The compelling new novel from Jane Harper, the New York Times bestselling author of The Dry.
Kieran Elliott's life changed forever on the day a reckless mistake led to devastating consequences.
The guilt that still haunts him resurfaces during a visit with his young family to the small coastal town he once called home.
Kieran's parents are struggling in a community which is bound, for better or worse, to the sea, that is both a lifeline and a threat. Between them all is his absent brother, Finn.
When a body is discovered on the beach, long-held secrets threaten to emerge. A sunken wreck, a missing girl, and questions that have never washed away...
- Publication Date:
- 22 / 09 / 2020
- 153 x 234mm
A great new mystery set in Tasmania
Readers have come to associate Harper with complex character-based mysteries set in strongly evocative and quintessentially Australian settings. In The Survivors, the action takes place in a (fictional) small coastal town in Tasmania.
Kieran Elliott, his wife Mia and baby daughter Audrey have travelled to their home town, to assist his mother to pack up the family home prior to sale. The next morning a young local woman is found murdered at the town beach. Could there be a connection between this recent violent death events that occurred during a wild storm twelve years earlier, when Kieran’s brother and another man were killed at sea and a local girl went missing?
Readers of Harper's previous novels will notice a certain correlation of themes with her earlier work - a central character who is (somewhat unfairly) treated as a pariah in a small community, the concept that old sins cast long shadows and the widely varying but universally unforgiving Australian climate.
Harper also explores themes of parent-child relationships, grief, anger and guilt. As always, her characters are three-dimensional and their interrelationships complex and evolving. The narrative is well-paced, languid at first, reflecting the pace of the small-town coastal setting, then gathering pace as both the police and Kieran hone in on the truth. Harper skilfully uses red herrings and misdirection to leave the reader guessing, right up to the dramatic conclusion. The setting of the fictional Evelyn Bay is well-imagined by the author, and brought to my mind several settlements around Tasmania's coastline. I was interested to read that the author had spent some time at Eaglehawk Neck, researching cold-water diving for the book.
The Survivors is another strong addition by Jane Harper to the wonderful Australian crime genre. Highly recommended.
My thanks to Jane Harper, and Pan Macmillan Australia for the opportunity to read and review this title in advance of its publication on 22 September 2020.