James Herbert | Horror writer, 69

In this Feb. 3, 2000 file photo, British author James Herbert poses for a photograph in London. James Herbert, whose bestselling spine-tinglers included "The Rats" and "The Fog," died Wednesday, March 20, 2013 at the age of 69. (AP Photo/PA, William Conran, File) UNITED KINGDOM OUT, NO SALES, NO ARCHIVE
In this Feb. 3, 2000 file photo, British author James Herbert poses for a photograph in London. James Herbert, whose bestselling spine-tinglers included "The Rats" and "The Fog," died Wednesday, March 20, 2013 at the age of 69. (AP Photo/PA, William Conran, File) UNITED KINGDOM OUT, NO SALES, NO ARCHIVE (AP)
Posted: March 23, 2013

British author James Herbert, 69, whose best-selling spine-tinglers included The Rats and The Fog, died Wednesday at his home in Sussex, in southern England. His publisher did not disclose a cause.

The London-born Mr. Herbert studied graphic design, print, and photography before finding work at an advertising agency.

His first novel, The Rats - which depicted London being overrun by mutant flesh-eating rodents - took 10 months to complete and was published in 1974. It sold 100,000 copies in three weeks and was later turned into a film.

He went on to write 23 novels, selling 54 million copies around the world.

Most recent bestsellers included The Secret of Crickley Hall, which was turned into a three-part series for BBC television that aired in December.

He was named an Officer of the Order of the British Empire by the queen in 2010 - the same year he was named "Grand Master of Horror" by the World of Horror Convention. - AP

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