Review: The Blind Concubine

Alright, “The Blind Concubine” is a novel most people probably won’t like but I have to admit that it is one of my favorite Chinese bl novels just because it is so entirely different and extremely emotional. I definitely didn’t regret reading this!

What is “The Blind Concubine” about?

One day the emperor walks past the Cold Palace and sees a beautiful man. He is instantly intrigued and tries to get closer to him. Since the man is blind he pretends to be someone else but that backfires when he finds out that this so-called Blind Concubine has something against the current Emperor, so, in other words against him.


My opinion

The novel has around 30 chapters but those are packed with emotions. It really was a roller-coaster reading this and I find myself thinking back to the novel even though it’s been a long time since I read it.

The Blind Concubine is the protagonist of the novel and most of it is written from his perspective. This was quite interesting since you don’t have a blind main character that often. I was really surprised how well everything worked out without being able to describe what he actually sees. Well, there are other characters that provide some visionary clues but I found it nice that not everything relied on that.

The emperor, too, is a character I liked reading about. He definitely had his charm and wasn’t the typical “I’m the emperor so do what I say!”-type. That was a nice change that I really welcomed.

Their story was really cute even though – this might be a bit spoiler-ish so you might want to ignore the rest of this paragraph – even though the ending wasn’t all that happy. It was a realistic ending, though, and one that fit the story perfectly, IMO. It totally broke my heart but I still liked it and maybe this ending is even the reason why I love this novel so much.


Overall …

“The Blind Concubine” is a novel I liked very, very much and that I still often think about. In fact, it’s one of my highlights of historical Chinese bl-novels.
This has a lot to do with the really likable characters and the plot that was a lot different from what I’ve seen in lots of other bl novels. So, I would highly recommend giving this novel a chance and forming your own opinion. 😉

You can find the translations for the first 8 chapters on and the translation for the remaining chapters on livejournal.

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