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Annals of Real Estate

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Joseph O'Neill's latest work of fiction for the New Yorker, "The Referees," tackles a very realistic problem: one man's struggle to secure letters of reference for a co-op purchase. It's poignant. It's unfair. It's glib. It's a little desperate. So true to life, right? O'Neill explains his inspiration: "The New York real-estate market is a realm of evil. ... I'm not sure what my story's message is, but I would certainly urge people to leave New York. That might bring down home prices for the rest of us." [NY]