Reviews for Elementary, My Dear Natsuki
TypoThread chapter 1 . 1/11
hand-delivered by a messenger boy rather than in the past - hand-delivered by a messenger boy rather than in the pOst
Syein chapter 1 . 11/30/2014
I finished watching mai-hime, and now I finally drop by your Mai-Hime fic.
I read the story and was a bit surprised to see how Natsuki and I are so similar. I guess those detective Conan manga didn't help me much (pretty sure I have a big question mark on my head the entire time during the story). When I read detective novel, I would usually skimmed the deduction part and went straight to the ending for the answer...(totally understood Natsuki's frustration-excepted I hate cigarette) :x
I love mystery and such, but wow, I totally let the characters do the work for me.
Guest chapter 1 . 12/5/2013
The question is, why did you stop writing?
WeirdRaptor chapter 4 . 11/25/2013
Yeah, I figured it had to be Mr. Clark. It could have been Arthur, I guess, but he'd have to have been rock stupid to murder his dad if he was set to inherit the family business.
xx Catty xx chapter 4 . 2/9/2013
Finally I got to this series! C: And I can say with complete certainty that this first story of series was a very interesting read! Although I must say it's very difficult to imagine Shizuru as a —Āonsulting detective with Sherlock-Holmesian talent for 'deduction'. In my opinion, even though Shizuru is my favorite character from Mai-Hime, still this role does not suit her, because canon Shizuru was very intelligent, but she definitely was not a mastermind or a genius. She always was being manipulated by someone (in Mai-Hime she was just a pawn in the hands of Obsidian Lord, in Mai-Otome also she was being manipulated by Tomoe). In my opinion, the role of a detective is more suited for Natsuki, although also not as a detective with Holmesian deduction, but rather as a detective of Noir type C:
Golden Mean Fallacy chapter 1 . 1/28/2013
I've been meaning to review this series ever since I read it, since I do feel that it deserves a solid, comprehensive critique. But let me get this out of the way first- I'm the opposite of most of the people that probably read this- I've never seen My-HiMe or its sequels (although that is something that I plan on doing), but I am a big fan of Conan Doyle's Holmes stories and love seeing other people's take on them. After seeing this series advertised in your profile, I decided to check it out, since typically not knowing the source material doesn't hurt one's enjoyment of AUs much anyway. So, I'll be looking at this series less from the perspective of a Hime fan, and more just from a general writing standpoint.

Let's start with what I liked, because there is plenty to talk about. From what I've seen, you seem far more comfortable writing third person than first, so I'm incredibly impressed with how well you did in this first(?) outing. You did a great job at adapting Conan Doyle's writing style, yet still making it your own. You do a great job at really adding color to Natsuki's recollections, and giving us an excellent view of what's really going on in her head, yet leaving a good deal to the imagination. The first-person narration manages to have plenty of callbacks to Sherlock, while never feeling particularly derivitive.

The writing itself is in general pretty solid; perhaps it lacks description here and there, but in general you do a good job at painting enough of a picture that I can follow along. The amount of references you managed to splice into the story almost seamlessly is quite impressive, and really shows how big a fan you are of Doyle's work. The only glitch I found is the discussion with the beggar in Chapter 2- you did a great job at the dialect, but I couldn't quite follow the train of dialogue my first time through; I'm pretty sure that it isn't the manner of speech, given how easily I was able to follow the rest of the fic. Unfortunately, I can't pinpoint the exact problem either.

Your use of language on a whole is very good- it's a pleasant surprise given how accustomed I am to you writing Japanese works, but you manage to capture Victorian language quite well. The characters speak in a realistic fashion, and you do a very solid job- from what I can tell- of keeping out anachronisms and things that just wouldn't make sense for Victorian englishwomen (and men) to say, especially for an author living in the 21st century.

Onto the characterization- I'm honestly surprised at how great it is, given how in most Sherlock adaptations, the characterization is honestly the weakest point. Natsuki is a great Watson- she seems to be perfectly intelligent, charming, witty (Natsuki's thoughts and commentary are often a joy to read) and most importantly has a life outside the confines of the story. Just as the reader got swept into Shizuru's world, you can really feel the same thing happening to her. She works fantastically as an author avatar. There are plenty of things that this story really makes me wonder about Natsuki that don't get resolved, but instead of making the story feel incomplete, it acts as a solid sequel hook that Doyle's works really didn't have.

