.

Now, onto the main event...the smut. My GOD the smut. She does such a wonderful job of balancing the sweet moments with a dash of the DTE we all lust after and love. Chapter 10? Fuuuuuuck me. No, seriously. Do it. (Where's my husband...or my rabbit??) I mean - what's so fucking hot about this? I dunno, but Lola got me all hot and bothered, that's for damn sure. Rawrrr.

I love how she has taken the characters we loved so much from the books and adapted them slightly. We get to hear Edward say naughty, naughty things - though not gratuitously, so as to get old. It's NEW every time it comes up. And, so, so welcome. ;)

I mean, hearing Canon Edward (gentleman 98% of the time) utter the words: “I look forward to devouring that sweet pussy from midnight to six.” I mean, are you kidding me with this shit?? *Bri melts into a puddle of goo* And, how she explains it in the fic - it just fits. It makes sense as to why he would be saying these things now - with Bella - and never before. Yes, even dirty talk she has a perfectly good explanation for. :)As I finish this up, I'm still not completed with the story, but can you imagine how long this review would have been if I was??

If you want a fun, smutterific look at what Breaking Dawn COULD have been, this is the story for you. 4.5/5 drenched panties from me.

Emmy- Well! I really don't quite know how to write just HOW much I enjoyed this tale.... As soon as I started reading it my breasts were heavy, my mind was racing and I was desperate for it to be the weekend so my git could be home... DESPERATE! I also couldn't believe that I hadn't been hit over the head with that breathy, realistic, fecking fuck-hot fabulous long, long, thorough delicious lemon tart before.... HOW? HOW? HOW? HOW? HOW?HOW?

So first off...Open up the link now in your browser... don't read it yet and then come back and read our fabulous reviews and then GO READ IT!!!! :)

Seriously. I think its safe to say that its 43 chapters full of lemony delights.. But it really is so much more... From the first chapter you think oh please do me this is hot and delicious, but you also quickly realise through your lust haze that its really so much more... These characters are rounded, genuine, superbly and realistically developed and the plot is subtle, thoughtful and layered lightly. The end result? A story that starts off with a light hold on you that a few chapters in has you in a very strong, firm, hard, desperate grasp.... I will not spoil Bella's gift - but its so much more believable and effective than the Bella's in Breaking Dawn..As is her connection to the Cullen's and her role within their family and their treatment of her..That is a particular strength of this story. Her emerging relations with her new family thanks to her no longer being a temptation to them, and how her skill affects and shapes this. Jake- the thorny issue of Jacob. In my eyes Lola deals with this in a far more superior and realistic manner than BD... (I actually *SHOCKHORROR* enjoyed reading about Jake and their interactions in Lola's epic creme da la creme of a tale...).

But oh the love, the love, the connection, the intimacy, the bond, the chemistry, the love, shitting hell the LOVE between Edward and Bella in this story, it made me teary, emotional and dreamy (and randy!).... We see Bella and Edward finally confronting their demons and fears and learning how to make a relationship with each other work.. Their insecurities based on their past actions and words being worked upon and explored.. All that was far too missing from BD for my liking - not here...Lola. Lola I would marry you (or at least give you a right royal honeymoon experience) alone for the Love Days. Seriously I worship you for those.. Your poised writing never made those twee, schmalzty or 'oh for the love of god shut-the-blazes-up we know your in love!' sick of them.. Instead they were tender, delicious, intense and oh so meaningful...

