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.

Book Review

Moon Reads: The Magpie Society: One For Sorrow

The Magpie Society: One For Sorrow by Zoe Sugg and Amy McCulloch

Rating: MoonKestrel Logo2 20px MoonKestrel Logo2 20px MoonKestrel Logo2 20px MoonKestrel Logo2 20px Grey

Read before: No

Ownership: I had ordered a signed copy from Waterstones, plus a copy came in Book Box Club Secret Societies

Spoiler free review: Yes

Series: The Magpie Society, Book 1.

Content warnings: Some adult grooming and relationship between adult and underage girl implied.

Obviously this one caught my interest a lot initially because I wanted to read it and got two copies. However I have to say the lower rating is partly because I really struggled to get on with the main characters up until probably the very end.

The mystery, the murder, I was loving that and the whole Illumen Hall atmosphere alongside the rules and you know, the feeling of it being a boarding school and how the students interact and have ways around rules but also how they follow certain rules to a specific point, it was fasicnating and that part I loved, alongside the interview/podcast we get in some chapters which added to the mystery and also moved the story along with new insights.

But as much as I could understand a bit where Ivy was coming from, she had been working super hard to achieve a single person room, and to achieve so many things, and then Lola’s death crumbled some of those plans, and obviously, she’s also grieving. Like a lot has happened to her and is out of her control and also, Audrey doesn’t make it easy to fit in, but rather easy to not get along too much. However, despite understanding her, I wasn’t initially too much into her character and struggled to connect, the writing just wasn’t doing it for me. I did get there once we get more into the action and less just for the sake of, and I have to say, what happens at the boat was pretty fun and helped me like the characters more.

And we have Audrey, who was too American, too meh and just a bit self centered and trying too hard to keep her mystery to herself. Once again, I kept reading the chapters of her and just could not be interested in her except to go “oh you poor dear who is trying so hard to not fit and be trendy and fit at the same time”. Maybe I could not relate because I have never been the popular girl demoted from popularity and seeking it again, but given that I was struggling to get along with both of them, I assumed it was more to do with how the story was being presented rather than specifically the characters.

It does get a lot better as the story goes, but I was sad that barely anything happens in the book, and I think partly it was those starting chapters that could have made it much bette rif they had been trimmed down and maybe had less of them. But overall, I want to know more, want to see who the Magpie Society are and how you join them, and we still don’t know who killed Lola or why or anything.

As I said, overall, it was a good boarding school read but could have been a lot better.

Book Review, Books

Roots of Corruption Review

Roots of Corruption by Laura Laakso

Rating: MoonKestrel Logo2 20px MoonKestrel Logo2 20px MoonKestrel Logo2 20px MoonKestrel Logo2 20px MoonKestrel Logo2 20px

I am a big fan of The Wilde Investigations series. You can find my review for Fallible Justice here and for the second book, Echo Murder, here. The general thing I like is how big the magical world is and how it mingles with the non magical world in the books. Another great thing si the amount of representation here of so many things (class divide, EDS, chronic illness, familiar pressures, duties, LGBTQ+, etc.) There’s a lot to explore and a lot to learn in each of the books.

Now specifically for Roots of Corruption, it is focused on Lady Bergamot (who despite the fact that it centers around her, is actually off page for a big part of the book) and it is a window into a little bit more about who she is, and the mystery of her garden.

When Lady Bergamot is attacked in her own garden, Wishearth reaches out to Yannia for help. What they find is not exactly what they expected, and Yannia starts having to do some quick decisions and trusting Wishearth a LOT. (And breaking some rules).

What seemed likean attack to Lady Bergamot becomes a race to try to find a serial killer with a purpose. Each kill brings the killer closer to something and they all seem to point at Lady Bergamot, but is she innocent or playing Yannia for a fiddle?

Karrion, Wishhearth and even Dearon make an appearance in the book, and we get to learn a little more about the politics of Old London, a little about the Fae Court, Selkies and Lady Bergamot. But Yannia is also trying to find who to trust and how far she does. It is hard to investigate objectively when it is a friend that has been ttacked and who may be the one behidn the crimes!

