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maiha-sama
maiha-sama rated it
Great Han’s Female General Wei Qiqi
August 15, 2017
Status: Completed
Not as cliched as the other time travel novels in that the MC has her own personality. Shes not the cheat-bearing, cold-assassin types we see so often. WQQ uses her modern knowledge in war making her an idea-god. I thought the first third of the novel was the best - the bits of war in the desert.

One thing I hated was how the author kept harping about how the MC looked. Initially it was that she was ugly AF. I mean, literally EVERY paragraph has the word ugly in it.... more>> "An ugly guy like you.." "Such an ugly woman".. At one point I was just sooo frustrated.

Now lets talk about the ML shall we? Typical fare - ice cold turned hot mess after he falls for the MC.

Spoiler

Here's the thing though. The only reason he consummated the marriage was because he didn't want her to have the freedom to be with another man. Lucky for him, she turns drop dead gorgeous. He cant seem to live without her after that. Hell, none of the royal males in the kingdom can bear to see her with her own husband after they see that face.

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Anyways, I felt absolutely nothing for the ML. He was so boring and spineless. His love and determination never shone through until much, much later. Until then, all he did was get jealous and sleep with the MC. Sigh.

The emperor is another pain. Less said, the better.

Spoiler

She's your brother's wife for f$$$'s sake!

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My favorite chapter was the last (a) well, cause it ended keke (b) it was a pretty decent wrap (c) HE. <<less
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maiha-sama
This book rips my heart to shreds but I just cant stop reading!!! The writing is lovely, completely draws you in from the get go. Helps that the translator is doing a great job.

Initially, there were events where the ML acts ruthlessly towards the MC and I hated him with a vengeance. But as you read on, you see his behavior is a farce and he truly does care for her. Unfortunately he is not in a position to show it. Many books talk about compromises a sovereign has to... more>> make to keep their position. However, this is truly the first time I felt that even a mighty Emperor may be put in situations where he is completely hopeless, where he cannot snatch his happiness, having to put on an act to save the one he loves.

I know we're only 16-odd chapters in but I have a feeling I'm in this for the long haul. It gives me the same intense feeling I felt when reading Hua Xu Yin, which is one of my favorite tragedy-ish novels. This one is a HE though, so I'm really looking forward to it.

4 Stars at the moment. Will re-rate once the novel is complete. <<less
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maiha-sama
maiha-sama rated it
Jiang Hu’s Road is Curved
May 23, 2017
Status: Completed
OMG Please read this!!!! This was such a pleasant surprise. Here I started off thinking its one of those run of the mill reincarnation stories. BUT!! KABOOM!!! My ships came crashing down. Haha.. It was just delicious. I get so thrilled when I meet a story that exceeds my expectations.

The story starts off pretty light and silly and it does stay pretty wistful for the most of the first part. And then I was floored. The author did me in. Haha. I went from utterly in love with to -->... more>> disbelief to --> hate with a vengeance to --> complete disgust to --> scorn to --> uneasy pity for 'someone'. In all, this has everything you want from a Josei: a sweet romance, meaty characters, drama, betrayal, revenge and then some.

At first, the MC is, simply put, delusional. Believing that all males must be attracted to her, she fails miserably. This is essentially a story of her growing up and taking off her rose tinted glasses. The male characters are very interesting and they all have flaws which is so refreshing! Sometimes you feel like throwing a brick at them.

Spoiler

All was well till the last few chapters and then it just wrapped up like the author was in a hurry to use the restroom :/ why? I feel like the MC just settled with what she got. She was so fiery and lovely at the beginning. Surely, growing up doesn't necessarily mean you become docile and lose your personality. I'd understand if she remained duller than her earlier self - that's only natural. Here though, she just seemed to accept everything that came and quietly retreated into her box.

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But I loved it all the same. To the translator who did a fab job: one big kiss :) <<less
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maiha-sama
maiha-sama rated it
Rolling love
May 1, 2017
Status: Completed
This was a reasonably satisfying read if you like angst and secrets. In most angsty romances, the misunderstandings arise because the main characters are incapable of communicating their feelings, sometimes for no reason at all. Rolling Love succeeds because it clearly gives us a reason for why they cannot talk to each other. While there are still a lot of instances where you feel like slapping the ML for being a jerk, the rare insights we get into his thoughts definitely make him appear more fragile and pitiful.

