oh my god. where do I even begin. this novel is just the most gorgeous original novel I've ever found on webnovel. let me just say that first. my overall review is not a perfect 5 stars, but more on that below. [overall rating: 4.6 stars] this is probably the highest rating I've ever given any novel haha, especially since I'm being completely honest with my review below & not sugar coating anything. [writing quality: 5 stars] stunning. that's the best word to describe the writing. absolutely stunning. the author shows a clear display of prowess with grammar, vocabulary, and syntax. so much of the imagery and words of foreshadowing resemble poetry, almost. the flowing prose is exquisite and quotable in so many lines. the best thing is that the FL, youshi, loves poetry too. the quotes of poetry & the resemblance to poetry in the actual writing is gorgeous. though there are still mistakes once in a while, they're all minor & barely noticeable & this barely affected my overall reading experience. I would say that the quality of the writing beats 95% of novels on webnovel. that's how good it is. it's probably b/c the beauty of the writing that really made me love this novel so much from the start too, haha. [stability of updates: 5 stars] though the author never explicitly noted anywhere (or so I believe. at least, not in the synopsis) what the update schedule is, a look at the currently published chapters shows that the author does have a schedule of some sort. even though the updates aren't as frequent as the majority of readers desire (but honestly, webnovel readers are crazy with how much they demand authors to write), I think many people forget that this section of the rating is determined by /stability/ of updates, not frequency of updates. so hopefully, future readers do not score low on this section b/c the updates are really truly stable as of this moment! it's honestly impressive that the author can put out such quality at the speed that they do. my one suggestion is to get a solid schedule & mention it somewhere in the synopsis so your readers will have an idea. a solid updating schedule can also bring you a lot more readers :) [story development: 4 stars] as I've only read up to 14 chapters at this moment (& there are only 14 chapters out, so... ), it's still a little early to tell exactly how high this score should be, but so far, so good. (that's really one of the only reasons for why I don't want to give a full 5 stars yet) the author has given lots of foreshadowing in the writing. it's especially delightful to read the parts where youshi is almost narrating from the future, quoting the things that she may do in the future as to provide a shocking reminder to the reader of the direction her story is heading. I personally don't find the story paced too slow. by webnovel standards, is it? yes. but the events in the story unfold naturally, and I honestly prefer this healthy progression of the plot in comparison to whatever webnovels generally have w/ instant romance in like the first 10 chapters. I'm also a fan of slow paced stories, so perhaps this could be because this is my preference, and therefore I can be a bit biased... but really, I'm loving the plot development so far. so grateful for works not filled with cliches from chapter to chapter. the only complaint I really have is that during a few of the earlier chapters, where youshi's life got turned around as her true identity was revealed to her, things did seem a little bit rushed-- I feel like I couldn't quite see the emotions that clearly during that part & this just happened so suddenly, but otherwise, everything else is fine! [character design: 4 stars] again, this rating isn't a perfect 5 stars b/c it's a little too early to tell yet. it makes me a little shocked at first to learn that youshi is 15-- she's so mature for 15-- but I guess that with the situations that she went through and the time period she's in, it does logically make sense for why she behaves that way. all of the characters have their layers and emotions, so it's really appreciated that side characters are given a chance to have some depth as well, which is very rare for webnovel. the author does repeatedly mention that not all characters are as they seem though, and this bothers me a little bit, just because I think that readers don't deserve hints like this. it would be more emotionally wrenching whenever characters readers did not expect to act like such to be revealed to the readers, and I think the impact of those future chapters would be a lot better if the author didn't mention the overlooking characters part. (or, if it's really necessary, once is enough). also, this makes me very paranoid/suspicious of every character, which is not a fun experience while the story is still in the light hearted stage. I can't wait to see how the main characters develop to become who they're hinted to become in the synopsis. :) & also, again, I'm really grateful that romance is not instant in this! I think the author did mention that romance would take a while in a comment, and this is a fact very appreciated with me. <3 [world background: 5 stars] the author is clearly very well versed & has a deep understanding of chinese culture! so many authors on webnovel write chinese characters/worlds but have so little understanding of the culture that it's kind of irritating to see some of them write the things that they do. but the culture in this novel is especially immersive without being like some other novels where the author forces random pinyin words down the reader's throat every couple sentences. I believe that the setting of this novel is during the sui dynasty (or around that time) but I could be wrong on that. wondering if the novel is set in an accurate historical background, or is the author going to make more fictional events with this? but anyways, the world background is just great. it's the perfect amount of world building and story development at the same time-- no giant info dumps-- and the descriptive writing, once more, helps bring the world to life! with all that said, overall, this novel is just amazing!! 10/10 rec. it exceeds so many webnovel standards, and I can't wait to see how the story & characters develop. hopefully, it'll be getting some more readers in the future so that more can appreciate this gorgeous novel. I'm also veeeeerryy picky with the kind of novels I like to read. (my standards are a little too high lol) so far, there have been 0 original novels that have lasted in my library. this is the 1st one that I hope I'll be able to read until the end! :D
