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alphaGulp
alphaGulp rated it
Heavenly Star
August 14, 2016
Status: v1c16
Although it was nice to see someone attempting to present a non-psychotic MC, it isn't well done at all.

The characters build attachment 100x too quickly, the dialogues between them are poorly done, the choices made by characters are often dumb (as in: 'I love you so much I will throw my safe life away for you on a 1 in a trillion chance!'), and the story has way too many unlikely plot twists.

... more>>
Spoiler

I thought it was particularly retarded that the MC would leave his just-adopted sister WITHOUT TELLING HER, casually letting others take care of telling her instead. Is the MC/author autistic? Does he not care about how this will obviously traumatize her?

But then I saw how the author wanted to show how retarded that girl was, how little she valued her own life (everything for her new brother!!!), so that she could put on some grand show of absurd sacrifice and prove herself worthy of his undying commitment.

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It's weird how so many of these authors expect women to be sacrificing themselves for them, when in fact women will always put themselves first (they weren't born to be your pawns). Good relationships are meant to be win-win.

And although real feelings and commitment will appear when healthy people synergize with one another, IT TAKES TIME. This novel has the commitment from adopted siblings develop SO FAST that it becomes annoying and ridiculous. <<less
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alphaGulp
alphaGulp rated it
A Will Eternal
October 9, 2016
Status: c132
Er Gen writes far better stories than most wuxia authors, but he also has some big faults.

As usual in his stories (it seems), there figures a heck of a lot of animal rape, which I find off-putting, especially as it tends to repeat itself in certain patterns the author likes.

Otherwise, the MC is a very special kind of dense moron. He is an idiot-savant, so while he is able to advance his magic abilities like a savant, he is a total idiot when it comes to most social situations.

Unfortunately,... more>> making your MC retarded is one of the weaker ways to create tension and drama in a novel, so I'm not impressed by it, nor am I interested in watching him flail about and never learn any lessons from his obvious social mistakes.

The MC has a pathological fear of dying. He is a pathetic, incoherent, broken man who is not actively living his life, but rather just desperately running away in fear from death. This weak form of motivation for the MC is clearly not good, since it just pushes the MC to be defensive and to basically not build anything in the world.

What is the MC trying to build or create? NOTHING, except he is desperately seeking to live for ever - not because he wants to do something before he dies, but instead just because he vividly fears dying, no matter the circumstances. It is insane and annoying.

Knowing a bit how Er Gen likes to write, I can expect that the MC will never really grow out of this, unless 'growing' means devolving into a more psychotic murderer. The MC's motivation for murder and power will continue to be his silly fear of death, and his retarded misunderstandings with his environment will probably also never abate.

--
Update:
The MC's bonded pet animal is one of the WORST EVER:
Spoiler

After dozens of chapters detailing all the creepy work done by the MC to get his bonded animal to be born (with a particularly tear-jerking chapter where the poor little thing barely manages to be born alive), it was a HUGE DISAPPOINTMENT to see what came after.

The damned critter hates all men and is extremely creepy with all women - even though the thing isn't human and having sex with women would be bestiality (*PUKE*), and even though it is not feasible to think of claiming ALL WOMEN, to the exclusion of all men on the planet. (ie: the damned thing is even more retarded than its master)

How annoying is it for something to hate all men just because they can hook up with women? Doesn't the author realize that his dumb critter is precisely the kind of animal ALL his male and female readers would hate to have around?

And of course, the retarded MC is the worst parent for this extremely sexually deviant monster: he never tries to teach it better morals or ideas, instead just telling it to be deviant in a way that doesn't cause the MC problems...

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I also have to laugh at the author's idea of self-improvement:
Spoiler

The only way to get better is to risk your life with a <25% chance of survival!

LOL. It is so dumb. How powerful would a clan become if, instead of constantly decimating their members, they instead trained them in ways that didn't cripple or kill the majority of them?

I think the elders are more interested in population reduction than in population advancement.

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When the risks taken by the MC and his gang are considered foolhardy and ridiculous, then the story becomes just plain silly. <<less
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alphaGulp
alphaGulp rated it
I Shall Seal the Heavens
November 17, 2016
Status: c750
I also dropped the story around 750 because the MC lost his external driving factors and then just became grossly abusive, for no better reason other than being in a permanently bad mood.

... more>>
Spoiler

The story starts off poorly for a dozen or more chapters, but then finally reaches a first segment where the MC is forced to try to survive in a sect full of sociopaths - in a desperate gamble to survive, things are good-to-great.

However, the MC never tries to leave or free himself from that psychopathic world of 'cultivators'- instead, he becomes strangely convinced that he must become the most powerful of them all, which obviously requires that he become the most extreme murderer, con artist and robber.

But before most people would notice this, the MC gets poisoned, which becomes another external factor that LOGICALLY forces him to get back into that world of sociopaths so that he can try to get his cure.

But once he cures himself, the MC dies and is reborn into an inhuman, murderous fiend who is, ironically enough, almost the polar opposite of his originally fairly reasonable Confucian scholar self.

Strategy? Who cares about that when you are in a truly foul mood: deeply unhappy people feel a powerful need and desire to make others around them suffer as well (when in fact they should be acting to solve the root of their problem: healing their wounded self).

With this MC, we see that he acts Confucian and thus moderately wise while he is weak, but once he achieves power, he uses is to destroy and hurt rather than create and heal. He primarily brings despair, desolation, envy, hatred and death upon his already crappy environment.

One could say he is the product of his environment, but I see it rather as someone who simply failed to transcend his crappy origins. Evil's first goal is to to turn you evil, so that you can be unhappy as well. But that just means losing *by choice*, since it is never too late to turn back to good, to happiness, health, symbiosis, true strength and pure fun.

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In general, even if I enjoyed certain parts of the story, there were long segments where the MC is scamming or conning people BY HABIT (rather than true necessity), which I was deeply repulsed by. I also didn't care for all the animal rape, which got extremely repetitive - by the 100th time, I wondered who could still be titillated or shocked by the SAME DAMN 'joke'.

