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Elmore Leonard - Author

About the Author

Elmore Leonard wrote more than forty books during his phenomenal career. Many have been made into successful movies, including Get Shorty with John Travolta, Out of Sight with George Clooney and Rum Punch, which became Tarantino's Jackie Brown. He died in August 2013.

 

Elmore leonard rules for writingClick here, or the picture to download and read about Elmore Leonard's 10 rules for writing.

 

Below is a tribute to Elmore Leonard from Sophie Buchan, Commissioning Editor for Weidenfeld & Nicolson...

 

"Reading Elmore Leonard is the closest you can get to watching a movie without going to the cinema. He could sum up a character in a sentence, wrote some of the smartest dialogue ever committed to the pages of a novel and, to paraphrase his own 10 Rules of Writing, left out the bits that readers tend to skip. He famously once wrote ‘if it sounds like writing, rewrite it’. And you don’t read an Elmore Leonard novel; you live it.


Leonard’s novels will pick up you from your living room or train carriage and plonk you down in a smoke-filled backroom full of the slick-talking charlatans, plotting femmes fatales, and some of the wittiest baddies you’re likely to meet.

 

Publishing his novels was a joy not only because he was consistently brilliant but also because he was tremendously good fun, both on the page and in person. He surprised us constantly. At the age of 84, he delivered a novel that not only dealt with the – then – very topical Somali pirate crisis but also referenced Lady Gaga’s meat dress. I’d be lying if I said I’d expected that.

 

What has been unusual about the response to his death isn’t just the sheer depth of feeling but the range of people who have spoken of their admiration for this work. As tributes pour in authors including Ian Rankin, Martin Amis and Jackie Collins, I’d advise you – whatever you usually read – to discover Elmore Leonard."

Featured books by Elmore Leonard

Charlie Martz and Other Stories The Unpublished Stories of Elmore Leonard

Charlie Martz and Other Stories The Unpublished Stories of Elmore Leonard

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: Hardback Release Date: 18/06/2015

Largely written during his years as a copywriter at a Detroit advertising agency, these stories find Leonard exploring far-flung locations, from the bars of small-town New Mexico to a military base in Kuala Lumpur. They also introduce us to unforgettable Leonard characters, some of whom - like ageing lawman Charlie Martz and former matador Eladio Montoya - star in his other works but were born in these pages.

Be Cool

Be Cool

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: Paperback Release Date: 04/03/2010

The sequel to Chili Palmer's hit movie tanked and now Chili's itching for a comeback. So when a power lunch with record-label executive and former associate Tommy Athens ends in a mob hit, he soon finds himself in an unlikely alliance with organized-crime detective Darryl Holmes and the likely next target of Russian gangsters. But where others see danger, Chili Palmer sees story possibilities. Enter Linda Moon, a singer with aspirations that go further than her current gig in a Spice Girls cover band. Chili takes over as Linda's manager, entering the world of rock stars, pop divas, and hip-hop gangstas. As he wings his way to success in the music business with his trademark cool, Chili manipulates his adversaries and advances his friends, all the while basing the plot of his new film on the action that results.

ebook of the month
Tishomingo Blues

Tishomingo Blues

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: Paperback Release Date: 04/03/2010

Daredevil Dennis Lenahan has brought his act to the Tishomingo Lodge & Casino in Tunica, Mississippi - diving off an eighty-foot ladder into nine feet of water for the amusement of gamblers, gangsters, and luscious belles. His riskiest feat, however, was witnessing a Dixie-style mob execution while atop his diving platform. Robert Taylor saw the hit also. A blues-loving Detroit hustler touring the Southland, Taylor's got his own secret agenda and he wants Dennis in on the game. And high-diver Dennis could be about to take a long, fatal fall - right into a mess of hoop skirts, Civil War play-acting...and more trouble than he ever dreamed possible.

ebook of the month
Get Shorty

Get Shorty

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: Paperback Release Date: 26/11/2009

Collecting money for the Mob isn't too different from any other job, reckons Miami loan shark Chili Palmer. He soon finds himself ordered to collect on a bad debt from Leo Devoe, a guy who died in a plane crash. But it turns out Leo isn't dead - he's living it up in Las Vegas on the compensation money. So Chili follows him to Vegas and then on to Hollywood, where he gets drawn into the world of movies...

ebook of the month
Out of Sight

Out of Sight

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: Paperback Release Date: 12/06/2008

