The setup for The Wangs vs. the World is so rich in conflict and pathos, it's hard to realize at first that it's a comedy ... Chang not only effortlessly juggles this crew of point-of-view characters, she imbues each of them with distinct voice of their own ... Chang tackles the issue of race from a fresh, playful, yet cutting perspective. Her book is unrelentingly fun, but it's also raw and profane — a story of fierce pride, fierce anger, and even fiercer love.
With mischievous, Dickensian glee, Chang's prose power-drives the appealingly dysfunctional family, now a disgrace to the wet dream of capitalism, through their postfall paces ... Chang's confident, broad-stroke, and go-for-broke style makes her fresh twist on the American immigrant saga one of 2016's must-reads ... You will laugh your ass off while learning a thing or two about buying into, and then having to bail on, the American dream. But mostly, you'll get to savor, thanks to a wildly innovative plot twist, the secret heart of this diabolical dramedy: how it's love, not money, that really makes the world, and all the people in it, go round.
Jade Chang is unendingly clever in her generous debut novel about the comedy of racial identity ... The teasing-but-loving dynamic of all three kids on the phone together illustrates Chang’s aptitude for writing dialogue and characters; as in the stand-up scene, she is at her finest when playing with the different expectations of an Asian audience and a white one ... It’s just too bad the end of the novel is such a mess. Unsatisfying resolutions for all of the Wang children feel forced when they are sent to the other end of the earth ... [a] compassionate and bright-eyed novel.