TOM WOLFE died aged 89 in a Manhattan hospital on Monday, his agent Lynn Nesbit confirmed, but what was the Bonfire of the Vanities author’s cause of death?
By SAMANTHA MASTERS
The non-fiction writer had been hospitalised with an infection, however his cause of death is currently unknown.
Tom was famous for pioneering "New Journalism" during his critically acclaimed career as a reporter.
His books included The Right Stuff and Bonfires of the Vanities.
The Right Stuff was based upon the Mercury Seven astronauts, which was made into a 1983 film of the same name.
Tom, who was known for wearing his signature white suits, created his first book Bonfires of the Vanities with an idea focusing on New York City.
"I looked at the whole city first," he told National Public Radio.
"I wanted to do New York High and Low.
“I figured Wall Street could stand for the high end, and also some of the life on Park Avenue. And at the low end, there would be what you find caught up in the criminal mechanism in the Bronx.
“Once I zeroed in on these areas, I would then find the characters."
His book, Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, was based on an account of a band of hippies who travelled across the US doing LSD.
Despite the drug being featured in his work, the writer never took the substance himself.
“I probably have given that impression in the past, but I didn’t," he told The Telegraph in 2016.
"I felt it was really far too dangerous to take a chance – and they didn’t try to pressure me.”
Tom was also a talented baseball player and played semi-professionally whilst studying in college.
He began working as a journalist for the New York Herald Tribune in 1962.
He also authored two collections of articles and essays, Radical Chic & Mau-Mauing the Flak Catchers and The Kandy-Kolored Tangerine-Flake Streamline Baby.
Tom was born in Richmond, Virginia, and got into writing early as editor of his school newspaper.
During the course of his career, Tom wrote for the likes of Harper’s Magazine and Esquire.
He was married to Sheila Wolfe and the couple have two children together, Tommy and Alexandra.
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