Detective Inspector John Rebus, born in the Fife region, Scotland, can be said to belong to a long tradition of paternal Scottish hard men. A natural leader whose gruff exterior and fierce will to succeed in his field belies a benevolent nature. According to a Sunday Herald article in 2006 Ian 'Stu' Stewart was the inspiration for the John Rebus character:
"Scottish crime writer Ian Rankin has revealed that John Rebus, the star of 15 novels set in the grimy underbelly of the nation's capital, may have more to do with the Rolling Stones than any detective could have surmised. The award-winning novelist admits during a new Radio 4 series exploring the relationships between crime writers and their favourite music that he took some of his inspiration for the unruly inspector from the "sixth Stone", Ian Stewart".
Read more about Rankin, Rebus and Stu on this wiki page.