Re: RARA-AVIS: Re: RARA-AVIS Digest V4 #459

From: Al Guthrie (
Date: 13 Aug 2002

----- Original Message ----- From: "Marianne Macdonald" <>
> Jim, I have read them. And I've been struck before now by the
> unprocedural nature of Rebus' actions.

Ian Rankin describing the Rebus series: "No police procedural is ever realistic. A realistic police procedural would be the most boring book in the world, because police investigation is tedious and police officers are all tiny cogs in the machine; they never even get to see the whole investigation through from start to finish."

>Indeed its detailed accuracy would be almost
> irrelevant to the books.
> I have no sense that Ian is, or has ever been, especially interested
> in this kind of thing.

Ian Rankin on police procedure: "I've never made it all up. When I was working on Knots & Crosses, for instance, I went to a great deal of effort to get things right."

Ian Rankin on procedural accuracy: "They [the police] think I get the detail right about the office politics, the in-fighting, all the rest of it, and the sheer tedium that you sometimes have in an investigation. And that thrills me because I've never been a police officer, so I really am kind of making it up but somehow I seem to be getting it right. Partly that's because I do have contacts in the police now; there are people I can go and talk to although I never try and get too close to the police because I don't want the books to become just PR exercises."


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