Doris Lessing, the Nobel prize-winning, free-thinking, world-traveling, and often-polarizing author of The Golden Notebook and dozens of other novels that reflected her own improbable journey across the former British empire, has died. She was 94. Her publisher, HarperCollins says that the author of more than 50 works of fiction, nonfiction and poetry, died peacefully early today.
Lessing explored topics ranging from colonial Africa to dystopian Britain, from the mystery of being female to the unknown worlds of science fiction. She won the Nobel Literature prize in 2007. The Swedish Academy praised Lessing for her "skepticism, fire, and visionary power." In an interview the following year, the always-frank Lessing called her win a "bloody disaster," saying that it left her no time to write. "All I do is give interviews and spend time being photographed," she complained, urging young writers to "use it while you've got it because it'll go. It's sliding away like water down a plughole." The BBC has a full obituary here. (Read more Doris Lessing stories.)