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Youngest ever winner of the Orange Prize for Fiction

Twenty-five-year-old Serbian-American Téa Obreht beat off competition from the favourite, Irish writer Emma Donoghue.

Obreht said she was
Obreht said she was "tickled pink" by her win
Image: Sang Tan/AP/Press Association Images

AN UNKNOWN AUTHOR has swooped in and claimed the Orange Prize for Fiction. Téa Obreht is, at the age of 25, the youngest person ever to take the prize for her debut novel The Tiger’s Wife.

Obreht beat out the favourite, Irish writer Emma Donoghue, who was also nominated for the Booker Prize for her novel Room. The Telegraph reports that her win was “far from anticipated”.

The young writer is a Serbian-American, and her book is set during the Balkan civil war. It’s narrated by a young doctor who is determined to uncover the circumstances of her grandfather’s mysterious death.

Historian Bettany Hughes headed the judging panel and said that Obreht’s “powers of observation and her understanding of the world are remarkable”.

The Orange Prize for Fiction is awarded to the best novel written in the English language by a woman, and it is judged by women.

Read more: Orange Prize won by relative unknown Téa Obreht>

Column: Female writers don’t need their own prizes to compete with men>

About the author:

Emer McLysaght

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