China Rich Girlfriend
Goodreads ratings
3.82 / 5

"China Rich Girlfriend" Summary

By Kevin Kwan

fiction | 378 pages | Published in 2015

Kevin Kwan, bestselling author of Crazy Rich Asians, is back with a wickedly funny new novel of social climbing, secret e-mails, art-world scandal, lovesick billionaires, and the outrageous story of what happens when Rachel Chu, engaged to marry Asia's most eligible bachelor, discovers her birthfather. On the eve of her wedding to Nicholas Young, heir to one of the greatest fortunes in Asia, Rachel should be over the moon. She has a flawless Asscher-cut diamond from JAR, a wedding dress she loves more than anything found in the salons of Paris, and a fiance willing to sacrifice his entire inheritance in order to marry her. But Rachel still mourns the fact that her birthfather, a man she never knew, won't be able to walk her down the aisle. Until: a shocking revelation draws Rachel into a world of Shanghai splendor beyond anything she has ever imagined. Here we meet Carlton, a Ferrari-crashing bad boy known for Prince Harry-like antics; Colette, a celebrity girlfriend chased by fevered paparazzi; and the man Rachel has spent her entire life waiting to meet: her father. Meanwhile, Singapore's It Girl, Astrid Leong, is shocked to discover that there is a downside to having a newly minted tech billionaire husband. A romp through Asia's most exclusive clubs, auction houses, and estates, China Rich Girlfriend brings us into the elite circles of Mainland China, introducing a captivating cast of characters, and offering an inside glimpse at what it's like to be gloriously, crazily, China-rich.


Estimated read time: 5 min read

One Sentence Summary

Rachel Chu discovers her long-lost father and becomes immersed in the extravagant world of China's elite.


"China Rich Girlfriend" is a captivating novel written by Kevin Kwan, which delves into the extravagant lives of Asia's ultra-rich. Picking up from where "Crazy Rich Asians" left off, this sequel continues to explore the opulent lifestyles, family drama, and societal expectations of the elite in Asia. With Kwan's signature wit and satire, the novel offers a peek into the world of extreme wealth, cultural clashes, and the complexities of relationships.

Brief Synopsis

Plot Overview

The story revolves around Rachel Chu, an intelligent and independent woman who discovers that her birth father is one of the wealthiest men in Asia. As she navigates the intricacies of this newfound elite status, she is thrust into a world of luxury, glamour, and excess. The novel also follows the lives of other characters, offering a glimpse into their opulent lifestyles and the challenges they face in their quest for love, acceptance, and success.


The majority of the story takes place in Singapore, Hong Kong, and Shanghai, cities that serve as playgrounds for the ultra-wealthy. These locations provide a backdrop for the extravagant events, lavish parties, and luxurious lifestyles depicted in the novel.

Main Characters

The novel features a rich ensemble of characters, each with their own unique traits and complexities.

Rachel ChuAn intelligent, self-made woman who is thrust into the world of extreme wealth and privilege.
Nick YoungRachel's husband, who hails from one of the wealthiest families in Asia.
Astrid LeongNick's glamorous cousin, who grapples with family expectations and personal struggles.
Eleanor YoungNick's formidable mother, known for her traditional values and high standards.
Kitty PongA social climber who is determined to rise through the ranks of the elite society.
Carlton BaoRachel's birth father, a powerful and enigmatic figure in the world of extreme wealth.

Story Points Over Chapters

Chapter 1-5: The Revelation

Rachel discovers the truth about her birth father and his immense wealth, leading to a whirlwind of emotions and a newfound sense of identity. Meanwhile, Astrid grapples with the complexities of her failing marriage and the expectations placed upon her by her family.

Chapter 6-10: Unveiling Secrets

As Rachel navigates her newfound elite status, she uncovers shocking secrets about her birth father's past. Nick's cousin, Astrid, struggles with her failing marriage and contends with the scrutiny of the elite society.

Chapter 11-15: The World of Luxury

The characters are immersed in the world of extreme wealth, attending extravagant events and navigating the complexities of their relationships. Rachel's birth father, Carlton, becomes a prominent figure, adding further complexity to the already intricate family dynamics.

Chapter 16-20: Family Drama

Tensions rise as family secrets come to light, creating rifts and conflicts within the elite circles. The characters are forced to confront their own desires, ambitions, and the expectations placed upon them by society.

Chapter 21-25: Revelations and Redemption

The novel reaches its climax as long-held secrets are exposed, relationships are tested, and the characters are faced with pivotal decisions. Themes of redemption, forgiveness, and self-discovery come to the forefront, leading to a compelling and satisfying conclusion.

Main Events

  • Rachel's discovery of her birth father's identity and immense wealth
  • Astrid's struggles with her failing marriage and family expectations
  • Revelations of family secrets and their impact on relationships
  • Immersion into the world of extreme wealth and societal pressures
  • Climactic events leading to redemption and self-discovery for the characters

Themes and Insights


  1. Wealth and Privilege: The novel explores the extravagant lifestyles and societal pressures of the ultra-rich, shedding light on the complexities and challenges that come with extreme wealth.
  2. Family Dynamics: The intricacies of family relationships, expectations, and conflicts are central to the narrative, offering insights into the complexities of familial bonds in the midst of opulence.
  3. Identity and Self-Discovery: Characters grapple with their identities, self-worth, and the pursuit of authenticity amidst the pressures of societal expectations and extreme wealth.


  • The novel provides a nuanced portrayal of the clash between tradition and modernity within elite Asian society.
  • It offers a critique of materialism and the superficiality that often accompanies extreme wealth.
  • The complexities of love, relationships, and personal growth are explored within the opulent backdrop of the narrative.

Reader's Takeaway

"China Rich Girlfriend" offers a voyeuristic journey into the world of extreme wealth, family drama, and societal expectations. Readers will find themselves immersed in the opulent settings, complex relationships, and compelling character arcs. The novel provides a thought-provoking exploration of the human experience within the context of immense privilege and societal pressures.


Kevin Kwan's "China Rich Girlfriend" presents a compelling narrative that delves into the lives of the ultra-rich in Asia, exploring themes of wealth, family, identity, and self-discovery. With its engaging plot, vibrant characters, and insightful commentary, the novel offers readers a captivating glimpse into a world of extravagance and complexity.

China Rich Girlfriend FAQ

  1. What is 'China Rich Girlfriend' about?

    China Rich Girlfriend is a novel by Kevin Kwan that follows the story of Rachel Chu as she navigates the complex world of Asia's ultra-wealthy elite, reconnects with her long-lost father, and deals with the challenges of her new social status.

  2. Is 'China Rich Girlfriend' a sequel?

    Yes, 'China Rich Girlfriend' is the sequel to Kevin Kwan's debut novel, 'Crazy Rich Asians.' It continues the story of the characters introduced in the first book.

  3. Do I need to read 'Crazy Rich Asians' before reading 'China Rich Girlfriend'?

    It is recommended to read 'Crazy Rich Asians' before 'China Rich Girlfriend' as it provides important background information and context for the characters and their relationships.

  4. What themes are explored in 'China Rich Girlfriend'?

    The novel explores themes of family dynamics, social class, cultural identity, and the complexities of relationships in the context of extreme wealth and privilege.

  5. Is 'China Rich Girlfriend' primarily set in China?

    While China is one of the settings in the novel, the story also takes place in other locations such as Singapore, Hong Kong, and the United States.