May Fairyloot Unboxing

It comes as no surprise that book subscription boxes are my vice, and every month if I have saved enough money and can come up with a good enough excuse why I should treat myself (this month’s excuse was exams, in case you were curious), I ordered myself one. Fairyloot has definitely become my go-to for subscription boxes, as not only are they a UK based company, but also for the fact that every single one I’ve had in the past I loved. It also helps that the May theme was ‘Warriors & Legends’, and as a Classics student who is a huge fan of epic and wrote her dissertation on heroes, this was definitely going to be a box for me.

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Featured above is the design for this month, which was also included on a book mark – and, again, I’m a girl who is a big fan of all things dogs so clearly we’re onto a winner already.

The first two items were a tin of green tea named after the box from The Tea Leaf co and an exclusive candle titled ‘Mist’ to fit the theme of the book for this month’s box from In the Wick of Time. Two really lovely items, both of which I’ve already used (and, obviously, loved).

These next two are perhaps my favourite items in the whole box. The first is a pair of Celtic Socks, I believe from Fairyloot themselves, which are as comfortable as they are pretty. Then, as if this box was directly aimed at me, someone who basically tailored their degree into one on Ancient mythology, they included the book World Mythology in Bite-sized Chunks by Mark Daniels. Both items are just so well thought out and definitely work with the theme – and did I mention how much I love it? Yes? Oh.

Then we have a stunning bookmark from Ink and Wonder with a quote from The Lord of the Rings, ‘One ring to rule them all’. Apparently their bookmarks are made from sustainably sourced wood, so how can you not love it? Then there is the brilliant Metallic Feather Pen from Flora’s Wonder Emporium which, as you can probably guess from my reactions to everything else in this box, I absolutely adore.

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And finally, the beautiful book of this month is Flame in the Mist by Renee Ahdieh. Described as a retelling of Mulan set in feudal Japan, I am so onboard and definitely ready to bump it up on my TBR list – not to mention that it’s just such a beautiful book.

And so I come to the not-really-surprising conclusion that this box was everything I wanted and more, so I would highly recommend to any fantasy booklovers who are interested in trying out a subscription box to look into Fairyloot. Their boxes usually run out pretty quickly every month, so definitely keep an eye out for when they next go on sale as I’m sure you won’t be disappointed.

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(Still trying to improve my book-taking photos, and was actually pretty proud of how this turned out. You can however see that the book is balancing on something else, which I’m unashamed to admit is a copy of A Conjuring of Light by V.E Schwab because, honestly, there’s nothing stronger or more stable than that.)

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March Fairyloot Unboxing

I’ve received a few boxes from Fairyloot over the past year, one of my favourite book subscription boxes, and when I saw that not only was March their one year anniversary, but that the theme was ‘Myths and Monsters’, I obviously had to order one. (Being the fantasy/dragon/mythology/creatures lover that I am).

It did not disappoint.

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The first thing in this box were fairy lights, and not just any fairy lights but unicorn ones. You don’t understand how excited I was to receive these, especially as I broke my fairy lights a few weeks ago (I’m a bit of a klutz).

Next up were these two beauties – the first is a small handheld mirror with a brilliant mermaid design on the back, which is just beautiful. On the right is a pair of bookmarks which I adore, one of a dragon and the other a phoenix. You can already tell how well chosen these items are to fit with the theme, and the box includes such a range of fantastic items.

I didn’t think it could get much better, but lo and behold it did. There was a ‘Nephilim’ candle which packs such a punch smelling like cherries, and again just excellent timing as I’ve run out of candles. Then, my favourite item of the box (which I’ve already used) is a scarf of dragon scales. Ok, not actually dragon scales, but close enough. Pictured above, I’ve matched it with my dragon earrings and feeling like Daenerys ready to conquer the world.

Then, what we’ve all been waiting for, the book:

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I’ve seen this book all over the place, and for good reason. Laini Taylor is already well known for her bestselling series Daughter of Smoke and Bone, and to find out her new book fits in with a myths and monsters theme? I’m already a huge fan. This has definitely been added to my TBR pile, and I can’t wait to dive into it.

There’s a very good reason why Fairyloot is one of my favourite book subscriptions, and they’ve outdone themselves this month. 100% worth the money, and a UK company as well, so would highly recommend to everyone. If I had the money, I’d get it every single month – but, alas, I’m but a poor student. So if you can, definitely go out and get yourselves a Fairyloot! You won’t regret it.

Another Illumicrate!

It’s that wonderful time of the month when there is a wonderful parcel waiting for me – and that would be the joy that is Illumicrate. Honestly, just seeing the white and yellow box fills me with excitement, yellow is definitely the happiest colour without fail. After my last review (see here!), Daphne gave me a discount for this box so, honestly, double the excitement.

She did not disappoint.

