Just In
for Affaires de Coeur

7/23/2014 c1 29Edhla
Hi there - just an FYI that I'm walking into this one completely canon blind :)

• Opening: I felt that we had to read (or skim past, anyway) quite a bit here to actually reach the beginning of your story; while the info in your A/N is important, I think it could easily be moved to the end of the chapter, as it's not vital to know beforehand. The beginning to the story proper is top-notch; you immediately tell us who is doing what, start with an action, and then introduce the first indication of conflict or that something is wrong... his being unaware that Monique's eyes were boring into his back. That said, starting with Randy did confuse me a little because it felt like we were in his POV, when we're in Monique's.

• Ending: A similar strong ending, with a really poignant action that goes unexplained (because it doesn't need to be explained.) I felt the sentence might be strengthened by toning down "a thousand pinpricks tormenting" as it seemed a little dramatic for the emotional less-is-more surrounding it, but that's stylistic and not a floor.

• Dialogue: I imagine from Monique's thoughts about "Americans" that her first language is not English. Her dialogue is really suited to that - especially with stilted by technically correct phrases such as "she is a detriment to his character." As such her dialogue didn't "bounce" off Mendel's, but it would be unusual and maybe a bit OoC if it did.

• Relationships: This is a little difficult for me to make a call on since I don't know these characters, but I'll call it as I see it :) The "sudden heart-to-heart" is a trope and tropes are not bad, so I'm more than happy with the premise. I'm not really sure why Monique would suddenly spill her guts in such spectacular fashion and show herself so vulnerable when she gives the impression of being stoic, but if she didn't, we wouldn't have a story :p The part that really struck me as excellent, though, is the part where Monique tried to vent to Elsie and got not only a really unsympathetic response, but a quite insulting one. That struck me as so true to life... and I felt bad for Monique, while not knowing whether the remark Elsie implied about her is true. The shut-down from Elsie does back up why she's now venting to Mendel... she's tried to go to others and they've let her down. It does, I suppose, have to come out eventually.

• Writing: your writing is really strong, and a pleasure to read. I particularly like that you hold back when describing emotional scenes so that we avoid floweriness or what I call "aaaaaaaaaangst" (just normal angst is fine :p) Given that this piece centres around a conversation, you let the dialogue do the heavy lifting, which seems appropriate. There were a couple of repetitions I thought could be cleaned up: [began abruptly... stopped as abruptly] but nothing that struck me as a big deal (see above, though, about the one line I thought was tinged a little purple.)

Just as an aside: minor typo here - [do a god job]

Despite my limitations in terms of canon, I enjoyed this x
7/15/2014 c1 140Jason M. Lee
Yay for seeing it here!
6/26/2014 c1 5G-Matt
Very nice oneshot!

P.S. Thanks for informing me in that message.

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