Librarian box is primarily a monthly Young Adult book box that focuses on handmade and locally sourced items. They are also the only box that I know of that will due custom order boxes for any book or fandom you want. I didn’t intend to order so many copies of Empire of the Vampire by Jay Kristoff but when I saw all the different book boxes doing it I got sucked in and wanted to see what items would be included in different boxes.
Librarian box normally does the book and 3-4 items with this box there was a standard box and a deluxe that came with more items and I couldn’t resist the idea of more items that I might love. The bookish items included were a leather journal, a bath boom, a wooden bookmark, holographic sticker with an EOTV quote, a pint glass, a book sleeve, a necklace, a small bar of soap, a art print, and a bag of chips. I personally don’t understand the bag of chips but overall the items are useable and good quality. However, I think that for me I would have preferred fewer items that were larger and nicer.
This copy of Empire of the Vampire by Jay Kristoff is a standard first edition US hardcover which means that it is signed. It also came with a exclusive dust jacket with artwork by Salome Totladze and a letter from the author.
Illumicrate is a UK based fantasy and science fiction book box that has monthly boxes or just a monthly book only subscription. Each box also includes a selection of bookish goodies some more practical, others more decorative set around a monthly theme. September’s theme is To the Bitter End.
The items included in this box are a Percy Jackson sword replica, a Throne of Glass pouch, a Strange the Dreamer inspired shoe charms, a set of magnets with characters from An Ember in the Ashes, and a These Violent Delights inspired pin set. Though I like most of these items I’m surprised with the fandoms and books represented in the items are all Young Adult titles when the book for this month is very adult and shouldn’t be placed in a Young Adult section.
Illumicrate, like other book boxes, include a new hard cover each month and has a letter from the author. This months book is Empire of the Vampire by Jay Kristoff and this edition is my favorite off all the editions I’ve seen. It has amazing digitally printed edges, an exclusive cover, and foiling on the hardback. I’m not even going to try to summarize this book as I feel like any fan already knows and you’ve probably heard about the book even if your not a Jay Kristoff fan. I will give one warring if you know nothing about this book its very adult and you might want to take a look a Jay Kristoff’s gif review on Goodreads as that can give you an idea if this is in any way a book you might like.
Fairyloot is a Young Adult book subscription box focusing on fantasy based out of the UK. Each month you receive a new Young Adult hardback book and 5-6 bookish goodies. Like most book boxes the hardback are special editions and the items are a combination of both practical things and more decorative items. September’s theme is Uprising.
The bookish items included this month are the tray that was delayed from last month, a card holder, a pair of Six Crimson Cranes inspired socks, An Ember in the Ashes enamel pin, a Daughter of Smoke and Bone tapestry, and the monthly tarot card with character art from the Caraval series.
All Fairyloot books come with exclusive covers, signed by the author and include a letter from the author. However, this month is special as a new paperback was also included. The paperback is Beast of Prey by Ayana Gray which is a pan-African inspired fantasy. This month hardback also has sprayed purple edges, artwork on the reverse of the dust jacket, and foiling on the hardback. The book is Defy the Night by Brigid Kemmerer which is a fantasy that focuses on the balance of power, magic, and a corrupt kingdom.
In September I read four books which was a bit of a struggle as I’ve not been in much of a reading mood and have had trouble getting into different stories. However, I’ve been playing more video games and watching different shows lately.
After the Romanovs: Russian Exiles in Paris from the Belle Époque through Revolution and War by Helen Rappaport is a historical nonfiction book about the lives of the Russian Exiles in Paris primarily aristocrats, artist, and intellectual who escaped Russia during and in the aftermath of the Revolution. This book includes interesting information that focuses mainly on specific individuals with some information related to the exiles as a whole. As Russian history is not my main focus of study, though I do find it interesting, I had some trouble with names and who different people were but those with a better understanding of Russian history and culture shouldn’t have this problem. For me I prefer accounts about the Romanovs themselves. I received an advanced review copy through Netgalley.
The Final Girl Support Group by Grady Hendrix is a horror novel that follows a group of women who survived the monsters that came after them. However, someone knows about this group and is now threating to destroy the little peace they have gained. The story is told through Lynnette who has decided the best way to survive is to be very paranoid and have multiple escape plans in place which is understandable but I found her and most of the characters as unlikable. I love the concept of this story, the beginning, and the hidden references to real world slasher movies but I think I would have enjoyed this story much more as a movie or TV show. I received an early review copy through Netgalley.
Fazbear Frights #7: The Cliffs by Scott Cawthon is another collection of stories set in the Five Nights at Freddy’s world. This set of stories I found fairly boring overall though there is some very creepy body horror. Though no story in this series is very serious they are starting to get to the point that the ridiculous scenario are impacting my enjoyment. I feel that those who love horror and the series overall will still like this collection but others in the series have been better.
Lost Voices from the Titanic: The Definitive Oral History by Nick Barratt is a historical nonfiction book about the sinking of the Titanic. Combining archive material, eye witness account, and the inquiries into the sinking the author tries to get an accurate picture of the sinking. Unlike other books this one looks at the historical context of the world the sinking happened in and some information on the aftermath and consequences. Very well written but does cover information that I already knew and most works now cover.
I have been watching more shows this month but due to several stressful situations I’ve mostly been watching documentaries as I feel like I don’t have to pay as much attention to these compared to shows is overarching plots. These documentaries include LuLaRich and The Vow: A NXIVM Story. However, I did watch the live action Dumbo movie which I found very cute and lighthearted.
I have also been working my way through the original Final Fantasy VII and I’m about half way done. I do plan to have a full review for this game once I have finished it.
Owl Crate is a young adult book subscription box where every month you receive one new hardcover book and an assortment of bookish goodies connected to the monthly theme. Some of these items are very practical and some are better suited as décor or for a pin/bulletin board. September’s theme is Haunted Hearts.
Each box includes different bookish goodies that fit the theme of the month and are connected to other books. This months items include a ceramic travel mug, a pair of magnetic picture frames, an amazing calligraphy kit, a coaster set, and a wooden page holder.
Every month Owl Crate has a new young adult hardback book that has an exclusive cover, is signed and comes with a letter from the author. The enamel pin that is in every box is also inspired by that months book. This months book is Lakesedge by Lyndall Clipstone. This edition also has exclusive end pages and a bonus chapter. When Violeta arrives at the Lakesedge estate she expects to find a monster in Rowen the owner of the estate who is rumored to have killed his entire family. However, there are monsters in the woods including a Death god who Leta might have a connection to. To save herself and Rowen she will have to confront her past and figure out this connection. This story sounds prefect for me as I love gothic stories with some romance.