The novel is... more>> engaging for the most part and you can really feel the attraction between the main leads. However, the last chapter was a frenzy and it felt too formulaic. The epilogue was sweet and made up for a lot of frustration I felt in the last few chapters. But!

Spoiler

I wish the author had spent more time on describing the effort the two put into their relationship after the female lead decided to go back to to him. Considering what the two have gone through, it would have been interesting to see how the male lead reacted to her return and how they worked through their issues. One chapter would have done it.

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In all a decent piece; Miumiu's insights were also interesting to read. <<less
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maiha-sama
maiha-sama rated it
Faithful to Buddha, Faithful to You
February 4, 2017
Status: Completed
This is a beautifully written book. There are a lot of complicated emotions at play here. The longing and surrender, the courage of the characters, their choices are all captivating. I loved how the time travel elements drove the plot and how the consequences were woven into the story. They made the character interactions feel more fragile and therefore, meaningful. It wont fail to warm your heart and make you teary at the same time. Faithful to Buddha, Faithful to You could have gone wrong on so many levels considering... more>> the religious connotations and what the author is setting out to establish; but the book shines - and how! The choices made by the characters never felt illogical or over dramatic. Particularly refreshing to have have a love story depicting problems that were not caused by inaction, lack of communication and needless contriving. Absolute pleasure to read. The time travel book of all time travel books. <<less
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maiha-sama
maiha-sama rated it
Gentle Beast
March 30, 2018
Status: Completed
This is a short, pleasant, no hassle read. Our FL lead falls out of a bus window and ends up in a world where humans are extinct. She's surrounded by beasts on all sides, left with limited help from her 'space'. Her adventures keep you interested and her struggles feel very plausible. You empathize with her situation on several occasions.

I feel Ou had the potential to be a really great FL but ended up just a bit short of my expectations. It feels like the author positioned her as a... more>> kickass MC who's not necessarily OP but can take care of herself.. But lost the thread mid way. I liked how the relationship between the leads developed. Especially, how Ryan made an effort to accept and understand her perspectives because that is such a rarity even amongst human beings. The relationship issues that came from dating a 'beast' were drawn up well. And that ending was just special. Definitely worth a read. <<less
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maiha-sama
maiha-sama rated it
The Rebirth of the Malicious Empress of Military Lineage
January 9, 2018
Status: Completed
This book will ruin all the rebirth/reincarnation novels for you. Its just THAT good. Most of the other novels I read before/after aren't able to hold a candle to this, honestly. So please drop whatever else you're doing and pick up this one!

Adding a spoiler tag owing to the length ^^

... more>>
Spoiler

Lets get the facts straight: theres no drop dead gorgeous MC, no OP-ness, no cheats, no band of male leads falling for her. Its pure smarts with a slooow burn. We have the regular family villains as appetizers and the stakes get higher as we progress. Thankfully we have none of those nonsensical shameless characters, fairies and what not. You can see why each of the villains/circumstances are challenging. Another thing I liked is that the villains are reasonably smart.

What I really like about Shen Miao is that she is quick and ruthless. Other novels have the same villains that keep cropping up like cockroaches, hating for no solid reason. But when our Empress goes for the kill, its game over.. So I was very surprised at first. Our Empress was a stupid fool in 'love' in her last life and had to learn things the hard way. In this life, she simply exudes majesty in everything she does. The things she managed to accomplish were without any outside help. She's just a girl (with a lousy reputation, might I add) without any power to speak of. The schemes she plays out are well planned and oh so completely satisfying. As badass as it gets.

Coming to the romance, I saw a few reviews complaining about the non-existent romance. I don't think thats true at all. In books like DWFGF, I failed to see why the ML likes the MC so much. But the ML in this one has to be one of the best I've read. Though he's got his own agenda, smart, good looking (uh huh.. As if we didn't pick up on that already) and most of all genuinely cares for our girl. He doesn't fall immediately.. It's slow and steady but you can feel the intensity ramp up. You know exactly why he got interested, why he falls. Initially, XJX comes off as a mysterious, carefree, flirty jerk but he grows on you. I love the mental and physical chemistry they share. So the romance is not cotton candy sweet but quite epic all things considered. The wedding bit is actually so sweet and I feel they're perfect together. A great power couple.

