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Burial Rites - Hannah Kent

Burial Rites - Hannah Kent

Title: Burial Rites

Author:  Hannah Kent

ISBN:  9781447233169

Weight:  990g

Prepublication dated signed first edition, first printing



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Our price:  £14.99

Burial Rites by Hannah Kent

In northern Iceland, 1829, Agnes Magnúsdóttir is condemned to death for her part in the brutal murder of two men.  Agnes is sent to wait out the time leading to her execution on the farm of District Officer Jón Jónsson, his wife and their two daughters.  Horrified to have a convicted murderess in their midst, the family avoids speaking with Agnes.

Only Tóti, the young assistant reverend appointed as Agnes’s spiritual guardian, is compelled to try to understand her, as he attempts to salvage her soul.

As the summer months fall away to winter and the hardships of rural life force the household to work side by side, Agnes’s ill-fated tale of longing and betrayal begins to emerge.  And as the days to her execution draw closer, the question burns: did she or didn’t she?

Based on a true story, Burial Rites is a deeply moving novel about personal freedom: who we are seen to be versus who we believe ourselves to be, and the ways in which we will risk everything for love.

In beautiful, cut-glass prose, Hannah Kent portrays Iceland’s formidable landscape, where every day is a battle for survival, and asks, how can one woman hope to endure when her life depends upon the stories told by others?

Peer & Press Reviews

So gripping I wanted to rush through the pages, but so beautifully written I wanted to linger over every sentence.  Hannah Kent’s debut novel is outstanding.

Madeline Miller, author of The Song of Achilles

All this research has paid off in spades: the end result is a novel so steeped in period detail that the extracts lifted from original sources sit eloquently alongside the fictionalised account, the transition between the two being effortlessly smooth…  Burial Rites is a debut of rare sophistication and beauty – a simple but moving story, meticulously researched and hauntingly told.


Hannah’s rendering of Agnes Magnúsdóttir is as vivid and authentic as Mailer’s Gary Gilmore, but done with greater economy and aplomb.  She has resurrected her heroine with grace and skill; her writing style is innately lyrical and her descriptions are clear and beautifully constructed.  Her dialogue is entirely believable, a thing not easily done.  Some writers never get it right; Hannah has done it with seeming effortlessness in her first novel.  Burial Rites is an amazing book.  I was completely engrossed all the way through, and heartbroken at its end.

Donal Ryan, author of The Spinning Heart

Bibliographic Info

Title:Burial Rites
Book Features
Edition / printing:First edition, first printing
Book features:This edition has a decorative midnight blue stain to the page edges.  Please note, many of the signed copies currently on sale don’t have this distinctive feature.
Overall condition:Fine / Fine (see our article on Condition Grades)
Signed:On the title page
Dated:24 August 2013 [pre-publication]
Awards and Media
Awards and prizes

International Dublin Literary Award 2015 – shortlist

Davitt Awards 2014 – winner (debut novel)

Davitt Awards 2014 – winner (reader’s choice)

Specsavers National Book Awards 2014 – shortlist (int. author)

Stella Prize 2014 – shortlist

Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction 2014 – shortlist

Guardian First Book Award 2013 – shortlist

Australia Unpublished Manuscript Award 2011 – winner

Book Stats
Publisher:Pan Macmillan
Publication date:
Printed by:CPI Group (UK) Ltd, Croydon
ISBN 13:9781447233169
ISBN 10:1447233166
Format:Hardcover with dust jacket
Size (h x w x d):223 x 141 x 34mm
Design Credits
Author photo:Nicholas Purcell
Jacket images:Hanka Steidle / plainpicture (back)
Map illustration:Martin Lubikowski

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