Product placement in books?

I just finished reading “The Red Pole of Macau” and was surprised or more like confused at first.  First of all, this is not a review, I’ll leave that for another post.  The book was not half bad, easy light reading with a Chinese female superhero, channeling Chung-li.  Just a little bit.  This is not a porno book, not that i read those kind of books, no matter what the title says and this is a family blog hahaha.

What got me was how detailed the author was in describing clothing or coffee, maybe detailed is not the right word, more like the brand is always mentioned.  She slipped into her Giordano shirt or she put on her adidas track pants or she drank her Starbucks instant coffee, among others.  Those were the ones that stuck out at me.  I was thinking why do these labels keep on recurring? If I got a £1000 every time I read those brands in the book, I’d probably have £100,000.  I thought it was weirdest thing.  It didn’t click until towards the end of the novel, when product placement went through my mind.

That couldn’t be it, could it? Only rappers and TV shows and movies did that sort of thing.  Only when I went to leave a review of this book on the library website did I discover the truth.  Other readers had noticed it as well and that’s not all.  In reviews of his other novels, product placement is front and centre.  I was pretty shocked.  When did this happen in literature? Is this a new trend, cause this is the first time I’ve noticed this.  I don’t know how I feel about this, fine I do know how I feel.  I weep for the written word and I will burn all novels.  OK that’s too much, I take it back.  I guess this has turned into some kind of book review.  Not my problem. 

Have any of you read books with product placement?