Au­thor of To Kill a Mock­ing­bird dies

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - FRONT PAGE - Reuters ht­metro@hin­dus­tan­times.com

Harper Lee, who wrote one of Amer­ica’s most en­dur­ing lit­er­ary clas­sics, ‘To Kill a Mock­ing­bird’, and sur­prised read­ers 55 years later with the pub­li­ca­tion of a se­cond book about the same char­ac­ters, died at the age of 89 on Fri­day.

A state­ment from Tonja Carter, Lee’s at­tor­ney in her home­town of Monroeville, Alabama, said Lee had “passed away early this morn­ing in her sleep” and that the death was un­ex­pected.

For decades it had ap­peared that Lee’s sole lit­er­ary out­put would be ‘To Kill a Mock­ing­bird’ and the July 2015 pub­li­ca­tion of ‘Go Set a Watch­man’ was a sur­pris­ing and some­what con­tro­ver­sial lit­er­ary event.

For many years, Lee, a shy woman with an en­gag­ing South­ern drawl who never mar­ried, lived qui­etly and pri­vately, al­ways turn­ing down in­ter­view re­quests. She al­ter­nated be­tween liv­ing in a New York apart­ment and Monroeville, where she shared a home with her older sis­ter, lawyer Alice Lee.

Af­ter suf­fer­ing a stroke and en­dur­ing fail­ing vi­sion and hear­ing, she spent her fi­nal years in an as­sisted liv­ing res­i­dence in Monroeville. “When I saw her just six weeks ago, she was full of life, her mind and mis­chievous wit as sharp as ever,” her agent, An­drew Nurn­berg, said in a state­ment. “She was quot­ing Thomas More and set­ting me straight on Tu­dor his­tory.”

She was born as Nelle Harper Lee on April 28, 1926, in Monroeville, the youngest of four chil­dren of AC and Frances Finch Lee.

Harper Lee:

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