Jane Healey, who was shortlisted for the 2013 Bristol Short Story Prize, has been announced as the winner of the Historical Writers’ Association’s (HWA) Debut Crown Award for 2020.
The prestigious award is presented to the year’s best “historical novel by a first-time fiction author of any nationality first published in the UK in English.” The HWA is an organisation of authors, publishers and agents of historical writing that supports and creates opportunities for its members, and promotes and raises the profile of historical writing. The announcement was made via video and can be seen here:
Jane’s winning novel, The Animals at Lockwood Manor, is set at the start of World War Two and follows Hetty Cartwright as she undertakes the evacuation and safekeeping of the Natural History Museum’s collection of mammals at the troubled and secret-infested, Lockwood Manor. The book was shortlisted for the HWA award with other widely celebrated historical novels of 2020, including Lauren Wilkinson’s American Spy and Sara Collins’ The Confessions of Frannie Langton.
Reacting to the announcement on Twitter, Jane wrote: “Utterly stunned by this!!! Let out the maddest sound when I saw my book pop up on the screen!”.
Many congratulations to Jane – it’s great to know that her excellent debut will be finding even more readers.
Jane’s brilliant short story, Pool Boy, was shortlisted for the 2013 Bristol Short Story Prize and is published in our Volume 6 Anthology by Tangent Books.