Title: Mao Pai Xin Nian [冒牌新娘]
Author: Zi Yue 紫月
Genre: Gender Bender, Ancient China
Ok so first review release is a personal favorite of mine "Mao Pai Xin Nian" 冒牌新娘 by Zi Yue 紫月. It's a very cute and sweet story.
The story is about a young man Shi Jie Yi in ancient China. He is the servant of the daughter Ling Shuang whose father is a rich merchant. Ling Shuang's father arranged a marriage for her to his friend's son who happens to be a rancher. Ling Shuang is a spoiled child who feels that a rancher is not good enough for her and she has her own lover. So she convinces Shi Jie Yi to take her place as the bride, even though he is a man. Shi Jie Yi, being the kind and innocent person he is, agrees because he feels indebted to to Ling Shuang's family. On the other hand, Yun Tian Yang heard from his father that he has an arranged marriage with a rich merchant's daughter and is very adverse to it. Yun Tian Yang has a strong opinion about rich spoil girls and refuse to cooperate. Yun Tian Yang's family is very wealthy even though they are ranchers, they do manual labor, thus he cannot accept a girl who is weak and spoiled as his wife. However he is unable to go against his father's wishes. Thus his plan is to first meet with the bride before she makes it to his house and take her to a makeshift broken home and pretend to be poor so that the girl will reject the marriage instead. Thus Shi Jie Yi meets Yun Tian Yang as "Ling Shuang". Yun Tian Yang tries very hard to imply that he is poor and cannot afford many luxuries to for Shi Jie Yi such as a luxurious house, servants, and that he will have to work his keep. Shi Jie Yi, being a servant at Ling's home is very used to manual labor and poverty so that does not stop him. He really wants to have his own family, being an orphan that he is from young age, so he works hard with Yun Tian Yang. Yun Tian Yang told him that he has his own lover and Shi Jie Yi is only his wife in title, to Shi Jie Yi's great pleasure, since Tian Yang will not be 'touching' him, he can keep this secret for life. As they work together Tian Yang starts changing his attitude when he sees how hard Jie Yi works, and get surprised by his optimistic, positive attitude and of course how pretty he is. Slowly he starts to fall in love with Jie Yi.
I'll stop here for those who are interested and will want to read the rest for themselves... I recommend this very much and I have definitely reread it more than once!
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Plot wise it was quite a classic gender bender. But it was very well written, Shi Jie Yi is a very kind and gentle person. And it is pretty funny at all the comments that Tian Yang makes to try to convince Jie Yi to leave. Tian Yang is very a very caring person and only had a prejudice to rich girls because of a past experience. It was quite understandable especially that he is able to overcome and love Jie Yi with all his heart. I think the author was able to deliver the characterizations very well. I feel that Zi Yue is a very good author, unfortunately not much people know of her. I recommend this very much and hope that others will enjoy this story too.