Nicole Krauss

This article is about the author of The History of Love. For the author of The Nanny Diaries, see Nicola Kraus.
Nicole Krauss

Nicole Krauss at the
Miami Book Fair International 2011
Born (1974-08-18) August 18, 1974
Manhattan, New York City, United States
Occupation Novelist and short story writer
Language English
Nationality American
Ethnicity Jewish
Education Stanford University; Oxford University; Courtauld Institute
Literary movement Postmodernism
Notable works Man Walks Into a Room (2002)
The History of Love (2005)
Great House (2010)
Notable awards
Spouse Jonathan Safran Foer (m. 2004; div. 2014)
Children 2

Nicole Krauss (born August 18, 1974)[1][2] is an American author best known for her three novels Man Walks Into a Room (2002), The History of Love (2005) and Great House (2010). Her fiction has been published in The New Yorker, Harper's, Esquire, and Granta's Best American Novelists Under 40, and has been collected in Best American Short Stories 2003 and Best American Short Stories 2008. Her novels have been translated into 35 languages.[3] In 2010, she was selected as one of The New Yorker's "20 Under 40" writers to watch.[1] In 2011, Nicole Krauss won an award from the Anisfield-Wolf Book Awards for her novel Great House.[4]

Early life

Krauss, who grew up on Long Island,[5][6] was born in Manhattan, New York City[1] to a British Jewish mother and an American Jewish father, an engineer and orthopedic surgeon[7] who grew up partly in Israel.[8] Krauss's maternal grandparents were born in Germany and Ukraine and later immigrated to London. Her paternal grandparents were born in Hungary and Slonim, Belarus, met in Israel, and later immigrated to New York.[9] Many of these places are central to Krauss's 2005 novel, The History of Love, and the book is dedicated to her grandparents.[6]

Krauss, who started writing when she was a teenager,[10][11] wrote and published mainly poetry[11][12] until she began her first novel in 2001.

Krauss enrolled in Stanford University in 1992, and that fall she met Joseph Brodsky[5] who worked closely with her on her poetry over the next three years. He also introduced her to the work of writers such as Italo Calvino and Zbigniew Herbert. In 1999, three years after Brodsky died, Krauss produced a documentary about his work for BBC Radio 3.[13] She traveled to St. Petersburg where she stood in the "room and a half" where he grew up, made famous by his essay of that title. Krauss majored in English and graduated with honors, winning several undergraduate prizes for her poetry as well as the Dean's Award for academic achievement. She also curated a reading series with Fiona Maazel at the Russian Samovar, a restaurant in New York City co-founded by Roman Kaplan, Brodsky and Mikhail Baryshnikov.[14]

In 1996 Krauss was awarded a Marshall Scholarship and enrolled in a master's program at Oxford University[3] where she wrote a thesis on the American artist Joseph Cornell. During the second year of her scholarship she attended the Courtauld Institute in London,[3] where she received a master's in art history, specializing in 17th-century Dutch art and writing a thesis on Rembrandt.


In 2002, Krauss published her acclaimed[15][16] first novel, Man Walks Into a Room. A meditation on memory and personal history, solitude and intimacy, the novel won praise from Susan Sontag and was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Award. The movie rights to the novel were optioned by Richard Gere.

Her second novel, The History of Love, was first published as an excerpt in The New Yorker in 2004. The novel, published in the United States by W.W. Norton, weaves together the stories of Leo Gursky, an 80-year-old Holocaust survivor from Slonim, the young Alma Singer who is coping with the death of her father, and the story of a lost manuscript also called The History of Love. A film of the book, directed by Radu Mihaileanu, is scheduled for release in 2016.[17]

In spring 2007 Krauss was Holtzbrinck Distinguished Visitor at the American Academy in Berlin.[18]

Her third novel, Great House, connects the stories of four characters to a desk of many drawers that exerts a power over those who possess it or have given it away. It was named a finalist for the 2010 National Book Award for Fiction and was short-listed for the Orange Prize 2011 [19] and also won an Award from the Anisfield-Wolf Book Awards in 2011.[4]

In 2015 it was reported that she had signed a $4 million deal with Harper Collins to publish her next two works: the novel Late Wonder and a book of short stories entitled How to Be a Man.[20]

Personal life

In June 2004, Krauss married novelist Jonathan Safran Foer, and the couple had two children together, Sasha and Cy. The couple separated in 2014.[21][22] Krauss lives in Brooklyn, New York.


This list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it.