Now the lemons. Oh the lemons. Oh my giddy aunt the lemons. Oh my ruddy effing hell the lemons. OH THE LEMONS! Each one is to be cherished. Each is a work of art, a lesson in seduction and love. INCREDIBLE. Incredible in a dear god when the hell am I going to be able to get some from my git kind of way.. Where the fuck is he????!!!! They are epic in range and diversity.. Edward and Bella do EVERYTHING... I mean that. Hello back door - kill me now this is so intense and incredible a scene - sex. (that scene was done sooooooo well, unlike pretty much most of the stories that play in that er arena! snort!). They explore all their fantasies, venture into each others minds, bodies and souls.. Nothing is out of bounds. They use their strength and intensity and love to push all their previous boundaries and limits. To take each other to the brink, to hold it and then push each other over the edge. They enjoy it all and discover more of their bond and connection through their physical expression. Intensity and love and desire and passion abound in ever scene... Some are more intense than others. The kind of intense that burns and scorches from your tummy down and then back up again until your skin is tingling and deliciously alive... When I first was transfixed by the idea of a vampire and his mate - this is the kind of story I was secretly hoping to read... Their strengths, lack of sleep and incredible connection is fully exploited - yet its never enough yet its also everything either of them ever wished for and more - all at once. Its sensory overload, crushing emotions, flaming passion, deep deep love and intimate carnal knowledge and exploration.

I cannot praise this story or Lola's writing highly enough. I seriously cannot. I also expect my pony to send you flowers or champagne or something Lola to thank you for what you will inspire this weekend.. There will be ravaging and if I can walk by the end of I will not be a happy bunny... Its faultless - long, thick, beautiful, intense and thorough [ ;) ]. And so full of love it makes my heart feel special.

Deffo 5 out of 5 soaked lacy blue knickers from me for this and Lola

Jo- Lohhh-LA... LA-LA-LA-LA-Lo-oh-LA, LA-LA-LA-LA-Lohhh-La-ahhhh. Oh! be still my heart. *sigh* Yes, my heart has been forever taken this week by the wonderful and lovely Miss Lolashoes, my friends, as I am sure she can attest by my ridiculously fangirlish reviews that I've littered her inBOX with for the past two days.

So many delicious lemons, not enough panties in muh dresser to accommodate the constant puddle of goo I am in from this fic. I am literally CHEERLEADING NAKED for this story (insert mental image here). I wish there was a way to properly articulate the magic that Lola has put into this story, and what it does to me. I can't. It is complete and utter VOO-DOO. VOO-DOO I TELL YOU!

First off, as you will hear from nearly everyone else: Get the whole experience. Read LYLS first! You don't HAVE to, but it is Oh.So.Worth.It. Most definitely one of the best change scenes ever. OKAY! Now, on to ALE. I have one word for this fic: F U N ! ! ! Fucking Undeniable Nectar (of the Gods). I SERIOUSLY can NOT do this story justice, and if there is ONE thing that you take from my meager attempt at a review here, it should be this: READ IT!!! READ IT!!! READ IT!!! You will never be disappointed. Not Ever.

Lola has authored here what, in my opinion, should have been Breaking Dawn. Okay, I know. Farfetched comparing a 43 chapter long lemon to what a young-adult novel that disappointed so many should be? No. This story is SO MUCH MORE than just LEMONS! How she does this? I do not know, but she most certainly does. Like I said before, it is voo-doo. I'm convinced it is voo-doo, because nothing THIS lemony delicious could possibly have such an amazingly well thought out storyline, relationships, character development, profound moments, and most of all PURPOSE. Nothing that is, except for Lola's hoo-doo voo-doo that is ALE.

We get SO MUCH in this story! The change... it starts there (smack in the middle), and is so fucking beautiful I wanted to cry. The discoveries and re-learning process that Bella undergoes in her first days as a vampire are truly enthralling. Bella's power is unique and abstract, enticing and fun, and it is weaved delicately and intricately into the plotline of the story, keeping you guessing and consistently entertained. The characterizations in this fic are straight-laced, unassuming, un-cliche, and all have a purpose and a place in this story. The relationships are unique, and each one shows the familial bond that is one of the underlying themes of this story, as well as brings us originality, comic-relief, a deep connection to the characters, and meaningful direction to the tale. Bella and Edward are, for lack of a better word, insatiable. Actually, that word just barely touches the TIP (pun intended) of describing their relationship, completely inadequate. There ARE NO WORDS to describe their appetite for each other, only Lola can do that. But they are not only lovers, they are in love.

The don't just need sex, they need each other, like air. And they don't just have hot and steamy sexin' (of every fucking shape and form), they have profoundness and intimacy and discovery and love, above all love. Lola uses their bond as a plot development tool, yes, but she writes their love like no other, NO OTHER! I really do NOT know how she does this people! It's so fucking well done. I could go on for days, so I will stop here and say, please, please, PLEASE read this story! It is so very worth your time, and your love.

