October 2006: Kafka in Bronteland has been awarded the Reform Judaism Prize for Jewish Literature 2006. The $5,000 prize has previously been awarded to Dara Horn, David Bezmozgis and Jonathan Rosen. The judges stated: "Every story in Tamar Yellin's KAFKA IN BRONTELAND closes with the decisive, revelatory resonance that marks the best examples of this literary form."

For the full press release, see

October 2006: The Genizah at the House of Shepher has been awarded the Ribalow Prize for Jewish Literature 2006. The award, presented annually by Hadassah Magazine, the largest circulation Jewish publication in the U.S., honours an author who has created an outstanding work of fiction on a Jewish theme. Past winners have included Lore Segal, Anne Roiphe, Louis Begley and Aharon Appelfeld. The panel of judges included Elie Wiesel, Jonathan Freedman and Jenna Blum. The prize will be awarded on December 12th in New York.

July 2006   The Genizah at the House of Shepher is a finalist for the Ribalow Literary Prize.

June 2006:  Tamar Yellin has been featured by national UK newspaper The Jewish Chronicle as one of five new British Jewish novelists to watch. Publisher and bookseller Michael Joseph says: "Her writing is assured, professional and profound. For me she's got a kind of Vermeer pitch to her work, just a quiet quality. This novel is beautifully crafted and combines all sorts of mythic and mundane themes and ideas in a very assured way." 

May 2006 : Kafka in Bronteland receives an enthusiastic review from Bradford's Telegraph and Argus: "Yellin's dual heritage gives her a voice that is quite often spiritual but grounded in no-nonsense Yorkshireness, and her characters, while often quirky, are always believable and the reader engages with them almost immediately." For the full review see

April 2006: A glowing review of 'Kafka in Bronteland' has appeared in The Guardian, describing "Tamar Yellin [as] ... a writer of rare distinction."

'Kafka in Bronteland' has been longlisted for the Frank O'Connor International Short Story Award, the largest prize for an English language short story collection.

March 2006: The Genizah at the House of Shepher has been shortlisted for the Wingate Prize for fiction, alongside novels by Michael Arditti, Imre Kertesz and Jean Molla. Previous winners of the prize include Amos Oz, David Grossman, W. G. Sebald, Howard Jacobson and Zadie Smith. The winner will be announced on 3rd May.

February 2006: Reviews of Kafka in Bronteland have appeared in The Independent, the Times Literary Supplement ("Redolent and suggestive, Tamar Yellin's stories ... all share a dense ambition, layered with displacement, loss and yearning"), and The Christian Science Monitor. Library Journal says: "Yellin writes beautifully and with great insight... This masterly collection... is a tremendous success. Strongly recommended."

January 2006: A major review of 'The Genizah at the House of Shepher' appears in the English language edition of Israeli newspaper Ha'Aretz: "An intently observed, fluent and inventive work, The Genizah at the House of Shepher genuinely deserves the epithet 'a multi-layered work.' ... Yellin still does not lose touch with the array of characters she has built and whose lives she describes with care and illuminating detail. Due to considerations of populism and publishing economics, this book is unlikely to garner even a tiny percentage of the marketing bonanza enjoyed by The Da Vinci Code, but it merits far more than a niche readership." For the full text of the article, click here.

January 2006: The first review of 'Kafka in Bronteland and other stories' in ALA Booklist describes the stories as 'haunting.' "The people in them are strangely familiar in their otherness."

November 2005: 'Kafka in Bronteland and other stories' is due to appear from the Toby Press in April 2006. For further details please see the Toby Press online catalogue. The book can also be pre-ordered through Amazon here or from Amazon UK here.

Tamar Yellin will be taking part in a literary evening alongside award-winning Palestinian writer Samir El Youssef (co-author, with Etgar Keret, of 'Gaza Blues')at Finchley Progressive Synagogue on Sunday 27th November 2005 at 7:30 p.m. For contact and location details please see the synagogue website at

October 2005: A profile of Tamar Yellin and the writing of 'The Genizah at the House of Shepher' appears in the current edition of national UK publication 'Writers' News.'

