Darrington dazzles judges to win prize

Author Linda Hooper, of Todmorden, who won the Romantic Novelists' Association's Rose Award for her book The Dangerous Lord Darrington
Author Linda Hooper, of Todmorden, who won the Romantic Novelists' Association's Rose Award for her book The Dangerous Lord Darrington

An AUTHOR is celebrating after winning a prestigious literary award at a ceremony in London.

Linda Hooper, of Todmorden, won the Romantic Novelists’ Association’s (RoNA) Rose Award for her novel The Dangerous Lord Darrington.

Linda, who writes under several pen-names including Melinda Hammond and Sarah Mallory, was presented with the award at the RoNA Awards ceremony at the Gladstone Library, Whitehall Place.

She said she was shocked to win as it was the first time she has been shortlisted and she was up against a number of top authors.

“When they read out my name, I couldn’t really believe it,” she said.

“I was up against five very good and established authors on the shortlist.

“I didn’t expect to win with that calibre of shortlist, so it was a bit of a shock.”

For her prize, she was presented with a glass star, which she can keep, and a silver rose bowl, which she can hold onto until next year’s awards - dubbed the Oscars of the romantic fiction world - when it will be presented to the next winner.

“It was a very glittering occasion,” she said.

News of her success has still not sunk in.

“I’m still on cloud nine,” she said. “It’s just so wonderful.

“People keep ringing up to congratulate me.”

The Dangerous Lord Darrington is a romantic adventure set in Yorkshire and the south of England in Regency times.

It is published by Harlequin Mills and Boon.

The book was selected for the award shortlist by a panel of readers.

“To have your readers like your book as much as this is a real accolade,” she said.

She has recently finished writing a book for a Mills and Boon series which is coming out later in the year.

She is now working on another book.

“The main thing is to get the books out there and hopefully the readers will keep reading them,” she said.