We caught up with author Ian Rankin at a Salon at the home of Mystery Readers International, Mystery Readers Journal, Mystery Fanfare and Dying for Chocolate, doyenne, Janet Rudolph. He talked about his new book - Rather Be the Devil - his characters (especially John Rebus) and his home city of Edinburgh.
What we learned about his character, John Rebus.
- The name Rebus means puzzle, and he thought well if Inspector Morse is named after code, he could name his detective after a puzzle.
- One of Rankin's biggest problems writing John Rebus is that he is such a big character, "he sucks the air right out of the room." He feels the same of Big Ger Cafferty.
- Rankin has never looked at any Rebus scripts or the films because it didn't want it to change his writing.
We also learned that there's going to be RebusFest this year in Edinburgh to celebrate 30 years of Rankin's John Rebus character. The festivities will include a Rebus walking tour of Edinburgh, sessions about the books and there's going to be a Rebus pop quiz and the winner will get to go to a police station with Ian. The festival will take place June 30-July 31.
|Ian with fellow Scottish mystery writer, Catriona McPherson|
Rankin talked a bit about his home city of Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland and home of Mary Queen of Scots's castle, Holyrood Palace. He says it's a wonderful place to explore. Edinburgh has all sorts of underground streets and tunnels coming out from the castle. He was also quite proud that so many authors either came from or set their books in Edinburgh - JK Rowling, Val McDermid Alexander McCall Smith, Kate Atkinson, Alana Knight and Ruth Rendell. Scottish author, Catriona McPherson, was at the salon as well. You'll know her from her Dandy Gilver series, and multiple award winning stand alones.
He also talked about how his novels tie into the songs of Jackie Levin. You can learn a bit more about that here.
All in all, it was a great afternoon.