Romance, Historical, Contemporary, Paranormal, Young Adult, Book reviews, industry news, and commentary from a reader's point of view

Wednesday Midday Links: Dear Author Community Bundle

Dear Author Community Picks Bundle IX - JULY 2010Remember when Harlequin wanted another bundle and we got the Dear Author community to contribute suggestions and then vote on those suggestions?   Well, the speed of digital publishing is superluminal these days and the bundle is ready for sale.   You can buy the bundle right now at eHarlequin site for $14.40 or wait until July 1 and buy it from Amazon for the Kindle at $9.99. There are quite a few other bundles for sale including Blogger Bundle Volume VIII: SBTB’s Harlequins That Hooked You which contains Jennifer Crusie’s Anyone But You (love that book!) and Blogger Bundle Volume VII: America’s Bravest by Super Librarian which is comprised of a number of Harlequin Superromances, a line that is fast becoming a favorite.

At the $9.99 price, each book runs about $2.50.   Sweet.

Publishers Marketplace explained why there was a drop (paid link) in sales growth for ebooks in April.

The AAP tracks publishers’ receipts, or wholesale sales. In April, five of the largest publishers dropped their ebook prices across the board, and anyone else selling directly to Apple was getting a lower average wholesale price on at least a portion of their list. So you can see how the market could grow with the launch of the iBookstore, but the AAP numbers could decline.

If you recall, one publisher said that they would have to sell 20-30% more in volume to make up the loss they will suffer from agency pricing. Before April, publishers would sell to retailers at a list price (usually the same as the print book) at some discount (like 50%). From there, retailers would decide on the best price for the customer. Retailers, like Amazon, settled on $9.99 for many hardcovers and trades and lower for mass markets and incurred whatever loss that represented. Now publishers are getting 70% through agency pricing, but 70% off a much lower number. If PM’s assessment is accurate, it means that publishers aren’t making up in volume of sales because the overall publishers’ receipts are down.


If you bought the Nook or Kindle for Father’s Day and are seething about the price drop, seethe no more. The Wall Street Journal reports that you can call and ask for a refund of the difference.


Barnes and Noble is selling a number of older comics and graphic novels for an insanely low price.

Another good deal is from EA Sports.   The company is selling its iPhone games for $.99 like Need for Speed shift, Trivial Pursuit, SimCity, Command & Conquer, etc.   Sale ends today. I bought eight games and wondered how many books I would buy if a publisher had a $1 digital book sale.   A lot.

There have been a whole slew of contemporary romances being sold according to Publishers Marketplace. In the past two months, the following sales have been reported:

Addison Fox, a paranormal author, sold to NAL a series set in a small town Alaska where matching making matriarchs host games that pair the town’s bachelors (and their grandsons) with women from the Lower 48.

Starr Ambrose sold another small town (set in Colorado) contemporary between a hometown girl and a visiting celeb to Pocket.

Sherrill Bodine sold another book in her O’Flynn series to Grand Central. I read the first in the series and found it to be bland and kind of old fashioned.

Jill Shalvis is writing three new books for Berkley and three new book for Grand Central, all contemporary.

Molly O’Keefe, a Harlequin Superromance author, is going mass market with a contemporary featuring a hockey player on the cusp of retirement. This book will be published by Bantam Dell.

And in digging through the deals at PM, I found this gem:

Pamela Clare’s CONNOR’S STORY, in which the son of exiled Scottish rebels who was coerced into fighting with the English against the French travels with a Mohican war chief to a Shawnee village to negotiate for peace only to find a white woman being forced to run the gauntlet and marry an Indian after her family has been slain and discovers that he is her only hope of rescue, to Cindy Hwang at Berkley, by Natasha Kern at Natasha Kern Literary Agency (world).

I think I hear a chorus of “FINALLY!”.


Daily Mail has a long essay by P.C. Cast and her three failed marriages and her new found love with a true Scottish warrior.   I hope I age as well as Cast.   She looks gorgeous in those photos. Maybe it’s love!

