Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  E. Lynn Harris  

Pen Name: None


Born: 1955 in Flint, Michigan

Died: 2009 in Los Angeles, California

-- E. Lynn Harris on WorldCat --

Illinois Connection

Harris lived in Chicago. His book, ''And This Too Shall Pass'', was set in Chicago.

Biographical and Professional Information

E. Lynn Harris was an American author who rose from self-publishing to best-selling status. He was best known as a pioneer of gay black fiction. He authored ten consecutive books to make ''The New York Times'' Best Seller list. After graduating with honors from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville in 1977, Harris went to work as a sales executive for IBM. Five years later, he quit his job as a computer salesman and used $25,000 of his own money to print ''Invisible Life.'' It was published as a Doubleday paperback in 1994 and quickly soared to number one on the Blackboard Bestseller List of African American titles.Harris also edited two books, ''Freedom in the Village: Twenty-five years of Black, Gay Men's Writing'' in 2004 and ''Gumbo: A Celebration of African American Writers'' with Marita Golden in 2002. He founded the E. Lynn Harris Better Days Foundation, a nonprofit company that provides support to aspiring writers and artists.

Published Works

  • Invisible Life, Consortium Books, 1991
  • Just As I Am, A Novel, Doubleday, 1994
  • And This Too Shall Pass, Doubleday, 1996
  • If This World Were Mine, Doubleday, 1997
  • Abide With Me, Doubleday, 1999
  • Not A Day Goes By, A Novel, Doubleday, 2000
  • Any Way the Wind Blows, Doubleday, 2001
  • A Love of My Own, Doubleday, 2002
  • What Becomes of the Brokenhearted, A Memoir, Doubleday, 2003
  • I Say a Little Prayer, Doubleday, 2006
  • Just Too Good To Be True, Doubleday, 2008
  • Basketball Jones, Doubleday, 2009
  • Mama Dearest, Doubleday, 2009 - Released Posthumously
  • In My Father's House, Doubleday, 2010 - Released Posthumously
  • No One in the World: A Novel, Simon and Schuster, 2011 - Released Posthumously

Selected Titles At Your Library

Invisible life /
ISBN: 0786250550. OCLC Number:

Thorndike Press,. Waterville, Me. :. 2003.

A young man graduating from college discovers his bisexuality and spends the next eight years alternately trying to face and deny the truth of his passions.

Just as I am :
ISBN: 0786250542. OCLC Number:

Thorndike Press,. Waterville, ME :. 2003.

Raymond, a young African American lawyer from the South, struggles to come to terms with his sexuality and AIDS, while Nicole, an aspiring actress and singer, attempts to find a genuine love relationship.

And this too shall pass :
ISBN: 0786263636. OCLC Number:

Thorndike Press,. Waterville, Me. :. 2004.

In the locker rooms and newsrooms of Chicago, four lives are about to intersect in romance and scandal. At the heart of the story is the celibate Zurich, a rookie quarterback for the Chicago Cougars whose trajectory for superstardom is interrupted by a sexual-assault charge by Mia -- a sportscaster with her own sights on fame. With his career in jeopardy, Zurich hires Tamela, a high-powered attorney, to defend him, while Sean, a gay sportswriter, covers the story and uncovers his heart.

If this world were mine :
ISBN: 0786258950. OCLC Number:

Thorndike Press,. Waterville, ME :. 2003.

Reuniting nearly a decade after their graduation from Howard University, four friends and their spouses play a game called "If This World Were Mine," a diversion that brings to light sexual tensions, dark secrets, and hidden animosities.

Abide with me /
ISBN: 0786250623. OCLC Number:

Thorndike Press,. Waterville, Me. :. 2003.

Any way the wind blows /
ISBN: 078625792X. OCLC Number:

Thorndike Press,. Waterville, Me. :. 2003.

Left at the altar a year before, jilted Broadway bombshell Yancey Harrington Braxton stages her comeback -- this time as a recording star. But has she forgiven ex-fiance John Basil Henderson, or does she still need to even the score? As Yancey's star continues to rise, her past threatens to catch up with her and she fears someone may be after her. In a wicked little dance of revenge, Basil and Yancey struggle to keep their lives on track, while a chorus of unforgettable characters either come to their aid or make matters worse.

A love of my own :
ISBN: 140007553X. OCLC Number:

Doubleday,. New York :. ©2002.

After Zola Norwood meets media mogul Davis McClinton on a New York-bound flight, he makes her a couple of offers before they even land. One is editing his hot new urban style magazine Bling Bling. The other is more personal.

What becomes of the brokenhearted :
ISBN: 0385495064. OCLC Number:

. .

The author recounts his life, from his childhood in Arkansas as a lonely closeted gay boy, through his years at the University of Arkansas and employment at IBM, to his hard-earned success as a bestselling author.

No one in the world /
ISBN: 1439178097. OCLC Number:

Simon & Schuster,. New York :. 2011.

Follows the experiences of a gay social climber and his career criminal brother, who reunite thirty years after being separated as children.