Status: Complete, Word Count: 77,900, Pairing: Harry Potter/Luna Lovegood, Genre: Romance
Read the Fic Here: https://www.fanfiction.net/s/6862426/1/The-Quidditch-World-Cup
Author’s Summary: After the war, things didn’t go as planned for Harry. He tried to be an Auror, but it wasn’t for him. Instead, he turned to Quidditch. Now, at the 2002 World Cup, he looks back on what went wrong and discovers what he always wanted.
Characterization: Both Harry and Luna are excellent in this fic. I’ve seen a few stories here and there where Harry becomes a Quidditch Player, and this one’s probably my favorite version of that admittedly not great trope. I think it does a good job capturing the essence of the job from the perspective of a slightly jaded pro sports player, and I think Harry’s search to figure out what he wants from life is really great. Speaking of great things, Luna’s great here as well! A well written, slightly jaded Luna is something that is extremely rare, and I think TE7 does a fantastic job pulling it off. She still has her little quirks, and she’s still brutally honest in an adorable, mildly uncomfortable, charming way, but there’s a layer of melancholy and sadness underneath that that’s explored in a really impactful way in this fic. Titus Button is an interesting character. He shows up in at least three of TE7’s fics, and I always find myself feeling a bit confused by his presence, because there are actual Slytherin Quidditch Players that he could be using instead of inventing one, but I don’t really care because he’s pretty fun to read. He doesn’t go through much of an arc, but he’s a pretty consistent presence throughout the fic, and he doesn’t annoy me or anything, so he gets a pass. I think Ginny’s written really well, and it’s impressive that TE7 managed to write a convincing deterioration of their relationship that didn’t resort to ridiculous bashing. It’s very difficult to write a competent falling out of love arc, and he just fucking nails it. It’s told from Harry’s perspective, so it’s a bit biased towards him narratively speaking, but if you look at what went down, they were both equally in the wrong a lot of the time. Daphne Greengrass is also in this fic, and, just like Titus, she doesn’t have an arc but she also gets a pass because I like this version of her. In the end it’s Harry, Luna, and Ginny who carry this fic, and they’re the reason that I love this fic as much as I do.
Romance: The romance in this fic is absolutely fantastic. I already mentioned how great Harry and Ginny’s falling out of love arc is, but what’s even better is Harry’s relationship with Luna. As soon as they started interacting with each other, I was absolutely sold. Their conversations are so wholesome and delightful, except when they aren’t that at all and are actually fairly heavy, and I honestly think both ends of the spectrum work really well. I also like that their relationship moves fairly slowly, and that the majority of the fic is just the two of them becoming close friends, and it only transitions to romance near the very end. I also really like that the fic’s Epilogue doesn’t perfectly wrap everything up. TE7 has some whacky Epilogues in his stories, but this one’s really great and works very well. Overall, I think the romance in this fic works really well. There are definitely moments here and there that falter, but this is the fic that sold me on Harry/Luna, like, as a concept, and I think it holds up really well.
Plot: This fic’s plot is decent, but it falls victim to a lot of the issues that TE7 typically runs into. I think this fic spends far too much time on flashbacks. Like, I enjoy a lot of the stuff in the flashbacks, but I think the fic would be far better if it was just him experiencing the things he’s remembering in the flashbacks, because the fic would flow better. It could even be a non-linear story where it jumps back and forth between the past and the present, like chapter to chapter or something, but I just don’t like flashbacks as a storytelling device, and this fic has a lot of them. I’m also not a huge fan of Harry deciding to sleep with Daphne right after Ginny finally ends up leaving him, because I don’t really buy that that’s something Harry would do. It’s not even that the fic does a bad job explaining what he was feeling, it’s more that the fic does not adequately explain how his feelings translate into his actions. It’s very tonally different from the rest of the fic, and it just doesn’t mesh very well.
Dialogue: This is a TE7 fic, so it should not be at all surprising that the dialogue is superb. It flows really well, it enhances emotional scenes, it enhances funny scenes, all the characters have distinct mannerisms that make it easy to follow, it’s just fantastic. I love it, it’s excellent.
Writing Mechanics: This is a very mechanically sound fic. While it undeniably has a few flaws and errors here and there, it’s very consistently sound, so….well done TE7, you even aced the part of the review that nobody gives a flying fuck about.
Overall: The Quidditch World Cup is fucking adorable! For the longest time, this was my favorite Harry/Luna story—a position which has recently been usurped by Ubiquitously Verbose’s Lunar Calendar—and I re-read this fic all the time. My absolute favorite thing about this story is the dynamic between Harry and Luna. They have amazing chemistry together, and the story is at its best when they’re interacting. This story also introduces The Endless 7’s recurring original character, Titus Button, who’s a professional Quidditch player who played as beater for the Slytherin team while he and Harry were both at Hogwarts. I’ve always enjoyed his character in TE7’s stories, and I think he’s pretty fun here too. In this story, he basically exists to allow Harry to reminisce about his life since he defeated Voldemort, but he has a distinct enough character that I always enjoy the story when he’s there. The first few chapters are devoted to the deterioration of Harry and Ginny’s relationship, which I think is done surprisingly well. It doesn’t resort to any sort of ridiculous Ginny bashing or anything like that, it’s just them naturally growing apart, and I think it works very well. This story is entirely character driven, and The Endless 7 is always at his best when writing characterization, so it’s no wonder that I love it. Please check this out! Harry/Luna doesn’t get nearly enough love in the Harry Potter fandom, and this story’s existence makes me very happy.
Final Thoughts: I still adore this fic. Is it flawed in places? Sure. The plot’s a bit weird at times, and I’ve never fully been into the whole QWC backdrop idea, but on the other hand, I really like all the Harry/Luna romance, and this fic is essentially responsible for getting me into the pairing in the first place, and it will always hold a special place in my heart as a result. Overall, it’s absolutely fantastic, and if you like Harry/Luna and well-written romance, then this fic is for you.
Tier: Top Tier
Written on 05/20/2021