Jack Foley was busting out of Florida's Glades Prison when he ran head-on into Karen Sisco with a shotgun. Suddenly the world-class gentleman felon was sharing a cramped car trunk with a disarmed federal marshal - whose Chanel suit cost more than the take from Foley's last bank job - and the chemistry was working overtime. Here's a lady Jack could fall for in a big way, if she weren't a dedicated representative of the law that he breaks for a living. And as soon as she escapes, he's already missing her. But there are some seriously bad men and a major score waiting for Jack in Motown. And there's a good chance that when his path crosses Karen's again, she's going to be there for business, not pleasure.

ebook of the month
Rum Punch

Rum Punch

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: Paperback Release Date: 02/12/2004

Ordell Robbie makes a fine living selling illegal high-powered weaponry to the wrong people. Jackie Burke couriers Ordell's profits from Freeport to Miami. But the feds are on to Jackie - and now the aging, but still hot, flight attendant will have to do prison time or play ball, which makes her a prime 'loose end' that Ordell needs to tie up...permanently. Jackie, however, has other plans. And with the help of Max Cherry - an honest but disgruntled bail bondsman looking to get out - she could even end up with a serious nest egg in the process.

ebook of the month

Other books by Elmore Leonard

Get Shorty

Get Shorty

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 24/08/2017

'A masterpiece' Martin Amis 'The coolest, hottest writer in America' Chicago Tribune A major Hollywood film starring John Travolta, GET SHORTY has also been adapted for TV with Chris O'Dowd and Ray Romano. Miami loan shark Chili Palmer is ice-cool, whether he's retrieving stolen property or collecting money for the mob. Chasing a bad debt leads him to the bright lights of Hollywood - and to a true story that would make a great movie. Soon he's pitching to Harry Zimm, a B-grade horror flick producer trying to make a comeback. As the lure of Tinseltown's dream-makers and gorgeous wannabe starlets becomes increasingly hard to resist, Chili gets caught up in murder,revenge and romance. Will his killer movie ever get made, or will it just get him killed . . . ? 'In Hollywood, home of movies, gorgeous women, players and fast operators - every move you make is a potential scene ... Nerve-shattering suspense, crackling dialogue and scathing wit from 'the hottest thriller writer in the US' Time Magazine 'One of the most hilarious and cynical Hollywood revenge novels ever written' Playboy 'Extremely funny, bursting with sustained passages of black comedy . . . a major American novel' Guardian

Charlie Martz and Other Stories The Unpublished Stories of Elmore Leonard

Charlie Martz and Other Stories The Unpublished Stories of Elmore Leonard

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 14/07/2016

'Elmore Leonard is the crime-writer's crime-writer, king of all he surveys. For sharp plots and spot-on dialogue, he's in a different league' Ian Rankin When Elmore Leonard died in 2013, he left behind a 60-year legacy of crime novels, many of which have become modern classics. He also left behind a treasure trove of unpublished early stories. Largely written during his years as a copywriter at a Detroit ad agency, these stories introduce us to unforgettable Leonard characters, some of whom star in his later works. Razor-sharp and effortlessly entertaining, this collection reveals a master who honed his craft from a young age, and reminds us why Leonard is so sorely missed.

Charlie Martz and Other Stories The Unpublished Stories of Elmore Leonard

Charlie Martz and Other Stories The Unpublished Stories of Elmore Leonard

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 18/06/2015

When Elmore Leonard died in 2013, he left behind a 60-year legacy of crime novels that, through their trademark wit and grit, transcended genre fiction. He also left behind a treasure trove of unpublished early stories. Their razor-sharp dialogue and headlong pacing reveal a master who honed his craft from a young age. Largely written during his years as a copywriter at a Detroit advertising agency, these stories find Leonard exploring far-flung locations, from the bars of small-town New Mexico to a military base in Kuala Lumpur. They also introduce us to unforgettable Leonard characters, some of whom - like ageing lawman Charlie Martz and weary former matador Eladio Montoya - star in his other works but were born in these pages. Leonard's early work has all the hallmarks that made his later novels sparkle: gripping plots, an innovative and exhilarating approach to language, and a knowing appreciation for what makes everyone - from gangsters to gun molls, from detectives to damsels - tick. Whether embodying an extra on a movie set in Spain or a desperate man out for vengeance in Detroit, these stories are endlessly entertaining - finding humanity in hardscrabble places, and reminding us why Leonard is so sorely missed.

