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Schwartz's 1989 coming-of-age novel snagged both the National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction and the PEN/Faulkner Award. For protagonist Audrey, her hometown of Brooklyn, NY, represents the suppressed world of her parents and her 1950s childhood. Though she was born with an eye impairment, it is not until she finally travels across the bridge to Manhattan to see a specialist that she truly grows up and is able to shuck off her past. Substitute any other outlying region of any other big city, and the story still works.