The Dry by Jane Harper
Aaron Falk returns to his hometown that he fled years ago. The locals that remember him don’t want him around as his fleeing was a result of being a suspect in the murder of a young girl. Coming back wasn’t his first choice, but the sudden murder-suicide of his best friend, Luke’s, family brought him back for the funeral. Though it has been years since Aaron and Luke have spoken been close, Aaron cannot imagine this horrifying act of violence could have been his childhood friend. Teaming up with the local police, Aaron tries to determine if this was a setup murder or if Luke really did take the life of his beloved family. It isn’t exactly safe for Aaron to continue to meddle around town, but his desire for answers is willing to risk his own life for.
Jane Harper does a lovely job weaving two stories together and creating a main character that may or may not be reliable. With Aaron’s past, and his less that welcoming homecoming, I found myself questioning whether or not he was trustworthy. Are his intentions pure? Does he truly want to find out the truth about his childhood friend, or is he back to make sure his own past isn’t being uncovered? I appreciate the element of mistrust within characters. I found myself spinning, questioning who was honest and who was trying to cover their own backsides.
Though I liked this novel, I felt a bit disconnected when the answers to questions started to reveal themselves. I thought that Harper lead me down one path, and then brought the novel back towards another path that didn’t connect with the main stories. One might think this is a true plot twist, but I felt it wasn’t so much of a surprise twist as a totally different story that wasn’t explored until the reveal. Overall, I liked the writing style and I liked the character development of Aaron Falk. I felt this was a fast paced thriller that I needed to finish. I am eager to jump into Jane Harper’s next read.