I suppose my admiration must have been obvious, because our driver’s wife sidled up to me and said: ‘Och, it’s so sad that such a good man has nae a woman to care for him.’

Goodness, I could have hugged her! ‘You mean he’s not married?’ I smiled. ‘Och, not at all, not at all,’ she lamented. I felt my smile get wider and wider.

It turned out that although he had been in one long-term relationship and has an 18-year-old daughter, he had been single for some time.

Instantly, my attitude transformed. I dropped the mask of reticence and resolved to make it absolutely obvious to Seoras that I was smitten.


Speaking of men, romance, and Mills and Boon, actor Imran Khan is promoting Mills and Boon books in India to   promote a movie called I Hate Luv Stories.

Karan Johar, producer of the film confirmed the news: "Yes, we do have an exclusive association with Mills & Boon. They are coming up with an IHLS special edition, which is a compilation of all the classics. They felt a strong synergy between the theme of our film and a classic Mills & Boon romance," he told  Mumbai Mirror.

The tie-up will produce a series of eight books which will feature the story of Imran's character from the film who doesn't believe in love. The book will also have the cover of  I Hate Luv Storys.

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. jody
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 11:11:12

    Loved the story by and about P.C. Cast–but loved the comments more. Hahahahahaha

  2. TKF
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 11:29:43

    Much as I like Clare's writing, I simply can't celebrate yet another book where the precious white woman has to be saved from the red-skinned savages. In fact, it chaps my hide pretty damn hard.

  3. Kim in Hawaii
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 11:30:52

    Thanks for the link to the PC Cast story – a beautiful, modern love story with a dashing Scotman no less!

    I actually enjoyed Sherrill Bodine’s books and glad to hear she sold another book to Grand Central – just demonstrates that books are like cups of tea. Some readers enjoy Earl Gray, some enjoy Fruit flavored.

  4. Las
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 11:34:05

    Am I the only one who had to read that description of Clare’s book several times? A comma or period somewhere in there would have been helpful.

    And BOOOO! in the Nook refund. I got mine in January, too long ago to qualify.

  5. The Reading Reviewer
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 11:38:18

    I also thank you for the link to the PC Cast book.

    Plus I absolutely agree with Kim from Hawaii about Sherrill Bodine’s books they are fabulous and I for one am thrilled that she has gotten her contract extended and more books in this series are on the way.

    Thankfully there is so much great reading to choose from under every genre that all readers are covered.

  6. Ridley
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 11:58:45


    Oh, please. It’s not like that stuff never happened. This is set during the French and Indian War after all.

    She has a number of positively portrayed American Indian characters in her books, so you can hardly accuse her of being biased. Did you read books one and two in that series? Joseph is a major character, one she says she’d like to write a book for after Connor’s, and doesn’t even have the prophetic dreams that are a staple of Romancelandia Indians.

    Often the racial bias stink eye is entirely warranted, I’ll give you that, but I think it’s unfair to pan this particular series based on the sins of others.

    Also, I feel for authors, but I’m psyched pubs are taking a bath over agency pricing. Schadenfreude is not just for Irish soccer fans.

  7. Evangeline
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 12:47:24

    @TKF: You are not alone.

  8. TKF
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 13:48:44

    @Ridley: I’m willing to admit that not all readers will share my distaste for this set up, but as a Native American, it simply pisses me off to see this tired, racist trope dragged out yet again (and historically this plot is simply not supportable; every “true tale” of capture and rape by Native Americans that I've ever seen was later shown to be false).

  9. Lusty Reader
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 14:12:05

    thanks for sharing the PC Cast romance article. im OBSESSED with true life romance stories and never wouldve seen it otherwise. i got goosebumps reading her essay. i hope they remain just as happy!

  10. Ridley
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 14:12:21


    Oh come on, “every” capture and rape was false? The male DNA different for Native Americans/American Indians? Because men everywhere are especially fond of rape in times of war.

    Dumb trope, fine, but let’s be reasonable. I’m certain both sides had it out on women, though I’m sure they favored outright slaughter rather than abduction in most cases. Is there no way to tell a story during war without being racist?

