A while ago I reviewed a book set in Australia called ‘The Dry’ by Jane Harper. The title is a bit of a give away – the story takes place in a small town during a dangerously hot and dry spell where the risk of fire is a constant danger. Set against this is the horrific murder of a blameless family, including a child. It was the first novel of Jane Harper and I thought it was terrific; I read it after I had spent some time in Australia and I could really imagine the setting and the events taking place in that backdrop. A brilliant book, and what is better than a brilliant book?
I was just wandering through a book shop recently and saw the second novel by Harper – ‘Force of Nature’, and without even looking at the blurb I bought it. I didn’t look at anything about it but began to read it on the train to Portsmouth where we went the last weekend. I was pleased that the book featured the same detective as ‘The Dry’ because he was such an interesting character – and as I write about a male protagonist I’m interested to read other books by women with a man as the main person.
Before I write more I have to say it is a fantastic book – I really enjoyed The Dry, and if anything, I enjoyed Force of Nature more. Harper is a great writer, and in this second book her language just flows; her descriptions of people and locations is masterful – or should that be mistressful? There are parallel story lines which relate the investigation of the mystery, and also what happened which led up to the events which occasioned the investigation.
If I sound a little discrete that’s because I would hate to spoil any of the intricate mystery which Harper weaves.. The conclusion, the resolution is complete and totally believable – the mystery solved in a realistic way, and various sub-plots also tied up satisfactorily. I hope that if you haven’t read ‘The Dry’ you will, and that you will also read ‘Force of Nature’.
…and what is better than a good book? To find the author has written another or more good books just waiting for you!
I would love to know if you think my latest novel is ‘a good book’; it’s called Saltpans and is the sixth in a series of genealogical mysteries – mysteries which also have other curious cases investigated by the main character, Thomas Radwinter. Here’s a link, and please tell me what you think: