In an obituary for crime novelist Elmore Leonard ...
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In its obituary for crime novelist Elmore Leonard, The New York Times praised his "louche characters, deadpan dialogue, and immaculate prose style."
Louche, meaning "not reputable or decent," might describe a character like the former millionaire Maurice, in Leonard's novel La Brava, who says, "I spent most of my dough on booze, broads and boats and the rest I wasted."
The word comes from the French for "cross-eyed" or "squint-eyed," probably based on the notion that disreputable people have shifty eyes. It ultimately comes from the Latin for "blind in one eye."