More Strange Songs in Amazon’s Kindle Ads

Dog licking a Kindle from Amazon TV ad

Ad: Zest
Song: “Lover’s Cravings” by Bibo

Amazon is actually giving this song away free — just point your browser to . It provided the background music for one of Amazon’s most likeable Kindle commercials, and it’s part of a larger trend. Looking back over the history of Amazon’s advertising, you can see more examples of the thoughtful ways they’re presenting their new digital reader. And they’re using some very special songs to help share the idea that a Kindle can really become part of your life

This “zest” ad offered a nice collection of cheerful clips showing the Kindle in several cozy (although somewhat unlikely) places! (Like in a basket on the handlebars of a bicycle, or even getting licked by a dog…!) And to set the right tone for this bouncy ad, Amazon ultimately selected just the part of the song where the vocalist is singing “la la la,” over a guitar and the rhythm of clapping hands and set of maracas. But it turns out that when you download the longer (free) version of the song from Amazon, it’s actually got some very thoughtful lyrics. The song is by a British music producer named Bibo, but sometimes I like to think of it as commenting on the way that ebooks can resurrect great works of literature that were written centuries ago…

     Lovers’ names, carved in walls,
     overlap, start to merge.

     Some of them underneath.
     (Maybe) they appear, in graveyards.
     (Maybe they) fade away, weathered and
     overgrown. Time has told.

     Meaningful hidden words,
     (Sudden)ly appear, from the murk.
     (Maybe they’re) telling us, that the end
     never was, Never will.

     Words have gone. Meaning will
     (never) disappear, from the wall.

Screenshot from new Amazon Kindle television ad - The Book Lives On

Ad: The Book Lives On
Song: “Sweet Talk, Sweet Talk” by The New Pornographers

When Amazon lowered the price for their lightest Kindles to just $139, they also released a new ad that was clearly aimed at a younger market. It showed bright-faced young 20-somethings enjoying their Kindles in casual settings — on the grass, in a coffee shop, lying outdoors in the city, or while jogging past a lake. And to give this ad a dynamic feeling, Amazon used a recently-released song by a hip Canadian indie band called “The New Pornographers”, which delivered a near-nonsensical stream of positive-sounding words. “Silhouette, tell me a tall tale, go. Shout it out… Sweet talk, sweet talk…”

But using the rest of the song’s lyrics would’ve just been confusing!

     A mistake on the part of nature,
     You’re so fair and so fey that you’ll sit anywhere.
     I’ve pencil sketched the scene.
     It’s feeling Byzantine.

     Mistakes on the part of nature,
     The living proof of what they’re calling love,
     On certain sideway streets
     Where things that don’t match meet.

     A mistake on the part of nature,
     You are a tall glass, a blast from the past.
     Yeah, things were simpler then.
     You ask exactly when.

     A mistake on the part of nature.
     It’s forgiven. Move on.
     Won’t wear my Sunday suit to walk that street.
     That would feel Byzantine…

     Amnesia becomes ambition.
     Ambition becomes a new sort of
     Charming simplicity,
     Like always, Byzantine…

Singer Annie Little - from the first Amazon Kindle TV commercial Fly Me Away

Ad: “Fly Me Away”
Song: “Fly Me Away” by Little & Ashley

Even Amazon’s earliest ads for the Kindle had the same theme: trying to make this new technology seem friendly, comfortable, and easily approachable. In fact, for their first ads, they held a contest to see who could create the best home-made ad for Amazon — and the winning entry was slapped together in less than a week! “We misread the contest rules and thought it said ‘Make your own Amazon Kindle commercial,'” remembers one of the ad’s two creative directors — a photographer who specialized in stills, with no experience moving pictures. But their solution was to film 30 seconds of stop-motion animation, showing off all the fantastic places you can imagine when you’re reading on a Kindle.

The ad eventually won Amazon’s contest (leading to a series of six more ads) — and its music matched the theme perfectly! “Fly Me Away” is a tender acoustic duet about “Silver Moons and paper chains, Faded maps and shiny things…” But making the charm even more authentic is the fact that the song’s vocalist, Annie Little really is the woman who actually appears in the ad — and she’s signing a duet with her real-life fiance! (Marcus Ashley…) It took two different 7-hour sessions to complete all of the stop-motion animation around — but the visuals and the song both delivered their fanciful message about how Amazon (and their Kindle) offer “A million different ways to go”.

     Silver Moons and paper chains,
     Faded maps and shiny things.
     You’re my favorite one-man show.
     A million different ways to go.

     Will you fly me away?
     Take me away with you,
     My love.

     Painted scenes, I’m up all night.
     Slaying monsters, flying kites.
     Speak to me in foreign tongues.
     Share your secrets one by one…

     Now I can’t think what life was like
     Before I had you by my side.
     Can’t say what I’d do without you,
     Knowing what it’s like to have you.

     Hidden walk ways back in time.
     Endless stories, lovers cry.
     In my mind I’ve been set free.
     Will you take this Journey, you and Me?

     Will you Fly me away?

     Take me away with you, my love!

Who’s That Woman in The Blue Bikini in Amazon’s Kindle Ad?

Anna Zielinski in a blue bikini reading a Kindle at the beach in Amazon Paperwhite TV ad

I was really proud after identifying which novel Amazon was showing being read in their latest Kindle commercial. (It’s Gone Girl, the best-selling 2012 thriller by Gillian Flynn.) But one of my readers had entirely different question. “I am more interested in who that woman is enjoying the book,” they e-mailed me last week.

“Since you’ve done a search into the book, I’m hoping you can figure it out!”

Here’s your answer: it’s Anna Zielinski, and she used to be a professional cheerleader! For two years she cheered on the San Antonio Spurs, an NBA basketball team, as one of their “Silver Dancers” — until she switched to career in acting. She’s appeared in various episodes of lots of different TV shows — including Bones, Castle, Without a Trace, Lie To Me, and How I Met Your Mother. Ironically, in 2005 she had a small part in Samuel L. Jackson’s movie about a basketball coach — in which appeared as a cheerleader!

Just 12 years ago, she was launching her career by starring in stage plays in Dallas — like Viva Las Vegas with Lou Diamond Phillips, as well as stage productions of Moulin Rouge and Chicago. But she was also getting chosen for some high-profile commercials, touting everything from Burger King to Black Angus and Southwest Airlines. She turned in a great performance as the saleswoman at a Saturn dealership, re-assuring a customer who’s confused by the fact that Saturn also sells sportscars. For a shortcut to that ad on YouTube, point your browser to

But now she’s best-known just for reading ebooks. “Anna Zielinski is the face – and body – in some of Amazon’s Kindle ads…” begins a profile in Business Insider. She always appears reading in a bikini — which is usually black — and in her first ad she teased an iPad owner who couldn’t read its screen because of the sunlight. “Poolside Girl in Kindle Ad Plunges a Nation Into Civil War,” joked a headline at CBS Moneywatch, which noted that within two days the ad had racked up nearly 1 million views just on YouTube (after it received a high-profile link from the technology blog Engadget ).

But I’d blame that 2010 controversy on the commercial’s script, which Zielinski delivered perfectly. She gently reminded the poor iPad owner that her own beach-friendly Kindle had only cost her $139.

“I actually paid more for these sunglasses!”

Anna Zielinski wears a bikini in Amazon's sunglasses TV commercial for Kindle

The Strange Songs in Amazon’s Kindle Ads

I’m fascinated by the Kindle, and the way that it’s actually revolutionized how we’re reading and purchasing books. But Amazon’s always been very cautious as they’ve introduced this device into our world. For years their TV advertisements have worked very hard just to seem casual and relaxed, offering only a few simple lines of narration (often with fun and funny visuals). The real key to Amazon’s ads might be their music — which give each spot its special friendly and playful tone.

So which songs did Amazon choose to represent the Kindle?

Anna Zielinski in a blue bikini reading a Kindle at the beach in Amazon Paperwhite TV ad

Ad: Vacation Getaway with Kindle Paperwhite
Song: Chupee by Cocoon

“We have gone to the country, in your old car…” begins the gentle duet by the French band Cocoon, as a strumming ukelele is joined by an acoustic guitar and the sound of hands clapping. The complete song also featured a flute — and some lyrics about how that car trip ultimately went awry. “We have lost our way so many times…”

     Eating your Chupa Chup,
     A plane is making a loop.
     The beavers are so cute.
     A tree gave me a fruit…
     Hello, hello.
     I take you on a trip…

It’s a good choice for an ad about relaxing in the sun reading your Kindle. And there’s a lovely music video for the song on YouTube, which shows the two singers relaxing in the forest — when they’re suddenly discovered by animated creatures who dance on their keyboard — and walk off with their acoustic guitar! (For a shortcut to the video on YouTube, go to )

Ad: Pack Your Kindle
Song: “When They Fight, They Fight” by The Generationals

I’d first refered to this as Amazon’s “Secret Summer Commercial,” since it first aired in England in the summer of 2012, showing “lots of happy people enjoying their Kindle while they’re ‘on holiday’ at the beach.” The first words on the screen are “Pack Your Kindle,” before a montage of cheerful scenes shows scenes from a fancy summer resort (all of which include a Kindle) — like a tall glass of lemonade on a table, or a woman reading by the pool.

Kindle in bathing suit back pocket beach ad

The playful song that sets the tone for this ad even opens with a “wolf whistle”, and it’s by a Louisiana band called The Generationals. Though the ad only used two of their song’s lyrics — “I love you baby,” and “Oooh, ooh ooh….” — the parts of the song that Amazon left out are actually much darker (and would actually have completely contradicted the ad’s cheerful message!)

