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The Complaints by Ian Rankin

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Featured on The Book Show on Sky Arts on 5 November 2009.

Rankin has moved on to a new protagonist in the form of Malcolm Fox and has set him up in a department which bodes well for what we are sure will be terrific, future plotlines, the Complaints and Conduct department - the police who police the police. If you were worried Rankin wouldn't maintain the standard of his Rebus novels then rest assured he hasn't let us down. Brilliant characters and plots continue, all set in his beloved Edinburgh.

If you like Ian Rankin you might also like to read books by Peter Robinson, Mark Billingham and Stuart MacBride.

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The Complaints by Ian Rankin

'Mustn't complain' - but people always do...Nobody likes The Complaints - they're the cops who investigate other cops. Complaints and Conduct Department, to give them their full title, but known colloquially as 'The Dark Side', or simply 'The Complaints'. It's where Malcolm Fox works. He's just had a result, and should be feeling good about himself. But he's a man with problems of his own. He has an increasingly frail father in a care home and a sister who persists in an abusive relationship - something which Malcolm cannot seem to do anything about. But, in the midst of an aggressive Edinburgh winter, the reluctant Fox is given a new task. There's a cop called Jamie Breck, and he's dirty. The problem is, no one can prove it. But as Fox takes on the job, he learns that there's more to Breck than anyone thinks. This knowledge will prove dangerous, especially when a vicious murder intervenes far too close to home for Fox's liking.


'Like all good crime novels, it takes you to places that you did not know existed - and, even if you did, would not wish to visit. Fox, brave and kind beneath his world-weary exterior, makes for an excellent guide. Rankin's legion of fans will have no grounds for complaints'

'Getting to know this man [Fox], an intriguing mix of apathy and action, is almost like a courtship - each new situation reveals something that makes the reader want to know yet more'
Rebecca Armstrong THE INDEPENDENT

'Rankin delivers, without the help of Rebus, an excellent cop novel full of action, good dialogue, well-crafted characters and an authentic backdrop'
Marcel Berlins THE TIMES

'Rankin's touch for literary elements outwith genre expectations continues to be excellent. Even a brief paragraph about Fox's childhood contains as much nostagic fizz as a bubble of Irn Bru caught in a spluttering kid's nostril'

'On the evidence of The Complaints it looks as if Fox will be just as sure-footed a guide to the city as his grizzled predecessor'

'As is usually the case with Rankin, the plot is more layered than a tiramisu and here offers a depth that incorpoates teh impact of the credit crunch and the subsequent collapse of property values in Scotland'
Declan Burke IRISH TIMES

'Rankin is a master at what, for me, is one of the important aspects of a crime novel: the integration of setting, plot, characters and a theme which, for Rankin, is the moral dimension never far from his writing. Here it is unambiguously stated on the cover of The Complaints: wh decides right from wrong?'

'Gordon Brown, who knows a thing or two about what it's like to live up to the memory of a charismatic predecessor, ought to give Fox his endorsement straight away'

About the Author

Ian Rankin

Ian Rankin was born in the Kingdom of Fife in 1960, Ian Rankin graduated from the University of Edinburgh in 1982, and then spent three years writing novels when he was supposed to be working towards a PhD in Scottish Literature. His first Rebus novel was published in 1987, and the Rebus books are now translated into thirty-six languages and are bestsellers worldwide. Ian Rankin has been elected a Hawthornden Fellow, and is also a past winner of the Chandler-Fulbright Award. He is the recipient of four Crime Writers' Association Dagger Awards including the prestigious Diamond Dagger in 2005. In 2004, Ian won America's celebrated Edgar Award for Resurrection Men. He has also been shortlisted for the Anthony Award in the USA, won Denmark's Palle Rosenkrantz Prize, the French Grand Prix du Roman Noir and the Deutscher Krimipreis. Ian Rankin is also the recipient of honorary degrees from the universities of Abertay, St Andrews, Edinburgh, Hull and the Open University.A contributor to BBC2's Newsnight Review, he also presented his own TV series, Ian Rankin's Evil Thoughts. Rankin is a number one bestseller in the UK and has received the OBE for services to literature, opting to receive the prize in his home city of Edinburgh, where he lives with his partner and two sons.

Author photo © Hamish Brown

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Book Info

Publication date

3rd September 2009


Ian Rankin

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Orion (an Imprint of The Orion Publishing Group Ltd ) an imprint of Orion Publishing Co




Thriller / Suspense
Crime / Mystery
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