Shizuru, however, definitely steals the show. One of the biggest difficulties of a Sherlock Holmes adaptation is creating Sherlock. The writers either make him completely unlikable, or far too generic. Here, you strike a perfect balance- while you can understand how Shizuru's behavior and mannerisms could be incredibly irritating, I found it a blast reading her. For one thing, you actually bothered to make her her own character. While there are plenty of similarities to Holmes (which I'll get to in a second), she still has her own mannerisms, a radically different sense of humor, and her own tastes that both make her interesting and keep Shizuru from feeling like a Holmes clone.

That said, Shizuru is obviously still based on Sherlock. She clearly intelligent (and it takes talent to really manage to make Holmes look smart enough that it doesn't feel like an informed attribute), and you definitely captured Holmes' egotism and aloofness, which really makes the character an excellent blend of inspiration and original creation.

Now, for the few problems that I had.

Overall, the characters that aren't Natsuki and Shizuru end up feeling rather... flat. This is understandable- it's not a particularly long story and we're seeing everything from Natsuki's POV- but it's still there. The writing works great overall, but there are a few places where the word choice doesn't quite seem to gel (I won't give examples simply because this review is going to be long enough as it is) and the lines feel a bit clunky.

My other main complaint is really the mystery itself. Don't get me wrong, it's an intelligent mystery and quite solidly told. But it still feels rather... pedestrian. There's really nothing in particular that makes it stand out and everything really flows in a somewhat predictable fashion- Shizuru goes to the scene, quickly pieces some stuff together, chats with the culprit (and a couple other characters), figures everything out, and then we have our sum-up. I don't think it helps that I'm a big fan of the classic Golden Age "The killer is YOU, sir!" type of reveal and confrontation with the responsible party (which, to be fair, you say you are as well) rather than the Holmesian sum-up after-the-fact. It just feels more emotional and real when you actually get some kind of confrontation, and see the culprit's side of the story. Which may play a role in why this mystery ended up feeling rather flat to me, but it did.

On a whole, though, those problems were more incidental than anything. The character and writing quibbles didn't stop me from greatly enjoying the story, and truly the mystery is more incidental to the story which is really about the meeting and initial interactions between Shizuru and Natsuki, and that is told quite excellently. Besides, I've always found a Study in Scarlet to be one of Holmes' weaker works, and if I were to rank the adaptations of "Sherlock" and "Watson's" meeting that I've seen, this one is definitely near the top.

I could probably think of more to say, but this is already an incredibly long write-up. So, on a whole, this is an incredibly good story that I thoroughly enjoyed. Cheers.
Guest chapter 4 . 9/1/2012
nice fic . . :D
Fangshen Gin chapter 1 . 7/27/2012
Whoa- this story is pretty cool so far.
Michael S. Repton chapter 2 . 7/26/2012
Wow - a really good mystery and clues, too, and those are very hard to invent. Shizuru really has the Sherlock manner down perfectly, while still being completely in her own character. And "Vamberry the Wine Merchant" is a delicious in-joke. Love this story so much :)
Michael S. Repton chapter 1 . 7/26/2012
I can't believe what I just read. The characterisation is brilliantly written and fits perfectly into the Sherlock Holmes mould, managing to create a gripping and entertaining opening that is at the same time hilariously funny - mostly just because it's hard to believe this could be made to work. I have to read the whole story now to see whether the rest is as good as this!
laneige-girl chapter 1 . 7/23/2012
how did i miss this fic ever?
i love sherlock holmes movies and started reading the novel too :)
gonna move on to the next chapter now XD XD XD
jo-Kaon17 chapter 4 . 5/26/2012
i never read mystery stories, but this one sure is great...
oOYuuOo chapter 4 . 2/22/2012
I really enjoyed reading it!

Thank you so much for this! I wanna read the Sherlock homes series now. xD
Wolf-of-Five-Elements chapter 4 . 2/21/2012
Oh... great story! I can't believe I didn't read this earlier. ) I like how you kept the interactions between the characters like the ones between their anime counterparts and the... Victorian? ... tone and feel of your story. I look forward to reading more of this series.
dagomir chapter 4 . 2/18/2012
Though not a fan of detective stories, I'm going to stay with you for the rest of the series :) It was quite good read (well, until the mention of "The Purloined Letter" which brought memories of Literature classes when we had a separate sub-course on perception in and of writing .)
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