  11. Wendy
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 14:30:01

    Just wanted to point out that the America’s Bravest bundle includes all the titles in Kathryn Shay’s series that featured female firefighters. Book #3, Code Of Honor, was already made available in the first Dear Author bundle – so if you read that story and loved it? Now is your chance to score the other three titles digitally and complete the series.


  12. Jayne
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 14:59:01

    Okay here’s a “finally!” from me and I intend to at least try the book to see what’s in it.

  13. SFC
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 15:56:54

    @TKF: I couldn’t agree more. I cringed and rolled my eyes when I saw the description of that tired, offensive setup…yet again.

  14. tricia
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 16:09:47

    Jane, I clicked on the Amazon link and the books in your bundle aren’t listed individually. And there isn’t a link to the specific bundle on eHarlequin. I can’t read the titles in the graphic (old person eyesight!)

  15. SarahT
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 16:35:08

    @tricia: Courtesy of the Harlequin website:

    Bundle contains: The Sweetest Taboo by Alison Kent, The Older Woman by Cheryl Reavis, Shotgun Nanny by Nancy Warren and Cullen’s Bride by Fiona Brand.

    I have it in my already overflowing shopping cart!

  16. tricia
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 16:42:30

    @SarahT: Thank you so much!

  17. TKF
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 16:44:24

    @Ridley: Every last one that I’ve seen, yes. It was actually kind of a big deal when I was researching and studying the mythos of the Wild West and Native Peoples. All the documented cases turned to be either white men posing as Native Americans or women falsely claiming rape (or their men claiming it for them) to justify that they'd assimilated to the tribe.

    If you have documentation that shows something else, I'd certainly be interested to see it.

  18. Jayne
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 17:47:31

    @SarahT: The Older Woman is great and part of a wonderful series.

  19. Miki S
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 19:52:38

    @Wendy (sorry, but the “link” arrow is not displaying here at work to do this properly):

    Woot indeed! When is Kathryn Shay’s backlist being released? She’s one of my all-time SuperRomance faves.

  20. sao
    Jun 23, 2010 @ 23:30:28

    Eastern Native Americans did capture children. Their tribes were ravaged by disease and they were in danger of extinction. There are several narratives of negotiations to get children back (often years later), of white women captured as children and married at thirteen.

    Given that marriage and marital rights were considered quite differently in English America at the time, it is very hard to determine exactly how willing those marriages are.

    Most of us wouldn’t consider a 13 yo girl capable of consenting.

    I think the English writing about the experiences of these girls assumed that no white girl would consent to marriage or sex with a Native American.

    Native American life, was, in general, poorer but freer than English settler life. There was no clear superiority of one lifestyle over the other.

    Humans have a natural tendency to create emotional bonds, particularly through sex. A relationship that begins as rape might not stay that way, particularly if the woman realizes that her other options are limited. (As in she’d be scorned as a fallen woman and her child rejected as a bastard if she returned to her old life and accepted as a wife and mother if she stayed.)

    Women who were raped had no incentive to admit it or write about it as they were no longer “good.”

    In short, I suspect good data is lacking.

  21. Books on My Radar for July
    Jun 24, 2010 @ 06:01:31

    […] Dear Author also has another Blogger Bundle out in July. […]

  22. Wendy
    Jun 24, 2010 @ 09:48:40

    @Miki S: The official release date for the America’s Bravest bundle is July 1, but it’s listed at a variety of digital retailers for pre-order right now.

    I’m not sure if there are immediate plans to digitize other early titles in Shay’s backlist, but maybe if this bundle sells well enough, HQ will entertain the notion. We can hope anyway :)

  23. Sarah
    Jun 24, 2010 @ 09:57:57

    Couldn’t agree more about the Bodine book. It was just plain old bland. I’m surprised she managed to sell anotoher in that series.

  24. funny site
    Sep 07, 2010 @ 16:14:45

    I love your post. It was very nice to read.
    I wonder how I didn’t find this blog earlier.

    I will surely spread the word. Many of my twitter friends will appreciate it.

    Thank you and keep it up!

%d bloggers like this: