China Rich Girlfriend
AuthorKevin Kwan
Publication date
June 2015
Media typePrint
Preceded byCrazy Rich Asians 
Followed byRich People Problems 

China Rich Girlfriend is a 2015 satirical romantic comedy novel by Kevin Kwan. It is the sequel to Crazy Rich Asians, a novel about the wealthy Singapore elite. Kwan was urged to write the sequel by his publishers after the initial success of Crazy Rich Asians.[1] The title refers to a line in the novel in which Nick's mother, Eleanor, exclaims over the wealth of the "China rich" who are billionaires, "These people aren't just everyday rich with a few hundred million. They are China rich!"[2][3][4] The novel was followed by a sequel, Rich People Problems, in 2017.


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Rachel Chu and Nicholas Young have repaired their relationship after her disastrous visit to his family.

As a result of their engagement, Nicholas is estranged from his mother Eleanor and his grandmother. His aunt Jacqueline Ling informs him that in consequence of his planned marriage, he will find himself shut out of his family and his ancestral home, and warns him that this will be more intolerable than he anticipates.

In Crazy Rich Asians, Rachel learned that the man her mother had been married to in China was not her biological father, and that her mother does not know her real father's whereabouts or even what name he currently has. Rachel yearns to connect with him.

Carlton Bao, the only son of very wealthy Mainland Chinese parents, is a student in Britain. He crashes his Ferrari and is badly injured. His mother Bao Shaoyen, while lunching with Eleanor Young and some friends, shows them a photo of Carlton before the accident, and they realize he strongly resembles Rachel Chu.

Nick's cousin Astrid has been reunited with her husband Michael, and their marriage is on a more even financial footing now that Michael's tech company is financially successful and her family respects him. However, Michael's prosperity does not make him even-tempered. Meanwhile Charlie Wu, Astrid's onetime fiancé who secretly engineered the success of Michael's firm in order to make Astrid happy, is struggling in his marriage with Isabel.

Kitty Pong, the former actress whose marriage to Bernard Tai brought her into the Singapore elite, tries to buy her way into the high society of Hong Kong by appearing in gossip magazines and buying high-profile art. However, she is socially clumsy. Finding herself continually shunned, she hires the services of Corinna Ko-Tung, a woman from a well-born family, who helps Kitty appear more sophisticated.

Eleanor Young learns that her son and Rachel have settled on a wedding date and a location in California. Outraged, she pries more details from Astrid's young son and intrudes upon their wedding rehearsal. She informs Rachel that she has located her long-lost father, and she reconnects him with Rachel and her mother. Eleanor decides that she approves of Nick and Rachel's marriage, Nick is suspicious and asks her why she is reversing her position. She reveals it wasn't just because Rachel now associates with the wealthy elite of China, but also that Eleanor was trying to protect both him and Rachel from Su Yi's wrath. Years ago, she endured life as Su Yi's disapproved daughter-in-law due to Philip marrying her out of love. Rachel meets her father, Bao Gaoliang, prior to the wedding, and is afterwards invited to spend time with his entire family in Shanghai during her honeymoon. Bao Shaoyen, Gaoliang's wife, is angered by this and demands Bao Gaoliang keep her away from her house. He places her in a fancy hotel and stalls any meeting for over a week, but Nick suspects mischief.

Carlton is also banned from associating with her, but decides to meet Rachel anyway, and quickly becomes close with her and Nick. He introduces her to his wealthy unofficial girlfriend Colette Bing. The four of them eventually travel to Paris for a shopping spree. At a party, Colette's official boyfriend of three years, Richie Yang, proposes but she does not accept. He gets angry at Carlton; and the two begin a fight.

Rachel begins to feel upset she has only met her father once since reuniting. Colette and Rachel try to stop Carlton from a drag race against Richie. In anger, he accidentally tells Rachel that Bao Shaoyen refuses to let her into her household. Bao Shaoyen is in fear of losing her husband's political advantages for having an illegitimate child, and wishes to prevent Rachel from receiving Carlton's inheritance. Before leaving, Colette calls him a spoiled brat for hurting Rachel and tells him to go through with the race with Richie. Upon learning about his previous accident, Rachel convinces Carlton not to race Richie. In turn, Carlton apologizes to Rachel for his behavior.

Rachel decides to leave China, but returns for a spa weekend with her friend Peik Lin. However, at the spa, she becomes very ill and is placed under medical watch after experiencing mysterious organ failures. Peik Lin and Nick receive a bouquet of flowers with a note, saying that Rachel was poisoned with Tarquinioid, a rare poison, as a warning. The poison is extremely rare, and Carlton realizes that his parents' pharmaceutical company may be involved, as they recently acquired the rights to distribution of Tarquinioid. Believing Bao Shaoyen poisoned Rachel, he comes home to confront her about it and she denies involvement in the poisoning. Refusing to believe his mother, Carlton then confesses to his father about how she bribed everyone to cover up the truth of his accident as well as the other girl's death. However, when Rachel discovered the truth about the crash, he claims Shaoyen intentionally poisoned her in order to prevent her from causing a scandal. Carlton ends his confession stating that their family will face disgrace from the China Elite, but not by Rachel and him, but when the police come to arrest Shaoyen for his sister's poisoning. Now remorseful for how he's treated Rachel, Bao Gaoliang visits her and Nick over in Hong Kong at Eddie's apartment. Apologizing, Gaoliang confesses that Shaoyen has become cooperative with the police. He invites Rachel into his home, where she is introduced to the rest of his family who are all touched by her story. Bao Shaoyen finally meets Rachel and discovers how similar she looks to her son. She realizes her fears were misplaced and apologizes to her. In doing so, they start to get along.

