20?/series. A young woman runs her car off a deserted road outside Edinburgh. Ordinary mortals might accept the set-up, but John Rebus notices things and his long-honed suspicious mind starts putting odd facts together. Soon after, a robbery-turned-murder links to the young woman. Rebus, recently returned to the force (although with a demotion which he takes with amazing grace), finds his own way through the tangle of clues. (Tough cookie DI Sioban Clarke is in this story, too; wish we'd have a stand-alone starring her.) Another stellar mystery that takes us back into Rebus's early days on the Edinburgh police force, when he was a newbie at a free-wheeling police station whose officers took the law into their own hands. Decades on, is the past is about to catch up with them? As always, tight plotting, but not as tight as in other Rebus stories, and a denouement that isn't really up to Rankin's high standards. Still, an excellent read from the UK's top-selling mystery author. It's a 4.
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