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Dead Souls (Inspector Rebus, #10)
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Dead Souls (Inspector Rebus #10)

4.02  ·  Rating Details ·  5,479 Ratings  ·  204 Reviews
When an author is successful as Rankin has been with his tough and idiomatic Scottish thrillers, a problem sets in after several books: how to keep the formula fresh.

Rankin has delivered a powerful series of books featuring his beleaguered Detective Inspector John Rebus, and while never less than gripping, a certain tiredness seemed to be setting in. Thankfully, Dead Soul

477 pages
Published by Orion (first published 1999)
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Aug 26, 2016 Ammar rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The tenth book in the Rebus series picks up from the end of the previous book.

Rebus is faced with a moral dilemma of dealing with a freed pedophile

And at the same time he is trying to keep an eye on a serial killer that returned to town

And a son of a friend of his is missing

Three cases for rebus to play with and takes us on a your of Edinbrughs underbelly

And loving all at once
Mike Gabor
Jul 25, 2013 Mike Gabor rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: british-mystery
I haven't read a Rebus novel that I haven't enjoyed but this one is so far the best. Rebus is really multi-tasking in this one. He's outing a pedophile, looking for the son of an old flame, also trying to figure out what's going on with a recently released killer. But, this book is much more than Rebus trying to solve these crimes. We learn about Rebus' teen years, the girl that got away, the friend he felt that he let down. It really shows why Rebus is the way he is today. It also shows him won ...more
Apr 03, 2015 Rob rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars.

As a high school teacher, there were many times a student's behavior would become crystal clear after meeting his parents. I'd run into problems with work ethic or attitude or whatever, and I'd think, "What's the deal with this kid?" Then I'd meet Mom and/or Dad in a parent conference and immediately realize, "Oh, of course that's why he [fill in the blank]." It would be some sort of weird mirror image, where son's classroom surliness was reflected in Dad's obvious displeasure at comin
Aug 07, 2014 Lori rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-fiction
Another enjoyable read in this excellent series. Detective John Rebus is one of the best characters in detective fiction today. Maddening and likable all at once, his many flaws only serve to make him one of the more believable serial characters. The plot in this one moves along at a great pace beginning with Rebus heartlessly and selfishly "outing" a paedophile trying to turn his life around. Rebus does try to redeem himself by trying to help the unfortunate individual in the end but never over ...more
Nov 18, 2013 Bill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's been awhile since I read a Rebus mystery and it was a welcome return to his world. Gritty, interesting mystery peopled with an varied, excellent cast, headed by cynical, war weary Detective Inspector John Rebus of Edinburgh's crime squad. A variety of issues/ possible crimes featured in this story, but while there were twists and turns, the stories seemed believable. I enjoy Rebus very much; a character perfect in his imperfections, questioning whether being a police officer remains viable, ...more
pierlapo  quimby
Mi ero lasciato invogliare dal commento di Ellroy: "il fondatore e il re incontrastato del noir scozzese" (che, in effetti, col senno di poi, lascia il tempo che trova).
Molto tempo dopo ho letto in un'intervista che l'unica ragione che spinge Ellroy a commentare i libri altrui è il fatto che viene pagato profumatamente per farlo.
Carolyn (in SC) C234D
John Rebus is such a great character. I wish he wasn't such a tortured soul, but then he wouldn't be the same detective, I guess. Much is going on in this book, and you are not sure of how everything resolves until the end, if even then.
Dec 27, 2012 Peggy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Peggy by: Judith Burke recommended Rankin in general, not this particular book
This is my first Ian Rankin mystery, and I have ended up enjoying it. I've been a fan of British crime fiction for a while, but admittedly women writers like Jacqueline Winspeare, Dorothy L Sayers and Louise Penny (OK, Canadian). I just happened to end up with a second hand copy of Dead Souls first, following a friend expert in the genre recommended Rankin - afterwards discovering that a few readers think this one doesn't meet his usual standards. I will have to try other earlier ones to compare ...more
After recently visiting the Edinburgh of Isabel Dalhousie in "The Careful Use of Compliments", I decided to linger a while. I've always liked Edinburgh, but I felt that I wanted to see a different side of it than the all thought and little action world of Isabel. Well, John Rebus is just the chap for that! No one could accuse him of living in a world of little action. As for thought, Rebus thinks a lot and usually gets to the answer to his problems in the end, but he is also known to act hastily ...more
Aman Mittal
Mar 08, 2015 Aman Mittal rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
This is my fifteenth John Rebus novel, and before starting this book I had a question in my mind. When an author as successful as Rankin has been with his tough and idiomatic Scottish thrillers, a problem sets in after several books: how to keep the formula fresh?

