I love to read and can get very attached to my opinions, but recently I've been learning not to completely lose my head when people disagree with me, so feel safe to argue with me whenever you wish ;)
Well, the title says everything. Can't really blame Luo Guanzhong, as he's only being faithful to history, and this book does not have a habit of dwelling on things, so I expect some drama and intrigue to fill in the vacuum pretty soon.
I know it's only historical coincidence, but I find it so strangely fitting that Guan Yu and Cao Cao die in the same year. Their brief period of unsure friendship fifty chapters earlier--despite being on opposite sides of a war at the time, mind you--still sticks out in my memory. One heart-wrenching moment is when Sun Quan ships Guan Yu's head to Cao Cao in a box, who opens it and asks sarcastically, "You have been well, I trust, General, since we parted?" Two things catch my attention in this line. First, as Mao points out, it's the exact same words Cao Cao spoke to Guan Yu after his loss at Red Cliffs when he was begging for his life. Second, even if psychological motives are not emphasized in this story, it still comes off so much to me as if Cao Cao's only gloating to cover up his sadness that he was never able to win Guan Yu's loyalty--an emotional thread left tragically unfinished, and a reminder that perhaps these relationships would have been possible had the entire political circumstances of China been different.