Book Review: Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan

Okay, so I was a bit late to this bandwagon… I was looking through my book collection and kindle library trying to decide what to read next, and nothing was appealing to me so I thought that maybe that meant that it was time to try something completely different to my usual tastes.

Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan sounded like a pretty fun ride. It primarily followed Rachel and Nick who have been in a relationship for a couple of years, when Nick invites Rachel to come to Singapore with him for the summer and meet his family. Nick’s family are ridiculously wealthy (some may say “crazy rich”) Nick hasn’t told Rachel anything about them so Rachel is thrown in to a completely different world to the one she lives in in New York.

I was enjoying this book for the most part nearly all the way through. There were some quite funny moments and Kevin Kwan’s descriptions of the absolute decadence that the characters live in was immersive. I also really liked the inclusion of all the footnotes that taught me a lot about Asian and Singaporean culture and also meant that the author was able to include Asian languages such as Cantonese and Mandarin.

There were one or two things that were meaning that I wasn’t finding it a perfect read though. Firstly, I just couldn’t understand why Nick wouldn’t have told Rachel about his family. Not just about how rich they are but really anything about them. If I were Rachel I would be feeling highly suspicious of this man who after 2 years has hardly mentioned his family.

Secondly, I found Nick and Rachel’s storyline to be pretty boring and predictable and I was more interested in other characters like Astrid or even Eddie – Eddie is more of a like to dislike character.

And then I got to the end and it just sort of… ended. I actually said “oh” out loud because I thought there would have been more. Which is odd in a 400 page book where not a lot actually happened. So where I was considering whether this was a 3.5 or 4 star book, it suddenly landed itself at a flat 3.

I’ve not watched the film adaptation of Crazy Rich Asians, but I’m interested in what changes they may have made – if at all. Because although I found the book to be entertaining and slightly amusing in places, the film seemed to be advertised as a full on comedy.

Has anybody continued in the Crazy Rich Asians trilogy? Would you say it would be worth it for me to continue? Let me know!

Hannah x

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