Magee studied German and French at University College Dublin and journalism at Dublin City University. For 12 years, she worked as a journalist, writing for publications such as The Times, The Irish Times, The Observer, and The Guardian.
In 2014, Magee published The Undertaking, her debut novel. It was published by Atlantic Books. The novel is set in World War II-era Germany and "tells the story of Peter Faber, a German soldier fighting on the Eastern front, who marries Katharina Spinell, a woman he has never met, in order to escape the horrors of the battlefield for a few days."
She wrote The Undertaking with the goal of trying to understand "what it was like to have been an ordinary German during the Second World War." Magee took a "long time" to write the novel, as she "struggled with the novel's cruelty and indifference." To cope, she took walks and drank tea. The novel was reviewed in The New York Times, which said, "To write a story that doesn’t allow for much sympathy, that keeps readers at a remove from the central characters, is one of the greatest challenges an author can undertake. That Magee succeeds as well as she does is impressive."
- Helen Dunmore (2014-03-01). "The Undertaking by Audrey Magee – review". The Guardian. Retrieved 2016-04-20.
- Lucy Popescu (2014-02-02). "Book review: The Undertaking by Audrey Magee | Reviews | Culture". The Independent. Retrieved 2016-04-20.
- "A Q&A with Audrey Magee about The Undertaking". Irishtimes.com. 2015-02-13. Retrieved 2016-04-20.
- Louisa Thomas (2014-09-14). "Love and Fascism — 'The Undertaking,' by Audrey Magee". The New York Times. Retrieved 2016-04-20.
- BookBrowse. "Audrey Magee author biography". BookBrowse.com. Retrieved 2016-04-22.
- O'Loughlin, Writing.ie. Editor Vanessa (2014-02-13). "The Undertaking: Eleanor Fitzsimons Talks to Audrey Magee". Writing.ie. Retrieved 2016-04-22.
- "About Audrey Magee - Author of 'The Undertaking'". www.audreymagee.com. Retrieved 2016-04-22.