Recent Entries 
29th-Jun-2012 12:29 pm Absence by Serrende (T/PG-13)
Pairing: None, gen
Length: ~115k
Author on LJ: [ profile] serrende
Author Website: Profile on FF.Net
Why this must be read: This fic ... oh my gosh this fic. Thinking about it here and now, for this rec, brings tears to my eyes. And they are perhaps strange tears, because they are neither entirely tears of sadness or tears of joy, but both mingled together. But then, such is the nature of this fic itself. Quite frankly, I somewhat debated whether to rec one of the author's other works instead of something this heavy, but ultimately I knew I really couldn't choose anything else, that it had to be this one.

What you may have begun to suspect: yes. It is a death-fic. (Or, as even the author suggests might be more accurate, a "grief-fic.")

However, this fic goes far beyond what I would normally expect of a death-fic ... even what I might expect out of most "loyal friendship" or bonds-of-devotion-driven pieces. It's not just a story of a death of one of the Straw Hats, it's also a story about their life; and the fic is all the more powerful for it. When it was finally finished, I was stunned in more ways than one. I was stunned that any fan could bear to take such a story out to its full emotional limit, seemingly without flinching back, not glossing over even small details simply to have the pain over and done with faster. It made me admire the sheer dedication and skill of [ profile] serrende as a writer. Secondly, I was stunned emotionally. For a whole day after, I would have to sit there and tell myself: "It's ok. It's a fic. It's not what actually happened in canon ... " as self-reassurance. 'Cause dang if it didn't seem like it could have! [ profile] serrende didn't just toss out some angsty pain, she also explored what it was that had made this person important and valued to the crew in great detail and with obvious care for the characters and what binds them together. She leaves no one out, and writes everyone so well.

At its heart, this transcends death-fic to become a story about the entire crew's relationship with that person, and on some level, their relationships with each other. It illuminates not just the depth of the loss, but the depth of the love. True, this fic is like grieving, is like saying goodbye. And saying goodbye is hard—so very, very hard—but even when saying goodbye is hard, you aren't sorry you met in the first place. You aren't sorry you knew that person you loved.

So likewise, despite the fact that this fic hits hard, I treasure it highly. It really reminds me of why I love this series and these characters myself, as well as why I love writing. They all take me to places—depths of both joy and sadness—that I never expected to go, but could never regret going to all the same.

Warning, of course, for violent death, grief, major angst.


Alternate links: FF.Net, AO3
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27th-Jun-2012 01:09 pm Cracked by thewordweaves (T/PG-13)
Pairing: None, gen
Length: ~2.6k
Author on LJ: [ profile] thewordweaves
Author Website: Profile on FF.Net
Why this must be read: With Brook being the newest Straw Hat crewmember, there really isn't as much fanfic about him as other members. He's also rather eccentric, making him difficult to write (being an undead skeleton living in the watery grave of your former crewmates for 50 years does that.) However, thewordweaves handles his painful history without shying away from the physical and emotional realities of it, while Brook's subsequent endurance and final happiness balance out the horror. Not only is this a neat introduction to Book's past (non-canon in only a few very minor points, I believe for the sake of narrative,) it also illuminates his personality and character, and what becoming a Straw Hat pirate has meant to him.


Alternate links: DW, LJ
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25th-Jun-2012 12:12 am Tiger Hunt by X-Parrot (T/PG-13)
I don't know how you get a van running on paddles to spin out, but I think I did. Doing my best to get back up to cruising speed!

Pairing: None, gen
Length: ~65k
Author on LJ: [ profile] xparrot
Author Website: X Never Marks the Spot
Why this must be read: Guys, this is X-Parrot fic. THE original action/adventure/angst/Sanji-and-Zoro-are-Starsky-and-Hutch author (well ... as far as I can tell, anyway.)  In fact, this is the author that got me to being a One Piece fan for keeps, though not with this particular fic, if only because it wasn't finished at the time. That honor instead goes to Seven Deaths. (But I digress.)

I always find it impressive when an author manages to finish an epic fic with style, especially when there is a gap of five years between the major body of the work and the final few chapters, like here, in Tiger Hunt. It was a surprise and also an absolute joy to see it finish out after so long, yet the ending doesn't seem like it was rushed or forced.

This fic is filled with suspense as the crew finds themselves pitted in a desperate struggle of survival against one of their strongest members. It's also the fulfillment of the massive, aborted, captain-vs-first-mate clash only half-realized in Luffy and Zoro's early-on canon tangle (one that was, at the time, brought on by Luffy's mistaken conclusions). Only in this fic, Zoro also means to pick this fight—or thinks he does, anyway. Despite the immensely powerful element of having these two inseparable companions so at odds, X-Parrot doesn't neglect the other crew members as they race to right the situation before one or more of them end up dead. Zoro turned against the crew is perhaps not the most "original" theme out there, but some tropes are popular for very good reason, and when I think of that sort of plot, this is the first example my mind jumps to, without exception.

For anyone who might have been in fandom some years ago and remembers reading this when it was first being posted—don't hesitate! The ending is everything you were ever waiting for!

Tiger Hunt

Alternate link: AO3
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18th-Jun-2012 09:02 am Zoro's Directions Only Make Sense If You're Special Like He Is (K+/PG)
Pairing: None/Gen
Length: ~1k
Author on LJ: [ profile] peroxide_fic
Author Website: FF.Net Account
Why this must be read: I was trying to rec all from different authors since this is the fandom's first time here, but ... I really just can't pass this one up. It's classic Zoro at his directionally challenged finest. It's really no wonder that he gets lost so frequently and in so many ridiculous ways ... and Peroxide captures that aspect of Zoro perfectly in this hilarious short. Perhaps Sanji should think on the bright side: at least Zoro's not the ship's navigator.

