Please note: there is a submission form on the left-hand sidebar. Not all devices show this sidebar, you may need to scroll / search for it.

Thank you for your interest regarding submitting an indie, self-published or traditionally published mainstream historical novel to Discovering Diamonds for possible review. We aim to promote all quality historical fiction, regardless of sub-genre or how it is published, although we also wish to support indie authors because they do not have the backing of the big publishing houses to market their books. However, our standards are high! In addition to the level of writing and editing we assess traditional-quality production and presentation – which means correct formatting and can include cover design. 

We reserve the right to reject incorrectly formatted books, whether in hardcopy or e-version.

 ‘Indie’ is classified as the author pays a financial contribution toward any aspect of publication: e.g. printing cost, isbn purchase, editing,  cover design, etc., but we will not be including the publisher's details in our reviews in order to make no distinction to potential readers. As to whether a book is indie or mainstream: a good book is a good book regardless of how it is produced.

We do not review all books submitted to usEven if you are invited to submit a book this does not guarantee a review, it is our choice to  decide which books will receive a review. We do not give negative reviews. All our selections are 3+ - 5 star quality.

We only accept books written in the English language
We only review historical fiction (not non-fiction, personal memoirs or religious beliefs, or poetry).
To be classed as Historical Fiction the story must have 75% of the narrative set pre-1950 unless the book is fantasy with a strong historical connection, or alternative history.
We prefer e-book versions in mobi or e-pub format but will accept professionally produced PDF ARC versions, or hardcopy by arrangement. (Please contact  Helen  for details.)
Word.documents or poorly formatted PDF files will not be accepted.
Gift cards to purchase an e-book will not be accepted.
We only accept published material with an isbn/asin.
We do not offer critiques. 
All decisions are the responsibility of the blog’s founder, Helen Hollick and are final.
Rude, abusive or derogatory emails or comments will be deleted. Abuse will not obtain a re-review; it is unprofessional, ungracious and unacceptable.
  • You will be informed by email if your book is to have a review published, and we reserve the right to not accept or review books without explanation. 
  • All reviews remain the copyright of the individual reviewers, but may be used by authors/publishers providing the following is included: ©Reviewed by Discovering Diamonds
The Discovering Diamonds reviewers are all volunteers, therefore the process from receipt to possible review can take several months.

* * * * * * * * * * * * 

To request details of where and how to submit, fill in the submission form (on the sidebar) with the following information: 


If you do not receive a reply within 21 days please re-apply, as your request may have gone astray.

All books reviewed will receive one of the following logos
to use as the author/publishers wishes

For Highly Recommended Reads
For Recommended Reads

"We are not here as technical arbiters but as book reviewers who need simple common standards to judge how easy the 'book as a product' is to use."

All books have to be fully published and the version submitted has to be the published version, not a proof or intermediate edition. The only exception is PDF ARC versions from established publishing houses.

We require correctly formatted published files:  mobis (for Kindle) and ePubs (for everything else such as iBooks, Google Playbooks etc). We will not necessarily accept files that were created on free, downloadable software by the author/publishing house as these can often contain errors and give a false impression of the production quality of the book. Incorrectly formatted files create incorrectly formatted ebooks. Issues such as double line spaces between paragraphs, page numbers in the middle of a 'page' etc.,  blank pages can indicate incorrectly formatted files sent to be published. This is often down to using tabs to indent paragraphs as tabs do not play well with digital publishing formats. Such things tend to happen when trying to convert a Word.doc to a mobi using unsuitable free software.

What we look for:
  • Text should be justified, not left or right or centres but margin to margin, as you would expect for any professionally print book.
  • Indents should only be used for subparagraphs and dialogue except where the dialogue is at the beginning of a new text block (new chapter, after a break, line of asterisks etc).
  • Ebooks can have a full page for a new chapter: no need for a half page of text as is frequently seen in print books.
  • The cover should be part of the file, not as a separate attachment. Amazon requires the text and cover to be submitted separately and then put the two together for the final on-sale version. Our reviewers here at Discovering Diamonds, however, are not Amazon, so we want the book as the buyer gets it, please.
  • We expect to receive, read, and review the same format as any reader who may potentially purchase your novel.
  • The 'Look Inside' feature on Amazon for Kindle books can give a misleading indication of formatting, however, if the formatting does appear to be incorrect on this facility, but your book has been selected for review, we may add a caveat of 'This novel may appear incorrectly formatted as an e-book on some devices.' in order to be fair to readers/potential purchasers.
There is some controversy about formatting ebooks, because text can be altered by individual readers for their specific requirements, however, despite the myth that 'correct formatting is not suitable for ebooks' that is a myth! Correct formatting is no problem for the professional ebook formatter who will have ensured the text wraps and new paragraphs still have an indent. Paragraphs, correctly justified margins, indents, etc., should all be  retained, if correctly formatted, even though the text has flowed to accommodate the different page sizes. Hence, we insist on correct, professional level  formatting. However, we do appreciate that there are issues with this, so we reserve the right to use our judgement regarding the formatting of novels submitted to us.

For further technical information about producing an ebook please contact our technical adviser e-book editor, Nicky Galliers.

Thank you - I look forward to hearing from you.

  • Cover of Month announced on the FIRST Sunday of the month
  • Book of the Month announced on the SECOND Sunday in the month
  • Guest Spot - posted on the THIRD Sunday in the month
  • Reader's Voice - posted on the LAST Sunday in the month