Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Hanging Garden (Inspector Rebus, #9)” as Want to Read:
The Hanging Garden (Inspector Rebus, #9)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Hanging Garden (Inspector Rebus #9)

4.06  ·  Rating Details ·  6,783 Ratings  ·  219 Reviews
Paperback, 349 pages
Published September 15th 1999 by Minotaur Books (first published 1998)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Hanging Garden, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Hanging Garden

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg LarssonAnd Then There Were None by Agatha ChristieAngels & Demons by Dan BrownRebecca by Daphne du MaurierIn Cold Blood by Truman Capote
Best Crime & Mystery Books
454th out of 5,430 books — 12,239 voters
Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha ChristieThe Complete Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan DoyleAnd Then There Were None by Agatha ChristieThe Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha ChristieThe Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle
The Best British Crime/Mystery Fiction
95th out of 878 books — 1,029 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Mar 12, 2015 Rob rated it it was amazing
I never saw it coming, but somehow mystery became my genre of choice. I read very little horror or fantasy anymore and, as I’ve written elsewhere, I’ve only dabbled minimally in science-fiction. I’ve never read a western I liked – unless we’re going to count Cormac McCarthy as a writer of westerns, in which case, okay, I like him – and I suppose most of my reading fits into that very nebulous non-genre of literary fiction. You know: T.C. Boyle, Russell Banks, Dave Eggers, Nick Hornby, Chuck Pala ...more
Aug 18, 2016 Ammar rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In this 9th book in The Rebus series, John Rebus is at his most humane. His daughter is a target of an accident. He is in the midst of a drug lord war.. who are killing a lot of innocents and targeting each others' properties. Rebus is balancing all those, and on the prowl to find and hunt a Nazi war criminal who is a professor in a university.

A shorter novel than its predecessor, but straight to the point in its noir-ness and crisp dark prose.

Rebus is becoming one of those characters that one
Aug 07, 2014 Lori rated it it was amazing
Shelves: crime-fiction
Another excellent Ian Rankin novel that ranks high for me among the other books I've read in this genre. The character of John Rebus continues to appeal; his keen awareness of his shortcomings and failures and his unwavering loyalty to those he cares about and sense of duty to right, however possible, the wrongs of the world, make for continuously entertaining reading. This story focuses on gang wars and the collateral damage of such activity. It places Rebus in the interesting position of align ...more
Jul 13, 2016 Mirjam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"He looked at the city sometimes and saw a beauty his cynicism couldn't touch."

I really like this series. I can't tell the past storylines apart, but I always enjoy them while I'm reading. It's basically exactly like your favourite gritty tv crime series. Plus the fantastic bonus of it being set in Scotland. The whole disgruntled, washed-up policeman thing works so well with Esinburgh as its backdrop. The plot this time might be one of my favourites. It has organised crime, but also reflected on
May 14, 2016 RJ rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: u-k, crime-fiction
#9 in Rankin's Rebus series. The main character has gotten more fleshed out, as well as his musical tastes (one-liners from mostly classic rock songs are sprinkled in). Several stories going on at once in this one; his daughter and estranged wife figure prominently in one; two gangsters, one newcomer and the charismatic but deadly Cafferty. The latter is in prison and his cat-and-mouse relationship with Rebus is nothing new to this series.

A man wanted by Nazi hunters, a Bosnian girl forced into
Aug 14, 2011 Andrew rated it liked it
I love Rankin novels -- if no other reason the setting of Edinburgh and his attractive hero. But I thought this one was overly complicated. With Japanese and Russian gangsters, Nazi war criminals, trafficked prostitutes, pensioners ferrying drugs, hit and run accidents, and the usual family troubles, one wonders where Rankin was going with this one. I would have liked it better I think if he'd really built on one of these themes in more depths. For example, drawing together the Eastern European ...more
Peter Kobryn
Sep 13, 2015 Peter Kobryn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-fiction
An enjoyable tradition is the annual reading of a Rebus novel while on holiday and the Hanging Garden fulfilled this role this year very well.

Rattled through in two days this was an engrossing complex story and possibly one of the best of the Rebus series that I have read to date.

A number of significant plot themes are developed, many of them sufficient for a novel of their own – the growing turf war between big Ger Cafferty and the new kid on the block, the War Crimes investigation that Rebus
James Smith
Apr 25, 2013 James Smith rated it really liked it
I'm reminded of why I love Rebus.

