Nobel Prize (and National Book Award finalists)
Orhan Pamuk has won the 2006 Nobel Prize for Literature. A Turkish native, he has received criticism from his homeland (earlier this year, he was involved in a court case after he spoke about the killing of Kurds and Armenians), but the Swedish Committee commented, "in the quest for the melancholic soul of his native city [he] has discovered new symbols for the clash and interlacing of cultures." Last year, as I'm sure you remember, the Nobel Prize went to Harold Pinter. If you haven't seen a production of "Betrayal" (or at least read it), then hurry along now.