Subscription Boxes

Moon Hauls: The Stranger The Better Tales by Mail

Subscription box: Tales by Mail

Theme/Month: The Stranger the Better, for August 2021

Ownership: Subscribed on their 6 boxes option. If you are interested in purchasing a Tales by Mail subscription, you can do it on their website.

Tales by Mail is a bi-monthly middle-grade book box that comes with two books, some activity pages you can collect, or copy or use in various ways, a pin and one or two items.

With a very interesting theme, let’s see what was in the box, starting on the top left corner and going clockwise:

  • A Raven Heir promotional bookmark.
  • Crowfall by Vashti Hardy, which looks very intriguing to me.
  • The activity pages for the month which go into the collectible ring binder.
  • The most adorable keyring, which is the mascot for the box and I was so taken by it.
  • The Tentacle Boy which wasn’t in my radar but looks intriguing and creepy weird.
  • Promotional bookmark for The Tentacle Boy and Pizazz
  • The collectible pin

It was a very cute choice and maybe not my favourite box of the year but my absolute favourite was that keyring which I thought was super sweet and honestly, it won my heart.

Subscription Boxes

Moon Hauls: Just Imagine Book Box Club

Subscription box: Book Box Club

Theme/Month: Just Imagine, June 2021

Ownership: Subscribed on their 12 boxes option. If you are interested in purchasing a Book Box Club subscription, you can do it on their website.

Book Box Club is a young adult subscription box, the unique thing is the Clubhouse where you can chat to the author a month (or so) after the box was shipped and ask questions and just chat around. It also includes several goodies and usually the choice of book is one that is unique and not in other book boxes so very few chances of duplicate books and a lot of new reads discovery power.

June’s box was all about the power of imagination and therefore full of fandoms that had to do with imaginary worlds or similar things, so let’s see what was inside starting with the theme card and going clockwise:

  • Just Imagine theme card, there was also a clubhouse invite.
  • Joe Cool Alice in Wonderland socks, which makes me happy because they are so comfy and nice. Love it when I get socks
  • Somewhere Over the Rainbow bookmark which is adorable.
  • A quote print about imagination and reality, a bit too pink for my taste but still cute.
  • Coraline keychain
  • The main book, Strange Creatures which was definitely not what I imagined, see what I did there?.
  • And finally, a tin of hard boiled sweets, very old style, with a Charlie and the Chocolate Factory motif.

Overall very dreamy, very much appealing to memories and imagination, cute. The book was an interesting surprise and very much for me not my book as it was a bit too intense and just not my kind but I could see why it was chosen and it had an interesting concept.

Subscription Boxes

Moon Hauls: Out of the Woods Illumicrate

Subscription box: Illumicrate

Theme/Month: Out of the Woods, June 2021

Ownership: Subscribed on their 6 boxes option. If you are interested in purchasing an Illumicrate subscription, you can do it on their website.

Illumicrate is a book subscription box, it usually features fantasy and sci-fi but not exclusively young adult, sometimes it features adult too. It usually contains a new release, a pin and several bookish goodies.

Despite last month’s box being my most anticipated read and a great box, I think this is one of my favourite boxes of the year from them, so let’s see why I think so, starting from the leaflet in the middle of the lower row:

  • Out of the Woodes leaflet with the photo challenge and contents detailed.
  • A wordmark with a quote about it, but I love the sleepy fox and yes I won’t use it as a bookmark but the design wins me over.
  • The main book which was stunning, The Wolf and the Woodsman by Ava Reid.
  • A creepy kinda print which goes well with some others and I just like the artwork.
  • The Lord of the Rings puzzle in a “book” case, my puzzle-loving heart is extra happy since it is from LOTR.
  • A beautiful and delicate glass bottle with birch trees and a quote woven around, the design of it looks amazing when you fill the bottle.
  • The monthly pin, which as per usual is a nice pin.
  • A woodpin for We Hunt the Flame
  • Probably my least favourite item, a print that hangs in a fancy hanging way for Holly Black, I think?

