The leaders of the free world descend on Scotland for an international conference, and every cop in the country is needed for front-line duty...except one. John Rebus's reputation precedes him, and his bosses don't want him anywhere near Presidents Bush and Putin, which explains why he's manning an abandoned police station when a call comes in. During a preconference dinner at Edinburgh Castle, a delegate has fallen to his death. Accident, suicide, or something altogether more sinister? And is it linked to a grisly find close to the site of the gathering? Are the world's most powerful men at risk from a killer? While the government and secret services attempt to hush the whole thing up, Rebus knows he has only seventy-two hours to find the answers.
A book with this many plot elements risks becoming amorphous and overcomplicated. But Mr. Rankin doesn t get lost that way. In his backhanded, reluctant way Rebus winds up uniting all the book s loose ends, and seeing how he accomplishes this is a pleasure. Besides, The Naming of the Dead isn t really about its detective plot. It s about Rebus s taking stock, not only of his own past but also of the world around him.