It’s awards season again and the announcement just came in of the most coveted awards in the Jewish calendar year: The Jewish Book Council’s Jewish Book Awards. (Jewish. Book. Jewish Book. Just wanted to say those words a few more times.)

Rabbi Joseph Telushkin (winner, Jewish Book of the Year for “A Code of Jewish Ethics”) and sixteen other winners in as many categories will be honored at a gala awards ceremony at the 56th Annual National Jewish Book Awards, to be held at the Center for Jewish History in Manhattan, located at 15 W16th Street, on March 6th. As in years past, the awards ceremony will be free and open to the public and acclaimed authors Ari L. Goldman and Samuel G. Freedman will serve as masters of ceremonies.

And yes, there are women who are being honored. Dara Horn won for her book, “The World to Come.”

Rumor has it that Dolce & Gabbana are slated to dress Ms. Horn, while the emcees will be wearing Armani; the pre-awards red carpet ceremonies are to be hosted by Kathy Griffin.

About the author

Esther Kustanowitz

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  • Wow! Some great books! I pre-ordered this one, looks interesting: Undercurrents of Jewish Prayer (Littman Library of Jewish Civilization).

    An old book, but worth the read, it has reshaped my view of messianism: Sacred Fragments: Recovering Theology for the Modern Jew. I recommend it.

  • Deat Esther,

    I wanted to make sure that you were aware of another Jewish Book Council Award, the Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature. Please check out our website ( for information about the prize, including the press release naming the finalists for this year. The prize awards and emerging jewish writer $100,000! The finalists this year are, Naomi Alderman (Disobedience), Amir Gutfreund (Our Holocaust), Yael Hedaya (Accidents), Michael Lavigne (Not Me), and Tamar Yellin (The Genizah and the House of the Shepher). Please feel free to call or email me if you have any questions ([email protected] or 212-201-2920).

  • Thanks, Naomi…I hope our readers will always check out new Jewish books, regardless of awards status…

  • I completely agree, Esther. Check out for information about all of the Jewish Book Council services and programs, including a magazine, Jewish Book World, which features hundreds of reviews and articles about new books of Jewish interest, information about a new birhright israel trip that brings yound Jewish adults in contact with the Israeli Literary and Journalistic scene, as well as information about our other programs and services that promote books of Jewish interest!

  • Of course, the endless cycle of what makes it a Jewish book. Is it just having a Jewish author? Must it include Jewish characters? A Jewish lesson?

    If it just takes a Jewish author, I’m gonna pimp my friend’s first novel. Three Fallen Women by Amy Guth. for all the info.

    (Although, in reality, I taught Jewish Storytelling to a group of 5-8th grade boys and we had a checklist of four things that made it a Jewish story. My notes are at home, but it included Jewish Characters and Jewish Time. The four points were pulled from the wonderful book Because G-d Loves Stories, a collection of Jewish stories.

    er…. rambling.

  • Ah yes…what does make a book of Jewish interest…the million dollar question. Each of our programs has a different requirement. For the National Jewish Book Awards: book of Jewish theme, Jewish Book Word: Jewish theme or Jewish feel, Jewish Book NETWORK: Jewish author … not necc. Jewish content, Sami Rohr Prize: Jewish author and a Jewish theme…
    Leah..and others..should send review copies of their books of Jewish interest (that might fall into one of the above programs/categories) to the Jewish Book Council/520 8th Avenue, 4th Floor/New York, NY 10018 (3 copies) for possible review in Jewish Book World and also as a resource for the other programs and awards! Check the website for details about each of the programs!