Overall, the theme and items completely matched and the vibe was spot on with it, the designs were delicate and forest and had a tinge of the creepy and the beautiful. I felt like the whole box was a good one and I am very happy.

Subscription Boxes

Moon Hauls: WhoDunnIt? Book Box Club

Subscription box: Book Box Club

Theme/Month: WHODUNNIT, May 2021

Ownership: Subscribed on their 12 boxes option. If you are interested in purchasing a Book Box Club subscription, you can do it on their website.

Book Box Club is a young adult subscription box, the unique thing is the Clubhouse where you can chat to the author a month (or so) after the box was shipped and ask questions and just chat around. It also includes several goodies and usually the choice of book is one that is unique and not in other book boxes so very few chances of duplicate books and a lot of new reads discovery power.

This box was all about solving the mystery and our favourite cases or detectives, so let’s see what was inside, starting from the bottom right corner and going clockwise:

  • Clubhouse invite, still personalised.
  • A Moustache you a question? bath bomb which I thought was in part kudos to detectives and also it is a fun word game.
  • A set of Detective Notes
  • Marion Lane and the Midnight Murder, an interesting little murder mystery book.
  • Professor Plum candle, which is absolutely glorious
  • Theme card
  • A “labyrinth” type of pen with a quote which I always forget which it is but it is a fun pen.
  • An a little enamel pin

Overall I totally felt all the points to detectives and solving the mystery, plus the adding a Professor Plum and clue reference was cute and the colours fo the items kinda kept in theme of an old era vibe, really nice box.

Subscription Boxes

Moon Hauls: The City is Ours Illumicrate

Subscription box: Illumicrate

Theme/Month: The City is Ours, February 2021

Ownership: Subscribed on their 6 boxes option. If you are interested in purchasing an Illumicrate subscription, you can do it on their website.

Illumicrate is a book subscription box, it usually features fantasy and sci-fi but not exclusively young adult, sometimes it features adult too. It usually contains a new release, a pin and several bookish goodies.

February had an interesting theme that reminds me of several books so I was intrigued by it. Lets see what was inside starting top left:

  • A triket dish for Gilded Wolves which I think is absolutely stunning!
  • A hard shell card holder, which honestly I didn’t like the design on it so it immediately went into the “not keeping” pile. I think if it had had a different desing I might have kept it but I generally use softer card holoders.
  • A Crescent City umbrella, I still have their Laini Taylor umbrella so I can say they are good ones but this one is red and a fandom I don’t follow so I passed it on to someone who likes it.
  • A gorgeous postcard from The Last Falconer for Edinburgh.
  • The monthly pin, which was stunning!
  • Another great item, a gorgeous skull wooden coaster which is being proudly displayed in my office because it has my vibes.
  • And finally the book, with pink sprayed edges, A Dark and Hollow Star.

Overall it had some strong items and some not so strong ones, I think the biggest issue is we keep having items from the top 5-10 main fandoms, and not as many from others so I end up not being that into the SJM things etc,, as useful as they may be. I probably would have kept the umbrella if it fit a little better with the colours I like and I didn’t have the other one still, they are good umbrellas.

Subscription Boxes

Moon Hauls: From Olympus With Love Owlcrate

Subscription box: Owlcrate

Theme/Month: From Olympus With Love, January 2021

Ownership: Last box of my subscription. If you are interested in purchasing an Owlcrate subscription, you can do it on their website.

Owlcrate was my first ever subscription box way back in 2015, and usually features young adult books in a variety of genres alongside a few bookish items. Sadly due to import fees and shipping, I have had to cancel my subscription and won’t be getting any further boxes.

