‘Small Pieces’ longlisted for JQ Wingate Prize 2018

30th November 2017

Small Pieces by Joanne Limburg has been longlisted for the 2018 Jewish Quarterly Wingate Prize.

Joanne Limburg’s intensely honest account of coming to terms with her brother’s suicide was selected for this year’s 12-strong list, comprising four novels and eight works of non-fiction, covering three continents and spaning a time frame of almost a century.

Now in its 41st year, the annual prize, worth £4,000, is awarded to the best book, fiction or non-fiction, to translate the idea of Jewishness to the general reader.

Chair of judges Toby Lichtig says:

“We are delighted to have compiled what we believe is an invigorating, diverse and thought-provoking long list, transmitting a wide range of Jewish subjects. Each of these books is well worth reading for its own unique reasons: stylistic, thematic, emotional and intellectual.

Our list includes four novels, ranging from America to Britain to Israel, past and present. Historical studies include a new survey of the Holocaust and another of Adolf Hitler’s early years of infamy; fresh light is shed on Israel’s borders and demographics, Jewish mysticism and the often-fraught (and sometimes funny) vagaries of domestic life.

The Shoah, Israel and family are recurring leitmotifs – but if there’s one overriding theme it is identity: national, cultural and psychological; its contingency, construction and mutability, the borders it builds and wilfully traverses. The Jewish experience – with its long history, complex diaspora and vexed relationship with place – is perhaps particularly well-suited to current, often ugly debates about citizenship, migration and belonging. As such, this feels like a selection of literature for our time.”

The 2018 prize winner will be announced on February 15.