Spoiler

I was at first laughing in slight shock when I read about all the animals exploding from their butts when the mirror was pointed towards them, and how the MC was testing this out all over the place like a scientist. (I was very curious about how that was going to get explained.)

But then I was frankly creeped out by Lord 5th, who is probably the rapiest animal sidekick I've ever seen. The thing to understand is that Lord 5th represents the author's repressed subconscious desires to brutally ass-rape all the chicks he meets.

The awful part is not the desire to dominate women, but rather the way chosen to do so: a man can proudly dominate by his wit, his mastery of game theory, his grace, his intelligence, etc. It is only a truly boorish man who fantasizes of so brutally dominating women - which doesn't even work at all BTW (which is perhaps why the author is so sore towards women: his smiley-rapey ways mean he is an endless failure at love and at women, whom he then resentfully wishes to harm).

Of course, this Lord 5th seems to target both sexes equally with his terrible abuse, so really the MC not only subconsciously wants to brutally ass-rape most women, but also most men. I guess he figures he would get less lip from them if he did so....

It's like WOW: no wonder he turned out like he did! This poor guy desperately needs to heal and get some sorely lacking mental clarity, so he can stop harming his environment (and thus finally get the love and appreciation he needs), but instead we watch him just meanly lash out at the world in anger and frustration, purposefully choosing the bloodiest path to brutal domination just because it fits his emotional mindset.

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The MC is the kind of guy I would never befriend in a million years, since I know he is such a creepy scammer. Normally, karma would get him his just deserts for such lowly deeds, but with his plot armor he's sure to 'win' at being top bully...

Also, I enjoyed the early romance, but not at all the later developments:

Spoiler

The MC was like a boss when he was moving forward in life, disregarding all the babes throwing themselves at him ('cuz the dude was busy with being poisoned and becoming King Bully).

But then the relationship with his gf around c750 is 100% lame: they spend their time freaking holding hands and all sorts of other boring, childish crap, and then she is supposed to become his raison d'être and motivation to murder countless people to get her reborn, just so they can go back to holding hands and being super boring together?

It's just dumb and pointlessly difficult: choose a fun babe who isn't dead, bro, and life will be a lot better!

[collapse]

---

To be fair though, I still gave it a 4 because some parts were outstanding. I enjoyed the first big chase quite a bit, and even if the fights were with silly magical powers, the underlying tension and backstory was convincing enough to make it work. Some setups were simply fantastic.

In general, it is a lot smarter and better done than most generic xianxia, but the MC becomes just too unlikable later on. Pure callous creep stupidly self-destructing. <<less
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alphaGulp
alphaGulp rated it
Warlock of the Magus World
September 13, 2016
Status: c249
This is one of the most fascinating psychotic xianxia/wuxia I have read to date.

The key thing with this novel is that FOR ONCE we have a fairly realistic world setting, where people conspire and use their supremacy to make permanent slaves out of the rest of the world - basically not giving anyone any chance at all, since after all, why would they?

So whereas other wuxia always have retarded worlds where youths are given all sorts of resources and opportunities to become dangerous to the existing power structure (LOL -... more>> as if the sociopaths in those stories would offer school environments such as the ones depicted), this one has something completely different, that is not only far more realistic, but also far more challenging for the MC:

Spoiler

One very logical pattern that shows up in the novel is that when sociopaths offer a school, or a secret club, or any other opportunity, it is always set up by its evil architects to abusively take advantage of all the people who join.

So if you join their Magus school, you will become both a slave AND a gimpy mage who can never go past 'level 1'. If you join their secret society, you will just be a pawn to be used and discarded when desired (LOL).

As a result, the story is far more satisfying because it is not only more coherent (and also more like the real world), but in addition it is far more challenging for the MC, who has to really hustle and search like mad to find ways out of these predicaments.

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Also, where other wuxia will have easily identified characters (such as the token submissive friends and harem members) be strangely trustworthy, when EVERYONE ELSE (including the MC) is a conniving backstabber, here we have a largely self-sufficient MC who is smart enough to know that there are NO FRIENDS to be had in such environments.

In fact, other wuxia are really annoying in how they have these extremely needy MCs, who obviously are desperately wanting everyone's attention and who also need emotional 'loving' touches from people (weaklings!), when in fact they have picked the path of evil and abuse, where that kind of stuff is not available anymore in the same way.

Spoiler

So in WMW instead, we have a psychopath MC who has smartly evaluated what he can and can't get. He shows his back to no one, and his psychotically smart/safe sexual relationships are only with mind-controlled slaves.

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---

Another fascinating aspect is how the story breaks the usual BS-light-dark pattern of typical wuxia, which will often have a world split between 'light' and 'dark' sects, but when you look at the details you notice that in fact there are no differences AT ALL to be seen between the light and dark: they do everything the same (including lots and lots of endless bullying inside the sects), with the so-called 'light/good' side being worse because it acts just as bad as the dark side, but tries to present itself as a righteous and moral side.

In fact, the identical but eternally in balanced opposition light and dark sides are obvious divide-and-conquer tactics being used by hidden architects in those worlds (in all likelihood), but the MCs of those wuxia never seem to notice or question anything.
Spoiler

In WMW, it is fascinating to see, first of all, a far more realistic depiction of the truly evil and abusive 'dark' side, but then afterwards we even get to see what looks like a really good 'light' side: an appearance of symbiosis and peaceful coexistence with the masses makes for an ENORMOUS contrast with the 'dark'.

HOWEVER! It is important to note that this is where the author cheats, because as you continue reading and analyzing, you realize that the so-called good guys are still secretly restricting knowledge (and making all their faithful mage followers into gimps), but even worse: in fact, the level 2+ elite 'light' forces are just as parasitical and immoral as the 'dark', so the differences were once more only in superficial appearance.

At that point, it becomes all too easy for the MC to decide to turn against 'good', because the good represented is actually just another form of EVIL. A truly intelligent MC would do something truly good for himself, but instead our psychotic MC decides to stupidly keep risking his life playing their games of abusive power.

