Five finalists have been selected for the new $100,000 Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature:
The winner will be announced in mid-March. The Prize is the largest-ever Jewish literary prize given, and is one of the largest literary prizes in the nation [the US that is].
Sami Rohr's children and grandchildren established this award to celebrate Mr. Rohr's 80th birthday -- and to honor his lifelong love of Jewish writing.
Each year, a prize of $100,000 will be presented to an emerging writer whose work, of exceptional literary merit, stimulates an interest in themes of Jewish concern.
"One of the goals we wish to accomplish through the creation of the Sami Rohr Prize is the establishment of an elite corps of writers of Jewish literature from all over the world," said Geri Gindea, director of the program, which operates as a department of the Jewish Book Council. "This Prize will also help bring to light the emerging voices of today's Jewish writers, their own journeys, and their own unique experiences living as Jews in the modern world."
The five finalists are:
Naomi Alderman of England for Disobedience;
Amir Gutfreund of Israel for Our Holocaust;
Yael Hedaya of Israel for Accidents;
Michael Lavigne of San Francisco, CA, for Not Me;
and Tamar Yellin of England for The Genizah at the House of Shepher.