Former rough sleeper on literary shortlist

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The Independent Culture

A former rough sleeper is in line for a prestigious literary prize for romantic novelists.

Tom Gamble is the only man on the shortlist for the Romantic Novelists Association Novel of the Year Award for his fiction debut.

Gamble, who now lives in France, said the period spent living on the streets in London ended when he met an American woman who put him "back on the road to recovery".

Gamble's novel, Amazir, a love story set in 1930s Morocco, was described as an "epic" by its publisher Simon Petherick.

The other writers shortlisted for the award are Elizabeth Chadwick; Jojo Moyes; Rebecca Dean; Kate Furnivall and Sarah Duncan.

The winner will be announced on 7 March.