Book Review: Pimp by Shashank Gupta

A few weeks back while casually scrolling through my Facebook feed I came across an article about an app that wherein couples can rent a room by the hour. I would be lying if I say that I was both shocked and impressed reading about the app, shocked because I was surprised to learn that this could be done legally and impressed with the sheer ingenuity of the idea. To my surprise around the same time I received an email describing a book with a similar story line and quite a direct title. I was obviously intrigued and a few days later a tiny package with a book barely a bit bigger than my palm with a beautiful embossed title on the cover that read “Pimp” by  Shashank Gupta.

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“Pimp” talks about a sixty year old “Uncle” who retires only to find that he has nothing much to look forward to. He had a good for nothing abusive dead father,  an even more abusive dead mother and the only love he felt in his life was towards his step mother who is dead as well leaving. He is now married to a woman he loathes and being around her makes him sneeze non stop. On a rather unusual day of trying to avoid being around his wife, Uncle stumbles upon a very simple need of a certain section of people and decides to make a business out of it.

When I decided to read the book I knew it would be a story with a serious tone but I never imagined that the narration and the story would be this interesting. The book is one of the more darker psychological thrillers I have read in a long time. The highlight is the narration which is emotionless even while describing the most gruesome of events. I found the casual tone to be a really smart move because the words don’t direct you to feel the way the author wants you to feel, instead it gives you the space to be horrified or scared or not react at all so in general it has more impact.

Character development is another strong point about this book. You can imagine the different facets of Uncle’s personality. You sympathize with his ugly childhood, cringe at his lack of morality and be in awe of his business acumen. The smaller characters have been described to the utmost detail possible along with the nitty-gritty of their relationship with Uncle.

all I can say about the book in the end is that just like the title, the story described is pretty open about several issues that people try to avoid talking about in general. Pimp is quite a dark read and there are pages where I was forced to take a break because I needed a breather. It is a in your face kind of a story that portrays some really serious emotions, personalities and facts of our lives. It is definitely a book I will remember for a while and I am looking forward to reading more books by the author in the future. If psychological thrillers and suspense is your genre then you need to pick a copy of this book.

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