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A silly cultivation novel about an airheaded master putting his foot in his mouth and his poor, clever disciple ducking the fall.
In the midst of faking his death, Xiao Hui finds himself trucked and summarily reincarnated into a cultivation world. With great hopes for what is to come, he gets himself taken in by a sect and chosen by a powerful master, but his master seems to have a hole in his brain! What's a poor disciple to do?
What Hui does best, of course!
A xianxia comedy in the vein of A Will Eternal and Spirit Blade Mountain!
-Neither grimdark nor fluffy, but interwoven with both silly and intense moments
-Not your typical cultivation protagonist
[participant in the Royal Road Writathon challenge]
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This is honestly a much more straight cultivation story than most works on RR. It's looking like the main thing that sets it apart will be the unique personality and life experience of the main character. Not a ton to go on yet, but this could be a good one to keep your eye on.
I tried really hard to like this story, but in the end the direction the author has taken it is not for me.
First the good stuff. Good grammar, decently well developed characters, and some humor. There's even a plot, and not a terrible one underneath everything else.
Now for the bad. The MC is the very worst combination of willfully stupid and invulnerable plot armor that I've seen in a while.
The Sect he belongs to is divided up into 'Peaks' with each Peak being run by a separate master. He has trouble with one specific Peak master for a lot of reasons I won't go into to avoid spoilers, but he just keeps going to that Peak, over and over and over again, causing trouble and pissing off the master there.
Not for life and death reasons, either. He's constantly angering a demi-god because he wants treats! Because he's too much of a wimp to say not to a girl. All kinds of other assinine reasons, as well...
And each time he gets into trouble, magically his Deus Ex Machina bulletproof plot armor kicks in, and not only does he not get hurt or in trouble, but he actually gets REWARDED for his asshattery!
So, yeah. Not good, but not bad either. I loathe stories where the MC has no consequences for their bad or stupid actions, so even though I really wanted to like this, I refuse to read anymore.
I suggest no one else does, either.
Fairly average start followed up by some pretty interesting developments. Who would have thought that having a genius for a master would be more of a curse than a blessing? The pure fact that MC has to struggle to get literally anything done (like not starving to death) in a sect makes reading this story quite rewarding.
What will go wrong this time? How will MC solve this problem?
Not to mention that MC's best way of cultivating is to literally die. With idea like this I can't help but feel restless while waiting for new chapters.
I'll be honest, I readily expected this to land in the mediocre valley that seems to call to the cultivation genre. Instead, this shot right up to float in the heady territory of Arrogant Young Master or Mediocre Supreme Cultivator. It's not as aggressively comedic as those, but definitely earns the tag with a streetwise protagonist that's just trying to get by.
Style: Smooth and solid. The pacing is fairly quick, with occasional moments to breathe and consider what's going. No confusing sentence structure that I saw.
Grammar: Great. I wasn't poring over every word, but no errors stood out to me.
Story: Classic xianxia setting, with a few unique twists. The world is fairly focused within the sect so far, but it's been an enjoyable view. Weird alchemists, violently competitive cultivators, and our streetwise survivor tucked right onto the middle of everything. The plot is fairly low stakes, for all it risks the death of the protagonist, but it makes for a solid drive to keep him moving forward. Additionally, it has yet to make the mistake of prioritizing comedy over realism. The humor comes out of the protagonist's interactions with the world, not by bending the reality of the story to produce funny moments.
Characters: Pretty solid. The side characters trend towards exaggerated personalities, the sweet chef, the (un)rightous rival, the slightly off alchemist. That said, it never approaches caricature and it's early enough that there hasn't been much opportunity to see more depth from the assorted individuals. Scenes have indicated that the thoughtless master is at least more than his initial shallow portrayal, so I don't have much concern that the side characters will ever feel empty. The MC himself tips back and forth between tragic and humerous, with fun little survival tips that allude to a thoroughly depressing origin. Despite that, there's no wallowing and the tone of his character is pretty upbeat, if generally approaching his problems with a "can hustle" attitude. Regardless, the author nails the opportunistic but not antagonistic attitude that makes or breaks streetwise characters. It's solid.
Overall, this makes for an entertaining xianxia that still has the bones of a solid cultivation story underneath. Enough so that even if the author decided to play things entirely straight, I'd probably still read it. It does take a few chapters to get rolling, but I'd recommend giving it until chapter 10 to see if it appeals.
A hapless cultivator tries not to die in the situations the characters around him keep tossing him into. I love the MC's way of dealing with things, I love the character interactions, I love the humor. It's a fun read, I highly recommend it to people who don't mind if their xianxia isn't srs bsns.
