Reviews For Paradox
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Reviewer: darjeelingandcoke Signed [Report This]
Date: June 23, 2021 02:44 pm Title: The Dark Side of the Moon

!!!!!!!!!!!

First off, I *think* (and will go back through my reviews and check to make sure) that I saw this coming, that Jim's rebellion from the authorities of his time was the result of a meeting with Pam we hadn't seen yet / Jim isn't necessarily experiencing these moments in the same temporal order as Pam is.

I was so caught up in the consequences of getting Pam out (and we've spent so little time in her real world) that it didn't even occur to me how much this adventure might disturb her real life. The "HAVE YOU SEEN ME" poster is in its way way more jolting than the reveal of Jim coming to rescue her as a stranger. AND THEN we introduce the possibility that Jim has erased the changes to her timeline? AND THEN Pam has to readjust to a world she's barely a part of now? AND THEN Jim comes back for her AT A COMPLETELY DIFFERENT PLACE IN HIS TIMELINE?

THIS WAS A LOT.

I am sorry if this is incoherent because my mind is still kind of reeling. I may try this again at some point.

Reviewer: darjeelingandcoke Signed [Report This]
Date: June 23, 2021 02:30 pm Title: The Dark Side of the Moon

OH.

MY.

GOD.

Reviewer: Basscop69 Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: June 23, 2021 04:44 am Title: The Dark Side of the Moon

Oof this chapter is so painful, and so good. (Also a big fan of the chapter title). You did such a great job of describing the Jim who doesn't know her yet, and Pam's hurt and confusion - also this is presumably the first time Jim has met Pam, so he'll be working forward/back from that? (I get muddled on time travel lol, but I love it either way). I also love the note about Danny, hee, and Jim's assumption. Sounds very Danny.

Pam going back and not being able to cope is just heartbreaking - I especially loved this bit: 'The person who hurt you. This was the final pebble in an overbrimmed jar, and Pam cried brokenly on her mother's chest. How could she describe him if she didn't know who he was anymore?' So gut-wrenching.

And then ahh Jim wanting her to join him and having no idea what's gone on, and her reply...I need the next chapter on this!!

Reviewer: warrior4 Signed [Report This]
Date: June 21, 2021 05:32 am Title: The Dark Side of the Moon

So, at least she's back in her own timeline. The cold hard Jim who got her out and the one who shows up are clearly not the same guy she left. What with the feeling of abandonment and getting thrown into a middle ages prison no wonder she breaks. Of course when she gets back to her own timeline everyone is trying to help her, but there's no way they can. They'd all think she was crazy if she told them the truth. So she's just there. Existing. That's really the only word for it. As much as it hurts to see her like this we all know there's really only one way now for her to get any sort of healing. She needs to find the Jim she loves. Though I'm sure there will also be all sorts of bagage to unpack with that reunion. Why he didn't come for her earlier and all that. Great writing to pull all the emotions out of this one.

Reviewer: Basscop69 Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: June 11, 2021 02:06 pm Title: An Bhean Shasanach

Ahh I was genuinely very scared for Pam throughout this chapter - and so intrigued by who the man is at the end!! I'm also v impressed that you wrote in Irish here, and it really adds to the confusion/Pam's terror throughout the chapter. Can't wait for the next one!

Author's Response: Oh, thank you so much! I was planned for quite a long time to add multiple languages in my stories, so I'm glad it worked out well :)

Reviewer: warrior4 Signed [Report This]
Date: May 19, 2021 10:26 pm Title: An Bhean Shasanach

Hoo boy, so yeah, that's a chapter. Saving the translations for the end really helped set the mood of fear and uncertainty. Not knowing what they're saying, Pam not knowing what's going on, just everything conspires to really get the terror Pam is feeling here. Magnificent writing to bring that out. Even if it was hard to write, the feelings came across really well.

And more so that ending. She knows this voice? Huh, this should really be interesting going forward.

