Rich People Problems: Book Review


The final book in Kevin Kwan’s series is Rich People Problems and like the two before this, it doesn’t disappoint.

In fact, I would go so far as to say it was my favourite book.

You can read the reviews on Crazy Rich Asians and China Rich Girlfriend, in case you missed them.

This book starts with the matriarch of the family and Nick’s Ah Ma (grandmother) on her death bed and the entire family is vying to be will-worthy. Rumor has it, since Nick decided to go against his grandmother’s wishes five years ago, and marry Rachel, he was removed from the will and the title of favourite grandchild is no longer his.

But whose is it?

That’s the question everyone is trying to figure out. As Su Yi’s daughters set up vigil and the guests start arriving, the second biggest question in the book is, will Nick return to Singapore before it’s too late?

It reminded me of a mafia movie, in the sense that the head of the family is on her last breathe, and the remaining families are trying to jockey for control and the top prize. In this case, it’s the keys to Tyersall Park, the 64 acre estate, not to mention Su Yi’s treasures and inheritance.

As the caravan of cars full of family from far and wide starts winding around the long driveway of Tyersall Park, we get to see a taste of all the characters from the past two books, as well as some we only read as part of the family tree that Kwan includes in the front of each book. And as these characters wait for the inevitable, the comedy only builds.

Which sounds horrible, I know, but remember this is just a book.

There are other storylines we get to wrap up, including the fairytale love of Astrid and Charlie, and their respective divorces, and the whirlwind disaster that surrounds them both ends of that spectrum.

Kitty Pong is still trying to climb that social ladder and once again all her antics and plans don’t always go as planned. Especially since her step-daughter Collette is back in the picture. The step-daughter she has never met, but is doing everything in her power to appear better than. Remember, these books are all about appearances, so this battle definitely brings the laughs.

And finally, my favourite character, Edison (Eddie) Chang is back in his full glory.  Eddie vies for title of favourite grandson like his life depended on it. He clamours for Su Yi’s attention and claws for his place as if it were an Olympic sport. It is comedy gold. They are my favourite parts of the book.

Kwan also kept up the opulent descriptions of clothing, jewels, locales and food. His writing style is engaging and the content, while I may not actually relate to in real life, still brings me completely into this world. It is incredible to imagine the world of the filthy rich. The crazy rich.

And yes, some of them are crazy. But they are all crazy rich. No comma was included on the covers on purpose.

I highly recommend this series. This last book, like the other two, is entertaining, funny, and luxurious. But strip all of that away; strip the acres of land, the grand homes and majestic fashions and you are left with a family. Just a family who deal with sibling rivalry, race relations, parental pressures and family wishes. A family that isn’t afraid to impose unrealistic dreams on each other. Just like every other family, right? Where each person is really just trying to find their place in the world and among their relatives; find love and happiness, while making everyone around them happy; and in the end, just trying to be accepted.

It’s all of this and more.

4.5 stars

Mr. Kwan, if you’re reading this, please, please consider an additional book with just Eddie.

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