What do you think of book reissues?
No, that is not a rhetorical question. I'm a reader, too,
and I know what it's like to bring a new book home from the
bookstore only to realize I've read it before under a different
cover or title. That is not to say that I don't want reissues,
especially when I discover new-to-me authors and I go searching
for their backlists. I am careful to check the copyright pages,
though, if it is not indicated on the cover that it is a reissue.
Here's my personal situation. I have a historical romance
coming out any day now, THE VIKING TAKES A KNIGHT. Its
prequel, VIKING IN LOVE
, which came out early this year, is still available new. THE VIKING TAKES A KNIGHT
is an historical romance, featuring John of Hawk's Lair and the Norse Princess Ingrith. As a knight in the king's service, all John wants is a little peace and quiet for his beekeeping experiments, not an irksome Viking princess with a horde of orphans who overtake his keep. Boy, is he in for a rude awakening...Sandra Hill Viking style.
But here's the rub. Harper Collins (Avon) has bought my
backlist from Dorchester Publishing...a whopping seventeen
titles, and they are reissuing them bigtime. This is a good
thing. Honest. Let me explain. Starting in January, every month through August, they will be reissuing eight of these books, both in print and ebook formats, all with new covers, one with a new title. Seven of these reissues are prequels to VIKING IN LOVE and THE VIKING TAKES A KNIGHT.
--THE VIKING'S CAPTIVE (formerly MY FAIR VIKING), January.
--THE BEWITCHED VIKING, February.
--THE BLUE VIKING, March.
--A TALE OF TWO VIKINGS, April
--THE RELUCTANT VIKING, May.
--THE OUTLAW VIKING, June.
--THE TARNISHED LADY, July.
--THE LAST VIKING, August.
It's a good thing because I am going to make this as good a
thing as possible for my readers in various ways and for various
1) Some have been out of print for a long time, and some have
never been put into ebooks.
2) There will be a note on each cover indicating it is a
reissue. Very small, I admit, but it's there.
3) I am editing each of those books, not just for typos or
errors, but to update them. For example, they will now have the
funny scene tags that are the trademarks of my later books.
Reader letters will also be updated.
4) I am unkilling two favorite characters. When I wrote MY FAIR VIKING, I killed off Rain and Selik, the hero and heroine of THE OUTLAW VIKING, figuring they would be elderly by this time. Fans hated this. So, in the new version, Rain and Selik are unkilled. Hey, this is artistic license at its best. There will also be some other "tweaks" in this book to take care of an error in a later book. (Okay, I admit it. A minor character died in TOL who is somehow alive in a later book. My bad!)
So, what do you think? Are you willing to accept reissues
under these circumstances?
For more info on these and my other books, free novellas,
And as always, I wish you smiles in your reading.
Sandra Hill, NYT and USA Today bestselling author of more than 30 romantic comedy novels. Whether they be historical, contemporary or time-travel, Viking, Cajun, or Navy SEAL, the common element is always humor and sizzle.