The Dry – book and movie review

It hasn’t rained in Kiewarra for two years. Tensions in the farming community become unbearable when three members of the Hadler family are discovered shot to death on their property. Everyone assumes Luke Hadler committed suicide after slaughtering his wife and six-year-old son.

Federal Police investigator Aaron Falk returns to his hometown for the funerals and is unwillingly drawn into the investigation. As suspicion spreads through the town, Falk is forced to confront the community that rejected him twenty years earlier. Because Falk and his childhood friend Luke Hadler shared a secret, one which Luke’s death threatens to unearth …

The Dry by Jane Harper is a truly Australian story – from the red dirt and blowflies, to the small town secrets and loyalties. Reading this book, it is easy to picture the town of Kiewarra and the people who live there, and the movie accurately brings these images to the screen. The characters are so realistic, and the mysteries keeps us guessing and suspecting. Nothing is as it seems at first.

Eric Bana is a fantastic actor who fills the role of Aaron Falk perfectly. The screen adaptation was excellent to watch, despite knowing “whodunnit” due to reading the book first. The flashbacks to the main characters’ youth are well done, drawing us into the past and the way it is impacting on the current state of the town and its community.

The book and movie are both recommendations from me. Do you prefer to watch or read first?


So many formats!

You can access ‘The dry’ via Cockburn Libraries in the best format for you.

Link to Catalogue record for The dry
Link to Catalogue record for The dry DVD


  • Australian Book Industry Award for Australian Book of the Year 2017
  • Indie Book Award for Book of the Year 2017
  • Sunday Times Crime Book of the Year Award 2017
  • Goodreads Choice Award for Best Mystery Thriller and Best Debut 2017
  • British Book Award for Crime & Thriller Book of the Year 2018
  • UK Crime Writer’s Association Gold Dagger Award for Best Crime Novel 2017
  • Amazon Best Mystery and Thriller Novel Award 2017
  • Barry Award for Best First Novel of 2017

Love book-to-screen? Check out these other great titles!

Link to Catalogue record for Big little lies
Link to Catalogue record for Little fires everywhere
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