Joan Leegant has won numerous prizes for her story collection, AN HOUR IN PARADISE (W.W. Norton), including the Edward Lewis Wallant Award for the best book of Jewish-American fiction, and the L.L. Winship/PEN New England Award for the best book by a New England author. AN HOUR IN PARADISE was also a Fall 2003 Selection for the Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Program.
Joan attended Radcliffe College, Boston University Law School, and the Vermont College MFA Program. After practicing law for several years, she went to Jerusalem for what was to be a six month stay. She remained there for nearly three years, becoming absorbed by the varieties of Jewish experience that later made their way into her fiction.
She is a recipient of an artist grant from the Massachusetts Cultural Council and several fellowships from the MacDowell Colony. She teaches writing at Harvard University.