FWIW, the point where the MC gets righteously angry at the psychic 'good' girl for being a hypocrite is a fail on his part, IMO, because the girl was crazy and couldn't give proper justifications for trying to kill him (due to her talent/curse of rough foresight), yet clearly, beyond the justifications she could give, it stands to reason that the MC will IN FACT most likely be a calamity for people like that crazy chick and her false-good side.

The MC is trying to make it seem once again like the false-good side is worse than the dark side for creating self-serving BS rationalizations for trying to harm him 'for the greater good', but this seems like a very minor detail, especially considering the far bigger problem for the MC: his own moral position is no higher than hers (clearly) and he is generally just as incoherent, if not worse: why is he seeking to do evil instead of (real) good?

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---

As far as the AI Chip, I'd say it was poorly introduced at the start (with bad science / logic / descriptions of how it worked and existed in his original world), which broke immersion a bit, but in the end it is well developed in the story.

AI Chip-like special powers usually suck in LNs because they become too much of a mental crutch for the MC/author, who then basically lazily offloads all of his thinking, only to become nothing but brute force, with all answers and solutions coming like magic from the AI (some stories will go so far as to have the AI do auto-aiming, or have it even move their body for them, etc.).

Luckily, WMW does not (IMO) fall prey to this all-too-common mistake, and instead it still largely feels like the MC is thinking and figuring most stuff out himself, with the AI being used for appropriate sub-tasks. <<less
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alphaGulp
alphaGulp rated it
Perfect World
August 31, 2016
Status: --
I dropped this around 100-150. Like other reviews before me, I also wasn't impressed with the milk jokes and ultra-precocious murdering child MC, but the story was bearable (IMO), only to then have the MC become too much of a shitty brat.

... more>>
Spoiler

The MC doesn't seem to understand that you can't abuse everything and everyone in your school (ie: practical consequences occur in time), but even worse: he doesn't seem to understand the moral responsibility a student has to a decent school: if they take you in at your own request and give you a decently good learning environment, then going around vandalizing and robbing the place is really like harming/wrecking a good thing for a lot of people.

Yet we are supposed to think it's funny and charming 'cos he's a little kid?

[collapse]

The MC becomes way too abusive later on, practicing cannibalism on sentient creatures and horridly dominating them like the worst of thug bosses: haha! We are supposed to be amazed and wowed by his precocious talent for brutal thuggery, but I was mostly just disgusted. <<less
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alphaGulp
alphaGulp rated it
Kumo Desu ga, Nani ka?
October 9, 2016
Status: --
I enjoyed the beginning, although in the end it goes nowhere good at all (hence my relatively poor rating).

FWIW, this light novel (LN) validated my now-established approach to reading (mostly crappy) LNs: whenever the dumb author switches focus to some boring side character that you don't care about: SKIP ALL THE TEXT until the MC is back to being the focus.

In this case, doing so is very easy because entire chapters are dedicated to external characters you don't want to bother reading about:

... more>>
Spoiler

From what I could decipher, these external characters' side stories are actually happening in a distant future, and the annoyingly incoherent and (self)destructive queen-of-evil is some ultra 'evolved' form of the MC. All these external side characters that the author spends a dozen or more chapters on just get killed off later by her with no impact to anyone we care about, so it's not even like they matter at all.

[collapse]

All I can say is that I am SUPER HAPPY I didn't bother reading those lame side stories, once I found out how they turned out - ya know what I'm sayin'?

Anyhow, the MC was fun as a messed-up introvert stuck in a do-or-die scenario, but unfortunately the author never had any intention to develop the MC's character, to make her grow or learn to make sense. Instead she just devolves from being a dysfunctional-reclusive to being a dysfunctional-mass-murderer-on-a-whim.

The MC is so COMPLETELY self-absorbed that she has absolutely no empathy for anyone. She seems like a terribly wounded individual, and thus it was sad to see her never get any healing throughout the story.

---

If you read only the beginning (skipping the side stories), then you can have fun for a while, but once she accumulates enough power to impose her will on others, then she becomes insanely callous and just all around moronic: she clearly has no idea what to do with her power, so she just flails around and flip-flops all over, while practicing the victim stance - you should pity her while she murders thousands of people for no good reason! <<less
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alphaGulp
alphaGulp rated it
God Of Slaughter
August 22, 2016
Status: c124
This is a really fun, albeit still flawed story. In particular, the male/female relationships are shown in a very Red Pill (ie: ~macho) kind of way, which is fun and refreshing.

Mainstream society expects men to always be big dumb White Knights for any and all babes - AS IF that was women's natural due and men's unquestionable responsibility. This story is like a breath of fresh air, because the MC looks at those social conventions and he just LAUGHS AT THEM and goes on with his business.

So although... more>> I find it disappointing how little the MC tries to synergize with people (like in most other wuxia), regarding the part of the story where hot babes expect all sorts of special treatment from the MC only to get harshly rejected: is the MC just being sore and childishly/pointlessly mean to the girl, or is he not in fact trying to communicate how her expectations were annoyingly out of whack the whole freaking time, and he got frankly sick and tired of it?

Other reviewers would have you believe that women are innocent little snow flakes and that you always have to take their crap with a smile, but real life teaches otherwise (women tend to brutally use men, given half a chance) and reason also teaches you to question: why should I?

As a man, why should I become a woman's tireless knight, when that ideal doesn't even seem to work in practice? God of Slaughter is about a dude who decided to live a free life. He doesn't give his power to women just for sex (which is so easy to get, after all), but at the same time he isn't an abusive douchebag (IMO):

Spoiler

At the start of the story, the MC only happens to look at the hot babe taking a piss in the woods (as indeed any sexy macho guy would back on earth, where the girl would really only have herself to blame and wouldn't really care / mind, in fact, so long as he is also good looking), only to have that psychob*tch's reaction be to try to have him tortured/enslaved/murdered.

