Inside a Chinese Romance Novel 爱情小说

Hey guys!

Recently I picked up a Chinese novel from the library. Though I usually read loads of books in English, I try to read some Chinese books too.

I'm glad I did!

This time I found this romance novel called "和你在一起才是全世界“ by 大宁.

It has some really cute cat illustrations too.

What really got me hooked and interested is how the author manages to capture Chinese, or Asian romance. She really got the small scenes and details right.

Let me explain with some examples.

     1. Girl and Boy goes to restaurant to eat dinner. Girl picks up bamboo chopsticks and begins to pull them apart. Boy intervenes and does it for her instead, scraping the sides of the bamboo chopsticks with each other. When questioned, Boy says that sometimes the bamboo chopsticks have little wooden splinters that may pierce her hand. Awww.

     2. It is raining. Boy and Girl only has an umbrella. They share it, and only after they get home, does the Girl realise that the Boy is drenched on one side of his body, with his hair dripping wet. Classic case of giving the other person more umbrella cover!

There are also scenes about hotpot, couple tees, simple Valentines' and birthday celebrations, cooking, studying together, and basically hanging out.

I keep waiting for the guy to peel prawns for the girl, but it didn't happen. Oh well.

Having read so many Western novels, it came as quite a shock to me to find such small but cute scenes in a book. It really boils down to the small actions people do each day.

You never really know what you've been missing. I can't imagine any Western author writing about these things! There is a cultural gap after all, I guess!

In Asian families we rarely say 'I Love You'. Instead, love is shown more by acts of service, a type of love language. In this book the author notes that little things the Boy does, even if he rarely expresses his love in words.

Ok, but some passages are just for the lulz. 

     Girl: 嫁给你不如嫁给一头猪。
     Boy: 那是不可能的。
     Girl: 为什么?
     Boy: 因为近亲是能结婚的。
     Girl: . . . 

(English Translation)
     Girl: Marrying you is like getting married to a pig.
     Boy: That's impossible.
     Girl: Why?
     Boy: Because close relatives cannot get married.
     Girl: ......


Or this one:

     Girl: 老公,这世界你对哪个女人最好啊?
     Boy: 肯定是我家小宝啊!
     Boy: 还有你啊!
     Girl: 你回答得不够真诚啊,你对欣宝是那种任劳任怨的,没有脾气的,而且每天都抱她...
     Boy: 因为我抱得动她啊。
     Girl: ......

(English Translation)

     (after having a daughter together)
     Girl: Hubby, which woman do you treat the best?
     Boy: Of course it's our baby!
     Boy: And of course, you!
     Girl: You're not sincere at all.  You are always so good tempered towards her, and even carry and                    hug her every day.
     Boy: That's because I can carry her.


Warning: If you want to read this book, beware that every other paragraph is full of CHEESE. By cheese I mean sappy, cheesy things. There is also no plot whatsoever, just a recount of days that the couple spends together, which I think are real? Well, it was fun for me anyway!

Till next time,