The Jewish Book Council announced winners of the 2018 National Jewish Book Awards, now in its 68th year. The winners include the Everett Family Foundation Book of the Year recipients Beate and Serge Klarsfeld for their work Hunting the Truth (Farrar, Straus and Giroux).
This year, JBC awarded its the inaugural Biography Award in Memory of Sara Berenson Stone. Mrs. Stone was a devoted philanthropist and voracious reader who moved to New Orleans in 1935, where she began her 80-year-long advocacy for Jewish causes. The first winner of the prize is Ariel Burger for his work Witness: Lessons from Elie Wiesel’s Classroom (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt).
Prime Minister Ehud Barak wins the Krauss Family Autobiography/Memoir Award for My Country, My Life: Fighting for Israel, Searching for Peace (St. Martin’s Press) and the Barbara Dobkin Award in Women’s Studies is given to Never a Native by Alice Shalvi (Halban Publishers).
Three novels take top fiction honors. The winners include The Last Watchman of Old Cairo (Spiegel & Grau), Michael David Lukas’ first National Jewish Book Award. Ronald Balson’s The Girl From Berlin (St. Martin’s Press) is the recipient of The Miller Family Book Club Award in Memory of Helen Dunn Weinstein and June Keit Miller. Bram Presser’s The Book of Dirt (Text Publishing) is the winner of the Goldberg Prize for debut fiction.
The winner of the 2018 Holocaust Award in Memory of Ernest W. Michel is Omer Bartov for his work Anatomy of a Genocide: The Life and Death of a Town Called Buczacz (Simon & Schuster) and Ronen Bergman is the winner of the Gerrard and Ella Berman Memorial Award for history for his book Rise and Kill First: The Secret History of Israel’s Targeted Assassinations (Random House).
Holy Moly Carry Me by Erika Meitner (BOA Editions) wins the Berru Award in Memory of Ruth and Bernie Weinflash in the poetry category.
This year, the Mentorship Award in Honor of Carolyn Starman Hessel goes to Susan Shapiro, bestselling author, award-winning writing professor, and journalist who has worked with over 25,000 students throughout her impressive career. This award recognizes her mentorship and support of Jewish authors, a number of whom have participated in the JBC network.
The American Jewish Studies Celebrate 350 Award goes to The New American Judaism: How Jews Practice Their Religion Today by Jack Wertheimer (Princeton University Press).
For a full list of winners and finalists, click here.