Study Guide

Bernard Tai in Crazy Rich Asians

By Kevin Kwan

Bernard Tai

Carol Tai warns us, fairly early in the novel, that her son is a spoiled brat. She is not wrong. Bernard gives us a glimpse into what it may have been like to watch Eddie Cheng grow up. Bernard is entirely about himself and living a life of excess.

Because his father is the largest minority shareholder in the Khoo Organization, Bernard arranges a bachelor party for Colin that really is just a bunch of things Bernard wants to do…and really they seem more like things he wants to do because it looks cool to do them: get into a secret dogfighting arena (we'll spare the gory details here); make a scene in a hotel lobby to get VVIP gambling suites; objectify women in multiple different ways; oh, and, do nothing to make sure the guest of honor is actually having a good time.

While Bernard offers little more than a foil to Colin and his closer friends who could care less about such extravagance, he does serve as bait within Oliver T'sien's plan to get Kitty Pong away from Alistair. And it works: both Bernard and Kitty are shallow and self-centered enough to be attracted to the other for their money and looks. Yuck.