Author's Response: Thank you so much, Warrior! It was hard to write, but I'm glad it was worth it. 

Reviewer: darjeelingandcoke Signed [Report This]
Date: May 17, 2021 04:03 pm Title: An Bhean Shasanach

Okay, having already made you anxious (sorry!), I will just start off with this: I really liked this chapter. You did really well making us feel Pam's confusion and terror as all of a sudden this world she's been exploring gets dangerous for her and she's thrust into a situation she's not at all prepared for. (Modern Irish or no, putting this in a different language was a strong choice... you can read this with as little information as Pam has the first time around, and it really helps put you in her shoes.) And you also made the threat to Pam feel genuine, not an easy task in a continuing story where she's the main character.

I also think you did well here highlighting something that's been an undercurrent of the story - they don't really understand what they're doing. They know just enough to get themselves through each journey, but Pam in particular is a tourist in a land she's completely unable to navigate without a guide. This is great fun but far more dangerous than she's considered in a while in its own right... and not just because of whoever is chasing Jim.

Plus the details on this seem strong - I felt really able to see 16th-century Ireland.

VERY curious who the person who found her is... except I have a sneaking suspicion it's someone Pam already knows very, very well, who maybe is experiencing life in a non-linear fashion...

Author's Response:

I'm so sorry I freaked you out with this one :( 
Still, I love your reviews, and I enjoy reading your thoughts on each part — you're very discerning!
And, perhaps, you'll find some confirmations of some of your guesses in the next chapter... 
Thank you!

Reviewer: Maxine Abbott Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: May 07, 2021 06:51 pm Title: The Belated Gift

What a lovely chapter and special gift.
The banter between them seems so accurate and adorable but the magic of the experience he gave her was what made this part of the story so interesting and entertaining. I like the description of the dress of the times. Heavy into outlander right now and that's what I thought of as she dressed especially with the mention of the butt cushion.

Author's Response: Thank you for your lovely review! And about the dress — I imagined Pam wearing something like this one (only green in color!): https://64.media.tumblr.com/8878c8eafd6457527277272714f0ea51/9229e06775ab3797-a4/s2048x3072/4e0b13ecb42be009a53986cd3dc25b2ddf355d8b.png

Reviewer: Maxine Abbott Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: May 07, 2021 03:31 pm Title: The Stranger in the Woods

Dernhelm

I've stumbled into this tale as a fellow reviewer thought I was nodding to you in one of my stories. Having not read it, that was not the case but I was intrigued, very much due of the mention of time travel - something that fascinates me. So onto my bookshelf it went and now I've begun and am even more intrigued.

First off let me begin by saying you had me in the story notes with your mention of Claire's story (and may I mention another Clare, featured in Time Travelers Wife by Audrey Niffenegger which it also made me think of- if you haven't read this book, I think you would really like it).

The way you described Pam and camp really struck a chord with me as I still remember a summer where I spent a week at a camp feeling just like Pam. Girls can be so mean and you really got at that here. I could see her wanting to leave, going as far as to break the rules and go against her parents to do so.

I so felt the inspiration here in how a dazzling while light blinded her - and her confusion at getting lost.
I wasn't quite sure the man was going to be Jim but I was excited when it was - this scene gave me very strong vibes from the book I mentioned above and the way you sprinkled in movies was also fun.

The grape soda explosion was a perfect tie-in too - you should add this story as a response to the exploding soda challenge.

Oh the event of the next days seemed a good place to break (her nose perhaps).

I am most interested to see where this story goes. Thanks for sharing.

Author's Response:

Thank you, Max, for taking the time to read this story and leave a review — I appreciate it very much! I hope you'll enjoy this story.

I heard about 'Time Travelers Wife' but neither read this story nor watched the adaptation. But I'm curious about all time travel stories, so definitely put this one on my list!

