'City Of Joy' author Dominique Lapierre passes away

Dominique Lapierre
Dominique Lapierre. File photo: Sanjay Ahlawat / Manorama

French author Dominique Lapierre, who wrote classics that chronicled the life and culture of nations like India, the USA, Jerusalem and France, among others, passed away in Paris on Sunday. He was 91.

His wife Dominique Conchon-Lapierre told the French newspaper 'Var-Matin' on Sunday, that he died of old age.

Lapierre was born in Chatelaillon, France on July 30, 1931. He collaborated with American writer Larry Collins to write six books. 'Is Paris Burning' is the most celebrated among them. 'Or I'll Dress You in Mourning' (1968), 'O Jerusalem' (1972), 'Freedom at Midnight' (1975), 'The Fifth Horseman' (1980), and 'Is New York Burning?' were the other contributions by the writers.

'City of Joy' released in 1985, reflected the dogged life of a rickshaw puller in Kolkata, then Calcutta, and was a huge success. A movie in the same title starring Patrick Swayze and Roland Joffe, was released in 1992.

Pratibha Patil- Dominique Lapierre.
Former Indian President Pratibha Patil (L) giving away the Padma Bhushan to Dominique Lapierre. File photo: Vijay Verma / PTI

Lapierre contributed a major part of his royalties from 'City of Joy' to support humanitarian programmes in India.

The writer was awarded Padma Bhushan, the third highest civilian award in India in 2008.

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