If you've been reading the collaborations between Ken Bruen and Jason Starr for Hard Case Crime, then you know what to expect in Pimp. The plot hardly matters, although there is one, because it's secondary to everything else going on. And there's plenty going on, including graphic sex, graphic violence, and general madcap hilarity. You won't run across a novel more self-referential or meta than this one anytime soon.
Let me give you an example. See the cover there to the left? Great cover, right? Here's a passage from the book about the cover of a book to be written by one of the characters (pp. 212-213) (all asterisks are mine):
"What the f**k?" Paula shouted. "There's no redhead in the book. Angela is blonde."
"And what's she doing, reaching for a . . . ."
"And Mr. Oblivious sitting there smoking doesn't notice? What is he, a congenital idiot?"
"He's distracted by her legs."
"Who the f**k is he anyway? This is not a scene from my g*****n book! Nothing like this ever happens in it!"
"So what? . . . When has a Hard Case Crime cover ever had anything to do with what's in the book?"
And then of course there's a scene in the book where Angela uses a gun she has strapped to her thigh.
Okay, back to your regularly scheduled review. Most of the cast members you know and love from the previous books in this series are back, even some of the ones you might have thought were dead. The setting is Hollywood (mostly), and there lots of shenanigans having to do with betting a novel called Bust made into a TV series.
Reading this is a little like watching a movie like Airplane. There are so many jokes flying around that if you don't like one, you'll laugh at the next one. I laughed a lot, but then I laughed at the previous books as well. You don't have to have read those to laugh at this one, though. Grab a copy and have some fun.