Rebus is retired and supposedly taking things easy but he isn’t feeling great and has been persuaded to give up cigarettes. To keep himself occupied he thinks back to a murder from years ago when a wealthy socialite was murdered at the Caledonian Hotel. In the meantime, Big Ger Cafferty is also supposed to have started to take things easy. So when his rival, Darryl Christie, is attacked, Rebus knows who to go to. But is this new crime somehow to do with what happened years ago? And how can Rebus investigate when he isn’t even on the force any more. As Siobhan Clarke comes to see, being retired isn’t slowing him down one bit!
I do enjoy the Rebus novels and this one settles into its normal rhythms in the first few paragraphs with Rebus spending a meal out with Deborah Quant talking about a cold case murder. I did think the series had come to a natural end when Rebus retired and, although it is always good to see him, I am not entirely sure that even his bullish personality would just allow him to go around Edinburgh barging into police stations and interviewing suspects by not actually telling them who he is. Suspending this disbelief though, this is another great romp around the city with Rebus, as usual, sticking his nose into everyone’s business in order to solve both a very new and a very old crime.
Another rebus novel is always welcome and this one is no different. I thoroughly enjoyed it and will keep reading the novels as long as Ian Rankin is prepared to keep on writing them.