Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Billboard books

There's a billboard beside the road we sometimes take to drive home. I suspect it is also visible to traffic on the bridge leading onto the island.

It advertises a book! L'enfant qui voulait dormir, by Michel Brulé.

The poster includes a graphic (though I'm unable to recall whether it's a slice of a cover illustration or an author photo), the title and author, and a line identifying Brulé as the third Québecois to be published by Grasset.

 Posted by Hello

At least twice in recent memory I've glanced up at this particular space and believed I was seeing an ad for a book, but we zipped past too quickly for me to grasp any details by which to confirm this.

I have never, ever seen a billboard advertising a book in English. Not even one endorsed by Oprah. The ads I've seen for books are generally in book sections of newspapers, and similar venues where people seeing them are likely to be buyers of books anyway. Why not entice others to read?

Do billboards for books work?

It invigorates me to think that there are cultures who think of books as part of daily life, a regular commodity to be dealt in like Gap khakis, Suave shampoo, and radio talkshow personalities.

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