The police discover that Colette's assistant Roxanne was behind the poisoning, which was done in response to Colette's tearful concerns that her inheritance would be reduced. Despite Colette's lack of knowledge to the situation, Carlton blames Colette for nearly losing his now beloved older sister, and breaks up with her. Nick is hesitant, but Rachel agrees to meet with Colette and accepts her apology. Colette asks that Rachel help her and Carlton reconcile. Rachel does not want to get involved, and Colette becomes hysterical. She accuses Rachel of vindictively keeping them apart, and begins yelling at and berating her. Rachel responds by accusing Colette of being selfish. She points out that she learned to be content in having a loving supportive family and working hard in the real world. Rachel claims that Colette never knew how to be content. The argument ends when Rachel tells Colette to grow up. The incident is taped and becomes widely viewed on WeChat. Humiliated, Colette loses her sponsorship to a popular fashion designer label. This is made worse when she learns through the tabloids that her father, Jack Bing, has been having an affair with Kitty.

Meanwhile, Astrid finds herself increasingly confiding in Charlie Wu after her husband becomes detached and cold. Michael gets interviewed by a magazine about his family, naming him Father of the Year after bragging about his accomplishments and showcasing his luxury items. The magazine then does research into Astrid Leong and publishes information about her lineage and wealth. This angers her family and he is forced to meet with her father, who berates him in front of a man Michael is trying to impress. The magazines are recalled and retracted from distribution, and Michael begins to believe that his company's situation is the result of Astrid's father's meddling. Astrid's father starts digging into Michael's company, showing Astrid that the company was bought at a loss by Charlie so that Michael would feel more confident in the marriage. Michael confronts Astrid about her relationship with Charlie, revealing he has read her messages and threatens her with a weapon. Astrid takes control of the situation and escapes with her son. Later, it is revealed that Charlie Wu had divorced Isabel, and that he and Astrid have not left each other's sides all night.

Kitty Pong and Corinna Ko-Tung, her society consultant, have a problem: no one has seen Kitty's husband, Bernard Tai, in ages. There are rumors regarding his disappearance (he's dead, he's incapacitated, he's Kitty's sex slave somewhere in a dungeon) along with their daughter, Giselle. Kitty reveals to Corinna where Bernard is hiding: in a small house in Los Angeles while undergoing reconstructive surgery. He has dramatically changed from being in California for so long, and Giselle is forced to engage in his new and unfamiliar lifestyle. Kitty kidnaps her daughter and they escape using Jack Bing's private plane. She returns to her lavish house in Singapore with her daughter and reconnects her mother-in-law Carol Tai with her granddaughter, while beginning her lawsuit with Bernard for custody of Giselle.



China Rich Girlfriend was a bestselling novel.[5][6][7]

The novel received positive reviews from Entertainment Weekly[8] and The New York Times,[9] among other publications. Anne Kingston of Maclean's wrote of the novel, "Kevin Kwan’s sequel to the bestselling Crazy Rich Asians is perhaps even more delicious than the first."[10]

The Washington Post named it "the year's best beach reading"[11] and it was excerpted in Vanity Fair.[12]

Film adaptation

Time reported on August 15, 2018 that Kwan has been tasked with developing the sequel to Crazy Rich Asians from his follow-up novel China Rich Girlfriend.[13] The planning is still in pre-production as of August 2018, with several of the key actors currently committed to other projects until 2020.[14] Director Jon Chu was also already committed to shoot the film adaptation of In the Heights, which was scheduled for release in June 2021.[15]

Awkwafina was interviewed in January 2019 and indicated that there were still no scripts for the sequel and that production filming had not started.[16] According to Town and Country magazine, the filming and premiere of the film was not scheduled to take place until 2020.[17] According to a Slash film journal article, the two sequels, including Rich People Problems, was to be shot back-to-back in 2020 once the filming commences.[18] Shooting is expected to be delayed until at least the end of 2020. Screenwriter Adele Lim declined to work on the sequels because of an equal-pay inequity dispute during negotiations in fall 2018.[19] Color Force had hired the experienced Peter Chiarelli to write the screenplay for the Crazy Rich Asians adaptation; when Chu joined the original production, he brought Lim on to add authentic details from Singapore and Malaysia.[20] For the sequels, Warner Brothers had initially offered Lim a salary approximately 18th of Chiarelli's pay; although they later made an offer closer in parity to Chiarelli's, who had offered to split his fee with Lim, Lim declined.[19]

