Title: Rich Again
Author: Anna Maxted
Release Date: December 22, 2009
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Rating: 2 out of 5
Rich Again is the tale of the fabulously wealthy Kent family. There’s Jack and Innocence, who loathe each other completely. Emily, their daughter, is used to her life of luxury and acts older than her years. Claudia, Jack’s adopted daughter from his first marriage, is the only “normal” member of the family, trying to make it as a journalist in New York City. This is story of this family, and the person who tries to bring them down.
I have to preface this review with the statement that this book was not what I expected in any way, shape, or form. I’ve read most of Anna Maxted’s previous works and have enjoyed them. They are all fun, lively chick lit novels with well-written characters. While they’re mostly on the longer side, they have great plots and are enjoyable to read.
Rich Again was completely different than any of Maxted’s previous works. It’s a sordid tale of a filthy rich family. There is sex and gossip galore, complete with infidelity, tabloids, and a psychotic killer who is hell bent on the Kent family’s destruction. I probably would have enjoyed this novel more if I had realized what it was about. However, I’m not the biggest fan of reading about the lifestyles of the rich and famous, especially when almost every character in the novel isn’t likeable.
Claudia really is the only character that the reader can even imagine liking in Rich Again. Innocence is cruel and unfeeling, and only interested in her own advancement. Her treatment of others in this book is atrocious – she’s not someone you love to hate, someone that’s deliciously evil. She’s simply someone you hate. Emily is despicable because she is so ridiculously spoiled. At the beginning of the book, she spends 900,000 pounds on a party for her friends – and she’s only thirteen years old. It’s completely horrible.
At the same time, I could have put Rich Again down at any time, but I didn’t. I wanted to find out what happened to all these characters, whether Emily actually became a decent person, whether Innocence got what was coming to her, or whether Claudia actually found happiness. In the end (which took a long time to come – this is a book that is definitely much longer than it needs to be), I admit that I wish I had put it down. While it was nice to find out what happened, it still wasn’t worth the time I put into this novel.
Suffice it to say, while I definitely recommend Anna Maxted’s other novels, this one fell completely flat for me. I wish I had some warning about how different it was – after all, even the summary on the back of the book still makes it seem like a chick lit novel. If your guilty pleasure is sordid tales of the fabulously wealthy, this would probably be right up your alley, but otherwise definitely steer clear of this one.