This novel involves several revolving stories related to a place more than a specific set of circumstances of plot. Brewster Place is a sort of government housing project equivalent to Linden Hills, the planned community of a later Gloria Naylor novel.
If you read Hidden Figures you already learned about the planned communities of the early 20th century and the ways in which race impacted those developments. If you’ve read Toni Morrison you know how those communities survived white onslaught, developed their own character and quirks, and became more desirable than the white communities in the same town.
The history of planned developments, whether they are government projects or neighborhoods, in the US is a deeply interesting, terrifying, saddening, and ultimately emblematic history of race, poverty, and class.
I recommend this article, obviously: https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2014/06/the-case-for-reparations/361631/
But also, The Turner House by Angela Flournoy
The Pruitt-Igoe Myth documentary.
Home and Sula and Paradise by Toni Morrison.
Hidden Figures and Linden Hills (Also by Gloria Naylor).
This novel more simply tells the story of various women who find themselves in a housing project, how they ended up there, and the lives they carved out for themselves as a result. It’s good writing, it’s sad and touching, and it’s an effective novel planned out on an almost architectural level. I didn’t grow up in government housing, but I live in a city currently that is trying to figure out what to do about the problems within these communities (from piss poor facilities to crime to pollution to concentrated issues in local schools but also how to make sure that when the buildings get torn down, the people who live there will still get to live there, and not just have their land gentrified out from under them).