Tuesday, September 04, 2007

“A River of Punishment and Execution”

Authors nowadays are told that they have not only to write good books, but then to promote their literary efforts with tendentious blogs and tours and bells-and-whistles YouTube videos. In that light, I am particularly charmed by a very understated promo video from Peter Ackroyd, who has a new book about England’s Thames River to flog. No technological fireworks here. Instead, the sum of what we get is the doughboyish, bespectacled, and ardently academic Ackroyd in a small boat, drifting along the Thames through London (about which he already wrote a wonderful book) and gabbing about that river’s history, while a snippet of classical music reels out in the background. It’s nothing in the way of cinematic come-ons, but nonetheless makes me want to send away for his book post haste. Other authors, take note.

(Hat tip to Book/Daddy.)

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