hand to murder and mayhem: l)enise Mina. Manda Scott. Paul Johnston. Val .\lcl)ermid and Quintin Jardine are among those who have joined Rankin on the nation‘s shelves.

But it is Rankin and Rehus who have had

the most dramatic impact upon the psyche ol'

the crime reader; a swil‘t glance at the current Scottish hestseller list shows that seven slots in the top twenty are filled by Rankin. ()nly Rowling and her own intrepid investigative creation Harry Potter are coming close to usurping Rankin’s domination.

But the phenomenon ol‘ his detective


steamrollers on with the May launch of

Rehustours. guided walking and bus journeys taking fans to the hooks’ locations: St Leonard’s police station. the (‘owgate

mortuary and the detective's home area ol’ Marchmont. Rankin has given his support for the tours. but he is less taken with the idea of

the TV versions: ‘I won‘t be watching it: I‘ll he going to the pub that night and make sure it's one with liurosport. ll'l want to know what it’s like. I'll ask my wilef

Previous attempts to bring Auld Reekie‘s most cantankerous cop to 'l'\/ have failed to materialise. One in the 80s had Brian Cox pencilled in for a BBC adaptation and he may

have appealed more to the Rehus purist: for

one thing. he seems closer in age and. you somehow feel. in build to Rankin‘s template than the youthl’ul and lithe llannah.

llt‘nvever. the prodtIcer/actor's love of the hooks. his position of power and

John Hannah joins a Rehus industry that includes everything from bus tours to book signings

determination to get hack onto a major telly series was always going to he too much l‘or any competitor to hear. While you may have spotted cameras and crew around the New Town at the tail end ol‘ the 20th century. you certainly wouldn‘t have seen John llannah scrahhling arottnd morgues. line-ups or surveillance operations looking for clues to discover how to play the identikit 'I‘V cop.

'ln .ir"l(‘(‘(l//IHII. I may have had to learn how to say certain Latin words and know where certain hits of the body are hut the rest is vacant: I‘m only playing the part.~ states Hannah. ‘1 don’t think Rehus as a character is particularly morose or sees himsell as being. in any sense. emotionally. spiritually or physically repressed. 'l'he tlL‘IL‘L‘IiVL‘ is

' Se“ THE LIST 15