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The Old Harlequin Romances


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Showing 1-25 of 172 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Nov 14, 2009 3:11:25 PM PST
Whisper says:
Does anyone ever miss the old Harlequin romances that actually had a story and had beautiful titles ( ie not involving a billionare, millionaire, secret baby pregnancy, misstress, or convienient marriage in the title)? I especially loved the beautiful multicoloured covers... I used to spend hours as a kid colour coding my mom's collection even before I ever read one...

I would really love to read some of them again and I think it would be great if they were available in digital format so I could read them on my kindle .

Some of my favorites included;

Another Time - Susan Napier
Capable of Feeling - Penny Jordan
Waking up- Amanda Carpenter
Blind Date -Emma Darcy
Dying for you- Charlotte Lamb
Memories of the Past- Carole Mortimer
Abode of Princess- Jayne Bauling

Do you think it would ever be possible to get these oldies reissued as ebooks or Kindle books? I think there would be a lot of people like myself willing to buy them just for a trip down memory lane.

I used to adore Harlequin/Mills and Boon but I am heartily sick of the " Pregnant Billionare's Fobidden Mistresses'Convienient Love Child'sMarriage" storyline. UGH!!!!!

Posted on Nov 14, 2009 5:08:37 PM PST
Jane Doe says:
I love old Harlequin romances. My mom has a collection of them, and I always enjoy finding new titles that we both enjoy!

Posted on Nov 14, 2009 5:11:15 PM PST
Jane Doe says:
I love old Harlequin romances. My mom has a collection of them, and I always enjoy finding new titles on Amazon.com that we both enjoy!

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 14, 2009 5:20:27 PM PST
Mae Adamson says:
Count me in as another lover of the old Harlequins-you know, the ones that did not require a hero to be richer than Bill Gates. I don't know how lucrative it would be for Harlequin to put those old titles on Kindle, but there are lots of old books available on Amazon and PBS.

Posted on Nov 14, 2009 5:53:04 PM PST
Keep an eye out. Harlequin is re-releasing some of their older books. Check out their web site. Not sure how far back they are going. I too hope they will release them for the Kindle.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 14, 2009 5:59:21 PM PST
I totally agree!! I devoured these in the late 60s/early 70s and was always at the bookstore when each month's new shipment came out. Loved the covers and storylines. Nothing today seems to come close. Mary Burchell and Sara Seale were a couple of favorites.

Posted on Nov 14, 2009 6:50:28 PM PST
Melanie says:
I loved and still enjoy revisiting the old ones from the 70s and 80s. Anne Mather - Anne Hampson - Violet Winspear - Roberta Leigh - Charlotte Lamb =))

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 15, 2009 2:00:55 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 15, 2009 5:03:25 AM PST
JennyG. says:
Love older Mills & Boon and Harlequin Presents! :)

Those older books have loads of sexual tension, story, action, everything is shown instead of told which makes the emotional pull amazing. They make you feel and anticipate.

Nowadays the M&B/HPs are mostly boring with unnecessary descriptions, too much emphasis on inner thoughts, no story, no action. The first meeting between the hero and heroine takes either chapters to achieve or is taking place for several chapters. Booooring!

And let's not forget the ridiculous titles of the new books. I have to check several times whether I already have the book by the only three writers (MR, LG & JB) I still buy and one or two of them is/are going downhill. What the h*** is going on?!?

My favorite writers are Lynne Graham, Michelle Reid, Jacqueline Baird (their books I still buy), Charlotte Lamb, Penny Jordan, Carole Mortimer, Patrica Wilson, Sally Wentworth, Anne Hampson, Anne Mather, Margaret Pargeter (I don't like some of MP's books because the hero is too cruel) Lee Wilkinson and so many more...

I tried a book or two by Violet Winspear but I didn't like it mostly because I felt that I got too little insight into hero's feelings towards the heroine.

Besides the MR, LG, JB books I mostly buy older M&B/HPs these days.

Jenny

Posted on Nov 15, 2009 3:33:09 AM PST
Looks like we'd all better email HM&B to let them know how we feel! Particularly to let them know there are still readers around who enjoy a real story.

The problem with most publishing houses today, IMO, is they believe that, to ensure big-number sales, they have to appeal to the lowest common denominator.

Posted on Nov 15, 2009 6:07:28 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 15, 2009 6:09:51 AM PST
Moxie says:
Harlequin has re-issued some of their original books from the 40s and 50s. I haven't read any of these yet, but the covers look fantastic!
Virgin with Butterflies (Harlequin Vintage Collection)
No Nice Girl (Harlequin Vintage Collection)
I'll Bury My Dead (Harlequin Vintage Collection)
Pardon My Body (Harlequin Vintage Collection)
Kiss Your Elbow (Harlequin Vintage)

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 15, 2009 9:58:50 AM PST
Mae Adamson says:
"Looks like we'd all better email HM&B to let them know how we feel! Particularly to let them know there are still readers around who enjoy a real story."

Harlequin does seek the opinion of its reader through the Tell Herlequin surveys. I found out about it from a post at PBS and have been on the panel for a year or so. They even occassionally send panel members unreleases books to read and comment on.

I have registered my opinions re the absurd titles, adults who don't practice safe sex(enough with the secret babies already!) and lack of character development.
I think it is fairly easy to get on the panel. I communicated my interest in joining the panel, they sent me a survey and that was it.

I know there is no way to turn back the clock, but I think becoming involved is a good way to let Harlequin know what its readers want.

