An American fiction writer, he is best known for his 1999 novel, House of Sand and Fog, which was adapted into an Academy Award-nominated film. His other works include The Garden of Last Days (2008) and Dirty Love (2013).
He studied sociology at the University of Texas, Austin. He began writing in his early twenties, and he published his debut short story, Forky, in 1982.
He published his memoir, Townie, in 2011. The work details his impoverished childhood in Massachusetts.
He had three children with his wife, Fontaine Dollas Dubus. He and his three siblings were the children of author Andre Dubus.
His popular novel, House of Sand and Fog, was made into a film starring Jennifer Connelly.