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The Majesties

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3.68  ·  Rating details ·  172 ratings  ·  69 reviews
In this riveting and disquieting thriller about the secrets and betrayals that accompany exorbitant wealth—imagine Crazy Rich Asians as written by Gillian Flynn—two sisters from a Chinese-Indonesian family grapple with the past after one of them poisons their entire family.

Gwendolyn and Estella have always been as close as sisters can be. Growing up in a wealthy,
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Hardcover, 272 pages
Expected publication: January 21st 2020 by Atria Books
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Average rating 3.68  · 
Rating details
 ·  172 ratings  ·  69 reviews


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Felicia
Oct 10, 2019 rated it it was ok
Go read the description for this book.

Just bear with me here... go on.
I'll wait.

*insert final Jeopardy theme music*

Sounds dramatic, mysterious, thrilling even. I mean it says "riveting and disquieting thriller" right there!

I'll take 'What is not even close? for $800, Alex'.

This book doesn't know what it wants to be and subsequently ends up being nothing to speak of.

It wants to be a family drama, with extraneous drama that lends nothing to the story.

It wants to be a thriller. No. Just no.

A
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Carol (Bookaria)
Nov 18, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2019, fiction
This novel is described as a thriller in the lines of Crazy Rich Asians written by Gillian Flynn. It was more of a family drama where the main character opens the story by waking up in the hospital after fatally poisoning 300 members of her family, including children.

No Gillian Flynn book has reached this level of destruction, so no, it was not as described.

However, I needed to know why the main character felt the need to eradicate her family's line so I dutifully read on, and as I did I found
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n
i honest-to-god did not put this down at all: it grabs you from the very first pages and does not let you go until the VERY last. perceptive, chilling, and exquisitely crafted and paced — the kind of book you want to reread immediately after you finish.
Elle Rudy
Nov 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley, 2020
There has been a massacre. In the first sentence of the first chapter, the narrator, Gwendolyn, reveals that her sister Estella murdered three hundred people. They’re members of her family, extended family and friends, poisoned for no discernible reason. This is where the story starts, but also where it ends.

It would be wrong to classify this as a thriller or suspense in the traditional sense. If you’re looking for heightened happenings similar to the initial bombshell to be peppered throughout
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Jaclyn Crupi
Oct 08, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Under Your Wings got its claws into me early with its clever and captivating structure, the lush prose (damn good writing here) and its deep dive into complex family dynamics. Who knew I needed a book about bringing down toxic family empires! If you want a read that will grab hold of you from page 1 and not let go, then this is it. And what the hell was that ending!?!?
tara
Mar 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
so quietly intense and relentlessly gripping that it was a struggle to put it down last night, and i picked it up first thing this morning. what a wild ride!!!
Suzanne
Dec 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Hey, Netflix, here's mini-series gold -- an unusual literary thriller about a "filthy rich" Indonesian family, a sort of "Crazy Rich Asians" meets "Big Little Lies."
Jim Skinner
Sep 23, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I didn't see that ending coming!
Cassandra Kavanagh
I almost feel guilty for not liking this book when most people leaving a review here loved it...About a 1/4 of the way in I checked the goodreads reviews in order to make a decision on whether to persist with reading it or not and the glowing recommendations I found encouraged me to continue ,but I should have trusted my own feelings and stopped because I wasn't enjoying it and completing this book to the end became a chore.

I found the story forced and contrived. I honestly felt like it had been
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Madina
Jul 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
HELLO????? (!!!!!!) it was amazing period
Jessica (booksterjess)
Nov 10, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: netgalley
2.5 stars. "Imagine Crazy Rich Asians as written by Gillian Flynn" says the blurb for The Majesties. I love both of those things, and I found the book cover stunning, so I couldn't wait to read this.

The premise is interesting: two sisters from a Chinese-Indonesian family grapple with the past after one of them poisons their entire family. I love character-driven dramas and admittedly, stories about wealthy people doing terrible things. However, this was neither a thriller nor an exciting family
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Lolly K Dandeneau
Sep 17, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
review tomorrow but I didn't expect that ending!
Elaine
Thank you to NetGalley for a Kindle ARC of The Majesties.

I've never read Rich Crazy Asians but I was intrigued by the premise of The Majesties because of the thriller aspect so I was excited when my request was approved.

Also, really cool cover.

** Some itty bitty spoilers ahead! **

Gwendolyn and Estella are as close as sisters can be.

Raised in luxury and wealthy in a prominent Chinese-Indonesian family, the women have had to navigate social expectations, the rigidity of their Asian culture,
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Surya
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Caren
Aug 02, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The best thing about this book was that it made my family look normal! Knowing nothing about the division of classes in Indonesia, especially regarding those with a Chinese background, I was nonetheless quite interested in the backstory, the stereotypes, the discrimination, etc. I was less attached to the main focus itself: the betrayals and interference of a powerful family in the lives of their supposed loved ones (often with fatal consequences). My main disappointment was in not becoming ...more
Melissa Riley
Oct 11, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Gwendolyn and Estella were as close as sisters can be, but when Estella poisons the entire family and Gwendolyn is the only remaining survivor it forces her to reflect on their relationship. Set in the opulence of upper-class Indonesia, the sisters have wanted for nothing. However, as Gwendolyn retraces her footsteps, it becomes apparent that the family has dark secrets that might have contributed to Estella's betrayal.