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Unlike other rebirth novels you can see character development in this one. Also the side characters like the Su brothers, Shen Miao's cousin brother are so loveable and they grow on you. Extra points for female characters that actually like the MC, Tan and An Ning. I found myself completely supporting their love lines. I also liked Pei Lang's development a lot.

You know a book is good when you can read it more than once and feel tingly excitement every single time. Well rounded, well balanced and hugely satisfying. <<less
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maiha-sama
maiha-sama rated it
One Night, One Day, One Year, One Lifetime
November 19, 2017
Status: c13
This was a great read. Tragically heartbreaking. The flow and writing was simple but beautiful and you can really see the characters develop. Considering it was only 13 chapters, the author did a great job of showing us two viewpoints and evoking feelings for them both. There are so many novels that dedicate tens of chapters but fail to elicit a sliver of pity or understanding for their characters. The only other novel that was as short and effective was probably Mulberry Song.

I didn't agree with so many decisions He... more>> Yujin and Gao Fei made. Despite that, I wanted to truly understand what drove them to make those flawed decisions.

Spoiler

They say "Death is a Tragedy.. But only for the Living". Gao Fei went back to his regular life and he tried his best to deceive himself into thinking this was what he wanted. The more he lived, the more boxed in he felt, more detached. I like how the details of Fei's mental illness are not revealed explicitly.. Just tidbits peppered throughout. It allows you to imagine the extent and severity of his love for Yujin and how deeply he has deceived himself. I've found his character is really memorable - the price you have to pay for being too prideful and too stubborn

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I must add, the translation is clean and seamless - translator does a fab job with all her novels.

Anyway, you should read this. <<less
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maiha-sama
maiha-sama rated it
The Wolf Lord’s Lady
August 14, 2017
Status: c20
Overall this is a pretty decent novel. I especially liked the initial 7-8 chapters because I thought the main characters inner conflict was portrayed very well. Torn been her family and love, right and wrong, she is reincarnated and forced to live in close proximity to the one who betrayed her. The initial setup was bang on for me. And then, it sort of went downhill. The middle, instead of being meaty and solid turned out to be unnecessarily wordy. The wordage was complex when it needn't have been. So... more>> the FL's inner monologues are filled with fake drama like "the mistake you made" or "I'm a liar" -- you'll spot these as you read. Not required IMO. It became tiresome to read all that unnecessary text. But it's a HE and the latter fluff made it satisfactory. So I'll say it's decent but not a must read by any means. <<less
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maiha-sama
maiha-sama rated it
To Be A Virtuous Wife
May 23, 2017
Status: c123
Absolute love. This is a great example of a novel that doesn't need an overly convoluted plot or complex writing to be compelling, sweet and satisfying.

Qing Ju is one of my favorite female characters - she is lazy, realistic, street smart, mature and independent. She plays her cards right and makes sure she gets to do what she wants. Overall, she is pretty badass. Her and He Heng are quite the perfect foil for each other. He Heng seems to be boring at first, but as we read on, he... more>> is as scheming as he needs to be. He's a solid ML - a quiet black belly. By pulling the strings in the shadows, he was also able to make things play out the way he wanted. He deserved to be big boss.

So there's no surprise romance angle or anything - it is pretty much laid out at the start. Initially I was hoping there would be a third wheel to spice things up but after finishing the novel, I'm convinced the main ship deserves the sturdiness it had - despite everything. The endearing moments between the lead couple are a treat. A few scenes were really impressionable (QJ shouting at HH, the walk down the Palace stairs, the lantern festival) and will stay with me for a long time.

The slow build up of trust between the leads is whats worth reading and when that turns to love, its the cherry on the cake. The feelings that simple, quiet actions can convey are weightier than the feelings three words can hope to confirm. I especially liked how He Heng was accepting of her true personality and didn't ask her to change, ever. He covered for her and protected her. Though he was tempted at times, he didn't give in. It was lovely to read.

I was surprised at the amount of heartache I felt when reading about Rui Wang. It just ate me up.