So *IN FACT*, when you look closely at how the MC later sexually assaults, rapes and kills her, we are talking about him returning AT MOST 5% of the evil and harm she tried to do to him without justification (since from the start all he did was LOOK AT HER PISS).

So just that part of the story is uplifting for most men: we have a rotten b*tch who, FOR ONCE, doesn't get a free murder and mayhem pass just 'cos she is hot and female.

[collapse]

Another interesting development is how our MC gets laid with some of the hottest sex, and then builds relationships with women without losing track of what he wants or what he needs to offer for the relationship to be fairly equitable.

Spoiler

Although I was disappointed by the reset that happens past chapter 100, where the MC leaves behind EVERYONE he had gotten to know up to that point (as so often happens in wuxia), once you accept the fact that the MC wants to be a loner (since AFTER ALL he isn't powerful enough to really be able to protect any babes, realistically speaking), then you understand that he really has nothing to lose/gain with respect to the two babes who want to be with him.

And clearly, the uber-babe that he didn't bang always treated him more or less like crap, and always considered herself to be SO SPECIAL that she thought she could also actually treat him (of all people) like that. Even if she was smart enough to adjust her behavior somewhat along the way (seeing how much she was actually dependent on him), it was always kind of annoying, I guess?

I mean, as a man, you learn to put up with all sorts of childish behavior from the people around you (especially women), so is it that big a deal? Did the MC need to be so harsh when he rejected the uber-babe in public (hence making his family not want to help her either)? I personally don't think so, and therefore I think he could have found an even better thing to say at that point, but even still, it is kind of fun to see a hot babe be taught a lesson she needs to learn: get over your good looks 'cos they don't actually matter all that much.

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In fact, here's one problem hot women have: hot women are only interested in the most attractive men, so they turn down most men and offer opportunities to only a select few. But here's the issue with that: the group of men who can attract ONE hot babe can in fact attract most other hot babes as well, so for them, a hot babe is just one of PLENTY. So really, it is kind of laughable when they try to get all high and mighty on you...

Anyhow, this is NOT a story for white knights or manginas - they will be deeply revolted by this story and everything it represents. For them, a hot babe is something unattainable and 100% pure, and they will do ANYTHING for her, including trying to castigate and shame the free-thinking men who laugh at her silly games. <<less
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alphaGulp
alphaGulp rated it
Against the Gods
August 21, 2016
Status: c150
This novel is the perfect example of the disappointing limits of a cunning mind.

A cunning person will want to do bad things for the short-term benefits, even though the long-term consequences are bad. Like a child, they become obsessive about immediately obtaining the object of their desire (ex: sex, wealth, power, etc.) and so they will do ANYTHING and everything to attain it, without sufficiently considering the consequences of their actions.

So in this case, we have an MC who is a self-centered, abusive asshole who wants the world to... more>> be all about him, without a thought to the consequences *even if he is successful in making the world be all about himself*. In his own personal fantasy, he can easily accomplish all this just by way of his lowly cunning means (ex: he simply murders all the 'fools' who dare step in his way and all the babes fall for him) - BUT THEN WHAT?

LOL. For example, his imaginary harem obviously DOES NOT WORK. What exactly is he offering his women, other than safety and medical care? It is pathetic to watch the MC flail about and obviously NOT SATISFY his women's needs!!!

Women need way more than just what he offers to be happy and thriving, and the best women are not only good-looking - they are also THEMSELVES inspiring and fun to be with. Yun Che's girls are all boring and a billion times past insipid. In real-life, at best they are the type you learn to move on from quickly, even if they are pretty.

In fact, his chicks' main attractive factor, aside from being 'desired by all', is them being extremely hard to approach and interact with (ie: terrible social skills and attitude), as well as bringing HUGE BAGGAGE (ex: a stupid princess caught in a power struggle) - all red flags, in reality, but the MC sees these as positives since that way the chicks get so indebted to him that he can try to coast on the fact that he dealt with their crap. Then there is the MC's aunt, whose freaking INCESTUOUS LOVE is disgusting but conversely so easy and all-forgiving that I guess that makes it tempting for people with abysmally low self-esteem?

As well, if you look at the MC's professional goals in life, you realize that he has none other than being strong enough to bully everyone. What kind of world does he want to create with his power? Well, the bully world he lives in is ALREADY his perfect world to be a reactionary bully in (ie: he gets his easy excuse for being abusive from the fact that everyone else is a hateful bully like himself), so he has nothing to do! Everything is already perfect: just wait for the next retarded bully and then use plot armor to win in a lazy, uninspired way, AGAIN. And then repeat FOREVER (since he has even cursed himself with immortality in hell, that f'ing moron).

So it isn't surprising that ONCE AGAIN, a cunning author is able to create a beginning that is fairly interesting and seemingly full of potential, but you just have to let him try to elaborate on that beginning to have his stupidly cunning mind show just how bad his ideas are, given enough time. <<less
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alphaGulp
alphaGulp rated it
The Dark King
February 2, 2017
Status: --
I was also unable to enjoy this story.

One tiny annoyance is the MC's name - it feels like a lame variation on 'dude', like I'm in futuristic world where centuries of devolution have brought us down from 'dude' to 'dudian'...

Anyhow, what was more annoying was how incoherent the story was. I really don't see how the MC turned out so special - he is a fricking regular Joe kid from our world who was put in cryo-sleep for centuries. If anything, he should be in terrible shape after... more>> that ordeal, but instead we find out that he is incomprehensibly better than everyone else in the future.

Why does this weak-minded, weak-bodied kid have the mind of an overly rational adult, suddenly? Yet if he is so smart (as per the author's wishes), why isn't he ever saying or doing strategically intelligent things? Why is it that everyone he is in competition with is so lame? Is the novel hiding the fact that everyone has been so damaged by centuries of pollution that they became half-men?

But WHO CARES about some dumb kid winning over retards, or outclassing these competitors for no good reason at all? It's extremely annoying to me to see some character try to look good when the underlying situation is just wholly LAME.

