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I've got mixed feelings about this one.
I liked the art, however I found it really hard to tell the characters apart in some scenes, the maids and the grandma looks the same, and although I understand that the hairdo was just like that in historical times, the author could have put more detail into it to make them look more different. One of the new characters, this lord also looked similar to the king when she was young. The time skip and new characters also seem abrupt.
The concept of the story is exciting, because there is a female pretending to be a male King while being stuck in between politics and love, but the scenes in some places are seriously cliché and very similar to what you'd expect from a Korean historical drama. It was still entertaining enough to be read, just not very good quality scenes I guess.
The POV also messes with me, they kind of change here and there and the King does things that show her intelligence, yet beforehand the POV doesn't really show her preparing and thinking about it, so it isn't as impressive. Bad character development?
Another thing I found confusing is the sudden change in focus, from love, to family, to cases, to love again , to politics...etc. Maybe to keep the plot interesting, but it kinda disrupted the reading flow to me.
Summary: It entertained me enough to read to the end, but I wouldn't say it was amazing or a masterpiece.
A Spotlight Gender Bender
This has to be one of my all-time favorite manhwa's. Tragically beautiful and compelling. The artwork is stunning. The story is infused with a melancholic tone and even though we know what the outcome of this story is it leaves you hanging on your seat waiting for what happens next. If you're a manhwa fan you have to give this a read at some stage.
... Last updated on June 18th, 2014, 5:29am
I stayed up till 6am reading Yeonmo. There’s nothing conceptually new, but the execution was absolutely breathtaking. There’s a unique and desperate mood laced with melancholy throughout. The opening reveals the ending so what makes Yeonmo addictive is not the plot, but the emotion and the otp’s love. Yeonmo feels dreamy, like an extended flashback.The viewer's attention is often driven to focus on one little detail, then the author would zoom out to reveal the whole picture. Sometimes what happened are not shown in detail but are revealed later, conveying a hazy and dreamlike quality. The otp’s chemistry is out of this world. Their circumstances make their love noble and so taboo. I gotta say…this is the first manga/manhwa in a long time that can make my heart flutter. Not to mention the heroine is one of the best written ones that I’ve come across. I cant wait for the next chapters.
... Last updated on January 28th, 2016, 7:37pm
Maybe it's cliche with gender bender but there is a good BELIEVABLE reason behind it.
Usually I thought, it's so stupid: why would one hide his/her identity for some stupid reasons? Just admit it and be done with it. It's always... "I can't tell because he will hate me for lying to him because I'm actually a girl."
But in here, it's different. There is a significant reason why both shouldn't reveal their identities before. For the heroine, she was forced or she would be sentenced to death. There was no other options for her. And for him, he had his own reasons.
Both characters cannot reveal their identities because there's a reason behind it. I like how the author doesn't go around prolonging unnecessary misunderstanding because of their past secret identities. Instead, they sort of know, preventing the cliche misunderstanding: I-hate-you-because-you-lie-to-me kind of thing or the "oh-no-she's-actually-a-girl-so-what-should-I-do" kind of situation. That was done in soooo many gender bender movies, manga/manhwa/manhua, book, etc. So thank God, this one doesn't dwell that long in that soap opera situation.
I love the main characters. He was devoted to her before he knew she was actually well... a girl. His affection was purely because he felt they were similar and that she was alone in the palace. It started with friendship rather than a quick romance. He actually respects her (yes, that is important and sadly missing from many shoujo works). He is sweet to her. Sometimes can be pushy but never turning into a rapist mode. She was not the weak oh-save-me type of woman. She's strong and has a dignity fits for a king (which I majorly adore!!). She maybe a b-tch sometimes but it is understandable because she needed to toughen herself up to be a king. She's smart and although her decision/action can be controversial, she thought about it first rather than some ditzy dumb bimbo action.
Putting this in a historical context and I'm in love. He's a bishie and she's a smart bishoujo. I'm adoring this so much!!
Spoiler (mouse over to view)
I'm just hoping that some of the characters won't betray one another just because of being blinded by love. Please.... It's so cliche.