Zoro's Directions

Alternate link: LJ
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16th-Jun-2012 12:59 pm One Piece/Bleach (PG-13)
Title: Thirteen Going on Fourteen by peroxidepest.
Pairing: Mentions of LuffyxNami and uh, a ZoroxKenpachi mancrush thing, and maybe a faint flippant bit with SanjixYumichika, but yeah. Otherwise none, really.
Author on LJ: [ profile] peroxide_fic
Author Website: FF.Net account
Why this must be read: Any time I tried to think of the OP crossovers I'd read in the past, I'd invariably just keep thinking of this one. Somewhere between Zoro and Sanji being their badass selves, hilarity, and pure crack, there is this fic, and it's very fun, especially if one has even a passing understanding of both universe. Death? Yep, it turns out to be just another day in the life for Zoro and Sanji. They fit right in with the many strange and quirky personalities found in Bleach.

Thirteen Going on Fourteen

Alternate links on LJ, collection posted as separate chapters:
Thirteen Going on Fourteen
The Best Present Ever Period
A Day (or Two) in the Afterlife
If This is Really Your Greatest Rival You Clearly Do Not Deserve Any Pie
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15th-Jun-2012 12:14 pm Fortunae Gauntlet by Velkyn Karma (T / PG-13)
Pairing: None/Gen
Length: ~77k
Author on LJ: [ profile] velkynkarma
Author Website: FF.Net Profile
Why this must be read: I was mildly surprised, but also immensely pleased, when this author came into the fandom, and brought with her more than one straight-up adventure/battle/friendship fic. Awwww yeah. I had to go with reccing her first effort, as it remains my personal favorite overall, though most every one of her fics has some element that made me tempted to rec it instead.

But with Fortunae Gauntlet, more than one or two things about it have always stuck with me. I liked the variety of fighting styles of the enemies, the innovative battle tactics of the crew against said enemies (it's very One Piece), and the fact the attention of the fic is balanced among the different crewmembers, something that isn't seen in fanfic as often as I'd personally like.

I really enjoyed that the last battle gave my favorite character an unexpected character a shining moment, though the fight does conclude with a showdown between Luffy and the enemy leader, just like you might find in the original manga itself. The fic's an exciting read from start to finish. Good battle writers can be hard to come by, even when the source material has battle as a major element. Truth be told, it's tough to imagine the fandom without [ profile] velkynkarma!

Note that this story takes place before Franky and Brook joined the crew, so they are not present.

Fortunae Gauntlet
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10th-Jun-2012 01:14 pm Sanji's Spinner (K+/PG)
Pairing: None/Gen
Length: ~2k
Author on LJ: [ profile] zelda_addict
Author Website: FF.Net Profile
Why this must be read:  It's the weekend, so let's take a spin on the lighter side! When the resident ladies' man cook Sanji comes across a "spinner," and sees a couple prompted to kiss by it.... of course he has to take it home to his galley immediately. He posts it on the galley door so everyone has to spin it before they enter, in hopes that he might net himself a kiss from one of the crew's lovely ladies. Only thing is, he didn't take into account the fact that 6 out of his 8 crewmates ... are male. Classic Sanji embarrassing himself for love.

Sanji's Spinner
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7th-Jun-2012 10:05 am Luffy the Genius by Roseveare (PG-13/T)
Pairing: None/Gen
Length: ~6k
Author on LJ: [ profile] roseveare
Author Website: Freaky Alternate Universe
Why this must be read: It's always been pretty obvious that, while Luffy is a curious person by nature, he's not the sharpest tack in the batch ... in fact, rather far from it. So what would it mean for him to suddenly become highly intelligent? Roseveare does a poignant job of examining the question in this short, while also touching on the effect this has on his relationship with his crew. Like most fics I find compelling, the ending is just a little bittersweet and echos back to a core theme of the series—the crew's love for each other.

Luffy the Genius
Alternate links: LJ, author's website
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3rd-Jun-2012 08:58 am 'Til You Feel it All Around You by Tonko (T)
Pairing: None
Length: ~60k
Author on LJ: [ profile] tonko_ni
Author Website: AO3; FF.Net
Why this must be read: What reason is there to not rec this fic?? To me, it perfectly captures what makes OP tick—the Straw Hat's pasts, what their pasts made them into as adults, and their relationships with their crewmates. Doubly impressive is that it takes one of those tropes that usually makes me skip right over a fic—characters getting turned into children—and makes it not frivolous or something to torture the adults with, but instead uses it to create a meaningful, subtle dialogue on childhood, parents and children, and growing up. It's one of those rare fics that has left tears in my eyes and a difficult-to-express sense of warmth in my heart.

'Til You Feel it All Around You
Alternate links: AO3, LJ
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3rd-Jun-2012 06:08 am One Piece Fandom Overview

Hello! I'm so excited to be reccing One Piece here, for the first time in the comm! My entrance to this fandom took a number of twists and turns, like some sort of cheezy romance holds a special place in my heart. Sorry for the slight delay passing the starting line, all, it took more time than I expected to get the floaties and propeller attached to the van.

Cause where we're going we're gonna need them.

One Piece: World, Characters, and Fandom Resources

One Piece by Eiichiro Oda:
14 years of fun, and counting.

Pirates. Adventure. Hilarious characters. What more could you ask? )

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