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‘Fletch’ author Gregory Mcdonald dies

Prolific writer also worked for Boston Globe

Gregory Mcdonald, known best for his best-selling “Fletch” novels, died Sept. 7 in Pulaski, Tenn. after a long battle with cancer. He was 71.

Four feature films have been made from his works: “Running Scared,” “Fletch,” “Fletch Lives” and “The Brave.”

Originally from New England, Mcdonald was a Harvard grad, twice the winner of the Edgar Allan Poe award by Mystery Writers of America, and was often credited as the inventor of the sunlight mystery. He published 26 books, 15 of which are mysteries including “Fletch,” “Flynn” and “Skylar.” 

Other works include “Safekeeping,” Exits and Entrances,” “Merely Players” and “A World Too Wide.” 

Mcdonald also worked for 7 years for the Boston Globe as a journalist, arts & humanities editor, critic-at-large columnist and member of The Editorial Board. 

His book, “The Education Of Gregory Mcdonald,” a collection of his writings while at the Globe, is being republished by Seven Stories Press in November under the new title, “Souvenirs Of A Blown World.”

“Fletch,” published in 1974, was the first in a series of novels about an investigative reporter named Irwin M. Fletcher, portrayed in the 1985 movie by Chevy Chase.  Another in the “Fletch” series, “Fletch Won” is in preproduction.

When the “Fletch” novels were first published they sold tens of millions of copies worldwide. His manager, David List,  said, he told me he “got to experience what very few writers ever get to experience — what it’s like to be a movie star.”  

He is survived by his wife, Cheryle, and five children.

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