From editorial to marketing

Jonathan Yardley calls James Marcus’s Amazonia a “smart, funny memoir of the five years he spent writing in-house book reviews for Amazon, and otherwise (at Amazon, ‘otherwise’ covers a lot of ground) toiling in [Amazon founder] Bezos’s vineyards.” Yardley concedes that the story is not one “from which any large morals can be drawn — except, perhaps, the moral first postulated by Fats Waller: One never knows, do one?” but says Marcus provides “an amusing inside glimpse at what is surely one of the world’s strangest businesses.”

Marcus recently told a Seattle interviewer, “I don’t miss the transformation of what was an editorial job into a marketing job, and that’s why I ran screaming for the exits by the end of five years.”