Publisher Harlequin launches new ebook reader app for iPhone and iPad, tying into its existing websi


Good news for fans of frowning, hard-bodied men with husky voices and a tendency to growl crossly at women before sweeping them off their feet. Romance publisher Mills & Boon has a new app.

Launched this week for iPhone and iPad by publisher Harlequin, it ties into the company’s existing eBookshelf service, through which readers can buy or subscribe to its ebooks.

Although it’s not compatible with ebooks bought from Amazon’s Kindle store, the app can read books produced in the ePub and PDF formats. Readers can bookmark pages, look up word definitions using Google, and share excerpts via Twitter, Facebook and email.

New users get nine books to start them off, from The Balfour Legacy and Her Vampire Husband through to Destitute Yet Defiant and Wicked Rake, Defiant Mistress. There’s plenty of defiance going on, it’s fair to say.

Harlequin worked with white-label ebooks firm Bluefire on the new app, which uses Adobe’s Content Server digital rights management (DRM) technology. Previously, Mills & Boon books have been available through Bluefire’s separate app.

It’s not the first dedicated app for the romance publisher, though. In November 2011, Harlequin’s Australian subsidiary launched an official iPhone app for Mills & Boon, while in March 2013 the company partnered with mobile firm biNu to add the novels to its reading app for emerging markets.

When that deal was announced, Harlequin already had 100% of its “frontlist” (new and currently available) books available in digital formats. Mills & Boon has also worked with Cosmopolitan magazine in the UK on a series of “Cosmo Red-Hot Reads” ebooks.

“We’ve tried over the years to put digital at the heart of everything we do,” its digital and marketing director Tim Cooper told the BBC in 2012. “Digital lends itself to the habitual nature of our content. Our readers finish reading one and they can download the next.”

Special thanks to The Guardian for this article


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