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First up was the classic tote bag but with ‘in omnia paratus’, which is Latin for ‘ready for all things’. I mean, what is more enticing to a Classics student than Latin on a tote bag? (Nothing, that’s what) The design is so cute with the umbrellas, and being in London you always need an umbrella to be prepared so it fits perfectly. It was only afterwards that I found out that it was from Gilmore Girls, which although I don’t watch it makes more sense for this bag! Loved it.

Then we have two items that just go perfectly together, and with the mug from the last Illumicrate I have a perfect set! Two Harry Potter coasters, one with the original gang from the movie and the other matching the cast from the grown up Cursed Child trio! They’re absolutely beautiful, and I almost don’t want to use them and just have them framed on my wall. To go with my coasters is a packet of tea with a classic Lewis Carroll quote ‘It’s always Tea Time’ – truer words have never been spoken. Two more beautifully thought out items.

Colouring is just a good time, which is why having two prints to colour in and add to my wall of random things is just perfect. Not to mention the four mini posters with just gorgeous designs to pin up as well! There was also a discount for the most awesome looking bookmark ever, which had me incredibly excited. But not as excited as what’s coming up next.

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As you know, I attended YALC, my first ever book convention, and managed to find Daphne and give her a hug. Yet there was a book there that my friend and I thought looked particularly good called The Graces. There was a cool little quiz where you could find out what ‘witch’ you are, which my friend and I chose for each other and apparently I’m a Fire Witch – whose animals included wolves and horses, so, buzzing. Now what do I find in my box but a proof copy of said book?? You have no idea how much I squealed (no shame) and read through the author letter and immediately stuck in my signed book plate.

And then, a curve ball. It was the most wonderful, unexpected surprise of the whole box, but before I get into let’s tell a small story. The story of when Eleanor saw a cool proof at work of an upcoming fantasy book and thought ‘wow that looks good, I’ll have to pick that up at the end of the day’, only to discover that someone else thought it also looked good. End of shift arrives, and the bloody book has been taken away by someone else with very good taste. So comes the disappointment that one can only get when the one (book) gets away . But not to fear, Illumicrate is here to the rescue.

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That’s right, my pain was somehow felt and cured with a beautiful hardback copy of Nevernight in my box along with another signed bookplate, a card poster, and a bookmark! I can’t convey the happiness I felt at seeing this book, and may have said a little prayer of thanks to the Book Gods that keep watch over me.

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So another beautiful box and I couldn’t be happier with it. Each item was wonderful, and the two books were ideal for me especially. Daphne has outdone herself, and you should definitely check out Illumicrate, a quarterly book subscription service! Follow them on twitter @illumicrate and on Instagram for bookish joy. You won’t regret it!

Fairyloot June & July Review

If you don’t know that nothing else quite fills me with joy as book subscription boxes, you don’t know me too well. And now there are so many different ones to choose from, it’s like Christmas – except every month, which I think you’ll agree is a very good thing. I’ve tried (and loved) owlcrate and illumicrate, then my attention was brought to Fairyloot. I ordered the June box, because it sounded amazing, and experienced this rush of panic trying to secure a box because they run out so incredibly quickly. That was the first thing that made this subscription feel so different, this mad rush to order a box before they ran out – it felt far more tense that ordering from previous subscriptions, but it’s nice to see a company so in demand – because surely that means the product is good. Yet, before the June box even arrived, I discovered that the July box had two books and one would be signed and dedicated and the theme was pirates. So of course I immediately ordered one as soon as it went live, which brings us to now.

What I will say before I bombard you with all of the pictures and my ridiculous excitement, is that I am not sponsored and I bought these boxes with my own hard-earned money.

And so we begin with the June box, the theme of ‘Classic Twist’, and as a Classics and English student I couldn’t have been more excited.

Firstly we have three fantastic bookmarks with lovely quotes on them, my favourite being the one featured of C.S Lewis – tea and books just go together so well. Then we have a little wristband from Chapter 5 saying ‘proud to be bookish’. A candle that smells divine called ‘Bronte’s secret’, and these beautiful little sparrow (I think they’re sparrows, at least) earrings that I’ve worn so many times now and adore them.

Also within this June box was this beautiful print that I’m definitely putting on my wall and a Mr Darcy Pop Funko from the book/film Pride and Prejudice and Zombies! Honestly, everything in me just adores every single item in this box, and I’m not even onto the book yet.

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……which was Ivory and Bone by Julie Eshbaugh! I was almost convinced, after seeing some other book boxes doing similar themes feature the book My Lady Jane, that that would be the book I’d receive, so I was overjoyed to be surprised! The book sounds fantastic and I can’t wait to read it, a brilliant pick, also along with a lovely letter from the author.

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And that was the June Fairyloot box, which had to be my ideal box with all the English classic items and a brilliant book. I was over the moon with this box, and all of the items worked perfectly with the theme – a beautifully put together box!

Now, for July’s ‘pirate’ theme. I know, pirates.

