For second year in a row it’s a Rose for Sarah

Linda Hooper, who writes as Sarah Mallory, received the RoNA Rose award from Judy Finnegan and Richard Madeley
Linda Hooper, who writes as Sarah Mallory, received the RoNA Rose award from Judy Finnegan and Richard Madeley

Calder Valley romantic fiction writer Sarah Mallory has won a top national award for the second year running.

Sarah - a pen name of Todmorden writer Linda Hooper - won the Romantic Novelists’ Association “Rona Rose” award last year and has triumphed again with her historical romance Beneath the Major’s Scars, published by Harlequin Mills & Boon Historical, was declared this year’s winner.

Television presenters and book recommendation favourites Judy Finnigan and Richard Madeley presented her with an engraved crystal star to mark her achievement at the awards night in London. The RoNA Rose category is for shorter or series fiction works, one of a number of RNA awards writers compete for each year.

Linda, writing as Sarah, is the first author to win the RoNA Rose, first awarded in the early 1990s, two years running and only the second to win it twice.

“So I am absolutely thrilled, it’s such a boost,” she said.

“The association send it out to readers who are members of the public. “They are used to reading these sort of books and enjoy them and the positive feedback is a big thing.”

Linda, who also writes as Melinda Hammond, published her first two books in the 1980s and having brought up her family took up her pen again when her third book was published in 2000.

She is currently working on another title for Mills and Boon and an already completed work is due to be published by them in August.

Linda hopes one day to use her skills in related areas of writing. “I would love to do a mainstream novel at some stage. I love doing the historical romances but would like to do a full historical novel at some point,” she said.