James Salter, the pilot turned writer, is mostly remembered for his novel "A Sport and a Pastime"
Award-winning author James Salter, who was best known for "The Hunters" and “A Sport and a Pastime”, dies at 90.
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His publisher Alfred A. Knopf confirmed the news on Friday.
Salter was born as James Arnold Horowitz in New York City on June 10, 1925. He was originally a U.S. fighter pilot who served in World War II and also flew more than 100 missions during Korean War. His first novel “The Hunters”, which he wrote under the pen name of James Salter, was based on the experiences of that war and was released in 1957. Soon after the success of his first publication, Salter resigned from the military to pursue a full time career in writing. The following year, the novel was adapted into a film of the same name, starring Robert Mitchum and Robert Wagner as two U.S. army pilots fighting in Korean War.
Salter’s other credits include The Arm of Flesh (1961) which was another novel inspired by his air force experiences, A Sport and a Pastime (1967), Light Years (1975) which brought Clifton Fadiman medal for him, Solo Faces (1979) and Dusk and Other Stories (1989) for which he has won PEN/Faulkner Award. His last novel All That Is was published in 2013.
James Salter also wrote screenplay for many independent and feature films. Downhill Racer, a 1969 film starring Robert Redford, was the one of many screenplays he wrote for the films. Other screenplays are The Appointment (1969) Three (also in the same year) and Threshold (1981) alongside one book of poetry Still Such (1988) and two memoirs Burning the Days (1997) and Gods of Tin (2004).
James Salter earned an award in literature from American Academy of Arts and Letters in 1981. He was awarded with PEN USA Lifetime Achievement Award in 2010. Salter also received PEN/Malamud Award and Windham-Campbell Literature award in fiction category in 2013.
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Michiko Kakutani, a New York Times critic said about the writing style of James Salter. “…can suggest in a single sentence, an individual’s entire history, the complex interplay of longing and fear, hope and need, that has brought about the present.”