Review: The Fortunes of Jaded Women by Carolyn Huynh

Carolyn Huynh's debut novel is a beautiful story about generations of cursed women. It is well known in Little Sagon that the Durong sisters are cursed--that the women in the family never find love or happiness, and that their daughters always give birth to more daughters, not sons. Then one day, Mai Nguyen hears a surprising prediction from her trusted psychic, a son will be born into the family at last, lifting the curse. In preparation for this even, she begins reuniting the women of the family, with surprising consequences.

This was an amusing, and occasionally heartbreaking, read about a family of women who not only believed themselves to be cursed, but the hardships the encountered in their lives--coming to the United States from Vietnam as refugees, rebuilding their lives and trying to shape better lives for their daughters, all of whom have different hopes and aspirations from their mothers. Parts of the story reminded me a little of The Joy Luck Club, while some of the novels more amusing moments had me drawing comparisons to Crazy Rich Asians. Ultimately, though, it is a story of family, resilience and acceptance.


Thank you to Simon and Schuster Australia for my ARC of The Fortunes of Jaded Women.


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