The Jewish Book Council has announced the winner of the $100,000 2011 Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature: Austin Ratner for his debut novel The Jump Artist, which was based on the true story of Philippe Halsman, who knew Hitler, Freud - and put Marilyn Monroe on the cover of Life magazine.
Joseph Skibell was the runner up and winner of the $25,000 prize for his novel A Curable Romantic. The other finalists: Allison Amend (Stations West); Nadia Kalman (The Cosmopolitans) and Julie Orringer (The Invisible Bridge).
The Sami Rohr Prize honors the contribution of contemporary writers in the exploration and transmission of Jewish values. Nonfiction and fiction are considered in alternate years.