William McIlvanney was a Scottish writer of novels, short stories, and poetry. He was a champion of gritty yet poetic literature; his works Laidlaw, The Papers of Tony Veitch, and Walking Wounded are all known for their portrayal of Glasgow in the 1970s. He is regarded as "the father of 'Tartan Noir’" and has been described as "Scotland's Camus".
The unorthodox, complex, sardonically humorous, intriguing policeman Jack Laidlaw makes his debut in an engrossing tale of murder. In Glasgow, the city with the worst slums in Europe, a city of hard men, powerful villains, bitter victims and cynical policemen, Laidlaw uses unconventional methods.