September 5th 2005: An in-depth review from Gabriella Elias-Bachrach in The Jerusalem Report: "The vibrant descriptions are based on a subtle interspersing of Jewish texts, bringing together midrash (allegory) and rabbinic quotes, Biblical verses, liturgical expressions, sleights of familiar phrases and passages. And indeed, the book has the feel, at times, of the rabbinical writings, with their eclectic mix of fact and metaphor, truth and wish... It is the interplay of the familiar and the ought-to-be-familiar, the modern and the ancient, the parent and the child, the choice and the chance, the real and the fantastic, that give this novel its power and its fascination."

August 2005: The Midwest Book Review says of the novel: "As much a parable of the transformations in Jerusalem over a hundred and thirty years as it is the story of one woman's struggle for identity and search for answers, The Genizah At The House Of Shepher is a deeply enthralling narrative of epic spiritual proportions."

June 22nd 2005: A reading and talk about 'The Genizah at the House of Shepher' will take place at 2pm at Thornton Library, Bradford, as part of Bradford Festival. For further details see

May 23rd 2005: Tamar reads from and talks about the novel at Shomrei Torah Synagogue, Tallahassee. A background article appears in the Tallahassee Democrat

May 7th 2005: An appreciative review appears from David Barnett in Bradford's Telegraph and Argus: "The writing is superb... The Genizah at the House of Shepher deserves to scoop a literary award or two, but more importantly it deserves a wide readership."

April 2005: An interview/background article appears in the Yorkshire Post.

May 2005: Major US trade journal Bookpage celebrates The Genizah at the House of Shepher as a "stunning book" with "an inexhaustible richness."

April, 2005: A background article with photographs appears in the Spring issue of the Jewish Quarterly alongside an extract from The Genizah at the House of Shepher.

February 25th 2005:, the English edition of Yediot Aharonot, has lavishly praised The Genizah at the House of Shepher, comparing it to bestseller The Da Vinci Code: "A Jewish-style Da Vinci Code saga... Rich in fascinating detail, typical wit and humour.",7340,L-3018521,00.html

March 1st 2005: Major US trade journal Booklist has awarded The Genizah at the House of Shepher a starred review: "Impossible to put down... The story of the codex and the Shepher family history are more than enough to pull this novel through with beauty, deep love, and a timelessness that will likely make it a classic."

February 15th 2005: The Genizah at the House of Shepher has been praised by Library Journal: "Filled with myth, mystery, and history, this novel gives the flavor of Jerusalem neighborhoods through the modern era. Recommended."

February 7th 2005: The Genizah at the House of Shepher has received a highly appreciative review from the leading American book trade journal, Publisher's Weekly. The review reads in part: 'The history of the family Shepher is a "record of theft, domestic discord, mutual blame-laying and bad luck." Despite that—or perhaps because of it—this British author’s debut novel is warm and engrossing, rich with historical detail and unmet yearning... More than anything, this wide-ranging novel is a meditation on the power of the Holy City, able to restore or shake the faith of whoever enters. As Shulamit notes, "Of all the cities of the world Jerusalem has one of the shabbiest gates of arrival, and coming or going one is greeted by graves."'

January 22nd 2005: An interview with Tamar Yellin, conducted by Zoran Zivkovic, is now up at Fantastic Metropolis alongside an extract from The Genizah at the House of Shepher and Yellin's Read and Appreciated 2004.

January 15th 2005: The Genizah at the House of Shepher has been praised in Kirkus Reviews, one of the leading American library reviews, which describes it as "A warmly portrayed, densely researched fictional history of a scattered Jewish clan migrated to Jerusalem... a fascinating, labyrinthine journey, joined to the modern-day suspense...Cohesively combines the epic and personal sense of sorrow and nostalgia rooted in home."

A background article about the inspiration behind The Genizah at the House of Shepher is now up on the Toby Press website at

The Genizah at the House of Shepher is due to appear in March 2005 from The Toby Press.

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