Sneak Peak!

Hi Everyone!

Phew, there’s been a lot of blog tours lately. I that think perhaps I should apologise for that. I must admit that I applied to a lot of tours expecting to not get any of them…and naturally got accepted onto every single one. There are at least six more queued for the coming weeks but, don’t worry, I’m not going to volunteer for any more for a while. Once they’re out of the way I’ll be focusing on my scheduled reviews once again!

I’m also not going to be taking on any unsolicited reviews for a while. Sorry guys but I just have trouble saying no and this rate my ‘to read’ pile will never get any smaller. I’m not even going to read the emails you send me anymore as sometimes I get a few submissions a day. I’ll naturally let you know as soon as I’m in a place to take submissions again but, for the next few months, they’re definitely closed.

Anyhow, in between the blog tours and any reviews that Nick may want to post, here’s what you have to look forward to next. I hope you enjoy reading them:

Twisted! by Miranda Leek

Sinister by Colleen Fleshman

Vampirates: Blood Captain by Justin Somper

Scar by C.C. Faye

Questors by Joan Lennon

Sleeping in the Morgue by Jennifer Tressen

The Ask and the Answer by Patrick Ness

My Life as a Troll by Susan Bohnet

The Recruit and Class A by Robert Muchamore

/Shifted Episodes 1-4 by Madeline Freeman

Tersias by G.P. Taylor

The Space in Between by Jen Minkman

The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

On a serious note…

I’ve been meaning to post this for a little while now as I feel I need to reiterate a point from my FAQ. Over the last few weeks, I’ve been getting a bit of negative feedback from independent authors who have requested reviews from me. While I won’t name any names, the general theme of the emails is to make me feel bad for negative reviews that I have given them. In response to this, I would just like to point out the following:

1.  I am not paid to do this.  This site is my hobby but I have a full time job as well. This is why I had to shut submissions because I did not want to make people wait for a year for the review that they requested. I aim to review one to two novels a week and you can see on my Goodreads page how large my to read list is. Chasing me will not get you a review faster.

2.  I am not obliged to give 4-5 star reviews for every novel.  Some reviewers find it hard to give a poor review, especially when an author has been very nice and polite with them. I do not. My reviews are all honest and based around how I felt while reading the novel. I know I can be a harsh reviewer but I will still always tell you when I absolutely love a book.

3.  I hold no qualifications in internet reviewing.  I am not an expert, I’m just someone who has always loved reading. I do have a masters degree in English Literature and I like to think that helps but my opinions are still just my own.

4.  Every review is tarnished by personal taste.  While I do try to remain objective as possible, you may have noticed that I have some personal issues with certain literary tropes. These include cliffhanger endings, the use of deus ex machinas and female characters than always need to be rescued. As I understand that some people do actually like these things, I always say that it is not my taste within the review.

5.  You have put your work in the public eye – learn to accept critique.  Some authors are just bad at taking criticism and it does nothing more than reflect poorly on their professionalism. You and your mum may believe that your novel is perfect but there will be always someone that it does not speak to. If you get a bad review, learn from it and move on. Don’t argue with the reviewer – I won’t defend my opinions and I won’t remove the review from my site just because you only want people to post glowing praise of your book.

6.  My reviews are not a personal attack.  I merely present my opinions of a novel, I never use them to personally attack the author. I do not know any of you. You may be lovely people who have just written a flawed book or you may be utter monsters. This does not matter to me in the slightest. I’m here to look at the novel, not use it to psycho-analyse its author.

7.  If you’re not happy to receive constructive criticism, don’t ask me to review your novel.  At the end of the day, I get lots of submissions and most authors are very happy to receive criticism. If you’re looking for glowing praise, look elsewhere. I have no obligation to like your novel and I certainly will not praise something that I do not.

Welcome Nick!

Hello everyone! I just thought that I would take a moment to introduce you to my partner, Nick.

Nick already contributes massively to this site as he is Sobek’s principle photographer and is always quick to suggest novels that I should consider for review. To reward him for his hard work, I have also just granted Nick the power to post on this site and so I expect that you should be hearing more from him in the near future.

Nick’s reviews will be independent from my own. He won’t be wading his way through the review list that I’ve been building on Goodreads but will just be posting the occasional guest review now and then, particularly during times when I am busy or trying to read my way through a longer novel (and therefore could be unable to get a review up in a week).

I look forward to seeing what his first review would be and see what fresh perspective he brings to the site!

Requests are CLOSED

Hi everyone.

Just so you know, I’m going to have to close requests for a while. Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve been contacted by numerous self-published authors – sometimes two or three a day – who are all keen to have their novels reviewed on this site. While I’m very pleased that this blog has grown so popular, I’m just one person and make no money from this site and so can’t possibly get through more than one or two novels in any given week.

I currently have a backlog of over fifty novels waiting for review and anticipate that it will take me at least 5 months (possibly more) to get through them all. If you want to have your book reviewed on this site, please keep checking back. I’m planning to reopen submissions in a few months time when I’m in a better position to take on more reviews.

If you want a sneak peak of what’s to come, check out my Goodreads “to read” list as this currently contains my entire backlog in the order that I plan to review them.

