20 Apr 2009

Cult author JG Ballard dies at 78

7:45 am on 20 April 2009

Author JG Ballard has died aged 78 after a long illness.

His agent Margaret Hanbury said he had been ill "for several years" and died on Sunday morning.

Despite being referred to as a science fiction writer, Ballard said his books were instead "picturing the psychology of the future".

His most acclaimed novel was Empire of the Sun, based on his childhood in a Japanese prison camp in China. It was made into a film by Steven Spielberg.

Ballard grew up amongst the ex-patriot community in Shanghai. During World War II, at the age of 12, he was interned for three years in a camp run by the Japanese.

He later moved to Britain and became a full-time writer in the early 1960s.

His works included: Crash, Super-Cannes and Millennium People.