LONDON — New Zealand author Eleanor Catton has won fiction's Booker Prize for "The Luminaries," an ambitious 832-page murder mystery set during a 19th-century gold rush.

At 28, Catton is the youngest writer and only the second New Zealander to win the prestigious 50,000 pound ($80,000) award — and her epic novel is easily the longest.

Catton had been bookmakers' joint favorite among the six prize finalists, alongside British novelist Jim Crace, for his rural parable "The Harvest."

Catton received her during a ceremony.