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Harlequin romance imprint in Penguin-India kitty

Harlequin Enterprises Ltd, one of the world's leading publishers of books for women, has tied up with Penguin-India to promote its popular imprint MIRA in India, Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal.

books Updated: Jun 24, 2010 12:55 IST

Harlequin Enterprises Ltd, one of the world's leading publishers of books for women, has tied up with Penguin-India to promote its popular imprint MIRA in India, Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal.

The Canada-based Harlequin that owns the popular Mills & Boon series publishes over 110 titles a month in 28 languages in 114 international markets across six continents.

As part of the agreement sealed this month, Penguin will represent MIRA in the country.

MIRA publishes international best-selling authors like Nora Roberts, Debbie Macomber and award-winning Diane Chamberlain and Susan Wiggs.

"Over the last decade, Penguin-India has represented some of the best of international literature through strategic partnerships with Faber, Bloomsbury, Atlantic UK and Quercus to name a few. With this partnership, MIRA and Penguin realised a common goal to bring the best of MIRA's publishing to the Indian audience," Anand Padmanabhan, vice-president (sales), Penguin-Books India, told IANS.

"They have an exciting list with some breakaway best-sellers from writers like Nora Roberts, Tess Gerritsen, Elizabeth Flock, Pan Jenoff, P.C. Cast and Alex Kava, to name a few," he said.

Padmanabhan said Penguin-India saw a "strategic fit with the success of MIRA's list worldwide".

"The market in India has an ever-growing need for commercial mass market fiction like historical, fantasy, vampire and paranormal romances that are a huge hit worldwide. Indian readers love them too. Anyone looking for a great read, be it in summer or winter, at home or while travelling, is our potential customer," he said.

The imprint's USP is its impressive author's repertoire for young English readers in the age group of 20-45 years.

In the genre of crime, MIRA publishes bestselling thriller writers like Tess Gerritsen, Alex Kava, Paul Johnston and J.T Ellison while in fast-growing paranormal romance segment, the big names include P.C. Cast, Rachel Vincent and Jennifer Armintrout.

The fantasy fiction category includes Maria V. Snyder's Study series and Poison trilogy. A new Young Adult duet is coming later in the year, Penguin-India sources said.

The birth of the MIRA imprint at Harlequin has an interesting history.

In the early 1990s, several of Harlequin's top revenue generating authors began to leave the company to write "single-title" romances for other publishers.

In a bid to retain the talent, Harlequin in October 1994 launched the MIRA imprint to publish single-title romances.

Bulk of the early novels were penned by well-known Harlequin writers, including Heather Graham Pozzessere, whose novel "Slow Burn" was the imprint debut. MIRA published four novels a month for the first few years. Of these, one was an original novel while the other three were repackaged back-list by other Harlequin authors.

In the last 15 years, MIRA has built a niche for itself in crime fiction with authors such as Paul Johnston, M.J. Rose, Chris Jordan, P.D. Martin, Steven Hague and Jason Pinter.

Harlequin was founded in 1949 in Winnipeg in Canada as a paperback reprinting company.