Alistair Stuart MacLean was a Scottish novelist who occasionally wrote under the nom de plume Ian Stuart. He has over thirty books to his name, mostly high-speed action novels--spies, World War II stuff, and the like.
Born in Shettleston, Glasgow, Scotland on April 28, 1922, MacLean spoke Gaelic at home and learned English at age seven. At age eighteen, in 1941, he joined the Royal Navy. After not dying in combat, he attended Glasgow University, getting a degree in English Literature. After graduating in 1953, he got a job as a teacher. Of course, no sensible person enjoys teaching ungrateful brats, so MacLean took to writing in his spare time (actually he started in college), and several of his short stories were published in early 1954. Later that year, he began writing HMS Ulysses, which was completed in a mere ten weeks and became one of the best selling British novels of the century. His later works somewhat less successful than his earliest attempts, they generally did all right and he has a number of great successes to his name. He continued his writing until his death on February 2], 1987 in Munich, Germany.
What the guy wrote
Additionally, numerous novels featuring MacLean's fictional UNACO have been written by other authors, and several films have been based on his novels--often with him co-writing the screenplay.