Haruhi Suzumiya 08: The Indignation of Haruhi Suzumiya

February 9, 2013

Nagaru Tanigawa – Yen Press – 2012 – 11+ volumes
this is about the novel series

Two stories this time, and I’m still up for these longer excursions after the handful of short story volumes that preceded the last one. This volume was… only okay, mostly because I wasn’t thrilled about the second story.

“Wandering Shadow” was the second story. It was kind of a fun mystery. The SOS Brigade is hired to investigate a dog walking path that may or may not be haunted, and is making some neighborhood dogs very sick. The story builds well, and has the characters considering whether or not there really could be a ghost on the path, and whether that means that Haruhi wished that so, although that would also mean she was wishing for the adorable dogs to fall deathly ill. So the characters go over the facts of the canine sicknesses again and again, wracking their brains as to how and why this could happen. I did like that the disease was so mysterious and down-to-Earth, since not even Yuki can pick up on what it is with her alien machine senses. The resolution… hm, was very disappointing to me. It was something very technical, and out of left field. Not only was it impossible for the reader to guess what it was, in the end, the explanation was so long-winded and had nothing to do with what was going on that I found myself extremely disinterested. One thing I do like about this series is that it uses science, philosophy, and pseudo-science to come up with plausible explanations for everything that happens. It bends over backwards here to do that again. But when it tries to hard, I find myself disinterested, which is a shame. And probably just a matter of personal taste.

The first story was pretty great though, and very much in the spirit of the series. “Editor-in-Chief, Full Speed Ahead!” has the student council president threatening the SOS Brigade with disbandment unless they can prove they are actually the Literature Club (whose room and funds they use) and publish a ‘zine. This, of course, gives Haruhi a reason to make a ‘zine and get all fired up about a conquerable enemy. Koizumi explains that the Student Council President is a plant, and that all of this is a put-on for Haruhi’s benefit, which strikes me as funny still, especially when Haruhi falls for it so completely. But also interesting are the articles that the SOS members write for the ‘zines. All of them are included for your reading pleasure. All are amusing and/or sad, but Kyon’s is a love story in three parts, and that’s what really kept me going throughout the story.

I still really like this, and I’m still flying through every volume. The next three are one long story, and I’m dying to read them. It’s going to be hard to spread them out over a year and a half, because I suspect the story is epic. Hopefully there’ll be more volumes that come out in Japan in the meantime!

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