The Rise of Phoenixes


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Dynasties rise and dynasties fall, like the tide washing the sand.

On one side, he suffers from intrigue and hides his great ambition; on the other, the mysterious girl hides her anger behind her gentle smile.

Who toppled the country, establishing their dynasty?

Who built the Yellow Springs and set it over Imperial Power, inciting strife and conquering the earth?

Who exchanged gazes at the Nine Palaces to the sound of halberd and blood, watching the falling flowers of Acacia?

Who drank the poisoned wine and smiled, trading it for a cinnabar dot to the chest?

Tribulation and strife has destroyed past prosperity; he would not retreat, and she has not finished singing.

…. Is she disturbing the earth world, or is the world disturbing her?

This is a seemingly simple story about an era of recovering the old country and the fight for the throne, and the men and women on both sides.

To conquer or resist;
To push away or fight for chance.
To provoke or to still;
To love, or to refuse love.

Associated Names
One entry per line
Rising Phoenix
Related Series
Legend of Fu Yao (Shared Universe)
Hunting for a Delicious Wife (After) (1)
Major General Spoils his Soul-guiding Wife (1)
The Rebirth of the Malicious Empress of Military Lineage (1)
Recommendation Lists
  1. to be read
  2. (3)DESIRES OF THE HEART part 3
  3. Repository of Eventual Rereads (2)
  4. New Favorite Historical Romance (2022)
  5. Cultivation novels to cultivate my unfounded brain

Latest Release

Date Group Release
02/19/24 Ninja Reflection c273
02/12/24 Ninja Reflection c272
02/05/24 Ninja Reflection c271
01/29/24 Ninja Reflection c270
01/22/24 Ninja Reflection c269
01/15/24 Ninja Reflection c268
01/08/24 Ninja Reflection c267
01/01/24 Ninja Reflection c266
12/25/23 Ninja Reflection c265
12/18/23 Ninja Reflection c264
12/11/23 Ninja Reflection c263
12/04/23 Ninja Reflection c262
11/27/23 Ninja Reflection c261
11/20/23 Ninja Reflection c260
11/13/23 Ninja Reflection c259
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3 Reviews sorted by

saphire8626 rated it
March 27, 2022
Status: Completed
This is the book that the Netflix drama, Rise of Phoenixes, is adapted from. It's a distant sequel of the author's other book, which was adapted into the drama, Legend of Fu Yao. I binged Rise of the Phoenixes the past two weeks and hated the ending so much (it was changed to get past Chinese censors) that I downloaded this book, read the still ongoing translation by ninja-reflections, and then read the book.

WOW I have so many conflicted feelings about this.

The title of this novel translates roughly to... more>> 'power', but specifically referring to the power that the imperial family wielded back when there were still dynasties. The book opens with quite a bang. Feng Zhiwei, the main character, is drowning her step-aunt in the ice-cold pond in winter. She's seen by the love interest, Ning Yi, the sixth prince of the imperial family, who is one of the powers struggling for control of the throne. This sets off a chain of events where A LOT happens. A lot. This is a seriously mammoth book and so much happened lol.

The bad:
I had so many mixed feelings about this. The reviews of this book on Douban were quite polarized. Some people loved it, some people hated it. I kinda agreed with most of the criticisms. The biggest thing I had issues with was the writing style. It read like a high school writing assignment. It gets better towards the latter half of the book, but I struggled to get through the first 20% because the author just spammed descriptive phrases. Also, the author loved to use phrases that basically translate to, 'her beautiful, limpid eyes gazed at him', 'the beautiful woman (Zhiwei) smiled', 'her beautiful voice'... Also, the misogyny.

Misogyny: after reading a bunch of Chinese webnovels by female authors, I feel like misogyny and the oppressive patriarchy is this unconscious theme in a lot of the stories. Authors prefer male protagonists and male characters tend to be written much better - they're complex and likeable - while female characters often end up being b*tchy, s**tty, shallow, or powerless and weak. In this book, a bunch of the female side characters were either truly despicable and pitiful, or were motivated solely by their love for a man in their life.

Zhiwei herself starts out quite disdainful of most people of her gender, there was a lot of gender essentializing like 'women's biggest flaw is their soft heart' etc, and her best friend Hua Qiong and her are pretty much like superwomen. Zhiwei is fierce but has a kind heart, doesn't suffer fools gladly but shows mercy, undergoes suffering but is not ruined by it... She's both emotionally detached, extremely intelligent, powerful and ruthless, but also passionate, caring and kind. She's a little bit like a female power fantasy, a total Mary Sue. She gets to be a court official, a general, an Empress, a female Emperor... She is one of the most powerful players on the chessboard of politics and power.

Ning Yi is this idealized lover and a reversal of the usual hetero dynamics - he does everything because of love, he seems almost passive compared to her, he's pining pretty much the whole book, he lets her do whatever she wants and he kind of is a bit like the devoted, pining wife lol, she hurts him and tries to sabotage him and he just takes it and forgives her repeatedly...

Hierarchical societies and power struggles: the title already gives a clue. But a lot was said about how savage, ruthless and inhumane the struggle for the throne was. Power corrupts and ruins good people, and the more powerful you are, the less choice and freedom you have. Zhiwei and Ning Yi struggled to be together because of the way their society is like - Ning Yi's family and he himself caused the deaths of her family and people she loves, so she has to take revenge because he owes her a blood debt. At the end, Zhiwei realizes that this 'an eye for an eye' revenge mentality goes nowhere and just perpetuates and repeats violence over and over again... her mother, her elders, she herself, the imperial family, all trapped in cyclical revenge. At the end of the novel, she finally realized she needed to transcend it all.

The good:
The character arcs. Gu Nanyi is the second love interest. He becomes devoted to Zhiwei and because of her influence, he ends up knowing all the nuances of life, feels a range of emotions and emotionally 'thaws'. His arc is beautiful and at times, heartbreaking. I kind of hated that he became a love interest because I just wanted him to be her platonic soulmate.

Ning Yi and Zhiwei's arc was also pretty awesome. Zhiwei changed quite a lot by the end of the novel; she started out cynical and calculating but she became much kinder by the end. The scenes describing the tragedies that shaped her - her loss of innocence, loss of trust and love - and the turning points in her life - her decision to take Ning Yi down - were really moving.

I still feel that Shao Ning's character was one of the biggest tragedies in the novel. Her arc was just heartbreaking.

And a bunch of other awesome side characters that I'm too lazy to mention. But wow this book took me on an emotional trip. <<less
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littleredblossom rated it
June 6, 2020
Status: c5
I'm not sure if I should rate this based on translation, or content or how this works.

The translation and quality are both very good, and the plot seems interesting which is why I gave 5 stars.

But seriously, webnovel only translated 5 chapters. Translators would get leeway if they are fan translating and I really appreciate it. But webnovel is an official platform and can probably do much better.
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[email protected] rated it
February 14, 2019
Status: c1
I'm enjoying it so far after reading the prologue and finishing chapter 1. I see that only 5 chapters have been posted and I am concerned! Will there be more? It looks like there have not been any updates for 2 months! I don't want to get into the novel, only to have it slip away. I did have to read it a couple of times, in the beginning, to figure out what was happening and luckily, I got a little heads up from a blogger... more>> named Ninja who was able to give us an idea as to how the drama is different from the book, so I was prepared for Feng Xie Wei to behave a little differently. If someone can let me know that newer chapters will be released and updated, I would greatly appreciate it! THANK YOU! <<less
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