According to William Grimes in today’s New York Times:
James Purdy, whose dark, often savagely comic fiction evoked an American psychic landscape of deluded innocence, sexual obsession, violence and isolation, died on Friday in Englewood, N.J. He was 94 and lived in Brooklyn Heights.
Purdy was the author of numerous novels, the best known of which are Malcolm and The Nephew, as well as short stories and plays. His work was praised by such prominent literary figures as Dorothy Parker, Edith Sitwell, Gore Vidal, and Tennessee Williams. Nevertheless, he never enjoyed commercial success. For his part, Purdy disdained the literary establishment, opining that being well known was inversely related to a writer’s merit.