《一不小心和醋精结婚了》 by 一枚纽扣 – An approachable modern webnovel for Chinese learners

First Released2020
Length83 chapters + 8 extras
Total Characters~303,000
Unique Characters~2,000
GenreDanmei, Romance, Modern, Slice of Life

Longer webnovels are not the type of approachable content that I recommend to an intermediate Chinese learner because the length is often overwhelming, and the feeling of an endless journey could result in demotivation.

However, 《一不小心和醋精结婚了》is a longer webnovel that I would recommend for an intermediate learner and for many good reasons.

Read on to find out why.

Disclaimer: I read the original Chinese webnovel in Chinese. I can not comment on any of the translations or any other edition. If you are reading the physical Chinese release or a translation, your experience may differ from mine.


One month following a drunken, hazy one-night encounter that Chuyi barely remembers, his partner from that night unexpectedly turns up at his workplace, proposing a marriage. Surprisingly, Chuyi accepts and thus begins a heartwarming tale of love after marriage.

Content Warning:

The Reading Experience

The primary setting of 《一不小心和醋精结婚了》is the residences, the surrounding areas and the workplace of the two main characters. There’s no real indication of which city it’s based on, but it can be assumed it’s a typical modern city in China around the year 2020.

While both main characters own their own companies and businesses, this side of their lives is lightly brushed over throughout the story, which is perfect for readers who prefer not to delve too heavily into the intricacies of business or workplace dynamics.

The primary plot is the happy development of their relationship — from complete strangers to romantic lovers- with the majority of the narration being slice-of-life. It does not divert much from their day-to-day lives.

In fact, there is very little drama. It’s essentially 83 chapters of them getting to know each other, going on dates, living together, and growing their relationship.

There are a few side characters, but apart from the secretary of one of the main characters, the rest are only lightly mentioned.

It’s a very easy-to-follow and straightforward story with a simple plot, not much happening, and few characters.

Narration and Writing Style

The writing style in 《一不小心和醋精结婚了》is very casual, with very short and straightforward sentences that have little to no description.

The original webnovel features an extremely casual, almost chat message-like formatting style. Each sentence is a new line with several sentences grouped together. Some sentences are as short as 3-4 characters! Some Chinese learners have expressed that sections of this webnovel felt like reading a set of short text messages.

However, the formatting was changed for the published edition, where the individual lines are grouped into a paragraph, much like the style found in a traditional book.

Some may even say this is amateur writing, but in my opinion, I feel it’s actually quite clever. For a story to be enjoyable and fun to read, a masterpiece of cleverly written sentences that are full of intricate descriptions isn’t necessary.

Besides that, the formatting is much easier on the eye than large paragraphs, making skimming possible for those who aren’t used to skimming Chinese text.

Difficulty for a Chinese learner

As mentioned previously, the writing style is very simplistic, with short sentences and little or no descriptions, making《一不小心和醋精结婚了》is a very approachable modern, contemporary, romance webnovel for intermediate Chinese learners.

As with many new materials, the beginning will be more challenging. However, many of the words are repeated throughout.

Although this webnovel has a total of ~300k characters, it only contains 2,000 unique characters. Let’s compare this to《活着》, a Chinese book that’s often recommended for beginners. 《活着》is around ~80k characters in length and encompasses 2,000 unique characters. Due to the shorter length, there’s not much opportunity for words and characters to be repeated that often.

《一不小心和醋精结婚了》is four times the length of《活着》, with the same number of unique characters; you can already assume that many characters and words will be repeated.

This webnovel is manageable as a first Chinese novel, but if you feel that the longer chapters and length of the webnovel are overwhelming then try some short content before attempting this one.

The formatting style used in this webnovel is ideal if you are new to reading in Chinese. Unlike in more traditional literature, where sentences are grouped into long paragraphs, the one sentence per line format in this webnovel is more accessible and beginner-friendly.

Bear in mind that the formatting was changed in the physical published edition to reflect a more traditional style.

Final Thoughts

Slice-of-life stories with little plot were never something I considered reading until I started learning Mandarin Chinese.

As a native English speaker, I can read most English novels with ease. I previously found myself enjoying long fantasy novels with intricate world-building, exciting plots, and many characters. I rarely touched modern romance novels.

Learning Chinese has opened many doors to a whole new world; not being as competent in Mandarin Chinese as I am in English, I found myself exploring new genres and options. Modern slice of life is one of those new doors that I’ve opened and stepped through during this journey.

Although I have read a few modern slices of life web novels, 《一不小心和醋精结婚了》is the one that I enjoyed the most.

To be honest, it really surprised me! Nothing really happens in this webnovel, yet I found myself turning to this and having a blast devouring a few chapters every evening after work. It almost felt like therapy after a long stressful workday. Reading about the two characters enjoying their life and each other’s company was very satisfying.

Having said that, 《一不小心和醋精结婚了》 isn’t for everyone. The first 23 chapters are completely free to read on 晋江文学城, and being such an approachable learning content for Chinese learners, I recommend giving this a go and deciding for yourself if it’s a webnovel for you.

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