However, I am happy to have had this as my last box, and I’ll start with the bottom right going clockwise:

  • A letterboard, which obviously I decided to use by setting the theme there. I did feel a bit sad that the frame had no decorations or anything, felt like a missed opportunity.
  • It also came with a cute pouch to hold all the letters and symbols of the letterboard.
  • A tapestry that is a lunar calendar featuring Artemis and Athena.
  • A pin banner, I like that they are usually decorated and thick fabric so they just dont tear.
  • A wooden bookmark, which looks like somoenes been biting it, and has two different sides.
  • Nectar of the Gods tea, which is peppermint tea and sadly nothng more interesting.
  • Theme card
  • And the book, Lore. I’ve heard mixed reviews on it so I am curious, however not high expectations since I am not huge on greek mythology based books.

Overall I enjoy this box, it had some confusing items like the bookmark but I enjoyed a lot the letterboard since I have been wanting one for a while, just sad it didnt have a design on the eadge, but still a good item and the lunar tapestry/calendar is also cool.

As mentioned above, it was a nice last box and the only reason to cancel was mostly that shipping charges went up a lot due to political climate and being in the UK and all that, so not their fault.

Subscription Boxes

Moon Hauls: Historical Heroes Tales by Mail

Subscription box: Tales by Mail

Theme/Month: Historical Heroes for February 2021

Ownership: Subscribed on their 6 boxes option. If you are interested in purchasing a Tales by Mail subscription, you can do it on their website.

Tales by Mail is a bi-monthly middle grade book box that comes with two books, some activity pages you can collect, or copy or use in various ways, a pin and one or two items.

This is the first box of the year and it had some fun surprises in it! Starting from the top left and going clockwise:

  • Amari and the Night Brothers bookmark.
  • Darwins Dragons which I’ve been looking forward to since last year.
  • The month’s activity pages with space for reviews and some fun challenges.
  • The Queen’s Fool, which sounds intriguing.
  • A print with a quote and a signed bookplate for The Last Bear
  • The collectible pin.
  • A weekly planning notepad which I think is adorable.
  • A bookmark for The Queen’s Fool.

I was so excited to see a book I had wanted in the box and overall thought it had two very interesting reads alongside the bonus of that planning notepad which made me smile. It makes me happy to get the box and feel like I have great reads coming.

Subscription Boxes

Moon Hauls: At the Masquerade Book Box Club

Subscription box: Book Box Club

Theme/Month: At the Masquerade, January 2021

Ownership: Subscribed on their 12 boxes option. If you are interested in purchasing a Book Box Club subscription, you can do it on their website.

Book Box Club is a young adult subscription box, the unique thing is the Clubhouse where you can chat to the author a month (or so) after the box was shipped and ask questions and just chat around. It also includes several goodies and usually the choice of book is one that is unique and not in other book boxes so very little chances of duplicate books and a lot of new reads discovery power.

Ok, were finally catching up with this years boxes, and this was a good one, so let’s see what was inside, starting at the top left and going clockwise:

  • Theme card, I like that it shows the name of the theme and the month it is from so it helps my brain remember which month it was.
  • Mask of Mirrors, which sounds amazing and I am looking forward to reading it with some buddies!
  • Some advert for the Penguin Book Club.
  • Sumptuous Supplies list, which is becoming a shopping list soon once I finish up the last few pages of my current one. Love getting this perfect shopping list pads.
  • A mini tote/lunch bag which is super cute and a wonderful size.
  • Slightly hidden under the book is a nucao, which is vegan chocolate bar. It was slightly more bitter than I expected it to be, so it wasn’t bad but wasn’t amazing either.
  • A metal bookmark inspired by Nevernight.
  • Extra surprise cute face mask. I am glad the boxes are sending fabric masks that are cute and fun to wear.
  • And finally a candle which is all gold and glittery and wonderful .

Overall, I enjoyed the contents a lot, they felt sumptuous and like you were going to a masquerade. A face mask is an interesting spin to a masquerade attendance but why not? Quite good and February is meant to be awesome, so looking forward to it!

Subscription Boxes

Moon Hauls: Rebellious Royals Illumicrate

Subscription box: Illumicrate

Theme/Month: Rebellious Royals, January 2021

Ownership: Subscribed on their 6 boxes option. If you are interested in purchasing an Illumicrate subscription, you can do it on their website.