     When they fight, they fight!
     And when they come home at night they say,
     “I love you, baby.”

     Was it too much too soon,
     Or too little too late?
     He got the message she left on his car, in the rain.

     And then the words they come to you,
     driving away.
     You just can’t let it go…

     And when it all comes crashing down,
     what can you do,
     to find what you’re looking for?
     And then the words will come to you,
     driving through the rain.

     But there’ll be no one there to say them to anyway…

Ink well from Kindle Fire ad

Ad: “From Kindle, Fire is born”
Song: “Words” by The Givers

When Amazon released their first Kindle Fire tablets, they created some excitement with an ad that depicted the entire history of the written word. “The instruction we find in books is like fire,” began the narration — reading a quote from Voltaire — over footage of a quill pen. “We fetch it from our neighbors, kindle it at home, communicate it to others, and it becomes property of all…”

And Amazon found the perfect song to accompany that ad. (To listen to the entire song on YouTube, go to ) The Givers, another band from Louisiana, begin with an echo-y harmonica mixed with some aimless synthesized notes and a violin, before it’s transformed by a pounding beat into a howl about how “The words we say today. We’ll say, and we’ll see them again. Yes, we’ll see them again…”

     So I choose my words so carefully,
     like the sun, make it glow, or they glare at me.
     Well, I choose light.
     I like that warm,
     keep me up at night.

     And I pry that door of honesty
     And as the warmth shines in, it dawns on me
     That I choose light
     To guide me through my actions at night…

     So just hold up. Don’t fold up.
     Before you know, before you know, before you know, you’ll know
     You’ll see it again.
     Yes you’ll see it again

     And if your notion is in motion
     Before you know, before you know, before you know, you’ll know
     You’ll see there’s no end.
     Yes you’ll see there’s no end, end, end, end…

     And if the waves ride high, then so will I.
     Before you know, before you know, before you know, you’ll know.
     And you’ll see them again.

You’ll see them again…

What Is the Book in Amazon’s Newest Kindle Ad?

Woman in bikini reading at beach in Amazon Kindle Paperwhite ad

Watching TV, I just spotted a brand new ad for the Kindle. (Amazon’s touting the Kindle Paperwhite, so their ad shows a woman in a bikini enjoying an ebook in a beach chair — while the unhappy people around her struggle to read their own tablets in the bright sunlight.) There’s a short shot of the clear, crisp letters on her Kindle’s screen, and it always makes me want to ask the same question.

So what ebook is she actually reading?

Fortunately, you can pause the video long enough to read some of the sentences — and if you type them into Google, you can reveal the secret answer. It turns out that the woman at the beach is deeply engrossed in a 434-page thriller by Gillian Flynn. It’s called Gone Girl, and it became a best-seller in 2012 just a few weeks after it was released, ultimately selling more than two million copies.

For a shortcut to the ebook, point your browser to

It tells a darkly intriguing story about an unhappy couple that’s been married for five years — when the wife suddenly goes missing on their fifth anniversary. That’s why the book is titled “Gone Girl”, and the title of the chapter being read in the Kindle ad is “THE DAY OF…”

“…through it, trying to catch and pin down her thoughts. What are you thinking, Amy? The question I’ve asked most often during our marriage, if not out loud, if not to the person who could answer. I suppose these questions stormcloud over every marriage: What are you thinking? How are you feeling? Who are you? What have we done to each other? What will we do?

My eyes flipped open at exactly six a.m. This was no avian fluttering of the lashes, no gentle blink toward consciousness. The awakenÂing was mechanical. A spooky ventriloquist-dummy click of the lids: The world is black and then, showtime! 6-0-0 the clock said — in my face, first thing I saw. 6-0-0. It felt different. I rarely woke at such a rounded time. I was a man of jagged risings: 8:43, 11:51, 9:26. My life was alarmless.

At that exact moment, 6-0-0, the sun climbed over the skyline of oaks, revealing its full summer angry-god self. Its reflection flared across the river toward our house, a long…”

You can read the whole chapter onlineNPR Books published a much longer excerpt back in May of 2012 when the thriller was first released. I cheated and read a summary of the book’s plot on its page on Wikipedia, and I’ll just say that as expected, this book definitely has a lot of plot twists! And apparently there’s also a movie version that’s in production starring Ben Affleck as the possibly-murderous husband!

But best of all, you won’t have any trouble reading this page-turning thriller in the bright sunlight at the beach — as long as you’re reading it on your Kindle!

For a shortcut to Gone Girl, point your browser to

People React to Amazon’s Newest Kindle

Amazon Hidden Camera Kindle Interviews

Amazon’s just released a new ad for their Kindle Paperwhite — and I wish I could put it into a time capsule. Because it perfectly captures a moment in the evolution of reading. Of course, from Amazon’s perspective, it’s just another way of reaching out to the people who are still resisting the idea of reading ebooks on a Kindle. But they came up with a really clever way to do it — and it makes for some very compelling viewing!

You can watch the video of this ad — and all of Amazon’s newest Kindle ads — at . This one is called simply “Real People, Genuine Reactions to the All-New Kindle Paperwhite “. And it’s the candid reactions that make it so much fun to watch! Amazon filmed people using their newest Kindle — and caught their reactions on a hidden camera!


“Holy Cow!”

“This is amazing…”

Amazon’s narrator explains enthusiastically that “We invited book lovers to try the new Kindle Paperwhite” — but that’s really an understatement. Because Amazon actually set up a miniature living room in the middle of a city plaza — and then invited people to sit down in its overstuffed furniture! It’s a nice gimmick, and it seems to have really made Amazon’s “test subjects” comfortable enough to open about their feelings on books. “I’m such a passionate reader,” one of their subjects explained — and another added “When I’m reading a book, and I really love what I’m reading, I get lost in the story!” But what’s remarkable is how specific they get about the advantages of the Kindle.

“It’s as clear as a book…”

“There’s no glare from the sun.”

“A thousand books in your back pocket?”

“The Kindle is fantastic!”

Of course, by identifying the people in their ads as “book lovers,” Amazon is making a specific point of their own: that reading on a Kindle is just as much fun as reading a print book. (“I love it!” gushes one of their subjects at one point.) And another one even jokes that when Amazon’s through interviewing them about their new Kindles, “We’re not giving ’em back!” But one of the most touching reactions came from what looks like a couple who has been together for a long time.

The husband, looking off towards the future, murmurs reflectively, “We might have to get two…”

Remember, you can watch the video of this ad — and all of Amazon’s newest Kindle ads — at

Kindle News Stories: Cheers and Jeers!

Uma Thurman reads the Cat in the Hat

I see alot of interesting stories about Amazon’s Kindle, and it seemed like it’d be fun to do a special “lightning round”, taking quick note of both the best and the worst stories from the last few weeks. There’s at least one heart-warming story, one provokative developments, and at least a few people who are definitely deserving of some jeers. In fact, I wanted to make this list partly just so I could give a special jeer to all of the authors cited in this story in the Wall Street Journal.

Jeers to the “Authors Who Buy Their Way Onto Best-Seller Lists

About 10 days ago, the Journal published a startling expose of a company called ResultsSource, which promises authors that it can deliver specific sales milestones, including “over 100,000 copies sold” or even an appearance on the best-seller list. The article cites publishing industry insiders who are worried that “bulk purchases are being made to appear like single sales to qualify for inclusion in best-seller lists,” and even when the books drop off the best-seller list, it still becomes a credential that the authors can tout as they hunt for speaking and consulting gigs. For one business book, more copies were later returned in a single week than were sold in that same week, which was still a win for the author since he’d already reached the best-seller list. At least one author admitted he’d paid between $20,000 and $30,0000 for an artifical boost to his book sales — though I should probably also award Cheers here to Amazon, who told the Journal that they were no longer willing to do any business with ResultSource. But…

Jeers to Amazon for deleting eBooks from their App

Amazon had just wanted to update the Kindle app they’d created for Apple’s iOS — but for a short time last week, a bug apparently actually deleted the ebooks which had already been downloaded into the app. “Now I have to upload over 130 books from the cloud,” one user complained to the technology blog Mashable, which also reports that Amazon eventually updated their update to fix the problematic behavior.

Cheers to Uma Thurman
I didn’t want to let the week go by without acknowledging one of my favorite, heart-warming stories. Last Friday movie actress Uma Thurman read The Cat in the Hat to more than 250 schoolchildren — many of whom were wearing special red and white-striped hats just like the cat in Dr. Seuss’s book. It was all part of “Read Across America” Day, which boasts 45 million participants, as a partnership between the Random House, the National Educationa Association, and Dr. Seuss Enterprises. (Each child in Manhattan got a free copy of The Cat in the Hat.) But there’s some fun footage of the event on the NEA’s web site (at ) which includes a clip from Manhattan’s public library showing Thurman delivering an especially dramatic rendition of the children’s classic.

“I saw there with Sally, we sat there we too, and I said, ‘How I wish we had something to do…'”

Cheers for the funny “Kindle at the beach” ad.

I love Amazon’s TV ads for the Kindle, and when I first saw this one on TV, it felt like another one I’d already seen before, where a man and a woman at the beach discuss how it’s still possible to read on a Kindle in the sun. It’s a shot at the iPad (and other tablets), which reflect the glare of the sun when you’re trying to read at the beach — but this ad ends with a surprising twist. The man buys himself a Kindle, and then turns to the woman and says “We should celebrate.”

