Juicy. Juicy. Juicy.
I started this journey in an effort to read Crazy Rich Asians before the movie was released this past August. I am a firm believer that the book is always better than the movie. I also know myself and know once I see a movie I will never read the book. Travesty, maybe. Me, totally. This started as a mission to read before I saw.
It took me a minute to get into Crazy Rich Asians. It was probably the pressure to finish a 527 page book in a few days. Maybe it was the vernacular; words that I am culturally not used to and locations I cannot pronounce. Whatever it was, it took a minute for me to settle into the book and really sink into the juiciness of it all. As I told one of my dearest friends, I could tell the book was so good, I was simply struggling because I was putting pressure on myself.
The book is written in three parts following the lives of many within an Asian family dynasty. The primary characters (if you haven’t heard anything about the books or movie) are Nick Young, Rachel Chu, Astrid Leong and Shang Su Yi / Ah Ma, with a large supporting cast of characters. There are so many twists and turns throughout this book and juicy details about each member of the family that by part two (of book one) I was fully hooked and committed to reading the series. I could not put Crazy Rich Asians down. Literally, my family lost me for a few days. The book is family drama rolled into Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous, paired with my imagination taking me away to beautiful far off destinations. I felt for the characters and wanted to know more about how their lives bobbed and weaved together. The familial drama was so extreme, yet so relatable. It was every little fight I’ve ever had in my family dynamic multiplied by eleven. The level of wealth and their style of living; I can only imagine the lifestyle, but the book places the reader right in the heart of it all. The characters jet setting, private jet owning, couture wearing, jewel collecting and dynasty living lifestyle were all simply part of the charm and the juiciness.
As I finished the first book these people had my heart and I just needed to know what happened next.
As soon as we had seen the movie I felt confident in starting Kevin Kwan’s second book in the series China Rich Girlfriend. Now I needed to know what happened next. This book took a whole new journey; focusing less on Nicky Young and his family, far more focus was paid to Rachel Chu and her story, her journey. Threading a few main characters into the plot yet again (Nick, Rachel, Astrid), introducing a whole new layer of characters and pulling the reader into the lives of all of them.
China Rich Girlfriend is just as juicy, if not even more juicy than Crazy Rich Asians. The level of over-the-top is bananas. At the heart of it all, the familial strife is taken to the absolute next level. There is drama, a lot of living on the edge of extreme indulgence and at the core of of it all, there is love.
Yet again, Kevin Kwan and China Rich Girlfriend pulled me in and did not release me. I needed to keep reading, I needed to make and find time to know what happened next. I wanted to know how the unravelling of this family would turn out. I wanted the story to continue and thankfully, it did…
And then there was Rich People Problems. It was everything it needed to be and everything I wanted it to be. It tied all three books together beautifully with the biggest twists, turns and cliff hangers of the entire series. It had me laughing, it had me crying (on multiple occasions), it had me staying up into the wee hours of the night because I couldn’t put it down.
Rich People Problems kept me guessing, it kept me craving more, it kept me on the edge of my seat until the absolute last word on the last page.
Kevin Kwan has a way. He has a way of writing that simply pulls the reader in and keeps the reader not only engaged, but craving more. I was very late to the Crazy Rich Asians party (the book was released in 2013), late to the China Rich Girlfriend party (released in 2015), potentially a titch late to the Rich People Problems party (released in 2017), but right on time for a voracious reading party. I bought the books as a series and could not stop reading until the story was complete.
I am sad it is over, I am happy it happened. If you missed this reading party until now, go buy these books, grab the entire series and do not stop reading until you have taken in every last word. This is fiction at it’s finest. Juicy. Yummy. Filled with drama and love.