AustLit is a subscription service. The content and services available here are limited because you have not been recognised as a subscriber. Find out how to gain full access to AustLit


Hannah Kent is a writer and editor. She co-founded Australian literary journal Kill Your Darlings in 2010 and has served as deputy editor for the publication. She has also worked as an editorial assistant at Australian Book Review. Her creative and critical writing has appeared in The Big Issue, Australian Book Review, Transnational Literature, Kill Your Darlings, Readings Monthly and Voiceworks. In 2011, she was a judge of Melbourne University/The Australian Centre's Peter Blazey Fellowship for Life Writing. She has worked towards a PhD in Creative Writing at Flinders University, and has lived in Adelaide and Melbourne.

Kent won the inaugural Writing Australia Unpublished Manuscript Award in 2011 for her manuscript Burial Rites, which was published by Pan Macmillan in 2013.

Personal Awards

Awards for Works

Burial Rites 2013 single work novel historical fiction

'In northern Iceland, 1829, Agnes Magnusdottir 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 Jon Jonsson, his wife and their two daughters. Horrified to have a convicted murderess in their midst, the family avoids speaking with Agnes. Only Toti, 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?' (Publisher's blurb)

2015 shortlisted International Awards International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award
2014 shortlisted Victorian Premier's Literary Awards Fiction
2014 winner Victorian Premier's Literary Awards People's Choice Award
2014 winner Indie Awards Debut Fiction
2014 shortlisted The Stella Prize
2014 shortlisted ASAL Awards ALS Gold Medal
2014 shortlisted Women's Prize for Fiction (UK) Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction
2014 winner Australian Book Industry Awards (ABIA) Australian Literary Fiction Book of the Year
2014 winner Davitt Award Best Debut Crime Novel
2014 winner Nielsen BookData Booksellers Choice Award
2014 winner Australian Book Industry Awards (ABIA) Booktopia People's Choice Award
2014 shortlisted Davitt Award Best Adult Crime Novel
2014 winner Davitt Award Readers' Choice Award
2014 shortlisted International Awards National Book Awards (UK) International Author of the Year
2014 shortlisted Voss Literary Prize
2014 winner Booksellers Choice Award
2013 shortlisted 'The Nib': CAL Waverley Library Award for Literature
2013 winner 'The Nib': CAL Waverley Library Award for Literature The Alex Buzo Shortlist Prize
2013 shortlisted International Awards Guardian First Book Award
2011 inaugural winner Writing Australia Unpublished Manuscript Award
Last amended 27 Jan 2015 16:58:03
Other mentions of "" in AustLit: