The Natan Fund Launches Second Annual Natan Book Award

The Natan Fund, a giving circle of young philanthropists supporting Jewish and Israeli social innovation, is now accepting applications for the 2014 Natan Book Award.

The Natan Book Award catalyzes new conversations about Jewish life. This groundbreaking new literary award supports the writing and distribution of a new nonfiction book on Jewish themes, with a total of $50,000 split between a cash award to the author and funds dedicated to a customized publicity and distribution strategy that leverages Natan’s networks across the Jewish, nonprofit and philanthropic communities. The aim of the award is to support a writer as he or she is creating an important new work, while also ensuring that broad and diverse audiences engage with the finished book in a substantive way.

The 2013 winner of the Natan Book Award was Ari Shavit’s instant New York Times bestseller, My Promised Land: The Triumph and Tragedy of Israel (Spiegel & Grau, 2013). “Natan has been an invaluable partner in helping new audiences engage with my book,” said Shavit. “Winning the Award put the book onto a whole new level even before I had finished it.”

Cindy Spiegel, Senior Vice President and Publisher at Spiegel & Grau (an imprint of Random House), agreed. “Working with Natan on My Promised Land has been collaborative, creative – even inspiring,” said Spiegel. “The ideas, connections and financial support they have offered have broadened the scope of the book’s publication and has given us access to communities we wouldn’t have reached without them.”

As part of the Award, Natan has commissioned a reader’s guide and facilitator trainings for groups and individuals using the book; is distributing hundreds of copies of the bound galleys and the finished book to Jewish and Israeli leaders and organizations; and is brokering organizational partnerships and speaking engagements for Shavit around North America, Israel, and the UK, including a tour of more than a dozen college campuses in partnership with the Israel Institute.

The Natan Book Award Committee is chaired by Franklin Foer and Jeffrey Goldberg, with David Brooks, Matthew Hiltzik, Simon Lipskar, Tali Rosenblatt-Cohen and Tali Farhadian Weinstein serving as members.

Submissions for the 2014 Natan Book Award are due January 31, 2014. Eligibility rules and application procedures can be found at