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Paul Auster, author of the New York Trilogy, dies aged 77

By May 1, 2024Authors, News

Paul Auster, the author best known for the critically acclaimed New York Trilogy has died, aged 77 from complications from lung cancer it has been reported today. Auster was born in 1947 and wrote 34 books during his career, all known for their very highly stylised fiction with unreliable narrators and ever shifting plotlines, written in a hypnotic voice.

Auster was born in Newark, New Jersey and by self-declaration he started writing aged 8 after he missed out on getting an autograph of his baseball hero Willy Mays because he didn’t have a pencil. From then on he carried a pencil everywhere and in a 1995 essay wrote “If there’s a pencil in your pocket, there’s a good chance that one day you’ll feel tempted to start using it,”

Another chance incident that wayed his life was watching a friend get struck by lightning just inches from him and dying instantly. Understandably, this traumatic event affected him deeply and became a recurring theme in his works. Auster even relived the incident in his novel 4 3 2 1.

Upon leaving university Auster worked a variety of jobs, married and settled down. It was the death of his father that would trigger his writing career as he eventually published his memoir, The Invention of Solitude, published in 1982.

In 1985 Auster saw his first big literary breathrough, publishing City of Glass, the first novel in the New York Trilogy, a mystery series laden with existential questions about identity. The series endures even today and is one of the many books that make Auster a rockstar of the literary world.

Paul Auster died yesterday, Tuesday, 30th April and is survived by his partner Siri Hustvedt, their daughter Sophie Auster, his sister Janet Auster, and a grandson.

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