Illumicrate is a book subscription box, it usually features fantasy and sci-fi but not exclusively young adult, sometimes it features adult too. It usually contains a new release, a pin and several bookish goodies.

January’s theme starts the year with a bang and a great featured read for sure, but lets consider each item in the box, starting with the main featured book and going clockwise:

  • Winter’s Orbit which is super exciting read and I am thrilled about this!
  • You should see me in a crown Fuzzy socks, who doesn’t love soft fuzzy socks?
  • Theme card/leaflet.
  • Monthly pin
  • A collection of very pretty artwork of Sarah J. Maas bookmarks. If I was into the fandom, I’d be so into them but alas I ended up gifting them to a friend who actually likes the fandom.
  • A bag of mint tea, which I haven’t tried yet but I think is just pure peppermint tea.
  • A super awesome puzzle in a box for Folk of the Air Series that looks like a book and I utterly love it!
  • This last one was a shadow box, which I have to say I have opinions on. First, I like that it is kinda building your own but it took ages and a lot of effort as the wood was “cheap” and not done so well the actual shadows are awesome, it was just the interlocking parts that wouldn’t fit well and took a lot of pushing and prodding and wondering if it would break before it was built… Also not sure I would put a tealight inside if I put the lid on top as I was worried it’d smoke or you know just leave a heat mark that would wear it down. Maybe it’s just the size of this particular one, but I was not fully convinced by the item as a whole. As I said, the actual “shadows” are awesome, it is how the shadows happen and how to build it I struggled. However, huge kudos for adding a different kind of item, I loved the concept of it for sure!

As per my opinion above, I like it included new items, that puzzle box is stunning, and fuzzy socks are great too alongside the shadow box, but some of the execution could be better, however I can’t wait to see what new ideas come through and what comes in February’s box.

Subscription Boxes

Moon Hauls: Love is a Battlefield Owlcrate

Subscription box: Owlcrate

Theme/Month: Love is a Battlefield, December 2020

Ownership: Subscribed on their 6 boxes option. If you are interested in purchasing an Owlcrate subscription, you can do it on their website.

Owlcrate was my first ever subscription box way back in 2015, and usually features young adult books in a variety of genres alongside a few bookish items. Sadly due to import fees and shipping, I have had to cancel my subscription and won’t be receiving it starting with February’s box.

But since we still have this box and another, let’s make the most out of it and explore the contents of Love is a Battlefield which is an intense title to go for, did the contents match it? Starting at the top left and going clockwise:

  • These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong, which seems to be a popular book to be in book boxes and I should read it at some point soon.
  • Owlcrate theme card.
  • Legwarmers, I think I squealed a little when I realised what they were as legwarmers help with pain management in winter keeping my legs happier than if I didn’t wear them.
  • You can’t really see well but it is a puzzle based on Ember in the Ashes series. I’ve enjoyed their puzzles before, especially now that they come in cute boxes rather than pouches and prints you easily loose.
  • This one is hard to see but it is a “winter” themed mini rolling pin for decorating pastries. My success rate with this kind of rolling pin has been negative so as much as I think this is really cute, I am not keeping this item and passing it on to someone with more patience and baking pretty success.
  • A wooden Christmas ornament, which due to the box arriving after Christmas didn’t actually make it into the tree, but hopefully this year it will.
  • The monthly collectible pin.
  • And finally a wintery peppermint hand cream, which is nice to get hand cream in winter months and this is pretty mild in scent in a good way as in you can smell peppermint but it is not overbearing.

Overall it was a very wintery box but I have to say it didn’t feel like a box that fit the theme, I did not get “wow, loving is hard, or a battlefield or a minefield or anything like that” basically I didn’t even get much of the love vibe except for the puzzle, which is confusing because as a whole I liked the box but as a theme, it kinda doesn’t do it well.