Tess Gerritsen protests

I was intrigued by this post: Tess Gerritsen’s Blog » And the opposite of fan mail…. Tess Gerritsen is a bestselling crime-fiction novelist. I have read all of her current series of novels, but was not impressed by the most recent, which seemed to me mechanical.

Putting that to one side, in the post to which I link above, Tess is outraged to receive a letter from a reader who is upset to have picked up a book by Tess, only to find it a reissue of one of her earlier romance novels. I did not know Tess Gerritsen wrote romance novels, but I certainly identify with her reader’s frustration at buying a book and finding it to be very different from her expecations.

I have had a similar experience with Tami Hoag, whose publishers reissue her old books now that she has made the "big time" in such a way that it is rather hard to work out whether the book is new or not. Tess herself is furious with her reader, though, stating in her post that she takes no responsibility for the reissue of her earlier books. I was not convinced by her indignance. After all, she did write them, and no doubt was thrilled when they were published.

This is what she writes on her blog: "I am not, repeat NOT responsible for the re-release of my old romance novels.  And any reader who knows how the real world of publishing works should understand that. It still just flabbergasts me that readers can hate the romance novels so much that they will boycott an author for EVER IN HER LIFE having written the genre." So we have an indignant reader and an equally indignant author. What’s the way forward, though?