Thursday, March 08, 2007

"Seeing Things" by Ian Rankin

From: A Good Hanging by Ian Rankin, 1992.

Taking a scenic route home from school, three girls see a man with long hair and a beard, dressed in white, with a glow about him, and a wound in his side. The girls' account spreads until a crowd of believers gathers around the tree where the man was seen.

Rankin riffs well on the topics of religious division and the common desire to believe in miracles, delivering a story wherein, as the title implies, things aren't as they seem. What appears otherworldly is really a complex puzzle that his Inspector Rebus has just the perspective to solve.

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