...A tough, uncompromising cop who doesn't always (ie never) plays things by the book butGoddammithegetsresults!! Maybe once he entered the force with illusions of a better world but by now his cynicism is ingrained. He doesn't care about pleasing his bosses, he doesn't care about playing nice, this loose cannon just cares about what's right, even if the line between good and bad is so fine, it's invisible. Unable to take a break from his work, his only respite
May 01, 2015 Steve rated it it was amazing
In this grim but excellent thriller, Rebus is plunged in to a mystery involving World War II sins, local turf wars, and Japanese gangsters. Rebus's soul-searching uncovers more self-awareness about his own life, as well.
Kevin Marsh
Great book. This is the fist Ian Rankin book that I have read and it will definitely not be the last. Great characters and a fantastic plot.
I love the dark humour that surrounds Rebus and I can't wait to get my hands on another of Mr Rankin's books.
Shirley Schwartz
Aug 22, 2013 Shirley Schwartz rated it really liked it
Ian Rankin's writing ranks right up there with Colin Dexter and Reginald Hill in my opinion. I am a great fan of this genre of mystery and this is probably the best book that I've read so far that depicts gang rivalries and outright gang wars. Rebus finds himself drawn right into the middle of the biggest gang war that his city of Edinburgh has ever seen. This to me is Rankin's best novel so far in this series. I can only hope that the others that follow will maintain this high standard. I could ...more
Linda  Branham Greenwell
It's okay. Probably really good if you like criminal underworld stories. Just not my "cup of tea"
Riju Ganguly
Nov 19, 2014 Riju Ganguly rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Exactly when does one realise that he (I am soliloquizing strictly from a man's perspective, hence apologies towards others) has grown old? Is it that moment, when the last glass is pushed away out of one's own choice? Is it that moment when a risque dress on a girl makes one protective, rather than lusty? Is it that moment when one suddenly understands that he has liked a thriller NOT because of all the action therein, but because the protagonist was an aged, flawed, haunted, conscientious, yet ...more
Jun 19, 2014 Helen rated it it was amazing
You don't have to read the Rebus books in order since Rankin gives you the situation/time for each one. Sammy (Samantha) is 24 in this and has a journalist boyfriend who is researching a book on criminal history. In the course of his work on a wannabe crime lord Rebus meets a prostitute from Sarajevo. She speaks no English and this creates problems later in the novel. At the same time Rebus is looking into the possibility that a retired university professor is actually a former Nazi hiding out f ...more
May 13, 2015 Christina rated it really liked it
This was another good Rebus, although not as great as its immediate predecessor, "Black and Blue." Like Black and Blue, we got a lot of development for Rebus, who does really seem like, well, let's just say it would be exhausting to be him. One thing that distracted me towards the end, though, was (view spoiler)
Aman Mittal
Mar 04, 2015 Aman Mittal rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Hanging Garden by Ian Rankin is the ninth novel in John Rebus series. I have never felt that I should read Rankin’s Rebus series in chronological order. I feel, by starting in the middle, going straight back to the first of books and then steadily moving forward, is what works for both John Rebus and me.

The novel opens on Guy Fawkes night as DI Rebus meets his daughter for a meal. As usual, Rebus is involved in the case of the alleged war criminal and lean about the crimes he may have commi
Oct 19, 2014 Sally rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
John Rebus is a man intensely aware of his own shortcomings. This book reveals a little more of the detail of his marriage and why it failed. The mystery is that it lasted as long as it did! He has his own moral compass, which is more to do with making the world a safer place than the rule book, to which his superiors would like him to adhere. He doesn't get suspended in this instalment, but it's close! There are a number of interlinking threads but it doesn't become a maelstrom of chaos. He com ...more
Sep 17, 2015 Anna rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-mystery
Ρέμπους νο 9,
όπου τον βρίσκουμε πάλι με τη ζωή του άνω κάτω, την προσωπική του ζωή, σχεδόν ανύπαρκτη - ως ένα σημείο τουλάχιστον γιατί μετά παρα-ασχολείται με αυτή, αλλά δυστυχώς όχι για ευχάριστο λόγο - και πολέμιο του οργανωμένου εγκλήματος της Σκωτίας. Εννοείται ότι πάει γυρεύοντας να σκοτωθεί, δεν διστάζει να συστηθεί σε αυτούς που κυνηγάει, όπου μάλιστα τους ενημερώνει ότι θα τους κλείσει μέσα!!!

Τα αστυνομικά βιβλία όμως δίνουν και ένα στίγμα της κοινωνίας, ξεσκεπάζοντάς την από την ωραιοφά
Kathleen Hagen
The Hanging Garden, by Ian Rankin, a-minus, Narrated by Michael Page, Produced by Brilliance Audio, downloaded from

Rebus becomes involved in trying to solve the problem of whether an elderly German male is really a Nazi criminal saved after the war and allowed to live in England. He also becomes involved in what has the likelihood of becoming a gang war between his old nemesis and a younger newer player on the field. This new gang, nastier than the other one, is involved with slaver
Chuck Slack
Aug 26, 2013 Chuck Slack rated it it was amazing
Another strong book in the series. I enjoy how Mr. Rankin incorporates several storylines that seem to be exclusive but tie together in the end. The Hanging Garden certainly does this well. A great read again! I highly recommend this series.
Ian Brydon
Nov 07, 2015 Ian Brydon rated it really liked it
This was the ninth novel featuring Detective Inspector John Rebus, and the reader finds him caught in the middle of a gang war in Edinburgh between the established forces of Maurice Gerald Cafferty ("Big Ger"), Rebus's long-standing foe, recently arrived upstart, Tommy Telford.