My husband’s bringing me a drink right now,” she tells him.

“So’s mine!” the man replies.

You can watch the whole thing at, along with all of Amazon’s other Kindle ads — including another 30-second ad with no dialogue at all — just 30 seconds of people reading their Kindles at the beach!

New Amazon Ad Mocks Apple’s iPad

Retina comparison ad for Amazon Kindle

Amazon’s just started broadcasting a fun new ad on television that mocks the high price of Apple’s popular iPad tablets. (That’s a screenshot at the top of this post, and you can watch the whole ad at .) It’s a simple ad — in fact, the narrator says just 40 words. But its message is unmistakeable…

This is the iPad with Retina display. And this is the new Kindle Fire HD with an 8.9-inch display. Stunning HD, stunning HD. In fact, you may not be able to tell the difference.

But your wallet definitely can.

Retina price comparison ad for Amazon Kindle

It’s been fun to watch the reactions to Amazon’s ad around the web. “[I]t’s not beating around the bush this time,” jokes a technology blogger at Mashable. “The ad is a direct comparison with Apple’s iPad, claiming the two devices’ screens are virtually identical, while the price for the Kindle is much lower.” But in the comments to his post, some of his readers disagreed. ” OK, let’s compare the price of a BMX bike to that of a Corvette shall we?” wrote one. “If you’re looking to only read books, surf the web and watch movies, get a Kindle. If you want access to 10s of thousands of games and productivity tools including spreadsheet, presentation and Word-like apps, a camera, the ability to have video chat, movie editing, artistic and music creation apps as well as a large enough hard drive to handle all of those files. get an iPad…”

At a site called Mobile Mag, another blogger seemed to agree with that analysis, writing that that there are indeed more apps available for the iPad, it has a larger display, and its operating system is a lot more sophisticated. But even he seemed to enjoy the rivalry between the two top tablet makers. “Whether you are for the Kindle or against it, it is nice to see that someone is trying to take down the all-mighty Apple,” he writes.

But he added sardonically, “It’s a shame that we all can’t just be friends.”

My Favorite Moments from Amazon’s Ads

eBook Screenshot of the Amazon Kindle Zest ad with the Cheerios
I love Amazon’s Kindle ads. (I’ll be watching TV — muting every single commercial with my remote — when I’ll suddenly shout out “Kindle!”) It’s always fascinating to see them trying to capture the mystique of the Kindle. Here’s my list of some of the very best moments.

The Kindle has its own page on YouTube (at ), so every time I visit it, I end up watching all the other cool Kindle ads that I haven’t seen. One of my favorites shows a little boy telling his grandmother what he wants in the book that sbe’s going to give him for a Christmas gift. (“Mayan temples. Or race cars. Or spelunking… Or martians. Or any kind of alien, really…”) The joke is that his wise grandmother is able to give him all of those things — by giving the boy his own Kindle, so he can download any ebook he wants!

It’s exciting to see digital readers making the “big time” of network television. But I thought it was funny that there was another Kindle ad that had an even stranger connection to Christmas that was much more subtle. The official title of the ad was “Zest” — it’s the one with shots of the Kindle in everyday life. In the ad, the Kindle was everywhere — on a bus, in a jewelry drawer, in a back pocket, getting licked by a dog…

But another shot shows Cheerios splashing across the screen of a Kindle — and they’re covering the page of another ebook. It’s Mini Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella, the sixth book in a series of funny books about life as a shopaholic. And in this one she ponders the next generation of shoppers, starting with her two-year-old daughter Minnie. The Kindle in the ad has turned to a poignant page where, as her daughter leaves a card for Santa in a wishing well, the narrator remembers leaving her own greedy Christmas letters.

…long and involved, with illustrations and pictures cut out of catalogs, just in case he got confused.

A pair of pink-faced girls of about ten, all giggly and whispery, are posting their wishes, and just the sight of them gives me a rush of nostalgia. It seems wrong not to join in. I might jinx it or something.

Dear Father Christmas, I find myself writing on a card. It’s Becky here again. I pause and think for a bit, and then quickly scribble down a few things.

I mean, only about three. I’m not greedy or anything.

Minnie is drawing earnestly all over her card and has got felt-tip on her hands and her nose.

“I’m sure Father Christmas will understand what you mean,” I say gently, taking it from her….

Reading that, it made me wonder what would’ve happened if she’d gotten a Kindle for Christmas instead. I once joked that maybe Amazon was sending hidden messages in the ebooks they were displaying on the Kindle’s screen in their ads. In this case, the message would be about shopping on Amazon. But I finally concluded it was just Amazon’s way of recommending some good books…

And by the way, remember that you can also download the cheerful, bouncing song from this ad for free from It’s a song called “Lovers’ Cravings” by a British music producer who goes by the name of Bibio!

Viewers React to Amazon’s New Paperwhite Ad

Amazon's Kindle Paperwhite TV ad

In all the excitement, I almost forgot to mention: Amazon also has a new ad for their Paperwhite Kindle. It starts with some of the same text as their ads for the Kindle Fire HD. (“We’re the people with the smile on the box. We’re the re-inventors of normal….”) But then it segues into an explanation of what’s revolutionary about the new Kindle Paperwhite.

That’s why we created our newest Kindle, with the world’s first Paperwhite display that reads without glare in bright sunlight, at night and every minute in between.

Because the only thing more perfect than reading is more reading….

You can see the video in the Kindle’s channel on YouTube at — and within six hours, the video had already received dozens of comments. It’s fun to see how it generated a real ripple of excitement this morning around the world, and it’s apparently now been preserved online forever. “I want it now!” posted a 31-year-old woman calling herself DeniGirl2, leaving the very first comment on the video. And a nearly identical comment came later from a 32-year-old nearly 5,000 miles away.

“I want this!!!” posted a viewer in Turkey — who will probably have a hard time ordering one…

“Ordering as soon as it’s possible!” posted a 32-year-old using the handle AdamHitt. (“Congrats Amazon!” he added. “It’s beautiful!”) And a 62-year-old in England also posted “I WANT IT,” but they had another reason for delaying their purchase. “I already have two kindles tho :(”

There was also a lot of discussion about how exactly Amazon will provide the lighting on the screen. “Isn’t this Paperwhite display just another way to call a LCD display…” asked one users (adding “I hope I’m wrong.”) And within one hour, another YouTube commenter had set them straight. “It’s still e-ink, just like before. [Amazon] added a light around the rim of the screen (plus a special film to make the light even) on top of the e-ink display.

“If you turn the light off, it’s just like the old kindle (but better resolution)!”

One user wondered if it’d be hard to find the new Kindle Paperwhite in the dark, so you’d be able to then turn on its light. But I was impressed by the observation that came from another comment. “With the light on the battery will still last 8 weeks, so most people will just never turn it off, even in properly lighted areas.”

I’m excited about Amazon’s newly-announced Kindles, so it’s nice to see there’s other people online who are also sharing my excitement. A retired home entrepreneur had just three words for Amazon’s newest ad. “Awesome! Love this!” And at least one user was more interested in the obvious advantage of the Kindle’s new built-in lighting.

“Guess I won’t have to read my Kindle in bed with an LED Headlamp on anymore if I had this!”

And remember: You can pre-order the new touchscreen devices — with their new built-in lights — at !

Brand New Ads for Amazon’s Newest Kindle Fires!

Two children play with a touchscreen Kindle in Amazon's new TV ad

Amazon’s just released two slick new ads to promote their new Kindle Fire HD tablets. You can watch them all on YouTube at — and they provide some interesting glimpses into the way Amazon is planning to sell these new devices — as well as Amazon’s own view of their role in the 21st century.

When I discovered these ads Thursday on YouTube, only 300 people had seen them. But soon Amazon should start broadcasting them on TV during prime-time commercial breaks, where they’ll presumably be seen by millions. So what does Amazon want to tell these people about their new Kindle Fire HD tablets — and about Amazon? Here’s a transcript of the text for their new ad for the Kindle Fire.

“We’re the people with the smile on the box. We’re the re-inventors of normal. We dream of making things that change your life, then disappear into your everyday. Of making the revolutionary routine.

“Our accomplishments are things you barely think about, but can’t imagine not having. Connecting your mouse to your front door was our moon landing. Creating Kindle — our four-minute mile. Customer reviews – our light bulb. And when we build you something new, you can expect everything to change a little more.

“Look around. What once seemed wildly impractical is now completely normal. And ‘normal’ just begs to be messed with.”

There’s some touching footage in the ads of a family receiving an enormous box from Amazon, and another one showing a small box from Amazon — presumably a new Kindle — arriving as just another package in a stack of mail. It shows children touching the screen of a Kindle, and even a woman who’s reading her Kindle while brushing her teeth, all to make the point that now Kindles are becoming part of our lives. And I thought Amazon came up with a great way to tout the fact that you don’t even need a light now to read on one of their new Kindles. They show someone relaxing in a hammock on their deck overlooking the city — enjoying their Kindle outside, at night, without even needing a reading lamp.

Amazon TV ad shows Kindle in a hammock on a city deck

But I wondered if, when Amazon created this ad, they were thinking of Steve Jobs. Apple’s legendary “Big Brother” ad in 1984 helped to launch the whole personal computing revolution, and Steve Jobs himself helped write Apple’s inspiring “Think Different” campaign (which showed footage of famous people as the narration explained that “they change things. They invent. They imagine… They create. They inspire. They push the human race forward…”) The grandiose comparisons created an aura of excitement around Apple’s new products, and now that they’re competing directly with the iPad, maybe Amazon’s now trying to claim some of that same gravitas for themselves. They’re basically equating the ability to shop online at with the first time humans walked on the moon!

