Richard Bradford, 70; His 2 Books Included ‘Red Sky at Morning’

From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Richard Bradford, 70, a novelist who wrote “Red Sky at Morning” and “So Far From Heaven,” died Saturday of lung cancer in Santa Fe, N.M.

A Chicago native, Bradford graduated from Tulane University and spent three years in the Marines. He moved to Santa Fe in the mid-1950s and worked as a writer for the New Mexico Tourist Board. He also worked as a writer and editor for the New Orleans Chamber of Commerce.

“Red Sky at Morning,” Bradford’s first novel, published in 1968, was a critical and commercial success, going through several printings. Many reviewers compared it favorably with “Catcher in the Rye.”

The coming-of-age novel told the story of Josh Arnold, a 17-year-old Alabaman who moves to New Mexico with his mother when his father joins the Navy during World War II.


After his second novel, “So Far From Heaven,” Bradford gave up books and found work as a medical transcriptionist.