A laugh-out-loud, slice-of-life martial-arts fantasy about… farming????
Jin Rou wanted to be a cultivator. A man powerful enough to defy the heavens. A master of martial arts. A lord of spiritual power. Unfortunately for him, he died, and now I’m stuck in his body.
Arrogant Masters? Heavenly Tribulations? All that violence and bloodshed? Yeah, no thanks. I’m getting out of here.
Farm life sounds pretty great. Tilling a field by hand is fun when you’ve got the strength of ten men—though maybe I shouldn’t have fed those Spirit Herbs to my pet rooster. I’m not used to seeing a chicken move with such grace… but Qi makes everything kind of wonky, so it’s probably fine.
Instead of a lifetime of battle, my biggest concerns are building a house, the size of my harvest, and the way the girl from the nearby village glares at me when I tease her.
A slow, simple, fulfilling life in a place where nothing exciting or out of the ordinary ever happens… right?
The first volume of the blockbuster progression-fantasy series—with more than 16 million views on Royal Road—now available on Kindle, Kindle Unlimited, and Audible!
I heard you like cultivation. So we took the cultivation out of this cultivation book and made it about cultivation instead. But don’t worry, the rooster is still all about cultivation.
As a connoisseur of fantasy farming, I find Beware of Chicken to be an extremely enjoyable book. Jin has super strength from his past as a cultivator (those martial arts dudes who meditate on mountains and want to conquer the heavens) so he can speed run a lot of the labor. He has farming knowledge from modern day Earth, both first-hand and from manga. He channels Qi into his farming, not to accelerate growth but to increase quality. Jin also befriends people in the nearby village and has a lovely romance with a village girl.
Meanwhile his rooster is very serious about his martial arts training, learning from his great master, and protecting the farm. The humans are in a slice of life romantic comedy and the animals are living an action movie. The rooster is the first of Jin’s animals to gain intelligence but the menagerie grows over time.
Jin’s story is told first person but we experience other characters’ perspectives from third person as well. It’s usually clear whose perspective within a sentence or two but occasionally it gets confusing.
The massive cast of characters is where I struggle. The village chief and his son are both named Xian. The two main village girls are Meiling, called Meimei, and Meihua. Siblings Gou Ren and Yun Ren I can’t keep straight even on a second read through. And then there are the animals. Jin’s animals have English names but locals pronounce them differently. So the rooster is Big D in Jin’s sections but Bi De in anyone else’s.
On the flip side, the massive cast means I end up with a dozen favorite characters. Other than the brothers mentioned before, every character is distinct. I adore every one of the animals. The humans are all interesting and even minor characters have full lives and backstories. Some villainous characters are basic but the ones with lasting impact are as detestable as you’d hope.
Content notes: The premise of a farmer with fighting animals sounds adorable but this isn’t for kids. Jin swears a lot, particularly in the first chapter. Some fight scenes get gory. None of the intelligent animals are killed for food but some normal chickens are and seeing that from the rooster’s perspective is intense.