This story already ATE all the panties I've ever owned, and if your wearing any when you start reading this, well, that's just a dumb thing to do. So, panties? What panties? They're all in the wash right now.

Kathy- I believe I first heard about ALE from algonquinrt. When she described ALE&LYLS as “chapter after chapter of well-written lemons and plot,” I made a note to look into that. Who would turn that down?

I both was and wasn't surprised when I found the stories to be exactly as she described; algonquinrt has never let me down, but at the same time, who could write that much original smut and not have it get boring and/or repetitious after a while? The one and only LolaShoes can, that's who.

Now, lest you begin to think this story is SOLELY lemons, let me reveal that, as most stories do at some point, this story has made me cry. Bella and Edward aren't just mindlessly having sex all the time; there is a real and strong bond between them, and the ache and pull exists to draw them together. They aren't simply fuck buddies, they are bonded mates, and aside from that, like Kassiah said, Bella is a sister, a daughter, and best friend. This combination, plus the plot that is woven in (you thought she'd just write PWP? Hell no; this girl is talented... she... er... sucks you in with the smut, and then lays down the plot gently), will have you begging for more. Not just more smut, either -- more plot. The Aro moments? Astounding. Carlisle and Bella? Kleenex-worthy. The comraderie with Bella and Jasper? Wonderful. I could go on for Esme, Emmett and Rose, but you get the point, right?

I want to take a brief step back and say the the change scene in LYLS was absolutely beautiful. If you haven't read LYLS, go back and read it first. Then, come back and enjoy the smutty goodness that is ALE. Also, I have been known to warn people to limit themselves to 2-3 chapters of ALE per day. I had to put a cap on it, because really, how much time can you spend in bed all day? Just sayin'.

One of the things I want to be sure to mention about this story is that she takes into account all of the vamp characteristics they have; there's never recovery time required. Love Days? Genius.

This story gets 100/5 panties, because are you kidding? This has to be hands-down the best, most experimenty-fun-in-bed iteration of Bella and Edward I've read. Hands down (someone's pants).

Hope-Don’t Panic! I know this story is 350k+ words and the prequel “Let Your Light Shine” is 65k words. I know this seems like a massive undertaking to even attempt to read it all and the word count alone it daunting. But even though it is one of the longest stories in twific history, it’s a rather quick read. LYLS only took me two days and even though I am not completely done with ALE in 3 days I read over ¾ of it.

When a story gets this long people assume that the author is dragging it out or it has a lot of filler. This is completely NOT the case with “A Life Extraordinary”, every conversation, encounter, interaction & yes lemon (and there is a ton) is written with purpose and intent. Lola weaves a beautiful tale of what life could be like for Bella and Edward after her change. In my opinion is the best of the best of the “what happens after” genre.

What really gets me about this story and what I absolutely love; is that at the heart of it it’s about two people trying to figure out how to be together, about how to be married and sharing their life together, about testing limits and exploring boundaries and breaking a few in the process, about letting go and trusting your partner, about delving in and exploring the intensity and enormity of the feeling for your mate, about what it’s like to have and form a true partnership with honesty and openness.

Bella & Edward have a hard time adjusting to being married at first. Not in the sex department though, they have no problems there once they both surrender and let go. And trust me the lemons in this are some of the best around and I don’t know how Lola does it. Each one is new and exciting while remaining steamy and full of love. Even when Bella and Edward are just flat out fucking the love is there, surrounding them and spurring them on. The intensity or the way that Lola describes the intensity and sheer massiveness of their love and bond with each other in and out of the bedroom is stellar. I really do feel it, I feel what they are feeling and at times it’s overwhelming. And that is what makes this story great.

