I was disappointed when I found out that The Lost Man wasn’t another Aaron Falk book – but then a friend whose reading opinion I value mentioned that this was actually her favourite of Jane Harper’s outback Australian mysteries.
She was right – this family drama can only be told from within the family.
Nathan Bright is a lonely, divorced outcast called back to the family property when the body of his closest brother Cameron is discovered near a local landmark. It’s looks like suicide – like he drove into the desert and gave up. But why? What drives a family man to leave his wife and daughters behind?
What follows is an examination of our assumptions about Cameron’s life – as well as hidden elements of the lives of he other Bright brothers too. Bub, the youngest, longs to both prove himself but also separate himself from the family legacy. Nathan has been shunned by the community, and retreated so far into himself that his teenage son believes she will be the next to give up the ghost. And then there is Ilsa, Cameron’s wife but a woman Nathan met and loved before Cameron. Do second chances really exist? And under what circumstances?
The Lost Man took a little time to get into, but was well worth the time spent in pondering and profiling these quintessentially Australian characters. Well-crafted and well-considered.