AquariumJenn's Rec of the Week: 2/28-3/6

March 01, 2011

Release by writingbabe
Review by AquariumJenn

Rating: M
Genre: Hurt/Comfort/Drama
Characters: Edward/Bella

Summary: Ten years after Edward and Alice abandoned her, Bella returns to Forks. What brings Alice to her door? Why has Edward moved into the Cullens' old house? And who gives Bella the punishment she craves? Inspired by Beyond the Pale Contest photo prompt #5.

I have to begin this review by confessing that Release was one of those stories that made its way onto my ‘To Be Read’ list where it sat for untouched for several weeks but only because I didn’t have the free time to begin the story. I had heard incredible word of mouth about it from other readers, so I took the plunge one evening and was immediately blown away. By the end of the first chapter, I was kicking myself for taking so long to start the journey.

This is now one of those fics that I drop everything for when an update alert hits and I’m hopeful it finds a bigger audience quickly. It is well-written with both a strong plot and strong character development. In my opinion, there is nothing lacking in this exceptional story and I will do my best not to reveal too much about the unfolding plot.

Initially drafted as a one shot in the ‘Beyond the Pale Contest’ (where it was winner of a judge’s Cherry Popper Award and the Best Use of Photo Prompt Award) the opening chapter strongly impacts the reader by introducing us to a Bella who mysteriously seeks punishment and a less than likeable Edward who appears to be at the heart of Bella’s issues. In short, I loved to hate Edward but also wanted to know more about him. When I finished reading the first chapter, I felt immediate relief that I had more updates to pursue. It was clear that there was so much more to this story than a one shot could portray and I’m thankful writingbabe took up the task to complete it.

One thing that amazes me about writingbabe’s characters is that they are all flawed individuals. I had a difficult time finding redeeming qualities about any of them and yet I couldn’t get enough of them. I needed to know what would happen to them next, what they would do to each other and how their stories were going to progress. Edward has hurt Bella deeply and she continues to inflict punishment on herself. Alice hates her brother, Edward, (and his car) while she also struggles in her relationship with Jasper. Jacob finds himself deeply drawn to Bella who is incapable of returning his feelings. Eleazar and Tanya make for strong supporting characters and Rosalie is a damaged woman, but one who remains strong and street savvy in her surroundings. She is a character who I believe will serve an important role as the story progresses. Rosalie does not appear to be emotionally immersed in the lives of the other characters and that could make her a powerful neutral force in any number of scenarios.

Currently, only seven chapters have been posted and while it feels as though much has been revealed, it is clear writingbabe has only scratched the surface of this world and its inhabitants. Release is labeled as Hurt/Comfort/Drama and several chapters warn of dark and disturbing subject matter but do not let this scare you away. It is a compelling and intelligent story and I am excited to see where it ultimately takes us.

I would be thrilled to see many more readers discover this fascinating WIP and speculate its ultimate outcome with me.

Take it from someone who let this story sit on the sidelines for a few weeks too long…Run (do not walk) to Release.


  1. Wow, Jenn--I'm overwhelmed! This is probably the nicest thing anyone has ever said about my writing. I may have to print and frame it, so when I'm having one of those days, I can look at it and take heart.

    Thank you, Indy Fic Pimp, for posting reviews of lesser-known stories like mine. I've found some amazing fics through your recs.

    all best,


  1. ~Elli~Iris~ said...:

    Jenn What a great review! Ind Fic Pimp, thanks for pimping such a great story! I have read all 7 chapters and can't wait for more. Writingbabe, I know you have been working on other projects that are done, and I look forward to Ch 8 when it comes together!



  1. jarkin33 said...:

    Just started this the other day and I have to say I was hooked from the beginning - agree with everything Jenn said - It's a must read!


Post a Comment