Reviews for The Coin
phirethorn8 chapter 3 . 11/8/2022
I love the symbolism of the opposite electron and proton hurtling towards each other for the attraction between a male and female. Very appropriate for this fandom and surprisingly romantic.
Guest chapter 5 . 4/16/2022
vim vs emacs moment
Guest chapter 4 . 12/22/2021
I... honestly am not sure I can put what's wrong with this fic into words but I'll try. Things just don't make sense. This being a Haruhi fic I thought maybe this is some 5D story that I just don't quite get - and maybe it is - but I'm gonna stop reading anyway cause if it is a super-complicated 5D plot then I don't follow, and if it isn't then things just make zero sense.
First is how Haruhi's use of her powers is just ignored by everyone. People just don't behave like this. Everyone is like, OK, and carries on like nothing of importance happened. It made me suspect that Haruhi is subconsciously making people behave the way she expects them to even if it's unrealistic - it doesn't matter how little curiosity someone has, this kind of thing just isn't something to be dismissed. People were lifted from their chairs by some unseen force and you just expect everyone to go "yeah OK", including these very people? That's bullshit. I'm not saying everyone should react like Haruhi, "ooh shiny magic, time to investigate" but you can't just expect many people to not react at all, this makes zero sense!
Then there's this bit with Taniguchi that another reviewer brought up - let's say for the sake of the argument that he is a small-minded, uninspired dullard without even a trace of curiosity. That doesn't change the fact that he should be afraid of Haruhi, not... acting like whatever that is. If I was feeling charitable I'd attribute it to something like "subconsciously uneasy with something that doesn't fit the established model of reality" except he doesn't come off this way either.
It all feels like bullshit, and I'm done trying to imagine there's some secret big-brain 5D plot behind it all. Dropped.
cloudfields chapter 11 . 5/25/2020
The only complaint I can really give is that quite a few quotation marks are missing, to the point that I frequently wonder whether or not a character is reacting to something Haruhi said, or if they are guessing and reacting to silence caused by Haruhi thinking.

With that out of the way, I have read this story a few years ago. After re-reading it, I can say that this story is part of the .5% of fanfiction. The writing is good, but the best part was the characterization. The thought put into how each character reacts to their situations is higher level compared to other stories I have read.
catnaplap chapter 11 . 5/10/2020
This is excellent.
Pokemonster2 chapter 11 . 3/30/2020
Good job, I really liked this fanfic.

I think a part of what I liked about it was the discovery Haruhi had of herself and how she ended more introspective and then at the end chose a direction and to do things without her power even when she could.
Martin III chapter 3 . 3/14/2020
While this fic has some very impressive prose, it suffers from an abundance of plot holes and credibility issues, starting with the entire premise: Why, after wielding her powers for four years, after dismissing cherry blossoms falling out of season and being seated behind her best friend three times out of three as pleasant coincidences, after deciding to accept a whole adventure in a supernatural disappearing mansion as a mirage, does the manifestation of her powers now lead Haruhi to an unwavering certainty that she has encountered the paranormal?

Other such issues:

1) Why does Haruhi feel she needs to resort to fraud to get a few coins? Every time she's needed money before, she just got it from Kyon or dug into the literary club budget.

2) Why does no one, not even Kyon, point out to Haruhi that she could perform the exact same experiment by simply re-inserting the same coin 300 times?

3) Why are the rest of the SOS Brigade so completely caught off-guard when Haruhi starts using her powers in public? Even if they didn't know a thing about her this would make no sense, so why is Kyon, who supposedly knows Haruhi pretty well, so shocked that Haruhi opts to actually use her powers once she realizes she has them?

4) Koizumi et al have repeatedly said that Haruhi discovering her powers is a worst-case scenario, so why are all the various alien, esper, and time traveler factions doing absolutely nothing about it?

5) Why, after the demonstrations she's been giving, does Haruhi not immediately realize that she wished Kyon into her house, even saying "People don't just blink out of existence in one place and reappear in another" like she hasn't just been doing exactly that sort of thing?

6) Why did Kyon lie about Haruhi teleporting him into her house if he was just going to outright ask her why she teleported him into her house?

7) The reflection on Haruhi's dating history gave me the impression that your image of lesbians is wholly based on what you've seen in anime. Believe it or not, most lesbians have more dignity than to approach girls who are by all reports heterosexual and directly ask them out on a date. And there aren't that many lesbians in middle school to begin with; people don't usually identify as homosexual until they've hit puberty.

8) With regard to the final scene of chapter 2, I've never bought into the cliche that if Joe Ordinary sees someone with a gun, he will run for his life, but if he sees someone with arcane powers that could reduce him to ash with the wave of a hand, he will try to goad them into a fight. The characters' behavior, most obviously Taniguchi commenting on the Haruhi/Kyon romance as if the idea were completely new to him, are inconsistent with the light novels. This entire scene feels like a generic X-Men story (calling a person with powers a "freak", the supportive normal who stands up against his hatemongering friend, the involuntary violent use of powers, etc.) with the names of the Haruhi Suzumiya cast inserted into it.

