Below, you'll see any text that was highlighted with comments from the reviewer.
Message to Readers
thinking of writing a follow-up piece for this one; i don't think i'm quite done with dante and antonio yet.
if you enjoyed this piece, comment!! likes tell writers nothing without feedback
reviews very much appreciated
I love that you weaved the smile and twinkle back into the story, especially when you expressed they smile with words other than "smile." In fact, you might consider saying "twinkle" differently near the end i.e. "dante realises antonio has a twinkle in his eye too."
I love your balance of simple sentence structure with interesting descriptions. Your speech comes across as "simple/plain" but when you actually look at the vocab, it's not. I think that's a sign that you know how to use your sophisticated style to communicate a the tone you want. Bravo!
I'd just like to say, most of my highlights are super nitpicky (which I think is the wrong word...). You did a great job and I loved the challenge of getting to review this. Here are some suggestions and concerns:
Careful with your present/past tense. Sometimes you switch back and forth; it throws the reader off a little and disrupts the flow.
I like your subtlety, but there were several spots where I wasn't sure which character you were talking about. I would suggest having like 3 people read the story aloud and ask them if anything is confusing. That way, 1, you'll know if I'm right or just dumb, 2, you'll hear how they are reading it, like what words they stress, and 3, they may come across other spots that I missed.
One more thing to think about. You don't give the character's defined personalities. Now, I'm not going to say you need to (for all I know, you could have done that on purpose), but it's something to think about.
I made sure to read this like 7 times--sometimes highlighting, sometimes just taking it in--to make sure I really did the work and understood the story. I know a lot of my highlights were compliments, but I did that partially to point out what worked and why. I think understanding what we're doing right and why can teach us almost as much as understanding what we're doing wrong.