Although it typically takes me AGES to decide whether or not a purchase is worth it (time, money, transportation, waste, etc, etc), July was my birthday month…which meant that I felt that I needed to splurge on something for myself. Luckily, that decision coincided with my “removed from the wait-list” email from OwlCrate. I truly don’t even remember when I added myself to the wait-list and now that I finally have received my first box, I’m a bit on the fence as to whether it was worth the $29.99 USD plus shipping.
Spoiler Alert! July 2020 OwlCrate review with item spoilers below the cut.
What’s in the box?
The July 2020 box featured an OwlCrate exclusive copy of Goddess in the Machine, by Lora Beth Johnson, with gold foil gilded edges. Since I’m not very up-to-date on YA book releases, I had never heard of this book before. Here is a synopsis from Goodreads:
When Andra wakes up, she’s drowning.
Not only that, but she’s in a hot, dirty cave, it’s the year 3102, and everyone keeps calling her Goddess. When Andra went into a cryonic sleep for a trip across the galaxy, she expected to wake up in a hundred years, not a thousand. Worst of all, the rest of the colonists—including her family and friends—are dead. They died centuries ago, and for some reason, their descendants think Andra’s a deity. She knows she’s nothing special, but she’ll play along if it means she can figure out why she was left in stasis and how to get back to Earth.
Zhade, the exiled bastard prince of Eerensed, has other plans. Four years ago, the sleeping Goddess’s glass coffin disappeared from the palace, and Zhade devoted himself to finding it. Now he’s hoping the Goddess will be the key to taking his rightful place on the throne—if he can get her to play her part, that is. Because if his people realize she doesn’t actually have the power to save their dying planet, they’ll kill her.
With a vicious monarch on the throne and a city tearing apart at the seams, Zhade and Andra might never be able to unlock the mystery of her fate, let alone find a way to unseat the king, especially since Zhade hasn’t exactly been forthcoming with Andra. And a thousand years from home, is there any way of knowing that Earth is better than the planet she’s woken to?
From what I have read about the author and the story, linguistics will play a big part in the book, which intrigues me. It’s not a book I would pick up on my own, but I’ll probably just end up reading it soon so that it doesn’t end up forever on my TBR. I’ll have an update on my thoughts about it eventually.
Here is a list of the other items from the box:
- Star Wars inspired double-sided wooden bookmark by In the Reads
- Arrow paperclip set featuring design inspired by The Hunger Games
- Goddess in the Machine inspired enamel pin by Jubly Umph
- Riddle’s Tea Shoppe Sour Cherry Scones Tea Blend inspired by Carry On
- Ceramic mug by Cara Kozik
- Not pictured: Raven Cycle inspired apron
I was initially excited about the inclusion of a Hunger Games inspired item and was disappointed that it just ended up being paperclips. They are cute though, so bullet journal here I come! I also like Star Wars, but I don’t know how I feel about owning a piece of merch with Kylo Ren on it, hence why I only featured the Rae side. Call me picky, but John Boyega was robbed of his rightful spotlight and I am still bitter about it.
The mug was a win since it was inspired by my favorite HP installment, The Half-Blood Prince. (We won’t discuss that person in this space, but OwlCrate will not be including any HP items for the rest of 2020 and I’m not buying any licensed HP merch in the future.) The Carry On tea is also a fun idea and is very much fulfilling my curiosity of what a sour cherry scone would taste like (even if I really dislike Rainbow Rowell books). My least favorite item is the apron, which has a couple of misspellings in the design.
Even though I have a few complaints about the box, I will most likely end up using almost everything at some point, which I think is the point of why OwlCrate chooses the items that go into their boxes.
Was it worth the price?
Overall, I think that the price of each OwlCrate box is fair since the box includes a book and items that are useful. What it comes down to with subscription boxes for me is whether or not I would have purchased the items had they not been in the box. The answer for this one is probably no on half of the stuff.
I would recommend OwlCrate if you are looking to treat yourself and splurge a little, but I won’t be continuing a long-term subscription…I type this as I vacillate between buying August’s box or skipping since it is going to have a Strange the Dreamer item and a book sleeve. Strange the Dreamer is one of my all-time favorite books and I have been searching for purchase-worthy merch for a long time. Hmmm probably just one more month. Can you tell that despite all my complaints, I’m weak in the face of marketing? Yup. That’s me!
What are your thoughts on OwlCrate or other book subscription boxes? Have you ever received one before or are interested in purchasing one? Let me know in the comments!