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MR Paradise
Elmore Leonard
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MR Paradise

3.53  ·  Rating details ·  2,892 Ratings  ·  222 Reviews
In his first Detroit homicide book in more than 20 years, the New York Times bestselling author mixes football, two corpses, two angry hit men, a safe deposit box full of loot, an overworked detective, and a beautiful witness for a fabulous read.
Published June 1st 2005 by Turtleback Books (first published 2004)
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Ed [Redacted]
Kelly and Chloe are roommates. Kelly is a model and Chloe was a hooker until she gave it all up to become the "girlfriend" of Anthony Paradiso Sr. an 85 year old retired lawyer and extremely wealthy man. Chloe talks Kelly into helping out with a cheerleader thing (don't ask). Unfortunately during the festivities, "Mr Paradise" and one of the girls are murdered and it falls to Detroit Homicide investigator Frank Delsa to unravel the mystery and find the killers.

If you have ever read any of my Elm
Sep 13, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Entertaining. Just like watching a good movie. What sets Leonard apart is his use of dialogue to move the plot forward - and there is a lot of dialogue. And movement. Elmore is exceptionally hip to the nuances and subtleties of his character's speech. If you read it too fast you can miss some subtlety, some information, but the plot will still move forward for you. Better to slow up a little and savor the technique. And the nuance.
Jun 11, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, read_2012
'Mr. Paradise' is a wealthy old man with a fixation for watching American football accompanied with a personal cheer act by two Victoria Secret models for hire in varying degrees of undress either side ofthe TV. Unfortunately for stand in cheerleader Kelly, her first gig entertaining the old man ends in murder with the former lawyer and one half of the cheer contingent gunned down.

Comprising a mix of police procedural and Leonard’s own unique brand of crime fiction, ‘Mr Paradise’ is a fast pace
Sep 13, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novel, crime
Elmore Leonard might have the best dialogue in the game. It's real, it's gritty, it's amusing, it's wacky in the most honest sense of human nature. This book was delightful, but it was lacking the one character I wanted to know more about. In Leonard's best books, he has at least one character, and sometimes it's a few, that I want to read an entire biography about. Get Shorty had Chili Palmer and Out Of Sight had Jack Foley. He also needs to put them in situations for them to grow and get weird ...more
Nov 20, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
While it is hard for me to criticize Elmore Leonard, this novel could have been shaved by about 40-50 pages. Still, as is, this caper is far better than 99% of the stuff being published today. Pick this one up for a few hours of enjoyment, then leave it on your hotel bedside table for the cleaning lady.
Cathy DuPont
Nov 19, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Quirky. A quirky book by Elmore Leonard? Imagine that.
Stephen Gallup
This year, while reluctantly commuting the vast distances necessary to continue earning a salary, I've taken to listening to audiobooks, and burn through an average-length novel in under a week. I started out with some rather cerebral works (Pynchon, Faulkner, Doctorow, ...), but as the drive has become more onerous, I've gravitated toward stories that are more action-oriented. Such fiction requires less on the reader's part. It's just diversion. On the other hand I've found that sometimes this ...more
Sep 14, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2008
It's easy to see why so many Elmore Leonard novels have been made into movies, and it wouldn't be surprising to see "Mr. Paradise" end up on the big screen as well. Leonard occasionally touches on his characters' internal lives, but his real strength lies in his dialogue. He has a fantastic ear for how people talk, how they joke with each other, how they react (or fail to react) to what someone else says in conversation. He's particularly good in capturing how cops and criminals talk with each o ...more
Roger Lansing
ehhh...that's the way I feel about this book. I usually love Elmore Leonard novels and will say that I still really enjoyed the dialogue in this book. That is Leonard's most obvious strength. The other thing that I like about Leonard's stories is his ability to show us how stupid people can be. So many of his characters make very bad decisions (fed by greed or revenge or both)and then end up paying for those bad decisions.

This book has those things, but it still left me wanting more. Kind of li
David Williams
Feb 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Anthony Paradiso, also known as "Mr. Paradise," is a retired lawyer with a young girlfriend. His girlfriend, Chloe, arranges an evenings entertainment with her roommate Kelly, a fashion model. They play cheerleaders while he watches University of Michigan football on TV. The evening ends in murder. Mr. Paradise and Chloe are murdered by hit men hired by Montez, Mr. Paradise's assistant. Kelly sees it all.

The police know what happened, but how to prove it. This story has all the elements of a gre
Amanda Patterson
Nov 16, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Elmore Leonard has written 40 novels. Mr Paradise will not disappoint his fans.
The author of Get Shorty is in fine form with this offering. We’re in Detroit where the ageing mega-wealthy Mr Tony Paradise mixes with Victoria's Secret models and hit men. He’s a fan of University of Michigan football and he hires these models to play the role of "cheerleaders", bare-chested while he watches videos of Michigan games.
Two hit men show up, killing the old man and one of the women. The surviving ‘cheer
Jul 30, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, mystery, michigan
This a classic Leonard with a crackling dialog and a colorful array of dangerous, misogynistic criminals who undermine their own schemes through greed and stupidity. The tale covers Detroit detective Frank Telsa's investigations of a contracted hit on an elderly retired lawyer and a call girl unlucky to be at the scene. It's been awhile since I felt compelled to enter Leonard's disturbing vision, but the joy of experiencing his delightful writing style and deft plotting return helps me see why I ...more
Jun 30, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Elmore Leonard is almost unparalleled in depicting the mean streets of Detroit (Loren D. Estleman gives him a run for his money.). But here is one of the gritty capers with which he built hi reputation. Recommended.

