Darley, the eldest daughter in the well-connected, carefully-guarded, old money Stockton family, followed her heart, trading her job and her inheritance for motherhood, sacrificing more of herself than she ever intended; Sasha, a middle-class New England girl, has married into the Brooklyn Heights family, and finds herself cast as the arriviste outsider, wondering how she might ever understand their WASP-y rites and rituals; and Georgiana, the baby of the family, has fallen in love with someone she can’t (and really shouldn’t) have, and must confront the kind of person she wants to be.
Rife with the indulgent pleasures of life among New York’s one percenters, Pineapple Street is a smart, escapist novel that sparkles with wit. Full of recognizable, loveable if fallible characters (and a few appalling ones!), it’s about the peculiar unknowability of someone else’s family, the miles between the haves and have-nots and everything in between, and the insanity of first love—all wrapped in a story that is a sheer delight of a read.
Pineapple Street is a fun novel about drama, secrets and wealth, all set among the top 1% who have so much wealth they’ll never need to worry about money. However, this doesn’t mean they don’t have their own problems to contend with…
The novel centres around the Stockton family, who are from ‘old money’. It focuses on three women in particular – Georgina, the youngest daughter; Darley, the eldest; and Sasha, who married into the family but has never felt quite at home. We meet their partners, parents, and friends as we peek into their hugely privileged lives.
It took me a while to get into this novel, no doubt partly because these characters are not the sort of people I immediately warm to or find myself rooting for. Most (though perhaps not all) are rich, spoilt and selfish and I rolled my eyes on many occasions reading this book – which I imagine Jenny Jackson fully intended the reader to do. However, I did ultimately find myself intrigued by these characters because their lives are so very different to my own, and I think that is the main draw in this book: pure escapism. You’re thrown into this world where priorities and worries are very different to the rest of the population. Though they might be irritating at times, you can sort of forget about everything else whilst reading Pineapple Street.
Though some of the characters are likeable enough, all had their faults and issues, but for me this made them feel more believable. The book is very character-driven and as we follow these characters we see certain family members take stock of their lives. It took quite a while for the characters to feel anything other than mostly spoilt, rich people who have no idea how lucky they are, but eventually they do seem to develop and become more layered, intriguing people.
The ending felt a little ‘too much‘ considering how some of the characters started out in the novel, but nevertheless Pineapple Street was entertaining and fun, with some more serious topics addressed too. I’d recommend it if you fancy something escapist and easy to read.
My rating: 3/5
Many thanks to the publisher for providing a copy of this book on which I chose to write an honest review.