Video report by ITV News correspondent Nina Nannar
Best-selling US author Tom Clancy, who thrilled readers with vivid descriptions of soldiers and spies in novels including "The Hunt for Red October" and "Patriot Games," has died at 66, his publisher said.
Clancy, whose books sold more than 100 million copies, died on Tuesday in his hometown of Baltimore, Maryland, Penguin said.
"I'm deeply saddened by Tom's passing," said David Shanks, a Penguin executive who had worked with Clancy from the start of his writing career through the upcoming "Command Authority," which is due out in December.
The cause of his death was not immediately disclosed.
Clancy's works closely tracked Americans' security fears, moving from Cold War face-offs to terrorist attacks and both fascinated readers with their high-stakes plots and enthralled military experts with their precise details.
The books also inspired Hollywood blockbuster films including "Clear and Present Danger," starring Harrison Ford, and a series of video games, published by Ubisoft Entertainment SA.
Clancy grew up in Baltimore and in 1969 graduated from Loyola University in Maryland.
In a 1992 interview with The Baltimore Sun, he attributed much of his success to being "lucky," saying that he had a normal middle-class American upbringing.
"I was a little nerdy but a completely normal kid," Clancy told the paper. "Mom and Dad loved each other. It was like 'Leave it to Beaver.'"