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Norwich author Emma Healey scoops national award for debut novel - and will now battle five other authors for overall prize

PUBLISHED: 11:59 06 January 2015 | UPDATED: 11:59 06 January 2015

The Norfolk and Suffolk Dementia Alliance conference for Dementia carers. Norwich bestselling author, Emma Healey. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

The Norfolk and Suffolk Dementia Alliance conference for Dementia carers. Norwich bestselling author, Emma Healey. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Archant

A Norwich author has triumphed in a national book prize with her debut novel.

Emma HealeyEmma Healey

Emma Healey’s book Elizabeth is Missing has been announced as the winner of the 2014 Costa First Novel Award.

The 29-year-old will now go on to compete for the 2014 Costa Book of the Year with five other authors, who were crowned victorious in the Novel, Biography, Poetry and Children’s Book categories.

Elizabeth is Missing tells the story of elderly woman Maud whose friend vanishes. She sets out to solve the mystery of her missing friend while battling her own dementia.

Ms Healey, a former web administrator and student at UEA, said: “I am absolutely thrilled. I’ve read the books on the shortlist and they are really good, so I didn’t think I had a chance.

“It’s been an amazing time, you have an idea of how great it would feel to see your book on a shelf in Waterstones but you don’t think of everything that comes with it.”

The five authors, who will each receive £5,000, were selected from 640 entries. The awards are now in their 43rd year.

The overall winner, who will receive £30,000, will be announced at a ceremony in London on Tuesday, January 27.

Do you have a story? Contact lauren.cope@archant.co.uk

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