Both the classic Apple ads and Amazon’s newest ads use “change” as their theme, trying to capture the excitement that a new technology can bring into the world. Interestingly, Amazon has also filmed a shorter version of the same ad that starts with the same first two sentence — “We’re the people with the smile on the box. We’re the re-inventors of normal…” — but then cuts straight to their point. “So when we bring you a new Kindle Fire, you should know that normal is going to change. Again.” Despite the fact that this ad is a full 30 seconds shorter, it still actually lists out more of the specific selling points for Amazon’s newest tablet. (“With an HD screen, HD camera, and dual-speaker Dolby sound, and 22 million movies, TV shows, songs, apps, books and more…”) And I thought the way that they ended this commercial made all of Amazon’s points with just four scrappy words

“Hey normal — take that!”

A Secret Summer Kindle Commercial?

Amazon summer beach resort Kindle ad

I love Amazon’s Kindle commercials. It’s really fun to see how a professional advertising agency captures the fun of owning a Kindle with flashy video clips and exotic music choices. Today I discovered there’s one great Kindle commercial that most people haven’t seen. It’s airing only in England, but you can also watch it online on Amazon’s official channel for Kindle videos!

For a shortcut to the video, point your browser to

This cheerful ad shows lots of happy people enjoying their Kindle while they’re “on holiday” at the beach. (“Pack your Kindle,” urge the words appearing on-screen at the beginning of the commercial.) Those words appear over the image of a carefully-packed suitcase, but all the other video clips show a fancy summer resort. There’s a woman relaxing by the pool, a tall glass of lemonade, and a room with a view of the beach. But of course, each clip includes a Kindle as part of the fun!

Kindle on beach mattress

“Holds all your holiday books…” read the words next to the glass of lemonade. “Lighter than a paperback…” appears as a man flops onto a bed with his Kindle, with the lovely beach view in the background. Amazon manages to include all the Kindle’s key selling points, while creating a real sense of fun. “Now introducing Kindle Touch…” they add towards the end of the commercial. “Kindle £89 Kindle Touch £109…”

The video appears on Amazon’s official channel for Kindle videos at (On the same page, Amazon’s also webcasting some inspiring interviews with some self-published authors.) Altogether, Amazon’s online Kindle videos have been viewed more than 7,249,265 times. And yet so far, this fun summer ad has racked up less than 11,000 views.

I liked the bouncy song in the background, which adds to the breezy tone of the commercial. The song seems to have just two lyrics — “I love you, baby,” and “Oooh, oooh oooh…” But with some research, I discovered that the complete song is actually a lot darker. “When they fight, they fight. And when they come home at night they say, ‘I love you, baby’…” (It’s by a band called “The Generationals” — and it looks like Amazon’s using yet another new hip band from Louisiana for its Kindle ads….)

It’s not just the perfect song for a Kindle ad. The exact same song was used in a commercial for Bloomingdales, according to the band’s page on Wikipedia. The song’s swinging trumpet and bouncing bassline gives it a groovy ’60s sound — towards the beginning, there’s even a playful “wolf whistle.” But the effect seems to be ironic, since the song is actually chronicling the end of relationship

“He got the message she left on his car, in the rain…. And when it all comes crashing down, what can you do, to find what you’re looking for? And then the words will come to you, driving through the rain. But there’ll be no one there to say them to anyway….”

But at least some couples are still enjoying a lovely holiday together at the beach this summer — at least, judging by Amazon’s Kindle ad.

Kindle in bathing suit back pocket beach ad

Behind the Scenes with Amazon’s Kindle Actress

Amy Rutberg and Boy from new Kindle bookstore commercial

Amazon’s released at least four different ads where actress Amy Rutberg plays a woman who resists her friend’s gentle suggestions about the advantages of a Kindle. But in real life, she’s a big fan of the Kindle — and gave away over half a dozen of them as a gift this Christmas! She’s been posting some funny updates on Twitter about how her life has changed since she became “the Kindle girl”. And she’s also receiving a few funny messages herself – from other enthusiastic Kindle owners!

“got my 1st Kindle (Touch) last week, and I’m already addicted,” someone messaged her on Twitter in December, adding “It’s ALL your fault ;)” And just last month, an accountant sent her another message with the obvious question. “Do you really use a Kindle? My grand daughter got one for Christmas but it’s already broken!”

“I’m sorry to hear about your granddaughter’s #kindle,” Amy responded sweetly (adding “Yes, I really use my kindle. I’m obsessed!”) But there’s apparently an extra sense of responsibility that comes from being the star of a national ad campaign. Amy pre-ordered an ebook in September, according to one Twitter post, but was startled when it was finally released three months later, and it was time to actually make the payment. “Got a suprise notice that I owed #amazonkindle for an ebook I ordered in Sept,” she wrote. “would b pretty embarrassed if I had a delinquent account!”

I felt a little bit like the Kindle ad paparazzi reading her Twitter posts – but she’s looking for more followers, so I figured she’d appreciate the publicity. And it was refreshing to learn that in real life, the actress from Amazon’s commercials is already an enthusiastic Kindle user herself – and that she’s got a lively sense of humor. (A few months ago she re-posted a silly Twitter update posted by Family Guy writer Alec Sulkin. “Just bought a Ken doll. I don’t know what everyone’s talking about, you can’t read books on this thing!”)

It must be a lot of fun being the woman from the Kindle ad — and then being able to show up with Kindles for all your friends. That’s what Amy did when Christmas rolled around this year, posting in early December, “Just bought 7 $79 kindles as gifts, and it felt gooood….

“and no, I don’t get a discount.”

She even bought her dad a Kindle for Christmas — then posted a picture of it up on Twitter. She joked that the sexy ad it was displaying for a T-Mobile 4G “hotspot” was “So wrong on so many levels :)”

Amazon Kindle image aboug 4G Mobile Hotspot

The Sweetest Kindle Commercial Ever

Girl in Amazon's Kindle ad

This is the sweetest Kindle commercial I’ve ever seen. A little girl peeking through a flower-colored curtains watches a mail truck arrive at her house. And her eyebrows go up as she spots a postman trotting up her steps, delivering a package from Amazon — as a voice-over begins.

“For years, we’ve been placing the things you love at your doorstep. Now, we’re placing them at your fingertips…”

You watch this ad — and all Amazon’s Kindle ads — at . The little girl rushes down the stairs — and hops over the family dog — while her dad, reading the newspaper, hears the excited footsteps and signs for the package. The little girl opens the package at the bottom of the staircase, and lifts out a Kindle Fire, while her father joins her and starts flipping through the tablet’s family-friendly choices, like a “Dora the Explorer” book or the movie “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.

“Introducing Kindle Fire, a Kindle for movies, music, web browsing, apps, games, and of course, reading….”

In the last shot, the little girl seems fascinated by the Kindle Fire. (Though I’d wanted to believe that it was her new tablet device, it looks like her dad’s going to keep hogging it for himself!) Maybe the commercial’s real message is, “If the mailman delivers something cool to your house, your parents will just take it away from you…” Of course, it addresses an even bigger concern from the last Amazon ad about the Kindle Fire. The mailman in that ad simply left Amazon’s package behind on a woman’s front doorstep! (“People in America must really trust their neighbors,” joked one commenter on YouTube.)

That ad was released in November, when most people were still waiting for their tablets to arrive, so Amazon apparently wanted to remind them how happy they’d be when it arrived. (You can watch that ad at .) What’s really interesting is that both ads use the exact same voice-over.

“For years, we’ve been placing the things you love at your doorstep. Now, we’re placing them at your fingertips…”

Amazon’s calling this new commercial “Dad and Daughter”, and it’s another fun look at the way Amazon is “positioning” their Kindles for the consumer market. But there’s also a small “continuity” error, if you watch closely. It looks like the mailman who finally delivers the Kindle is a different actor than the one that the little girl saw through her window. (The man trotting up her stairs had darker hair, plus a white t-shirt on under his uniform that went up to his neck!)

By the way, I also learned something new about Amazons other Kindle commercial. I’d watch a “friends” commercial online, where the blonde woman complains in surprise that the new Kindle costs less than her jeans or her haircut. I’d never seen it on TV, and wondered if I was just watching an “outtake” that Amazon had ultimately decided not to broadcast. Some of my wonderful readers contacted me to say that they’d seen it on TV — more than once! — and a third reader had the same reaction that I did. “I remember thinking it was weird, since it did seem to air after the one where she bought a Kindle for herself and her dad.” But then there was that same blonde woman again, now telling her friend “You know I can’t afford a Kindle….”

Girl in Amazon Kindle vs printed book ad

Apparently…now she can afford a Kindle!

Amazon’s Secret Kindle Commercial?

I was studying Amazon’s recently-released ads — and I found one that I hadn’t even seen! In fact, I’m guessing that almost no one has, since according to YouTube, it’s been viewed less than 8,000 times. (By comparison, Amazon’s racked up more than half a million views for its latest Kindle ad — the one which argues that an iPad is still more expensive than two Kindle Fire tablets and a new Kindle!)

Last summer, Amazon launched a series of ads about two friends – a blonde woman who didn’t own a Kindle, and a young man who did. But in December, Amazon uploaded the strangest one of all to YouTube. (You can view all of Amazon’s Kindle ads online at .) I’ve never seen this one on TV — and it’s got me wondering if it’s an “outtake” that Amazon ultimately decided not to broadcast! Maybe the advertising agency created it, but Amazon rejected it because it made that blonde woman look a little too silly. But it does offer a deeper glimpse into the lives of the two friends.

