Reviews from Lord Taylor of Glencoe
A Simples Life: Aleksandr Orlov, November 2, 2012
Based on the popular comparethemarket.com series of TV adverts featuring Russian meerkat Aleksandr, A Simples Life serves as the mascot’s autobiography.
For a book which is entirely novelty, it’s impressively put together with good quality production and, in particular, some very impressive graphics. Aleksandr’s backstory isn’t particularly ground-breaking, but it moves at a fast enough pace to prevent you from getting bored.
What the book does well is create a personality for Aleksandr which comes across more forcefully than in the short TV spots, and makes him quite an endearing little meerkat in his ridiculously egotistical and self-absorbed way. There are plenty of missed opportunities for humour and, beyond the crass ‘mistakes’ resulting from the character’s broken English, it appears to take itself a shade more seriously in parts than it should. I would have preferred a slightly more flamboyant and ridiculous story, or even the same story with a greater emphasis on humour.
Despite that, we see exactly how comparethemeerkat.com came to be (and it’s quite fun spotting the corporate colours being slotted in all over the place). It’s a stroke of genius from comparethemarket.com’s marketing department and a chunk of good fun. Simples.