It just didn't make any sense at all. Rather than reading a story about some kid making it through the post-apocalypse, I had a feeling like I was just reading a wish-fulfillment fantasy with the following parameters: the MC will be the best, everyone will love and admire him, and they will be SO JEALOUS - this is what the author desires to show us, only he actually isn't able to create the circumstances that would let this occur naturally, so instead we have to suffer a very awkward attempt to FORCE IT to happen. <<less
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alphaGulp
alphaGulp rated it
Dungeon Hunter
August 30, 2016
Status: c19
Interesting psychotic story, where the MC is out to get BOTH the demons and the humans (he actually preys on both, and has zero sympathy or empathy for anyone, humans included).

What makes it stand out, IMO, is that there is quite a bit of fairly intelligent talk about population dynamics, which are sometimes well developed in the story. So it actually becomes kind of interesting to see the MC optimize his hunting by seeking to use the humans against the demons in fairly intricate and smart ways.

It isn't always... more>> well done though:

Spoiler

For example, early on the MC spends a bunch of time explaining how he needs to add some new type of creature in level 1 so that it can prey on another creature that is growing too fast - which made boring sense, but then immediately afterwards the MC goes out and kills all of his creatures (including these newly added ones, one assumes) in order to get a system reward...

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That being said, one negative about the story is how the MC is given just way too big an advantage over his competition by knowing so much more about what is coming up. This is balanced somewhat by the fact that the competing demons are very powerful and are working in 4 big gangs (so the danger to him is still real), but still it sometimes feels a bit too easy for him, frankly. (But then again, it sure is fun to see him get all his insane 'first to do X' bonuses...)

All-in-all, this is a very fun, albeit totally psychotic, story. I like the long chapters and I really like how it seems like there is a real direction to the story and plot, and how it seems like things have been well planed out by the author. I do not think there will be any school arcs or other outrageous filler...

One thing I particularly like about this type of psychotic MC: for once he isn't trying to play house with an improbable harem, and he is also confident enough not to need ego-boosting lackeys.

Spoiler

Unlike other stories that have the MCs find women that magically love them and improbably place the MC in front of their own interests, or otherwise have the MCs take on huge risks to get involved with high-risk women, in this one the MC is rather only considering romance with magically branded slaves (ex: his dark elf) - something coherent for a deeply psychotic person who cannot trust anyone.

[collapse]

The novel has lots of cheap thrills (in the form of always winning and gaining huge advantages in the face of significant adversity), but I didn't mind all the time spent on the minutiae stats on gear, creatures and protagonists because the system seems original enough to be interesting, and because fights are actually won based on real logical reasons (and numbers) rather than ass-pulls.

In short, it offers an MC who is far more coherent and functional than most MC psychos out there... <<less
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alphaGulp
alphaGulp rated it
Absolute Choice
January 28, 2017
Status: c113
What makes this story so hard to enjoy is that so much of everything feels improbable, imaginary, random or artificial, where instead of trying first and foremost to make a coherent story with coherent characters, the author feels the need to constantly add new random elements to keep things 'original'.

In the author's defense, he actually managed to make me laugh in surprise sometimes, but unfortunately the rest of the time I feel like I am getting annoyed by a nonsense story with nonsense characters and nonsense action.

The action is bad... more>> like most xianxia action is bad:
- no 3D / visual coherency: how actions are put in sequence does not make sense (ex: the range of attacks for real punches and kicks is absurd, and the characters launch them from any position: prone or crouching, in the air or off the ground as if that made no difference)
- long-winded talking during attacks that take a split-second to execute
- short-range attacks launched from 100 meters, or 10 meters, or 1 meter, with no understanding of the difference between moving into range for an attack (movement speed) and then attacking (attacking speed), or of the impact movement actually has on a kick or punch (offensively and defensively)
- endless addition of new imaginary magical attacks to be mixed with physical attacks (punches, swords, etc.), with no coherent set of reasons why one is better than the other
- endless progression into new 'realms' of power means that everything you learned about the system of fighting gets voided constantly: no one knows what will be the winning factor next (hint: it's all too clearly just plot armor deciding things anyway)
- lazy usage of the idea of dodging (or blocking, or even attacking): clearly the author just doesn't know much about how one can feasibly move to dodge various types of punches, kicks, weapons, arrows or bullets
- ex of lazy usage of punching / kicking: in real life, with 2 human bodies against each other, there is a huge difference between a jab and a hook or a body shot, just like there is a huge difference between foot jabs, round house kicks, axe kicks, various spin or jump kicks, and so on, but it's always just described as being a dumb punch or kick + dodge or block or magic shield or whatever nonsense words they decide to put in their sequence that they term 'a fight to the death'

A soft-minded person might give the benefit of the doubt and force his imagination into accepting the string of nonsense as action that is dangerous and high tension for the MC, but for me it just gets more and more boring as the super powers grow ever more nebulous and impossible to rank.

Other people might criticize xianxia for skipping on description of locales and characters, or for having locales that don't make sense (ex: the logistics of how people navigate their environment), but for me it is the nonsense fights that are the most tiresome.

Anyhow, I wouldn't say that this LN is the worst offender for nonsense action, but the plot really feels like way more nonsense than sense, so maybe that's what makes the action feel worse than it is?

Spoiler

So what exactly is the MC? Was he basically on the magic road to OPness from the start (which would make his use of 'this King' be more reasonable), what made him get his super power, when did he get it - it was all very confusing.

The author sometimes wants the MC to look weak and totally like a regular guy standing up and getting in the way of super-evil in hopeless ways, but then a few chapters later you get an explanation of how, in fact, the MC had been secretly advancing an extremely improbable strategy to win using a special ability you never knew he had.

So you never really know what is going on, be it now or in the past. Various characters' perspectives will frequently be used, so that you can witness the MC's confusing actions from a completely ignorant side character's perspective.

