CRAZY RICH ASIANS! The book was hilarious. I was so glad that they didn't cast Tilda Swinton to play one of the lead roles. Not all movies make for great crossword feature entries, but this one had mass popular appeal, bringing in the megabucks. NYT solvers should have at least heard of it.
Solid craftsmanship, especially for a debut. Impressive that I hit barely a dab of crossword glue anywhere. I love this careful approach, no trace of the all-too-common "good enough is good enough" attitude I see in newer constructors. Way to go, Wyna!
Fun connection between T NUTS and T SLOT, too. Amusing to this mechanical engineer who's used many T NUTS in his lifetime.
Some good color: CATFISHES, FOSSILIZE, OOPS SORRY, and the highlight, WIN AT LIFE.
I would have liked more jazz overall, though. When you feature a 15-letter entry, you run the risk of 1.) not having many other long slots, and 2.) not using the ones you have to their fullest potential. INSANELY takes up one of those precious 8-letter slots for example, and it doesn't do much for me. SALSA DIP, too — I eat a lot of salsa, some dip, but SALSA DIP, not so much.
Sometimes in these cases, the mid-length fill can help. BROTOX is a funny asset, THE RIO is good too. MOSTEST is amusing, ALL PROS solid. WOODMEN ... meh.
As Wyna, Erik, Will all mentioned, there was so much separation, three mini-puzzles barely connected. No bueno; made for a choppy solve in which I got stuck in each of the three sections. It's frustrating to dead-end so many times like that. I'm glad that Will let it slide for this debut, but I'd be just as happy if he put the kibosh on it for the future.
Overall though, impressive debut. Looking forward to seeing how much juice Wyna can pack into her next one.