Ian Rankin

Sue Lawley's castaway this week is the writer Ian Rankin. Ian Rankin is an award-winning writer of crime fiction and the creator of the Scottish detective John Rebus who has featured in 17 novels to date.

Born in Fife, Rankin came from a working-class background in a coal-mining town where he says he spent most of his childhood trying to "look like he fitted in". In his bedroom he would live out a fantasy life, writing poems, stories and creating strip-cartoons. He admits there are many parallels between himself and Rebus - they lived at the same Edinburgh address, both are fond of a drink and now they even share the same taste in music, though unlike Rebus, Rankin has never smoked. However all that is about to change; Rebus has reached the age of retirement in the police force and Rankin's next novel will be the last in the series.

[Taken from the original programme material for this archive edition of Desert Island Discs]

Favourite track: Solid Air by John Martyn
Book: A Dance to the Music of Time by Anthony Powell
Luxury: Pinball machine (traditional American one)

Release date:

Available now

45 minutes

Last on

Fri 21 Jul 2006 09:00


Role Contributor
PresenterSue Lawley
Interviewed GuestIan Rankin

Featured in...

The Desert Island Discs podcast

The Desert Island Discs podcast

Subscribe or download individual episodes.

Listen to over 2,000 programmes


Desert island discs 75th anniversary 1920x1080

Read the surprising things we've learned about some stand-out castaways.

The 75th anniversary of Desert Island Discs

Desert Island Discs at 75 1920x1080

Featuring David Beckham, the funniest and most moving moments, animations and quizzes.

The Lark Ascending – The People’s Desert Island Disc

The Lark Ascending – The People’s Desert Island Disc

Why does Vaughan Williams’s masterpiece appeal to so many castaways?