Short stories

Title Year First published Reprinted/collected in
Future emergencies 2002 Esquire (November 2002) Kennison, Katrina; Mosley, Walter, eds. (2003). The Best American Short Stories 2003. Houghtin Mifflin. 
The last words on Earth 2004 The New Yorker (February 9, 2004)
My painter 2007 Granta 97 (Spring 2007)
From the desk of Daniel Varsky 2007 Harper's (June 2007) Pitlor, Heidi; Rushdie, Salman, eds. (2008). The Best American Short Stories 2008. Houghtin Mifflin. 
The young painters 2010 The New Yorker 86/18 (June 28, 2010)
An arrangement of light 2012 An arrangement of light. San Francisco: Byliner. 2012. ISBN 9781614520405. [23]
Zusya on the roof 2013 The New Yorker 88/46 (February 4, 2013)
I Am Asleep but My Heart Is Awake 2014 The New Republic

Essays and reporting

Review columns

Date Review article Work(s) reviewed
2011 Krauss, Nicole (September 29, 2011). "Antwerp by Roberto Bolaño – review". The Guardian. Retrieved 2015-01-28.  Bolaño, Robert (2010). Antwerp. New Directions. ISBN 0811217175. 



  1. 1 2 3 Mark Flanagan. "Nicole Krauss". Contemporary Literature. Retrieved May 11, 2011.
  2. "20 Under 40: Q. & A. Nicole Krauss". The New Yorker. June 14, 2010. Retrieved August 22, 2012.
  3. 1 2 3 "Nicole Krauss". BBC Radio 3, BBC website. March 27, 2011. Retrieved April 28, 2011.
  4. 1 2 "Nicole Krauss: Great House". 2011 Fiction. Anisfield-Wolf Book Awards. 2011. Retrieved 27 March 2016.
  5. 1 2 Gaby Wood (May 15, 2005). "Have a heart". The Observer. Retrieved April 7, 2012.
  6. 1 2 Ann Marsh (September–October 2005). "The Emergence of Nicole Krauss". Stanford Magazine, Stanford Alumni Association. Retrieved May 11, 2011.
  7. Rachel Cooke (February 13, 2011). "Nicole Krauss: 'I take great pleasure in thinking'". The Observer. Retrieved March 27, 2016.
  8. Hannah Brown (May 14, 2010). "The history of Nicole Krauss". Jerusalem Post. Retrieved April 27, 2011.
  9. Jessica Teisch (Nov–Dec 2010). "Nicole Krauss" (49). Bookmarks Magazine. Retrieved April 28, 2011.
  10. Bryan Cheyette (March 11, 2011). "Great House By Nicole Krauss". The Independent. Retrieved April 27, 2011.
  11. 1 2 "A conversation with Nicole Krauss". Bold Type. Random House. May 2002. Retrieved April 28, 2011.
  12. Boris Katchka (May 21, 2005). "Bio Hazards". New York. Retrieved March 27, 2016.
  13. Nicole Krauss (November 7, 1999). "Future Tense". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved April 28, 2011.
  14. Leon Neyfakh (December 20, 2007). "Farrar, Straus and Giroux To Host Monthly Reading Series at Russian Samovar". New York Observer. Retrieved April 26, 2011.
  15. Joy Press (May 21, 2002). Living in Oblivion,Village Voice, Retrieved May 14, 2011. "Krauss is a fluent, thoughtful writer who takes on a lot of complex ideas and rarely loses her grip on them... Man Walks Into a Room is a chilling addition to the annals of amnesia lit. It's a novel that grapples with the ephemeral experience of being human and the realization that we create a lifetime of memories that vanish when we do".
  16. Gillian Flynn (August 2, 2002). "Man Walks Into a Room". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved July 16, 2011.
  17. Elsa Keslassy (2 March 2016). "Wild Bunch Sends Radu Mihaileanu's 'The History of Love' Across the World". Retrieved 27 March 2016.
  18. "Nicole Krauss: Holtzbrinck Distinguished Visitor, Class of Spring 2007". American Academy in Berlin. Retrieved March 11, 2012.
  19. "Orange Prize for Fiction announces 2011 shortlist". Orange. April 12, 2011. Retrieved April 26, 2011.
  20. Leah Finnegan (March 27, 2015). "Nicole Krauss Gets $4 Million for a Book Called How to Be a Man". TKTK. Retrieved March 26, 2016.
  21. Annabel Fenwick Elliott (June 18, 2014). "Extremely quiet and incredibly amicable: Literary power couple Jonathan Safran Foer and Nicole Krauss SPLIT following a secret year-long separation". Daily Mail. Retrieved August 30, 2014.
  22. JTA (June 19, 2014). "Authors Foer, Krauss have been separated for a year". Times of Israel. Retrieved August 30, 2014.
  23. Kasia Mychajlowycz (June 15, 2012). "Nicole Krauss at Luminato 2012". The Toronto Review of Books. Retrieved August 22, 2012. Krauss introduced and read this novella at Luminato, Toronto's Festival of Arts and Creativity

Further reading

External links

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