The first items I see in the July box are the fantastic tote bag saying ‘I ship it’ and a bookmark that you can colour in. Not only is the tote bag just fantastic with the theme – I hadn’t even thought of something featuring ‘I ship it’, but it’s just perfection – but I’ve also never seen a bookmark that you can colour in before, so just a wonderful idea.

Then we have a lovely notebook with Treasure Island on the front, and a lip balm called ‘Pirate Bounty’ which I’ve already used and adored. The first book features, yes, the first, was Inherited by Freedom Matthews – and, can I just say, what a brilliant name for a book about pirates. Not only was there a letter, but this book was also signed and dedicated! Unfortunately my name was spelled wrong, but ‘Elanor’ is close enough for me.

The second book, a proof I believe, was ‘Frostblood’ by Elly Blake, and what was so great about this was that you either received an icy frostblood copy, or the flaming fireblood copy. I was so incredibly happy to get a fireblood copy, just because with that you had a Daenerys mini Pop Funko as opposed to a Jon Snow! Seeing as I aim to be the Mother of Dragons, this was simply wonderful and I couldn’t have been happier. To go with the book, there was a fire and ice bath bomb which I’m looking forward to trying as soon as possible.

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And so another brilliant box! The perfect fantasy box, in my opinion, with a real mix of things that are bound to appeal to different people. You can tell that the items were really thought about and carefully picked, and it was nice to see items that matched not only the theme, but linked to the books included as well.

So if you’re after a fantasy book subscription box, I couldn’t recommend Fairyloot enough – just make sure you order quickly, because they run out fast! One really nice feature about Fairyloot, which I haven’t seen before, is that you have a unique hashtag to connect with another subscriber online which is such a lovely idea. There are also group discussions every month about the previous box’s book, and the sense of a community from a subscription service is lovely to be a part of.

Illumicrate review

We all know that book subscription boxes are my favourite things on earth, and if I had enough money I would get them all. Alas, the student life doesn’t allow that much of a luxury but I was able to afford Illumicrate this month. I’ve previously reviewed owlcrate on this blog, and Illumicrate is similar in the sense that it’s a subscription box that features a book with some bookish goodies. There are two very important differences though: it isn’t monthly but a quarterly box, and it is a UK box. UK people! For my readers who aren’t in the UK, you probably don’t care, but for me this is very very exciting. I had heard of Illumicrate before, but simply assumed that it was like the rest and shipping out from the US, but no. So when I decided to treat myself to a book subscription box for my exam season and discovered Illumicrate, I thought there was no chance I could not give it a go – not to mention that it ships out in February, May, August and November, so it was perfect timing.

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First off is the book featured in the box, and whilst I’m not always aware of all the up and coming books, I had heard of When We Collided  by Emery Lord, featured on several Booktube channels that I watch. So when I opened the box and actually knew the book I may or may not have become slightly (a lot) excited. That cover, just look how gorgeous it is! It came with a few cards as seen above which I believe are postcards, but they’ll all probably end up on my wall.

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The first item I found in the box made me practically squeal, because just look at it. Although difficult to photograph, it came with a little image on a tag – it’s a stamp of a cute little fox on top of a stack of books, and if you don’t love it then you’re insane. A beautiful design and a fantastic idea for an item to include in a box.

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I think I’ve previously expressed my love for fun mugs, especially of the book variety, so when I see that Illumicrate is featuring a mug? OH MY GOODNESS ME, I was ecstatic. No more needs to be said.

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Another favourite of mine in the box was this adorable badge of a book saying ‘Readers Gonna Read’, which is just perfection.

Other items included a paperclip of a bookworm (again, just a brilliant idea), the cutest ‘To Be Read’/’To Review’/’Books to Buy’ notepad which I didn’t know I needed but I definitely do (hello organisation for this blog), these cute little badges, along with an extract from another book and with a Cinnamon Muffin recipe. You can just tell how much effort and thought went into this box, and I’m not even finished yet.

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I may not know a lot of authors, but Laini Taylor is very much a familiar name. I haven’t had the chance to read any of her books yet, but from what I hear she is a well-deserved popular YA author – so to have an exclusive look at the beginning of her upcoming book? Incredible.

The first thing that crossed my mind when I had rummaged through all the contents of this box was how much there was. It’s amazing, when you really look at each item, and you can definitely be certain that you’re getting what you paid for. And each item was just so well thought of and ingenious – if every box is like this, then I will definitely be saving up for the next one. So if you’re interested in investing in a book subscription box, be that one or many, definitely consider Illumicrate. It’s possible with some of the monthly boxes that some of the items and books included are a bit hit-and-miss, but you can’t really be angry as they’re producing a new box and organising every single month. With Illumicrate, you at least have that guarantee that more time and consideration has been put into every box. I’m glad I had the chance to get my hands on one.

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And in case you were wondering, I bought this box with my own hard-earned money 🙂