Updated Author's Review Hi everyone! Since I started rewriting the story on 1/1/20, the last review is not really updated. This is no longer a shameless review but more of a Q&A with an actual coverage of the following (along with some promo ^-^ of course) topics: update schedule, story background, writing style, historical basis, who should try reading it, old vs new version. For old readers (before 1/1/20): You can start reading from the beginning again if you want to (I added quite a few scenes that make the flow of the story better overall and some more depth to the characters). If not, the overall plot still goes along the same trajectory, so I'll make a note via chapter title when this new version picks up where the old one stopped. Who should read this story: - You're tired of cookie-cutter stories where the MC overcomes everything without repercussions - You want to see character and story development - You want to see side characters each have their plotlines and not just be there to prove how cool the MC is - You want to read an actually historically-grounded story that follows the rules of that time period - You want to see a non-love-obsessed FL and ML Why you might not want to read this story: - No face-slapping FL (she's witty but knows how to hide it) - No overly obsessive ML (he's supposedly one of the most handsome emperors in Chinese history tho) - No transmigration or rebirth (there's a lot of deaths in the story?) - ML and FL both have actual flaws (they're actual historical people, and I try to abide by their historical descriptions) Update Schedule: - Double updates until I am up to the point in the plot where the old version left off - Afterwards, I'll try to update once every week. Sorry, but I'm not the best with updating on time. I really do try, but if I forget to update sometimes, please bear with me. I'm currently a freshman in college who is trying to balance school work with lab work. Writing is something I really enjoy, but sometimes it's just not possible. Story Background: Set from the beginning of the Sui dynasty, this story continues until its fall and into the beginning of the Tang dynasty. Writing Style: I tend to be super flowery when writing, and I apologize because it can be sometimes a pain to read. I try to add a lot of background detail via imagery for those who are not as familiar with Chinese history, and it might seem very forced info-dump-like at points. Also, since I'm trying to recreate history as closely as I can, there are a lot of side characters, which can be super confusing. Historical Basis: You may think I'm giving away a lot here instead of letting readers find out for themselves. But Emperor Yang of Sui is actually super famous...well infamous. If you're Chinese, chances are that you've heard his name before. And if you have, then the next word to surface is probably tyrant. In this story, I'm not trying to wipe away all of his crimes. I repeat. I'M NOT TRYING TO JUSTIFY HIS ACTIONS. I was just really inspired by Professor Meng's series on what the Sui dynasty and its emperors were really like. If you do have some background in Chinese, Da Sui Feng Yun is a suppppper good series to listen to!
Fair warning, I read the chapters without reading the synopsis first. Everything below is purely first impression of the novel. The thing I'd like to emphasize the most is how well done this is--especially for a First Person Point of View. First person limits a few things like the thoughts of the other characters but the MC is so observant, mature and wise that I don't mind it. It's like you met a person and want to know their story. In that context, the person could only state their perspective. Anyway, I truly commend any author who could write amazingly in first person. With that out of the way, I do hope you give this book a chance. For the plot and storyline, each chapter keeps you more interested by the end. There's like one revelation/twist after another and they all come together, flowing really well. Reading the synopsis after this, I feel like it's not doing it much justice. The MC is much more interesting that it showcases. Her dedication to her goal is admirable. She doesn't want more out of life other than serve people the best she could. None of her decisions are reckless. She is such a good person that every hurdle that comes in, it just grips your heart. The pacing may seem slow... but it gives room to get to know and understand the characters--mostly the MC. This is actually very important, more so in first person. The MC is the person that readers would be with constantly throughout the story. They must meet her, understand her, relate to her... be willing to accompany her in this journey. It is incredibly done and it showcases how much the writer knows her MC. Readers are guaranteed that no loopholes or clash of personality would happen. If changes would appear, I'm confident that it would be explained and written thoroughly. For first impression reviews, I try to do 5 chapters but the build up just made me want to read more until questions are revealed. It's gonna be one hell of a ride from here. I look forward to it for when I have more free time or if suddenly one day is 30-40 hours. Haha. I did notice minor grammar mistakes. Just one, to be honest. Merely repeated. Keep up the wonderful work!