The Chinese ranks could be confusing at first but as you read similar novels, it becomes easier to relate to them. So I'm glad to have read the novel with the terms untranslated.

Don't be surprised if you called yourself chen qie

on occasion.

Bengong is off for a cup of tea :) <<less
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maiha-sama
maiha-sama rated it
Come and Eat, Shan Shan
April 26, 2017
Status: Completed
Shan Shan is a fluffy, light series thats easy on the brain and feels. The story feels like a typical Korean rom-com but it is enjoyable nonetheless. While the story is not as good as "A Slight Smile is Very Alluring" it has its own merits. Shan Shan is an adorable character and I liked the OTP with Feng Teng. However, the love happens very fast and abruptly and it would have been nice to see the romance build up gradually.

The most fun part for me were the extras with... more>> the kids keke <<less
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maiha-sama
maiha-sama rated it
The Legend of Sun Knight
July 27, 2017
Status: side story 19
hohoho... one of my favourite books ever!! My very first CN.

Grisia is the most adorable black-bellied MC. When I started reading the first book, I almost brushed it off as too childish. Luckily I continued on and am I glad.

Initially it comes across as a very light hearted story of Grisia the troll and his band of knights (all of whom have their adorable quirks) I thought it was quite childish. As you read on, the plot becomes increasingly complex and dark. Deceit, sacrifice, bromance and friendship intertwine as you... more>> delve deeper into the story and see Grisia grow as a person. Its brilliant how the humour is maintained throughout - laugh out loud moments combined with dark humour.

You wont regret reading this! Perfect shoujo fare despite the lack of a romantic line. <<less
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maiha-sama
maiha-sama rated it
Falling Dreams of Fang Hua
May 1, 2017
Status: c65
I really don't know how to describe my feelings for this series. On one hand, I liked Fang Hua, he was innocent, pure and in all a decent character. On the other, I felt no sympathy for the Crown Prince or the MC. Most times the endless pain they put themselves through could have been avoided if they just opened their mouths and spoken to each other. But who does that anyway huh.

It started off interesting but as it progressed, it felt like misunderstandings were just being randomly thrown in... more>> to make the story appear complicated. Many times the MC did things that were reckless/did not make sense.

Spoiler

The gay-not gay thing just tired me out after a while. Also, the Crown Prince~now~Emperor took advantage of her amnesia to sleep with her and then he sends her back to Fang Hua as a 'service'. That was just despicable.

Truthfully, the most pitiful are probably the 7 princes she was baby-sitting. I liked reading their back stories and it looked like the MC really made a difference in their lives.

I think I would have liked this more if the ending had turned out differently. Some redeeming factor. Alas. Even with the whole immortal setup, we just never saw the two be happy as Fang Hua and Shao-er and that was just sad

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The writing style was average and a lot of effort was spent describing how beautiful Fang Hua and his cinnabar mole were (sigh). Mostly we were just told that character X likes Y and were expected to believe it was true, with no situational examples.

Not to say I disliked the novel. It was just fine. <<less
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maiha-sama
maiha-sama rated it
A Slight Smile is Very Charming
April 26, 2017
Status: Completed
Breezy and fun. A cute, sugary romance that starts off in the MMORPG and fuses with real life. What I liked was the portrayal of the female MC - she is pretty badass in the game and can stand up for herself when needed. In real life though, she comes across as a little more timid and at times lovestruck/clueless. But I like how she is a private person, not wanting to use her outstanding looks to gain an upper hand. Even with her relationship with Xiao Nai, she doesn't... more>> feel the need to be over expressive/talkative. Xiao Nai is well, perfect lol. Although I do feel he is depicted as too perfect - some flaws would have brought out more of a... ahem, flavour? I don't know - for example, Feng Teng (and his smart tongue) from the Shan Shan series seems more real to me. I love him all the same. So yes, if I could have asked for more from this series, it would be that Xiao Nai be made more believable in some way. I would have also liked to see some more Xiao-Wei combined badassery in the game.

I watched the TV Drama as well and was stoked they stuck to the book so much - enjoyed that as well. <<less
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maiha-sama
maiha-sama rated it
My Disciple Died Yet Again
April 26, 2017
Status: c209
Love, LOVE, LOOOVE this series!

