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Writer James says his life's 'near end'

Streams of tributes to the life and work of Clive James, pictured, flooded the internet yesterday after the comic writer appeared to say that he was close to death.

Yet coming from a man who had just seconds earlier admitted that his memoirs are not only unreliable but "a pack of lies from start to finish", perhaps the world should have known better than to take his words too seriously.

After saying in a BBC Radio 4 interview that he was "getting near the end" and was worried that he would never see his native Australia again -- having suffered from leukaemia, kidney failure and lung disease since 2010 -- Mr James (72) prompted a flurry of accolades for his writing and wit from other authors and comedians.

Yet his spokeswoman later issued a statement denying that Mr James was about to die, even saying that he was, "in fact in reasonable shape".

Irish Independent