Elmore Leonard 1925–
(Also writes under pseudonym of Emmett Long) American novelist, short story writer, and scriptwriter.
Leonard is a crime writer whose works are usually set in Detroit. His crime novels are praised for their believable plots, authentic characterizations, and clear, effective prose style. Some critics compare Leonard's books with those of Raymond Chandler and Ross Macdonald, and Leonard himself cites Ernest Hemingway and James M. Cain as influences on his narrative style.
Leonard's early work includes several western novels and short stories published in pulp magazines during the 1950s. He also wrote the scripts for the films Joe Kidd (1973) and Mr. Majestyk (1974). Leonard's novels Fifty-two Pickup (1974), Swag (1976), and Unknown Man No. 89 (1977) received favorable critical response for their refreshing originality and for the creation of some of the most despicable villains in crime fiction. City Primeval: High Noon in Detroit (1980), perhaps his most violent novel, is based on Leonard's own interviews and experiences as he accompanied a Detroit police homicide squad on its patrols. Stick (1983) contains humorous elements in its depiction of an ex-convict's attempt to go straight amid the drug trafficking business in southern Florida.
(See also Contemporary Authors, Vols. 81-84.)