Great Tang Idyll


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The Great Tang countryside with the warm sunlight, the golden wheat, and white herons in flight.

Zhang Xiaobao: “I didn’t think my ability could change any great events. My thinking was simple—to change my family’s living conditions. But oftentimes, things don’t happen according to how you think it will. As I was working to improve my family’s living conditions, a lot of things happened. How do you say, hmm… Simply put, it was the butterfly effect? No, no, no, this metaphor is a bit too flashy. Crudely put, I am the rat turd dropped inside the pot.”

Wang Juan: “Ever since I came to this era together with an International Criminal Swindler, I declare that this world no longer has any swindlers.”

Translator’s Synopsis: A con-man and policewoman that are legends of their respective professions suddenly die and are reincarnated into the Tang dynasty of ancient China as little more than kids. Accepting their second chance and forced restart, they choose to use the modern knowledge and specific talents that they have from their previous lives in order to live comfortably in this new life. Read about their adventures and their accomplishments as they shape the past that is now their future into their own!

Great Tang Idyll average rating 4.6/5 - 147 user ratings
Associated Names
One entry per line
Pedesaan Dinasti Tang
Tang Dynasty Countryside
Tian Yuan Da Tang
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12 Reviews sorted by

kainee rated it
July 3, 2016
Status: Completed
Disclaimer: I read and finished the original Chinese novel and don't actively follow the translations.

The concept of the novel is different from a lot of the other reincarnation novels out there being translated right now since it's two people who are reincarnated at the same time-- one is the world's greatest con man while the other is the Chinese police woman tasked with arresting him. They died in a freak explosion and are reborn in ancient China together.

There is some suspension of disbelief required for the premise of this... more>> novel though I'm not sure how that is so different from some of the other reincarnation novels out there where the MC is reincarnated with a cheat ability or has a complete personality change? Personally, since I have read so many of such novels, I have grown rather picky in terms of the morality or ethics so I dislike it when the MC just kills someone with their rebirth (absorbing the original person's soul) or takes over another person's identity and life without batting an eye or feeling grateful for the second chance. Also, if you do not read carefully and get details such as the MC's ages wrong (they are reborn but wake up as 1 year olds rather than begin as complete newborns which could be a metaphor for cognitive awakening) and understand the basic characterization of the MCs (both MCs are very family-oriented and only want power so they can live comfortably and safely so expecting them to want to take over the world for the hell of it means you need to level up your reading ability), then this is not the novel for you. Also, if you are expecting a male MC with a generic character motivation of "kick the asses of everyone who looks at me wrong" or "the world should revolve around me so I will just treat everyone else like inconsequential NPCs," then you will also be disappointed.

This novel has 2 MCs, 1 male and 1 female. So some of the troubling misogynist connotations in other novels aren't so prevalent here since the author does take care to try to develop them both. The MC's different characters and mindsets are pretty well written and actually help make the couple dynamic interesting so it's not just watching a single MC going through a mind numbingly boring training sequence for the nth time while the rest of the faceless cast with interchangeable names gape in awe.

However, this novel has a slow pace and it is probably more focused on intellectual battles rather than actual fighting. So it is a rather political story. There is some action but it won't be for a while, which is understandable since the MCs are little kids at the start of the novel. And even then, it is probably a temporary focus since fighting with brains rather than brawn is the theme of this novel.

What makes this novel really enjoyable is that both the male and female MCs become pretty fully developed. I suspect the author is male though since I think the male MC is still the main focus and driver of the plot. But it is cool to basically have the female MC be the male MC's partner and not feel like she's just some interchangeable face in a harem of women. So if you're looking for a harem of onaholes for the MC to have badly written sex with, then this is also not the novel for you. Because she's been there with the male MC for the entire time, it really helps build up the feeling of companionship without having too many overt romantic scenes. So this was a novel that I really enjoyed for its romance even though it doesn't go out of its way to build up that subplot.


Some specific scenes or arcs to look forward to is the MC's establishment of a fake sage couple that are the masters of their real selves as a cover identity to explain why these miraculous inventions and concepts start appearing in Tang dynasty China. The arc where they inadvertently make the county officials believe that they're sacrificing years off their lifespan in order to get water for the drought-ridden county is a bit hilarious. The relationship that develops between the MCs and the Emperor is also really fun because it is long distance and the Emperor is the Emperor with his paranoia and political games but he still can't avoid being manipulated so masterfully by the MCs. The various technology crazes that the MCs set off get more and more awesome yet their progression makes total sense. Plus, the MCs childish appearances mean that sometimes people just deceive themselves without the MCs needing to do anything extra and it's great! And the amount of espionage in this novel is a bit crazy!

I really enjoy how fully fleshed out the characters are-- it's not just the MCs that the author makes come to life. What is interesting is that the female MC probably gets the closest in terms of character to the generic stereotype of the reincarnated OP MC since at one point, she uses the blood of her enemies to write a message on the floor that says, "Do you dare do this again?" The male MC can also be violent but not nearly so much as she is. LOL, what's funnier is that the male MC basically turns into an overprotective onii-chan later on to the point where he's also arguably an adorable siscon though not in a sexual way-- he tends to be self-designated protector of children so lolicons will die if he meets them.