Reviewer: darjeelingandcoke Signed [Report This]
Date: April 21, 2021 04:23 pm Title: The Season of Rains

OKAY. WOW. LOTS GOING ON HERE.

First, the photoscope is cool and I want one. I love Pam's cleverness in this chapter, even if it doesn't always serve her well. She's a little hard on herself considering she's exploring a world she doesn't know. Although it is striking to me that it hasn't occurred to her yet that the secrets Jim is hiding might be about HER.

You hint at some interesting answers to our questions about Jim here. His society seems something less than utopic. Now, the environmental degradation is probably mainly on us (sorry Jim), and I guess what he describes might be just standard capitalist dystopia rather than authoritarian dystopia... but it does hint that maybe he's something of a brave rebel. OR, given the hints that he's hurt someone and the actually fairly sensible limits on what he can tell Pam that he's chipping away at, and, you know, the implication that he's trying to save Pam from a terrible fate against a well thought code code... maybe Jim's the bad guy. Or at the very least he's risking terrible consequences for love.

Also definitely struck by Pam's sense that Jim knows her body already. It sure SEEMS like they're on the same timeline at this point, and Pam noticed earlier that Jim was experiencing events out of order. But we don't KNOW that they are. Which raises some questions about Jim's goodness again... feels like the sort of thing he SHOULD share with her.

The aftermath of their first time is gorgeously written. You are a POET.

THE DRESS. THE PERIWINKLE DRESS. AND IT WAS KAREN'S. TWIST AFTER TWIST. AND THAT CLIFFHANGER. *PLEASE* DO NOT WAIT SEVERAL MONTHS TO UPDATE THIS AGAIN BECAUSE I DESPERATELY NEED TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENS NEXT.

Author's Response:

That awkward moment when I want to discuss every single moment, but I CAN'T because of spoilers :( 
I can say, though, a little about Jim's goodness. He's a good man... but the norms of morality he was raised in may (or may not) differ from ours. If views on what's good and what's bad can change between two generations, what could happen with them in a couple of centuries from now?.. 
I'm a slow writer, but! I'm planning the next chapter to be much shorter (no more than 4,000 words), and I already have 1,209 words written (and 396 words in chapter 9 because I have a feeling that you might need that chapter asap too), so I hope to finish this chapter in May. 
Thank you again! 

Reviewer: darjeelingandcoke Signed [Report This]
Date: April 20, 2021 10:19 pm Title: The Silence of Sound

Okay, so I've been saving this until I had a chance to actually sit down and read back through the full story from the beginning, and in the meantime you've written another chapter, and I'm now actually a little happy I waited because I would NOT be happy to have to wait for the follow-up to this.

SO MUCH going on here. Some fantastic work-ins of canon (them sharing the Audi, the peck that was just in the moment versus this moment of wanting to kiss for real for the first time). Standard-issue "pretending everything is fine" canon Jim. Pam coming to grips with how much of himself Jim has hidden from her in the guise of keeping her safe... in ways that both hurt their relationship and their bond and in ways that might endanger her, like leaving her in a world that she enjoys but does not in any way understand. Some shout-outs to your Regency fic. A good capture of the general JAM vibe.

And, of course, what Jim is doing to the fabric of time. He's super casual about the controlled paradoxes, and it's hard to tell if that's him or the culture, but the idea that they can fix anything, particularly in concert with the hints that the time travelers don't understand the past as well as they think they do. And then we throw in the idea that Jim is less demi-god and more joy-riding team and the Kennedy re-election reference... I'm desperate to know what happens next.

BUT: I have a prediction: something terrible happens to Pam in her post-college years. Jim has either changed it and thus caused ripples, OR has decided to give her the life she won't get to live, and in traveling to the past so much has impacted it. The latter is intriguing to me because it occurs to me you usually don't see quite so much casual time travel in a time travel story. Usually there has to be some sort of purpose.

