Catch Up With Your Favourite Harlequin With the Backlist eBook Program

by Jenny Bullough, Manager, Digital Content

Ever read a book you loved so much you wanted to run out and buy 10 more just like it? Ever discover a new author and want to read everything she’s ever written? Ever pick up a book, get halfway through and find out it’s part of an ongoing miniseries and want to read all of them, in the right order, immediately?

These reading emergencies have happened to all of us on the digital team – which is why we launched our backlist ebook program! (For those who don’t know, “backlist” is a publishing term used to refer to anything published in the past; “frontlist” is the current year’s new books.)

Sure we’ve published a lot of ebooks since we started doing things digitally in 2005 (around 6,000 – not that we’re counting!) – but as we all know, Harlequin has been around for a lot longer than that (over 60 years – again, not that we’re counting!) and has published more books than anyone can count (and yes, we’ve tried counting)!  We want to take that backlist and turn it into ebooks, so that readers can find whatever they need – whether it’s backlist from a beloved author, or a newly discovered series, or a complete miniseries.

That’s our backlist-into-ebook strategy in a nutshell. With potentially tens of thousands of books to turn into ebooks, it can be hard to know where to start! In 2010, we’re focusing on:

— Great series like Harlequin Presents with lots of older books not yet in digital formats
— Authors with lots of older titles
— Miniseries ahead of their time like Tales of the Sea from Silhouette Romance

Of course, our goal is to eventually have every Harlequin (or Silhouette, or MIRA, or HQN, or Steeple Hill…) book available in all ebook formats – but nothing is ever that easy! As with any big undertaking, there are major challenges – mostly to do with legal rights and digital files. For anything published pre-2000 it’s a challenge to find the digital files, if there are any, for the text and cover. Sometimes they’re in arcane formats and have to be converted to PDF before they can be converted into ebook formats. For anything published pre-1995, the electronic rights are not usually spelled out in the contract, and unless the right to publish electronically clearly belongs to Harlequin, we don’t publish it in ebooks.

We want you to know that if there’s a book you love or need that you haven’t found in ebooks, or an older book that you’ve suggested that hasn’t made it into the program, it’s probably because we’re still sorting out the rights situation, or trying to find the electronic files for the text or the cover in the archives of one of our 3 Editorial offices.

That said, there are a TON of books that we have the rights to and the files for and we just don’t know about them yet! We are always open to suggestions from readers, and we are always happy to hear from authors who want to see their books in digital! So if you have a recommendation for a book or series of books you’d like to see available in ebooks, let us know in the comments!

Check out the eHarlequin eBook store monthly for all new releases in both our frontlist and backlist.  Now’s a great time to stop by—you can get 20% off all selected titles in our eBooks Backlist Bookshelf. And come back to the Harlequin Blog in June for an inside scoop on new backlist releases from Amy.

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Comments ( 38 )
  1. Jenny Bullough
    May 20, 2010 at 12:08 pm

    brooksse, thanks for these great suggestions! Kiss & Makeup should be available next month; we’ll add the other Alison Kent (and more) plus the Marilyn Pappano series to our lineup ASAP!

  2. SarahT
    May 26, 2010 at 9:28 am

    I’ve just discovered the joys of Helen Brenna’s Super Romances. I’ve bought all of her books which are available digitally and I’d love to get the opportunity to read her first two books, ‘Treasure’ and ‘Dad for Life’. I’d be thrilled if you’d consider adding them to your backlist ebook program.


  3. Jenny Bullough
    May 31, 2010 at 4:00 pm

    SarahT, thanks for the suggestion! We’ll add her to our list!

  4. eRomance Booming: Harlequin Launches Carina Press | The Buzz on Ereading
    June 8, 2010 at 9:10 pm

    […] it. You can see how downloadable ebooks fit in perfectly! In June Harlequin hit a new milestone by publishing 381 ebooks: all of our frontlist (ie. the print books published that month), the 37 Carina Press titles, and […]

  5. Kimberley
    June 28, 2010 at 3:21 am

    I second Carole’s recommendation for Mary Burchell, particularly the Warrendar saga books!

