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WIP Paper Cranes by Spontaneite - T - Hikaru no Go

Discussion in 'Other Review Board' started by illya_, Nov 11, 2017.

  1. illya_

    illya_ First Year

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2015
    Messages:
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    Title: Paper Cranes
    Author: Spontaneite
    Rating: T
    Fandom: Hikaru no Go
    Category: Supernatural
    Status: WIP, 21 chapters, 190k words
    Links: FF (first 3 chapters), AO3(All but the most recent chapter), Tumblr (All chapters)
    (When a new chapter is added to tumblr, the old one is tweaked and added to AO3. They are tweaked further before being added to FF)
    Summary: Two years passed before Hikaru admitted, reluctantly, that possession by a spirit seemed to have long-lasting side effects which probably wouldn't go away on their own.

    The story takes place place after the end of the series. Hikaru are dealing with emotional issues because of things that happened at the later part of the series (volume 16 in the manga, episode 60 of the anime).

    I personally think that you won't really enjoy the series unless you've seen/read the series, since part of the charm is the personality of the old cast being intact. Another reason is that the reader is assumed to know a thing or two about the world and the people in it.

    One of the more interesting aspects of the story is that, for me at least, it doesn't do what you are expecting of it (at least after reading the first chapter). I'm being vague on purpose to avoid spoiling the experience. I recommend people giving it three chapters (The better parts of the story comes later, but by that chapter you will start to get an idea about things to come).

    The strength of the story does not lay only in the plot, but also in how it is presented. Hikaru feels like his normal self, making bullshit excuses for everything out of habit and amusement. The support characters also feel like their canon self (with some notable exceptions, Akari is presented way more... assertive? The relationship with Yashiro seems stronger etc.. but it can all be explained with the cast being teenagers, which are prone to changing, as well as over a year ( ? ) having gone by since the end of the story).

    Also, while Go is ever present in the story, it is reduced to background noise when the plot calls for it (but the story is still about Hikaru, so he will managed to sneak games in, no matter what).

    I'm not gonna write any more, since I really don't wanna spoil the story. Good HnG stories are impossible to find, especially ones that are being actively written.

    For me it is a clear 5/5.
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2017
  2. Plotless

    Plotless Groundskeeper

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    Wait I was just about to post this for review.

    Fantastic fic, 5/5. I'll write a proper review when I'm not on my phone.
    --- Post automerged ---
    The thing that I like the most about this story is how natural the writing and the tone of the story is - Hikaru feels like a sixteen year old boy and at no point do I read his narration and think that this is out of character for Hikaru to say. The side characters are also well defined - Touya and Yashiro especially shine, but characters who in the manga felt less interesting like Hikaru's mum and to a certain extent Akari get to be fully fledged.

    The plot is good and the different subplots are clearly defined easy to follow - Hikaru's growing skill at Go, the Kisei tournament, his learning about Shinto, and the main plot which I won't spoil.

    This is easily the best story in the Hikaru no Go fandom, and not just because of the lack of material - It's just good.
     
  3. Republic

    Republic The Snow Queen Prestige DLP Supporter

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    Is familiarity with source necessary to read this?
     
  4. EsperJones

    EsperJones Order Member

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    It's pretty accessible if you only know the major strokes, but complete unfamiliarity with the source material would probably lead to confusion. I watched HnG a long time ago and didn't remember much but had no issues jumping in.

    A wiki read of the main characters might be sufficient.
     
  5. Plotless

    Plotless Groundskeeper

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    You might need to read the wiki entries on some characters and you'll have no clue who Sai is who's pretty important but doesn't appear, but I'm pretty sure it's easy enough to grasp the story from the text.
     
  6. Vira

    Vira Order Member

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    Just a really excellent fic. It took the Hikaru no Go story into a direction I like seeing, while keeping up the original go-centered storyline. I'm also glad that while an arc has just ended and technically, the fic could end here, looks like this was only the first arc and the story will be continuing.

    Can't wait to see where it goes.

    5/5.
     
  7. Celestin

    Celestin Half-Blood Prince

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    I really like it for all the reasons mentioned above. It certainly has an unusual premise where the go is kind of a secondary yet very important theme, but it works very well.

    My only minor complain would be that I would expect a little less blunt behaviour from Akari considering what happened to Hikaru, but maybe it's how she handles this.

    As good as this fic is, I would argue that The Neverending Road is better.
     
  8. throwaawy

    throwaawy Second Year

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2014
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    havng read through about 15 chapters so far i think this does have its own charm.

    as most people have pointed out, troll!hikaru really does feel like mid-canon and more importantly, a teenager. the spirituality angle is a bit jarring to start with but it's slowly growing on me

    TNR is a better straight continuation imo, with a better feeling to the matches that take place and a larger focus on go itself. but even that said, even if Paper Cranes is a bit more casual with the matches i like how here hikaru is not nearly so dominant in his games since it feels like a more natural progression.

    continuing to read but a tentative 3-4/5 so far
     
  9. Koalas

    Koalas Dark Lord DLP Supporter

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    I think it's far to say this and TNR are the best continuations in the fandom. Now HnG has two plot lines. Hikaru's development as a Go player and Hikaru and Sai's relationship.

