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If you are messed up like me...
Then you will love this story. Though Jing is a manipulative, selfish, and violent lover, there is just something very sexy, emotional, and loving between him and Lu Cang. There will be many parts that will make you feel antsy, angry, sad, crazy, and may even make you cry, but when you get to the end it is absolutely beautiful. Bite onto your handkerchief and get ready for the ride!
Vol 1: Sadistic smut. Vol 2: Gentle loving
I didn't take HHYL seriously at first; it seemed like another PWP. It didn't hit me until after I've finished Vol 2 that there was actually a story in this. If you don't like the nature of their relationship (sadistic and manipulative from Jing's side), then you won't like the story.
The story's about how the upright and straight Lu Cang falls in love with the sadistic and selfish Jing, freedom, uncertainty, and social judgment be damned, and how, in turn, Jing genuinely comes to love Lu Cang, despite his reservations. Yes, Jing is still selfish and manipulative toward Lu Cang even at the end; but that's the point you have to get about their love: Lu Cang knows and accepts that about Jing. Both accept the other person for whom he really is. It's not the most "healthy" relationship by modern standards, but there are definitely tenderness, understanding, acceptance, and developing trust.
Kudos to the translator because the prose was great.
... Last updated on November 29th, 2016, 4:42pm
I don't understand how some people said it has amazing plot ? i've finished reading this, and the only thing i get is Jing being sadist to Lu Cang, plus trying to make Lu Cang submissive to Jing. And Jing keeps making Lu Cang broken heart. I don't even find a single thing to like from Jing's character, he's only a sadist with pretty face, while Lu Cang is just another weak protag.
Spoiler (mouse over to view)
when i thought i won't be disgusted by Jing anymore than i already do, Yongyi appears, and make Lu Cang realized that Jing only using him as a substitute for Yongyi which make Lu Cang broken beyond recovery. Although later Jing explained everything to Lu Cang why he's obsessed with Yongyi & the reason why he 'torture' Yongyi (bc Jing afraid to accept the fact that he's in love with Lu Cang which makes Jing forgot his feeling for Yongyi), but it still make me utterly disgusted & broken heart (probably im more broken heart than Lu Cang) bc Jing accused Lu Cang for killing Yongyi (actually not true), and Jing totally being crazy & unreasonable, blaming Lu Cang plus even prison him then another torturing session, even thinking that Lu Cang did it bc he was jealous over Yongyi, omg
and the end rly =_= i was hoping for Lu Cang to dump Jing, but . . . . . .
i totally prefer something with plot like Cold Sand
... Last updated on November 12th, 2016, 7:00am
I loved it. I'm one of those sadist you will ever meet and uh.. Jing's torture made me turned on (God knows how many times). I felt bad for Lu (not really, lol) but ha~ it was so awesome and all. I loved watching Lu Cang getting tortured, raped, and of course, getting beaten by Jing. Though, I expected the ending to be sad, not happy. It's still wonderful though!
I'd recommend it to anyone who love torturing, doesn't have a weak heart and is a sadist.
A story about violence
I had a hard time liking this novel for a long time. The first half of it comes across as nothing more than violence and rape to me. It wasn't sex, just violence. Take out the sexual intercourse and it would read pretty much the same. Just because Lu Cang was attracted to Jing doesn't mean Jing can do whatever he wanted to Lu Cang. The man was terrified of Jing and what he was capable of.
I'm a lover of BDSM but that way of life is based on mutual respect and trust between partners, none of which was in the first half of this story. Yes, Jing was a sadist. He got pleasure out of hurting Lu Cang. But with the way the story was written in 3rd-person subjective from Lu Cang's pov, it's obvious he wasn't consenting to Jing's sexual advances (he's not even a masochist! He never outright gets pleasure from the feeling of pain). Honestly, I can't condone stories which depict violence in such an obvious way for so many chapters and in the end leaves the reader thinking of it as sex.
I think for me, the biggest example of how there was nothing but violence in the relationship at the beginning is in the fact that the story does a 180 just over halfway through. As soon as Lu Cang decides he's willing, the sadistic play all but disappears. It's almost as if the writer couldn't write an SM couple properly - once there was love, they had more tender sex. Jing's sadistic need seemed to disappear which suited Lu Cang since he was never a masochist to begin with.
Basically, the first half of the story I found intolerable and the second half I found messy because I felt like I was reading a story about two completely new characters the way their relationship turned on its head. The rating I gave is pretty much due to the fact the story still flows fairly well and the development sans-rape/sex is decent, but be aware you have to stomach a lot of violence before getting any sort of romantic notion in the story.
... Last updated on April 6th, 2015, 10:44am
I've rated a number of series as 10/10 but after reading this novel, I feel like they weren't worth it. The main protagonists came a long way before reaching the "couple status", neither of them expected to develop such strong feelings for another male partner and that's what makes this story unique: they didn't want to admit to their mutual attraction but they still couldn't give up on that feeling. Watching their awkward relationship develop into something really steady and beautiful makes this novel special for me. I have to warn you, though. The love-making, especially in the first chapters, makes you wonder where this series is going. Some people may find that disturbing to read.
... Last updated on March 8th, 2015, 11:57am
I've read this novel in like 1-2 days. It was just too good and I really liked the characters and of course the smutty smut. This novel is very interesting and lovely. It gave me goosebumps whenever I've read it and at some scenes I just wanted to cry so bad. The ending was just perfect. Well something was still missing but I don't want to spoiler so yea. The story is great and if you don't like BDSM or too much sex in one chapter, then just don't read it. But if you want a dramatical novel with good looking chinese boys and a very good story, then just read it now.
Well I find the thought of the concubines still beeing "used" kind of disgusting. I don't like, if only one partner is faithful, that kind of agitated me. Still, that was the only thing I can remark as unsatisfying in this story. Exept my hope of Lu Cang at last having one sucsessor being unfullfilled it was an absolutely adicting novel, could't stop reading even depiving me of sleep.
... Last updated on June 20th, 2014, 4:00pm
Affects me emotionally
At the beginning, you would think this is a normal sadistic novel which may end up having the protagonist getting stockholm syndrome but NO. This novel definitely does not lead you there. Instead, it slowly reveals Jing's affection towards Lu Cang. And by slowly, I mean really slow, because Jing just does not have a good way of showing his affection towards people he cares about. However, as you read on, you would get to see the increasing love Lu Cang felt for Jing and vice versa through their actions and Jing's 'repent' for trapping Lu Cang by his side. This story goes on by developing on the challenges they face as the emperor and the 'concubine'. I would say this story is a must read for all BL lovers!
This lets out the sadistic side of me....
I admit I'm one big SADIST and liking this novel the way I do just proves that. This is not for the faint-hearted for it has a lot of sadistic tendencies. Just the fact that a very powerful, beyond gorgeous looking emperor finds it extremely enjoyable (in my observation at least) to not just sexually violate the protagonist but also do it to extremes with pain, manipulation, humiliation and of course sadism. What more could we ask for? This has a perfect combination of very great art, amazing plot and very intense story progression. Everybody says this is too much but that's the best part about it. This novel doesn't hold back on anything which makes it great. It's got none of that sissy love stuff ( like I said not for the faint-hearted ). I enjoyed this to the fullest. Definite 10 in my list.
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