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Eleanor Catton strikes Booker gold at 28

New Zealand’s Eleanor Catton has won the 2013 Man Booker Prize at the tender age of 28. She is the youngest ever winner of the award and pockets £50,000 for The Luminaries, an epic 832-page mystery set during the 1866 New Zealand gold rush.

Born in Canada and raised in New Zealand, Catton lives in Auckland. Her 2008 debut novel, The Rehearsal, was longlisted for the Orange Prize so she’s been at the top of her game for sometime.

The Luminaries’ plot is structured according to astrological charts – with each section exactly half the length of its predecessor.

Catton is the second Kiwi to win the Booker after Keri Hulme in 1985 with The Bone People. The Luminaries is the longest ever Booker winner, beating Hilary Mantel’s 672-page Wolf Hall.

The previous youngest winner was Ben Okri, who was 32 when he won with The Famished Road in 1991.

Signed copies of The Luminaries on AbeBooks.com sold out within 40 minutes of the Booker announcement.

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