31 October 2020

An Unholy Harlequin Halloween

This is the twelfth Dusty Bookcase Harlequin Halloween post. You know the drill by now: I share an old, odd, unsettling cover from the romance publisher's early years, and we all move on.

Here, for example, is the very first Harlequin Halloween post:

That was it. 

Elizabeth Sanxay Holding's Speak of the Devil was my choice for this year. Still is. I mean, really, is there not something unnatural about that woman's index finger?

Published in June 1950, Speak of the Devil was the first Harlequin to feature "Devil" in its title. As far as I've been able to determine, the next was American Charles Stoddard's RCMP adventure Devil's Portage, which followed eight years later.

It isn't until 1975 that we find the third Harlequin to reference the Devil in its title:

The Devil's Darling
Violet Winspear

I don't pretend to know what's going on with Harlequin, but can't help but note that with The Devil's Darling the Evil One came to take a regular place in its titles.
Devil in a Silver Room
Violet Winspear

The Devil's Daughter
Marguerite Bell

The Devil's Bride
Margaret Pargeter

The Devil Drives
Jane Arbor

Devil's Gateway
Yvonne Whittal

The four decades since Devil's Gateway have seen:

Devil in Command - Helen Bianchin (1981)
Devil in Disguise - Jessica Steele (1981) 
Devil's Mount - Anne Mather (1981)
The Devil Lover - Carole Mortimer (1981)
The Devil's Mistress - Sarah Holland (1982)
A Touch of the Devil - Anne Weale (1982)
Devil's Causeway - Mary Winnerley (1982)
Sup with the Devil - Sara Craven (1982)
Devil's Gold - Nicola West (1983)
The Devil Within - Catherine George (1984)
The Devil's Price - Carole Mortimer (1985)
Devil's Advocate - Vanessa James (1985)
Devil's Gambit - Lisa Jackson (1986)
The Old Devil Moon - Anne Logan (1986)
The Devil's Own - Sandra Brown (1987)
Devil Moon - Margaret Way (1988)
Devil and the Deep Sea - Sara Craven (1989)
Devil's Shadow - Sally Wentworth (1989)
The Devil's Dare - Jean Reece (1989)
Devil in Paradise - Joanna Mansell (1991)
Devil to Pay - Renee Roszel (1992)
The Devil Has His Due - Diana Hamilton (1992)
Dance with the Devil - Pamela Litton (1992)
Valley of the Devil - Yvonne Whittel (1992)
Dance to the Devil's Tune - Lucy Keane (1994) 
The Devil's Lady - Deborah Simmons (1994)
Devil's Dare - Laurie Grant (1995)
Candle for the Devil - Susanne McCarthy (1995)
Saving the Devil - Sophie Weston (1995)
The Devil Earl - Deborah Simmons (1996)
The Devil's Kiss - Scott DeLoras (1996)
Lucky Devil - Patricia Rosemoor (1996)
Handsome Devil - Joan Hohl (1999)
Defense for the Devil - Kate Wilhem (1999)
The Devil's Due- Rachel Cain (2000)
The Devil's Mark - Joanna Makepiece (2000)
The Devil to Pay - Stephanie James (2000)
The Devil You Know - Laurie Page (2001)
The Devil to Pay - Michele Hauf (2002)
The Devil's Bargain - Robyn Donald (2002)
Date with a Devil (2003)
The Angel of Devil's Camp - Lynne Banning (2003)
Devil's Cub - Georgette Heyer (2003)
The Devil You Know - Laurie Page (2004)
The Devil's Hearth - Philip De Poy (2004)
The Devil's Bargain - Rachel Cain (2005)
The Devil's Waltz - Anne Stuart (2006)
The Devil's Footprints - Amanda Stevens (2006)
In Bed with the Devil - Susan Mallery (2007)
The Devil to Pay - Michele Hauf (2008)
The Devil and Drusilla - Paula Marshall (2008)
Devil in a Dark Blue Suit - Robyn Grady (2009)
The Sexy Devil - Kate Hoffman (2010)
Devil in Dress Blues - Karen Foley (2011)
The Devil Wears Kolovsky - Carol Marinelli (2011) 
The Devil's Chord - Alex Archer (2011)
The Devil's Heart - Lynn Rae Harris (2011)
Lady with the Devil's Scar - Sophia James (2012)
The Devil and the Deep - Amy Andrews (2012)
The Devil and Miss Jones - Kate Walker (2012)
The Devil She Knows - Kira Sinclair (2013)
Daughters Unto Devils - Amy Lukavics (2015)
The Devil Takes a Bride - Julia London (2017)
The Devil's Bargain - Kira Sinclair (2020)
Dirty Devil - L.J. Shen (2020)

That I hesitate in sharing this discovery may have something to do with having been traumatized by Race with the Devil as a child.

It didn't end well.

Not to suggest that that a similar fate awaits, but to be safe I've written and scheduled my annual Christmas post.

Happy Halloween, I guess.

Merry Christmas, too.

Related posts:


  1. Not that any of them include the actual DEVIL, of course. That would be going far too far.

    1. I dare not investigate, Karyn (though Sup with the Devil does sound interesting).