To everyone who has provided me with review copies over the last few months – thank-you very much. I am thoroughly looking forward to reading and reviewing them all.

Coming Soon

Hi everyone! I really hope that you’re still enjoying my reviews.

This blog has been running for over five months and since my last update I’ve branched out onto LibraryThing and been included on the Indie Reviewers List. The next couple of months look to be even more exciting as I’m heading towards both my fiftieth review and the sixth month anniversary and in light of this I have a lot of exciting reviews lined up for you.

Please note that reviews over the next two weeks may be slightly delayed as I’m currently in the process of moving house but Sobek and I will be back on full form as soon as we’re settled in the new place.

Are you a writer of young adult fiction? I do take requests and can offer a review of approximately 1,000 – 1,500 words on this blog (as well as shorter reviews on Amazon, Goodreads and LibraryThing). The terms and conditions are as follows:

  • Your novel can be any genre of fiction but must be either targeted at young adults or be a middle grade novel that still holds appeal for teenage readers.
  • Your novel must be currently available to either purchase or preorder online in paperback or eBook form.
  • You must be patient. I review submissions in the order that they are requested and have a bit of a backlog so it could take me a few months to get to your request.
  • Be aware that I only give out honest reviews (based on my own personal opinion). I don’t give out reviews that gush praise where I don’t feel that its deserved. If you’re looking for someone to declare that you are the next Philip Pullman, you might want to look somewhere else.
  • If you could donate a copy of your book it would be greatly appreciated. Physical copies or mobi files are preferred but I will also accept pdf files.

If you’re happy with the above, please send your request to and I’ll be in touch as soon as I can.

Anyhow, shameless plug aside, here’s what you have to look forward to over the next couple of months:

Dunnard’s Pearl by Mike Williamson

New Moon by Stephanie Meyer

Tru Luup: Vintage Fashion Girl, Mystery Slayer by Ellie Lawrence

Stormbreaker by Anthony Horowitz

The End of You and Me by Wendi A Lee

Hunger by Michael Grant

Siege of Providence by Winter Trabex

The Fault in our Stars by John Green

Sunshine by Nikki Rae

Young Sherlock Holmes: Red Leech by Andrew Lane

Elixir by Ted Galdi

Infinity by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Aegis Rising by S.S. Sagran

Coming Soon on Arkham Reviews

Hello everyone – I hope you’re well!

Arkham Reviews has now been running for over four months and we’re still going strong. Over the last couple of weeks we’ve attracted our hundredth follower, taken part in a virtual book tour and had the opportunity to read a very varied selection of novels.

This is just a reminder that if you have any suggestions of novels for me to review in the future, you can send me an email at I’ll review any genre of novel so long as it’s written for young adults (or is a middle grade novel that will also appeal to a young adult audience). My only stipulation is that it’s currently available to either purchase or preorder online as a paperback, eBook or audio book. You can find out more information about submissions on the FAQ page.

Over the last month I’ve received a lot of emails from authors asking me if I’ll review their books. I have also discovered NetGalley and obtained a couple of advanced reader copies of forthcoming novels from the publishers listed on there. Because of this, the next couple of months worth of reviews are pretty set in stone as I intend to alternate between submissions and some of the traditionally published novels that I’ve been hording. Don’t let this put you off from requesting anything for the future – just bear in mind it will probably be a couple of months before I get to looking at it.

Anyhow, the forthcoming reviews that you can look forward to on the blog are as follows:

The Lady Astronomer by Katy O’Dowd

Lionboy: The Chase by Zizou Corder

Aether Warriors by Dean Ravenola

Butter by Erin Jade Lange

Vampire World by Rich Douglas

Rebel Heart by Moira Young

Dante’s Kiss by Susan Nadathur

Midnight for Charlie Bone by Jenny Nemmo

Elixir by Ted Galdi

The Saga of Darren Shan 1-3 by Darren Shan

Soulwoven by Jeff Seymour

Blood Red, Snow White by Marcus Sedgwick

The Curse of the Thrax by Mark Murphy

Happy One Month-iversary!

Hello everyone and apologies for the delay in this post.

I just wanted to say thank-you to everyone who has followed or otherwise supported this blog throughout its first month of life. I’ve really enjoyed being able to read and share my opinions about Young Adult fiction, especially as it have me a chance to look at some books that normally would not be my first choice to read.

I have been amassing a small collection of novels to use for future reviews, however I just thought I’d take a moment to remind you that I’m also open for recommendations. Is there any novel that you’d like for me to take a look at? Maybe you’ve even written a Young Adult novel and would like for me to review it.

The specifications as to what I’m looking for in a novel can be found on my FAQ but if you have any further questions you can always drop me an email at

As I said on Twitter the other day, my next review will be Gone by Michael Grant and (all things being well) I’m hoping that I’ll have this up by tomorrow evening. In case you were curious, after this I’m hoping to review the following novels. Please note that these are not set in stone – I’m open to changing my schedule if anyone offers me a good suggestion:

Young Sherlock Holmes: Death Cloud by Andrew Lane

The Bone Dragon by Alexia Casale

The Enemy by Charlie Higson

The Wind Singer by William Nicholson

The Hunger Games by Susanne Collins

After this, who knows? It depends what takes my fancy.

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