St Francis College Literary Prize 2009
Aleksandar Hemon won the 2009 inaugural St. Francis College Literary Prize for his short-story collection, Love and Obstacles. The $50,000 award, presented at last night’s Gala Opening Party of the Brooklyn Book Festival, is among the most lucrative Literary prizes in the United States. The SFC jury includes authors Michael Chabon (The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay), National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction-winner Jonathan Lethem (Motherless Brooklyn), author and co-editor of The Believer magazine Heidi Julavits (The Uses of Enchantment: A Novel), author and professor at the MFA writing program at Columbia University Ben Marcus (Notable American Women) and New York Times bestselling author Ayelet Waldman (Bad Mother: A Chronicle of Maternal Crimes, Minor Calamities and Occasional Moments of Grace).
Aleksandar Hemon was raised in Sarajevo and lives in Chicago today. Love and Obstacles draws together the tale of a young man set to leave communist Sarajevo as the city reels from the Bosnian war. Hemon’s essay, If God Existed, He’d be a Solid Midfielder, which explores immigrant and expatriate communities in Chicago and the shared experience of sport, appears in Granta 108: ‘Chicago’.