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Mr. Paradise Lp Paperback – Large Print, Jan 13 2004

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Paperback, Large Print, Jan 13 2004
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow; Lrg edition (Jan. 13 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060598077
  • ISBN-13: 978-0965900256
  • ASIN: 0060589663
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 15.1 x 22.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 490 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,945,241 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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First Sentence
Late afternoon Chloe and Kelly were having cocktails at the Rattlesnake Club, the two seated on the far side of the dining room by themselves: Chloe talking, Kelly listening, Chloe trying to get Kelly to help her entertain Anthony Paradiso, an eighty-four-year-old guy who was paying her five thousand a week to be his girlfriend. Read the first page
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By Donald Mitchell #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on Dec 6 2008
Format: Mass Market Paperback
In the world of Elmore Leonard, everyone has an angle. The more corrupt the person, the dumber the angle. The role of the police is usually to simply pick up the pieces after the baddies do themselves in.

The best Elmore Leonard books put you at the heart of these schemes and leave you shaking your head about how anyone could be so dumb.

In Mr. Paradise, the viewpoint angle shifts slightly . . . and not for the better. The heroine of the story is lingerie model (Victoria's Secret) Kelly Barr. Kelly is as close to being an innocent as you get in Leonard's world.

Kelly is drawn into the action because the woman she rooms with, Chloe, is the $5,000 a week "girl friend" for eighty-four year-old lawyer, Tony Paradiso, who likes to be called Mr. Paradise. Tony likes to have topless cheerleaders in U Michigan outfits doing dirty chants and dances while the Wolverines win on videotape. Chloe persuades Kelly to come along with the easy money, and Kelly's life will never be the same.

Before the night is over there are two dead bodies and Kelly's life expectancy has never looked worse. How will she respond?

This book could have been called "Seduction of the Somewhat Innocent" and that would have captured its theme better. Kelly is not only put in harm's way . . . she also has her very soul tempted.

The good news for Kelly is that Detective Frank Delsa would like to take her home to meet Mama, and he helps her deal with temptation.

The premise for this story would have been terrific if it had been a short story . . . or if the book had centered on one of the villains (such as attorney Avern Cohn). But as it is put together, it's a boy-meets-girl, boy-falls-for-girl story against the backdrop of criminal cretins. That wouldn't be my first choice for reading material. I plan to check out the Elmore Leonard crime plots a little more carefully in the future before I invest the time to read his latest.
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Format: Hardcover
Martin Amis has likened Elmore Leonard to Charles Dickens, but I doubt "Mr. Paradise" was the book to spawn the comparison. Leonard's writing can range from hilarious to just-plain cool, but in his latest novel he seems content to alternate between boring and forced. Leonard's prose is snappy as always, but it's like a high school kid who knows how to mix a good martini-you can't help but admire the facility, but something seems to be missing.... What's mostly missing in "Mr. Paradise" is a plot.
In fact, the plot is so stripped down that I can hardly even gloss it here, for fear of spoiling it-suffice it to say there are two very desirable, shallow, and available young woman, an identity switch, a murder, and a hard-boiled, widowed, sensitive-on-the-inside-cop...wait, wait. I may have already said too much.
Leonard's characterizations (which, at times in the past, have been cuttingly sharp) are deader on the page here than the book's corpus delicti (one of the aforementioned women whose identity is switched, said switching being, as a plot maneuver, incredibly facile, but as a make-the-reader-confused maneuver it works wonders-the two women are entirely indistinguishable in character and affect (actually, this stays pretty much the same even after one of them is dead). Maybe Leonard is making a trenchant critique of the interchangeability spawned by our consumer culture, but somehow I doubt it. If so, how come the reeking-of-authorial-avatar cop falls so hard for one? (No you dirty birds, not the dead one! (although, come to think of it, that would have gone a long way toward jazzing up the plot).
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By A Customer on June 18 2004
Format: Hardcover
With precision writing on the same level as McCrae's BARK OF THE DOGWOOD and a story equal to Leonard's TISHOMINGO BLUES, MR. PARADISE is one great read. Witty and fast-paced, this wonderful romp is set in gritty Detroit. Reminiscent of GET SHORTY (at least for this reader) but with more humor and feeling, this makes for a very enjoyable read.
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By Brenda on June 4 2004
Format: Audio Cassette
Kelly and Chloe are roommates. Kelly is a model and Chloe is the playmate of an elderly rich man named Tony Paradiso. Mr. Paradise, as she calls him, talks with a cruel mouth but promises to take care of Chloe with an insurance policy. His son hates Chloe and would fight for anything left to her in the Will.
Mr. Paradise likes to see Chole play cheerleader. One night, Chloe brings Kelly along. Unfortunately, for the ladies, Mr. Paradise gets generous with their company and splits them up. When two hit men arrive, expecting to find an old man having a quiet night, only to discover a cheerleader entertaining him with her pom-poms, they are not happy. The hit takes place, but isn't seen for what it was suppose to be - a home invasion. And this, folks, is just the beginning.
Leading the police investigation is Detective Frank Delsa. He's suspicious about the crime scene. He has a female witness acting odd, a fast-talking bodyguard and he is attracted to the beautiful witness.
Believe it or not, I've avoided Elmore Leonard's work. Being a skeptic of over-praised authors, I've dodged it for a long time, but it was the TV show Karen Sisco that changed my mind about listening to this audio book.
Mr. Paradise is the first Detroit mystery for me, and I can tell you it's not for sissies. It's rated R with plenty of cringing points. Forget walking and talking tough, these characters "breathe" tough, including the women. The dialogue is short and sweet and the storyline moves quickly. Very entertaining. It's worth a second listen. Remember to use the headphones.
Actor Robert Foster is the reader. He also plays Marshall Sisco on the TV show Karen Sisco. Foster is a smooth reader, and does a good job of delivering exactly what Leonard's characters are, Detroit rough.
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