Tributes pour in for bestselling US author Eric Jerome Dickey

The 'Thieves' Paradise' author died aged 59 after a long battle with cancer

Tributes are pouring in for bestselling Before We Were Wicked author Eric Jerome Dickey, who died earlier this week after long battle with cancer. He was 59.

The US author died on Sunday, January 3. However, his death wasn't confirmed until Wednesday, January 6, when his publisher Dutton Books took to Twitter to announce the news:

"It is with great sadness that we confirm that beloved New York Times bestselling author Eric Jerome Dickey passed away on January 3. He will be greatly missed by us at Dutton and by the readers and fans he adored."

Several celebrated authors as well as fans took to social media to pay tribute to the writer, who was known for his page-turners that also told romantic stories.

"I am truly saddened to hear about the passing of Eric Jerome Dickey," Bad Feminist author Roxane Gay wrote on Twitter. "His were some of the first novels I ever read about black people that weren't about slavery or civil rights. He was a great storyteller."

Anika Noni Rose, an actor and singer most famous for voicing Disney's first Black princess, Tiana, in The Princess and the Frog, tweeted: "RIP Eric Jerome Dickey. An open spirit. A genre shifting writer."

“He was such a part of my early 20s and a part of why I write today,” Twitter user Black Tzedek wrote. “Sad. Glad he can rest now.”

Dickey published 30 novels in his lifetime including Sister, Sister, Thieves' Paradise, and The Business of Lovers. His books have been translated into several languages including in French, Polish, and Japanese.

Dickey also penned the graphic novel Storm, which tells of a romance between the Black Panther and Storm from X-Men. His novel The Son of Mr Suleman will be published posthumously this year.

“Heartbroken to hear we lost Eric Jerome Dickey,” Twitter user Dana K wrote. “Thanks for all the stories. Prayers to family and friends.”