Just as I was getting over Michael's death, this tragedy strikes. E. Lynn Harris died today while on a book tour on the West Coast. Harris reportedly went into cardiac arrest while staying at the Peninsula Hotel in Beverly Hills. He was 54.
For those who don't know, I am a huge fan of this man's work. His first book Invisible Life, which told the story of closeted bisexual lawyer Raymond Tyler, was extremely helpful and comforting to me during my coming out. It was as if someone took all my anger, doubts, fears, happiness and sadness and put it on paper. I could truly see myself and some of my friends in Harris' books, most of which I own and have reread multiple times, including his memoir. From Just As I Am to I Say A Little Prayer, which dealt with the black church, sexuality and homophobia (subjects I'm obviously familiar with) Harris always managed to make me care about and relate to the characters in his stories.
A true talent has been lost to the literary world. Rest in peace E.