Acclaimed crime novelist Elmore Leonard is recovering at a U.S. hospital following a stroke last week.

Leonard's longtime researcher, Gregg Sutter, said Tuesday that family members are guardedly optimistic about the 87-year-old's condition.

Leonard has written 45 Westerns, crime novels and mysteries. Sutter says Leonard has been at work on No. 46.

Many of his books — notably Out of Sight, Get Shorty and Be Cool — have become films.

Life of Crime, which is based on Leonard's story The Switch, will be screened at the Toronto International Film Festival next month.

Leonard was presented an honorary U.S. National Book Award last year.