Kinsella lauded at RNA awards

Sophie Kinsella has been awarded the outstanding achievement award at this year’s Romantic Novelists’ Association (RNA)’s Romantic Novel of the Year category awards, which also saw Katie Fforde win the contemporary category for a second year in a row.

At the event, hosted by Judy Finnigan and Richard Madeley yesterday evening (26th February), the author of the Shopaholic series was presented the award for “her continued contribution to the world of romantic fiction”.

The Contemporary Romantic Novel award went to Katie Fforde for a second year, this time for her novel Recipe for Love (Arrow) after Summer of Love scooped the prize last year.

Rowan Coleman won in the Epic category for Dearest Rose, also published by Arrow, while the Historical category prize went to Charlotte Betts’ The Apothecary’s Daughter (Piatkus).

The Romantic Comedy prize-winner was Jenny Colgan’s Welcome to Rosie Hopkin’s Sweetshop of Dreams (Sphere) while the Young Adult winner was Victoria Lamb’s Witchstruck (RHCP).

All five category-winners will go forward for the RNA Romantic Novel of the Year, to be revealed at the RNA summer party on 16th May.

RNA chair Annie Ashurt said to the gathered audience: “Tonight we are here to celebrate the success of our brightest stars. We are proud of their talent, tenacity and dedication to their craft.

"It is a lonely thing to write a novel, and to keep on going even as doubts set in—as they do with us all. Our Awards give us an opportunity to publicly recognise the enjoyment you bring to your readers."

Meanwhile the RoNa Rose Award, which recognises the best in category/series and shorter romance, went to Sarah Mallory for a second year, for her Beneath the Major’s Scars (Harlequin Mills & Boon). The prize does not continue to the next round.

The RNA was formed in 1960 to promote romantic fiction and encourage good writing and now represents more than 700 writers, agents, editors and other publishing professionals.