Many years ago, when their Vietnamese ancestor Oanh decides to leave her husband for her true love, Oanh’s mother-in-law consults a witch to put a curse on her whole family. Oanh’s modern day descendants are all still dealing with the curse, none of the women can have sons. Cue the chaotic family female drama.
When Mai Nguyen goes for her yearly psychic reading in Kauai she learns of her family’s fate. Someone will get married, someone will get pregnant, and someone will die. If Mai can’t bring everyone together and make amends for the past, she will lose everything. The curse has put some strain on the family for years. Children no longer talk to their mothers, sisters no longer talk each other, the whole clan is not really speaking. Mai contacts her sisters first to try and make up for lost time, and the family begins their process of healing and bringing their transgressions out in the open.
This is a true multi-generational novel. The grandmother, mothers, and grandchildren’s stories are all featured in this book, and I enjoyed seeing how the generations differed. The grandmother, Ly Minh Duong, grew up in Vietnam and brought her daughters over at a young age. In typical Asian stereotype fashion, the mothers are super invested and controlling in their daughter’s lives. The daughters are all American born Vietnamese, and all want to branch out from the more traditional lives their mothers want for them. With a chapter in each woman’s perspective, you get to see the different lives of each of the family with their approach to life, love, and relationships.
For fans of Crazy Rich Asians, The Fortunes of Jaded Woman has some comedic vibes. My favorite scene features Mai and her sisters’ chucking oranges at one another at a restaurant. I enjoyed the drama and once the story got started it was hard for me to put down. Fun, yet emotional, read!
Did you like this book?
Click on a heart to rate it!
GBC Reader Reviews