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The latest instalment in the increasingly moribund Haruhi series, The Surprise of Haruhi Suzumiya, has finally been dated.

The “Surprise” is two-fold – firstly, that the novel is being released at all, having already been delayed for 4 years, and secondly, that it is apparently getting a “worldwide simultaneous release in 13 countries.”

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“Surprise” will actually be split into two novels, at a lengthy (for “juvenile novels,” as their English publisher appropriately refers to them) 600 pages in all, released simultaneously on the 25th of May, 2011.

More surprising is the announcement that the simultaneous release will supposedly be across 13 countries, something of a first for a light novel.

There is some suspicion that the novels are actually complete or nearly so, and that the release is being held back to give time for the translation – although there is equally as much suspicion that they will be delayed again.

However, the announcement of a global release is distinctly odd – the English releases so far are only up to Rampage (due in June 2011), so the “simultaneous global release” is already taking on an air of farce – why release the latest novel in a series before any of the preceding novels have even been translated?

This is all particularly bizarre when “Surprise” will be the 10th and 11th novels in the series, and “Rampage” only the 5th, and due the month after Surprise.

Coming from the creators of Endless Eight however, such marketing genius is perhaps to be expected.

With the number of delays the novels have so far incurred (this announcement is actually the result of a slyly worded promise “for a big announcement before the end of the year”), fans can of course be forgiven for wondering whether they will really be released this time anyway, and more importantly, whether they will have been worth the wait.


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