What the Heck Happened to Ellora’s Cave?

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I was introduced to Ellora’s Cave erotica world when I was a teen reading the Romantic Times magazine. They always had the most interesting books advertised in their glossy pages. Fever Hot Dreams was one of my must-read books from Ellora’s Cave. I wrote a huge list (now lost) of all of the Ellora’s Cave books I wanted to read.

To this day, I have not read a single Ellora’s Cave book.

Years later, I discover the erotica publishing behemoth has gone bye-bye. What the heck happened to Ellora’s Cave?

Before we get to the meat of the issue, let’s jump back to Ellora’s Cave beginnings.

The Birth of Ellora’s Cave

Single mom and writer Tina Engler started Ellora’s Cave in the late 90s. Johana Lindsey’s The Prisoner of My Desire inspired Engler to write spicier novels. No more dainty romances with fancy genitalia names.

Engler tried the traditional route submitting her works to big-time publishers. They were having none of it. Engler’s style was too risqué for them.

Engler decided to sell her stories online and e-mail them to readers in PDF format. Take note: this was a time way before eBooks became a thing.

Ellora’s Cave grew, and more writers were added to the mix. This was great news for the company. Some writers were making thousands more with Ellora’s Cave than did with any traditional publishers. Ellora’s Cave sold about 200,000 books a month!

Everything was great, but the good times weren’t made to last forever.

Ellora’s Cave Crumbles

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Ellora’s Cave made much of its profits through Amazon. Suddenly, they were dropping as the major online distributor changed.

More books similar to Ellora Cave’s themes were sold on Amazon for lower prices and sometimes free for readers. Less of Ellora’s Cave books appeared under Amazon’s search engine.

Plus, Ellora’s Cave was under the suspicion of not paying their writers. Jane Litte, book blogger of Dear Author, posted the details. Engler didn’t like Litte’s post and filed a lawsuit against the blogger for false claims.

Ellora’s Cave stated their faulty accounting software was to blame for their non-paid authors.

There was tons of drama on this case. A lot of “she said this” business. My head was spinning reading the articles.

Eventually, Ellora’s Cave shut down in 2016. Tina Engler still writes as Jaid Black. The other authors who were part of Ellora’s Cave moved on to extend their writing careers with other publishers.

Ellora’s Cave Still Exists…Somewhat

While you won’t find the Ellora’s Cave website (a phone tracking company took the domain) or attend any RomantiCons, you can still find plenty of Ellora’s Cave books on Amazon.

Watch out for the ridiculously high priced books! Don’t waste your time buying those no matter how rare they are! You can find Jaid Black’s books on Amazon too, free if you have a Kindle Unlimited membership.

It sucks Ellora’s Cave went through all this drama and legal trouble. Ellora’s Cave may be gone, but never forgotten.

Ellora’s Cave Authors

I’m sure there’s there more out there, but here is a list of Ellora Cave authors. You might recognize a writer or two.

Did you have a favorite Ellora’s Cave book? What did you think about Ellora’s Cave fall?

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4 comments

  1. Linda says:

    Dear Alexandria the steamy reader,

    I use to purchase a lot of ebooks from Elloras Cave and one day it disappeared. Life got in the way and suddenly it’s 2020 and we are facing coronavirus pandemic. So being a shelter in place moment, I thought of what the heck happened to Elloras Cave? I found your article.So I have a question about what happen to some of the authors. A particular one, M A Everaux, wrote only 2 books but I considered excellent and then disappeared. Any insight on this? RT use to have a column of where are they now but they too are gone. Hope to hear from you.n Stay Safe out there.
    Linda

    • Alexandria says:

      Hello there, Linda!

      Unfortunately, I had no luck finding M.A. Everaux either. It sucks this author doesn’t have even their own website. 🙁

      I wonder if “M.A. Everaux” was a pseudonym for another name…

      I hope you find more about this author eventually! Did you have any other favorite authors from the Ellora’s Caves days? Anyone who is still writing to this day?

  2. Jenny says:

    Laurann Dohner
    Evangeline Anderson
    Aline hunter
    Suzanne Wright
    Lolita Lopez
    were Ellora’s cave authors, all are still writing today.

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