There seems to be a harsh divide in the reviews between people who enjoy the story, and hate it. I believe the people who dislike it don't understand what the story is. The vibe I'm getting is a comedy/light hearted story about a bumbling disciple making his way through Xianxia-land. Obviously, this isn't like I Shall Seal the Heavens or other serious Xianxia novels, it's essentially an entirely different genre. So when you read this novel, change your expectations from a hard-core to-the-death gore-fest Xianxia novel to a fun and light comedy. The story is quite enjoyable and fun, and I recommend reading it.
The premise of the story is interesting and could even be considered as a breath of fresh air for its genre. But I would have to strongly disagree with some of the reviews here, that this is how a real cultivation story should go.
The first few chapters were well written, and you could see that the author is building up the protag's character as someone who's used to dealing with unfavorable situations from his past life. But contrary to the built up expectations from the previous chapters, you'll find out that the MC is only really good at one thing: Playing dead.
Now, you can hardly fault the MC for this because he obviously doesn't have prior knowledge when it comes to fighting, and also mainly because his master had been the source of his troubles, both directly and indirectly.
In any case, with all these put into consideration, you'll expect him to pull through using his wits and ingenuity. But sadly no.
After the first real fight, the manner at which the protag acted has become annoying to say the least. And with him, the world has also become silly to match him with his antics.
The poor attempt at comedy has made this unbearable to read futher, as it reminds you the wasted potential of what this story could have been if some more clever thought has been put into writing it.
If you have read A Will Eternal and is looking for a protagonist that is similar to Bai Xiaochun, but is more annoying and incompetent. This should do you good.
For someone who has already read a bunch of cultivation novels with the same formula as one another, I think it's fair to say "Master, this poor disciple died again today" does an incredible job at being different and standing out from the others stories.
Grammar: There's not much to say about this further than its well-written structures and neat grammar. I can't remember seeing any error or some phrase that I couldn't comprehend it reading just one time.
Style and Character: Reading others' reviews for a long time now, I must attach these two scores. All the characters that were presented until now are extremely funny and unique, making their scenes always quite memorable and hilarious to wait and see it play along. However, there are a lot of complaints about the main character, Hui, and that's fundamentally intertwined with the own style of this novel. Death is quite the big topic here, sometimes it's approached in a silly way and other times in a serious way, but it's always there, making, most of the time, Hui stronger. For me, that's the biggest selling point of this novel, I think it is not only genius but well-made how everything is built around death, even his cultivation. Though, that's where I think lays the problem for some people. Do not wait to see a heroic and prideful MC who steamrolls his every single problem. Hui does get stronger, but it's not fast, he beats his problems mostly with the help of others and his wits, and at the same time, his problems start with the help of others and his wits. I've seen people saying that Hui is weak and pathetic, solving his problems in ridiculous ways and mostly without his merit, but it's quite early in the story... I feel these early scenes are there to not only make one laugh but to gradually develop the MC, though who knows.
Story: I do not have much to say here, things are too early for making a good analysis on this topic. Much was subtly shown, but not much was developed yet, what I can say is that my interest was picked a long time ago.
Overall: A fresh take on an overly used genre with a funny undernote and with its serious moments. Unique characters and interesting topics, cultivation arts, and story. Try it yourself and see if what I've said makes sense or not
Interesting characters that (mostly) make rational choices.
Some of the story decisions are a little frustrating.
There is a large time-skip early in the story, the result of which is nearly the same situation as before, except the MC is older and more adapted to life there. But, he didn't make any friends in all that time? Perhaps he did, but there's no hint of that in this story. He's still alone, with no support network. It's a little jarring.
There are several problems in the MC's life that could have been solved early with clear communication or decisive action. But it's entertaining to see the MC struggle and barely survive some situations, rather than a Gary Stu that stomps all over his enemies.
It's still early days though. I binged the 40 existing chapters almost in a single sitting, so it was compelling enough to keep me enthralled at least that long. I hope that momentum can be maintained.
Grammar is nearly pristine. There are a few parts where I couldn't tell if it was a mistake or a stylistic choice, and only one definite error. Mistakes pointed out in the comments appear to get fixed (which doesn't always happen with some RR authors).
I'm adding this one to my Follow list.
Very light-hearted and funny. Skips past any in-depth explanation of cultivation, so it might not be very friendly to readers new to the genre, but I have a feeling the exact mechanics of the power system won't be a big focus.
The Grammar and spelling are pretty good. The writing style is a bit more casual than I tend to prefer, but it fits the tone of the story and the main character's internal voice is very consistant.