As for the old writers, I find that some of them lose their mojo over time. The worst Harlequin I have ever read was a recent book by Ann Mather-an old favorite from the 80's. Some of the vintage writers seem to have trouble writing for the new perceived audience.

I wish Harlequin had a division catering to those of us who like the old fashioned romances. Since they don't, I try to identify the best among the newer writers and stick with them. Sandra Marton, Jane Porter and Nathalie Anderson are among my current favorites,

Posted on Nov 15, 2009 10:10:35 AM PST
Ridley says:
They are rereleasing a lot of older titles as ebooks. They haven't done too many, or gone further back than the 90s, so far, but they've indicated on blogs that they'd like to get much of their backlist up as ebooks. They've also expressed interest in going DRM-free as well, so keep your fingers crossed!

Posted on Nov 15, 2009 11:47:53 AM PST
A. M. Ponzo says:
I loved the old Harlequins and HPs. Cut my teeth on romance with those books. Especially loved Carole Mortimore, Anne Mather, Violet Winspear, Charlotte Lamb, Anne Hampson and Anne Wentworth. I really liked Betty Neels with her Dutch doctors and English nurses and Mary Burchell with the books about Oscar Warrender (sp?) and the musical people.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 15, 2009 12:33:11 PM PST
flipoid says:
There are several of the Betty Neels books available as reissues. If you have a Kindle, just search the Kindle Store for Betty Neels.

I remember reading the Harlequins in high school and really enjoying them. I don't read a lot of the current ones (I haven't touched the Harlequin Blaze since they first came out--the only one I read was, to me, way too explicit in the love/sex scenes), but there are certain authors I still read.

I would love to see the backlist Harlequins available again, especially in digital format. I remember that Janet Dailey did a series where each of 50 books took place in a different state, and certain authors wrote books that took place in Australia. They were a lot of fun to read.

Posted on Nov 15, 2009 3:49:47 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 15, 2009 4:07:14 PM PST
Whisper says:
Thanks Mae. That is a great suggestion. I think it would be great if anyone who is keen on having their favorite authors re-released in e-book format sent an email to HM&B. Personally I think it would be a great money maker for them since none of te books are in print rigt now hence they are not making any money on them.

I would love to have the opportunity to browse all the books by a favorite author and be able to collect them all. Maybe if enough pple request this they will think about it. Post if any of you wrote them a letter! I did!

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 15, 2009 6:05:12 PM PST
Agent Scully says:
Wow, these look more like noir/pulp fiction than romance. Is that what HQ used to publish?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 15, 2009 6:18:11 PM PST
Melanie says:
I saw theses at BN the other day. They were shelved in romance, but they were not romance and nothing that I was interested in.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2009 5:15:05 AM PST
A. M. Ponzo says:
flipoid,
I read that Janet Dailey series. Loved them. I think I might still have them in a box somewhere.

Posted on Nov 16, 2009 12:29:49 PM PST
Michigangirl says:
I like the old HPs but I really don't like the old old harlequins. Not that I don't own about 100 of them, but I always have to force myself to read them. A little too old for me I guess?

The old old ones that look like this one for example;
Return to Tuckarimba (Harlequin Romance, 1960)

I'd love for all the HPs to be available in ebook, especially if you could group buy authors..that would be awesome.

However, aside from the titles being a vast improvement, I find that the old ones have just as many problems as the new ones, just different.

Many many times I've read the older HPs and had it be forced down my throat that the reason why the marriage failed previously was because she was just too young to handle it, when in reality he just never bothered to talk to her. It's especially annoying when her 'new' information and understanding comes secondhand from her husband's life long friends that she's never met before despite the fact that they were married for how many years before the breakup?

Don't get me wrong, I still love them, I just find that there were just as many, if different, issues with the old ones as there are with the new ones. In both old and new there are still those gems where an author just got everything right.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2009 1:15:10 PM PST
Oh yes. I definitely miss the old school Harlequin Presents. I am trying to collect as many of the older ones by the authors I like as I can.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 17, 2009 6:18:16 PM PST
Jane Doe says:
I like the old Harlequin romances better because the male and female roles are more traditional and old-fashioned. The male is strong, and the breadwinner in the relationship, and the female is kind and sweet,
and doesn't have a career. The man is older than the women, and he takes care of her. I don't like the new Harlequin romances where the
relationship is equal and both the man and women have a career.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 17, 2009 6:24:10 PM PST
Jane Doe says:
I like Janet Dailey Harlequin romances too! I just bought one today called "Strange Bedfellow," Janet Dailey Americana Series.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 17, 2009 6:26:37 PM PST
Jane Doe says:
The old Harlequin romances are nice stories where everything turns out alright at the end. I love them!

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 17, 2009 6:32:06 PM PST
Jane Doe says:
I think they should re-release a lot of the old Harlequin romance titles
from the 70's, 80's, and 90's in book format. I agree with you. I think
having your favorite authors re-released in e-book format would be
a great money maker for them since none of the books are in print right now.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 17, 2009 6:41:48 PM PST
Jane Doe says:
I know. I am so glad they have several Betty Neels books available now as reissues. I buy a lot of them! I don't read a lot of the current
Harlequin romances either. They're not traditional enough for me. I don't like the explicit love/sex scenes either. I like the way the older
books are written better. I just bought a book by Janet Dailey, the
Americana series, wher 50 books took place in a different state. The
book I bought is called "Strange Bedfellows" and takes place in Rhode
Island. I love it!
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Discussion in:  Romance forum
Participants:  62
Total posts:  172
Initial post:  Nov 14, 2009
Latest post:  Jun 21, 2014

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