Hi guys! I'm totally not shamelessly reviewing my own story ^-^ I just wanted to say thank you for even making it this far and clicking onto the story page. This story really means a lot to me, far more than a fictional story should. I started writing on WebNovel not because of potentially earning money from it but just wanting to share it with a general audience. So please, if you can, review and vote for it so more people could see my story. It was really mean the world to me! The story is not fast-paced but instead aims to recreate the historical atmosphere with detail and precision. No character is completely good nor evil but instead has their own considerations and hidden woes. And standing from their perspective, the whole scene may change. So please, give this story a chance!!! Sincerely, Jenjibread
Seriously, the writing is fantastic. This definitely deserves a 5! ALL 5!!! I can tell that the author has read a lot in this genre. Even the way the characters speak takes you back to this era. Very nicely done, author. the choice of words is also something that blew my mind! I will definitely check back on your novel to learn from it. haha. Hope you don't mind...
I don't know from where to start praising this master piece. Firstly the cover is enough to garner the attention of readers. Secondly the synopsis is really compelling along with the dialogue deliverance. World building is fantastic and I must say writer does not lack vocabulary at any point. Plotline -it's just beyond amazing and words❤ I'll be following this closely.
I have only read 3 chapters so far, but the quality of writing and the content itself is immediately evident. I read before this translated Chinese novels of the 17-18 centuries. In particular, about foxes, Taoists, Confucian scholars, Buddhist monks. Historical information about the empires of Tang, Ming, Qing. In that purely technical stumbling over historical works on the Silk Road, China played an important role in trade. What you write is like the writing style I read. I liked him. The novel describes the life of that time, prejudice, the importance of the opinion of the crowd. The inner world of the characters, their characters, aspirations are well spelled out. For me, your novel is an example of how to write stories. Prior to this, I wrote only historical, documentary and purely technical papers. And here you have an interesting presentation of life, the world, and what the characters think. I have included your book in the library, now I will read slowly. In my non-professional opinion, there is still not enough - a description of the clothes of the era of the Sui empire and it is possible if the text contains food, it would be nice to talk about those dishes that were then. In that era, probably, fruits - vegetables and fruits were of different varieties, with a different taste, texture. Not to mention the yield, it was less, but the taste was more original. It may be less sweet, but brighter. Only this, it occurred to me. I admire your romance; it is sophisticated and unique. So far I have never met such novels on Webnovel! With appreciation
What can I say? The reader in me loves this, the history graduate in me adores this and the aspiring writer in me is nearly dead with jealousy. Absolutely love this story so far and can’t wait to read more. The attention to detail in reconstructing a bygone era is probably my absolute favourite thing about this, simply because I know how much work and research must go into every single paragraph. Truly a little gem! Also absolutely love the title haha but that would be for personal reasons. :)
I feel compelled to give this novel a 5/5 ☆. This is probably one of the best novels on wn and its only 20 chapters in like wow, I can't even describe how well written it is. The flow is nice and the poems included really bring out a theme (intended or not). The plot is also really good, the romance isn't cringy and they dont fall in love at first sight. I feel that once this novel has more chapters, I could even write an essay about the themes in this novel. It is that good (like a published book).
Wow! This is a truly beautiful and unique story. The only reason for deduction of points is that the few here and there grammatical errors. Other than that, the plotline was written out absolutely beautifully, to the point it was capable of drawing in one's fascinated attention. The writing style was the best part for me, and the plot for the story is quite unique and captivating in its own way! Keep up with the good work!
Here is my review for you ;) First of all, I'm not really a fan of this genre and therefore I can`t judge the story well, but it definitely looks interesting and profound. The characters are very individual and well described. But what really impressed me is your writing style and the realism. It's nice to read and I wish I could write like you, the envy is real -,- All in one a very nice and thoughtful story. Good luck in the future :D
I don’t care! I’m giving this 5 stars right now! I was completely surprised and overwhelmed at the quality and pacifying emotions of the writing style. I could actually see the MC’s temperament without the author even having to say it. This... this is the definition of a hidden gem. The first chapter got me hooked. Though the prologue was a little weird :p, I didnt dislike it. The story is where I actually felt alive. The uniqueness of this novel is unreal. Literally, I had given someone 1 star once and they deserved it. This story is the same. It deserves the whole 5 stars. Will continue to read more as I only finished the first chap lol. Read it! 👍👍👍
Since the story had only five chapters uploaded, I can’t fully grasp the whole plotline yet, but after reading five episodes and the excellent narration of the author. I can say this novel has a promising storyline as it seems like it will show us a tale about power, traditions, and a love story in the middle of the war against empires. It’s seldom for me to read about history, but I like this one. I will certainly wait for the updates that can’t wait to read more about how our FL life would unfold! Good luck and more power author!