, (born 23 August
), is an Australian writer
of young adult fiction
. He has resided in Canberra since age 9. Heath is best known for writing the Six of Hearts
series, for being one of Australia's youngest bestselling authors, and for the high action content in his novels (his work is often compared to that of Matthew Reilly
and to the Alex Rider
series by Anthony Horowitz
Jack Heath's second book, Remote Control was shortlisted for the 2007 Aurealis Award for Best Science-Fiction Novel, and he is a finalist for the 2009 ACT Young Australian of the Year Award. Additionally, he stars as himself in several online short films (which he also wrote, directed, produced, and scored).
Notable characteristics and themes
Most of Jack Heath's works so far have contained one or more of the following elements: atonement/redemption, coming of age, commercialism, conspiracy, corruption, genetic experimentation
, greed, heroism, nature vs. nurture
, and self-sacrifice. However, Heath has been quoted as saying that he writes only "to entertain . . . to keep people entertained from the first page to the last. I'm not trying to force issues onto anyone.
The narrative is usually third-person, with frequent use of onomatopoeia and action scenes that utilize lots of description to create the effect of "slow motion". Another consistent element is the lack of a firm geographical setting; the nation and even the continent that the story takes place on is always ambiguous. (The Six of Hearts series is set in an overpopulated, capitalist metropolis known only as "the City".)
Heath is also known for his in-jokes - for instance, the names of many of his characters are anagrams of famous actors, (e.g. "Serfie Thaldurken" is an anagram of Kiefer Sutherland) and some of the firearms in his novels are named after fictional weapons from films such as Aliens. Similarly, his website includes humorous hidden captions behind several images, and the site's [error message] has been replaced with a short story entitled 404.
Stand alone novels
- 2008 Money Run (Pan Macmillan Australia)
The Six of Hearts series
- 2006 The Lab (Pan Macmillan Australia)
- 2007 Remote Control (Pan Macmillan Australia, shortlisted for the Aurealis Award for Best Science-Fiction Novel, 2007)
- 2008 404 (short story, published on jackheath.com.au)
Stand alone short stories
- 2006 Sleep (published in Voiceworks, issue #65)
- 2007 The Mistress (published in Voiceworks, issue #68)
- 2007 Right-angles and hair (published in The Sex Mook)