Author's Response:

Thank you so much for such a profound review! It's a pleasure to read them :) And I'm happy I could keep the JAM vibe — I don't want to write about characters that have only the names in common with The Office heroes (not ready for an origin yet...).
And my special gratitude for noticing the Kennedy reference! It's not a spoiler that the universe these Pam and Jim exist in is different from ours, but I want to add more little moments that point at that — so yay! 

Reviewer: Basscop69 Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: April 20, 2021 07:28 am Title: The Season of Rains

So: I have to confess that I'm not normally a huge fan of sci fi - but this is amazing! It's so beautifully written. I've just read the whole thing, and I'm hooked. I really like the way you've written their relationship, this version of Jim is adorable/heart-breaking, and I'm really enjoying how you've re-worked lines from the show and things like Pam's volleyball camp and the hockey game. It's so great! And their interactions all still feel very real, and very them, despite the setting. I'm also so intrigued about what's going on with Karen and everything that Jim knows. Their kiss in this chapter was perfection. And then the cliffhanger at the end! 😱 I am now eagerly waiting for what comes next...

Author's Response:

Aww, thank you so much for your kind words! It means a lot to me. And, to be honest, I'm not a sci-fi fan either, but I'm fond of time-traveling (and mixing things I like together), so Jim and Pam with their infamous timing... match made in heaven :) 
I'm a slow (English) reader and even a slower writer, but I'm already working on the next chapter, and I hope to publish it in the following weeks. Thank you again!

Reviewer: warrior4 Signed [Report This]
Date: April 17, 2021 09:18 pm Title: The Season of Rains

Loved the use of canon lines sprinkled throughout this one. Really lots of fun, especially with the big moments they've had together. Pam coming to the realization of her true feelings for Jim. Hearing him say the same to her. Getting some more backstory about everything. All great.

Loved the line that happiness can stop time. Especially for them wrapped up in their little cocoon of love there.

Then all of a sudden the Casino Night dress makes an appearance. And it's something else from his past. Curious.

That ending though. Hoo boy. This seems ominous. Jim being petrified of her going through that door, and when she turns around, he's not there. Really interesting. Should be a treat to find out where we go from here.

Author's Response:

Thank you, Warrior, I'm glad you liked this piece. And that was fun to me to weave canon moments into the different setting. 
I hope my real life won't get in a way, and I'll publish the update sooner than the previous one!

Reviewer: JennaBennett Signed [Report This]
Date: February 03, 2021 12:37 am Title: The Silence of Sound

There were so many moments in this where I wanted to shove them together & say “just kiss already” or “talk” even.
You write a slow burn of anticipation so well. Pam’s swirling thoughts throughout are perfect.
I love that I can never predict the setting of this story, and yet the characters fit together so well no matter the time.
Bringing in Karen adds an extra layer of intrigue... I truly can’t wait to see where you take this next!

Author's Response:

Thank you so much, Jenna! I was worried so much about this chapter, I wanted both to (finally) bring the romance and not rush anything; I'm so glad that it worked for you! 
I hope the next chapter takes me less than two months... 

Reviewer: warrior4 Signed [Report This]
Date: January 31, 2021 09:39 am Title: The Silence of Sound

Kind of a heavy chapter this time around. Feels like Pam's getting herself deeper into things here. She's not content to just go along for the ride, she wants to know more of what's going on. That he can't talk about it all is a huge frustration I'm sure. Especially with the way her feelings are running. She tries to take some time away from him, but it's no use. He's all she thinks about. So the scene there at the end where he does give some answers is a nice way to aliviate some of that tension. They do still want to be with each other, even if there's still some tension about everything. Great writing.

Author's Response: Thank you, Warrior! I totally agree that it's a heavy chapter (for me to write too), but I'm glad to give them an opportunity to be open and honest with each other... at least, as much as it is possible in this world.

