by Kelly Lee
Official Summary: When New Yorker Rachel Chu agrees to spend the summer in Singapore with her boyfriend, Nicholas Young, she envisions a humble family home and quality time with the man she hopes to marry. But Nick has failed to give his girlfriend a few key details. One, that his childhood home looks like a palace; two, that he grew up riding in more private planes than cars; and three, that he just happens to be the country’s most eligible bachelor. On Nick’s arm, Rachel may as well have a target on her back the second she steps off the plane, and soon, her relaxed vacation turns into an obstacle course of old money, new money, nosy relatives, and scheming social climbers.
ALNM rec: As both of your trusty ALNM hosts are half-Chinese and come from Asian families, there is a part of me that really relates to some of the crazy things that Nick’s family says and does in the book. Not to say that either of us are “crazy rich” or come from secret millionaire families in Asia, but both Christina and I can understand the humor and exasperating moments that Nick endures with his family, especially his Asian mother. In our 2018 movie article, I also mentioned that this will be made into a feature film to be released this summer, so make sure you read the book first so you understand the movie even better. Or if you’re not much of a book worm, I suppose you can just wait for the movie.
Available for purchase wherever you buy books or e-books nowadays. Also available for audio book download.
Official summary: A gangster family epic set in 1919 Birmingham, England and centered on a gang who sew razor blades in the peaks of their caps, and their fierce boss Tommy Shelby, who means to move up in the world.
ALNM rec: I just started watching Peaky Blinders, and I'm one of those terrible people who started with the most recent season before going back to watch the rest of the show. But I'm in love with it already. The early 1900s gangster drama is filled with brilliant acting performances from talented cast including Cillian Murphy, Paul Anderson, and Tom Hardy. But the show's pacing and beautiful cinematography are what really pulled me in. I really need more people in my life to watch this so we can have fan freak outs together.
Washington: A Life by Ron Chernow
ALNM rec: I'm a bit of a history buff, with a special interest in the American revolution. For those of you who haven't heard yet, Ron Chernow is the writer of the Alexander Hamilton biography that inspired Lin-Manuel Miranda to write his hit musical, Hamilton. This book is an all encompassing biography of America's first president. It may be long, but it doesn't read at all like a textbook. If you have any interest in George Washington or early American history, this is a must read.
Available for purchase on Amazon