What I'm Reading: Get Even by Gretchen McNeil

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan

Most of the books I read are in the YA genre, but every once in a while I come across something that convinces me to branch out a little. Crazy Rich Asians is one of those books. With it's gold glittery cover with the pink lettering, I was automatically drawn to it, before I even knew what it was about. I like glitter, and I like pink, so it was an easy decision. And then I read the summary.
 
Here's the summary from Goodreads: Crazy Rich Asians is the outrageously funny debut novel about three super-rich, pedigreed Chinese families and the gossip, backbiting, and scheming that occurs when the heir to one of the most massive fortunes in Asia brings home his ABC (American-born Chinese) girlfriend to the wedding of the season. When Rachel Chu agrees to spend the summer in Singapore with her boyfriend, Nicholas Young, she envisions a humble family home, long drives to explore the island, and quality time with the man she might one day marry. What she doesn't know is that Nick's family home happens to look like a palace, that she'll ride in more private planes than cars, and that with one of Asia's most eligible bachelors on her arm, Rachel might as well have a target on her back. Initiated into a world of dynastic splendor beyond imagination, Rachel meets Astrid, the It Girl of Singapore society; Eddie, whose family practically lives in the pages of the Hong Kong socialite magazines; and Eleanor, Nick's formidable mother, a woman who has very strong feelings about who her son should--and should not--marry. Uproarious, addictive, and filled with jaw-dropping opulence, Crazy Rich Asians is an insider's look at the Asian JetSet; a perfect depiction of the clash between old money and new money; between Overseas Chinese and Mainland Chinese; and a fabulous novel about what it means to be young, in love, and gloriously, crazily rich.


What I Liked: 1) Rachel. Rachel is the MAIN main character of the book (because there are actually a TON of characters who we follow in this book). But of all of those characters, Rachel is really the one who is thrust into this new world that she knows nothing about. And her down-to-earth personality made her a very likeable and releatable character. I loved the way she handled most of the situations she encounters, and her naivete when it comes to some things is both refreshing and amusing. 2) Astrid. Described as the "It Girl of Singapore" Astrid seems to have everything handed to her on a silver platter. But it hasn't affected her personality as much as it does some of the other characters. You could definitely tell that she'd been raised with a lot of money, but she isn't as...in your face about it as the older generation characters. I also loved every detail that author Kevin Kwan used when describing her fashion sense. It made me insanely jealous in a fun way. 3) Nick. It's not hard to like Nick, although there were times when I thought he was being incredibly dense. It wasn't fair of him to throw Rachel into the situation with his family without any warning. Astrid (Nick's cousin) even warned him that she needed to be prepared, and he didn't take her advice. Yet even so, he was caring and warm, and had an air of strength about him that made him follow his heart instead of his family and their money. I liked him a lot. 4) The humor! I like books that have a great sense of humor. It wasn't that there were jokes being told, but the events that the characters were involved in, and the reactions they had to certain things were very funny. It was just one of the many things that kept me interested from the very beginning of the story. 5) There was an sense of...some sort of impending, horrible thing that was going to happen between Nick's mother and Rachel, or even Nick. I'm calling it suspense, but this story isn't a mystery or anything. You can just tell that it's all building up to some sort of epic, family smack-down, or whatever equivalent a Crazy Rich Asian family has of an epic family smack-down. I loved that buildup, and the fact that you could tell something was coming but I couldn't figure out who was going to breakdown first, and when and what exactly would happen. It was awesome.

What I Didn't Like: The only problem I had with the book was how many characters we were following. If you don't pay close attention to the chapter breaks, it's easy to get confused about who is talking. But it did not hinder my enjoyment of the book very much!

Overall Thoughts: Crazy Rich Asians is a MUST-READ this summer for anyone who enjoys smart and funny chick-lit! The characters are personable and funny, the plot flows seamlessly, and the humor will keep you on your toes from the very beginning. Pay attention to chapter breaks so you will know which character's story you're getting, especially in the beginning. But I can't imagine anyone not finding this book enjoyable. I'm already ready to sink into a lounge chair and enjoy it again!

My Rating: 5 shots

2 comments:

  1. I love chick lits because they always seem to have a fantastic level of humor in their books. I also recently ventured out with a non YA book and that was The Heist by Janet Evanovich & Lee Goldberg. I loved it. I am glad Nick was an enjoyable character even with his denseness at times :P

    great review,
    - Juhina @ Maji Bookshelf

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