I don't remember where I first heard about this book. I just remember someone encouraging me to go read the sample pages. I did and was hooked! Could not wait to read it!
After getting a note demanding his presence, Federal Agent Aaron Falk arrives in his hometown for the first time in decades to attend the funeral of his best friend, Luke. Twenty years ago when Falk was accused of murder, Luke was his alibi. Falk and his father fled under a cloud of suspicion, saved from prosecution only because of Luke’s steadfast claim that the boys had been together at the time of the crime. But now more than one person knows they didn’t tell the truth back then, and Luke is dead.
Amid the worst drought in a century, Falk and the local detective question what really happened to Luke. As Falk reluctantly investigates to see if there’s more to Luke’s death than there seems to be, long-buried mysteries resurface, as do the lies that have haunted them. And Falk will find that small towns have always hidden big secrets.
I LOVED this one. It sucks you with this beautiful, lyrical style writing that makes you feel the oppressive heat of an Australian drought and keeps the pages turning with subtle twists and secrets that just beg you to work the puzzle. I figured it out about a chapter before the characters did and, in my opinion, that is the best kind of mystery!
The other reason I am raving about this book is that authors are always told to "take the worst thing that could happen and make it that much more devastating." Jane Harper absolutely mastered that in The Dry. The stakes of the story escalated so high that I audibly gasped once.
What is great is after I read it, I had several ah-ha moments where I realized how well the symbolism had been woven into the story.
It does read with more of a literary fiction style than your typical thriller/suspense and some of the flashbacks aren't clearly defined so it takes your brain a moment to shift to the past.
I would absolutely recommend this to anyone who enjoys a mystery and if you're on the fence, go read the sample pages on Amazon! Because then, you'll have to know the rest!
According to Jane Harper's website, film rights have been optioned to Reese Witherspoon and Bruna Papandrea. So excited to hear that!
Also, there is a second book coming out in this series in February, Force of Nature. I am looking forward to that!