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The Impossible Dead by Ian Rankin
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The Impossible Dead (original 2011; edition 2012)

by Ian Rankin

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
6854513,926 (3.86)36
Member:Amsa1959
Title:The Impossible Dead
Authors:Ian Rankin
Info:Orion (2012), Paperback, 432 pages
Collections:Your library, Crime
Rating:***
Tags:2013, crime, Scotland, police

Work details

The Impossible Dead by Ian Rankin (2011)

  1. 20
    The Complaints by Ian Rankin (Laura400)
  2. 00
    The Sea Detective by Mark Douglas-Home (YossarianXeno)
    YossarianXeno: Both novels provide accessible, compelling crime stories set in contemporary Scotland, written with a simplicity of style.
  3. 00
    O homem que matou Getúlio Vargas: Biografia de um anarquista by Jo Soares (Cecilturtle)
    Cecilturtle: the lighter side of anarchy
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» See also 36 mentions

English (42)  Dutch (2)  All languages (44)
Showing 1-5 of 42 (next | show all)
I've enjoyed Rankin's Rebus character in a number of novels, and this is my first with Malcolm Fox, head of the Complaints (similar to IAD) in the starring role. It's a promising series, but definitely not the same as Rebus.

As with many good mysteries, The Impossible Dead starts out in one direction, a fairly easy role for the Complaints team to investigate a nearby department's improper handling of a citizen accusation against one of their own, and branches off into something considerably more complex. Without spoiling the plot, I'd say the story line is well done, I like Rankin's straightforward prose, the characters are developed nicely, and the conclusion is satisfying. It's a good mystery novel. Oh yeah, I also like the references to the Scottish setting... I've been over there and enjoy hearing descriptions of places I've actually seen.

The only 'complaints' I have were the relatively slow pace of the initial 2/3 of the book. There was a lot of activity, but little obvious movement toward the conclusion. The pace picked up eventually. Additionally, although we get a very good sense of the personalities of the members of the Complaints team, it's actually a pretty boring group. They get along well, joke with one another, chase skirts a bit, but there's not the little bit of tension that goes along with a more adventurous team.

All in all, a nicely done mystery by an author who does a great job cranking them out.



( )
  gmmartz | Jun 21, 2016 |
Overall entertaining and a quick read; Malcolm Fox is likeable yet ordinary character, the storyline was just a little far-fetched but made believable. Lots of trademark "grounding" touches, like chip paper, taking you in to the moment described. ( )
  jkdavies | Jun 14, 2016 |
Ax good as the Rebus series - and that's saying something! ( )
  stevebishop | Apr 2, 2016 |
The Complaints are an unloved department in the Police who try to ferret out corruption and wrong-doing in the Force. Malcolm Fox and a small crew go to investigate a Branch to see how, or if they were involved in the cover up of a corrupt cop. There is no cooperation given, but in the middle of things there's a murder and things get decidedly murky and it isn't clear where things are going. Not as straight-forward as it starts out to be. ( )
  quiBee | Jan 21, 2016 |
A slow moving story which I did not finish. Malcolm Fox and his team from the Complaints Squad is investigating other police officers. A lot of dialogue but little action. ( )
  lewilliams | Aug 5, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 42 (next | show all)
This is Rankin, so it's only to be expected that the plotting should be tight, the dialogue quick-fire, the crimes disturbingly believable, taking place as they do in a world that is so thoroughly and obviously our own, today. What the creator of Rebus also gives us in Fox – initially in the inspector's first outing, The Complaints, and again here – is another complex, driven policeman: difficult, largely miserable and lonely, but utterly real.
 

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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0316039772, Hardcover)

The Complaints: that's the name given to the Internal Affairs department who seek out dirty and compromised cops, the ones who've made deals with the devil. And sometimes The Complaints must travel.

A major inquiry into a neighboring police force sees Malcolm Fox and his colleagues cast adrift, unsure of territory, protocol, or who they can trust. An entire station-house looks to have been compromised, but as Fox digs deeper he finds the trail leads him back in time to the suicide of a prominent politician and activist. There are secrets buried in the past, and reputations on the line.

In his newest pulse-pounding thriller, Ian Rankin holds up a mirror to an age of fear and paranoia, and shows us something of our own lives reflected there.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:24:59 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

A major inquiry into a neighboring police force sees Malcolm Fox and his colleagues cast adrift, unsure of territory, protocol, or who they can trust. An entire station-house looks to have been compromised, but as Fox digs deeper he finds the trail leads him back in time to the suicide of a prominent politician and activist. There are secrets buried in the past, and reputations on the line.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 6 descriptions

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