The Switch Brought to the Big Screen as Life of Crime

The Switch Brought to the Big Screen as Life of Crime

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 21/08/2014

Ordell Robbie and Louis Gara have lots in common - time in the same gaol, convictions for auto theft, and a grand plan. They're going to snatch the wife of a Detroit developer and collect some easy ransom money. At least that's what they think... What they haven't figured on is the fact that the husband has a secret mistress and has absolutely no desire to get his wife back. So now it's time for Plan B. With the help of one seriously ticked-off housewife they are going to take the scumbag for everything he's got... THE SWITCH has been adapted for the big screen as LIFE OF CRIME, starring Jennifer Aniston, Tim Robbins and Isla Fisher.

Raylan

Raylan

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 07/02/2013

The star of JUSTIFIED returns in a stunning new novel from 'the greatest crime writer who ever lived' [Dennis Lehane]. US Marshal Raylan Givens, star of the series JUSTIFIED, and protagonist of RIDING THE RAP, PRONTO and the story 'Fire in the Hole', is back in action, this time with a federal warrant to serve on a dope dealer named Angel Arenas, a man 'born in the U.S. but a hundred percent of him Hispanic'. The state troopers are impressed when the marshal struts into the convict's hotel room without drawing his gun, but Raylan soon finds that Angel's already been the victim of another crime, one that's way bigger than a few pot plants, and clearly the work of a professional ... RAYLAN shows Elmore Leonard at the height of his powers, as we follow one of his favourite protagonists through a series of adventures with unlikely villains. As ever, the work is filled with unexpected twists and the most vibrant, crackling dialogue currently available in the English language.

Stick

Stick

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: eBook Release Date: 10/04/2012

A little beauty of a story.A hot, fast read with pungent characters. Los Angeles TimesA slam-bang, no-bull action thrillerand nobody but nobody writes better dialogue. New York Daily NewsIts an established fact: Elmore Leonard is the uncontested master of the crime thriller (Washington Post ) who does crime fiction better than anyone (Cleveland Plain Dealer), and nowhere is this more obvious than in the pages of Stick. One of his most acclaimed noir masterworks, it is the story of ex-con Ernest Stick Stickley whos nudged from the straight-and-narrow path when a big time drug dealer randomly selects him to die and a perfect revenge/payday opportunity presents itself. The author of Raylan, featuring U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens, the sometimes trigger-happy protagonist of TVs Justified, Leonard is indeed the king, holding court with the best of the best, including Coban and Connally, and the late great John D. MacDonald, Dashiell Hammett, James M. Cain, and Robert B. Parker.

Bandits

Bandits

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: eBook Release Date: 10/04/2012

Almost unbearable suspense. Leonard has produced another winner.PeopleA wild ride with the coolest, hottest writer in America (Chicago Tribune), Bandits has everything Elmore Leonard fans love: non-stop thrills, unexpected twists and turns, unforgettable characters, and the most razor-sharp dialogue being rapidly exchanged anywhere in the crime fiction genre. Leonard stands tall among the all-time greats (John D. MacDonald, Dashiell Hammett, James M. Cain) and towers far above most of the writers currently plying the noir fiction trade. The master who created U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens, currently of the hit TV series Justified, is at the top of his game, ensnaring readers in an ingenious plot hatched by a former jewel thief and a radical ex-nun to scam millions from a sadistic Nicaraguan colonel. In fact, the Philadelphia Inquirer says Bandits may well be his best. Read it and decide for yourself.

Touch

Touch

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: eBook Release Date: 10/04/2012

Touch is sensational suspense from the master of crime fiction, New York Times bestselling author Elmore Leonard.A Michigan woman was blind and now she can see, after being touched by a young man who calls himself Juvenal. Maybe it was just coincidence, but Bill Hillwho used to run the spectacular Uni-Faith Ministry in Dalton, Georgia, and now sells RVscan see dollar signs when he looks at this kid with the magic touch.The trouble is that others see them also, including a wacko fundamentalist fascist with his own private army of the faithful and an assortment of media leeches. But everyone whos looking to put the touch on the healer is in for a big surprisebecause Juvenals got a trick or two up his sleeve that nobody sees coming.