The recent fight against the Bishop of Virtuality was typical:
- where did the MC's Eye of God power suddenly come from? Why was his knife so effective? He had no offensive power AT ALL supposedly, but of course that gets turned around once the author decides to make the MC single-handedly save the day and the babe.
- at one point, the MC and babe are separated by a hundred meters, and then a dozen bone dragons and hundreds of skeleton warriors get summoned between them, only the babe is incapacitated. The MC somehow runs through them all and catches up to the foremost dragon that had been just about to swallow her, but the MC has the time to fight with the dragon for TEN SECONDS, and yet none of the other dragons or warriors use that time to infect the chick?
- the VR is supposed to be life-like, and you find out that committing suicide would free you from the trap, but when the MC is stupidly climbing and jumping off of 20 METER HIGH trees to try to reach the guy 100 meters in the sky: isn't a fall from 20 meters+ enough to kill or disable someone?
- why did the MC encourage the babe to waste all her mana firing arrows at the bad guy's shield? It accomplished nothing, nor did it create any opportunities for the MC as a combo attack... It was just a complete dud that then left her disabled and needing rescue.
- the fight was supposed to be high tension, with a terrible new arch-rival having been introduced, but then you find out that the MC's Lolita master/gf already knows who the Bishop is and had visited her to save him (which finally explained why he got control over the summoned creatures at the end). In the end, the master and arch-evil sound and look like two teenage girls who are old friends... LOL WUT?
- no really: this terrible terrorist organization which is deemed SO AWFUL and irrepressible for dozens of chapters, was in fact a vain old man who had been used for random murders by a vain teenage girl for seemingly nothing more than vapid, shallow, ego-driven reasons, but that's OK 'cos the nonsense Lolita-master knows all about it and does practically nothing about it, other than dropping by for a visit to have a nonsense talk with the arch-criminal old buddy teenager.

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Realms In The Firmament
October 19, 2016
Status: --
I rated it OK because it isn't terribly bad, but it is pretty close to being rated a 2. I dropped it after maybe 50 or a 100 chapters for the following reason:

It just does not work to have such a low EQ MC. Sure, he was celibate for centuries, but this shouldn't mean that he never witnessed the types of games men and women play with one another over that time span. In fact, because he was able to observe these things as an outsider for... more>> so long (free of the immediacy of the desire that clouds most people's thinking), he should be FAR more savvy about women than most men, yet instead he is a million times worst than average.

So just based on that, the MC's mental weakness with women doesn't even make sense, but regardless, even if this character flaw had a better supporting reason, it would still be annoying to watch him always flail about like a loser whenever he is with some chick - the MC is more clueless than a teenager, and yet I am reading this novel to see the guy be masterful (or progress towards mastery) and WIN.

Only if you enjoy the idea of a powerful guy being impossibly dense and lame with women can you enjoy this book. <<less
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Seoul Station’s Necromancer
February 21, 2017
Status: --
What kills the story for me is the creepy political sub-text.

In reality, even though the TV news is constantly bleating about terrorists being a big problem, statistically they are an insignificant risk, in addition to actually being obvious patsies, but in this novel terrorists are the the #1 concern of Americans - way more critical to their personal lives than their jobs and welfare!

Furthermore, in this novel it seems like the Middle East has real mean terrorists that the government is fighting FOR REALZ. Luckily they have the MC's... more>> help to go murder them all in blood-soaked revenge! 911 Mission Accomplished!!!

Oh, and also, even though the MC smartly states and repeatedly shows that he trusts NO ONE, he makes a huge exception of the entire South Korean military, to whom he proudly and unhesitatingly not only gives his blood but also all his secrets. In this bizarro world, they are seemingly known for being deeply trustworthy and free of corruption (LOL).

So as much as you might enjoy his smarts and independence, as endlessly highlighted by various points in the story, when it comes back to the corrupt status quo and mainstream thinking, the MC is completely subservient.

Similarly, the MC's interactions with North Korea felt like I was watching the Mainstream News's fantasies, except in my web fantasy, which I actually read to escape this ugly society of lies.

---

Frankly, I prefer it when the intelligence officers (what a misnomer) craft their manipulative psy-ops using stories that are a little bit more detached from our political reality. I don't like how much the author takes his readers for morons. His manipulations are just too crass and obvious.

---

The rest of the story is OK, but not nearly good enough to offset the deeper problems. <<less
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alphaGulp rated it
Apocalypse Summoner
January 2, 2017
Status: c34
The book has a problem with false promises / changing tracks very early on, or perhaps worse yet: the author doesn't even realize how incoherent his brief (34 chapter) narrative is.

So the book promises a world where a necromancer-type summoner is brought back to life decades before his death, only instead of the expected undead summons, we get summons that are lame otaku references (ex: actual characters and items from Naruto, Bleach, etc.) - as if it makes any sense at all for the apocalypse to make real all those... more>> world's items, or as if they can co-exist or all still function in ours, and more than anything: as if that wasn't worth mentioning from the beginning!!!

It really kills the suspension of disbelief when the summons are massive chuuni otaku-wishes-come-true WHEN YOU REALLY AREN'T expecting it!

At the very least, the MC could have come back to life and said: "The apocalypse happened and all of a sudden childish, otaku fantasy worlds like Naruto, Bleach and even pseudo-hentai works became real parallel universes that could be interacted with! It took me a while to get used to it, yeah."

There is lots of wasted potential though: if the author had the MC (and other students) be floored by the absurdity of otaku character(s) appearing before them, it could have been turned into something decent or even good, but instead of natural reactions, most of them are deadpan, cool, or nonexistent, which means INCOHERENT - who on earth would react like this when faced with
Spoiler

Gaara from Naruto showing up, with the MC being all like "oh yeah, I know how to deal with this summon, BASED ON MY POST-APOCALYPTIC KNOWLEDGE!!!".

And none of the male students who witness Gaara's interactions with them IN CHINESE have any particular reaction. Big bugs' invasion + magic powers is one thing, but WTF did Gaara + demented Naruto universe ALSO become real and accessible in space and time locally?

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Otherwise, the repetitiveness and other desperate attempts at text padding are just slightly annoying to me, because I'm used to it now and I know how to skip it really fast (I feel sorry for the translators though!).

