'Crazy Rich Asians' Author Kevin Kwan Recommended 30 Books For The Strand Bookstore & Your TBR Is About To Get A Lot Longer
Author Kevin Kwan has had a very big summer. The film-version of his rom-com/family drama Crazy Rich Asians was a smash hit at the box office — so much so that a sequel has already been announced. But if you can't wait until the second movie (and have already read through all three books in his series), you might be looking for another way to bide your time. Kwan has a solution: He recommended 30 books for his Author's Bookshelf at The Strand Bookstore in New York City, and Bustle has the full details on his selections below.
For those unaware, Kwan is the author of three novels — Crazy Rich Asians, China Rich Girlfriend and Rich People Problems — which follows Chinese-American Rachel Chu, who discovers that her boyfriend, Nick Young, is actually part of an incredibly rich, massively successful, totally famous family from Singapore. As Rachel navigates Nick's world in Singapore, she learns a thing or two about Asian family politics, class divides, and the cost of true love. It's not surprising then that Kwan's picks for The Strand include many books that dive into the same themes as his novels.
Of his selections, Kwan tells Bustle, "All these books look at power and privilege through different lenses and voices, while also being gloriously fun reads."
The Strand Bookstore plans to have Kwan's Author Table set up on Sept. 17, so you can plan your book shopping trip accordingly. Check out five selections from his picks below, and then scour the entire list before you head out to The Strand:
'Pride and Prejudice' by Jane Austen
You probably know the story of Jane Austen's Pride & Prejudice by now: Fiercely independent Elizabeth Bennett, one of five sisters who must marry rich, confounds the arrogant, wealthy Mr. Darcy, and eventually — after many mishaps and against the wishes of his family — the two fall in love. There are definitely some parallels there with Crazy Rich Asians.
'The Windfall' by Diksha Basu
When Mr. Jha comes into an enormous sum of money, he moves his wife from their housing complex in East Delhi to the super-rich side of town. The move sets off a chain of events that brings unintended consequences, ultimately forcing the Jha family to contemplate what really matters in life.
'The Piano Teacher' by Janice Y.K. Lee
When her husband is transferred to Hong Kong in 1951, Claire Pendleton accepts a position as a piano teacher to the daughter of a wealthy couple, the Chens. Claire soon finds herself taken with both the sweltering city and the Chen's driver, Will Truesdale. But a further examination of her situation leaves her with more questions than answers.
'A Book of Common Prayer' by Joan Didion
A Book of Common Prayer is the story of two American women in the Central American nation of Boca Grande. Grace Strasser-Mendana controls much of the country's wealth and knows virtually all of its secrets; Charlotte Douglas has come to Boca Grande hoping to be reunited with her fugitive daughter. Despite their differences, their stories become intertwined in fascinating ways.
'Orlando' by Virginia Woolf
Virginia Woolf's novel follows Orlando, a young nobleman who awakes one day to find that he is a woman. Spanning three decades, the novel indulges in farce and irony to consider the roles of women in the 18th and 19th centuries.