Excerpt from Force of Nature by Jane Harper, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

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Force of Nature

A Novel

by Jane Harper

Force of Nature by Jane Harper X
Force of Nature by Jane Harper
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  • First Published:
    Feb 2018, 320 pages
    Paperback:
    Jan 2019, 352 pages

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Print Excerpt


"I tried to call her back when I woke up; probably around six thirty," Falk said, still watching the screen. "It rang out."

The TV cut to an aerial shot of the Giralang Ranges. Hills and valleys rolled out to the horizon, a rippling green ocean under the weak winter light.

SEARCH TO RESUME AT DAWN …

Carmen was quiet. Falk could hear her breathing. On screen, the ranges looked big. Enormous, in fact. The thick carpet of treetops appeared completely impenetrable from the camera's vantage point.

"Let me listen to the message again," he said. "I'll call you back."

"Okay." The line went dead.

Falk sat on his couch in the semi-dark, the blue light of the TV screen flickering. He hadn't drawn his curtains, and beyond the small balcony he could see the glow of the Melbourne skyline. The warning light on top of the Eureka Tower flashed, regular and red.

SEARCH TO RESUME AT DAWN IN GIRALANG …

He turned down the TV and dialed his voice mail. Call received at 4:26 A.M. from Alice Russell's cell phone.

At first Falk could hear nothing, and he pressed his phone harder against his ear. Muffled static for five seconds. Ten. He kept listening, right to the end this time. The white noise lurched in waves; it sounded like being underwater. There was a muted hum that might have been someone talking. Then, out of nowhere, a voice broke through. Falk jerked the phone away from his ear and stared at it. The voice had been so faint he wondered if he'd imagined it.

Slowly, he tapped the screen. He closed his eyes in his quiet flat and played the message one more time. Nothing, nothing, and then, in the darkness, a faraway voice spoke two words in his ear.

"—hurt her…"

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Excerpted from Force of Nature by Jane Harper. Copyright © 2018 by Jane Harper. Excerpted by permission of Flatiron Books. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

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