Let it Bleed
Struggling through another Edinburgh winter Rebus finds himself sucked into a web of intrigue that throws up more questions than answers. Was the Lord Provost's daughter kidnapped or just another runaway? Why is a city councillor shredding documents that should have been waste paper years ago? And why on earth is Rebus invited to a clay pigeon shoot at the home of the Scottish Office's Permanent Secretary? Sucked into the machine that is modern Scotland, Rebus confronts the fact that some of his enemies may be beyond justice.
Reviewed on 5th February 2014
The seventh Rebus mystery sees the Edinburgh detective investigating several suicides that seem disconnected, but which he has a hunch aren't as coincidental as his colleagues think. It unravels from there into a wide ranging and complex plot that feels a little too reminiscent of earlier books in the series.
It's almost certainly the story with the most different threads for Rebus to tie together, and this leads to a fascinating plot that keeps moving at a good pace - there wasn't time to pause and reflect almost before more scenes threw more clues my way. My copy has reading group discussion questions listed in the back, but I didn't feel like I'd been left an opportunity to even think about some of points they brought up as the plot rolled on.
The 'soap' aspects - ongoing character development - of the story felt rather more believable in this novel - perhaps because Rebus' relationships seemed more natural, unforced and his home life more in keeping with his character traits (and to be honest the traditions of the alcoholic single detective). I've come to quite enjoy seeing where his life will lead next in the same way I've enjoyed finding out how Adrian Mole's life has changed as new editions of his diary are published.
One of the best in the series up to this point, and certainly one that's encouraged me to hurry towards reading book eight.