Sold! ‘Schlumpy’ Molly Jong-Fast Drops $5 M. for Ritzy East Side Co-Op, Calls New Neighbors ‘Plankton’

Molly Jong-Fast paid $4.95 million on her apartment.

The 29-year-old novelist Molly Jong-Fast completely, entirely, totally adores the Upper East Side.

Ms. Jong-Fast, the only child of Erica Jong, who wrote the sexed-up 1973 feminist gem Fear of Flying, paid $4.95 million last month, city records show, for a four-bedroom co-op.

“Part of me feels that what I like about it is everyone here is a banker,” said Ms. Jong-Fast, who’s working on a novel, The Social Climber’s Handbook. “I feel like I don’t have to compete—what I do is so different, it’s not even comparable. I’d feel really bad if everyday I went to a coffee shop in Brooklyn and there were, like, five people on the New York Times best-seller list.”

She and her husband, CUNY professor Matthew Greenfield, a Shakespeare and Spenser expert, bought the apartment from David and Dana Luttway. (Ms. Luttway also has a famous New York mother, Congresswoman Nita Lowey.)

Ms. Jong-Fast grew up at One Gracie Square, with her mother and a boyfriend named Chip. “I don’t know what that co-op board was thinking. … He was a WASP from Darien who became a sort of wild crazy drug-addictive lunatic.” Then they moved to a hot-pink townhouse.: “A boyfriend of my mother’s said it looked like a bordello. It looked just awful, so hideous.”

Then the family moved to the Imperial House on East 69th Street, where her mother still lives. Later, when Ms. Jong-Fast was in her early 20’s, a grandpa (the other one was famous communist Howard Fast) bought her an apartment in the building. It had belonged to a woman who’d died there after a diabetic coma.

But she got married, moved away to Chelsea, and later came back uptown to a duplex. “I felt like I wanted to be closer to my parents,” she said. When asked about other neuroses, she said—no joke—a fear of flying. “Hilarious for everyone but me,” she deadpanned.

But Ms. Jong-Fast is pregnant with twins, so the stairs at that duplex became tiresome. With a corner master bedroom suite facing toward Central Park, will she be a neighborhood shopper? “I’m just not like that. I mean, I’m happy for those people. Quite frankly, they have to exist. It’s important for the ecosystem; it’s like plankton.”

Can a woman who calls herself and her family “schlumpy … messy and not classy,” be happy in a $5 million co-op? “It works for us because it’s so weird and counterintuitive,” she said.

The four-bedroom apartment came with flat-screen televisions, which the couple are tearing out, along with the wet bar, in order to make space for books. “Swear to God,” she said, “there are no bookshelves.”

Sold! ‘Schlumpy’ Molly Jong-Fast Drops $5 M. for Ritzy East Side Co-Op, Calls New Neighbors ‘Plankton’