Reviewer: JennaBennett Signed [Report This]
Date: December 22, 2020 03:50 pm Title: The Importance of Being Observant

‘Like a full set of teeth, for a start.’Their banter is adorable! Poor Sir Raymond definitely doesn’t stand a chance...

I feel like Lynn has good intentions. I love that Pam is having these completely unfathomable adventures, but it’s tough that she’s failing things at school as a result.

“sometimes they accidentally had changed history” No big deal. This is such a great line.

Dernhelm, the humor sprinkled through this chapter is SO good! “She’d stay away from Gabe”

“He noticed her all the time” MY HEART. Oh.

“The touch itself lasted less than a moment, but the ripples of warmth it had caused kept going on and on, and soon even the tips of her ears were burning.” This is such beautiful writing. I love this description.

I kind of hope that Pam’s wish doesn’t come true...

Author's Response: Thank you, Jenna! Your reviews bring me so much joy!
And, of course, things between them couldn't stay the same ;) But that's a spoiler... 

Reviewer: Sam Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: November 29, 2020 11:22 am Title: The Importance of Being Observant

I'm really interested in the conflict that you've introduced for Pam. You've written it really well, and I'm really looking forward to seeing where you take it.
Loving the idea of a space agency. Like a travel agency, but with time. Sounds fab!

Author's Response: Thank you! I can't say much without spoilers, but in further chapters, there will be more about the agency :) 

Reviewer: Sam Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: November 25, 2020 10:53 am Title: The Belated Gift

I loved the vivid description - you've really captured the settings and moods. I also loved Pam's poster; that was a great touch. Jim's vulnerability at the end, when he's handing over the pendant, is super-sweet.
Thanks!

Author's Response: Thank you so much for your kind words! 

Reviewer: Sam Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: November 25, 2020 10:22 am Title: The Beginning of Everything

This is extremely inventive!. Super work.

Author's Response: Thank you! 

Reviewer: darjeelingandcoke Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: November 24, 2020 11:29 pm Title: The Importance of Being Observant

Some very cute Jim-Pam banter to start this one - and appropriately so for a chapter that addresses the Jam of it all.

It's interesting to see the consequences of Pam spending so much time living outside of the shackles of time while still making her home in a very much linear-time world. I'm glad Lynn forces her to consider her feelings for Jim (and I love that Lynn is fundamentally correct - what's screwing up Pam *is* that she's in love), but I'm worried for her that she's insufficiently concerned about the rest of the consequences.

Still, this was an adorable trip with Pam finally realizing how romantic this all is and, much as Pam does, trying to avoid what it all means.

I liked the little hints of canon you worked in in this one – Gabe, the shirt from the fashion show at lunch.

Not going to lie to you: I’m definitely going to try out the phrase “I envy a tiny flea that has a privilege to kiss your creamy skin” out on someone at some point and see how it goes.

Author's Response:

Well, I like the humorous part of Jam, and though I feel I'm not skillful enough to write it, I can't stop trying. And yeah, something 'boring' and 'rational' are so easily eclipsed by brighter and more interesting things... I feel that it might have happened in Pam's situation. 
Oh, and the curious thing about the flea phrase — it was inspired by a poem of one French author to his La Belle Dame. I didn't find the original, but in the translation, I found he wrote that the flea was the messenger of love, because his blood and blood of his beloved fused together. Romantic, wasn't it?

Reviewer: darjeelingandcoke Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: November 24, 2020 10:33 pm Title: The Things to Remember

Well, with all the trouble foreshadowed in the last chapter, here comes even more. I’m feeling a little concerned for Pam losing her place in her own time – it does not strike me as something Jim might think about before it has real consequences. And of course we now have Pam starting to explore on her own and set her own agenda in a world she doesn’t fully understand… and another hint that Jim knows a terrible fate lies ahead for Pam and is trying to forestall it by getting her to take on nanobots. This is a very complex world you’re weaving with this story, and I like it.

