Shame on You, Simon & Schuster
Tim Rutten: Marketing of 'O' is outright 'deception'
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 2, 2011 12:28 PM CST
In this book cover image released by Simon & Schuster, "O: A Presidential Novel" by Anonymous, is shown.   (AP Photo/Simon & Schuster)
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(Newser) – Now that we know McCain adviser Mark Salter is the author of O: A Presidential Novel, Simon & Schuster has some 'splaining to do, writes Tim Rutten in the Los Angeles Times. Marketing campaigns don't have to win prizes for honesty, "but they are supposed to stop somewhere just this side of outright deception, which this one didn't," he writes. We were led to believe the author was someone privy to the Obama camp's inner workings—an intimate of the man himself—and Salter doesn't come close.

He's merely a McCain sycophant "with a carload of political scores to settle"—witness the rough treatment in the book of Arianna Huffington and Sarah Palin. But Salter isn't the real villain. "The venality here is that of Simon & Schuster and Salter, which hoped for a big paycheck out of this shoddy and deceptive little enterprise," writes Rutten. "Perhaps they've been punished where it will hurt them the most, since O has—as they say—tanked at the box office."