This is what I've been waiting for. To be honest, I read Model but was confused and didn't bother to try to read this until one night when I was looking for light reading before bed. Wrong! I was hooked and couldn't sleep until I finished them all. Too bad, I still want more. But the good thing, I have plenty to read. It'll kill me if there's only like 5 releases.
... Last updated on February 18th, 2013, 8:50am
My biggest complaint: everyone has the SAME face! It drives me crazy! The characters don't ever seem to change their expression, either. The character developement is pretty weak and almost non-existent (apart from the female lead, for the most part). Other than that, the plot (a young girl crossdressing & posing as the king, but falling in love with one of her guards) is pretty good. I feel like it could have been much better than it is. It updates frequently, and doesn't throw in un-needed side stories &/or a boat-ful of new characters every chapter. Therefore, I keep on reading.
... Last updated on February 9th, 2013, 3:24pm
Can be better
The biggest problem I have with manhwa in general is that they rarely have any facial expressions. This one is no exception. That aside, the plot itself is pretty interesting because the reason for the gender bender in a historical setting is for once not because of an impulsive girl who decides to be ultra feminist (I'm not against the feminist thing, but the girls who do that tend to be portrayed as impulsive and not particularly clever) and dress as a man. No, here there is a pretty good reason for her to keep her identity hidden.
The characters are pretty likeable and I like how the emperor is very politically orientated and has real goals. Also the hero is...ahhhh too hot for words. He doesn't cross the line of being too dominating and he knows his place and actually respects her. For once, a man who knows how to be a real man. Thank the lords.
Update: I finished the series. I'm not happy at how the political situation turned out.
Spoiler (mouse over to view)
She never gets to sort out her father's murder. For someone who started off as pretty focused on getting revenge and dealing with corruption, she forgets all about that once she realises she's in love. WHY. Sure she angsts over it a bit, but ultimately it's 'oh no i need to protect him and my position and need to stay low' and then that turned to 'i just want to be a woman, i don't want to care about politics anymore' WHY I wish we have more manipulative goal driven heroines who actually achieve huge changes with being a bit more ruthless. Come on, why can't there be more Integra Hellsings?
... Last updated on November 17th, 2015, 2:56pm
Gorgeous and beautifully melancholic
What to say? Let's start with I'm a sucker for historical setting especially when it involves the king and palace life along with political struggle. Then it just has to pierce through me another direct hit by the king being a female king along with the breathtaking magnificent art. Perhaps in some cases too beautiful looking characters are out of place, but this element fits the picture perfectly here. I am not sure if it will be a tragedy or not, since the story is told with a melancholic tone. However coming along with each sombre moment is a heart-warming dreamy wave that fills your mind, and I like that feeling.
I have tried to read the author's other works and find them rather out of my taste, somehow the plot and the characters are plain blank to me, but this one captures my attention right from the start. Perhaps my rating is too high, but I want to raise the average rating a bit, so that this work gets the appreciation it deserves.
The story is great. Despite the story seem to be dangerous where a women dress up as her dead twin brother and be a king, which as result if someone know she is a women, the result will be death, I still hope that this is not a tragedy story.
Truthfully, I've never read a Lee So-Young manhwa before. I've heard of them and was meant to read them but somehow, the art didn't attract me at the time.
But I decided to give Love a chance (lol).
It was slightly confusing at the beginning, mainly because I did not read it properly. So far I do enjoy it. Yes, it's the typical gender-bender plot but the way the author handles it is quite interesting and refreshing. Actually, on second thoughts, the gender-bender ploy is not so typical. Most gender-benders are the basic 'girl goes into a boys school dressed up as a boy' but this once has quite an interesting backstory behind it. There's logic and substance and therefore believability in it.
The main character is quite likeable and the plot is beginning to thicken, so it'll be interesting to see what comes ahead.
... Last updated on November 19th, 2011, 6:56am
I've read til chapter 3 only but it's so promising! There have been many cross-dressing manga/manhwas out there but this is different! This is definitely a must-read!
However, it can get confusing because some of the characters have the same faces!