Well done overall! Ch. 1-2
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"Perhaps that's why I like the cold so much, It acts like people repellent." Same, actually. I enjoy going outside in the warm, summer. But doing the winter, cold is the perfect excuse to stay indoors and read!
So he uses his gift of foresight for his mind to travel ahead, what does he see? Does he just look for the path and then return to the present?
I like the idea of him finding jobs through Max, although his name seems more modern compared to Irulen (although I love the name), unless its a name from another country?
I really like your descriptions, they're very vivid, but I think describing the wall watcher as "the fatty cylinder" is pushing it a little too far. I don't know, but to me it just seems to be an unnatural description. And then several lines later you describe him as "the little mole man", I think that's a contradictory description?
As I was saying, I really love your descriptions. I think that they're very well done and its as if you are right there watching everything happening. The way the story is written reminds me of older fantasy novels I've read and Tamora Pierce's style. Its nice to read a story that makes you think of traditional fantasy and yet something new.
I think the setting feels much like a character in itself and gives the story a certain gloomy, suspenseful tone. I like it.
I think its an interesting twist to have a wizard that solves mysteries and believes more in the darkness in humans than in the supernatural. It gives the story a refreshing look. Also speaking of Tamora Pierce, Irulen reminds me of her wizard Numair. He's a wizard too and similar in a way in personalities to your character.
I also really love Irulen's bond with the raven, Max. I enjoy it because its a twist on the traditional view and symbolize of the raven. Even mentioned in the story, ravens traditionally are seen as harbingers of death and so I think its an interesting way to flip the trope. Here Max, the raven brings the wizard that helps towns and people find closure.
The fact that Irulen has such a strong bond with the raven adds something to his character and I think helps him be more 3D. That being said, I think Irulen seems very well developed as a character along with his weakness for beautiful women. I'm also thinking that Irulen and the tavern girl will become romantic interests later on?
As for the plot, I think its suspenseful and already even in the first chapter, I want to know who killed Isabel and why. I love mysteries and a wizard who solves them is a delightful concept.
The other characters I think are well developed. The village head, the watchman, and the other characters. They all seem pretty realistic.
Overall I think this is a great start. And while it isn't super exciting as far of what happens, I think it has an air of suspense and mystery that I enjoy, So well done, I'm excited to read the rest.
I like the description of the old man where Irulen thinks that he can see dust coming out of his mouth. I think that's a good description to show how old he is.
I think its an interesting detail to add in the part about Max going to the bathroom. I'm not sure how necessary it is, but its a detail I myself wouldn't have thought to have added. My next question then is what does he do with the rag and does he do that all the time?
"The ground's snow..." I think that's an awkward phrasing because it gives the ground possession of the snow, as if it belongs there. Which is an interesting concept in itself, but I do think that it would be better to maybe just say that the snow was littered with brown needles...
"Max, deciding to spread his morning wings," <--- Not sure what you mean by morning wings.
I love the description of when he walks into the grove, it sounds so beautiful despite the horrible thing that happened there.
I think its interesting the way he reacts to the crystal and has another one. It almost seems to be that this event is somehow personal to him, as if it affects him more than other murder scenes.
I like the idea of him collecting the footprint using the ink method, but considering how cold it would be, I'm not sure how effective it would actually work. I might imagine that the ink would either freeze really quickly or that the ink would be warmer than the snow and therefore melt it. I'm not sure how well it would transfer. Have you done research on this method or tried it yourself?
I like the way you describe people, raging beasts, wriggling worms, etc. Nice descriptions. Just be careful not to overdo it.
So this mystery man comes to Angus telling him his daughter's soul is trapped and is constant pain. And then he makes a bargain to keep the town safe. I'm confused on how this is connected. What exactly was Angus trying to keep the town safe from? From this mystery man, from the same thing happening to other people, or something else?
The ending is very captivating and dark. I like it. Good suspense.
I think the second chapter does a good job at keeping up the suspense and mystery. As in the first chapter, I think some of the details and descriptions are a little unnecessary or overdone. Other times I think your descriptions are wonderful and very well done. I like the town as a setting and it seems to have its own character. Nicely well done. I remembered what this reminds me of, the retelling of the Red Riding Girl story with Amanda Seyfried from a couple years ago. The town reminds me of that. Also with the similarities between wolves and girls being taken. Of course, two totally different stories altogether, but the similarities make me think of that. I think that the characters are still very well done and are all their own character. No one seems to be particularly flat or cliche, so well done. None of them seem to be Mary Sue or Gary Sues. The plot as I mentioned before is still suspenseful and full of mystery. And it flows well, I wasn't confused with the direction of the chapter at all. Overall this is another great chapter and I look forward to reading the third.