The Rankin Quiz

Test your knowledge

Think you are the ultimate Rankin fan? Take our quiz and find out.

(You can find the answers at the end of this page)

  1. What is the name of Ian Rankin’s as-yet unpublished first novel?
  2. Ian references his own student punk band in Black and Blue – what’s its name?
  3. For which book did Ian win the 2004 Edgar Award?
  4. Which actor was first in the frame to play Rebus on TV?
  5. Which American detective was the inspiration for Rebus’s first name?
  6. Knots & Crosses is inspired by which classic novel?
  7. Which main character in the later part of the Rebus series first appeared in a minor cameo in Tooth and Nail?
  8. What was the name of Rebus’s police sidekick in Knots & Crosses? (Hint: His name taken from another famous detective)
  9. Which Rebus novel opens with a gruesome murder in the real Mary King’s Close in Edinburgh?
  10. Which Rebus novel started out as a trilogy?
  11. Which football team does Siobhan Clarke support?
  12. Which band asked Ian to write the lyrics to the closing song on their second album?
  13. Where was the premiere of Ian’s play Dark Road, co-written with Mark Thompson?
  14. Rebus met Jill Burchill during the course of an investigation, and she became a love interest for a few books: where did she work?
  15. The title of a later novel, Standing in Another Man’s Grave is a mondegreen of a Jackie Leven song – what is a mondegreen?
  16. In which novel did Rebus have a close encounter with George W. Bush?
  17. What is the official name of the police department that Malcolm Fox works in when we first meet him?
  18. Rebus was born in Scotland but his grandfather came from a European country – which country?
  19. What is the name of Ian’s standalone novel set in the art world that was dramatised for TV starring Stephen Fry?



  1. Summer Rites
  2. The Dancing Pigs
  3. Resurrection Men
  4. Leslie Grantham
  5. John Shaft
  6. The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde by R. L. Stevenson
  7. Big Ger Cafferty
  8. Brian Holmes
  9. Mortal Causes
  10. Set in Darkness
  11. Hibernian
  12. Saint Jude’s Infirmary
  13. Royal Lyceum Theatre, Edinburgh
  14. National Museum of Scotland
  15. A misheard lyric – the correct line is ‘Standing in another man’s rain’.
  16. The Naming of the Dead
  17. Complaints and Conduct Department
  18. Poland
  19. Doors Open

Reveal Answers