Thursday, June 11, 2015

Book Riot Quarterly Box #7 (Recieved 6/10/15)

So my husband gets Loot Crate and I love it, the idea of some random fun stuff being delivered every month, so I started looking for a book related subscription box, and my choices were Powell Books or Book Riot Quarterly.
Book Riot comes out 4 times a year and costs $50 per shipment.  It was described as "The theme of Book Riot's mailings is The Reading Life. Each box contains a great book and a bunch of other bookish stuff that readers will love."
Powell's is every 6 weeks and costs $39.95 per shipment.  It was described as "Powell's subscription club delivers the best new books, with special attention to independent publishers. Signed first editions. Inventive, original sets. Exclusive printings.... Every six to eight weeks, another installment to read and admire."
Two other options I tossed pretty early on was the Book Riot YA quarterly and Owl crate.  Both are YA genre's which I read, but they felt limiting to me.

I debated long and hard about which subscription to go with, but I finally settled on Book Riot's because the reviews of the boxes sent had more stuff in it that I thought I would like.  I placed my order in March and I waited impatiently for my first box to arrive.  The Theme for Box #7 was "Technology, the Future and Reading."  When the mailman arrived today with my box, I opened it all giddy and super excited, but I was really disappointed by what I found inside.

First there was the book riot letter explaining what was included in the box (and because I wasn't one of the lucky randomly selected subscribers, what bonus items I didn't get.)

The first book included was The World Exchange by Alena Graedon ($15.95).  Let letter describes it as "a near-ish future cyberpunk novel."  It seems the premise is that handheld technology has replaces books/newspapers/libraries.  There as always are a few die-hard fans of print and they are struggling to publish the last edition of the North American Dictionary of the English Language.  Right before it is to be published the editor-in-chief goes missing, apparently along with words themselves.  The protagonist is his daughter Anana Johnson, so of course she and a friend set out to find out her father and the words. It sounds like an interesting concept, I will happily give it a shot.
Included also was the "bonus item" of a special coda written after then end of the the book, I think that it was the weird 1 page letter thing included, so I stuck it at the end of the book, maybe once I read the book it will make sense.  There was a second bonus item that I did not receive which was a "Word Flu Prevention Kit."  I tried googling it, but couldn't find out what it was.  :(

The second book was Smarter Than You Think by Clive Barker ($17.00).  This appears to be a non fiction book about if technology is making us dumber, I think the conclusion is no.  It seems like an ok read, not something I would have picked up on my own for sure though.
It included a bonus item of an online essay by Clive Barker about reading War and Peace on an e-reader vs a real book.  I got about halfway through it and was bored, hopefully the book holds my attention better than the essay.

Also included was a Grid-It Organizer ($11.99), it is small 5x7, so will fit well in my purse.  It has a bunch of elastic loops interwoven together, and it market as holding all your stuff (phone, cords, pens, etc.) in place in your bag.  Its an interesting concept, not sure if it will be useful, but I'll give it a shot, I always am looking for better ways to organize my purse.

Final item was a Pop Chart Lab Literary Genres Map Poster ($29).  This was the item I think I liked best from the box, it immediately went up on the wall in my office.  It just looks so cool!

There was also a coupon for $20 off Book Riot Live event in New York in November of 2015.  I will not be attending this event so this coupon was useless to me, but I guess it does add value to the box. Shhh.... and if you read my blog and are going, I am sure you can use the code.

There was potential to get one of two bonus books Symphony for the City of Dead by MT Anderson or Fat Girl Walking by Brittany Gibbons, I didn't get either of those either.  :(

So the total value was $93.94, although because I can't use the coupon, my value was only $73.94.  I got my monies worth technically.  I guess I was disappointed because when I looked through the previous boxes, there were notes from authors and cooler goodies, than an online essay.  I felt a little cheated because I had built it up so much in my mind I suppose.  I had really debated and Book Riot had seemed to have cooler book related items than Powell's, and the only item I got that I really liked was the poster, it just seemed like a bit of a cope out.  There was nothing I hated, it just didn't live up to my expectations I guess.  I'll give it one more go, but if I don't like the September box I will cancel and try Powell's after all.

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