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Doubleday Canada Fall 2020

Sex and Vanity
By (author): Kevin Kwan
Kevin Kwan


Doubleday Canada



Product Form:



General Trade
Jun 30, 2020
$34.95 CAD


9.6in x 6.5 x 1.3 in | 1.49 lb

Page Count:

336 pages
Doubleday Canada
FICTION / Asian American


The iconic author of the bestselling phenomenon Crazy Rich Asians returns with a glittering tale of love and longing as a young woman finds herself torn between two worlds—the WASP establishment of her father’s family and George Zao, a man she is desperately trying to avoid falling in love with.

On her very first morning on the jewel-like island of Capri, Lucie Churchill sets eyes on George Zao and she instantly can’t stand him. She can’t stand it when he gallantly offers to trade hotel rooms with her so that she can have the view of the Tyrrhenian Sea, she can’t stand that he knows more about Curzio Malaparte than she does, and she really can’t stand it when he kisses her in the darkness of the ancient ruins of a Roman villa and they are caught by her snobbish, disapproving cousin, Charlotte. “Your mother is Chinese so it’s no surprise you’d be attracted to someone like him,” Charlotte teases. Daughter of an American-born-Chinese mother and blue-blooded New York father, Lucie has always sublimated the Asian side of herself in favor of the white side, and she adamantly denies having feelings for George. But several years later, when George unexpectedly appears in East Hampton where Lucie is weekending with her new fiancé, Lucie finds herself drawn to George again. Soon, Lucy is spinning a web of deceit that involves her family, her fiancé, the co-op board of her Fifth Avenue apartment, and ultimately herself as she tries mightily to deny George entry into her world—and her heart. Moving between summer playgrounds of privilege, peppered with decadent food and extravagant fashion, Sex and Vanity is a truly modern love story, a daring homage to A Room with a View, and a brilliantly funny comedy of manners set between two cultures.

CRAZY RICH ASIANS: Kevin Kwan’s blockbuster trilogy hit #1, #2, and #3 on The New York Times bestseller list, a nearly unheard of feat in publishing. The incredible sales of book 3, Rich People Problems, demonstrates a real commitment and devotion from Kevin’s readership.

THREE NEW BOOKS: This is the first in a new 3-book deal for Kevin, to be known as “The Cities Trilogy,” each set in one of the world’s great cities: New York, London and Paris.

PARTNERS: Doubleday US was a powerhouse partner for the first trilogy and will be for this one too. We have Century in the UK joining us this time around.

“OVER-INDEX”: It’s what we do in Canada when it comes to Kevin Kwan.

ACCLAIMED AUTHOR: Kevin Kwan is a cultural phenomenon. He is a Time magazine 100 Influential People pick, one of “Hollywood’s Most Powerful Authors” per the Hollywood Reporter, and was inducted into the Asian Hall of Fame. In addition to the forthcoming movie adaptations of China Rich Girlfriend and Rich People Problems, Kwan has a new Quibi show called “Empires of Luxury” and an Amazon TV project in the works.

SIZZLING SUMMER READS: With the mass market editions of the Crazy Rich Asians books publishing one a month starting in May and this one now publishing in July, we are in for a Kevin Kwan-filled summer.

KEVIN KWAN is the author of the international bestsellers Crazy Rich Asians, a major motion picture, China Rich Girlfriend and Rich People Problems. Born in Singapore, he has called New York’s West Village home since 1995.

