George V. Higgins Books

Description /Buy link takes you to Amazon. As an Amazon Associate I earn money from qualifying purchases.

George V. Higgins was an American author and attorney that wrote crime fiction. Born in 1939 in Brockton, Massachusetts, Higgins spent his childhood in a small town called Rockland.

Order of Jerry Kennedy Series

# Read Title Published Details
1 Kennedy for the Defense 1981 Description / Buy
2 Penance for Jerry Kennedy 1985 Description / Buy
3 Defending Billy Ryan 1992 Description / Buy
4 Sandra Nichols Found Dead 1996 Description / Buy

Order of George V. Higgins Standalone Novels

# Read Title Published Details
1 The Friends of Eddie Coyle 1970 Description / Buy
2 The Digger's Game 1973 Description / Buy
3 Cogan's Trade 1974 Description / Buy
4 A City on a Hill 1976 Description / Buy
5 The Judgment of Deke Hunter 1978 Description / Buy
6 Dreamland 1978 Description / Buy
7 A Year or So with Edgar 1979 Description / Buy
8 The Rat on Fire 1981 Description / Buy
9 The Patriot Game 1982 Description / Buy
10 Choice of Enemies 1983 Description / Buy
11 Impostors 1986 Description / Buy
12 Outlaws 1987 Description / Buy
13 The Sins of the Fathers 1988 Description / Buy
14 Trust 1989 Description / Buy
15 Victories 1990 Description / Buy
16 The Mandeville Talent 1991 Description / Buy
17 Bomber's Law 1993 Description / Buy
18 Swan Boats at Four 1995 Description / Buy
19 A Change of Gravity 1997 Description / Buy
20 The Agent 1999 Description / Buy
21 At End of Day 2000 Description / Buy

Order of George V. Higgins Short Stories/Novellas

# Read Title Published Details
1 Old Earl Died Pulling Traps (Short Story) 1984 Description / Buy

Order of George V. Higgins Short Story Collections

# Read Title Published Details
1 The Easiest Thing In the World 2004 Description / Buy

Order of George V. Higgins Non-Fiction

# Read Title Published Details
1 Friends of Richard Nixon, The 1976 Description / Buy
2 Style Versus Substance 1984 Description / Buy
3 Wonderful Years, Wonderful Years 1988 Description / Buy
4 The Progress Of The Seasons 1989 Description / Buy
5 On Writing 1990 Description / Buy

George V. Higgins Anthologies

# Read Title Published Details
1 Boston Noir 2 2012 Description / Buy
Print: Print PDF

Later on, he joined Boston College, contributing his skills to the institution’s literary magazine (Stylus) as an editor. He spent a few years pursuing an MA degree at Stanford University before returning to Boston College to study law.

In the years that followed, the author wrote for several publications, including The Boston Globe, The Wall Street Journal, and the Associated Press. His resume also mentions stints in government departments that fought organized crime.

Many contemporary fans of the author have remained largely unaware of the numerous careers he pursued before making his mark in publishing. Higgins was a district attorney, federal prosecutor, defense attorney, and even a social historian.

Though, by the time he died in 1999, Higgins was primarily celebrated for his contribution to crime fiction. People credit him for creating the Boston noir genre that inspired the works of many writers and filmmakers in the 21st Century.

Higgins loved John O’Hara’s works. Critics have compared their styles on many occasions, noting that both authors emphasize realistic dialog because it defines the characters, which, in turn, fleshes out the story.

Higgins was well aware of his proficiency where the dialog was concerned. He was proud of his ability to bring characters to life through their distinct speaking patterns. From what the author saw, decent dialogue did not provide a blow-by-blow transcript of a conversation between characters.

Good dialog took interesting conversations and presented them in a compressed but entertaining format. Even though the world classified him as a crime writer, the author refused to embrace the description.

Critics based their assessment of the author on his penchant for writing stories with criminal elements. But Higgins disagreed. As far as he was concerned, his novels were not mysteries. Rather, he wrote stories in which some characters landed on the wrong side of the law.

The author obsessed over violent and unpredictable characters because they were far more interesting than well-behaved citizens. But the criminal components at the heart of his books were not enough to justify the crime fiction classification, or so he argued.

This was not the only contradiction in Higgins’ life. The former attorney and journalist worked at Boston University as a creative writing professor. And yet, he argued on more than one occasion that writing couldn’t be taught.
You had to master the craft on your own. This philosophy did not prevent the author from passing his extensive knowledge on to the next generation of writers.

George V. Higgins Books into Movies

‘Cogan’s Trade’ became a 2012 movie titled ‘Killing Them Softly,’ starring Brad Pitt. ‘The Friends of Eddie Coyle’ became a 1973 movie of the same name.

Best George V. Higgins Books

The author was called George Vincent Higgins II at birth. But he eliminated the numeric component later on in life. He was married twice, first to Elizabeth Mulkerin Higgins and then to Loretta Cubberley Higgins. Higgins’ best books include:

The Friends of Eddie Coyle: Eddie Coyle is a Boston criminal with a problem. He doesn’t have friends, not in the traditional sense. The people in his life serve a purpose, including the guys from whom he buys guns and the bank robbers to whom he sells the firearms.

Eddie is relatively decent at what he does. But it isn’t enough to keep him out of the crosshairs of the law. He was caught with stolen alcohol. The prosecutor’s office is determined to put him away for a long time.

Eddie cannot survive behind bars. For that reason, he wants to make a deal. If he gives the authorities a bigger fish, they may let him off the hook. But who should he betray? And what if they find out?

Cogan’s Trade: Johnny Amato had a plan. He wanted to rip off a poker game. The game was protected by the mob, but Amato did not care. He could trust Frankie and Russel to keep cool heads during the heist. And once the job was done, he had a fall guy in place, ready to take the heat for his crimes.

But Amato did not account for Jackie Cogan, a mob enforcer with a ruthless streak that wouldn’t stop until the right people paid.

When Does The Next George V. Higgins book come out?

George V. Higgins doesn't seem to have an upcoming book. Their newest book is Cogan's Trade and was released on November, 1st 2011.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *