LONDON — Scottish writer William McIlvanney, best known for his detective novel “Laidlaw” — called the first book of “Tartan Noir” by some — has died at 79.

His agent Jenny Brown said he died at his home in Glasgow on Saturday after a short illness.

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McIlvanney, born in the town of Kilmarnock, was the son of a miner. He became an English teacher before changing careers in 1975 to write full time.

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He is known for the “Laidlaw” trilogy, a crime series featuring Inspector Jack Laidlaw. Other works included “The Big Man,” made into a film starring Liam Neeson, as well as poetry and journalism.

Among his fans was Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, who tweeted: “His writing meant so much to me when I was growing up. RIP.”