Excerpt from A Question of Blood by Ian Rankin, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

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A Question of Blood

An Inspector Rebus Novel

by Ian Rankin

A Question of Blood by Ian Rankin X
A Question of Blood by Ian Rankin
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  • First Published:
    Feb 2004, 416 pages

    Jan 2005, 544 pages


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"Get out then, the pair of you." Templer made a show of reaching for some paperwork. "Soon as there's news from the fire investigators, I'll let you know."

"Very decent of you, boss," Rebus said, rising to his feet. Back in the CID room, he had Siobhan slide a hand into his jacket pocket, bringing out a small plastic jar of pills. "Bastards measured them out like gold," he complained. "Get me some water, will you?" She fetched a bottle from her desk and helped him wash down two tablets. When he demanded a third, she checked the label.

"Says to take two every four hours." "One more won't do any harm." "Not going to last long at this rate."

"There's a prescription in my other pocket. We'll stop at a chemist's once we're on the road."

She screwed the top of the jar back on. "Thanks for taking me with you."

"No problem." He paused. "Want to talk about Fairstone?" "Not particularly." "Fair enough." "I'm assuming neither of us is responsible." Her eyes bored into his.

"Correct," he said. "Which means we can concentrate on helping Bobby Hogan instead. But there's one last thing before we start. . ." "What?" "Any chance you could do my tie properly? Nurse hadn't a clue." She smiled. "I've been waiting to get my hands around your throat." "Any more of that and I'll throw you back to the boss."

But he didn't, even when she proved incapable of following his instructions for knotting a tie. In the end, the woman at the chemist's did it for him while they waited for the pharmacist to fill his prescription. "Used to do it for my husband all the time," she said. "God rest his soul."

Outside on the sidewalk, Rebus looked up and down the street. "I need cigarettes," he said.

"Don't expect me to light them for you," Siobhan said, folding her arms. He stared at her. "I'm serious," she added. "This is the best chance of quitting that you're ever likely to have." He narrowed his eyes. "You're enjoying this, aren't you?" "Beginning to," she admitted, opening the car door for him with a flourish of her arm.

Copyright © 2003 by Ian Rankin.  All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced in any form without permission in writing from the publisher.

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