“Hey! Check out this new Kindle,” the young man says.

“I wish,” the blonde woman replies. “You know I can’t afford a Kindle.”

“Yes you can. It’s only $79 dollar.”

“What? That can’t be right. That’s less than I paid for these jeans.”

“I know.”

“That’s less than my cable bill.”

“I know!”

“That’s less than I spent on this haircut.”

“I know.”

“That’s less than I spent on your birthday present.”

“I know…”

“How do you know how much I spend on everything?”

(Pause) “I read a lot.”

That’s one thing I love about Amazon’s TV ads. Each one has something exciting to say about the Kindle — but each one is also completely different! But here’s why I think this ad is an outtake. Amazon had already released an ad where the blonde woman triumphantly tells her friend that she’s finally purchased a Kindle for herself. (You can watch it online at ). I first saw it in late September, and by now it’s been viewed just on YouTube more than 168,000 times.

“What’s up, happy pants?”

“I just bought my dad the new Kindle. $79.”

“You?! A Kindle? Really?”

“No. Me, two Kindles. Really…”

“You’re going to give your dad two Kindles?”

“No, of course not.”

“Who could you have possibly have bought the second Kindle for.”

“Okay, it’s for me. It’s only $79.”


“And it reads just like a paper book.”


“It’s better to receive than to give.”

“I don’t think that’s how it goes.”

“Close enough.” (She jiggles her two Kindles…)

Amazon’s Funny New Kindle Ad

New Kindle vs iPad sunglasses ad

Amazon’s released a funny new ad for the Kindle. But it’s part of a larger real-world story that makes it even more interesting. In July of 2010, Amazon’s CEO was being interviewed by the New York Times. He was making a point about the Kindle’s low price — at a time when the cheapest Kindle cost $139. “At $139, if you’re going to read by the pool, some people might spend more than that on a swimsuit and sunglasses,” he told the newspaper. And two months later, Amazon released an ad which made the exact same point.

“Excuse me,” says a befuddled young man at a beach resort. He’s trying to read his iPad, and he has a question for the woman next to him, in a bikini. “How are you reading that, in this light?”

“It’s a Kindle,” replies actress Anna Zielinski casually, adding almost as an afterthought: “$139.” She smiles an enormous smile, and then says: “I actually paid more for these sunglasses.”

“Amazon’s New Kindle Ad Attacks the iPad!” I wrote on my blog in September of 2010. And at the time, that was the Kindle’s biggest advantage over an iPad: you could still read your Kindle in the bright sunlight. But now it’s 17 months later, and Amazon’s launched their own color-screen tablet device. (And it costs less than half of what an iPad costs). So two weeks ago, Amazon released a clever sequel to their first ad which updates the poolside conversation, and makes the same point.

“Hey, excuse me — that’s the new Kindle, isn’t it! $79 dollars?”

“Best way to read. Even in sunlight.”

“Yeah, but I mean, if you want to watch movies, or surf the web…”

“I’ve got a Kindle Fire for that.” (The woman nods to where her two children are playing with two Kindle Fire tablets)

“Three Kindles. That’s gotta be expensive.”

“Not really. Together, they’re still less than that.” (The woman in the bikini looks disdainfully at the man’s iPad).

And there’s one more line, just to make sure viewers don’t miss the fact that the iPad-owning man was completely shot down. “Someone sitting here?” he asks the woman in the bikini.

“My husband,” she replies….

You can watch the whole ad on the Kindle’s official page at YouTube ( ) In fact, soon you may only be able to watch it there, since I’m guessing Amazon may never broadcast that ad again. In fact, years from now it may be remembered only as an artifact in the great war of the tablets. Because Tuesday, Barnes and Noble announced a discounted color, touchscreen Nook which costs $199 — the exact same price as the Kindle Fire tablets. (And they’ve also reduced the price of their older Nook Color devices to just $169.)

Amazon may not want to broadcast an ad about how cheap their tablets are — when their competitor’s just released a new tablet that’s even cheaper!

Amazon Unveils New Kindle Fire Commercial

New Amazon Kindle Fire ad

Within two weeks, the first Kindle Fire tablets will start shipping from Amazon’s headquarters. But Amazon’s already filmed a new commercial showing the package arriving on someone’s doorstep! “For years we’ve been placing the things you love at your doorstep,” announces a female narrator. “Now we’re placing them at your fingertips.”

“Introducing Kindle Fire. A Kindle for movies, music, apps, games, web browsing, and of course, reading…”

To watch a video of the ad, point your computer’s web browser to . Sunday Amazon slipped the URL onto their Faceboook page for the Kindle, calling it a “sneak peek” of their newest commercial (‘to help make the wait a little easier.”) Within 12 hours, it had already drawn nearly 1,000 “Like” votes — and more than 320 comments. It was like the commercial finally provided something new to talk about — while everyone waited for their own Kindle Fire tablets to be delivered!

At least four different people posted “Can’t wait!”

It was exciting to see the new Kindle in action, with a shot of the woman swiping her finger across the tablet’s touchscreen. (“Sequences simulated,” Amazon explains in small, faint-grey letters at the bottom of the last shot.) You can also see the logo for Angry Birds — and for Facebook — in that last shot, reminding viewers of all the new iPad-like things that the Kindle Fire can do. (One of the movies available on its homescreen is “Green Lantern” — making the point that you can even watch recent releases on this Kindle’s color screen.)

The ad’s official title is “Placing the Things You Love at Your Fingertips”, and it was fun to read all the enthusiastic reactions on Facebook — though the ad also drew comments from a few “armchair critics”. The biggest complaint was simply that it’s not possible to buy the Kindle Fire in Canada or the United Kingdom. (One comment summarized a typical reaction: “I…wish I could buy one.”) And another commenter was surprised that the deliveryman left the package outside. “People in America must really trust their neighbors,” joked one commenter on YouTube.

I’d noticed that the woman in the ad was reaching for her house keys — suggesting it was her own doorstep where the Kindle had been left. But not everyone had the same interpretation. “Is it just me, or is this not her house and not her kindle,” suggested one viewer on YouTube. “Anyone else would have immediately gone inside and added it to the network, registered the device on their Amazon account and started adding apps. I think she just swiped someone else’s and then had the audacity to sit on their stoop playing with their Kindle.”

Some other commenters had a similar criticism of Amazon’s ad. “I find this ad a bit misleading,” noted one comment. In the ad, the woman sits on her doorstep and starts browsing the web with her new Kindle Fire tablet. “Amazon should make it clear that the Fire, at least this first version, works on Wifi only and is NOT 3G or whispernet capable,” the poster complained. And another commenter wondered why before surfing the web, she didn’t first have to plug in her new tablet. (“That Kindle already had a charge on it???”)

But I have another theory about what’s behind the negative comments.

I think everyone’s just jealous because the woman in the ad already has a Kindle Fire tablet — and they don’t!

Amazon’s New Kindle Fire Ad – plus the Song and Its Lyrics

Ink well from Kindle Fire ad

I’ve always loved Amazon’s slick ads for the Kindle — and they’ve created another one to promote their new color/touchscreen “Kindle Fire” tablet. It opens with a quill pen lifting a drop of ink out of a copper pot. “The instruction we find in books is like fire,” the announcer intones — reciting a quote from Voltaire.

“We fetch it from our neighbors, Kindle it at home, communicate it to others, and it becomes property of all.”

The parchment is on a desk where a drawer is opened, revealing the metal letter blocks for a printing press — history’s next technology for transmitting words. “From Kindle, Fire is born,” the announcer continues, as the words reappear on the screen of a Kindle being read casually at the beach. Then the camera pulls back even further, revealing that someone is watching a video of that ad in their living room on the new touchscreen Kindle tablet. “A Kindle for movies, music, web, games, and reading,” the announcer concludes. “Kindle Fire.”

Within two days, the ad had been watched nearly 700,000 times on YouTube – and it’s been fun to see the reactions. “I’m watching this on my iPad,” joked one viewer in the comments — while another comment offered a different perspective: “thank god they didnt over price like Apple!” And another viewer had one very specific gripe. “…like all good things, this is US only. You selfish bastards!”

What makes this ad so effective is its music, and I finally tracked down the original song. It’s called, appropriately, “Words,” by a young new band called the Givers. (They’re a Louisiana-based group which just released their first album, Light, in June.) You can hear the whole song in a video at . It’s a stunning musical jolt with intense vocals and a pounding beat – and it’s got some strong lyrics to match.

It almost reads like an ode to all the new self-published authors who are finding an audience on the Kindle.

The words we say today, we’ll say.
And we’ll see them again. Yes, we’ll see them again.

So I choose my words so carefully,
like the sun, make it glow, or they glare at me.
Well, I choose light.
I like that warm,
keep me up at night.

And I pry that door of honesty
And as the warmth shines in, it dawns on me
That I choose light
To guide me through my actions at night.

The words we say today, we’ll say
And we’ll see them again. We’ll see them again.
The words go out so far, and come back so hard.
And we’ll see them again. Yes, we’ll see them again

So just hold up. Don’t fold up,.
Before you know, before you know, before you know, you’ll know
You’ll see it again. Yes you’ll see it again

And if your notion is in motion
Before you know, before you know, before you know, you’ll know
You’ll see there’s no end. Yes you’ll see there’s no end, end, end, end, end, end, end, end…

The waves high, slow tide, see them, go I
You’ll see them again, you’ll see them again.
And if the waves ride high, then so will I.
Before you know, before you know, before you know, you’ll know.
And you’ll see them again. You’ll see them again.