This is not just a Bella and Edward story, it’s also about Bella adjusting to life as a vampire and how her presence and addition to the family completes the Cullen’s. They all know and acknowledge it. They help her adjust to her new life without pushing or forcing. She forms a bond with each and affects each in her own different special way. All the Cullen’s are there and play major roles in the story. I personally love Jasper and Bella’s friendship, there is nothing romantic between them and it’s not a brother/sister vibe either. It’s a best friend, confidante, essential piece of their make-up kind of thing. It’s hard to describe but they need each other in a strictly loving but platonic way. It does have a bit to do with both of their gifts. I’m not going to spill Bella’s gift, you’ll just have to read, but is makes perfect and complete sense.

There’s love and romance and a bit of drama and growing pains and fluff and hijinks and pranks and fun and laughter and sex and tenderness and togetherness and it all weaves together beautifully to form an amazing story. A must read in my opinion.

I don’t have a panty count for this story. Simply go without and save yourself the laundry. It’s that fucking good.

Nina- I dedicate my review today to Siouxchef who betas this lemony beast of goodness. Girl, I don't know how the fuck you do it, but me and Lucy thank you.

I completely agree with everyone when they say to read LYLS first. The first two things I tell ANYONE that asks me about this fic is I have MsKathy to thank (hump) for it and the fucking 'change' scene is fantastic. Utterly and astoundingly fantastic. I read it again just before writing this because it's just that damn good. Sure you can argue that it's been done that way before but it's irrelevant because of Lola's ability to masterfully weave what could have been a truly cliched scene and instead created a magnificent and romantic scenario. Oh yeah, and she writes hella hot fucking smut (with a story)

That's what this is folks, it's a profoundly good story with smut, not smut with a splash of story. Yes, it is gloriously bountiful with citrus of EVERY MOTHER FUCKING VARIETY but there is a story and it's so good, dare I be silly and say it's extraordinary. I need to stop drinking I think, I'm ridiculous. Back to the point.

There are a few points that I really want to touch on as far as the story goes. Kathy mentioned the Love Days. Jesus Christ. Vampire love according to Lola is unreal. It's poetic, it's unabashed pleasure seeking from your true mate, it's remarkable and truly profound and it causes these crazy vamps to just be nekkid and fuck (with love). These 'days' are unbelievably well written, the pure unadulterated passion that they feel towards each other initally worries them because let's face it. They're literally not in control of their needs, they're just pulsing through them and setting them on fire with desire. Once the phenomenon is explained to them they realize how truly perfect for each other they are. There is no question about the magnitude of the love that they all share and here is where Lola does a remarkable job in creating different forms of lemonade. The sultry, smutty, hump the nearest thing in the vicinity kind of fucking and the ultra romantic, sweet, still hella sexy, but in a deep and emotional love making sort of way.

We all mentioned the actual plot to this tale, her ability is probably one of the best ones I've read in a while. Quite similar to Jasper's empathic power she's even more, at least to me, dangerous and wanted because of this trait. Enter Uncle Aro and the Volturi. I am terribly curious to see how the end of this story goes in relation to that part of the journey (and I hear there is a part 3 in the works...I hope that rumor is true!)

Okay, the smut...there is plenty of it and in varying forms, positions, entryways (wink wink) and role-playing but these are just two.

Now, being a teacher, certain teacher/student fics squick me out a bit, but schoolgirl fantasies? Yeah, I fucking love those. Holy mother of fuck. Mr. Cullen 'teaching Miss Swan how to give a blowjob? *dies* Miss Swan asking Mr. Cullen about taking a trip on the pink canal with the tongue boat? *thud* Un-fucking-real. I can't remember what chapter it's in (that's a lie it's in 39), towards the end I remember but just read it, so fucking hot.

Finally I would be remiss if I didn't talk about the butt secks. I'm not a fan of reading about it (usually), not sure why (Slash is always welcome, accepted and loved btw). That's not true, I do know why, if I ever see the words brown lower hole, puckered dirty hole or chocolate starfish again in a fanfic I'm going to go all Cuntzilla on whomever wrote it. (yes, those are 3 examples that I had the misfortune of reading) Lola, yeah, I'll read about her butt secks everyday (yes, please).

This is just MY OPINION. But (pun intended) butt secks to me, is dirty (in the good way) I accept and except, balls slapping, the man screaming about fucking a tight ass etc. Not, "Oh I filled your fucking lower, brown, puckered hole that resembles a chocolate starfish" fuck no ewwww.

