In a statement, Evans’s longtime agent, Caradoc King of United Agents, confirmed the news to Deadline and said that Evans died following a heart attack on Tuesday, August 9.
“He lived a full and happy life, in his home on the banks of the River Dart in Devon. He was much loved and leaves behind his wife Charlotte, and four children, Finlay, Lauren, Max and Harry,” the statement continued.
Born in 1950 in Worcestershire, England, Evans studied law at Oxford University and started his career as a journalist, working at the Evening Chronicle, a local newspaper based in Newcastle, England.
Evans then moved into TV, producing broadcasts about US politics and the Middle East for the popular weekly current affairs programme Weekend World. In 1982, he began producing arts documentaries on a range of subjects, including popular artists such as David Hockney, Francis Bacon, and Patricia Highsmith.
Evans, however, is best known for his 1995 novel The Horse Whisperer, which sold 15m copies worldwide, becoming the number one bestseller in 20 countries. The novel has been translated into 40 languages and was made into a film starring and directed by Robert Redford.
Scarlett Johansson and Kristin Scott Thomas also star in the film, which was nominated for the Best Original Song Oscar.
The inspiration for the bestselling novel came in 1993 when Evans met a blacksmith in the southwest of England who told him about horse whisperers – people who have the gift of healing traumatised horses.
Evans went on to write four more best-selling novels: The Loop, The Smoke Jumper, The Divide, and The Brave. In 2008, he and his wife, singer-songwriter Charlotte Gordon Cumming, were seriously injured after accidentally eating poisonous mushrooms in Scotland. They both underwent kidney transplants – Nicholas from his daughter in 2011.
Evans leaves behind his wife Charlotte and four children: Finlay, Lauren, Max, and Harry.