The Intrigues of Haruhi Suzumiya is the seventh novel published in the light novel series about Haruhi Suzumiya.
The Intrigues of Haruhi Suzumiya
Written by: Nagaru Tanigawa
Publisher: Kadokawa Corporation
English Publisher: Yen On
Release Date: April 20, 2021
This volume of the series focuses on one overarching story, which is set up with a prologue that finally shows Kyon going back to December 18th in order to complete what was left unfinished at the end of The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya. This was a loose end that had been left hanging over the previous two volumes of the series, so I was happy to see that this loose end was finally wrapped up.
But it turns out that Kyon finally accomplishing this task leads into the story that’s told during The Intrigues of Haruhi Suzumiya. We get another time travel story, but this time, Asahina is sent back in time to eight days earlier but isn’t told why she was sent back. Kyon is the only person in the club room when the Asahina from eight days in the future appears in the club room’s storage closet, and he learns from this Asahina that it was Kyon eight days in the future who sent her back in time without any explanation. The Kyon in the current time is just as confused as the newly arrived Asahina, because he has no idea why she was sent back… even though it was his future self that sent her here.
Kyon starts finding notes in his shoe locker, which are from the older Asahina from the future. At first, the notes tell him and the Asahina that came from eight days in the future to do things that seem to be random, such as setting up a prank that causes a man to injure his foot. Since the Asahina from eight days in the future knows what’s going to happen over the next few days, she’s able to tell Kyon some details about what should be occurring. With this information, Kyon discovers that some of the things he’s supposed to do coincide with events that he is supposed to be doing with the SOS Brigade, so he needs to enlist Nagato’s help to make sure that particular pairings happen so he can more easily get away and do what he needs to do with the Asahina from eight days in the future. Kyon also has to make sure that the two Asahinas don’t run into each other.
One thing I’ve liked seeing with these later volumes of the Haruhi Suzumiya novels is the fact that Tsuruya becomes a more important character. It’s especially intriguing in this volume to see hints that perhaps Tsuruya may know more about the SOS Brigade than she’s letting on. If that’s the case, then it’s awesome to see there’s much more to her than what we saw in the anime, since the anime adaptation didn’t get this far into the novel series. Let’s be honest a minute. In the anime, Tsuruya generally felt like she was just kind of “there.”
This volume also makes references to and has Kyon run into a character that was introduced in The Wavering of Haruhi Suzumiya. In the previous volume, it was hinted that this character would become someone important in the future. It turns out that we learn a little more about why this particular character will become an important person when they get older, and that reason ties in with Asahina and her future.
The volume also introduces an enemy for Asahina’s organization. Considering that Yuki’s group has an enemy, it shouldn’t be surprising that Asahina’s organization would also have one. We never learn the name of this organization, or the names of any of its members, but they become important for the climax of the story. It turns out this group was hinted at in The Wavering of Haruhi Suzumiya, but we only learn this when Kyon recognizes the vehicle the group is traveling in during this volume matches the one he saw in the previous volume. And characters from Koizumi’s organization, who had only previously appeared in the summer vacation and winter vacation stories, play an important role in this climax as well.
At the end of The Intrigues of Haruhi Suzumiya, the older Asahina from the future can only share a little bit of what she knows to explain the things she had Kyon do, but at least she can finally say a little more than just, “That’s classified.”
Even though this is primarily Kyon and Asahina’s story, we can’t forget to mention that Haruhi is still part of it. On top of trying to help the Asahina that came from eight days in the future, Kyon finds himself feeling concerned for Haruhi, because she doesn’t quite seem to be acting like her normal self. But it turns out that one of the strange things that the older Asahina from the future asks Kyon to do ties in with something that Haruhi is up to. I thought this was a good twist, as well as a great way bring Haruhi into this storyline. It had been mentioned a few times in this volume what month this story was taking place in, and I probably should have picked up on the twist from that information, but I hadn’t.
When I finished reading The Intrigues of Haruhi Suzumiya, I found that I had enjoyed it. The story was riveting, and the references to earlier events in the series were also a nice touch. I also appreciate that at this point in the light novel series, the stories are now being told in chronological order, unlike earlier in the series, where the novels jumped around during a certain segment of time, and it was up to the reader to try to figure out where stories fit into the timeline. And from what’s said in the Afterword, it appears that the next volume will continue telling the story chronologically. At this point in the series, it’s hard to believe that Kyon and the others have almost made it through an entire school year.
And after reading this light novel, I found myself wishing that the stories in these later volumes of the series could somehow be adapted for a new anime adaptation of Haruhi Suzumiya. The anime that exists is nice, but it’s only telling part of the story. With these later volumes, especially this one and The Wavering of Haruhi Suzumiya, the story is moving into new territory. I suspect that the rival organization for Asahina’s group will likely appear again at some point later in the series, and there’s the potential for them to add another layer to the world of Haruhi Suzumiya and the SOS Brigade. I would highly recommend that fans of the Haruhi Suzumiya anime read the light novel series so they can see what adventures these characters have beyond what’s depicted in the anime adaptation.
Additional posts about Haruhi Suzumiya:
- Light Novel Review: The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya
- Light Novel Review: The Sigh of Haruhi Suzumiya
- Light Novel Review: The Boredom of Haruhi Suzumiya
- Light Novel Review: The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya
- Light Novel Review: The Rampage of Haruhi Suzumiya
- Light Novel Review: The Wavering of Haruhi Suzumiya