Sorry mini rant (and 13 year olds shouldn't write fucking lemons or about butt secks *which is where those examples came from)

Okay my bad, back to the butt secks. Yes, it's hot. Yes, they both enjoy it and yes, she fucking writes it in a manner that makes my toes curl.

This story doesn't get a panty rating because frankly? If your panties made it through LYLS unscathed, they're NOT making it through ALE without exploding. So just sit on...well sit on anything that feels good and read this bitch. My suggestion is go shopping, get a few thick towels, some bottles of your favorite brand of spirits and a fresh supply of batteries and thank Lola in the morning.

Steph- I have a love day over Lola every time I get an update for this. Don't know what that means? Go fucking read ALE. Right now. Do not pass go, do not collect $200. Oh, but you should really read Let Your Light Shine first.

ALE is what BD should have been. Lola's description of Bella's change to how she adjusts to it all afterwards? GAH. And seeing the two of them together, working through it. Seeing Edward not only accept her change, but do it the way she wanted it done. Making, wait for it, the choice to do it. Not just doing it because he had to save her. I love that Lola took that choice and put it in their control and they did it together.

The love between Bella and Edward here is actually almost palpable. And you can sure as hell wrap yourself up in it and just savor it. What I hated most about BD was that there was virtually nothing of the love story between B/E. ALE has the love story in spades. It's a damn love-fest. All loving, all the time. And speaking of loving. Holy fuck, the lemons.

The whole story is lemony delicious and made me a randy little slut while I was reading it (not that the hubby minded at all). But what makes it sooooooooo good, is that it fits. Yes, there's a lot of lemon, but it furthers the story. There is a point to it for each and every time they make love or fuck, and they do their fair share of both. But, not only is it an epic Bella/Edward love story, but you get to see Bella with whole fam-damily.

You see her relationships with all of them grow and develop. I love Jasper. Nothing new there, but OMG, their relationship here? Makes me a fucking gooey mess. And dude, Emmett and Charlie bonding? Ya gotta see it to believe it, and you will love it.Then there's Bella's power. Probably one of the coolest powers I've read about Bella having. I loved watching her learn about it and slowly explore it, beginning to figure things out. And she's still learning new stuff, even as of the newest chapter, she got a new look at what her power can do.

Talk about an awwwwwww, overwhelming moment.I love this story hard. And I love Lola hard and want to do naughty things to her. (Shit, did I just say that out loud? Meh, oh well, it's true.) For this story, skip the panties, you won't be needing them for a very long time. Just get a towel and your favorite toy or favorite man (or woman if that's yer thing). And have fun with it.

5/5 midnight-blue, lace boy-shorts

In addition to our Round Table Review above, we've also asked the author to share a bit about herself...

I had a total ::assfloor:: moment when Nina told me that PPSS would feature ALE. The fact that I have to write a bio for you peeps is a little intimidating, though. I can write Edward easing Bella into ass sex, but the blurb about me? Not so simple.

I’m 34 and when I’m not writing vampie humps, I’m a neuroscientist. Super geeky, yes, but you can make a lab coat look hot with the right pair of kitten heels. I’m married to an awesome guy, and we have a shamelessly flirty 2 year old son. I know all married TwiFic authors say that they’re ‘married to their own Edward’ and while that’s really fucking cute, I’m stopping that noise right now. I’m pretty sure that Edward Cullen doesn’t exist and that’s why we read and write this stuff in the first place. My husband is a hot science geek but nothing like Edward. He shaves his head, for one. So the whole “fisting my hands in his thick hair” makes me really fucking jealous. Also, I’m sure that EC wouldn’t make a habit of leaving his socks all over the living room. Oh, and the mind-reading thing would come in pretty fucking useful sometimes. Other than that, my man is the shit.

Now, having said that, my beta, siouxchef, is unfortunately married but otherwise I would totally turn gay for her (or Rachel Maddow, rawr). I may anyway - just give me the word Trac.

