Roth had been especially prolific in the years leading to his 2012 retirement from writing, turning out novels almost every two years.
But Roth, who died Tuesday at age 85, leaves a remarkable storytelling legacy.
In a career which spanned over five decades, Roth was a bestselling author only once: his most famous work, Portnoy's Complaint, sold 420,000 copies in the first 10 weeks after publication.
Roth died in New York City at 10:30 p.m. local time of congestive heart failure, his literary agent Andrew Wylie said.
Roth was regarded as a fierce satirist and uncompromising realist, confronting readers in a bold, direct style that scorned false sentiment or hopes for heavenly reward. He enrolled in Bucknell University as a law student and eventually switched to literature at the encouragement of a professor, who went on to become long-time friends with Roth.
"Every year we talked about it, it became amusing", Savigneau said, adding that great writers such as Marcel Proust and James Joyce had also missed out on the prize.
In 2010, he was awarded a National Humanities Medal by President Barack Obama.
The book's narrator and frequent Roth alter ego Nathan Zuckerman tells the story of his former high-school classmate, Swede, whose suburban life is destroyed when his daughter becomes involved with a domestic terrorist group.
In his obituary, New Yorker has recalled Roth's favorite mes: "The Jewish family, sex, American ideals, betrayal of American ideals, political fanaticism, and personal identity". That, however, did not last: "My humiliation before the Yeshiva belligerents-indeed, the angry Jewish resistance that I aroused virtually from the start-was the luckiest break I could have had", he said.
He wanted "to see whether I had wasted my time", according to the New York Times Book Review. Surely he wasn't regretful: While living on Manhattan's Upper West Side, he spent his retirement reading voraciously (mostly nonfiction), going to concerts, and spending time with friends.
Claire Bloom was his second wife, with the pair exchanging vows in 1990 and separating in 1995.
"I don't want to read any more of it, write any more of it, and I don't even want to talk about it anymore. In my life I have had, in total, a couple of months of these completely wonderful days as a writer, and that is enough". The movie was later adapted into a feature film in 2016 directed and starring Ewan McGregor.
He first Wednesday Margaret Martinson Williams in 1959 but the couple divorced four years later.
RottenTomatoes: 42 percent; IMDb: 6.3 Anthony Hopkins plays a disgraced college dean with a secret past who romances a younger woman (Nicole Kidman) with her own mysterious history in an adaptation of Roth's 2000 novel.
The separated in 1963, but Williams reportedly refused to sign the divorce papers.
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