Congratulations to the 2013 AJL Award Winners!
The Association of Jewish Libraries is proud to announce the winners of both the Sydney Taylor Manuscript Award and the Judaica Reference & Bibliography Awards. The Sydney Taylor Manuscript Award is given to the year's best fiction manuscript appropriate for readers ages 8-11 and written by an unpublished children's author. The book must be a work of fiction in English with Jewish content for readers aged 8 to 11 years, both Jewish and non-Jewish.
The AJL Judaica Reference Award, funded by Dr. Greta Silver of New York City, was established to encourage the publication of outstanding Judaica reference books. The AJL Judaica Bibliography Award, funded by Eric Chaim Kline of Los Angeles, was established to encourage the publication of outstanding Judaica bibliographies. The winners of all AJL’s literary awards, including the Sydney Taylor Book Awards announced earlier this year, will be honored at a banquet during the 48th annual conference of the Association of Jewish Libraries, June 16-19 in Houston, Texas.
Sydney Taylor Manuscript Award
Karen Propp, the author of “Freestyle,” will receive the 2013 Sydney Taylor Manuscript Award at the AJL Conference in June. Propp successfully captured the spirit of the award in her historical fiction story set in Vienna before World War II.
“Freestyle” is based on the true story of champion swimmer Judith Deutsch and the Viennese Hakoah swim team of the 1930s. Despite being selected by Austria to swim in the 1936 Berlin, Deutsch and her teammates boycotted the Olympics to protest the treatment of Jews in Nazi Germany.
Karen Propp is an author, editor and writing coach based in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She earned her Ph.D. in British and American Literature at the University of Utah. She currently coaches international MBA students at Harvard in case-based essay writing methods and also writes proposals for The Institute of Healthcare Improvement, based in Cambridge.
She has written (and ghost written) several books on emotional and physical healthcare topics, as well as a wide variety of articles for publications including The Jewish Forward and Lilith Magazine. In addition to a cash award, Propp will have her manuscript read by a professional literary agent.
AJL Reference and Bibliography Awards
The AJL Awards Committee has reviewed 2012 reference and bibliography publications and are happy to announce Yaakov Sussman's Otsar kitve-ha-yad ha-Talmudiyim as the winner for the AJL Judaica Bibliography Award. The book includes almost 9,000 fragments/manuscripts from all over the world of the Mishna, Tosefta, Babylonian Talmud, Palestinian Talmud and Rabbi Isaac Alfasi (RIF). It is an essential work for any scholar of rabbinic literature.
The committee did not select a winner for the AJL Judaica Reference Award. Dr. Ardashir Babaknia's Hulukast was given an Honorable Mention in the Reference category. This four volume set makes information about the Holocaust accessible for the first time to Persian language readers. The committee found the work to be significant and important and looks forward to broad distribution.