The words we say, today, we’ll say.
And we’ll see them again. We’ll see them again
The words go out so far, and come back so hard.
Yes we’ll see them again. We’ll see them again.

The words we say. The words we say
The words we say. The words we say
So I’ll choose my words so carefully
I’ll choose my words so carefully

Newest Kindle Ad – “She Buys a Kindle!”

Blonde woman in new $79 Kindle ad buys one for herself
She finally bought a Kindle! For five months, Amazon’s been running a series of ads where a patient young man talks to a blonde woman about his Kindle. But Wednesday Amazon released a new ad — the fourth in the series — where she finally admits she bought a Kindle for herself!

Within two days, it had already been viewed nearly 100,000 times on YouTube, as Amazon’s announcement about four new Kindles finally intersected the series of ads. “I’m very happy to be a part of them,” the actress posted Wednesday to her Twitter feed (adding “Can’t wait to hear what else they announce.”) And she also posted a funny story about her honeymoon last month in Greece. “Excited 2 find 1 Greek who owns a #kindle & will let me use his charger.

“Tried 2 tell him I kindle girl he said ‘I kindle boy!’ hmm.”

I’ve created a shorter URL where you can watch the ad online, at . So what happens in the newest ad? Here’s a transcript. It opens when the young man sees the blonde woman smiling, with a red ribbon wrapped around a new, gray Kindle.

“What’s up, happy pants?”

“I just bought my dad the new Kindle. $79.”

“You?! A Kindle? Really?”

“No. Me, two Kindles. Really…”

“You’re going to give your dad two Kindles?”

“No, of course not.”

“Who could you have possibly have bought the second Kindle for.”

“Okay, it’s for me. It’s only $79.”


“And it reads just like a paper book.”


“It’s better to receive than to give.”

“I don’t think that’s how it goes.”

“Close enough.” (She jiggles the two Kindles…)

“All-new Kindle only $79,” reads the final shot of the ad. And here’s an interesting piece of trivia. Though she seems a little ditzy, the book that the woman is reading on her Kindle’s screen is Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption. And in real-life, the actress started college at the age of 13, and at 15 became one of the youngest students ever admitted to UCLA. (Plus — judging from her Twitter feed — she already owns a Kindle.)

Part of me wonders if “What’s up, happy pants” will become a new catchphrase. (“I think that’s a seriously strong double entendre,” says my girlfriend.) But I really enjoyed the ad — and it looks like it’s already getting people excited about the new low cost of a Kindle. “That’s cheap enough for me to consider buying one,” reads a comment posted on YouTube.

“Thanks, Amazon!”

More Video from the Woman in Amazon’s Kindle Ad

Watch actress Amy Rutberg from Amazon Kindle commercial video

I’ve become a fan of Amy Rutberg — the blonde actress who appears in Amazon’s newest Kindle ads. But I was curious to see what she’s done besides those 30-second Kindle commercials. And then I discovered a surprisingly candid video she’d filmed of herself backstage during a performance in a New York theatre! (Point your web browser to ). Watching it, I felt a little like the Kindle ad paparazzi. But I guess it’s all part of the job…

When she was chosen for Amazon’s Kindle ad, Amy Rutberg was a stage actress. (Though according to the Los Angeles Times, years ago she’d considered going to law school after college…) And even before the Kindle ad, she’d already had an interesting career. She appeared in an L.A. theatre production of “Man of La Mancha” which started Robert Goulet, as well as a Los Angeles production of The Rocky Horror Picture Show,” and she once did a scene with Jeff Goldblum on an episode of Law and Order. And once she even played Helen Keller in a parody of bad Broadway musicals!

Amy Rutberg plays Helen Keller

But this fall, Amy appeared in a New York stage play billed as a “holy outrageous new comedy” called “The Divine Sister.” One site described it as an “outrageous comic homage to nearly every Hollywood film involving nuns: The Song of Bernadette, The Bells of St. Mary’s, The Singing Nun and Agnes of God.” A convent’s Mother Superior was played in drag by Charles Busch — who also wrote the play’s script. His other plays include “Psycho Beach Party” and “Vampire Lesbians of Sodom” — and Amy Rutberg played a character named “postulant Agnes”.

Amy Rutberg plays a nun named Agnes in the play The Divine Sister

The play had caught the attention of Playbill — an influential monthly magazine that’s passed out at most major theatre productions (with a special inset providing the cast of each play). And last November, they gave Amy a flip camera just so that she could film a backstage tour of the production for their web site! “Hi Playbill!” she says, sounding exactly like her character in the Kindle commercial. Talking fast and enthusiastically, Amy holds the camera just a little too close to her face, and announces “Welcome to The Divine Sister! I’m Amy Rutberg, and I play Agnes. So come on in! I’m going to show you what it’s like to have a typical Thursday…”

Four months later, in March, the play closed after 253 performances and an eight-month run in a 199-seat theatre. But The New York Times had called Amy’s performance in the play “delightful”, and Backstage magazine said she gave her character “an appropriately off-kilter spin.” In an apparent parody of Meg Tilly’s role in “Agnes of God,” Amy played a postulant “possessed by visions and voices,” and Curtain Up magazine hinted that her character ultimately “develops something of a Jeckyll and Hyde persona…” And in this video, Amy’s preserved that magical moment in time when the play was in the middle of its run — and at least part of the video was shot backstage during an actual performance! (To watch part 2 of the video, point your web browser to ).

It all feels very authentic, especially before the production when Amy carries the camera to show the view that the actors are seeing from the stage. “I mean, we can’t really see people in the audience because it is, um, pretty dark, but we can see these lucky audience members who are in our pews,” she says — though as part of the production, the first row of comfortable theatre seats were actually replaced with authentic wooden pews. “I don’t know if you can tell, but they’re only a foot and a half in front of us. So the good news is, you know, they get to see it all up close and personal,” Amy jokes. “But the bad news is, I bet they get spit on quite a bit!”

Amy Rutberg, the blond woman actress in the Kindle book commercial

I don’t know if Amazon discovered Amy through this play — or even because of this video. But it’s fun to watch the actress just months before she appeared in a major TV ad campaign. The cast greets Tyler Furgeon (from the TV show “Modern Family”) who’d been out in the audience that night. And at the end of the video, Amy tells the camera at the end that it was “A special night because it was my birthday. We’re just having a great time.”

And then she’s seen blowing out candles and making a wish…

Funny Stories About That Woman in Amazon’s Newest Kindle Commercial

Amy Rutberg, the blonde girl actress in the Kindle commercial

I just got a message from the woman in Amazon’s Kindle commercial! I’d told her that I finally saw her third Kindle commercial for the first time on Friday night – and it almost made me want to buy a second Kindle! She wrote back, “happy to hear that, and next time buy that second kindle.

“You can keep it in your other pocket!”

It all started with a simple question. “Who’s that woman in Amazon’s newest Kindle commercial?” I’ve been asked this a few times, so I finally searched the web for an answer. The name of “that blonde woman” is Amy Rutberg, and it turns out there’s some surprising and funny stories online about her life before the Kindle ad.

Plus as far as I can tell, in real life she’s already using a Kindle!

On March 18th — before Amazon’s first ad even aired — Amy mentioned her Kindle in a status update on Twitter. (“It’s so nice outside, taking my kindle and playing hooky! Will return from my staycation by 7:30. #nicetobeanactress #springfever”) More than a month later, on April 25th, she tweeted nervously while waiting for the broadcast of that first Kindle commercial. “1st person to let me know what channel they see it on wins a prize…not a knidle sadly…”

Amy is 29 years old, a professional actress who recently moved back to Los Angeles from New York. (And two weeks from this Wednesday, she’s leaving on her honeymoon in Rome!) She may seem a bit ditzy on that Kindle ad, but in real life, she’s surprisingly intelligent. Amy actually started college at the age of 13, according to one online profile, and by the age of 15 she’d transferred to UCLA as a junior, making her one of the youngest students ever accepted to the college!

“When not performing on stage I can be found playing poker, not finishing a screenplay, shopping for the perfect pair of boots or reading my Kindle ;-)” she jokes on her Twitter feed. But when that famous Kindle ad finally aired, her mother stumbled across a blog post where her daughter was described as “hot but 2 skinny”. According to another funny Twitter update, Amy remembers that her mother said “they must have u mistaken 4 tmobile girl”. Amy then added a very special Twitter tag at the end of her post — #thanksmom.

Amy was a little ditzy when she was a little girl back in the early 1980s — at least according to a funny profile in the Los Angeles Times. They remember that “At 3, she said, she had to be carried away screaming after a production of ‘Peter Pan’ because she was certain Peter would be back to fly her to Neverland.” At the age of 16, she was cast as Eliza Doolittle in a production of “My Fair Lady” at L.A.’s prestigious Pacific Coast Civic Light Opera. But at the age of 6, “she directed her classmates in playground vignettes and broke an ankle while ‘flying,’ Pan-like, from a second-story landing…”

If you’d like to see more of “that Kindle girl’s” work, you can check out her professional blog at, which features a “reel” of short clips from her appearances on different TV shows. Last year Amy appeared on an episode of “Law and Order,” and she did another episode just two years earlier (plus an episode of “Law and Order: Criminal Intent”.) In 2006 she played a nurse on an episode of “As The World Turns”, and she even starred in an episode of the TLC reality show about shopping for a wedding gown — “Say Yes to the Dress”.

