I like reading British authors—there’s a different tone about their writing. Ian Rankin writes about Police in Edinburgh, Scotland. The British do have their own version of English. When I started this book, I had just finished editing a book, so I was aware of every altered spelling and punctuation, which doesn’t usually bother me. As I got into the story, those differences disappeared for me.
This story features three of Rankin’s characters he has followed in previous novels. Sometimes when protagonists span multiple books they become flat and boring. But he keeps his characters interesting. John Rebus is retired but can’t resist coming back to work as a consultant for the police, after someone takes a shot at mob boss Cafferty in his home. Malcolm Fox has left the Complaints Bureau and is not fitting in well with his new department. He’s assigned to a visiting crew who are tracking a Glasgow crime family who have come to Edinburgh. Detective Inspector Siobhan Clarke, friend of Fox and Rebus, is working a case of the murder of a senior prosecutor. All three are working separate cases, which become entangled. Even when they are supposedly working together they each go off in their separate ways, following their instincts.
Rankin writes good characters, intricate plots, and makes you feel at home in the Scottish countryside.