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Wednesday, 7 June, 2000, 00:49 GMT 01:49 UK
Briton wins women's writing prize
Tel Aviv
The winning novel's heroine reinvents herself in Tel Aviv
This year's 30,000 Orange Prize for women's fiction has been won by journalist Linda Grant.

Grant beat the bookies' favourite, Zadie Smith, and is the first UK winner in four years to win a competition for female novelists previously dominated by US and Canadian authors.

The winner was a unanimous choice of the judging panel, which was led by broadcaster Polly Toynbee.

Grant's winning novel - When I Lived In Modern Times - is the story of Evelyn Sert who leaves London to reinvent her life in Tel Aviv as the Jewish state is founded.

Anonymous endowment

As well as her cash prize, Linda Grant gets a bronze trophy known as a Bessie. Both the trophy and the 30,000 cheque are anonymously endowed.

Liverpool-born and London-based, she is a columnist and feature writer for The Guardian, and her previous books include The Cast Iron Shore and Remind Me Who I am Again.

The only other UK writer on the Orange Prize's shortlist of six was 24-year-old Zadie Smith, who had been hotly tipped to win for her novel White Teeth.

It is being adapted for television and has reportedly persuaded publishers to give her a six-figure advance for her next book.

White Teeth won her the best book/novel award last month at the annual Ethnic Minority Media Awards - the Emmas.

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