”Harlequin Books Limited—now Harlequin Enterprises – was founded in 1949 in Canada as a small printer, packager, and distributor of books. In the nineteen-fifties, Harlequin started reprinting titles from Mills & Boon, a British publisher of popular romance novels. In 1972, Harlequin acquired Mills & Boon, and soon was synonymous with the romance novel. By 2012, romance novels were a 1.5-billion-dollar-a-year business that made up nearly seventeen per cent of fiction sales. But, for the past several years, Harlequin’s sales have declined as people have started getting their romance from erotic – and often self-published – e-books instead of grocery-store paperbacks. Last week, News Corporation announced it would acquire Harlequin from its parent company, Torstar Corporation, for about four hundred and fifteen million dollars – not much more than Harlequin’s revenue last year. Harlequin will become a division of News Corps HarperCollins Publishers.”
Citerat ur ”What Happened to the Harlequin romance” av Adrienne Raphel i New Yorker, 8 maj 2014. En helt underbar artikel om fenomenet Harlequin, som nu alltså får allt tuffare konkurrens från självpublicerad erotica och pornografi. Det är särskilt roligt att läsa om storhetstiden och om alla oskrivna regler som styr en klassisk Harlequin-roman. Mycket underhållande.