NEW YORK (AP) — Wendy Weil, a beloved and longtime literary agent who represented a wide range of groundbreaking and best-selling authors from Alice Walker and Rita Mae Brown to Andrea Barrett and Mark Helprin, has died, a colleague said Monday.

Emma Patterson said Weil died Sept. 22 of a heart attack at her country home in Cornwall, Conn. She was 72.

A New York City native, Weil was an agent for more than 40 years and founded the Wendy Weil Agency Inc. in 1986. Among the books she helped get published were Walker's "The Color Purple," Brown's "Rubyfruit Jungle" and Helprin's "Winter's Tale." Weil is survived by her husband, Michael Trossman, and two stepsons.