Farewell, John Rebus

2008-12-10

I finished Exit Music this morning. I’ve been reading Ian Rankin’s novels for nearly a decade now starting, perhaps ironically, just after leaving Edinburgh for London. I still think Black and Blue is the best, although Tooth and Nail is my favourite. I heard Ian Rankin say once that as he’d just moved to London and was feeling miserable, he’s inflict the same onto Rebus. As I was hating London also, I emphasised greatly with the book. Also, it’s got a keystone cops, comedy car chase at the end. Both author and detective moved back to Edinburgh fairly shortly afterwards. I never did, although I did leave London.

The last book is good and a suitable ending. Like many of his more recent books, there is a random, unresolved element to the plot. But it’s exciting, page-turning and a suitable finish for the series.

Having said that, it’s probably a good thing that it’s coming to an end. The books got lots of moody, black and white shots of Ian Rankin, with readers notes and meaningful questions about the use of metaphor for reading groups. Doesn’t detract from the novel, but is, really, deeply pretentious.

Originally published on my old blog site.