  6. Marmar
    September 21, 2010 at 4:49 am

    This is great news I wish you will digitize as far back as the 90’s , 80’s and also 70’s Harlequin and Mills and boon romances , they were great books especially the best sellers.

    I wish you could digitize the following books soon
    Marriage Meltdown (1997) by Emma Darcy
    Just One Night: 9 Months Later by Kathryn Shay
    He’s My Husband(1998) by Lindsay Armstrong
    The Marriage War (1997) By Charlotte Lamb

  7. HappyPlace
    October 5, 2010 at 5:21 am

    Please tell me international shoppers will also be able to buy the back-list ebooks? Are there geographical restrictions to any of the books?

  8. Mervat
    November 1, 2010 at 4:33 am


    great news I love the old harlequins and Mills & boon books specially books from the 80’s and 90’s.
    can u tell me when will Harlequin start to digitizing the 80’s and 90’s books.

  9. Zelda Wendy Groenewald
    November 25, 2010 at 2:13 am

    I have a long list so bear with me please:

    The Wedding Belles Series
    Book 01 – Annie Says I Do by Carole Buck
    Book 02 – Peachy’s Proposal by Carole Buck
    Book 01 – Annie Says I Do by Carole Buck

    The Lone Star Social Club Series
    Book 01 – I’m Having Your Baby?! by Linda Turner
    Book 02 – A Marriage-Minded Man? by Linda Turner
    Book 03 – The Proposal by Linda Turner
    Book 04 – Christmas Lone-Star Style by Linda Turner

    Errant Angel by Justine Davis

    The Jones Gang Series by Christine Rimmer
    1. Wagered Woman (1993)
    2. Man of the Mountain (1994)
    3. Sweetbriar Summit (1994)
    4. A Home for the Hunter (1994)
    5. Sunshine and the Shadow Master (1995)
    6. The Man, the Moon and the Marriage Vow (1996)
    7. No Less Than a Lifetime (1996)
    8. Honeymoon Hotline (1996)
    9. A Hero for Sophie Jones (1998)
    10. The Taming of Billy Jones (1998)
    11. Husband in Training (1999)

    Mind Reader by Victoria Cole

    Tallchiefs Series by Cait London
    1. The Cowboy and the Cradle (1996)
    2. Tallchief’s Bride (1996)
    3. Tallchief for Keeps (1997)
    4. The Groom Candidate (1997)
    5. The Seduction of Fiona Tallchief (1998)
    6. Rafe Palladin: Man of Secrets (1998)
    7. The Perfect Fit (1998)

    Conard County Series by Rachel Lee
    1. Exile’s End (1992)
    2. Cherokee Thunder (1992)
    3. Miss Emmaline and the Archangel (1993)
    4. Ironheart (1993)
    5. Lost Warriors (1993)
    6. Point of No Return (1994)
    7. Thunder Mountain (1994)
    8. A Question of Justice (1994)
    9. A Conrad County Reckoning (1996)
    10. Nighthawk (1997)
    11. Cowboy Comes Home (1998)
    12. The Catch of Conard County (1998)
    13. Boots and Badges (1999)
    14. Involuntary Daddy (1999)
    15. The Dream Marine (2002) (in The Heart’s Command)
    16. I’ll Be Home (2004) (in A Soldier’s Christmas)
    17. A Soldier for All Seasons (2007) (in Holiday Heroes)
    18. A Soldier’s Homecoming (2008)
    19. Protector Of One (2009)
    20. The Unexpected Hero (2009)
    21. The Man from Nowhere (2010)

    Women of Glory by Lindsay McKenna
    1. No Quarter Given (1991)
    2. The Gauntlet (1991)
    3. Under Fire (1991)
    4. Point of Departure (1993)

    Moriah’s Mutiny by Elizabeth Bevarly

    Vows Series by Sherryl Woods
    1. Love (1992)
    2. Honor (1992)
    3. Cherish (1992)
    4. Kate’s Vow (1993)
    5. A Daring Vow (1993)
    6. A Vow to Love (1994)

    Million-Dollar Destinies Series by Sherryl Woods
    1. Isn’t It Rich? (2004)
    2. Priceless (2004)
    3. Treasured (2004)
    4. Destiny Unleashed (2004)

    That’s all for now, but I am sure I can think of more.
    I also have a question, will you be re-releasing the original Loveswept (May 1983 to January 1999) books as well?


