The launch this week of Harlequin Plus moves the world’s largest romance publisher beyond books into the broader “content” category, says Andrew AlbanesePublishers Weekly senior writer.

Choosing monthly from “book bundles” across the publisher’s nine imprints, customers of the new multimedia subscription service will receive either e-books or physical copies delivered to their homes. Harlequin Plus themed book bundles for February include the Romantic Comedy Collection; the Sweet Magnolias Starter Pack; Romance by Black Authors; Amish Romance; and LGBTQ+ Romance.

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Will Romance Readers Fall For Subscriptions?

“The service will be available through both the Harlequin Plus website and app, which is critical. When you have an app, you have a customer, and you have customer data. You have a relationship you don’t have when you sell a print book,” Albanese tells CCC.

“It makes perfect sense that Harlequin is the first major publisher in the US to develop a subscription offering,” says Albanese. “Romance readers are voracious and have long been comfortable with digital because digital can keep up with their considerable reading pace.”

Author: Christopher Kenneally

Christopher Kenneally hosts CCC's Velocity of Content podcast series, which debuted in 2006 and is the longest continuously running podcast covering the publishing industry. As CCC's Senior Director, Marketing, he is responsible for organizing and hosting programs that address the business needs of all stakeholders in publishing and research. His reporting has appeared in the New York Times, Boston Globe, Los Angeles Times, The Independent (London), WBUR-FM, NPR, and WGBH-TV.
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