Review: Force of Nature by Jane Harper



Title: Force of Nature {Aaron Falk #2}

Author: Jane Harper

Published: Pan Macmillan September 17th, 2017

Status: Read March 2019



My Thoughts:

Force of Nature is Jane Harper’s second novel featuring Australian Federal Agent, Aaron Falk. Her first, The Dry, was a phenomenal success (you can read my review here) and Force of Nature is a solid follow up.

In Force of Nature, Falk, and his new partner Carmen Cooper, are investigating a company for money laundering. They are expecting to wrap the case in a matter of days, with help from insider, Alice Russell, when she goes missing during a corporate retreat.

The story unfolds through multiple perspectives, as it moves between the events leading up to Alice’s disappearance and the current active investigation. This allows Harper to introduce several possible motives for Alice’s disappearance, and develop an interesting mystery that kept me guessing until the end. Though I thought the pace was a little slow to begin with, the tension builds incrementally, and the plot is elegantly resolved.

Falk didn’t have the strong presence in this novel that I was expecting. He is peripheral to most of the action, and there were no new insights offered into his character. Neither was his partner, Carmen, particularly memorable.

I think I may have been more invested in the story if I had liked Alice. Though well drawn, she is an unpleasant character and I didn’t much care whether she was found, or not. I didn’t have any difficulty visualising Alice’s companions on the hike, Harper’s characterisations, and the dynamics between them, were interesting and complex.

Set largely in the Giralang Ranges of Victoria, Harper does a commendable
job of evoking the close, wet, and disorientating atmosphere of the Australian bush. As in The Dry, the setting is not simply the background of the story, but an integral part of it.

Force of Nature is well written, with a mystery that is skillfully crafted and compelling. I’m looking forward to Harper’s next Book in the series.



Available to Purchase @

Pan Macmillan Au or your preferred retailer

Learn more about The Dry, the first book in the Aaron Falk series




6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Laurel-Rain Snow
    Apr 04, 2019 @ 02:32:21

    I have a copy of Force of Nature…and now I’m almost ready to start reading it. After a few other books…sigh. Great review!

    Liked by 1 person


  2. divabooknerd
    Apr 04, 2019 @ 06:37:31

    Jane Harper has always been an author that appeals to me but I haven’t read anything of hers as yet. This sounds like it’s a little underwhelming compared to The Dry unfortunately. I love how atmospheric the location is, especially for a contemporary read but I couldn’t agree more, it’s hard to invest in an unlikable character, especially if their life is in jeopardy. Great review Shelleyrae, really enjoyed it.



  3. herding cats
    Apr 05, 2019 @ 03:55:40

    I’d not heard of these. Interesting that neither of the main series characters were a big presence/memorable in it.



  4. Trackback: It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? | book'd out
  5. Verushka, an editor (@SydneyEditor1)
    Apr 08, 2019 @ 18:56:07

    I absolutely adored The Dry and her most recent work, The Lost Man but I could not get into this one at all. I think some of the issues your mentioned — the pacing and the lack of Aaron is exactly why I couldn’t get into it at all.

    Liked by 1 person


I want to know what you think! Your comments are appreciated.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s