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Higgins, George V(incent)

(US, 1939–99)

Higgins, a journalist who became a lawyer, achieved international recognition with his debut novel, The Friends of Eddie Coyle (1972), which was turned into a popular film starring Robert Mitchum. It established the pattern for many of his later books, being set in Boston, focused on criminal protagonists, and revealing Higgins's flair for dialogue. The way his characters talk seems to have a ring of authenticity, even if their motivations are sometimes only lightly sketched. His next two books, The Digger's Game (1973) and Cogan's Trade (1974), were equally effective. Making use of his knowledge of the legal world, Higgins wrote several novels featuring the attorney Jerry Kennedy, including Kennedy for the Defense (1980) and Penance for Jerry Kennedy (1985), but not all his later work lived up to the promise of the early books.

Elmore Leonard, Charles Willeford.


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Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionBooks & Authors: Award-Winning Fiction (Ha-Ke)