'The Bonfire of the Vanities' author died at 88 after battling an infection and pneumonia.

AceShowbiz - Author and journalist Tom Wolfe has died, aged 88. The man behind bestsellers "The Bonfire of the Vanities" and "The Right Stuff" passed away in Manhattan, New York on Monday, May 14.

Reports suggest he was battling an infection and pneumonia in hospital when he died.

Born in Virginia in 1931, Wolfe began his career as a journalist at the New York Herald Tribune in 1962, where he became a pioneer of New Journalism - a style of reporting in which a writer immerses themselves in a story.

"The Right Stuff", his account of the Mercury 7 space programme, was adapted for the big screen in 1982 by director Philip Kaufman, while Wolfe's first fictional novel, "The Bonfire of the Vanities", was an instant critical hit upon its release in 1987. It was also adapted for the big screen by director Brian De Palma.

Wolfe was also famous for his dapper 'Southern gentleman' look, often appearing in public in a pristine white suit, white homburg hat, and two-tone shoes.

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