On April 29, 2019, CNBC reported that Harry Shum Jr. is to be cast in the role of playing Astrid's previous boyfriend in the sequel to Crazy Rich Asians, stating, "Shum will play Charlie Wu, the former flame of Astrid Young Teo (played by Gemma Chan), cousin of lead character Nick Young, in China Rich Girlfriend, which is currently in pre-production."[21] The sequel film is expected to focus on the relationship between Charlie and Astrid, the search for Rachel's father, and Kitty Pong.[15]

See also


  1. ^ Baker, Jeanne (23 July 2015). "'When they want something, they want the best': Kevin Kwan on his latest book, China Rich Girlfriend". The Globe and Mail. Archived from the original on 9 December 2015. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
  2. ^ "'China Rich Girlfriend' by Kevin Kwan: EW review". Entertainment Weekly. June 11, 2015. Archived from the original on August 13, 2018. Retrieved August 13, 2018. Here, the focus shifts from Singapore to China, an even more opulent playground: "These people aren't just everyday rich with a few hundred million," snobby matriarch Eleanor Young breathlessly explains to her son Nick, the hero of both novels. "They are China rich!"
  3. ^ "China Rich Girlfriend, Kevin Kwan". Literary Treats. 15 June 2015. Archived from the original on 13 August 2018. Retrieved 13 August 2018. There's rich, then there's crazy rich. And then there's China rich. As Eleanor Young explains to her son Nick, "Aiyah, these people aren't just everyday rich with a few hundred million. They are China rich! ..."
  4. ^ "'Crazy Rich Asians' Author Kevin Kwan: "Why Does Hollywood Think We'd Want to See This Movie With White People?"". The Hollywood Reporter. June 26, 2015. Archived from the original on August 13, 2018. Retrieved August 13, 2018.
  5. ^ "Best Sellers". Straits Times. 12 July 2015. Archived from the original on 23 February 2016. Retrieved 10 April 2016.
  6. ^ "San Francisco Chronicle best-sellers, July 5". San Francisco Chronicle. 2 July 2015. Archived from the original on 23 April 2016. Retrieved 10 April 2016.
  7. ^ "The Maclean's Bestsellers list: week of July 14". Maclean's. Archived from the original on 20 April 2016. Retrieved 10 April 2016.
  8. ^ Busis, Hillary. "China Rich Girlfriend by Kevin Kwan: EW review". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on 14 September 2015. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
  9. ^ Maslin, Janet (28 June 2015). "Review: Kevin Kwan's 'China Rich Girlfriend' Skewers Vulgar Wealth in Asia". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 9 October 2015. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  10. ^ Kingston, Anne. "Jane Austen meets Hong Kong's nouveau riche". Archived from the original on 21 February 2016. Retrieved 10 April 2016.
  11. ^ Rosenberg, Alyssa. "In this year's best beach reading, Jane Austen meets Singapore". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on 17 December 2015. Retrieved 10 April 2016.
  12. ^ Kwan, Kevin (12 June 2015). "Read an Excerpt from the Summer's Funniest Beach Read". Vanity Fair. Archived from the original on 12 April 2016. Retrieved 10 April 2016.
  13. ^ Ho, Karen (August 15, 2018). "Crazy Rich Asians Is Going to Change Hollywood. It's About Time". TIME. pp. 40–46. Archived from the original on 2 September 2018. Retrieved 25 August 2018. (physically published in August 27, 2018 issue; digitally published on August 15)
  14. ^ Dumarog, Ana (August 28, 2018). "Crazy Rich Asians 2: Everything We Know About The Sequel's Story". Screen Rant ORIGINALS. Archived from the original on August 30, 2018. Retrieved August 29, 2018.
  15. ^ a b Sun, Rebecca; Ford, Rebecca (August 22, 2018). "'Crazy Rich Asians' Sequel Moves Forward With Director Jon M. Chu (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on 5 September 2019. Retrieved 4 September 2019.
  16. ^ Awkwafina Plays Coy About "Crazy Rich Asians" Sequel | E! Red Carpet & Award Shows, archived from the original on 2020-12-05, retrieved 2019-08-22
  17. ^ Hallemann, Caroline (2019-03-06). "Fans Will Have to Wait a While for the Crazy Rich Asians Sequel". Town & Country. Archived from the original on 2019-07-19. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  18. ^ Bui, Hoai-Tran (December 7, 2018). "Crazy Rich Asians Sequels to Shoot Back-to-Back". Slash films journal. Archived from the original on November 8, 2019. Retrieved March 26, 2019.
  19. ^ a b Sun, Rebecca (September 4, 2019). "'Crazy Rich Asians' Co-Writer Exits Sequel Amid Pay Disparity (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on 4 September 2019. Retrieved 4 September 2019.
  20. ^ Sun, Rebecca; Ford, Rebecca (August 1, 2018). "The Stakes Are High for 'Crazy Rich Asians' — And That's the Point". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on August 18, 2018. Retrieved August 19, 2018.
  21. ^ Gilchrist, Karen (April 29, 2019). "Growing up different helped me do my job better, says 'Crazy Rich Asians' star Harry Shum Jr". CNBC. Archived from the original on December 14, 2019. Retrieved May 8, 2019.