Positives are things like how it is satisfying for the MC to finally not hide his foreknowledge during an apocalypse, instead trying to share it to help people, while at the same time the MC is super jaded, filled with a lifetime of harsh experiences, which simultaneously makes him satisfyingly 'not too nice', either.

The action is like a C+, maybe: I generally like it, even if it sometimes gets sloppy.

The romance, the interactions with men and women: all of these are moderately cringe-inducing, but not so bad that I had to drop it immediately. For sure, it's all about constantly aggrandizing the MC!

Also, the MC / author is way too judgemental of women. His damned apocalypse is set up to force women to sell their bodies in order for simple survival (with horrific deaths as the alternative), where each 'boyfriend' they make dies quickly and then they need to go and get another one, then is it really fair to fault a woman for making do with reality and picking a succession of 4 strong, but 'bad' guys? Does the author/MC not even have the slightest inclination about the competitive nature of women? Why would he fault women for doing what they are basically wired to do? (ie: compete to get the best / most useful man)

As an another reviewer mentioned, the author set it up so the world's powerful men (*other than the MC*) are all pigs and rapists, and ONLY by being the MC's very special friend will any women have any peace and safety!

However, the MC doesn't hesitate to verbalize his disdain for the average chicks he sees again after being reborn. The guy is a jerk, talking down to them as if that is the right thing to focus on when they should be trying to survive. Ironically all this lack of balance indicates that is is really the MC/author that needs the whole entire world to be about himself, with no other man allowed to be even close to his level - talk about being self-centered and ultimately solitary!

This is basically confused fanfiction mixing too many Japanese references, but I still find it oddly readable. At least there is progression and decent action, even if the MC/author is a very confused beta male trying to deal with his deeply repressed frustrations. <<less
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alphaGulp rated it
Master Hunter K
October 20, 2016
Status: c34
This one is extremely fast-paced, with few-to-no distractions from the MC and his path to beating the test system that is picking on humanity.

What is rather poorly explained at first (so I don't think it is a spoiler to explain) is that the MC is basically in a video game, with individual instances of a shopping district and inn available to each surviving player in between rounds. So things are clearly designed for solo play:

... more>>
Spoiler

The MC teams up with people for each round, but the best strategy is to take as many points as possible for himself each time, leaving as few as possible for his teammates...

Well, that being said, it does seem like the MC will end up with a team of friends in the end (since when only 5 people are left, then they would end up always together each time).

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The plot is basically a series of MMO video game raid instances, except the descriptions of the fights are pretty visceral and tend to be based on realism (ex: a sword cutting through a limb and incapacitating a monster), so the fights are more gripping than those in pure video-game-dynamics-based worlds.

In the end, say what you will about the simplistic plot and setting, but it does a good job of keeping the action going, with lots of loot and skills to relish gaining - basically like non-stop candy. <<less
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Instant Kill
October 1, 2016
Status: v5c4
This is one of my favorites, in part because the world feels much more original and alive than most, but also because the MC himself is original and very coherent.

For starters, one would generally expect an MC with centuries of age to be different from a horny teenager. For the very first time, in this LN we have an MC who accumulated actual wisdom in his life, like understanding that life is best lived when you aim for the highest things while taking everything into account (including plans for... more>> a truly good life for your spouse and kids - or not to have them at all). Yet some plans simply don't fit well with raising a family...

Furthermore, it makes perfect sense to me that the MC would not be able to have children as a natural cost to being able to live for ever. But it isn't a bad cost anyway, unless your goal is to lead and micro-manage an exponentially growing number of progeny as you continue to live for ever? Don't forget your children are very likely to rebel at some point! (LOL)

Anyhow, as far as I see it, being immortal but not having kids is a great idea (just look at Coiling Dragon to see why not), and I have no regrets at all for the lack of romance this causes.

---

Anyhow, with that out of the way, the world-building is top-notch. The different types of fighters, different types of clans, truly dangerous monsters, etc.: everything is cool and well balanced.

I found the fights to be particularly well choreographed - up to the current point the powers are fun and largely comprehensible.

My one small critique though: the MC is sometimes too much of a swindler, like when he profits massively by speculating on foodstuff during wartime, or when he haggles too relentlessly with merchants. These passages are few and far between though, and in general, the MC is truly outstanding in many ways, so it is fun to follow along, with just the right amount of tension and danger to keep you completely hooked! <<less
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Zhanxian
October 1, 2016
Status: c157
For a generic xianxia, it's pretty enjoyable, except that the romance is a big fail for me, and the MC is just so psychotic it becomes very creepy sometimes.

The karma bit is very interesting and fun (with the MC always communicating certain facts before he murders), and I liked how the MC has at least *some* moral bearing in life.

Or rather, since karma does allow one to answer harm with harm (ie: when someone seeks to harm you, the best strategy is not to just flee and be a passive... more>> victim, but rather typically involves some form of poetic justice, or 'harm' being done to the abuser), the MC has some merit in following a part of the idea, but in practice he seems to be abusing this angle too much (ie: he is min/max'ing this idea to get the best loot from the most reverse-victims possible).

Or rather, it just seems like his plan is lacking in obvious depth: he wishes to have power to defeat some grand future enemy - FOR WHAT, after he wins? As always, his goals past 'winning at all costs' are NIL.

So obviously, after a while, you inevitably get tired of his long-ass path to what will assuredly be a Pyrrhic victory.

---

Anyhow, the battles are usually well set up, but then they fail visually: most of the time, I can't visualize how his simplistic executioner's chop would win him the battle against his magician opponent with a flying sword. But whatever: everyone is happy he wins, since at least it feels like the stakes and the danger were real.

---

The romance is terrible, because it never works when you idealize things (or people) too much, or when you fail to realize that each and every person out there has enormous potential (ie: there are a lot of great alternatives, so don't get too hung up on anyone).

Then, it also gets hugely annoying for me how the MC loses his cool whenever his love interest is threatened or affected by anything. It ALWAYS works out for him to lose his cool (due to plot armor), but it feels very dumb to me, each time.