But she’s been doing lots of live theatre, so Amazon’s TV ad was a big moment. Amy’s Twitter feed captures a fun moment in the life of a rising actress — seeing you’re own work while you’re casually watching TV. “Kindle commercial on @snl… Love it!” she tweeted on April 30th). And by May 13th, she’d sent a shout-out to some friends on Twitter who’d spotted her in the ad. “Thanks for all the kindle love peeps!

“Proud 2 b peddling it!”

Reactions to Amazon’s Newest Ad for the Kindle

Amazon's new Friends Kindle TV commercial with 3500 books

How much has Amazon spent on TV ads for the Kindle? Just last year, they spent over $82 million, according to an article in Ad Week magazine. That’s more than four times what they’d spent the year before — just $19 million, according to the magazine. And Amazon’s apparently spending plenty of money in 2011, too, since I just saw the third ad in that series where two friends discover the advantages of owning a Kindle — a young woman and a young man.

“That is a giant purse.”

“This can hold two books, two newspapers, three magazines. Pretty great, huh?”

“Yeah. My Kindle holds up to 3,500 books. (Stacks of book begin appearing.) Magazines, newspapers — and it only weighs eight and a half ounces.”

“Yeah, but… Then I wouldn’t get to carry my giant purse. (He looks at her dubiously.) Can I see that?”




You can watch the new ad, plus all of Amazon’s other Kindle ads, at the Kindle’s page on YouTube (at ). It’s a funny ad — but it’s even funnier if you read the comments that people have left below the video!

“I guess the Kindle gave up on competing with the IPad, and decided to take on purses.”

Another viewer was skeptical of the ad — but for an entirely different reason. (“I’m asking myself if that’s actually 3.500 books that they put up there…”) And several commenters had apparently located Amazon’s Kindle video just to ask questions about its production. “YO KINDLE,” posted one user, “Every single one of your ‘Friends’ ads has the same song as well as the ‘Pool’ ad. And on every single video, you’ve got tons of people dying to know the name of the song. Just tell us already!!!”

I’m assuming it’s original song — played on a xylophone — that was written just for Amazon’s Kindle ad. But at least three other commenters had an even more burning question.

“PLEASE tell me who that josh duhamel look alike is.”

“I don’t like eReaders, but what I’m more focused on is that dude.”

“I have such a crush on that guy ;)”

At least one comment was directed towards the other actor. (“i want a kindle because she’s hot…”) But overall, it’s a fun collection of different reactions to Amazon’s ad. Of course, not every one of them was positive. (“So last-year. And Apple-ish. But good. Shame….”) And another viewer also detected the resemblance to the “I’m a Mac/I’m a PC” ads — posting “Nice homage to the old Apple ads.”

But his bigger issue was just more of a general suggestion for the publishing industry. When you buy a printed book, he argued, the publisher should bundle the ebook with it — for example, with a “download code” that you could enter to activate the complimentary digital version on your Kindle!

And yet there was at least one commenter who made it clear that they absolutely loved their Kindle. After watching Amazon’s ad, they’d asked one simple question. “How many times does he have to tell her how AWESOME a Kindle is before she finally gets one for herself !!?!!”

“I have the Kindle app for my phone and it is 10x better than the Nook app. I’ll read books on my break at work and just buy a new one when I’m finished with the last one, instaed of having to wait until I get home to pick out a new book.

“LOVE IT !!!!”

Funny Reactions to Amazon’s Newest Kindle Commercial

Girl and Boy from new Kindle bookstore commercial

It’s one of the fun things about being a Kindle owner: recognizing yourself in Amazon’s Kindle commercials! Last week Amazon released a funny sequel to their commercial about the young woman who doesn’t have a Kindle (while her male friend does). In this commercial, she’s seen rushing off to a bookstore…

“Hey, where you going?”

“I want to get a book that came out today.”

“Me too!”

“Come to the bookstore with me.”

“I’m good. Got it! It takes less than 60 seconds to download a new book on my Kindle…”

“60 sconds? Wow. That’s the book I was going to get!”
           [She stares with delight]

“Weren’t you going to the bookstore?”


And this commercial struck a familiar cord with a couple in Scotland – at least according to the comment that the husband left on Facebook. “We used to have a Kindle,” he posted in the comments below the video. “Then my wife started using it. Now SHE has a Kindle!” I had to smile, because I experienced the same thing with my own girlfriend. I finally had to buy her a Kindle of her own.

The couple in the video also drew a positive reaction on YouTube, at, where one user posted that “These two have great chemistry.” Their verdict on Amazon’s new Kindle commercial? “Even cuter than the last one.”

I first found out about the video from the Kindle’s page on Facebook (at And the page also offered a handy tip if you want the notes in your Kindle e-books to include notes from your friends on Facebook! “When you link your Facebook account to you can see the Public Notes of your Facebook friends in your Kindle books,” Amazon explains, adding that you can also “automatically share your reading activity on your [Facebook] Wall.”

Of course, you’ll never see those notes until you get your Kindle back from that woman who borrows it on her way to the bookstore!

Amazon releases a new Kindle commercial – and more!

Girl in Amazon Kindle vs printed book ad

I always get excited when Amazon releases a new commercial for the Kindle. And this time it’s just one of several interesting new videos that Amazon is making available online!

Their new Kindle ad probably belongs in a time capsule, because it seems to capture the exact moment when the way we read starts to change. In a breezy conversation, a young blonde woman complains that “I only read real books” to a young man holding a Kindle, which starts a conversation about how the printed book doesn’t have any advantages over a Kindle.

“Oh, I’m reading a real book.”

“I can read my book in the sun, where there’s a lot of glare.”

“Well, so can I. See? The screen looks just like a paper book, so it’s great for reading in bright sunlight.”

“But you can’t fold down the page when you want to save your place.”

“My Kindle does that for me.”

“But you don’t get the rewarding feeling of actually folding down the page. [She dramatically reaches her arm forward to bend down the page’s corner, and smiles a forced smile] Ahh…

Then there’s an awkward pause where the two exchange significant glances, and then woman asks to borrow the man’s Kindle.

“Wow. The screen looks amazing.”


It’s the first ad where Amazon has touted the new lower prices of the ad-supported devices at the end of the commercial. (“The all new Kindle,” reads the ad’s closing shot.”From $114.”) The commercial will be broadcast for the first time on TV tonight, but this morning Amazon slipped a “sneak preview” link onto the Kindle’s official page on Facebook (at Within a few hours, over 1,600 people had clicked the Facebook icon indicated they liked the new ad. (Although one woman in England seemed to be grateful that it was different than an earlier Kindle ad, posting “As long as it hasn’t got a dog licking a kindle…”)

You can watch the new ad at – but it turns out it’s not the only new video that Amazon is making available. In a press release this morning, Amazon announced they’d created a new web page called The Backstory. (“Find author interviews,” its tagline promises, “and essays, guest reviews, recipes and much, much more.”) And to give the new page a big launch, Amazon is featuring five video interviews with authors, including celebrity chef Tom Douglas and Gossip Girl producer John Stephens (as well as authors Joshua Foer, Holly Black and Cassandra Clare.) They’re calling the series Author Interviews @ Amazon, and there’s many more authors to come. “New author interviews will be announced via the Books Facebook page,” the company explained in a press release this morning, “and on, the Books blog.”

Amazon will even let you post questions for the authors on the Facebook page, or e-mail your questions to (The final interviews will also be available on the book’s “detail” page at “We’re extremely lucky to have fascinating and talented authors gracing our hallways here at Amazon and taking time to chat with us,” Amazon’s Managing Editor of books said this morning.

“We love these conversations so much that we wanted to share them with our customers.”

New Kindle ad –   
Author Interviews –

More Surprising Lyrics From Kindle Ads

I’m fascinated by all the surprises packed away in Amazon’s Kindle ads. Remember the instrumental guitar song in the background of Amazon’s previous Kindle ad. (The “zest” ad, where the Kindle appears in a bicycle basket, and even gets licked by a dog?) For the ad, Amazon selected the part of the song where the vocalist is just singing “la la la” over a steady rhythm from clapping hands and maracas. But it turns out the longer version of the song actually has lyrics to it!

You can hear the lyrics when you download the full version of the song from (It’s free! And I even made an easy-to-remember URL for your web browser — ) The song is by Bibio, a British music producer who (according to Wikipedia) has had his songs appear in commercials for Toyota, L. L. Bean, and even Adult Swim.

And this time, they’re a perfect fit — almost like a poem about the Kindle itself. It reminds me of faces of the famous authors that appear as the Kindle’s screensavers.

Lovers’ names, carved in walls,
overlap, start to merge.

Some of them underneath.
(Maybe) they appear, in graveyards.
(Maybe they) fade away, weathered and
overgrown. Time has told.

Meaningful hidden words,
(Sudden)ly appear, from the murk.
(Maybe they’re) telling us, that the end
never was, Never will.

Words have gone. Meaning will
(never) disappear, from the wall.

James Joyce screensaver from Amazon Kindle

Those are some pretty heavy lyrics for a Kindle ad. If you’re looking for something lighter, remember that the earlier Kindle ads also had some lyrics, and in a romantic twist, the second ad’s lyrics were written by the song’s two singers — Annie Little and her real-life fiance, Marcus Ashley!

“Once upon
a time, I saw you walk along
a moonbeam. What a lovely girl.
I followed you around the world. (Uh-uh oh…)

I love you. Don’t you see?
You stole my heart in one, two, three.
I love you. Yes it’s true.
You stole my heart, and I’m gonna steal yours too.

