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Old 09-21-2007, 04:21 PM   #1
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Falling in Love with E-books -- Harlequin does the full "e"

According to Publishers Weekly, romance publisher Harlequin will now be releasing e-book versions of all of their titles simultaneously with the paper versions. That's 120 titles per month.

Okay, okay. So most of the people here don't read romance novels. That's not important. Those who do tend to be voracious readers. They also tend to be well outside of both the SF and gadgeteer profiles, two groups that have already embraced e-books. I see this as an important sign of the e-book industry dipping into the mainstream market.

Harlequin also seems to "get it". They're including both MobiPocket and Sony formats, and the e-books will be "priced slightly lower" than the paper versions.
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Old 09-21-2007, 04:45 PM   #2
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Many of my wife's older friends will love to hear this as they seem to read about 120 romance novels a month. One already has the Sony Reader and exhausted the Connect Store's offerings in that area. With this news they should sell to the rest of the group.
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Old 09-21-2007, 04:47 PM   #3
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It is a big deal, and it's a very good sign! The folks over at Dear Author (whom we esteem highly) will be pretty happy about it, I expect.

I'm pleased to see that the Sony format is on their list -- no I don't read romance, myself, but it's another sign that the Reader is catching on.

This quote is awesome:
Quote:
The company said it is launching this initiative because its customers embrace the immediacy and portability of the format and the titles do not go out of stock.
They are actually paying attention!
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Old 09-21-2007, 08:21 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by jasonkchapman View Post
According to Publishers Weekly, romance publisher Harlequin will now be releasing e-book versions of all of their titles simultaneously with the paper versions. That's 120 titles per month.
Now we're talking! I mean, I couldn't give a rip about romance novels myself (although my wife goes through them like water). But this site:

http://www.publishersweekly.com/article/CA6465481.html

lists them as #33 in the world with over $400 million in annual revenues. Bring it on, baby! Maybe I'll have to buy a reader for my wife for Christmas.
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Old 09-21-2007, 09:40 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by vivaldirules View Post
Now we're talking! I mean, I couldn't give a rip about romance novels myself (although my wife goes through them like water). But this site:

http://www.publishersweekly.com/article/CA6465481.html

lists them as #33 in the world with over $400 million in annual revenues. Bring it on, baby! Maybe I'll have to buy a reader for my wife for Christmas.
What you really mean is buy yourself a new PRS505 and give your wife your PRS500. Yes, we know what you mean.
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Old 09-21-2007, 10:32 PM   #6
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I think that this is great news, not just for romance readers, but for all ebook lovers. Romance readers account for 50% of the mass market purchases so if a great portion of those readers start clamouring for ebooks, all publishers will start to pay attention which is a big benefit for anyone who loves the e format.

Now, we just have to get on Penguin's case for charging a premium for ebooks.
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Old 09-22-2007, 06:07 AM   #7
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Will they sell DRM or proper books?
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Old 09-22-2007, 07:51 AM   #8
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Will they sell DRM or proper books?
We're talking here about the ultimate in "read and throw away" books, not literary classics that one would wish to re-read a dozen times. It really is entirely irrelevent for this type of material whether or not it has DRM.
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Old 09-22-2007, 09:05 AM   #9
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They are using DRM. Quote from their site:
Quote:
If you are using Microsoft Reader eBooks…

Microsoft Reader eBooks may be moved from computer to computer, as long as each computer has a copy of Microsoft Reader that is activated to the same Passport account as the computer used to download the ebook.

If you are using Mobipocket eBooks…

You can read Mobipocket eBooks on 3 machines. You need to install Mobipocket Reader on any machine on which you intend to read a Mobipocket eBook. You must then register a Mobipocket PID at this site for each machine on which you intend to read a Mobipocket eBook.
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Old 09-22-2007, 12:18 PM   #10
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I read a mystery ebook recently that I was surprised to find was a Harlequin imprint. So they do more than romance, although maybe not much more. When I visited the site the mystery imprint is "Worldwide Library".
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Old 09-22-2007, 12:36 PM   #11
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I can see that. Romance, itself, has developed a huge number of sub-genres, including time travel romance, SF romance, etc. It would make sense for Harlequin to have other imprints for titles that are more sub- than -genre, so to speak.

The Wikipedia article has this to say:
Quote:
Harlequin has expanded its range of books, offering everything from romance novels under its various Harlequin and Silhouette imprints; thrillers and commercial literary fiction under the MIRA imprint; erotic fiction under the Spice imprint; Bridget Jones-style 'Chick lit' under its Red Dress Ink imprint; fantasy books under the LUNA imprint; inspirational fiction published under the name Steeple Hill and Steeple Hill Café; African-American romance under its Kimani Press imprints; male action adventure books under Gold Eagle imprint and single title romances under the HQN imprint.
The end of the article lists all of the other presses and imprints under the Harlequin umbrella. They're big enough to make a splash. Hopefully, they'll throw enough water on the rest of the industry to get them thinking about getting into the pool.
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Old 09-22-2007, 12:38 PM   #12
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What you really mean is buy yourself a new PRS505 and give your wife your PRS500. Yes, we know what you mean.
Ouch! Why does truth hurt so much?
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Old 09-22-2007, 04:05 PM   #13
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I read a mystery ebook recently that I was surprised to find was a Harlequin imprint. So they do more than romance, although maybe not much more. When I visited the site the mystery imprint is "Worldwide Library".
Harlequin became popular with and it known for "cookie cutter" romances. The idea is that if you like one, you'll like the others, and a reader can pick any Harlequin title off a rack with reasonable assumptions about what they are getting. They are crafted to a careful template, and designed to be similar.

But in recent years, Harlequin has been attempting to expand beyond those confines, and in the process is broadening the idea of the romance genre. The traditional "bodice ripper" is still with us, but we now see mystery romances, paranormal romances, fantasy romances, and other cross-overs.

One current effort is their Luna imprint, which are fantasy romance crossovers. They are interesting in that romance is a sub-plot: the heroine is copying with other concerns, and getting the guy isn't the most important thing on her mind at the time.

I'm fond of Laura Anne Gilman's "Retrievers" series, set in a present day New York City where magic happens to work. Her heroine, Wren Valere, is a Talent - someone capable of using a magical force called "current" to perform various actions. In Wren's case, it means she can find and recover missing objects (which often means stealing them back from whoever stole them in the first place).

Wren lives in a world where most people are "nulls", incapable of sensing or using magic, and mostly unaware magic and magic users exist. She must cope with the attempts of the Cosa Nostradamus, a mage council, to control all magic users; increasing hostility between normals and magical creatures known as the Fatea; plus developing romantic feelings between her and her "null" business partner, Sergei as she attempts to fulfill contracts Sergei has negotiated for her. Her best friend is a demon named PB who looks like a four foot tall polar bear, and electronic devices misbehave in her presence because current and electricity don't mix well.

Great fun, and not at all what you expect in a romance.
______
Dennis
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Old 09-23-2007, 08:16 AM   #14
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We're talking here about the ultimate in "read and throw away" books, not literary classics that one would wish to re-read a dozen times. It really is entirely irrelevent for this type of material whether or not it has DRM.
Ehrm, I'm sorry but my mother and my sister do re-read them and I know many more people who do. I also read them but not re-read them which isn't strange since I never re-read a book of any genre... (good memory + bored easily...)

And eh, I really like it that Harlequin is doing this, allthough I already thought they did since I've been on eharlequin quite a few times already

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Old 09-23-2007, 08:17 AM   #15
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They are using DRM. Quote from their site:
Since when is Mobipocket's DRM secure (again!!!!!)?

No probs for me hehehe

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