Pineapple Street, one of 2023’s buzzy books, has an enticing premise: the trials and tribulations of a rich family in Brooklyn Heights. One daughter, Darley, is happily married but keeping a secret from her family. One daughter, Georgiana, is single but involved with an unavailable man. And the son, Cord, is married to Sasha, a woman the sisters call the Gold Digger because she wouldn’t sign a prenup. Pineapple Street is about their family dynamics and social interactions over the course of a year.
Why I picked it up: The buzz and the cover.
Pineapple Street is well-written and an easy, engrossing read, but it is ultimately pretty unsatisfying. The characters are for the most part pretty unlikeable, with one-percenter problems that are hard to sympathize with. Should Georgiana give away all of her millions? How can Sasha get rid of all of the crap the house her in-laws are letting her and Cord live in? Should Darley feel bad that she doesn’t use her education and stays home to raise her children? Though each woman has some moments of clarity and objectivity throughout the novel, they don’t really change much. The men are mostly amiable but boring. Not much happens in this character-driven story set in a very rarefied world.
I am not sad that I read Pineapple Street, but there are a lot of other books out there that are undoubtedly more worthwhile and have more to say about our complex and troubling world.
Pineapple Street was the 15th book of 2023 and satisfies the Book With An Amazing Cover category of the 2023 EDWITB Reading Challenge.