Of course, I had theories and theories about who it was and what was going on, and I still didn’t figure it out completely, but I enjoyed the whole story and it went by too fast. Partly because the way Laura writes is so immersive that you are instantly there in Yannia’s world and that’s it, you go along as part of the team, as if you were just strolling with them and riding in the car, beign a part of it. It isn’t just happening to them, you’re in it too.

Higly recommend this botanically focused book with murder, mystery and a heckload of magic!

Book Review, Books

What She Found in the Woods Review

What She Found in the Woods by Josephine Angelini

Running from a scandal at her New York private school, Magdalena heads to her family home to recover under the radar.

Over-medicated and under-confident, she’s fearful she’ll never escape her past.

Until she meets Bo out hiking. Wild, gorgeous and free, he makes her believe she might finally be able to move on.

But when a mutilated body is discovered in the woods, Magdalena realises she can’t trust anyone.

Not even herself.

Rating: MoonKestrel Logo2 20px MoonKestrel Logo2 20px MoonKestrel Logo2 20px MoonKestrel Logo2 20px MoonKestrel Logo2 20px Grey

I enjoyed Josephine’s Worldwalker series a lot, and therefore this seemed like a no brainer on getitng it. And I wasn’t wrong.

Lena is just trying to move through life, and stop things going a bit awry. Just a clean slate, nothing like what happened in New York and the scandal that seems to follow her around.

But her grandparents want her to have a social “normal” life, even if she is here to try to fly under the radar, so she does and ends up volunteering at a drug rehab center kinda thing.

But also, she just really enjoys walking in the woods (with them being next door to her grandparent’s house, why not?). But very soon after she arrives, bodies start to be discovered in the woods, and there are rumours flying around.

Who can Lena trust? Who is going around on a killing spree? Could it be Bo, the young man she met in the woods that seems to know his way around too well? Or could it be something more sinister?

This book takes you for a ride, and with Lena being the main point of view and the one telling us about her past and why she is where she is, but also, with her wanting to find out why someone is murdering people and who the murderer is, you keep wondering and asking yourself, could it be x?

I had an inkling of a theory about who the killer was and refused to believe one of the hints to another potential killer, but in general the book kept me guessing and wanting to understand and learn better. Lots of “maybe? what if?” and I didn’t want to put the book down. Raced through it and at the end, the hints had slowly been there all along so you don’t feel hit int he face by the revelations, but also, they are so subtle you can easily miss it all and end up being quite surprised at them.

Highly recommend for an intense fast paced murder thriller kind of book.

Book Review

It Ends With You Review

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It Ends With You by S. K. Wright

‘If I’d told the truth, it would have been fiction’

Everyone loves Eva. Beautiful, bright, fun, generous – she’s perfect.

So when her dead body is found in a ditch in the local woods the only thing anyone wants to know is: Who could have done this?

It has to be Luke, her boyfriend. He has the motive, the means, the opportunity and he’s no stranger to the police.

Even though the picture is incomplete, the pieces fit. But as time passes, stories change.

Told from six narrative strands, this cleverly woven and utterly compulsive novel challenges preconceptions; makes you second, third and fourth guess yourself; and holds an uncomfortable mirror up to the way societies and systems treat those they perceive to be on the outside

Rating:MoonKestrel Logo2 20pxMoonKestrel Logo2 20pxMoonKestrel Logo2 20pxMoonKestrel Logo2 20px

The best way to describe this book is to say that it started not too creepy and then it kept throwing plot twists at you that were surprising.

I loved finding out all of Eva’s “dirty” secrets and seeing how even then everyone was still sure Luke had done (despite the evidence that was shown). It was also sad to see how people react when someone comes from a less privileged background or are just different and that was quite interesting to read too.

The many relationships between families, between friends, between couples, and teachers, students, figures of authority and in general society were quite interesting to see.

The format made it fun to read (I do wonder if it will “age” well, as who knows how long some of the things used will stay). And even though I usually do not like having too many POV, this book makes the most of it and does it well.

Moon recommends

Read It Ends With You, I read it really fast and didn’t want to put it down. You may also enjoy One of Us is Lying or A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder (coming out next year). They’re all along the same vibe and lines and all good to read.