Sunday, December 5, 2010

Sunday Salon: Author ads

I was driving home from Christmas shopping yesterday and I heard something on the radio that surprised me: an author endorsing a service. What surprised me about this was that he said, "My name is X and I'm the author of the book Y and this particular service is one that I endorse." (That's a rough paraphrase incidentally.) I recognized both author and book but I wonder how much of Joe Public would. The book was made into a movie with a BIG star but the movie isn't terribly current so it might not ring too many memory bells for folks hearing the book title. The product being endorsed was *absolutely* perfect given the content of the book so it is clear the person behind the ad is literate (or a moviegoer). And since Mr. X doesn't mention that the book was made into a movie, the implication is that the listening public will recognize both author and title and make the connection that this particular author does indeed know about the sorts of products he is endorsing. The arguments about truth in advertising and celebrity endorsements aside, I was incredibly pleased to hear the ad. It would imply that we as a nation (I'm assuming without proof that the ad is nationwide) are readers. It assumes that we will find the endorsement of an author convincing. It assumes, in a roundabout way, that we consider books important things. Given all the negative press about non-readers and reports on the death of books, I am heartened by the assumptions made here. I'm still slightly skeptical but also hopeful that the small core group of readers I know about is indeed a much bigger and more influential pool than I had previously thought. After all, I love to be considered influential!

This past week has been a rather slow reading week for me as it took me a long time to plug through the one book I did read. I spent time in Mexico with the Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo and then moved on to the US during WWII and in the heat of McCarthyism. What consumed your reading week?


  1. I read three books in November. Two of those are Tintin albums and the third carried over from October!

    Right now I am happy to be back in the reading mode, although a bit slower!

    Here is my Sunday Salon post!

  2. I liked the voice of The Lacuna, but when I finished I didn't think the whole book hung together properly. But I still recommend it; it's a good journey to take.


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