Diane E. Hoffman: Response to "On a String" by Uwe R. Hoeppe

"On A String" by Uwe R. Hoeppe is a three part fantasy that starts out as an adventure story set in medieval times. The title, very appropriately, represents the thread that ties the three parts of this story together. Each character is manipulated by a higher order.

Events start right where they should, in the middle of things. Imagery for section one is very strong. The castle, party, Grakk, and his progress toward his eventual destination are easily visualized. A11 senses are brought into play. Inner thoughts and vivid description turn Grakk into a three dimensional character. Everything the reader needs to know about Grakk, where he is, why he is there, and what he is going to do, are artfully arranged to build suspense for the reader. When Grakk dies, it sets you back until you continue with the story. Then everything makes sense.

There were only a few weaknesses that I could find. Most were minor word phrasings found throughout the work. The one other element for section one was the dialogue for the two courtiers. The drunken speech was creative. However, they needed to be using old world speech. They sounded too modern. There was almost no description of the courtier that dropped his mug. Not much beyond "his plumed head turned toward Grakk" or something to that effect to give a quick image of this character is needed.

Part two is shorter than the first section. Jeff's thoughts and frame of mind are apparent. The physical senses are easily felt when he is riding his bicycle. His death is fairly quick. Jeff's death ties the first and last section together nicely. He is the reason for both to exist.

The third part is very brief and closes the story nicely. Jeff has been part of a grander scheme similar to his own fantasy game with Grakk. Jeff’s guardian angel lost him to a twist of fate similar to how he (Jeff) lost Grakk to a roll of the die. This section is more thought and dialogue than imagery. In this case, it would be distracting to try and describe the higher order of beings.

Most of the prose are very strong. The story is creative and enjoyable. There are a few spots that need work. For the most part, it is just word choice. Great job.

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