The Complaints by Ian Rankin.
Paperback: 480 pages
Publisher: Reagan Arthur / Back Bay Books(November 2, 2011)
*Starred Review* In the wake of Exit Music (2008), the concluding volume in his celebrated John Rebus series,Rankin has picked a most unlikely new hero. Edinburgh cop Malcolm Fox works for “the Complaints,” the despised internal-affairs division whose job it is to investigate other cops. Succeeding the Rebus novels, starring the quintessential maverick copper, with a series built around a cop-hunting cop seems akin to J. K. Rowling following Harry Potter with seven extra-thick novels about a classroom tattletale. And, yet, Rankin pulls it off, making Fox the fall guy in an elaborate police conspiracy and causing him to join forces with a detective under suspicion of peddling child porn. The strange-bedfellows angle drives the interpersonal dynamics here—and augurs well for future installments—as Fox, working off the books, investigates the murder of someone very close to home and attempts to turn the frame-up on its end. Some crime writers keep writing the same series with different characters, but Rankin deserves credit for going another way altogether. Fox is a good and quiet citizen compared to Rebus (he doesn’t drink and listens to birdsong on the radio, not classic rock), but Rankin doesn’t hold any of that against his new hero, proving that you can build complex, highly textured, series-worthy characters from the most unlikely of raw materials.
This is my first Ian Rankin book. From what I understand he's very popular in England and seems to be up in the "rankings" now in America.
However, this was not his most popular character of Rebus, but the book was a good read anyway. I think I tend towards liking Historical mysteries better or stories from England, Scotland and Ireland from back in the 1800's. So again I say, this was an enjoyable book, but for me not top of the list. It would be more to the liking of those who enjoy "basic" crime stories like a series on television. (not including Mysteries of Laura or Forever!)
Briefly I will say that Malcolm Fox is a detective in the "Complaints Dept." which is to find "dirty cops" and the proof that they are indeed needing to be investigated.
It was a good enough read that if I come across other Ian Rankin books at my thrift stores I would certainly pick them up. I do have one other of his books called Exit Music which the back of the books states that it is Rebus's last case before "retirement""... guess I should wait and see if I can find other Rebus books before I read about him retiring huh?!
Anyway It was a quick read, a book in which you can get side tracked and have no problem picking up where you left off even if it weren't the beginning of a new chapter.
If you come across one of Ian Rankin's books... give it a try!