Rebus, a hard-boiled detective, doesn't really like the idea of retirement. The man simply can't drop everything and chill when there's still an unsolved case lying on his desk. So, he goes through the facts and the evidence once again, trying to figure out the real truth behind it. A woman was killed a while ago at an expensive hotel - that's pretty much all Rebus knows of it.
And, just as the old-timer starts to ask around about this long-buried murder, a fresh body "pops up" in the city. The detective's investigation brings him back to Clarke and Fox - his BFFs, old pals, and buds. They're trying to make sense of a brutal beating of a gangsta. This violent attack makes them believe that Cafferty, a legendary and notorious crime lord is back at it again, just like Rebus himself.
The mysterious case from the past links up to the crimes of the present day, and, as Rebus connects them with a thin thread, he learns that he's not the only fella in the world who's interested in this 40-years-old murder. There are some powerful folks who will do anything just to keep the secrets hidden. Rebus wants to reveal the truth about that day, but he might just end up dead in a ditch somewhere before he even cracks the half of it.
As far as perilous and hazardous cases go, this one's right there on top of the list. Will this be the last case Rebus works on? Rather Be the Devil is a mighty story of power, secrets, cover-ups, corruption and murders in Edinburgh. If you love mystery thrillers, this book will most certainly NOT disappoint you. There are enough twists and turns to get you entangled in your own "educated guesses".