I *loved* Pam’s observations on the mistakes in the time capsule of her own time, and how imperfect the travelers’ understanding of the world they’re exploring is. Feels like there’s a lot you can do with that and what it implies about their general understanding of what they’re doing.

And some interesting hints planted here too about Jim and what he’s up to… I’m VERY much enjoying this.

Author's Response: Thank you! Perhaps, that's the most complicated thing I've ever written, and I'm excited so much when readers spotted these tiny elements I'd included. I hope I won't mess with the plot and all the loose ends :)

Reviewer: darjeelingandcoke Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: November 24, 2020 09:40 pm Title: The Belated Gift

I REALLY liked this chapter. So much going on. The trip to Paris was lovely, but I’m very intrigued by the table-setting you did the future. Jim’s brief disappearance at the exhibit, the subtle changes to the past, the twist to the normal time travel concern so that it’s about the impact on the people of the past/present, not the present/future, the fairly ominous hints that Jim’s busily trying to change something that’s going to happen to *Pam.* You’ve set an awful lot of plates spinning here, I’m eager to find out where you go with them.

I *am* a sucker for a good alternate history story, so I appreciate you including the discussion about killing Hitler, and Jim mocking Pam for her bloodlust. There's a lot of funny material in this chapter - Jim teasing Pam about her closet and her befuddlement at the clothes were great, too; Jim's corny joke about her making an "impression,” the little comic moment of Jim realizing as he's saying it that Pam's lack of nanobots is a problem and Pam's confused "I'm good."

I love Pam’s sheer joy at this process – particularly the way it came back in the end.

Author's Response: I'm so glad you liked this one, it was so fun to write it! I'm slightly anxious to keep everything consistent, but... we'll how it goes. 

Reviewer: Merria Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: November 24, 2020 09:09 pm Title: The Importance of Being Observant

So glad you brought this story back! Things are getting very interesting, but we still know so little about Jim. And Pam’s grades are slipping. It’s a slippery slope.
Can’t wait to read more

Author's Response: Thank you, Merria! Hope you'll like the next chapter :)

Reviewer: darjeelingandcoke Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: November 24, 2020 08:35 pm Title: The Beginning of Everything

Round #2! I love that he keeps showing up at this very specific moments when Pam is lonely and sad and in need of someone to connect with. So he's not just a mystery to be solved for her, he's also someone who is, in his own "person not experiencing time in a linear way" fashion, someone who's there for her when she needs him.

And I really appreciate the acknowledgement that Jim resetting her understanding of the universe is probably going to have some long-term consequences for her. It's not like her life stops in between these incidents, and she has to live her very normal existence knowing there's something greater out there.

The choice to have her experience this as color to be captured is magnificent for young artist Pam - this is the way she likes to think about the world already, and it feels natural and character-appropriate that it's the way she processes things she doesn't understand.

Author's Response: Thank you! To be honest, I like stories with a butterfly effect and long-running consequences so much, so here I'll unapologetically play with all of my favorite themes... 

Reviewer: darjeelingandcoke Signed 1 [Report This]
Date: November 24, 2020 08:31 pm Title: The Stranger in the Woods

Interesting start! This is not my usual genre, so I'm looking forward to seeing what you do with it.

Ugh. Poor Pam. Her loneliness really comes through clearly here, as does how fundamentally young she is - and naturally how she tries this not-particularly-smart young person's gambit. She also seems pretty well aligned with the insecurities and quiet of canon Pam.

It's very striking to me how you had the age gap between them play into why she gets involved with Jim. Interested to see if that comes up again.

I'm a sucker for good Pam-Jim banter, and I definitely liked this early version of it. And I like how you portray Jim in this very different universe as exactly what he is in canon - someone who helps her escape from what what's weighing her down in her own mind.

Author's Response: Thank you! This story is dear to me and I'm glad you decided to stick with it even though it's not your cup of tea. Hope you'll enjoy this journey! 

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