Originally published in 1955, Violent Saturday was voted “Suspense Novel of the Year” by Cosmopolitan and later that same year 20th Century Fox released a movie based on the novel with an all-star cast including Victor Mature, Richard Egan, Lee Marvin, and Ernest Borgnine.
The plot centers around a bank robbery in the town of Morgan, Alabama. But the novel is more about the townspeople than the bank robbery itself. The story focuses on a slice of life in a small town in the 50’s, full of interesting characters whose mundane everyday routines meet in an explosive event that leaves them re-evaluating their lives. You will remember the people of Morgan and its violent Saturday afternoon long after you’ve finished reading this book.
Praise for Violent Saturday:
“Violent Saturday is a helluva a novel and it will appeal to both the reader of thrillers as well as a more literary set. The best part is it does what literature should. It shines a light on the human condition while telling a terrifically entertaining and vibrant story. It is a violent novel that has all of the assets of a well-crafted thriller, but it adds the deliberate pace, the characters, and the illumination of a well-rendered piece of art.” – Ben Boulden, Gravetapping Book Reviews.
“It is quite an extraordinary effect Mr. Heath has managed in Violent Saturday – like the tick-tick-tick of a time bomb.” – Author and playwright Wilbur Daniel Steele
Ill Wind is a more literary novel than Violent Saturday. It takes us back to Morgan, but looks a little deeper into the day-to-day lives of its inhabitants, providing a snapshot of life in the late 50’s with acute clarity – from the regret over past mistakes, to repressed feelings of love, to the gossip spread at the bridge clubs and the barbershop, to the struggle for political power and control of the community. It’s a taught, compelling novel that lays bare the emotions, ambitions, and struggles of the citizens of Morgan as they react to a tragic event that leaves in its wake more questions than answers.
Praise for Ill Wind:
“Ill Wind is a passionate and lyrical novel written by a man with an extraordinary ear and an eye for the right detail.” – Award winning author Edward Gorman
“Ill Wind is…about perfect. Succinctly written with excellent characterization and with good pace. A real fine job.” – Best-selling novelist and screenwriter W. R. Burnett