William Mcilvanney's Tartan Noir

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Scottish writer William McIlvanney, best known for his detective novel "Laidlaw" called the first book of "Tartan Noir" by some has died at 79, at his home in Glasgow on Saturday, December 5.

William Angus McIlvanney was born in Kilmarnock to a mining family on November 25, 1936. His father was intelligent but “educated below his ability”, his mother, Helen Montgomery, a rock.

McIlvanney was an English teacher before changing career in 1975 to write full time.

He gained urgent recognition with the publication of his first novel, Remedy is None, and through other works he earned the title “Godfather of tartan noir."

He has inspired many of his successful countrymen, including Ian Rankin and Val McDermid.

Rankin, creator of the popular Rebus novels expressed his sorrow on Twitter, saying: "Dreadful news about William McIlvanney. A truly inspired and inspiring author and an absolute gent.
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His first book, "Remedy is None," was published in 1966 and won the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize in 1967.

He was also an influential poet, journalist and broadcaster, and contributed to political and sporting life in Scotland through a series of columns and TV programmes. His brother, Hugh McIlvanney, is also a respected journalist.

He won a number of awards, including the Whitbread Prize, the Crime Writers' Association's Silver Dagger, the Saltire Award and the Glasgow Herald People's Prize.

He married young and his marriage ended, painfully, in divorce. (Some of that pain is evident in The Kiln and in the Laidlaw

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