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Jenny Jackson Books In Order

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Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Pineapple Street (2023)Description / Buy at Amazon

Jenny Jackson
Jenny Jackson is an executive editor and vice president of Alfred A. Knopf. She is a graduate of the Columbia Publishing Course and Williams College.

She joined Vintage, Knopf’s paperback arm back in 2002, fresh out of Columbia Publishing Course and Williams, and later segued into Knopf’s hardcover shop nine years later. She established herself as a literary hitmaker with a track record of fostering best selling authors that straddle the line between commercial and literary fiction, and nonfiction on occasion too.

With this vociferously loyal roster which includes Esmeralda Santiago, Emily St. John Mandel, Gabrielle Zevin, Peter Heller, Katherine Heiny, Jennifer Close, and Selma Blair (the actress). She is also considered to be extraordinarily adept at helping promote and market her authors.

She was almost as surprised as the rest of the publishing world that she had written a novel. Like numerous other people, she had felt unsettled and isolated as the pandemic changed the whole world and the way we lived. Jackson wrote the novel in place of being able to gossip and talk with others with what had appeared to have become a vanished world, having been taken far away from her usual epicenter among this younger cohort spanning the swath of literary agencies and publishing houses.

For the first six months of the pandemic, she and Torrey Liddell (her husband and a partner at Surreel Films, the production company) and their two young kids lived with his parents at the country house in Sharon, Connecticut. This was in a house not too far from Hotchkiss, where Liddell and his dad both went to boarding school. The complications of marrying into somebody else’s family drive her novel’s fish-out-of-gene-pool plot.

Editing the book was an interesting process for Jenny. Because she thought she’d be different, having edited 20 novels by that point and she knows that criticism is only about the work, and never personal. It’s a good thing she’s got thick skin and is above it all.

What can happen sometimes, and she’s been on the editor side of this (when you’ve got multiple editors working together), you wind up with a monster of an editorial letter. One landed in her inbox that clocked in at 18 pages. So she printed it, skimmed it one time, set it down, and didn’t look at it for two weeks. It troubled her. She wondered if they didn’t like the book, then why buy it?

Jenny wrote the book in only four months after reading The New York Times article “The Rich Kids Who Want to Tear Down Capitalism”. The piece is about millennial one-percenters’ distinctly ambivalent relationship with the millions of dollars they stand to inherit. This is a conundrum that visits the Stocktons in “Pineapple Street” when Georgiana grows a social conscience and decides to give her trust fund away.

Georgiana, who’s like the youngest millennial-slash Gen Zer, is the one that is the most in touch with her feelings, the one that has the first moral reckoning and pretty much drags everybody else with her. On the other hand, you have geriatric millennials on the cusp of Gen X, are oblivious when it suits them.

It’s for this reason that Jenny purposefully made a ten year age gap between Georgiana and her older siblings. Shoulda seen her sitting there with paper and a pen, going okay she was born in this year. So it was an accidental baby that came late in the marriage.

It was something she wanted to do because Jenny feels like she herself grew up with a really unexamined relationship with money. She grew up watching things like “MTV Cribs”, “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous”, “90210”, and “Clueless”. And Jenny thought her relationship with money was that money seemed cool and she’d like to make some.

Then you see people that are now in their mid to late twenties and they grew up voting for Bernie, watching Occupy Wall Street, supporting AOC, and grew up watching the income gap getting bigger and bigger to a point that it is totally unsustainable. So they’ve developed a much more active and questioning relationship with money. They’re the ones that say inherited wealth isn’t just, and it cannot continue this way.

“Pineapple Street” is the first stand alone novel and was released in 2023. A deliciously funny, and sharply observed novel of love, family, and class, this zeitgeisty debut follows three women in a wealthy Brooklyn family.

Sasha, a middle class New England girl, married into the Brooklyn Heights family, and finds she’s cast as the arriviste outsider. Darley, the oldest daughter in the well connected old money Stockton family, followed her own heart, trading her inheritance and her job for motherhood yet gave up way too much in the process. Then there’s Georgiana, who is the baby of the family, and she has fallen in love with somebody that she cannot have, and has to figure out what sort of person she wants to be.

Rife with the indulgent pleasures of life among the one percenters of New York, this is an escapist and smart novel that sparkles with wit. Full of loveable, recognizable, if fallible, characters, this novel is about the peculiar unknowability of somebody else’s family, the miles between the haves and the have nots, and the insanity of first love, all of which wrapped in a story that is a sheer delight.

This is a captivating story which is masterfully constructed, crisply written, and vividly peopled. It is hilarious, big hearted, pure reading pleasure, and filled with emotional truths. This is the sort of novel that you hope never ends. Readers found this to be a delight from beginning to end, and is a cancel all your plans type of book, since it’s so addicting, affecting, and filled with delicious details, Jenny allows you into this outrageous world of generational privilege and wealth through three fallible yet loveable ladies navigating the complexities of life on the inside.

Readers’s favorite part of the novel was the heart. All of the characters screw up, yet they still make amends, they try. And they keep on trying.

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One Response to “Jenny Jackson”

  1. Liz Lakoseljac: 10 months ago

    Hello – I am thoroughly enjoying Pineapple Street and I am around half way through the book when I found a typo and thought you may want to know. It’s on page 137 and it says –
    “The heathy one where you make everyone eat rice and broccoli and salad because you feel so gross from eating pizza and donuts all weekend” (137).
    I assume you meant “healthy” with an “L”. Just wanted to let you know.

    Again – I am really enjoying the book and was disappointed that I missed her in-person appearance at the Ipswich library, which is very close to where I live. Hopefully, I’ll catch her on her next tour!

    Liz Lakoseljac

    Reply

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