One thing is that, after reading a John Rebus' book, I have an anguished feeling of visiting Edinburgh, see all those places describe the author with my own eyes. The series is set in Edinburgh and Rankin displays an unnerving knowledge
May 14, 2016 Ron rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: u-k, crime-fiction
Strong entry in the Rebus series. A released pedophile becomes the target of Inspector Rebus, but things may not be as black and white as they seem. An old flame from Fife sees Rebus about her missing son who disappeared after clubbing in Edinburgh. To add to things a sadistic criminal is exported back from the U.S. to Scotland, and becomes a deadly nemesis to Rebus.

Fifth in the series that I've read (not in order) and here are some other things of note:

- Rebus' lady friend Dr. Patience is flesh
Dec 11, 2012 Jeremy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ever since I saw the BBC documentary charting Ian Rankin writing a novel I consider these tales in a different way. In that documentary Ian said that he sometimes gets to page 430 and realizes that there was some other person who "could have done it". No longer do I expect the tale to unravel in a planned way and that only adds to the enjoyment of Rankin's books. In this book one of Rebus's pals leaps to his death (or does he?)from an Edinburgh landmark at the same time that a time served pedoph ...more
Jill Hutchinson
Sep 04, 2012 Jill Hutchinson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Rebus story moves on and just gets darker with each book. These are not "feel good" stories and the continuing characters in the series have weaknesses and secrets and the ghosts of the past are haunting them all. In this entry,as in most of the Rebus books, there is a lot going on and none of it provides easy answers for Rebus and his mates. He is assigned to watch the comings and goings of a recently released and very clever serial killer who is also suspected in the murder of the niece of ...more
Diane Dickson
May 28, 2013 Diane Dickson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was an even more tortured Inspector Rebus, indeed as the series has progressed I feel that I have watched him descend into a sort of hell largely of his own creation. He feels things deeply and in this one there are so many barbs coming at him from many angles that it is difficult to believe he is still left standing.

