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‘The Days of Anna Madrigal’ by Armistead Maupin

Back in the early years, when Armistead Maupin’s “Tales of the City” series unfolded as a soap-operatic serial in the San Francisco Chronicle, a reader sent him a threatening letter.

Its purpose? To defend the life of a beloved character stricken with a dangerous illness. The malady, like many of Maupin’s plot points, had been ripped from the headlines.

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