NEW YORK – Thom Jones, an acclaimed short story writer who drew upon family tragedy and his own struggles for such collections as “The Pugilist At Rest,” has died.
Jones died Friday in Olympia, Washington, his longtime residence, according to his literary representatives, the Wylie Agency. He was 71 and died of complications from diabetes.
“The Pugilist at Rest,” published in 1993, was a finalist for the National Book Award and its stories of violence and spiritual striving led to comparisons to Norman Mailer and Raymond Carver among others. Raised in a family of fighters, and himself an amateur boxer, Jones was scarred by the suicide of his father and he suffered for years from physical and emotional problems.
His other books included “Cold Snap” and “Sonny Liston Was a Friend of Mine.”