📖 6 | 30
⏲ Read time: 3-5 minutes
In the second installment of the Crazy Rich Asians series, we continue to follow Rachel Chu and her now-husband Nicholas Young through another wild goose-chase of jetsetting and the lap of luxury.
We pick up about three years after we left off with Rachel and Nicholas, as they prepare for their wedding. Nicholas’ estranged mother, Eleanor, plays good samaritan and reunites Rachel with her biological birth-father during their rehearsal dinner. Come to find out, the man that Rachel’s mother, Kerry, fell in love with all those years ago, turned out to become one of Beijing’s top politicians.
Gaoliang urges Rachel and Nicholas to come visit China over the summer for their honeymoon and the second they land, things seem fishy: The plan was to stay at the Bao’s household, but as “fate” (or a very adamant wife who doesn’t want the thought of a bastard child ruining the image she’s strived for) would have it, Gaoliang has meetings and appointments that forces him away from his guests.
In comes Carlton, Rachel’s half-brother, who sweeps Rachel and Nicholas off their feet and treats them to a lap of luxury with his not-girlfriend and Chinese socialite Collette Bing. Party-boy Carlton has his own dark secret though: he was involved in a high-profile car crash in London that paralyzed a woman, while also killing another, which his mother had covered up to preserve the family name.
We continue to keep tabs on other members of the family, like Astrid Leong and husband Michael. When we left them in CRA, Michael felt that he wasn’t good enough for Astrid’s family and that his accomplishments would never amount to anything, forcing himself to stage an “affair”, so it wouldn’t hurt Astrid’s feelings too much.
A newly minted billionaire courtesy of Astrid’s ex-lover Charlie Wu, Astrid quickly learns the man she married, who defied the social norms of her family, isn’t exactly what she signed up for and the cost of new-found fame and wealth might be more than she bargained for.
We also follow “Miss Katharine Tai”, or formally known as Kitty Pong, as she tries to save her image and become a socialite of Hong Kong, reversing the drama and rumors speculated about her. She hires the help of Corinna Ko-Tung to revamp her lifestyle, while fighting the hostage rumors about her husband Bernard and child.
Just like CRA, I couldn’t help but feel a lot of remorse for Rachel. She was presumed to be a ‘bastard’ child, when in actuality, she just wanted to know her father and never expected him to be an influential person of China. She would have loved him just the same if he never amounted to anything, it was just the notion of knowing who he was.
There’s a major twist in this story that completely caught me off guard, but without spoiling it, let’s just say that this was too far of a stretch, even for something as ludicrous as the Asian lifestyle.
Author Kevin Kwan continues to entertain with his style of writing and I really liked how he managed to throw more tabloid pieces in to illustrate the lifestyle of these people. I’ve already got my hands on the third installment of CRA and I’m excited to see just how much bigger Kwan can pump these families’ egos.
Rating: 3 out of 5