Small favors by Chilly_flame (aka Harriet)

The not-so-tiny-anymore fan fiction universe of Devil Wears Prada is blessed by – proportionally speaking – an unbelievable number of exceptional writers. They deliver often, they deliver a lot and when they do – oh, boy. It’s fan fiction at its best – all grown up, smart, and literate.

Chilly_flame (to her many SVU fans also known as Harriet) is one of DWP’s beacons of light.

In Small Favors, Andrea, now a promising Mirror reporter, is reacquainted with her ex-boss Miranda Priestly. Against all odds, they become friends. There is attraction, there is tension, there is heartbreak and, finally, there is a love story of epic proportions (No, really. This jewel was written for Ralst’s epic proportions challenge).

There is, of course, a delicious offering of angst, but as Chilly reassuringly states on her LJ page: My characters shall have, after a little trouble, all that they desire.
Small favors is tightly structured story, with beautifully developed leads. Actually, the whole cast is handled masterfully, including the twins. I really appreciate Chilly_flame’s way with words. Never over the top, her style is rather ascetic than baroque. It works remarkably well: the mark of a good writer is knowing when to step back. I love the way she evades the clichéd phrases, turns them on their head, and brings the long lost luster to overused metaphors.

Ahm, not to forget, she writes erotica really, really well. When you think about it, with all the clothes and sensuality, DWP is a huge erotica opportunity. We are not talking underwear here, it’s lingerie! And garters. And cleavages! And silk! And lace! Believe me, Chilly_flame uses her opportunities well 🙂

And the best part? There are two more epic parts to this universe plus two shorter interludes. Bon appetit!

Nice Girls Don’t by Telanu (aka Somniesperus)

This reviewer is just as clueless in questions of fashion as Andrea Sachs. And still… this story makes me want to learn all about it.

Or, let’s put it this way – Somniesperus is the reason the movie The Devil Wears Prada is worth seeing (well, her and Meryl Streep, of course). Telanu aka Somniesperus has written many more stories in this universe but if you haven’t checked the fandom yet, this story would be a perfect way in.

The general premise, in short: Miranda Priestly is all powerful dictator/editor of the fashion magazine Runway. Andrea Sachs is her newly hired, fashion-wise clueless assistant.

The Nice Girls Don’t is an AU in the usual sense that the storyline departs from the movie to make the subtext the main-text. It’s a Miranda/Andy love story, of course. It’s also a poignant study of human character. It’s mature writing at its finest (and no, I do not mean it like that!): the characters are wonderfully flawed. They are weak, and they are strong; they are mean, and they are nice; they are hopeless, they are powerful, they are cruel, and in the end, so very engaging. The writing is seamless, perfectly executed. Never pathetic, never over the top. Somniesperus does not take the easy way out, her stories are about facing the fears and the consequences. No formulas here, no worn out phrases or used up metaphors.

Not to get too metaphysical about it – the story is, of course, hot as hell.

Is it our love for power games and strong women (and a distinct lack of those in hit movies)? Is it the archetypal teacher fantasy? In any case, Miranda Priestly in hands of this writer seems far more dangerous than Xena the Conqueror. And twice as hot 🙂

For one, she doesn’t even raise her voice and all her minions tremble in their fancy Manolo Blahniks…