THE NAMING OF THE DEAD (Pol Proc-Scotland-Cont) – VG Rankin, Ian- 17th
in series
Orion, 2006- UK Hardcover – ISBN: 0752868586

The G8 conference is taking place in Edinburgh, and while all other officers have been deployed, DI John Rebus has not. During one conference event, a young politician dies. The police are calling it suicide; Rebus isn’t so certain. That investigation is supplanted by another case. A token is found in “clootie well,” a place where items are placed in remembrance of the dead. The token, and others near it, lead to the possibility of a serial killer targeting recently-released rapists. DS Siobhan Clarke is on the hunt to the riot cop who assaulted her mother during one of the G8 demonstrations.

Whenever I become discouraged reading books that are less than spectacular, and then pick up an Ian Rankin mystery, I am reminded just how good writing can be. Here Rankin has taken three story lines, against a background of true events and people, and neatly woven them into an absorbing and satisfying story with complex relationship and undertones. Cafferty is back and as manipulative as ever. I loved the music references and very subtle humor. Problems I do see are because the G8 conference was the backdrop, it will date the book very quickly and should one not have read previous books, they won’t understand the significance of Cafferty. I thought this a very good book and highly recommend it, particularly to those who have been reading the series in order.

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