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A Heart Full of Headstones: The Gripping New Must-Read Thriller from the No.1 Bestseller Ian Rankin

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The books featured on this site are aimed primarily at readers aged 13 or above and therefore you must be 13 years or over to sign up to our newsletter. He has consciously aged John Rebus in real time, so may feel that he is reaching the end of the line as far as his plausibility as an investigative lead is concerned. When Haggard is questioned by DI Clarke, however, he claims he becomes violent because he has PTSD from the situation at Tynecastle Station.

Gordon Kent knows his subject at first hand and the expertise shows on the page: high stakes, pounding tension and the best dogfights put on paper. John Rebus, long retired from the force, is enjoying a quiet pint at his local, with faithful dog Brillo asleep at his feet. She’s a really good detective with great emotional intelligence and she’s got this slightly fraught home life, having to organise carers for her mum, and is a young woman who cycles everywhere because that’s the only way to get around speedily.There are secrets buried or so they thought that if they be brought to light more than reputations are at stake. Crime boss Big Ger Cafferty continues to make his presence felt, despite being in a wheelchair after being shot, as he asks Rebus to locate a former employee of his, ostensibly so that he can express his remorse. Rebus shares top billing this time with Siobhan Clarke, the eager Detective Inspector who has been his long time friend.

I did have an ARC so maybe the final version will redeem itself, but I'd rather have never read a John Rebus again than read this one. As the story opens, the incumbent of that role has been found dead in the foyer, having suffered a heavy head wound. However Rebus still has all his smarts and this shows as he takes on Cafferty, Malcolm Fox and the entire Tyneside police station.I won’t be presumptuous and refer to the esteemed author as Sir Ian, but because he is British, and part of the more decent, civilized northern sector of that isle I will congratulate him on his noble hood.

Even Rebus himself seems to be somewhat tainted by historic association with the one time leader of the motley station crew. The book in question, A Heart Full of Headstones, took shape in my head in January and I started writing it in February.Rankin has used a common literary device where he starts the story near what is probably the end of the story. The world has just reopened after the Covid pandemic, and Rebus is avoiding going to the doctor about his deteriorating health, prefering to pretend it’s just heartburn. In this 24th book in the 'Inspector Rebus' series, the detective is retired, but still sticks his nose into police cases. Haggard is willing to do whatever it takes to avoid charges, including hanging out his colleagues to dry, he is willing to air the station's dirty linen, naming names, including a barely concealed allusion to Rebus himself.

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