Clearly, the author is trying to make the chick be a huge part of the MC's life and motivation, but that only highlights how empty the MC's life is: he has nothing other than 'winning' and 'pleasing his girl'. Only, he doesn't seem to understand that he is being hugely over-attentive and lame, most of the time he is with her.

---

Where the psychotic MC goes over the top (IMO):
Spoiler

When he is trying to rope in psychotic beasts, he cynically explains to them how they just have to learn how to BS properly and they'll be able to kill PLENTY of people in society, *just like the MC*.

Clearly, the MC doesn't mind that these creatures that lust, want and need for the frequent murder of humans (innocent and otherwise) will be in the community...

The MC does not seem to have to fear unintended consequences (due to plot armor), but to me it was extremely creepy - very much like watching some revolting opportunist invite a pedophile into a community, and even help him hide his nature from his inevitable victims!

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We'll see how long it lasts, but even with all these negatives, the story is still enough fun for me to continue reading (as pulp fiction). <<less
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Terror Infinity
October 24, 2016
Status: v14
I enjoyed the story a lot until volume 14, at which point I ended up dropping it, but I still kept my rating fairly high (4) because it was very fun while it lasted.

For starters, while others are trashing the author's lack of inspiration in re-using old Hollywood movies rather than inventing his own stuff, I personally couldn't care less about this type of plagiarism, because the end result was original and GRIPPING.

In fact, considering how unoriginal and poorly done most Hollywood movies are (ex.: The Mummy, Starship... more>> Troopers, Resident Evil, etc.), I would say that the author mostly did an excellent job of taking those dumb crappy movies full of flat characters and turning them into living worlds with engaging characters and excellent tension.

Unfortunately, the author then went and wrecked the key sources of tension in his novel, and worse:
Spoiler

Once you discover that the teammates can be resurrected, all the tension disappears, because at that point you know that
1. The MC will res all his dead teammates (so their dying meant nothing)
2. The author obviously cares way too much about these teammates and will not let anything else happen to them from that point on.

From then on, the novel should have been renamed 'Terror NOT', since everyone the author cares about is obviously under complete and total plot armor.

To make matters worse, the dumb author actually uses a TIME SKIP to jump over the part of the story where most of the team are wiped out by by Team Devil! How did they all die, what was said, how it was done, and how much hate and resentment the team should have towards their nemesis: all of this is skipped by the author!!!

Even more annoying for me was the fact that the super-annoying white-knight teammate got resurrected along with the rest. As other reviewers have mentioned, the teammates are just 2D caricatures who never evolve, so any character flaws are there to stay.

So the dumb white-knight is that guy who does everything for any/all hot babes, no matter how lame it is for a man to be constantly used by women with NOTHING TO SHOW FOR IT. If the MC was a real friend, he might sit his buddy down at some point and explain how his 'defend women at all costs and in all circumstances' just means this dude is going to get used by them his whole life, without ever even being attractive to them at all (because women not-so-secretly despise massive saps).

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The Ultimate Evolution
October 9, 2016
Status: v3c68
Although the basic story is similar to Terror Infinity, the entire feel is completely different (even if some of the same movies are used), and I would rate it as equal to or better than TI (with less chapters released though, so we'll see how it holds up).

That being said, it really felt like the intro takes too long (before the MC reaches the evolution world), but it does serve as an interesting set of situations and dangers for the MC later on. I skipped some paragraphs at the... more>> beginning (especially when other characters than the MC were present) without regret, but luckily once the story got going I have not been wanting to skip text at all - things get better and generally stay better.

Personally I am OK with the solo MC aspect, since the Chinese LN authors clearly seem to do far better with solitary MCs. It's a shame, but it seems like most of them REALLY do not understand friendship or healthy synergy at all, so better to forgo it entirely and thus not have to deal with disappointingly 2D bizarro 'friends' and 'lovers'. (Or in other words: until/unless healed, psychopathy only fits with a solo life)

One big negative did crop up in V3, that nearly made me drop the story: although it is perfectly logical that if you are much weaker than your opponent, you have to use underhanded ways to defeat him, but normally you will have some clear reason and enmity that motivates such action, yet here it's rather JUST that we are supposed to treat the MC's victims as NPCs, even though they are clearly so life-like.

Spoiler

Most of the MC's victims are scum-of-the-earth pirate villains, or other villainous crooks, but in V3 the MC takes down this buff, charming, straight-shootin', straight-talkin' sub-boss who clearly only ever treated the MC right, and he does it in such a dragged out way, using every nasty trick the rat-bastard MC/author could dream up (because the damned 'high constitution' viking pirate rightly just will not quit/die and let himself be so poorly taken advantage of by such a rotten bitch MC!)

I identified far more with the viking than with the MC, which made things very horrifying.

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Luckily, this kind of situation only showed up once, to date, and otherwise it is pleasant to have an MC who is a bit smarter than usual, even if the world setting most likely does not make any real sense (ie: the reason for 'ultimate evolution' being forced on people is not going to make sense, nor will the god acting behind the curtain make any sense either).

One positive that can be said about the LN up to this point: the MC is kept pretty much constantly on the defensive in do-or-die scenarios where he needs to survive above all - this easily makes sense and is satisfying, compared to LNs where the MC quickly attains decisive power only to then clearly show how much of a creep he is.

Anyhow, I am enjoying it quite a bit, in spite of its flaws. <<less
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Demon Girl ~Tale of a Lax Demon~
November 12, 2016
Status: --
I'm giving it a 4, but that's only for the 1st volume, which was fun and rather edgy, with quite a bit of plot development.

The 2nd volume is terrible though, as the story devolves into an endless sequence of 6 year old princess tea parties interspersed with infrequent pseudo-horror scenes, as the MC can't decide if she wants to be ultra-popular or ultra-horrifying.

When you think about it though, her nonsensical, insipid, victim-playing, pointless and ultimately painful solitary life is horrifying, so it isn't surprising that she wants to... more>> lash out at the world she creates for herself. <<less
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