I started writing fanfic for the same reason most of us did: I love the characters but felt that there was a lot more that could be done with them. For me specifically, I needed to see if I could write their relationship to make myself believe they were in love. We’d been beaten over the head with how beautiful Edward is and how klutzy Bella is, but there was too much drama in the books for us to ever really see how or (more importantly) why they loved each other.

Unfortunately, that connection is the foundation of everything and we had to just take it as truth scattered among epic battles and (more importantly) epic cockblockage. And after three books of sexual tension, I’m sorry – I had to fucking re-write Breaking Dawn. The fade-to-black in the water Mormon teen readers be damned: it killed me. I literally examined my page numbers to find out if my book was defective (hey, it happened to me with A Prayer for Owen Meany – it was possible here too). Then when I returned to it, Edward lost control? What? That did not fit at all for me with his character. Apparently I never got over that trauma and that’s what started Let Your Light Shine and its sequel, ALE.

I plan to continue this story when they start school in New Hampshire. (PM me if you live there – I’m fucking clueless about the Right Coast.) LYLS was about Bella’s change, ALE is about their realization that their love is obsessive and completely consuming. The sequel will explore the other relationships in the family as well. I could start another story… but fuck it, these horny vamps are fun.


Lola said...

Thanks so much everyone. I'm totally speechless and emo right now.

gkkmouse said...

Part of what makes ALE such a wonderful story is its complexity. This isn't just a Bella-Edward story, but knowing that this is why we're all reading, Lola gives us plenty to keep us happy. The additional family interactions and situations she inserts into each chapter rounds out the characters as PEOPLE and we can see many more sides to them that would otherwise be hidden. We had 4 books of Bella and Charlie and Bella and Renee... but we never saw Bella and the Cullens (outside of Edward, primarily, and Alice).

That's why the family dynamic is so incredible here: Esme's family photos, the Cullen's "Hall of Shame," their one-time pet... The gentle balance of family mayhem and family quality time (Rose painting Bella's toenails) is always present in all of Lola's stories. And I confess I'm a particularly partial to any author that plays the obvious vampire-joke card with the characters.

All of these interactions draw us into that beautiful house and this story in particular. We aren't just observers there. We're the ghosts in the rooms with them, listening to Bella teasing Edward or Emmett, hearing the family stories, watching them solve problems and go through their daily lives. Not only is Bella learning more about Edward and the rest of the Cullens... so are we! I don't think I could read SM's canon again without picturing this happily ever after.

I've been in fandom for a long time, and I simply do not understand the notion of television producers that once a couple gets together, the story is boring and irrelevant -- that once the "chase" is over, there's nothing left to tell. That is simply not the case! After the chase is over, there is a lot of living to be done. Lola has a particular knack for showing us that happily-ever-after can be just as interesting, sweet, thrilling and gripping as the story of courtship and consummation. Happily ever after does not mean FIN!

More than all of this, though, Lola always brings us back to the love story. I think what I love most about ALE (and LYLS) is the fact that both Bella and Edward are equally pathetically besotted with each other. Lola's love scenes are simply inspired. I'm constantly amazed that she has written more than eighty love scenes to date for LYLS and ALE, and each and every one is utterly unique, fresh, intense, loving and overpowering. Just when you think these two lovers have done just about all they can do, they still come together completely fresh as if they were both virgins again and again, and each time they learn more about each other, their love grows even more impossibly deep, and we, as always, stand in complete and utter awe.

violin3679 said...

I'm SO GLAD y'all got around to reviewing my Lola! I'm not going to delve deep into what all I love about this story, because the reviewers did a beautiful job, and gkkmouse said a mouthful, but I HAD to drop sweet Lola some love. This is my fucking favorite-drop-everydamnthing-and-read story. So multifaceted, so rich, so motherfucking sexy. The chapters are crazy long, but never, ever long enough. What I wouldn't give for just a portion of a love day with her Edward. Mmm. Love you, Lola!

heatherbanners said...

I know this is uber late...but I loved reading all your takes on this story. I have been a Lolaholic what seems like forever...and reread her stuff over and over again! All of your reviews are fanf*ckingtastic!