When I started reading Twific what seems like decades ago, I only read AU. Granted the AH genre hadn't exploded yet but regardless, AU was the norm but good AU wasn't easy to come by. Lately, thanks to HMonster, Nerac and BrattyVamp, I've been on the lookout for AU again. Now it's become a bit of an obsession to find 'different' AU.
My English bird Emmy aka Pippapear was hounding me for weeks to read Behind the Clouds from EchoesofTwilight. Her exact words were something along the lines of "Did you read it yet? If not, why not! When are you going to? If yes, why haven't you told me so we can discuss it!" I love her normally, but more now because she didn't let up on me until I acquiesced and read it.
Actual Review from Chapter One
You know there are only so many different ways to pull off AU to be considered original. I honestly believe that EoT has done a great job of creating a new premise that I haven't seen while keeping with the personalities and time lines accordingly. The story starts with Carlisle (hello doctor...) working in a hospital in Chicago, when a visit from Alice changes the course of their lives.
Ultimately, the event she foresees brings a young Edward and his severely injured parents into the ER where Carlisle attempts to save them only to have them succumb to their injuries. Alice, the all knowing, tells Carlisle that Edward will cross paths with them in the future and when the time comes, he'll become a vampire with their family as well.
The Cullens then find themselves thrust back into Edward's life when they migrate to Forks to start over yet again. It's here they find that Edward had lived the past few years with his aunt and is nothing short of exceptional, just as Alice had foreseen. "Hugward" is the affectionate name that EoT's readers have dubbed him and rightly so, the moniker fits perfectly. From the very first meeting, you just want to hug him and squeeze him and call him... nevermind.
There are multiple story lines and points of view that normally, would probably lead to confusion but in BtC it works so well and so fluidly that it doesn't skip a beat. EoT has managed to have even the most secondary of characters play such integral roles in the story that you find yourself clamoring for a non Edward or Bella POV. When the hell does that ever happen?
Jasper uses his gift in a tremendously romantic way to explain how deeply their feelings run. Emmett, my God, Emmett is a scene stealer during his bonding time with his almost brother. Rose, in a wonderful turn of events, isn't a vapid narcissist that wants to tear their heads off and Alice, well she's Alice and a wonderful version of her.
In another unheard of turn of events, I'm not only tolerating the Carlisle and she who must not be named dynamic but also enjoying it. I'm even reading-not skimming-their smut. It is a sign of the apocalypse.
The first dozen or so chapters builds up to the arc of the story. Chapter 13 specifically? Oh Lord, I was warned by numerous people of it's impact to the story and how perfectly written it is, and trust me. She doesn't disappoint.
Her parallels that she sets throughout the story revolving around love, soul mates, Edward and Bella and the Volturi are fantastic and really hit home in a twist that honestly, threw me for such a loop that I literally went on twitter to harass EoT for information.
Actual Review from Chapter Fourteen
Talk about awesome kick in the pants! This twist sets up a wonderfully descriptive scene that I can't share because I'll ruin it but know that I read it twice and loved it more the second time around! Her writing is expressive and detailed to the point that you envision everything with perfect clarity. It's astounding.
The following chapters are killer, they're so good it's almost sickening. I will say that the cliffhanger in 17 made me once again twitterstalk her and literally harass her into submission that I wouldn't need to rage. I'm delicate and shit damn it!@*&*@&D*A&.
Long story short. Her chapters are long and meaty (wow that sounds dirty), they're descriptive and beautiful and she is a semi-regular updater unlike myself. It's astonishing to me that she isn't close to 1,000 reviews with this story. It's worth the time to sit and read through the 18 chapters posted.
New AU are hard to find. Great AU are even more of a rare commodity. I hope you'll give EchoesofTwilight and Behind the Clouds a try.
Ninapolitan has nothing interesting to say about herself here. (Pastiche adds that Nina is the wry voice on Twigasm, a promotionalist primera of The Fandom Gives Back, and the bloggy pervalationalist behind the Perv Pack Smut Shack. She also writes The Wingman.)