Crime writer baffled by tiger kidnap plot
The Insider's spies were at a Belfast Festival talk by crime novelist Ian Rankin last weekend.
Rankin, creator of Edinburgh Detective Inspector John Rebus, told the audience with some excitement about a report he read that day in the Belfast Telegraph.
He said it involved shots being fired in Northern Ireland during an attempt to "kidnap a tiger".
In fact, the report was about a tiger kidnapping, which means a robbery involving a kidnapping - for instance, when a bank manager's family is held hostage.
Alas, Ian, it does not mean a tiger was actually involved.
Rankin, meanwhile, revealed during his talk that he lives just two doors down from another best-selling Edinburgh crime novellist, Alexander McCall Smith.
Rankin has strong family ties to Northern Ireland and spent Christmas 2008 here.
And McCall Smith used to live in Belfast and teach at Queen's University.
It's a small world, after all.