Author: Hannah Kent
Publication Date: 2013
Source: Xmas Gift
Set against Iceland's stark landscape, Hannah Kent brings to vivid life the story of Agnes, who, charged with the brutal murder of her former master, is sent to an isolated farm to await execution.
Horrified at the prospect of housing a convicted murderer, the family at first avoids Agnes. Only Tóti, a priest Agnes has mysteriously chosen to be her spiritual guardian, seeks to understand her. But as Agnes's death looms, the farmer's wife and their daughters learn there is another side to the sensational story they've heard.
Riveting and rich with lyricism, BURIAL RITES evokes a dramatic existence in a distant time and place, and asks the question, how can one woman hope to endure when her life depends upon the stories told by others? (Goodreads Synopsis)
Burial Rites is a book I have been keen to read for many months and now I have finally gotten around to it, it has not disappointed me.
This is a stark story, yet Kent tells it with great pathos and through simple, elegant prose with beautiful imagery. I found it hard to put the book down, constantly wanted to turn the page and see what would happen next.
Kent's characters are believable and well-rounded, especially Agnes and Toti, and the novel moves at a good pace towards its inevitable conclusion.
I highly recommend this book and look forward to future works by this author.