Books and Ideas at Montalto
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Since 2013, with the international success of her debut novel, Burial Rites, Hannah Kent’s name is often mentioned in the same breath as that of Hilary Mantel or Geraldine Brooks; masters of literary historical fiction. Burial Rites, about a woman executed for murder in Iceland in 1830, was translated into 20 languages and won a swag of prestigious awards, including the Sydney Morning Herald’s Best Young Australian Novelist Award.
As the co-founder and publishing director of Australian literary journal, Kill Your Darlings, Kent has worked hard to champion the work of new literary voices and continues to do so. Geraldine Brooks mentored Kent through the development of the Burial Rites manuscript; now Kent mentors emerging writers herself.
In her second book, The Good People, Kent returns to the 1800s, and to the northern hemisphere. The action is set in south-western Ireland and is again inspired by a true story.
In conversation with Kate Forsyth, Hannah discusses the revival of historical fiction, Australia’s literary landscape and her fascination with troubled women in cold climes.
Books and Ideas at Montalto series sound design and music: Jon Tjhia.
Hannah Kent's debut novel, Burial Rites (2013), was translated into twenty-three languages. It won the ABIA Literary Fiction Book of the Year and the Indie Awards Debut Fiction Book of the Year, and was shortlisted for the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction, the Stella Prize, the Guardian First Book Award, and the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award. Hannah’s second novel, The Good People, will be published in October 2016. She is also the publishing director and editor of Kill Your Darlings journal.
Kate Forsyth wrote her first novel aged seven, and has now sold more than a million books internationally. Her novels include The Beast’s Garden, a retelling of Beauty and the Beast set in Nazi Germany; The Wild Girl, the story of the forbidden romance behind the Grimm brothers' fairy tales; and Bitter Greens, a retelling of Rapunzel which won the 2015 ALA Award for Best Historical Fiction.