    TNR focuses far more on Hikaru's development and the techical aspect of Go. PC takes the Sai relationship and runs with it's implacations.

    They both have their strong suits but PC is excellent for its flow and recency. It's the first fanfic I can remember in a long time that I read obsessively. 5/5 would experience again.
     
  10. Nemrut

    Nemrut The Black Mage Prestige

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    I am halfway through and I have to agree, it is really fun and engaging so far. The new priest is great and fits so wonderfully inside this world that it is hard to imagine HnG without him at this point. The take on all the canon chars is excellent and this very well may be the best take on Akari I have seen so far, and I include canon in that where she was kinda slowly but surely phased out and became more demure but here she is still a very strong and important presence in his life and I love that. Always felt it was kinda a shame that she wasn't involved more in the manga as her only amateur/hobby interest in Go meant that she wouldn't be as involved in it but that also meant that they really drifted apart.

    Here, their friendship is too strong for that to happen and while Akari gives him his space for Go, she also still maintains their friendship and drags Shindo into it kicking and screaming and you really feel that Shindo immensely values that.

    However, there is one thing that kinda mars this read for me, at least so far and maybe that is a bit of an unfair or unreasonable complaint. Koalas is right that there are two main focuses in the manga and that this fanfic mainly deals with Sai. But the way it chose to do so kinda forces it to go into the supernatural aspects and I am not sure how well that fits the source material. Because now the fic has to make up rules and laws regarding the whole supernatural stuff. How does that work, is there other stuff and so on. The fic does a solid enough job of that and as I said, I love the grumpy priest char. However, it introduces something into that story that I don't think was ever really meant to be there and something that is kinda breaking the setting a bit.

    Because now there are other spirits, and of course there have to be now. Malevolent spirits from which Hikaru has to protect himself and the consequences of possession and all that jazz. And suddenly the Go part becomes automatically diminished because, well, one is just a game/job and the other is his life and family being threatened by supernatural whatever.

    I kinda liked the handwave-y approach to Sai. That Sai's existence may mean that other spirits and mythological aspects being true but who didn't really matter since Sai was the only one Shindo was going to interact with. There may be a whole paranormal world out there but as far Shindo is concerned, that aspect really only mattered as far as Sai and Go. Everything else didn't really matter. Go was the most important thing. There were no things like struggling with poverty, sickness, death (except for Sai at the end) and physical enemies because Go was the most important thing in this universe and most problems could kinda be solved with that.

    And the supernatural stuff kinda sidelined Go, even when the fic focuses on Go in parts, it's still kinda overshadowed by the fact that Shindo has to deal with parts of his soul missing and the danger he is in because there is other stuff there that can harm him. All things considered, the story does a remarkable job in balancing all these things and maybe it is just me, but while I liked the quest for Sai and the stuff with the priest, I think I would have liked it if things had scaled back a bit on that front. Like, the business with the master who is kinda possessed by his sword demon felt really out of place to me.

    That said, not yet finished so my opinion may change.

    Still, 4.5/5 so far.
     
  11. illya_

    illya_ First Year

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    Since we plunged into the meat of the story in the comments I figure I throw in an extra cent or two.

    @Nemrut - Your points are valid. The story is clearly focusing on its AU parts. Which might not be what a HnG fan would want.
    I remember wanting more Go when the malevolent spirits first showed up, but at some point I found myself being fine with Go taking a backseat during the the 'situation'. I really hope the focus will switch back to Go sometime in the future though.

    I'm still not sure how to suggest the story to HnG fans. Saying "it might not have as much Go as you want/expect" might dissuade most fans? And mentioning that the story gives a lot of focus on spirits feels like spoiling the story.

    Now that the strongest evil spirit out there have been destroyed, hikaru would probably be able to focus more on his one true love (Go).

    However there are still other supernatural thingies that might sidetrack him again (but hopefully they will be more like sidejobs):
    - Ongoing quest to find Sai (Aka spreading the word of Go).
    - Dealing with Touya (who seems to 'feel' different than others).
    - Japan needs an exorcist, and the old one was killed. Que Shindo donning the mantle.
    - Whatever else the humongous damage to his soul will result in (more sensing, more evil spirits etc?)
     
  12. Erandil

    Erandil Headmaster

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    Yeah, unlike most here I didn't really like this story that much. The beginning was interesting enough but the ever increasing focus on the supernatural as well as how that affected Hikaru meant the more I read the less I enjoyed it till I finally abandoned it around chapter 6-7. It is executed well enough and I understand why people who like the genre might love this but I was far more interested in the non-supernatural stuff and cast which sadly diminished with each chapter.