I’m so sad to write this, it’s breaking my heart….because I’ve finished Jane Harper’s most recent book and now I have nothing left of hers to read. YOU GUYS! WHAT AM I GOING TO DO?! I’m devastated that I have to wait who knows how long. But at least her most recent story was probably the best one yet.
The Lost Man is a whole new set of characters set in the punishing outback of Australia. As always there will be spoilers so if you haven’t read this book yet, please go do it, it’s fucking incredible.
Nathan Bright, Cameron Bright, and Bub Bright are three brothers that have grown up among their cattle ranch. Nathan moved next door to his own cattle ranch with his now ex-wife Jacqui and they had a son, Xander. Cameron married a traveler, Ilse and they had two young girls. Bub has never married but lives with Cameron’s family and their Mother on the ranch.
One morning Nathan and his son Xander get the call that Cameron is dead. Bub is with him. They travel out to the middle of nowhere where a lone grave stands. An urban legend among the small community. Dead at the grave is Cameron - clearly died of dehydration in the punishing desert sand. It’s a complete mystery.
And as Nathan returns home with his son, the entire family work together to solve the mysterious death of Cameron. This family has a lot of secrets and Nathan is about to uncover them all.
OKAY SPOILER TIME - HEAD BACK IF YOU’RE NOT READY
Jane Harper has done it again - created incredible characters that all have depth so deep you could drown in them. Don’t tell Aaron Falk, but I think I’ve fallen in love with Nathan Bright. His entire story is amazing. He’s a man who has made many mistakes, and who spends his life punishing himself for it. The only bright spot in his life is his son Xander. It’s fascinating to learn all of Nathan’s secrets and his sad story and then watch as he begins to forgive himself and allow himself to live.
The budding love story between Nathan and Ilse was so tragically beautiful, I think I would’ve screamed if they hadn’t ended up together.
Ilse is of course, another incredible character. Her personal strength is insurmountable as she works every day to keep her and her children safe against her husband who has been spiraling out of control.
Then there’s Uncle Harry, he’s not technically related to the family at all but has been working on the ranch since the boys were little. He’s seen absolutely everything go down. But yet he’s never stepped in. There’s a part of you that feels for him, and another part that resents him.
And poor Bub. The baby of the brothers, who took the brunt of the abuse when Nathan and Cam left home. Bub who’s never left home or been given a chance to be his own man. He drinks, he’s made mistakes too, but he loves his family and ultimately will do anything for them.
So many incredible characters, their stories weaving in and out from each other, it’s such a joy to read.
Of course, there’s the mystery - did Cam commit suicide by leaving himself out in the desert, knowing the sun would kill him? Or was he murdered? I absolutely did not see this one coming. It took me completely by surprise and I genuinely clutched my pearls when it was revealed.
Liz, the Mother of these boys, killed her own son. And that might sound despicable to you. But as you read through this story, by the time you get to the reveal, you completely understand why. While reading, your opinion flips back and forth on Cameron. But at the end - you know for sure, that man deserved what happened to him. He raped women, he abused his children and his wife. So yeah….his Mother murdered him. And everyone in the family is glad she did.
It’s no surprise that Harper continues to get better each book she pumps out. The descriptions of the scenery in this story are overwhelming. I genuinely felt like I was trekking through a scorching desert with the cattle. I could practically smell the dust. And her small town creation is still so on point. So many side characters that are just as fascinating as the main ones.
Another one knocked out of the park, Jane Harper. I love you. Please write 50 more books.
Want more spooky reads? Search below: