British author Colin Wilson, 82, who gained fame with his first book,

The Outsider

, has died.

Colin Stanley, Mr. Wilson's publisher and bibliographer, said the writer and philosopher never fully recovered from a stroke in 2011.

The 1956 publication of The Outsider, a study of creative icons - from Vincent van Gogh to Franz Kafka and Friedrich Nietzsche - that espoused a brand of existentialist individualism, catapulted the writer to fame.

The book was hailed as the debut of a major new thinker, though a backlash soon followed from critics who sensed something sinister in Mr. Wilson's lionizing of individualism. - AP