Freaky Deaky

Freaky Deaky

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: eBook Release Date: 10/04/2012

Wonderfully wickeda nonstop, pedal-to-the-metal romp. Chicago TribuneOver-the-hill former counter-culture SDS revolutionaries decide to turn bomb-makingand detonatingfrom a political statement to a profitable enterprise in the master Elmore Leonards electrifying and explosively funny thriller Freaky Deaky. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch calls Leonard, the worlds greatest cops n robbers novelist. The Seattle Times says, Leonard is more than just one of the all-time greats of crime fiction. Hes fast becoming an authentic American icon. No matter where you wish to place the man who created the character of U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens, lately of TVs hit series Justified, in the pantheon of mystery and noir detective fiction demigodsJohn D. MacDonald, Dashiell Hammett, James M. Cain and the likethere is no denying that nobody does it better than the Grand Master Elmore Leonard!

Swag

Swag

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: eBook Release Date: 10/04/2012

This brilliant caper (New York Times) from bestselling author Elmore Leonard is a rollicking tale of modern urban crime featuring a cast of small-time criminals with big-time dreams.Ernest Stickley Jr. figures his lucks about to change when Detroit used-car salesman Frank Ryan catches him trying to boost a ride from Ryans lot. Franks got some surefire schemes for getting rich quickall of them involving gunsand all Stickley has to do is follow Ryans Rules to share the wealth.But sometimes rules need to be bent, maybe even broken to succeed in the world of crime, especially when the brains of the operation knows less than nothing.

City Primeval

City Primeval

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: eBook Release Date: 10/04/2012

As gritty and hard-driving a thriller as youll find.The action never stops, the language sings and stings. Washington PostThe City Primeval in Elmore Leonards relentlessly gripping classic noir is Detroit, the authors much-maligned hometown and the setting for many of the Grand Masters acclaimed crime novels. The Alexander the Great of crime fiction (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette) shines in these urban mean streets, setting up a downtown showdown between the psychopathic, thrill-killing Oklahoma Wildman and the dedicated city copy whos determined to take him down. The creator of U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens of TVs Justified fame, Elmore Leonard is the equal of any writer who has ever captivated readers with dark tales of heists, hijacks, double-crosses, and murderJohn D. MacDonald, Dashiell Hammett, James M. Cain, and Robert Parker includedand nobody then or now is better.

Split Images

Split Images

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: eBook Release Date: 10/04/2012

Constant action and top-notch writing. New York TimesA Palm Beach playboy who amuses himself with murder finds himself on a collision course with a vacationing Motown cop in Elmore Leonards Split Imagesa gripping and electrifying example of noir gold from the coolest, hottest writer in America (Chicago Tribune). Split Images is Grand Master Leonard at the top of his game, a bravura example of how exemplary crime fiction is done by a writer who stands tall among the all-time mystery greats: John D. MacDonald, Dashiell Hammett, James M. Cain, et al. The brilliant creator of U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens (of TVs Justified) now brings us a cast of vivid and unforgettable characters on both sides of the law, in a twisting masterwork of unrelenting suspense that the Washington Post calls, Brilliant...impressive...superb.

Cat Chaser

Cat Chaser

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: eBook Release Date: 10/04/2012

Cat Chaser is just what one would expect from Elmore Leonardquirky, peopled with oddball charactersand more twists and turns than a roller coaster.Cleveland Plain DealerA superior example of gritty writing and violent action. New York Times There are numerous reasons why Grand Master Elmore Leonard is considered the coolest, hottest thriller writer in America (Chicago Tribune) and the greatest crime writer of our time, perhaps ever (New York Times Book Review). Cat Chaser is one of them. A gripping, lightning-paced tale of an ex-soldier-turned Florida motel owner whose dangerous affair with the mistress of a Dominican general in exilea former death squad leaderthreatens to have lethal consequencesespecially when drugs, double-cross, and murderous mob thugs are added into the mix. A classic thriller from crime fiction master who first brought us U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens, currently of TVs Justified, Cat Chaser proves once more that when the true greats of mystery and suspense are mentionedJohn D. MacDonald, Dashiell Hammett, James M. Cain, Robert Parker, et alElmore Leonard tops the list.

Elmore Leonard Classic 3-Book Collection

Elmore Leonard Classic 3-Book Collection

Author: Elmore Leonard Format: eBook Release Date: 13/03/2012

New York Times bestselling author Elmore Leonard has written over forty books, including four about U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens, the captivating hero of the hit FX series Justified. Now three of Leonards best novelsGet Shorty, Tishomingo Blues, and Killshotare together in one classic ebook collection.