Bret Easton Ellis
A major figure on the literary scene in the 1980s and 1990s, Bret Easton Ellis combined the blasé attitude of the wealthy and privileged with moments of astonishing violence and surrealism in his novels Less Than Zero, American Psycho and The Rules of Attraction. His own troubled childhood informed his literary outlook, in which his damaged protagonists endured the travails of everyday life through copious amounts of drugs and sex, only to discover that neither could cure their existential crises. Less Than Zero made him a critical darling, while the gory American Psycho turned many against him with its depiction of extraordinary violence against women. Loved and hated with equal fervor, Ellis' ability to spin a readable and thought-provoking story kept his work flying off the shelves, with fans always anxious for more offerings for over two decades.