We’ve been thrilled this week to see Jane Harper’s second novel, Force Of Nature, enter the Sunday Times Bestseller list at number 7, following on from the success of her first novel The Dry. Jane started out by taking a CBC creative writing course in 2014, and soon after secured representation at CB Australia, with Alice Lutyens at Curtis Brown representing the UK rights.
Following a headline grabbing film option deal with Reece Witherspoon’s production company, The Dry became an international bestseller. In the UK it was featured as a Waterstones book of the month for two consecutive months and ended last year by winning the CWA Golden Dagger award as well as being named the Sunday Times Crime Book of the Year.
The Dry introduces the laconic Melbourne Detective Aaron Falk, who returns to his home town after many years of absence to investigate an apparent murder-suicide in the parched and combustible Australian farming community. In Force of Nature, Falk is back to solve the mysterious disappearance of a corporate whistle-blower in a heavily forested region east of Melbourne
It’s a notoriously difficult business to follow a hugely successful first novel, but early notices for Force of Nature were positive, and it shot straight to number one in Australia. Adrian McKinty in the Australian concluded that ‘fortunately, Harper has avoided all these pitfalls, producing an assured second book in what is bound to be a long series of adventures featuring Detective Falk’.
Now Force of Nature is garnering praise in the UK and US too, with the Guardian making it one of their picks for February in their 2018 books preview, and Barry Forshaw in the FT calling it ‘a distinguished entry’. Mark Sangerson in the Evening Standard praised a ‘heady-brew’ which ‘leaves you gagging to know who did what’ – and in the Independent, Alasdair Lees writes: ‘it’s stirring to see a writer racing out of the traps with such confidence and storytelling flair’. Meanwhile Oline H. Cogdill writes in the Washington Post of Harper’s ‘intense plotting and detail for characters and setting that she established in The Dry’
These excellent reviews have been followed up by the brilliant news of Force of Nature hitting the Sunday Times Hardback Fiction bestseller list, a little more than a year after her debut did the same. With talk of the film adaptation of The Dry going into production sometime this year, it’s clear that Jane Harper is now a force to be reckoned with in contemporary crime.
To purchase Jane Harper’s Force of Nature, click here.
To find out more and apply for the CBC course that Jane Harper took – our three month online novel-writing course, starting later this Spring, click here.
We also have a 3-month London-based novel-writing course, taught by Charlotte Mendelson