Status: Complete, Word Count: 157,400, Pairing: Harry Potter/Ginny Weasley, Genre: Adventure
Read the Fic Here: https://www.fanfiction.net/s/10645463/1/Hail-Odysseus
Author’s Summary: After believing that Harry Potter died in a house fire at the age of ten, the Wizarding world is shocked when he emerges, out of the blue, just in time to attend his seventh year at Hogwarts. They’re even more shocked when he’s Sorted into Slytherin.
Characterization: This fic gets a lot right, and it also makes some rather, in my opinion, fatal mistakes, but since I’m nice, let’s start with the positives. Overall, I think this version of Harry is quite interesting. His actions are in line with his motivations and his upbringing, and I think he’s quite entertaining to read about. I think the author leans a bit too hard into the whole “edgy!Slytherin!Harry” trope for my personal taste, but I’m able to mostly overlook it. The same is also true for Ginny here. In fact, I’d argue that Ginny makes even more sense from a characterization perspective than Harry does. It kind of makes sense that after six years of being friendless in Slytherin and being essentially disowned by her family that she’d be somewhat closed off and distrusting of people. Now, I don’t buy her family disowning her, but we’ll fucking get to that, don’t worry. Now, Harry and Ginny’s interactions with each other in this fic are, overall, very entertaining, but I feel like it can sometimes meander a bit, and their character arcs are a bit too meandering for my taste. Now, in my opinion, Grindelwald is the absolute fucking standout of this fic character-wise. We only get to see him through flashbacks, but he’s always this excellent blend of absolutely fucking terrifying, and almost paternal when it comes to looking after Harry. As the reader, I always got the feeling that he’d do practically anything for Harry, and I think that this juxtaposition makes him the most interesting character in his fic. Did you enjoy that? Well, I hope so, cause time to complain a lot. Dumbledore fucking sucks ass in this story. It’s all the stereotypical, tropey bashing bullshit that I hate, and whenever he shows up I get very annoyed and want to punch something. Speaking of wanting to punch something, Weasley bashing! Not a single one of the Weasleys are at all interesting, besides Ginny, and they frustrate me a whole lot whenever they show up. Ron’s probably the most egregious, but I also have a really hard time grappling with the idea that Molly and Arthur are the kind of parents to abandon their children because of where they end up being sorted at school. Finally, I think Voldemort is…fine. I mean, Brennus doesn’t do anything interesting with him as a character, but he also doesn’t fuck anything up either, so I’ll count Voldemort as neutral in the scoring. I mean….Brennus does a lot right here, but he also fucks a lot of shit up, so…overall, I still think it’s good, it just could have been a lot better.
Romance: So this is a Harry/Ginny story, which I know makes a lot of people want bash their heads against a wall until they bleed to death, but don’t click away just yet. I think it’s actually executed fairly well here! I mean, there’s some weird shit going on here, don’t get me wrong. Harry and Ginny fucking in the forest in their animagus forms is not something I needed to read about. However, I also think their romantic connection develops fairly naturally throughout the story. There are some setbacks here and there but they mostly make sense, and it’s just an all around solid romance. This absolutely had the potential to be excellent, but it has the weird animagus fucking thing going on, and that bumps it down a fair amount for me, so while still good, you should go into this with some tempered expectations for the romance side of things.
Plot: Now this is where I think that Brennus really shines. He’s very good at coming up with interesting stories that other people haven’t done before. In this fic, the really cool shit going on is the way the Hallows work, and the ending. So this fic features this really interesting ritual involving the Resurrection Stone that allows its owner to, like, interrogate dead people, and it has this interesting set of caveats and restrictions, and the fic spends a fair amount of time going into it, and it’s great. So then there’s the ending, and…I don’t spoil fics in my reviews, but it’s not going to be what you think it is, and it makes complete sense when you look at their characters. This fic also does some other cool things, such as making Amelia Bones an antagonist, and it has a couple really impactful death scenes, but I feel like the rest of the plot kinda just exists, and meanders around a lot, and is generally entertaining, but not all that memorable.
Dialogue: Hey, it’s something that’s just unambiguously good! The dialogue in this fic is great! It flows really well, it’s often quite funny, and each character speaks in a way that feels fairly distinct, at least until you get past the first few chapters, cause wow some of that dialogue fucking sucks. Anyway, still great overall, well done Brennus.
Writing Mechanics: This fic is, for the most part, mechanically accurate. It’s got a few mistakes here and there with spelling and grammar and all that stuff, but it’s mostly solid, and as I’ve said many times before, who even gives a shit, this is fanfiction, fucking lighten up already!
Overall: Hail Odysseus is very fun. It features a lot of original ideas, especially relating to Grindelwald, and its ending is very unique. I’m also a big fan of the way the Resurrection Stone works in this fic. Is this the best story out there? Probably not. However, everyone needs at least one popcorn fic that they enjoy for its decently high entertainment value, and that’s what this fic is for me. It’s silly, it’s fun, and you’ll probably have a good time with it.
Final Thoughts: If you like Harry/Ginny, this fic is for you. If you like Grindelwald, this fic is for you. If you like decently written Slytherin Harry, then this fic is for you. Finally, if you like Dumbledore and Weasley bashing, you’re wrong and I disagree, but this fic is for you, even if you’ll enjoy it for all the wrong reasons. Go in with tempered expectations, and you’ll probably have a good time. If you expect a fantastic or groundbreaking story, then you’ll probably be let down.
Tier: Great Tier
Written on 05/20/2021