Encyclopedia Brown creator Donald J. Sobol dead at 87

encyclopedia-brown-donald-j-sobol-dead.jpg Donald J. Sobol, the author who created the rich world of junior detective Leroy "Encyclopedia" Brown, is dead at 87. The circumstances of his death are not yet known, but news of his death quickly trended on Twitter with tweeters sharing how Sobol's books had affected their lives.

"RIP Donald J. Sobol," tweets one fan. "Encyclopedia Brown let me briefly feel like being a nerd was cool."

"Encyclopedia Brown was the reason why I loved the library as a kid," adds another. "Thank you, Donald J. Sobol, and may you rest in peace."

"Encyclopedia" Brown was the son of a detective who sometimes helped his dad, but more often than not worked to solve his own cases in a series of books that ran from 1963 to 2007. The books have never been out of print since he started writing.

Sobol started out as a copy boy for the New York Sun before working his way up to reporter and moving to the New York Daily News. In addition to the Brown series, he also wrote several non-fiction books aimed at a slightly older audience -- topics ranged from history to investing.