Set in Darkness

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Set in Darkness
First edition
Author Ian Rankin
Country Scotland
Language English
Genre Detective novel
Publisher Orion Books
Publication date
Media type Print (Hardback & Paperback)
Pages 415 pp
ISBN 0-7528-2129-6
OCLC 60611212
Preceded by Dead Souls
Followed by The Falls

Set in Darkness is a 2000 crime novel by Ian Rankin. It is the eleventh of the Inspector Rebus novels. It won the 2005 Grand Prix du Roman Policier (France)[1] under the title Du fond des ténèbres. The title comes from the poem "The Old Astronomer" by Sarah Williams. In an interview, Rankin linked the quote to the rise of a restored Scottish Parliament and the redemption of the Inspector in the novel.[2]

Plot summary[edit]

The Scottish Parliament is about to reopen in Edinburgh (in 1999) after 300 years. Detective Inspector John Rebus is in charge of liaison, as the new parliament is in his patch. While on a tour of Queensberry House, which is to be incorporated into the new Parliament, a fireplace where legend has it a youth was burned to death is opened up and another, more recent murder victim is found. Then, a prospective MSP called Roddy Grieve is found murdered, and Rebus is expected to find instant answers.


  1. ^ "Ian Rankin". The British Council. Retrieved 7 January 2013. 
  2. ^ Pierce, K. Kingston (January 2000). "January interviews Ian Rankin: The Accidental Crime Writer". January Magazine. Retrieved 28 August 2015.