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University of Queensland Press (2015-02-25)
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by Gislason, Kari

Growing up with his father in a small coastal town, all Ted knows about his mother is that she died when he was a boy. His father has brought them halfway across the world to start anew, but her absence defines and haunts their lives.

When Ted meets Anthony and Claire, an intense friendship begins, carrying them to Sydney and university. They introduce him to poetry and art, and he feels a sense of belonging at last. But as the trio’s friendship deepens over the years, Ted must learn to negotiate the boundaries of love, and come to terms with a legacy of secrets and silence.

Written with extraordinary grace and sensitivity, The Ash Burner explores beauty and desire, grief and loss, and the search for one’s true self.

Kári Gíslason is a memoirist, travel writer and creative writing teacher. He has taught English Literature and Writing at the University of Iceland, the University of Queensland, and Bond University, and currently lectures in Creative Writing and Literary Studies at QUT. In 2010, he received a Dean’s Award for Excellence in Teaching at QUT. He has also been a judge for the Steele Rudd Short Story Collection prize.

His first book, The Promise of Iceland (UQP, 2011), told the story of his secret Icelandic family history and his journey to know his father. His second book, The Ash Burner (UQP, 2015), is his first novel.

Kári has published travel articles and essays in literary journals and in the mainstream press. As part of his teaching approach he maintains a blog about travel and writing:

Kári lives in Brisbane with his wife Olanda and their two children, Finnur and Magnús.

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At once contemplative and precise, The Ash Burner is an exquisitely written novel that left me deeply moved by its tender exploration of beauty and grief. Kári Gíslason is a thinker’s writer: thoughtful, sentient and graceful in his questioning of the world. A debut that will linger with me.

Quote: Hannah Kent, Author

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