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Colleen McCullough dies at 77; author of 'Thorn Birds,' mysteries
Colleen McCullough dies at 77; author of 'Thorn Birds,' mysteries

When she was young, Colleen McCullough realized she would spend her old age in poverty unless she started to write. "As I moved through my 20s and 30s, I became aware that I was going to be a 70-year-old spinster living in a cold-water, walk-up flat with a single 60-watt light bulb," she later said. By day, the large, garrulous, Australia-born McCullough ran the neurophysiology lab at Yale University. By night, she wrote. Within a few years, "The Thorn Birds," her 1977 saga of a baronial outback family and a priest tormented by love, sold millions of copies and was made into TV's second-most-popular miniseries, topped only by "Roots." McCullough, an...

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