NYPL Remembers Author and Library Lion Paul Auster

By NYPL Staff
May 1, 2024
Black and white photo of Paul Auster outside on a stoop

Photo: Matthew Spitz

The New York Public Library is saddened to hear of the passing of Paul Auster, award-winning novelist, screenwriter, poet, essayist, and translator. Auster was also a “Library Lion,” an honor bestowed by NYPL to distinguished individuals for outstanding achievements, as well as a passionate library enthusiast and supporter of The New York Public Library. “Libraries aren't in the real world after all," he once wrote. "They are places apart, sanctuaries of pure thought.” Auster's writing has touched—and will continue to touch—countless readers. He had a lifelong connection to New York City, and his New York Trilogy—comprised of City of Glass (1985), Ghosts (1986), The Locked Room (1986)—has been hailed as the first postmodern detective story. Auster's vision and work live on through his remarkable and extensive archive, held in NYPL’s Berg Collection of English and American Literature. The Library is proud to preserve his legacy for generations of students, researchers, scholars, and dreamers for decades to come. 

Below, learn more about the Paul Auster archive at NYPL, browse a selection of his work from our catalog, and find links to recordings of Library events featuring conversations with Auster.

Auster in the Archives

At approximately 575 boxes and covering approximately the years 1963-2022, the Paul Auster Papers include:

  •  material related to the composition and publication of all of his works of fiction published during his lifetime
  • extensive files related to his poetry, nonfiction work, translation work, early writings and film adaptations
  • promotional materials and artwork
  • extensive correspondence files with leading authors, as well as friends and family, agents and publishers, translators, readers, students, and organizations. Writers and recipients of correspondence include Pedro Almodóvar, Samuel Beckett, J.M. Coetzee, Don DeLillo, Jonathan Safran Foer, Jonathan Lethem, Michael Ondaatje, Ron Padgett, Claude Royet-Journoud, Salman Rushdie, and others.
English, German, and Italian versions of Paul Auster's New York Trilogy

English, German, and Italian editions of 'The New York Trilogy.'