The Man Without Shelter – Indrajit Garai

Pages: 122
Released On: 06/09/2022

Lucy, a young lawyer, is on fast track to partnership in her firm. Arnault, a convicted felon, leaves prison after two decades through a piece of evidence in his favor. The two of them come together during a rescue operation at the centre of Paris, and then they go on with their separate lives.

Months later, their paths cross again at a camp for migrants on the edge of Paris.


*Contains thematic spoilers*

Thanks to Estelle for gifting me this book in return for an honest review.

I was kindly gifted Indrajit’s book “The Bridge of Little Jeremy” a little while ago and I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed it, and how moved I was by his writing. So when Estelle offered me a copy of this new novella to read, I jumped at the chance.

He has this amazing ability to create characters. It’s difficult to put into words, but there’s just this sense of magic in these creations. Much like the previous book mentioned above, I love his descriptions of France and Paris, not only the fancy, beautiful, tourist parts but also the dirt, the backstreets, the hidden,

It isn’t always an uplifting story or a happy journey. It shows the worst bits of life, it shows this hard outer shell we sometimes build to protect the vulnerable, very human centre.

It does contain some very difficult topics including, imprisonment, homelessness, suicide, exploitation, refugees, gang crime, terrorism, corruption, assaults, mugging. It’s a lot in a short space of time, it is full on and doesn’t really let up at all.

I love how real his stories are, how steeped in reality they are. And I don’t want to keep going on about it, but I think it’s down to his character building. They’re so real that you identify with them, familiarise yourself with them, you know them, so you feel for them and follow them on their journey,which in turn makes the story feel solid.

At its heart, it’s a real story about real people in real situations. It’s not just an entertaining piece of writing, but it also contains important messages.

This was 122 pages which meant I read it very quickly. Normally I dislike overly long books, but I would have quite happily read more of this. Because it is so short, it gets right to the action and whilst that suits the frenzy of the story, my selfishness wants more, more of the mundane, the everyday in between the big scenes. But as it is, it is very enjoyable.

I may have only read two of his works now, but Indrajit is quickly becoming a must-read author. I know I can rely on him for important topical pieces full of heart and with excellent characters.

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