Fleur De Leigh's Life of Crime

Fleur De Leigh's Life of Crime

by Diane Leslie

Paperback

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Fleur De Leigh's Life of Crime 3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
cooperca05 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Fleur is now 15, it's the early 60s and Fleur's parents have sent her to a 'boarding' school in Tucson. The 'boarding' school turns out to be a place where the 'sickly' go -- when AZ used to be the place to go when you had health issues. Again, it's a clever story and a quick read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved both books and i am 64 years young. Fleur is a true anti hero.
downtonabbeyfan More than 1 year ago
I haven't read it yet but I'm entreaged and going to give it a try. I'll read it and then give you my thoughts on it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Of this disfunctional family of psychos if this is autobiografic best left to the shrinks and child abuse service if not true i feel for her parents borrow m.a.@sparta
Guest More than 1 year ago
Picture Eloise in la-la land and you have an approximation of 10-year-old Fleur, the heroine of Diane Leslie's entertaining debut novel Fleur de Leigh's Life Of Crime, a poor little rich girl saga served with twists of poignancy and humor. Fleur, you see, is a product of 1950s Hollywood, the offspring of wealthy but always climbing show biz parents. A former studio mogul now a producer of television game shows, her father, Maurice, (never call him Morrie) is obsessed with health foods and medical attention. Finding Fleur 'Prone to plumpness,' he 'invented the No Whites Inside Diet' solely for her, and insists that she swim each day. Her mother is former B-movie actress Charmian Leigh, creator of 'The Charmian Leigh Radio Mystery Half-Hour,' a program with an audience numbered in the tens of millions. Self-described to producers as 'the cute-as-a-button type,' Charmian tosses off French phrases with the same alacrity that she discards any vestiges of maternal responsibility or interest. Thus, Fleur's upbringing is left to nannies, a series of them, as she explains: 'We'd been studying Bedouins in my fifth-grade class, how they carried only what they needed or loved on the backs of ornery camels, and how other, territorial groups kept them hopping. In my experience nannies were far more nomadic. They had time at our house to knit just one argyle sock, complete just one jigsaw puzzle, or paint (by numbers) just one seascape before my mother made them repack their belongings and move on.' This procession of pseudo caregivers is the spine of Fleur's story. Glendora, the first nanny we meet has 'an extravagant bosom.' When in motion 'her spidery, hennaed hair wriggled around her face.' Upon discovering that Charmian has had an amorous encounter with Glendora's boyfriend, a Beverly Hills cop, the nanny absconds with some of the Leigh's expensive bibelots. Next, Bettina, who suffers from migraines, and wears 'mile-high heels' as well as custom-made lipstick flecked with real gold is briefly in residence. Her successors include Helga, 'a gorgeous young blond, exquisitely tall,' dubbed the 'Scandinavian Amazon' by Charmian; a former orphanage resident, Clover, who treats the Leigh's Christmas party guests to a 'spirited rendition of 'Que, Sera, Sera;' and Miss Hoate who directs Fleur to 'Go stick your head down a toilet. Do you catch my drift?' then nails blankets across the windows lest Commies steal her medical discoveries. The cast of characters in Fleur's life is further enlivened by Suzie Duvic, an actress with 'the loudest, shrillest voice in Hollywood,' and Constantine, the Leigh's gardener, who possesses a torso 'embossed by 'smooth clusters of muscle' and wears a cap 'fashioned from the thigh end of a lady's nylon stocking.' Although surrounded by capriciousness and falsity, Fleur is a resourceful, resilient child who learns that she can not only survive but flourish. With her Dutch-boy bob and savvy observations of adult behavior she is irresistible. Ms. Leslie, a former television researcher who was born in Hollywood, is an imaginative, accomplished writer. Fleur de Leigh's Life of Crime is a winning debut.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Miss Leslie takes the reader on a tour of the now-fading Hollywood that the usual tourist would have loved to sink their teeth into. Her novel mixes pathos, with moments of promising joy, seen through the eyes of a thought-to-be 'priviledged' youngster. Raised by a succession of nannies, cooks,and a gardener, Fleur innocently searchs for love in the most supperficial world of the 'stars.' You'll recognize the names of the 'Hollywood' elite that paraded about in moth-smelling fur coats, and rattled off French as if playing a native of the language in a movie made them authorities on it. Maybe the flickering lights make us overlook the falseness of the 'beautiful people,' or maybe we knew all the time, and just didn't care. It's appropriate that our chosen narrator is a young adolescent, just as bewitched by the same standards as we are. Lucky for us, she happens to have a toungue-in-cheek humor and the ablility to ask the questions we never dared to, about the people we always wanted to know about. It is one giant cocktail party, prooving that Hollywood doesn't need a sensational script to make movies because it, in itself, would sufficiently suffice. I'd call it completely human, fantastically creative and at times, heartbreaking.
Rumrican More than 1 year ago
Not sure what title had to do with the story. I wasn't sure what if any meaning of the story was. I found it un satisfying