United by chance during their formative years at Barnard College, three women come of age in New York Minna Grant, Maud Noon, and Liz Becker are assigned as roommates during their freshman year at Barnard. The daughter of Communist parents, Liz makes a name for herself as a photographer. Minna, bright and pretty, is an avid swimmer with a promising academic future. And Maud, an unprepossessing scholarship student, catches the eye of the handsomest boy at Columbia and rises to fame as a poet. As the decades pass, each woman lives out her own individual passions, tragedies, and destiny. Grumbach's courageous and nuanced tale of female friendship, coming of age, and New York across the decades is a must-read.