The latest, and said to be last book, in the Inspector Rebus series by Ian Rankin is Exit Music. Rankin’s books generally feature a determined detective (Rebus), are fast-paced, and the mysteries convoluted enough to keep me guessing. In Exit Music Rebus has only days to retirement and ends up embroiled in a case involving a dead Russian poet. The implication is that any other retiring police officer would let this slide and leave it to his partner to solve, but Rebus is different. He has spent his entire life and most of his waking hours dedicated to his job, or at least drinking enough so that he can’t think about his job, and this last case is no different.
By my count there are about 19 books featuring John Rebus. I happened upon this series late, but have read four or so of the most recent books. It seems readily easy to jump into the series anywhere. I did read one of the first books in the series, Hide and Seek, and found that Rebus has always had trouble with women, alcohol, and authority. So far, my favorite book in the series is The Falls, which involves a case where tiny dolls in coffins are left at crime scenes. It is also the only book that I’ve read so far in which Rebus has a moderately successful romance.
Check out Ian Rankin’s website for a list of all the Inspector Rebus novels. I hope that Ian Rankin will continue this series set in Edinburgh, possibly with a focus on Rebus’s equally interesting partner, Siobhan Clarke.