Fiction Book Authors Who Died In 2015

Last Updated on December 3, 2015

A topic about authors who died recently is sad and not easy to put together, however I think it is worth remembering and honoring all the great writers who gave so much to book readers all around the world throughout the years while writing continuously, relentlessly and with a great passion for their craft.

Sadly 2015 has seen the passing of too many great authors, many having several books at one point or another featured in various top 100 and top 10 lists in major publications.

Colleen McCulloughColleen McCullough (June 1, 1937 – January 29, 2015)  is probably best known for her book The Thorn Birds, which was made into the successful TV mini series featuring Richard Chamberlain, Rachel Ward and Christopher Plummer.

An Austrian novelist, she lived several years in the US before moving to Norfolk Island. Throughout her career she wrote 25 novels, with her last one Bittersweet published in 2013. Colleen McCullough died at the age of 77 after a long illness.

Terry PrachettSir Terry Pratchett (April 28, 1948 – March 12, 2015), the prolific British author of the Discworld series is remembered with love and reverence by everyone who treasures fantasy novels. His massive 40 volume about a world closely contained in a flat disc resting on the backs of 4 elephants and a turtle has taken the world by storm, transforming it one book at a time. During his life he wrote over 70 novels with the latest one being completed the summer before. The author died 8 years after being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease at the age of 66.

Ruth RendellRuth Rendell (February 17, 1930 – May 2, 2015) was a popular British crime mystery writer, internationally acclaimed for her Inspector Wexford series. With over 60 books published in 4 decades, she sometimes wrote under the pen name Barbara Vine. The Wexford series was turned into a successful TV series which lasted for over a decade starting from the late 1980s.

Her latest novel, Dark Corners, was published in October, after her passing on. She died at the age of 85 following a severe stroke at the beginning of the year.

James SalterJames Salter (June 10, 1925 – June 19, 2015) was a novelist, short story writer, and screenwriter popular for his insightful views in books such as “Light Years” and ”A Sport and a Pastime”. He wrote 6 novels, his memoir, writings about food and travel and two story collections during his writing career.

The author who was apparently in good health, collapsed and died while at the gym in Sag Harbor. He was 90 years old.

E L DoctorowE. L. Doctorow (March 02 1952 – July 24 2015) was an American historical fiction writer with published novels including “Ragtime,” “Billy Bathgate”, “World’s Fair” and “The March”.

Most of his books evolve around New York and its surroundings. During his life he wrote 12 novels, several short stories and shorty story collections, along with various essays. The author died of lung cancer at the age of 84.

Ann RuleAnn Rule (October 22 1930 – July 26 2015) is possibly the best known true crime fiction author the world has ever known. Her book The Stranger Beside Me about her colleague Ted Bundy, one of the biggest serial killer in the US, has made her an instant international cult figure.

Over the years she wrote more than 30 popular true crime books, all evolving around well known murder cases, bringing much of the little known details to life. She was always around law enforcement either writing books about crime and criminals, or working as a police officer. The author died at the age of 83 while battling with various health issues, including a severe heart attack.

Jackie CollinsJackie Collins (October 04, 1937 -September 19, 2015) was a popular English novelist who captured the hearts of many young women over the years with her steamy romances. Many consider her the queen of romance novels. Her first book, The World Is Full of Married Men was banned in various country for being too much sex-filled for the tastes of the critics.

Over 4 decades she wrote 32 novels, each of them a tour the force in their own right. Her surviving sister is the soap opera actress Joan Collins. Jackie Collins died of stage 4 breast cancer, of which she was diagnosed 6.5 years ago.

Henning MankellHenning Mankell (February 3, 1948 – October 5, 2015), the popular Scandinavian mystery author of the Kurt Wallander series passed away with lung and throat cancer at the age of 67. The Kurt Wallander series has been picked up and adapted into a TV series featuring Kenneth Branagh

The author wrote a total of 11 books, with the latest one The Troubled Man being translated to English in 2011. He was a great mystery author who will be sorely missed.

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