Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan

richMy friend Mary Lynn raved about this, said it was hilarious, one of her top 10 books of the year.  As the first book I read of 2014, I can say perhaps it will make my 2014 best list because she wasn’t kidding. This was so funny, over the top, fascinating, bizarre, exotic and just fun to read. (Mary Lynn and I also may have called it “educational” because of course we believe that the author, raised in Singapore, knows what he’s talking about and is not just making this all up.) Rachel and Nick are a cute couple in their early 30s, living in NYC, both professors. They’ve been together two years and are pretty serious.  Nick asks Rachel to spend the summer in Singapore with him, where he grew up. His best friend is getting married and he wants her to meet his family.  Rachel is excited and nervous. She’s Chinese American, but grew up entirely in America with a single mother. What Rachel doesn’t know is that Nick comes from one of the wealthiest families in Singapore. And the “crazy rich Asians” only see Rachel as a gold digger and not suitable for their family.  These people are so rich they have made sure their property is not visible on Google Earth, have maids that are a perpetual gift from a king, fleets of Daimlers and Bentleys, private jets galore, and spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on jewelry and couture gowns.

Oh. my. gosh. The details of the wealth and lives of luxury was truly astonishing.  Also, side note, very interesting to see how into Bible study and Jesus, and the Methodist schools they all are. Also, the details of food were amazing. I wished this book had pictures so I could better get a grip on what the architecture and food were like. And maybe have a tasting menu to go along with it.

I also liked the story.  Rachel and Nick were a nice couple and I became quite enraged at his horrid family for their treatment of her. Really fascinating and I totally recommend it.


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