9) Why, having accepted that she has subconscious powers, does Haruhi never question whether things like the disappearing mansion were more than just natural phenomena?

Haruhi's anonymous altruism in the prologue is an authentic Haruhi moment. She has no interest in gratitude or moral well-being; indeed, gratitude makes her uncomfortable. She does good for the pure and simple desire to see things work out well. I feel much the same way myself, so I greatly enjoy seeing this particularly sympathetic trait of Haruhi's being depicted even more eloquently than it is in the source material. The girls being complete strangers is key, since it emphasizes how universal her essential compassion is. If the prologue were a standalone short I'd have nothing but praise for it. (Well... except for the line "And don't start with your message with 'I need you' and expected not to be misunderstood." That's something Taniguchi might say, but not Kyon, especially not when talking to Haruhi. Haruhi is not just a piece of meat to him.) It sets a simple, clear cut scene which shows Haruhi's character in a meaningful way.

As mentioned already, the prose is generally impressive, though the imitation of Tanigawa's quoteless speech is clumsy. There's a lot more to Tanigawa's technique than simply writing regular dialogue and then removing the quotation marks from the perspective character's lines, and I don't think it makes sense to apply the technique to Haruhi anyway. That aside, the sentences flow well, the descriptions are concise, and the pacing feels natural and confident.

As far as characterizations go, Haruhi is mostly okay, but there are many instances where her depiction corresponds to the first book rather than to where her character grew well before The Surprise (which this fic is explicitly set after), e.g. the charity con, trying to convince herself she's a lesbian, wishing for Taniguchi to die. Moreover, her groveling for romantic attention in chapter 2 (telling Kyon, after he's made clear he has no desire to ask her out, that if he asked her out she would say yes and never dump him, and later continuing to come on to him after he physically rebuffs her) doesn't correspond to her character anywhere in the source material. And your portrayal of Kyon as suave, witty, and sage is inconsistent with his canon depiction as sullen, snarky, and small-minded, and doesn't seem like a valid projection of how his character might develop.

The scene with Haruhi's father is also odd. If Haruhi is comfortable with telling her father whatever random thought pops into her mind, then why her obvious need for a confidant at the beginning of The Melancholy?

The use of honorifics is distracting. While I didn't notice as many errors as in most fics which use them, they're still a reminder that I'm reading a fanfic.

I don't think I'll be reading the rest of this fic. The biggest problem with having this many major logic problems is that it gives the impression that the fic's events are being dictated by authorial whim rather than by the characters and the world they inhabit, and whether that impression is correct or incorrect, it makes it impossible to be invested in the story.
Anonymous chapter 11 . 1/26/2020
That was amazing! 11/10
If you told me Nagaru Tanigawa wrote this himself, I would probably believe it. It's that good.
It always felt kind of "dragged on" that the entire point of the series was either cleaning up the damage she unintentionally and ironically caused, or the adventures concerning her antics that were also ironically made more interesting from the perspective of anybody but her (while keeping her oblivious to everything). She was an interesting character in the original series, but instead of feeling like a person lost in her own maze of mystery, she just felt like that shiny briefcase everybody wanted for their own different gain. This story ties all the knots in the best possible ways (albeit maybe with a few questions, but those were all self-contained anomalies).
Finally making her a bit more than a plot-driving background quirk is an achievement in and of itself, especially that twist ending. Not one of the characters feels OOC, her actions feel like they should, and it adds up to the rest of the series.
If the series had any possible way of ending on a high note, this is it. The only thing I regret is not seeing Koizumi's character arc have a better conclusion than a simple "I hate it, but I want it anyway."
And I kind of still wonder what Kyon's real name is, I probably would have ended it with them sitting in that cafe, talking and: "So what's your actual name? [fade to credits ambiguity]"
m3m3nt0v1v3r3 chapter 11 . 8/22/2019
Open on a dusty Amtrak Vermonter, hurdling from the depressed New England college town where I am underpaid to teach the children of the overpaid. It is a six hour trip, already delayed, and the air conditioning in my car is busted. A few hours into the trip, using the last of my monthly data, I happen upon this story and when my train finally pulls into Washington in the dead of night, I find myself disappointed at the prospect of putting my phone away.

I love fan fiction, but I can rarely stomach a long story all the way through. Poor characterization is usually the main culprit. Some of what I perceive as unfaithful characterization is, certainly, the disconnect between how I see the characters and how the fic author sees the characters-that's usually unavoidable. But mostly, I think it's a desire to see the characters act in a way that hasn't yet been warranted. Character is dynamic, and a plot is the narration of that dynamism, but few authors-both amateur and professional-grasp that intuitively. Every moment of a character's existence must be justified by previous moments, either narrated or assumed (if we're at the beginning of the story), and must justify future moments, in order for there to be consistent, realistic, and above all, satisfying characterization.