Rebus is not too concerned by the prospect of the gangsters killing each other off, though it is only a matter of time before innocent bystanders are caught in the crossfire. Besides, he has other matters demanding his att
Mar 30, 2009 Liza rated it it was ok
Not plausible. Japanese, Russian, Scottish gangsters with a possible WW2 war criminal in the background ...
Annoying and silly
Aug 21, 2016 Katherine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, fiction
*3.75 stars.
*Good as always, but I enjoyed the previous book in this series much more. I hate to admit it, but it might have something to do with the fact that Rebus is sober in this one. Some quotations I appreciated:
“...the thin black cord from a pair of earphones dribbling down his neck” (3).
“Rebus had been taught at school that there were four distinct seasons, had painted pictures of them in bright and sombre colours, but his native country seemed not to know this” (23).
“Huge portraits of s
Kathleen Fowler
May 05, 2014 Kathleen Fowler rated it liked it
This ninth book in the Rebus series finds our hero, never much of a team player, walking a dangerous line between the law and the bad guys. He is on the verge of collusion with the enemy in the name of seeing justice done, if that’s what it takes. This one is a little disjointed as there are three story lines: the human trafficking of refugees from Sarajevo, the suspected Nazi war criminal hiding under a new identity, and the hit and run incident involving Rebus’ daughter. Who would’ve thought t ...more
Feb 27, 2009 Beau rated it really liked it
Good story line and character development. Rebus is great.
Jun 19, 2014 Timothy rated it really liked it
Rebus' daughter Sammy is hit by a car and the DI cannot help but think it may be linked to a case he is working on, but which one? Rebus is simultaneously investigating whether a octogerian is a former Nazi and attempting to stave off a gang war. To succeed Rebus the still sober detective brings together a cast of characters including Jack Morton, members of the major crime squad, special branch and his frenemy Big Ger. Meanwhile Patience reappears in his life and we find out just how much he lo ...more
Sep 03, 2010 Dorothy rated it liked it
Inspector Rebus can't help getting personally involved in his cases, but when he rescues a Bosnian refugee who has been forced into being a prostitute, his personal involvement reaches a new high water mark. The girl bears an uncanny resemblance to his daughter, Sammy. Rebus has to find a way to help her.

Meantime, Edinburgh has become a battleground for two rival bad guys and their gangs and it seems that there may be some foreign groups mixed in as well. As if that were not enough to keep him b
Jan 12, 2013 Andreasoldier rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another intricate mystery from Rankin starring Rebus.
The hanging garden of the title may refer to Babylon, but it also refers to a war crime the dogged detective has been assigned to look into. Is the old German who takes care of the graves at the local cemetery the same man who took part in the hanging of the town leaders and the massacre of more than 700 residents of a French village during World Two.
He also decides to protect a Bosnian woman brought into Edinburgh illegally as a lady of night
Aug 23, 2016 J rated it liked it
Shelves: british-locale-s
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Paul Darcy
Jan 09, 2012 Paul Darcy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
by Ian Rankin, published in 1998.

This is the ninth Inspector Rebus novel and is not less fantastic than the last eight. In this volume we get to see more of Rebus’s family relationships, and it’s interesting to say the least.

Maybe this is a strange comparison, but I find Rebus akin to Captain Kirk in that their first loves are not other people, but a Starship in Kirk’s case or the cases in Rebus’.

There is a new player in Rebus’s town, and he is acting the bigshot. He is Tommy Telford, cool as a
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Last Seen Wearing (Inspector Morse, #2)
  • Bones and Silence (Dalziel & Pascoe, #11)
  • The Hanging Valley (Inspector Banks, #4)
  • Vendetta (Aurelio Zen, #2)
  • Dying Light (Logan McRae, #2)
  • Poetic Justice (A Kate Fansler Mystery #3)
AKA Jack Harvey.

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; the Rebus books are now translated into 22 languages and are bestsellers on several continents.

Ian Rankin has been elected a
More about Ian Rankin...

Other Books in the Series

Inspector Rebus (1 - 10 of 21 books)
  • Knots and Crosses (Inspector Rebus, #1)
  • Hide and Seek (Inspector Rebus, #2)
  • Tooth and Nail (Inspector Rebus, #3)
  • Strip Jack (Inspector Rebus, #4)
  • The Black Book (Inspector Rebus, #5)
  • Mortal Causes (Inspector Rebus, #6)
  • Let It Bleed (Inspector Rebus, #7)
  • Black and Blue (Inspector Rebus, #8)
  • Dead Souls (Inspector Rebus, #10)
  • Set in Darkness (Inspector Rebus, #11)

Share This Book

“Strip the veneer, and the world had moved only a couple of steps from the cave.” 0 likes
“boffins” 0 likes
More quotes…