Best-selling author Eric Jerome Dickey dies of cancer; tributes pour in

He wrote 29 novels, the last one being The Business of Lovers: A Novel

Eric Jerome Dickey, the best-selling author of books like Friends and lovers, Bad Men and Wicked Women, and documenter of Black Lives, passed away at the age of 59 on Sunday (January 3). A report in the People, as confirmed by his publicist at Penguin Random House, informs he died of cancer.

A report in carries the statement. “It is with great sadness that we confirm that beloved New York Times bestselling author Eric Jerome Dickey passed away on Sunday, January 3, in Los Angeles after battling a long illness. Eric Jerome Dickey was the author of 29 novels, and his work has become a cultural touchstone over the course of his multi-decade writing career, earning him millions of dedicated readers around the world.”

Born in Memphis, Tennessee, Dickey moved to Los Angeles for an engineering career. But he soon explored other creative options like acting and even stand-up comedy. He wrote 29 novels, the last one being The Business of Lovers: A Novel.

Tributes continue to pour in since Sunday with readers expressing gratitude and disbelief. Read some of them here.

In a moving obituary, journalist Adrienne Samuels Gibbs wrote, “Everyone has an Eric Jerome Dickey story. Whether you read his books or not, you knew about every single one of them. You, your mama or grandmama or auntie or godmother had his books on the shelf. High up. So everyone could see the colourful bindings. His name often dominated the “African American section” of Barnes and Noble, back before Amazon existed and back when bookstores were a thing. His stories titillated, tantalised, and verbalised all that was beautiful and sometimes messy about Black women, our relationships, our families, and our friendships.”

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