That's all to say-I never found myself turned off by your depiction of the characters. In fact, I think it was eminently faithful to the source material and internally consistent. You manage the enviable feat of taking characters you did not create and guiding them through significant developments, leaving the reader with characters who feel like grown, developed, contoured versions of the originals. It's feats like this that make sifting through the motley crowd of fannish dreams worthwhile (to me, at least).

Another issue I have with a lot of fan fiction again starts with the author-I think fan fiction, unlike original fiction, requires a certain amount of authorial self-effacement. The author can never erase themselves completely, but most fan fiction probably requires that the author show some restraint, in order to maintain the feel of the original material (this assumes, of course, that one reads as I do-out of a desire for more of the original material and, more accurately, out of a Haruhistic desire for an alternate universe that conforms to what I wanted out of the original material; other people read differently and I cannot speak for them).

I think you show that restraint and, what's more, this story reveals how productive that restraint can be. By limiting yourself to Haruhi's POV (and capturing her voice with nigh-perfection, as far as I'm concerned; this might actually be the most impressive thing about the story, since Kyon's voice is so dominant in the original) and constructing the story around events and places from the original material, you give us a radical new take on what we already know and love, all of it captured faithfully. The seed of everything in this story, I'd argue-from the themes to the characterization to Haruhi's final choice-is already present in the original, and as a result, The Coin feels very much like a natural outgrowth.

Indeed, looking through the reviews, it seems some people were disappointed with the ending, but I thought it eminently appropriate: it echoes the choice Kyon makes in Disappearance, and speaks to the themes that cut through the original material and this story. It resolves the crisis that drives the plot, and emblematizes Haruhi's development. Maybe I'd have liked Kyon and Haruhi to finally jump into bed, but I am, fundamentally, a pervert.

This review is coming almost eight years after this story's completion. You've continued to write fan fiction. Good, I say. Maybe I'll read some of it-I've been on an EVA kick ever since the Netflix debut. I do hope, however, that you're writing original fiction (if that's what you want; if not, ignore this-you already do a great service to parched fans thirsting for good writing): you already demonstrate good control of tone and pacing; you can write consistent characters and narrate their development in a believable way; you understand the importance of establishing and developing themes without allowing them to dominate or feel artificial; you have a good ear for voice; and you can maintain all these elements over hundreds of pages. It's impressive work, it's good fiction, and these are rare things. I'd hope, selfishly, you push yourself to try something original because the creation of original characters is the most challenging part of writing good fiction and the most rewarding for the reader. But maybe you already have and it's simply languishing, unjustifiably though predictably, in some agent's slush pile. No matter-vita brevis, ars longa.
Spooths chapter 11 . 3/6/2019
I wonder if Haruhi is immortal. I'd guess so.
Spooths chapter 3 . 3/5/2019
Haruhi likes Kyon but is also totally gay for Mikuru. Noice.
Bergholt Stuttley Johnson chapter 11 . 2/4/2019
One of the biggest attractions of the Haruhi Suzumiya series is that the characters behave in a consistent manner. Up until Snow mountain syndrome that is.

Their thoughts can be followed, motivations guessed at and double guessed,but they always look real.

I didn't find any other series with such a good first person smart-ass in the years since.
And the number of good fanfics vanishingly small.

You managed to capture Haruhi and Kyon's character.
The boundless confidence,the crippling insecurities and the fridge realization that once again,the universe almost ended due to one bad day.
And within it all, the characters still continue to develop.

I loved the Maths jokes and references, especially considering how they count as valid avenues of discussion for the SOS brigade.
And the 'quantum resonance' tract which is a nice way of introducing chaos theory without making readers trip up.
A Fan chapter 5 . 9/13/2018
So far I have seen references to Detective Conan, Madoka Magica and I THINK two others. You sir really do know how to insert clever and hilarious references near seamlessly. Good stuff.
a passing snail chapter 11 . 5/10/2018
This is really wonderful, thank you for writing this! I always thought that for all the stories that revolve around Haruhi, it's such a shame we don't often get a good look at her inner world. You've brought her and everyone else to life in such a way, I almost wouldn't mind if Tanigawa never writes another word about them. Initially I expected this to turn tragic (and as a character she kind of is...or rather, could be), and at times that's how I thought it would end. But I'm so happy you gave Haruhi the chance to grow in this way. Also her unfiltered-by-Kyon's-POV sass is a lot of fun; seeing the flipside of their usual interaction rounds out their relationship rather nicely.
spaulding96 chapter 11 . 2/11/2018
You made Haruhi proud.
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