NEW YORK (AP) -- Prolific mystery writer Donald Westlake has died at the age of 75.
Westlake's wife, Abigail, tells The New York Times the author collapsed as he headed to a New Year's Eve dinner while on vacation in Mexico. His wife says he apparently had a heart attack.
Westlake is considered one of the most successful mystery writers in the United States. He won three Edgar Awards and was nominated for an Academy Award for screenplay writing for "The Grifters."
Westlake wrote more than 100 books. He used his own name and several pseudonyms, including Richard Stark, Tucker Coe, Samuel Holt and Edwin West.
Westlake continued to write. His next novel, "Get Real," is scheduled to be released in April 2009.
Information from: The New York Times, http://www.nytimes.com
(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)