A WORD OF CAUTION: This book has been described as "INTERESTING, BUT A BIT QUIRKY" by people who specialize in studying unusual and extra-ordinary writings. People who are currently receiving medical treatment, pregnant women, small children and people unable to handle "quirky" should consult their medical or literary advisers before attempting to read this book. ---------- Behind Amazon’s quirky smile logo lurks a cold and calculating giant machine. Author Kalpanik S. reveals his own smile as he tells the somewhat quirky story of his complex and hilarious relationship with Amazon. From the sophisticated wit in his portrayal of the courtship period in “How To Get Hired By Amazon In Ten Days”, to the dark humor of the disillusionment period in “The Cold, Calculating Machine”, Kalpanik’s story is more than just an insider’s view of the giant machine known as Amazon.com. It’s a modern, universal story of the uneasy relationship between an individual and today’s gargantuan corporations. In the end, it is also a story of redemption for creative and free thinking individuals that define America.
Revision 2.7: A new chapter was added on the Amazon Warehouse scandal which is based on the report first published by Morning call, a newspaper in Pennsylvania in 2011 which described on the horrendous work conditions at Amazon's warehouse in the region.
CONFESSIONS OF THE AUTHOR
I must confess that English is my 3rd language. Even though this book was edited by 3 professional English editors, it is obvious, even to me, that this book is written by a Foreign-born author.
Foreign-born or not, I believe I have converted a dull topic—the transformation of Amazon from a retail website to a marketplace—into an interesting and lively story.
This is more of a little book than a big one. Being a technologist, I am trained to be concise. The printed version of this edition is 221 pages. This may be too little for a few readers, too much for others, and just right for the rest. So, If you are looking for a 1,000-page treatise on Amazon that can be used as an example of perfect grammar in the High school English grammar class, then this book may not be the right book for you. There are several other books on Amazon with perfect grammar, which are also perfectly boring!
Oh, and this is not THE Amazon Story, just AN Amazon Story. Only 1 Amazon Employee can write THE Amazon Story - Jeff Bezos, and he is busy doing other things. And yes, this book is half about Amazon, half about my trajectory in time and space (aka my life) which intersected with Amazon. Of course, you have my permission to skip the portions about my life :)
This book evolved from a blog which I authored as and when I interviewed & joined Amazon, moved to Seattle, and then "exited" both Amazon and Seattle. While half of the material was added afterwards based on my recollection, the core of this book remains the original blog entries and still has that feel.
A book about Amazon can be pretty dry, so I have tried to add some humor. In my attempt to make this book funny, a few facts may have been stretched. In that regard, I quote this passage from 21 Dog Years: Doing Time @ Amazon.com, written by Mike Daisey, a fellow Amazon alumnus–turned author:
“Some facts were injured in the telling of this story. The truth, however, remains unharmed.”
That applies to this book as well.
Ready to buy? Proceed with caution! And don't drive or operate heavy machinery immediately after reading this book.