This mystery is a jigsaw puzzle that is explored through memories, you pick
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Lolly K Dandeneau
Nov 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
via my blog: https://bookstalkerblog.wordpress.com/
'Blood does run thick. Even if poison trumps all.'

A wealthy, successful, prominent Chinese Indonesian family has been poisoned, every single one of them, by one of their own. “It was caught on a surveillance tape, so there’s no denying that Estella was the culprit”. As Gwendolyn “Doll” lies in and out of consciousness she is left trying to comprehend how her sister Evelyn could commit so evil an act. Why would she want to destroy their entire
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Molly
Nov 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed The Majesties by Tiffany Tsao. It's the story of two Chinese-Indonesian sisters, Gwendolyn and Estella, and at the very start of the book we learn Estella has poisoned their entire family. The rest of the book goes on to recount what happened that lead to the poisoning.

The book has been dubbed a "Crazy Rich Asians" meets Gillian Flynn. Some of the lavish descriptions in the beginning of the book had a Candice Bushnell/Sex and the City season 1 vibe to me, which I liked. As the story
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Smileitsjoy (JoyMelody)
I was extremely excited to read this book and I am happy I was able to get my hands on it via Netgalley; unfortunately, I was let down.
the story/plot of this book is really intriguing but it gets lost in quite a bit of the writing.
Tsao is a beautiful writer. the way she transitions from present to past is amazing but at the same time it is also too much.

I think this book had so much potential but there was actually overdevelopment of characters that were not central to the story and
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Ilene Harris
Oct 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
“The Majesties”. Can you imagine going to a birthday party honoring the grandfather of an extremely wealthy Chinese-Indonesia family, when 3 thousand of the guests are poisoned, but only Gwendolyn, a granddaughter, is the sole survivor of her sister Estella’s poisoning of their whole clan? While in a coma she is able to think back how this could have happened and why? What a great thriller so many secrets! Thank you AtriaBooks for this great giveaway.
Jennifer


Thanks to netgalley and Simon & Schuster Canada for allowing me to read this book.
yanzbanz
I really wanted to like this book because I’m Indonesian and was hoping to relate to SOME of it. But I was also expecting the “disquieting thriller” that was going to make my “fingers veer perilously close to bearing paper cuts, so feverishly will [I] be turning its pages”, as it was billed to be. Instead, I wasn’t “thrilled”, and felt the story provided a lot of unnecessary details (okay, we get it. They’re RICH.), and shifted back and forth between flashback and present in ways I sometimes ...more
Lis
Aug 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved this book

This book is a page turner. Once i started i couldn't stop reading. The story of two Chinese-Indonesian sisters from a very wealthy family, the book is essentially a mystery. Starting with a mass murder and working backwards, the story takes you through the lives of the sisters as they discover terrible things about those around them and themselves. It's beautifully written and has some wonderfully novel ideas (like Bagatelle, which is fascinating on its own). If you like
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Ashley
Sep 05, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well, that was weird.
Michael Livingston
Gripping, strange and very, very dark - this is a surprising and engaging book about privilege, shitty families and revenge.
Vannessa
Oct 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
A well crafted plot. Disclosure: the author is a personal friend. Through this family tale set in Jakarta, LA, Berkeley and a host of other settings, this is like a Gothic version of Crazy Rich Asians. Tiffany also captures many of the contradictions, the fears, the lack of acceptance, the oppression against the Indonesian Chinese in Indonesia. She also hints at the class differences within that community. I found it hard to sympathize with most of the characters in the book, which is perhaps ...more
Bee
Nov 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is the kind of book that I can see readers inhaling in a single sitting. The opening begins with Gwendolyn, who is in a coma, trying to figure out why her sister Estella poisoned three hundred people, including Gwendolyn and the rest of the Sulinado family. It’s an interesting mystery that made this book hard to put down, and Tsao plots the story so that events jump through different time periods in the sisters’ lives which intensifies the suspense and made the book hard to put down.

While
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BookwormishMe
Nov 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Gwendolyn, or Doll, shares with us her time in a coma after her sister Estella poisons her entire family and friends at a party for their Opa, or grandfather, who is suffering from Alzheimers. Gwendolyn is the only surviving member of this tragedy. While she is hospitalized, her body can’t function but her mind is active trying to retrace what possibly could have happened to cause her sister to commit such a crime.

The family is Indonesian, of Chinese descent, and extraordinarily wealthy by any
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Theresa
Dec 07, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: netgalley, trauma
Thank you, Netgalley and Atria for sending me a digital ARC, in exchange for an honest review.

Before I begin, let's take a moment to marvel at that beautiful, eye-catching cover. Ahh. What a sight!

I wish I could say "The Majesties" was just as beautiful and riveting as the outside but unfortunately, this book was a disjointed mess. I'm kind of a stickler when it comes to a certain writing style. I found the descriptive imagery and dialogue to be forced, awkward, and mundane. Almost every
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Bee
Nov 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the kind of book that I can see readers inhaling in a single sitting. The opening begins with Gwendolyn, who is in a coma, trying to figure out why her sister Estella poisoned three hundred people, including Gwendolyn and the rest of the Sulinado family. It’s an interesting mystery that made this book hard to put down, and Tsao plots the story so that events jump through different time periods in the sisters’ lives which intensifies the suspense and made the book hard to put down.

While
...more
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Tiffany Tsao is the author of The Majesties and the Oddfits fantasy series.

She also translates Indonesian fiction and poetry into English.

She received her Ph.D. in English from UC-Berkeley in 2009 and now lives in Sydney, Australia with her spouse and two offspring.
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