But Annie wrote all the lyrics herself for the Kindle’s first ad.

Silver moons and paper dreams
Faded maps and shiny things
You’re my favorite one-man show
A million different ways to go…

Both these songs also include more lyrics than what Amazon aired in their commercials, so click here for the complete lyrics for Fly Me Away, Stole My Heart, and the other two songs that appeared on their first EP album! (Or click here to read the lyrics from “Sweet Talk,” the song from Amazon’s new ad, “The Book Lives On.”)

I’ve really enjoyed Amazon’s Kindle ad campaigns. And remember, you can watch all of Amazon’s Kindle ads by pointing your web browser to!

What are the Books in Amazon’s Newest Kindle Commercials?

I love Amazon’s Kindle ads. (I’ll be watching TV — muting every single commercial with my remote — when I’ll suddenly shout out “Kindle!”) It’s exciting to see digital readers making the “big time” of network television. But I’ve always been really curious about what kind of message they’re sending…

I always wonder if there’s a clue hidden in the ebooks that Amazon’s displaying on the Kindle’s screen. Or if it’s just Amazon’s way of recommending some good books…

“The Book Lives On”

Screencap of ebook in the Amazon Kindle coffee shop TV ad

In this ad, good-looking young people read their Kindles in the sunlight — in a park, a restaurant — and enjoy lepaing in the sun and walking on fences. But just two seconds in — as one thoughtful youngster strokes his chin — there’s a shot of the Kindle he’s holding over the restaurant’s red tablecloth. And what ebook is it displaying?

“Unbroken” by Laura Hillenbrand (subtitled “a World War II story of survival, resilience, and redemption.”) It’s only her second book — her first book was Seabiscuit, written 10 years ago, which became the basis for the 2003 film starring Tobey MacQuire. But Unbroken has already received 713 five-star reviews on for its inspiring story of Louis Zamperini, an American Olympic distance runner who joined the Air Force only to become a prisoner of war. The book opens with a description of the day when, as a young boy, he saw an enormous German Zeppelin flying down the California coast.

…typhoon that whisked it over the Pacific at breathtaking speed, toward America. Passengers gazing from the windows saw only the ship’s shadow, following it along the clouds “like a huge shark swimming alongside.” When the clouds parted, the passengers glimpsed giant creatures, turning in the sea, that looked like monsters.

On August 25, the Zeppelin reached San Francisco. After being cheered down the California coast, it slid through sunset, into darkness and silence, and across midnight. As slow as the drifting wind, it passed over Torrance, where its only audience was a scattering of drowsy souls, among them the boy in his pajamas behind the house on Gramercy Avenue.

Standing under the airship, his feet bare in the grass, he was transfixed. It was, he would say, “fearfully beautiful.” He could feel the rumble of the craft’s engines tilling the air but couldn’t make out the silver skin, the sweeping ribs, the finned tail. He could see only the blackness of the space it inhabited. It was not a great presence but a great absence, a geometric ocean of darkness that…

The darkness “seemed to swallow heaven itself,” the next page continues. And that’s the kind of story that’s waiting for you, Amazon seems to be saying, if you buy yourself a Kindle!

Kindle Zest Ad

eBook Screenshot of the Amazon Kindle Zest ad with the Cheerios

This Kindle is everywhere — on a bus, in a jewelry drawer, in your back pocket, getting licked by a dog. But as Cheerios splash across the screen of a Kindle, they’re covering the page of another ebook — this time,
Mini Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella. It’s the sixth book in a series of funny books about life as a shopaholic — this one was just released in September — and in this one she ponders the next generation of shoppers,
starting with her two-year-old daughter Minnie.

The Kindle in the ad has turned to a poignant page where, as her daughter leaves a card for Santa in a wishing well, the narrator remembers leaving her own greedy Christmas letters.

…long and involved, with illustrations and pictures cut out of catalogs, just in case he got confused.

A pair of pink-faced girls of about ten, all giggly and whispery, are posting their wishes, and just the sight of them gives me a rush of nostalgia. It seems wrong not to join in. I might jinx it or something.

Dear Father Christmas, I find myself writing on a card. It’s Becky here again. I pause and think for a bit, and then quickly scribble down a few things.

I mean, only about three. I’m not greedy or anything.

Minnie is drawing earnestly all over her card and has got felt-tip on her hands and her nose.

“I’m sure Father Christmas will understand what you mean,” I say gently, taking it from her….

By the way, you can download the music from this ad for free from as part of a limited-time promotional offer. It’s the song “Lovers’ Cravings” by Bibio.

“What If You Switch?”

Picture of ebook on the iPhone from Amazon Kindle app television ad

Interestingly, a different part of the same book appears in another Kindle ad. It’s the one where a British narrator tells a story about reading ebooks with different phone apps. (“Once upon a time, a woman was reading a Kindle book on her Android phone… One day she decided to switch to an iPhone. Luckily, she’d been buying Kindle books, so she didn’t need to buy her library all over again. She lived happily ever after.”) On her Android phone, she’s reading page 237.

…and I could have told her exactly where she went wrong with that last boyfriend of hers. (Because I totally disagree with that columnist in Heat magazine — the split was not inevitable.) And then we could have gone shopping and been snapped by paparazzi and started a whole new trend with scarves or something…

But ironically, when she switches to her iPhone, she’s actually reading an entirely different book. It’s one of the all-time best-selling ebooks on the Kindle — The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.

…don’t know anything about this particular matter, but I do know beyond and doubt that in other situations Wennerstrom has acted dishonestly. The Wennerstrom case has seriously affected Mikael Bloomkvist’s life, and I have an interest in discerning whether there’s anything in your speculation.”

The conversation had taken an unexpected turn, and Armansky was instantly on the alert. What Frode was asking was for Milton Security to poke around in a case that had…”

Kindle Park Ad

Kindle screen in TV ad by stream reading Ralph Ellison ebook Invisible Man

There’s a close-up of the Kindle’s screen, held in front of the stones and grass by a shimmery green stream. The camera rotates to show it’s being held by a woman (with her blonde hair pulled back) sitting next to a curvy stone bridge, and as the camera rises to the sky, she seems calmly engrossed in her Kindle. But the book that’s she’s reading includes harrowing scenes of racism in American in the 1950s. It’s Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man.

The page she’s reading in the park is about the eviction of an elderly black couple.

…false hair, a curling iron, a card with silvery letters against a background of dark red velvet, reading “God Bless Our Home”; and scattered across the top of a chiffonier were nuggets of High John the Conqueror, the lucky stone; and as I watched the white men put down a basket in which I saw a whiskey bottle filled with rock candy and camphor a small Ethiopian flag, a faded tintype of Abraham Lincoln, and the smiling image of a Hollywood star torn from a magazine. And on a pillow several badly cracked pieces of delicate china, a commemorative plate celebrating the St. Louis World’s Fair … I stood in a kind of daze looking at an old folded lace fan studded with jet and mother-of-pearl.

The crowd surged as the white men came back, knocking over a drawer that spilled its contents in the snow at my feet. I stooped and started replacing the articles: a bent Masonic emblem, a set of tarnished cuff links, three brass rings, a dime pierced with a nail hole so as to be worn about the ankle on a string for luck, an ornate greeting card with the message “Grandma, I love…

That Kindle at the Beach

This was the first Kindle ad, where the camera gradually pulls back to reveal that the Kindle at the beach is being read by a short-haired woman in a red-and-orange skirt, sitting silently next to a young man who’s also reading his Kindle. (“Man, that couple must hate each other,” someone once joked.)

I actually tracked down the author of the ebook she’s reading — Amy Bloom, who’s both a novelist and a professor at Yale University. She was once nominated for the National Book Award, and the story that appears on the Kindle was actually written in 1993. It was part of a new collection of her stories that was released in 2010, called Where the God of Love Hangs Out. And it’s probably the saddest pages to ever appear in a Kindle ad.

It’s the story of a 19-year-old boy who has a sexual encounter with his stepmother the day after his father’s funeral, told from the perspective of the grief-stricken widow. She struggles to find a way to make things right again – but first she must confront the fact that her son wants to continue the relationship.

“No, honey…”

I reached across the table but he shrugged me off, grabbing my keys and heading out the door. I sat for a long time, sipping, watching the sunlight move around the kitchen. When it was almost five, I took the keys from [her husband] Lionel’s side of the dresser and drove his van to soccer camp. [Her other, younger son] Buster felt like being quiet, so we just held hands and listened to the radio. I offered to take him to Burger King, hoping the automated monkeys and video games would be a good substitute for a fully present and competent mother. He was happy and we killed an hour and a half there. Three hours to bedtime.

We watched some TV, sitting on the couch, his feet in my lap. Every few minutes, I’d look at the clock on the mantel and then promise myself I wouldn’t look until the next commercial. Every time I started to move, I’d get tears in my eyes, so I concentrated on sitting very still, waiting for time to pass. Finally, I got Buster through his…

Bloom has practiced psychotherapy, and she’s also published her psychologically-insightful short stories in The New Yorker. (When I asked her if she thought that couple in the Kindle ad really hated each other, she replied “Well, or it’s comfortable silences. Other people’s marriages are hard to judge…”) But she said that she hadn’t even known about her story appearing in the Kindle ad until shortly before our interview. After she’d watched the ad on YouTube, she just went on with the rest of her day.

“I had a deadline. I was working on something, and I went back to work…”

But I’ll still always remember how excited I was to talk to her, since for me she was the ultimate celebrity by proxy — the author of the page in the ebook on that Kindle in that Kindle ad!