Thriller - Chloe is an escort for Anthony Paradiso. One night she persuades roommate, Kelly, to join her. Chloe and Paradiso are shot dead by two thugs; the hit set up by Montez Taylor, who's angry at Paradiso for cutting him out of his will. Montez asks Kelly to impersonate Chloe and
Sean O
Oct 07, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well written, good characters, and a snappy plot. So why only 3 stars? Because it felt like a script treatment. Like Elmore was writing directly for the Coen Brothers.

The story felt pretty slight. Instead of a big time Hollywood movie, this would have been the pilot for an on-going series. In other words, Elmore Leonard's "the wire."

The other thing that bothered me was the transparent casting. Look, a hot starlet type, a cool old black man, a hot head black man, two dumb ethnic white guys. It's
David Spencer
Something about Leonard's writing style makes it well-suited to audiobooks. This was my second Leonard audiobook and my third time reading one of his books.

I give it 3 stars because while I enjoyed every moment of it, the plot isn't that interesting, there is no real mystery, you see the end coming a mile away, and there's nothing extraordinary about the characters. And yet, just through Leonard's craft, the book flies by and every CD track left me with a smile.
Sep 09, 2007 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
My first foray into Elmore Leonard, I was somewhat confused as to how he's a bestselling author. Sure, the story was a quick, fun read, but nothing much actually happened -- there were no major plot twists or surprises, and the ending was expected. I guess his other stuff must be more gripping.
Halley Sutton
Jun 09, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Even a Leonard book that I didn't love is a four star book.
DP Lyle
Feb 05, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another great story from the master of crime fiction. The characters and the dialog sparkle as usual.

DP Lyle, award-winning author, lecturer, and story consultant
Jun 08, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Instant fan.
Mariano Hortal
Publicado en

Mucho había yo demorado un pequeño post para recordar a Elmore Leonard, el último grande de la novela negra que nos dejó en el 2013. Leonard, a pesar de su merecidísima fama fuera de España, no gozó de ese éxito por aquí. Quizá la forma de publicarlo, errática, sin seleccionar todo lo bueno que tiene, dejando para otros momentos sus obras menos redondas, ha lastrado esto. No tiene lógica que otros autores, medianías sin dudarlo, sin embargo, v
The homicides occur right away and it doesn't surprise me. Elmore Leonard doesn't mess around giving readers a lot of background information up front. If he needs you to know anything about a character or a crime, that information occurs organically within the story. Pay attention and you'll discover things about the characters that move them to behave the way they do.

This is another great example of how Elmore Leonard captures the voices of his various characters. I've never experienced a write
Chris Birdy
Aug 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I never met an Elmore Leonard story I didn't love, and this one was no exception. Only Leonard could capture the underbelly of Detroit the way he did. Old man "Paradise" has two hookers dressed as cheerleaders come to entertain him. When they finish their routine, he stays in the living room with one and sends the other upstairs with his "assistant." While in the living room, Paradise and the one cheerleader are shot and killed. The detectives not only have to figure out who killed them but whic ...more
Sep 28, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a decent enough book. Typical Elmore Leonard with great dialog and a variety of interesting characters and whatnot. Still, this isn't one of Leonard's best efforts. I'm currently reading Freaky Deaky, which is along a sort of similar vein, but is markedly better. An enjoyable book nevertheless.
Rick Brose
This was my first introduction to the writing of Elmore Leonard. I enjoyed the characterizations and dialogue. It was captivating enough to read through in one sitting. However, I did not totally buy into some of the dynamics of the characters and their actions. It is definitely enough to get me to look into more of his works.
Aug 30, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don't care what period any Elmore Leonard book is supposed to be in it's in the 1970s. It was a crazy situation read during a crazy situation in my life, so I will give the book the benefit of the doubt. It's a solid book from a great author, but it does not stand out as a fantastic book.
John R. Goyer
A good story, and I think I'd enjoy just about anything by Elmore - but given that, the story was good, not great, and while the lingo of the police force helps give you a mood, it also makes it a bit harder to understand what's going on. Not as exceptional as other books of his I've read.
Sep 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio
Another crazy Elmore Leonard story. Where does he get his plots and characters?! For the most part, these characters are not people I want to know in real life, so why did I so thoroughly enjoy the book? It must be the quirky-ness of the people, the unexpected actions and the great dialogue.
Cat Eye55
Mar 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another Stellar Book

I have never read anything by Elmore Leonard that didn't deserve five stars and then some. I only regret that some day I will have read them all and this genious writer will never write another.
Steven M. Fagan
Nov 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lean writing, gritty verisimilitude.

Vivid characters pursue the storyline which proceeds with the shot-to-the-body blow by blow of real crime. Yeah, I would believe that.
Erik Tanouye
Bought this at Book Off for $1 but I don't remember when.
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Elmore John Leonard lived in Dallas, Oklahoma City and Memphis before settling in Detroit in 1935. After serving in the navy, he studied English literature at the University of Detroit where he entered a short story competition. His earliest published novels in the 1950s were westerns, but Leonard went on to specialize in crime fiction and suspense thrillers, many of which have been adapted into m ...more
More about Elmore Leonard...
“Tony was a lawyer, so you had to accept the fact he was opinionated and full of shit.” 2 likes
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