As reported earlier, Harlequin will be discontinuing the use of the "Silhouette" brand as of April and will be expanding the Harlequin line to include the Silhouette imprints: Desire, Romantic Suspense and Special Edition. The number of books released in each line will remain exactly the same, according to Randall Toye of Harlequin. The move is expected to help the three imprints benefit from the strength of the Harlequin brand and will not impact readers or the books they love.
Says Toye: "In the rapidly changing world of media and entertainment, publishing, too, is experiencing exciting new changes. To position ourselves for opportunities and growth in the future, we want to expand and celebrate our strength and diversity as the leading publisher of entertainment for women. Our current solid reputation in this arena and our strong identity continues to be the envy of many publishers. In the past 15 years, Harlequin has come to mean much more than series romance. We have expanded into mainstream fiction and romance, Christian fiction, African-American fiction, teen fiction and nonfiction. As we move toward the next 15 years, we hope that Harlequin will mean even more.
"One of Harlequin's strengths lies with the balance between our respect for our history and developing new paths for the future. Since the mid-1980s, we have proudly published the Silhouette imprint and have been privileged to work with many authors who have become the enduring stars of the romance genre. Today, looking toward a world where brands are becoming even more important, we felt that it made sense to offer our series romance titles under one banner.
"Although the series that carried the Silhouette name will now appear as Harlequin, the emotional, compelling, exciting stories offered in Desire, Special Edition and Romantic Suspense are not changing. Nor is there a change in the number of titles we are publishing in these lines. We are very excited about the future for our authors as they become published under the Harlequin brand. Rebranding the Silhouette series as Harlequin will ensure that these series benefit from the promotional resources dedicated to the Harlequin brand and will strengthen the Harlequin consumer brand as the market leader in Romance fiction. In the digital future, search and discovery will become even more important, and customers' ability to find our authors and books will be enhanced by the use of the Harlequin brand. We will continue to publish great books that we are all proud to work on, and to read."
In addition to the name change for Silhouette, Harlequin will also be removing the "Steeple Hill" name from the Love Inspired imprints. They will be known, as of April, as Love Inspired, Love Inspired Historical and Love Inspired Suspense. This move capitalizes on the success Harlequin has had with the "Love Inspired" novels. Incidentally, as of January, Love Inspired Historical will expand to four books a month, up from its current two releases.
OK, readers, what do you think about these changes? Are you ready for Harlequin Desire? Do you already consider the Silhouette books as Harlequins? And do you want even more Love Inspired? Comment below.