Author Residence: New York, NY

Author Hometown: Singapore

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Author Website: www.kevinkwanbooks.com

Author Social Media: Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @KevinKwanBooks

BEST BOOK OF 2020: Marie Claire, NPR, New York Post, Kobo

"Kevin Kwan's new book is his most decadent yet." —Entertainment Weekly

"Kevin Kwan has had a singular influence on Asian American storytelling and Hollywood's pop cultural landscape." —Yoonj Kim, Los Angeles Times

"Kevin Kwan has dedicated his fourth novel, Sex and Vanity, to two unique destinations. One is New York . . . the other is the Italian island of Capri. . . . Both locales—rich, glamorous, and filled with their share of both insiders and outsiders looking for their ticket in—serve as backdrops for Kwan's latest ode to love, class, and the problematic, hilarious search for happiness in a world spinning with too much of pretty much everything. Kwan . . . is an urban romantic and he's also a keen observer of social mores and the Teflon charms of an offbeat character. Sex and Vanity is sharp, clever, and irresistibly drawn." —Interview

"Another riveting tale of privilege, culture and romance . . . in a world of extravagant fashion and deceit, resulting in one truly modern love story that you won’t be able to put down." —CNN

"A summer romp with a satirical sting." —NPR

"When the room with a view is Kevin Kwan's, things might get wild. . . . There's no other way you're getting to Capri this summer. Here's a ticket." —Janet Maslin, New York Times Book Review

"Part of the novel's fun is that Kwan is in on the joke: He excels at satirizing the uber-rich. He's also an Olympic-level name-dropper. If I had a dollar for every reference to an A-list designer or brand mentioned here, I’d be—well, still not a fraction as wealthy as these characters. . . . Kwan's trademark snark, which hooked Crazy Rich Asians fans, remains on display in this new offering . . . readers who follow suit can revel in the kind of extravagances that sound like a dream after months of isolation and anxiety during the coronarvirus pandemic." —Washington Post

"The Shakespeare of Status Anxiety. . . . Dishy and delightful, filled with all sorts of bad behavior performed in couture. But as loose and fun and compulsively readable as they are, Kwan's novels are also very clearly the work of someone who spends much of his social time paying extremely close attention." —The Atlantic

"A razor-sharp rake on the one percent. . . .Like Truman Capote or Dominick Dunne before him, Kwan seems to be writing from inside the rarefied rooms where his stories take place—and he doesn't pull any punches." —Town & Country

"Deliciously modern . . . drama, diamonds, and satire galore." —Vanity Fair

"On its face, the story is a zippy beach read, but Kwan engages with serious subject matter (racism, identity, and deep-rooted Asian classism) all while thoroughly lampooning the extravagance of the ultrarich. . . . The best part is that like all of Kwan's work, Sex and Vanity also functions as a vacation read—it's funny, there are ridiculous, steamy sex scenes, and part of the book takes place at a luxurious destination wedding. It's the kind of thing you can take to whatever beach substitute you're working with right now (the bedroom with the most sun, or a patch of asphalt at the nearest park) and escape for a little while." —The Cut

"Kwan's latest novel Sex and Vanity is a retelling of E. M. Forster’s A Room With a View. In Kwan’s hands, the classically white, British tale’s setting gets an update from the early 1900s to the 2010s, trading in a cast of characters from England’s stuffy upper crust for one of lavish, jet-setting Asian socialites." —Bustle

"A deliciously fun romp from Capri to Manhattan and East Hampton. Kwan is in fine form, gleefully name-dropping luxury brands and socialites as he spins a heartfelt, satirical tale that observes the price of fame, fortune and following your heart." —BookPage

"True love will find a way, even among the status-obsessed and filthy rich... [With] irresistibly knowing humor and delightful central characters... While he’s engineering the timeless love story and continuing our postgraduate education in all the things money can buy, Kwan manages to take a few swipes against snobbery and racism. Nice. This is the only way you’re getting to Capri this year. Why resist?" —Kirkus Reviews

"Kwan follows up his Crazy Rich Asians trilogy with an intoxicating, breezy update of E.M. Forster's A Room with a View. . . . Kwan exploits the Forster frame for clever references—including Merchant and Ivory—and provides amusing footnotes. Kwan also relishes describing lavish meals and haute couture clothing, as well as Isabel's decadent wedding and Cecil's imaginative, over-the-top proposal. There are moments both catty and witty. . . . [A] delectable comedy of manners—the literary equivalent of white truffle and caviar pizza." —Publishers Weekly

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