This one has all the tropes but so wonderfully parodies them and makes them its own. The MC's internal dialogues are hilarious and thoroughly enjoyable. Her one liners and cussing will make you laugh out loud. She is one of my favourite female leads - feisty, direct and funny. Truth be told, I found her cussing strangely relatable (coming from an asian culture, its not too rare to find people, esp older folks, swear like this; makes it funnier for me).

The male lead is strong, clueless... more>> and just adorbs af. Story wise, it is filled with cliches but the unveiling/circumstances behind the different deaths keep you interested.

The translator is doing a wonderful job as well. I had to go machine translate the raws because I just couldn't wait. Obviously, the M-TL did it no justice tsk tsk and I felt I would be missing out on the nuances that really make this an enjoyable series. So I will just calmly wait for the english translation.

In all, an effortless and undoubtedly enjoyable read! 5 stars. <<less
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maiha-sama
maiha-sama
Chaos Of Beauty
May 23, 2017
Status: Completed
For me, this novel left a very bad after-taste. The premise was lovely and it had all the ingredients to make it a solid romance. No matter how much I tried, I could not bring myself to agree with the decisions the MC made. She is supposed to be very intelligent - which of her actions support this statement, pray tell? None. Her choices are questionable to say the least. I was devastated after a certain event and just absolutely frustrated-enraged towards the end of the novel.

The translation is a... more>> solid A+ which is what compelled me finish reading this.

Spoiler

why MC? Why? Why would you choose that bastard? He has always reneged on whatever he has told you. Even went back on his promise to the lady he supposedly loved. Even used her as exchange! He never gave you his time/affection/respect when you married in. Suddenly out of nowhere, he realizes that the one he loves isn't the woman he's been secretly meeting at the Palace for months - it's you. How. Convenient. Do you expect me to believe he actually left everything and went away with her because of their love? That is his redemption? HA! I think he had just done too much damage in the Palace

in the first place. Probably wouldn't have kept his head if he stayed. What about the poor girl he played and flung at another man? Is she even happy? Does her life not matter at all. What if he does the same thing to the MC? The author just chose the easy way out.

Truth be told, I wouldn't have minded even if she had ended up with the Emperor. It seemed like he was developing real feelings for her and would be good to her in the future. In my heart though, the General would have been the best choice. He loved her and she cared for him deeply too. A

lovely, awkward relationship that I can believe would have lasted for a long long time. The special that spoke about how the General and her almost saw each other that the temple (in Ch 1) just broke my heart. So close.

I would have happily rated this a 5 if she had divorced the numb-nut and flown into the arms of the General. I call BS.

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maiha-sama
This was by far one of the worst books I have read. The synopsis here led me to believe the MC was someone who had her own notion of love and loyalty and refused to compromise them just because she was a woman and society expected her to conform with her husband's behaviour (whatever it would be). I was expecting to see a determined, normal faced MC bring down all the delusions of a privileged ML. Ugh. What a waste of my time. As I read on, an insane amount... more>> of rage welled in my stomach.

Spoiler

The ML is arrogant, s*xist, a rapist and believes he is entitled to whatever he wants. He has no shred of compassion or understanding of what it means to love someone. The MC clearly stated her intentions, and he was (understandably, considering the era) bewildered. Did he think there was a need to take one night out of his rape sessions to have a heart to heart about what the MC believed in? Of course not. Because love is pampering her and having s** everyday. WTF. I am appalled at how casually he forces himself on her (by incapacitating her nonetheless) in the name of love. That is just all sorts of wrong. If there were awards for most loathsome male lead, QEL would be a direct finalist

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The characters are so shallow and have nothing endearing to speak of. The MC was promising at first and then turned out to be such a disappointment that I just couldn't bring myself to care.

Spoiler

I pushed myself to read to the end hoping there would be a deliverance of some kind. I wanted to see the ML suffer and lead a miserable, lonely life and finally see his ex and child living a free, happy existence with a better man she encountered on the mountain. Author, I am so disappointed in you.

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Honest advice, don't even bother.

