The Dry by Jane Harper

Posted on August 14, 2018 - 12:22pm

All I can say is Wow! I’ve noticed this book around the library, and heard good things about Jane Harper, but hadn’t made an effort to check it out.

Until a few weeks ago.

And I’m hooked.

 Jane Harper has a gift, and it shines through in The Dry, her first novel; set in the small town of Kiewarra, Australia. The farming and ranch community has been devastated by a two-year drought, and tensions are high.  Aaron Falk returns to attend the funeral of his friend Luke Hadler, who allegedly shot his wife Karen and son Billy, then turned the gun on himself.  Did they have money problems? What was Luke hiding?

Aaron left his hometown over twenty years before with his father after the mysterious drowning of his childhood friend Ellie. Suspicion and gossip pointed the finger at Aaron, and his return to town, now as a federal agent, stirs up the same old angry feelings. Planning on only staying long enough to attend Luke's funeral, he is asked by a police officer in town to stay and help investigate.  Something just doesn’t ring true, and as they dig deeper in the dry, dusty, hot summer, the past and the present mingle and add tension that is palpable. The residents of Kiewarra have very long memories and short fuses.

It didn’t take me long to dive into this novel, and I couldn’t wait to pick it up every day. Luckily, Jane Harper has written a sequel, Force of Nature.  We’ve got more investigations with Aaron Falk. Trust me. This is an excellent thriller, and it all adds up to a few big surprises. The Metro Library Network has The Dry available in audio, ebook, and print. I'm adding Jane Harper to my list of favorite authors. 

Sue Gerth, Circulation Services Coordinator