  10. Robin
    January 8, 2011 at 10:50 pm

    I have read so many great books by so many great authors, that there’s too many to name.

    I’m just wondering about one in particular. Barabra McCaulley. It’ll be four years this April since her last Secrets! book.

    She was writing about the Blackhawk family and had one more family member to go. I was looking forward to the last story in the series and no word on what happened to Barbara or the series.

    It’s been about five almost six years, I think since she last wrote on her website. Did she retire from the romance scene or is she too sick to write?

    It would be nice to know either way and I’m sure there are other fans out there wondering the same thing.

  11. Robin
    January 8, 2011 at 11:09 pm

    Zelda Wendy Groenewald:

    The Wedding Belles Series
    Book 01 – Annie Says I Do by Carole Buck
    Book 02 – Peachy’s Proposal by Carole Buck
    *Book 03 – Zoe and the Best Man by Carole Buck*

    You accidently listed the same book twice, and I Googled them to find out the actual title of book #3. I remember reading them but not the titles at first.

    Here’s the list Secrets! by Barbara McCauley, dating back to the early ’90s.


    Blackhawk’s Sweet Revenge (July ’99
    Secret Baby Santos (August ’99)
    Killian’s Passion (September ’99)
    Callan’s Proposition (April ’00)
    Gabriel’s Honor #1024 (July ’00) ((Intimate Moments))
    Resse’s Wild Wager(April ’01)
    Sinclair’s Surprise Baby (November ’01)
    Taming Blackhawk ( May ’02)
    In Blackhawk’s BED (June ’02)
    That Blackhawk Bride (February ’03)
    Miss Pruitt’s Private Life (July ’04
    Blackhawk Legacy (December ’04) ((Silhouette Books))
    Blackhawk’s Betrayal (October ’06)
    Blackhawk’s Bond (December ’06)
    Blackhawk’s Affair #1790 (April ’07)

  12. Ruth martin
    April 19, 2011 at 9:18 pm

    As I have eye problems I couldn’t read anymore or drive. I have depth perceptions. My husband got an iPad for me. I found ebooks. I can enlarge the print and I can read again. It is a wonderful feeling. I would like to see the whole series by Rachel lee the series of conard county. It started in 1992 I believe. I had the whole series in books. I read them many times. Overtime. And I know I will read them many time in the future. Please ebook them all if possible. Thank you in advance. 21 books.

  13. Gina
    November 11, 2011 at 7:59 pm

    I have been trying to find a book from Harlequin presents, 90’s I think. The strory is set in New Zealand, she is a romance writer and Gabriel (the hero)aka Suriel is a publisher of romance/erotic books. The main conflict is that she married his dad; his dad is a fertilization Dr. and promised to help her have a baby. Can you tell me author/title/and if it is available in ebook?

  14. Zelda Wendy Groenewald
    November 19, 2011 at 6:25 pm

    Gina the name of the book you are talking about is Honeymoon Baby by Susan Napier.

  15. Jessica Stangland
    February 3, 2012 at 11:05 am

    I am desperate to get the
    1993 Silhouette Christmas Stories on ebook

    It contains one of my absolute favorite stories but its not on ebook yet. Any chance it will be soon?

  16. Wendy
    January 13, 2014 at 10:43 pm

    Really would like:
    The Catch of Conard Country and Boots and Badges Rachel Lee

  17. Angela Harris
    September 12, 2014 at 7:20 am

    I was hoping to see several of your 80’s books in ebook format.

    Darker Side of Desire #746
    Escape from the Harem #938
    Tangled Hearts
    The Wrong Mirror

  18. Teresa
    September 20, 2014 at 11:30 pm

    The Wrong Mirror by Emma Darcy

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