There is a submission form on the left-hand sidebar.
Not all devices show this sidebar, you may need to scroll / search for it - or please email Helen Hollick ( author AT helenhollick DOT net )

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 primarily 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 do not include the publisher's details in our reviews in order to make no  publicdistinction 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.

Please note: we prefer to receive e-versions – mobi or correctly formatted PDF
  • We accept indie or traditionally published books of Historical Fiction of any sub-genre: i.e historical romance, thriller, timeslip etc. (‘Historical’ means at least 75% must be set pre-1953)
  • All books submitted must be the final published version, not a pre-print proof copy. The exceptions are ARCs from established publishing houses. We do not accept word.doc copies.
  • Submissions that are  incorrectly formatted or published will be  automatically rejected.
  • Hardcopy (paperback or hardback) will be accepted by prior arrangement (please email me). You will be responsible for all purchase and postage costs, which are non-refundable, even if the book is not reviewed.
  • We do not accept gift cards or vouchers. We forward books to a review team member so cannot use vouchers – if you send one it will NOT be returned and your book may NOT be reviewed.
  • We expect to receive, read, and review the same format, style and presentation as any reader who may buy  your novel.
  •  Not all books submitted will be selected to be reviewed or have a review published on Discovering Diamonds.
  • If your book has been scheduled to have a review posted you will find your name and the scheduled date HERE: 
  • You will be contacted if your book has been selected for review, but please allow up to THREE months – we have a lot of books and a small, but dedicated, review team.
  • We reserve the right to not explain why a book has not been selected for review. (Sorry, we are not a critique service.) Unless by choice of individual reviewers, further correspondence will not be entered into. 
  • All e-files submitted to us will be deleted after being read. Beyond being sent to one of our review team they will not be forwarded, copied or used in any other way. Paperbacks etc will be donated to a charity/thrift shop or local library.
  • Books successfully reviewed will receive a brief comment on, and Goodreads – although it cannot be guaranteed that these platforms will publish a submitted comment.
  • You are welcome to use any quotes from your review as and how you wish – but please mention Discovering Diamonds.
  • You are also welcome to use the Discovering Diamonds logo  awarded to your novel where and how you wish
Thank you, we look forward to receiving your novel.

Helen Hollick
On behalf of the Discovering Diamonds Review Team

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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.


"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:
  • The 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.