So yeah, it was really enjoyable to read and I found the ending really satisfying, especially if you consider it all started out with 2 1 year old kids born to mildly well-to-do landowners with farms. <<less
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ninthlite rated it
July 1, 2016
Status: --
The world's greatest scam artist and a top tier cop are reincarnated to ancient china. Interesting concept, however the male lead is dragged down by the heroine. In their first life the male lead was one of the world's richest men, the heroine was just a top tier cop. She is hardly his match in anyway.

The story could of been interesting as the male lead could of acquired power by scamming his way to the throne, however the heroine limits him to slow bushiness schemes, due to reasons like honor... more>> and justice. The novel would be way more entertaining if he just ditched her. She literally has zero use in the story, the male lead literally does everything and she just sticks around being a dead-weight. He probably could beat her in a fight, so she is not even use as a meat shield.

Another point that makes me disinterested is the unrealistic representation of children in this novel. The bodies are just a few months old and they are thinking, talking, and walking. Babies don't work that way, they literally do not have the brains to process these actions. It is like a person reincarnating into a person with half their brain missing and then they start walking around and acting like normal. It is immersion breaking to read about month old babies creating business empires. <<less
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Chao rated it
June 11, 2016
Status: v1c4
Good translation quality and grammar. Story has quite an interesting start with two interesting characters from the start.
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Guradu Gilgida
Guradu Gilgida rated it
July 22, 2016
Status: v1c23
Rational MC with supporting heroine. The MC is like a express-train with his schemes while the heroine acts the brake in a good sense. Instead of blocking or denying the MC' plans blatantly, she gives a different solution to solve the problem; which is rare to be seen in novels nowadays.

From the translation side, I really like how the translator explains the back-story/history of the words used in his TL-Notes at the end of each chapters. It feels like I'm studying the ancient Chinese literature.
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miss xu
miss xu rated it
August 26, 2016
Status: c38
Very good novel.

They're so intelligent I want to cry. Although they are reincarnated, just imagine a one year old acts like them with those knowledge.. people will freak out!

I sometimes find my mind goes blank every time I'm reading this novel.

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Kurogakuro rated it
August 6, 2016
Status: v1c27
Great story with a male and female as lead characters. Both make up for what the other lacks and they contrast each other nicely. While not overly different they do have different set of skills and morals, they both consult each other when it comes to decision making. Nice to see a strong male and female lead with unique personalities.

A lot of world building is involved, because the characters are from present time they introduce new ideas that the past time has yet to discover. The side characters aren't... more>> card board cut outs and each has their own purpose and thoughts that are shown through out the story. Overall this is a great read if you're looking for a slower paced story with good character development.

The translator is also top notch. At the bottom of every chapter are notes on terms with their meaning and even links. <<less
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Tachi Works
Biah_belle rated it
July 15, 2016
Status: v1c19
Normally when there's a transmigration, the invading personality kills off old personality but doesn't care about its past life and is forced to adapt. However since the cop and conman reincarnate together, they maintain their past lives as well as have someone to consult with, recall the past, share their mindsets according to their original time period.

As the conman said to the cop lady, "even if you found a decent dude here, you still can't escape the mysoginistic thoughts and expectations he would have according to this time period". So... more>> the conman can grant her freedom of movement as a male watching out for her, rather than leaving her abandoned as a "female with weak body in male dominated society but strong spirit". I know I'm incorrectly using transmigration examples when this is a reincarnation story but since they reincarnated at 1 year of age~ it's whatever. <<less
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xenocross rated it
August 25, 2016
Status: c102
Political move, economic battle! Invent food to get money, use money to bribe officials, buy cheap unwanted land and turn it into goldmine

Manipulate government, neighbors, enemies, and everyone else! This is a very good story.

The translator also explain the Chinese idioms and poetry used in the story. Hilarious, the MCs regarded as genius when they recite poem, because the great poem originally is not written until hundred years later.
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Zeckzen rated it
July 4, 2016
Status: --
Fluffy strory, good story to those that want change of pace from mainstream story
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stima rated it
November 25, 2016
Status: c45
I am surprise that this novel is not well-known among readers. It is such a good and solid story. It was quite pleasant reading this novel, the pace is very good, not slow and not fast. I always find it very satisfied with each chapter. I admire the author's approach, it is quite logical, rational and well it is brain over brawn. I like how the author paid attention to every details regarding each events. Especially I find it amusing in the arc about cucumber. I will not spoil this... more>> arc, if you are interested pls read it yourself.

If you are a person who loves reading story about human's real intelligence and ingeniousness, you will love this story. Don't bother if you love reading novel that main character solves the problem by using violence and power to oppress others. <<less
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October 29, 2016
Status: c40
The two lead characters are adorable, and while I can accept one year old kids talking, I would preffer if they still had trouble with a few worlds like babies still forming their teeth.

The pacing is very, VERY slow, 40 chapters in and they are still babies; so prepare yourself.

The translation is also tedious with too many "[honorific] [in-law]", i'ts acceptable to lose some of the chinese culture in speech when translating to another language, it would be better if it was just explained once, instead of ruining... more>> the reading experience. <<less
2 Likes · Like Permalink | Report
Skoonting rated it
August 28, 2016
Status: v1c38
Incredibly well written and interesting. The main problem I have is that it's incredibly slow-paced, and uses a lot of ancient and modern chinese vocabulary and meanings that you constantly have to look up. Also, the fact that the MC's are both one-year olds that can walk and talk is something that you need to suspend your disbelief for, but I don't particularly mind that part all that much.
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