Congratulations to Hillel Halkin, whose Nextbook Press biography of Yehuda Halevi just took home the 2010 National Jewish Book Award in the Sephardic Culture category (it was also a finalist in Scholarship). A good reminder that although the medieval Halevi is frequently known as “the poet laureate of the Jewish people,” he spent essentially his whole life in what is now Spain.
Congratulations also to Friend-of-The-Scroll Gal Beckerman, whose When They Come For Us, We’ll Be Gone, a history of the movement to liberate Soviet Jewry, was named Jewish Book of the Year. Adam Kirsch gave the book a rave in November. And Beckerman talked to me last month about Henry Kissinger’s recently revealed “death camp” comments and the former secretary of state’s role in (not) freeing the Jews of the U.S.S.R.
Notable awards also went to Cynthia Ozick (Lifetime Achievement), David Grossman’s To the End of the Land (Fiction), and others.