Isekai (Different world) and reincarnation(or “second chance”) have always been popular tropes in shoujo manga – think From Far Away(1991), Fushigi Yugi(1992), Red River(1995) and it has, in the past few years, become a favorite with reverse-harem fans.
With the story having a singular female protagonist who dies and is transmigrated into another world, these manhwas make sure they get their own harem.
These are my top 10 romance isekai manhwas. Let’s start a countdown!
The Villainess Reverses the Hourglass
Aria’s status in society changes overnight with her mother’s marriage to Count Roscente. The count’s biological daughter Mielle, however, does not accept this and manipulates Aria till she is put to the guillotine. Right after being decapitated, Aria finds herself thrown back in time along with an hourglass, an item that will help her navigate through her tumultuous life once again.
This manhwa is genuinely a gem. The romance does not begin until we experience Aria struggle through the same life-events, succeed at some and fail at others. We see her go from being a vain lady of the Roscente house to someone who learns to appreciate the people around her, form lasting relationships and live life fully. Doubtlessly the manhwa with the best art in 2021.
Read The Villainess Reverses the Hourglass on TappyToon
Surviving as a Maid
Our protagonist was just cooking ramen when she found herself waking up from a nap, having been transmigrated into a novel, a BL nonetheless! She is now a maid in the Queen’s palace – the queen who is an insignificant side character because well, this is a BL!
About 50 chapters in and this manhwa keeps me hooked. We still have no idea about Ash’s identity and how she ended up there, but the interpersonal relationships in this story are top-notch! Ash herself does not have the memories from this body she now possesses, and is left to fend for herself as the side characters start to interact with her when she is appointed at the new-born prince’s nanny.
The artwork is pretty decent and the several MLs are increasingly mysterious, toxic, hateful and loveable all at the same time. I really commend the author’s ability to make us addicted without letting us in on anyone’s backstory.
God Bless You
Imagine being a two-time MMA champion who dies loveless and wakes up to find herself in the body of a petite little Lady Grace. With the option of attracting a unicorn man(a modest, handsome and loving gentleman) available to her now, Grace has her hopes up in this new life. That is, until she finds out that she is set to be married to Duke Aston Blade, a perverted old fart. Now she must manifest the strength from her previous life to escape this predicament!
The art style is rather comedic – which oddly matches the slapstick comedy this manhwa has to offer.
If you are looking for a sappy romance story, this might not be it – but it’s guaranteed to make you laugh.
Read God Bless You on TappyToon
Kill the Villainess
A typical villainess from a novel, Eris Mizellian has her fate written well – she is to be executed after scheming against Helena, the pure and pious FL. When a regular Korean is transmigrated into Eris’ body, there is but one objective – to go back home.
KtV is the most realistic isekai I have read so far. No resignation, no YOLO, Eris has tried to commit suicide over and over in hopes that she would be sent back to her world and to her family – one that may not have loved her as much, but one she still prefers being with.
Death is the Only Ending for this Villainess
Ever played an Otome game on the hardest difficulty where the penalty of getting literally anything wrong is death? That’s basically the entire plot of this manhwa, but boy does the author pull it off well.
Penelope Exckart is the adopted daughter of Duke Eckart, thoroughly hated by everyone and only meant as a replacement until the real daughter shows up. As the game’s story develops, Penelope must maneuver through the death flags waiting for her every time she interacts with any of the MLs – something that happens every day, 2 of those being her brothers! Within the first 50 chapters or so, the author has managed to exhibit the drastic(yet believable) developments in each character.
Our FL was preparing for the civil services exam right before she died and was reborn as a beautiful countess. She is now in a world that is no less than a game – except that she’s only a regular player, placed in position by the God of Beauty.
Her mission now is to fill this world with handsome men (Vanity thy name is God of Beauty), but there is something suspicious about these gods going about having humans to do their bidding.
The plot may seem a little superfluous but the manhwa makes up for it with really good platforming – it is full of action and strategic scenes, with a side of romance.
Who Made me a Princess
Princess Athanasia is a neglected daughter of the emperor, Claude, destined to live in misery at a run-down side palace. Athanasia will be killed by the hands of her own father, when another turns up claiming to be the royal princess. This is the plot of the romance novel where our FL finds herself.
Strangely though, Claude seems to have taken an interest in Athanasia and even moved into her castle to live together! He still seems as cold as ever, though he seems to bear Athy’s presence now. With a wizard of uncertain origins by her side, Athy’s goal is to live peacefully with her new sister – who might not be a sister at all!
Void of any romance, this manhwa has a really good flow, amazing art and superb implementation of the smallest plot cues.
Read Who Made Me A Princess on TappyToon
Beware of the Villainess!
The FL enters the body of a duke’s daughter, Melissa Podebrat. Melissa is the villainess in a romance novel, who is meant to torture the protagonist and be killed for it – at least that is how the story was supposed to unfold. This Melissa has no intention of chasing after any MLs – she just wants to live like a jobless rich person but the gods who made this world will not let her be! She must fight her “destiny” before she can enjoy that life of luxury.
The manhwa has a bit of romance thrown around in every other chapter, but the spellbinding artwork makes it worth reading. Werewolves, snipers, princes? This one has it all – really hot ones, too.
Seduce the Villain’s Father
While I am not too happy with the action scenes in this one, there’s hardly a lot to expect out of an Isekai.
FL opens her eyes after a bus accident and finds herself in her favorite romance novel – she possesses the body of Princess Yerenica, 20 years before the actual plot is supposed to begin. A plot, which will break her family apart as her sister gets abducted by the emperor of the neighbouring kingdom. How will she solve this situation? Simple – get kidnapped instead of the sister and make the emperor of Belgoat fall for her!
Nonsensical as it sounds, this manhwa does a good job of displaying how human emotions do not change easily – a trope that is often overused. We see Yerenica and the emperor develop feelings gradually(if any) but before any romance can happen, Yerenica must live. Her body is ridiculously weak to magic and Belgoat is full of it.
With a decent art style and a determined princess, this makes for a good read.
The Villainess Lives Again
Artezia has been used as a pawn and thrown away by her own mother and brother. She put her brother on the throne and he put her to the guillotine, for she is too clever to be left alive.
With her own blood and tears, she sacrifices her own body to cast ancient magic and turn back time. This time, the 18 year old Tia knows the assignment and refuses to fail, but things do not seem to be going her way.
With a rather simple yet beautiful drawing-style, the author has managed to make quite an impression. As someone who never received love before, Tia is awkward when she does receive affection. When faced with adversity, she summons her prior life’s experience to wade through this tedious life again.
Read the Villainess Live Again on TappyToon
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