The book is very topical at the moment exploring as it does paedophilia amongst other transgressions and it is interesting that Mr Rankin says that he seeks to change Rebus' v
Shirley Schwartz
Aug 22, 2013 Shirley Schwartz rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found this book's plot to be a bit loose and disjointed and it left some unanswered questions. It also had me questioning how we got to a particular point at times. But the Rebus character is still great. I like the way Rankin depicts his uncertainties and foibles. While we read of these we never lose sight of the fact that he is a very brilliant copper. I didn't much care for one of the villains in this book and I didn't like how that particular thread was left at the end of the book because ...more
Aug 13, 2014 Sara rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Sara by: most recently, Claude
Truly one of the very best Rebus books.
I remembered part-way through that I had read it several years ago, at a time when I was preoccupied and didn't give it my full attention. It needs that since the plot is complex, lots of characters, many locations in Edinburgh and the surrounding area to keep track of. But Rankin has done a fantastic job of fleshing all of them out so that, if you are attentive, it all makes perfect sense.
I did really want to SHAKE one of the characters - the poor newsman
Mar 16, 2012 Mandy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2012
I enjoyed this book a lot, probably due to the many story strands that are weaved together. The book isn't an easy read - in part as I am not a non-Scottish person or familiar with Edinburgh, but also beacause there so many stories happening, all including so many people. I did enjoy the exercise of remembering what was happening in each tale, and guessing if there would be any overlap, and if so, where it may occur. Inspector Rebus is also an interesting character, I enjoyed being in his compan ...more
Jul 17, 2016 Michael rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: detective, audio, 1990s
When I was reading more Ian Rankin, I suggested him to my father, who got about halfway through one book and said he had to stop before the grim pessimism led him to jump off a bridge. Well, it's not a series with a sunny outlook, by any means, and Inspector Rebus is not an altogether sympathetic central character. This is a well-crafted thriller with three parallel lines of plotting, a bit dated by some of the hot-button social issues of the late nineties. 3 1/2 stars rounded up.
There is a lot going on in this book, maybe too much, but I found the various story lines to be quite compelling and though Rebus seems to be going through a particularly dark period this was one of the better books in the series so far.
Apr 27, 2014 Cindy rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: delete-able
Liked rest of series, not this one. It was read well by Ian Howard, that doesn't save it. Cannot recommend, so won't.
Feb 03, 2011 CynthiaA rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: pre-2008
It was ok. Kept my interest. A good beach or airplane mystery. Kinda dark though, but all Ian Rankin books are.
Feb 21, 2012 Mandy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime
Sucked me straight back into Rebus' world. What a complex and compelling character - and how black is grey?
Mar 09, 2015 Claude rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The best Rebus I've read. It kept me reading and wanting to know, to the very end.
Margaret Pagnotta
This book didn't actually end as much as it just ran out of pages. Major things left unresolved.
Jim Whitefield
Jan 07, 2017 Jim Whitefield rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another great John Rebus story. That's all there is to say really. If you like detectives who are human rather than fake heroes, and you love Scotland, you will enjoy all of Ian Rankin's stories of DI Rebus. Rankin never disappoints. This is book 10 in the series. I would start with book 1, as there are some backstories and sub-plots that unfold along the way which make Rebus more interesting and human.
Paula Dembeck
Mar 11, 2015 Paula Dembeck rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rankin weaves four narratives in this tenth addition to the John Rebus series.

Darren Rough is a convicted pedophile who has done his time and been released into a community that has not been advised he is joining them. While he was doing his time, he went to the meetings and attended therapy, so the experts believe he is not at risk to reoffend. Several are trying to help him reintegrate into a society that is disgusted, wary and fearful of these types of criminals.

At the same time, Rebus is cal
Jan 19, 2017 Chris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, rankin-ian, rank
Rebus just can't pull it together. His relationship is a disaster, his friendships are almost nonexistent, and his addictions are once again on the rise. Rankin has a wonderful ability to continue mining his character's soul for an always fresh look at what should by now be a long done storyline.
Wilfred Goodwin
Nov 19, 2016 Wilfred Goodwin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another entertaining tale. Ian Rankin never disappoints.
Rowland Bismark
Dead Souls offers both souls and bodies that are dead. As usual, there's a lot threatening to deaden John Rebus' soul, but he soldiers on; one of the more impressive aspects of this novel is how precariously he's balanced, always so near going over the edge. "I think something's gone bad inside you", an acquaintance diagnoses early on, and for much of the book Rebus himself isn't so sure that she's wrong.

A colleague isn't as lucky (or strong ?) as Rebus, literally going over an edge (a cliff, in
Sep 21, 2016 Katherine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, fiction
“He’d planted himself on benches and against walls, wiping his brow even though Edinburgh’s early spring was a blood relative of midwinter” (7).
“Animals would not build zoos, would have no need of them. Rebus was wondering why humans needed them” (9).
“And this was where all policeman learned an early lesson that truth and justice were far from being allies, and that victims were something more than sealed bags of evidence, recordings and statements” (68).
“It had all been simple enough once upon
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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 22 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)
  • The Hanging Garden (Inspector Rebus, #9)
  • Set in Darkness (Inspector Rebus, #11)

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