PS. I think the translator did a good job despite this series being what it is and I really appreciate their efforts. My one star is only for them. <<less
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maiha-sama
maiha-sama rated it
One Life, One Incarnation – Beautiful Bones
May 27, 2017
Status: Completed
Interspersed with a lot of Chinese Literary poetry and art references, OLOI - Beautiful Bones is worth a read. The premise was very interesting in that she retains memories of a previous life with her and the ML. It didn't seem to follow through down that road though. The MC appears

like she's straight out of a period setting, stuck in the modern world. The only purpose the memories served were to find her old flame and impress him/his family with her literary knowledge. She seems to be

content playing a demure... more>> wife to the ML - slightly different from her past life. Anyhow, this is a mellow romance that takes time to sweeten. There's no third wheel or crafty schemes at play (okay.. Maybe just one). So zero romantic angst.

What I liked were the beautiful lines thrown in from time to time. So meaningful, so poignant. I liked that the ML was not earth shatteringly handsome but a nerd interested only in his research. The author succeeds in creating an atmosphere that feels like time has slowed down. It was interesting to read.

There were parts I didn't enjoy too much. As many have said before, the pace is very slow so not many would have the patience for it. I almost dropped the book somewhere around the middle.
Spoiler

The ML's background is vague and sometimes things go way over the top. The second brother's scheme was WTF - what was that? Poor Wang Man who ended up losing the baby!

I also thought Wen Xing's devotion to Mei Xing was really touching. Mei Xing's love for the MC as well - very subtle but it is a definite repeat of their past life.

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It would have been great if the past life had been explored more. For me that one last chapter was more interesting than the rest of the book.

Overall, it was good while it lasted but it wasn't

particularly moving or memorable. For example, I don't think I would remember the characters/story after a few years. <<less
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maiha-sama
Reading this just breaks my heart. Its a different way of storytelling for this genre.. Peppering the present with the events of the past. Its actually very well done - very smooth so you don't feel it is awkward as you read in. The contrast in her past love-struck idiotic behavior and the present indifference - its just so jarring and so sad. The past-present narrative only accentuates the contrast. Throughout the story, whether intentionally or not, there's a thread of melancholy even in the seemingly light interactions. Many times... more>> she cruelly mocks herself and her past actions, its quite tragic to read. I've never read a character like her - I like it.

A carefree loving girl is forced to dress as a male and falls in love with her childhood friend. You can feel her complete diffidence when she interacts with Yan Ping and her fearlessness when dealing with anything else. A more-or-less simple girl, betrayed by ones she loved/trusted, forced to grow up into an indifferent woman who can now only worry about surviving.

Spoiler

Some of the lines in Chapter 11 show her helplessness: "I look up to the tall and lofty Feng Zhao Wen from the ground. I feel like I have hit rock bottom long ago. No matter how many people kicks and tramples over me, the one person who cares for me is no longer here. No matter how much I stumble and suffer, everything will bring no difference." I really felt bad for her at this point.

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I like how she gradually grows from indifferent to aware, to confident and then to bold. The way she dealt with the court and the ladies towards the end was hilarious! The ML has a big big role to play in her development. Somehow, I felt bad for him after we were shown the whole picture. The multiple POV epilogues made the book even better. Recommended! <<less
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maiha-sama
maiha-sama rated it
My Mister Ostrich
May 1, 2017
Status: epilogue
This is a lovely series and I enjoyed it very much. The writing is very descriptive and vivid, so it is easy to get a feel of the characters and their emotions. Makes you connect with them and feel the whole roller coaster of emotions from jealousy to happiness to sympathy to awe.

It is quite difficult to imagine the daily life of a disabled person and while I am not entirely aware if the things described are accurate (using feet to cook etc), they certainly seemed plausible. I felt very... more>> emotional reading certain parts - the fathers rejection, the mothers selfishness, Ming Xi's determination to be independent and the fact that his future choices were limited - not because he was mentally incapable, but because he was physically unable to do certain things. A lot of the situations seemed real.

What I especially loved about the book is that the FL never saw him in a different light because he was disabled. Neither did his close friends. What I loved even more, is that Ming Xi despite his issues and family problems proved that he was so wonderful even without his arms. I am so happy he got the ending he deserved.

The characters developed well over the course of the novel and one can relate with how each of them feel at that moment. The pacing was also just right so that by the end, you feel like you really lived their lives. A hugely satisfying piece. <<less
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