Sir Ian Rankin ‘not sure’ what star character Rebus would make of knighthood

The Independent
The Independent

Sir Ian Rankin has said he is “honoured” to receive a knighthood, but is not sure what his star character John Rebus would make of it.

The author has been made a knight in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for services to literature and charity.

“It is amazing to be honoured in this way as we celebrate Her Majesty The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee . It may not make writing my next book any easier but it is gratifying to be recognised both for my crime novels and the work I do for charity,” Sir Ian said.

“I’m not sure what Detective Inspector John Rebus would make of it – he’d almost certainly tell me not to get too big-headed. I’ll do my best, while pouring a glass of something refreshing.”

The University of Edinburgh graduate, 62, is known across the world for his crime novels focused on Rebus, which are mostly based in and around the Scottish capital.

Knots & Crosses, the first in the series, was published in 1987 and Rebus now features in 26 books. They have been translated into 22 languages and have become bestsellers on several continents.

In 2019 the award-winning crime author donated his archive of 50 boxes and manuscripts to the National Library of Scotland, which have now been opened to the public.

The items stretch from 1972 to 2018 and include correspondence with literary figures, publishing companies and police officers.

In 2002, Sir Ian was made an OBE for services for literature, and a year later he was awarded an honorary doctorate from his former university.

He has since received honorary doctorates from the Open University and the University of Hull.

In 2015 he was elected a fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, and the year after was elected as a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.

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