Hauls

Unboxing | BOTM February 2020

Hauls & Unboxings

Hello and welcome to my monthly Book of the Month post! This month I picked only one book, I am trying to read all of my backlisted BOTM books so I don’t want to add too many more to the pile. This month I chose something a bit outside my normal reading, but I am still excited about it. Now, on to the haul!


Description

“In this twisty tale from Moore (The Sherlockian), the Academy Award-winning screenwriter of The Imitation Game, young juror Maya Seale is convinced that African American high school teacher Bobby Nock is innocent of killing the wealthy white female student with whom he appears to have been involved and persuades her fellow jurors likewise. Ten years later, a true-crime docuseries reassembles the jurors, and Maya, now a defense attorney, must prove her own innocence when one of them is found dead in Maya’s room.” –goodrerads.com


This month I decided on The Holdout, a thriller of sorts that is driven via the court system. I normally do not read thrillers or mysteries that have a lot of law enforcement, courtroom drama, or themes along those lines. Normally, my thrillers of choice are more domestic and psychological. If there is law enforcement. it is usually towards the end, not the entire plot.  I will say the exception to this would have to be the Mr. Mercedes series by Stephen King, although it. was a mix of a detective mystery and something else.

I am excited to give this one a go because it seems like it’s a mixture of a detective mystery and a domestic thriller. So, I feel like this would be a good way to see if I enjoy thrillers along those lines, just dipping my toes while still in my comfort zone a bit.

I will also openly admit, I loved the Imitation Game, so that was also a bit of a selling point of this book. If you do get the chance, it is a wonderful story, but totally heart breaking and could be very difficult to watch. Do a bit of research to see if it would be triggering for you before giving it a go.


Does this book sound interesting to you?

If you have BOTM what book did you pick this month?

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Hauls

Unboxing | Tombow VIP Club January 2020

Hauls & Unboxings

Hello and welcome to a little unboxing of the Tombow VIP Club. I was not planning ordering and unboxing this today, but honestly Tombow loves to throw these boxes out randomly so here I am.  I saw it in my email and I really loved what was inside so I ordered it. In the US this is $25 with free shipping. Now to unbox and see if it is worth the money! If this is still available you can find it here: Tombow VIP Club.


I just love how festive the box is when I opened it I needed to take a picture. It is so bright and color, just what I have needed with all of the long nights of winter. I truly miss the color of Spring, Summer, and Fall.

Here are the items inside the box, first the exclusive Tombow playing cards. I love playing solitaire in my free time so these were a really cute edition in my eyes. Also great for an unexpected card game with friends, these are said to be about $12.99. This is about on par with some nicer playing cards I have seen at the store. Next we have a new collection of their Dual Brush Pens called Celebration. This is a collection of 10 colors which include; 055, 452, 245,885, 723,  850, 026, 451, 743, and 925. This is said to be worth $26.99. I have used and loved thee Dual Brush Pens for a few years now, I personally really enjoy them. Lastly, we have MONO Drawing Pens in 6 different sizes; 01, 02, 03, 04, 05, and 08. I have not used this before, but I am really excited to give them a try. I feel like they would be great in my bullet journal! These are also said to be worth $16.99.

So, if you total all of that up this box is worth $56.97. Very much above the $25 price of the box. The Dual Brush Pens alone are the price of the box.

Here is a little peak into the cards, they are really beautiful cards and feature the work from the design team.  It seems that each suit has its own artist, which is a wonderful way to showcase their team members and their talents.

Here is a swatch of all of the colors in the Celebration set as well as all of the MONO Drawing Pens. I am happy to report that none of them bleed through, which I was really thrilled about. Pens can be very tricky at times, but for reference I use Archer and Olive  A5 dot grid notebook, so your experience might not be the same as mine if you use a different notebook.

Overall I am thrilled by this Tombow VIP Club box. For me it is a great deal, I get to try new things without putting out the full price. That is always something I worry about, spending money and buying something full price and it doesn’t work out. This really gives me a bit more confidence to go outside of my normal box and give something a go.


What did you think of this box?

What was your favorite time? Do you use any of these supplies?

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Hauls

Unboxing | BOTM January 2020

Hauls & Unboxings

Hello and welcome to another post! I am excited to share my Book of the Month this month because I ended up with three books. Oops! Since I am a BOTM BFF ( I have been subscribed for more than 12 month, time flies when reading good books!) I get the to pick one of the Book of the Year Nominations for free as a thank you from them. Then I decided to add an extra book, because I had such a hard time deciding on just one. Anyway, here are the books!


As I said, I had a hard time choosing between two books, these two were Things in Jars by Jess Kidd and The Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James. Simone St. James wrote the The Broken Girls and I read it last year and I ADORED it, so when I saw another one of her books on here I wanted it. But, I then read the description of Things in Jars. This book is a combination of macabre with ghosts, supernatural elements, but also a Victorian mystery led by female detective. I was sold, so I ended up picking both books, one of thee beauties of BOTM. Now, Recursion by Blake Crouch was my free pick from their Book of the Year finalists. It sounded really interesting and different, so I am also excited to give this one a go as well. Below are the descriptions of all three of the books.


Things in Jars by Jess Kidd Description 

“Bridie Devine—female detective extraordinaire—is confronted with the most baffling puzzle yet: the kidnapping of Christabel Berwick, secret daughter of Sir Edmund Athelstan Berwick, and a peculiar child whose reputed supernatural powers have captured the unwanted attention of collectors trading curiosities in this age of discovery.

Winding her way through the labyrinthine, sooty streets of Victorian London, Bridie won’t rest until she finds the young girl, even if it means unearthing a past that she’d rather keep buried. Luckily, her search is aided by an enchanting cast of characters, including a seven-foot tall housemaid; a melancholic, tattoo-covered ghost; and an avuncular apothecary. But secrets abound in this foggy underworld where spectacle is king and nothing is quite what it seems.

Blending darkness and light, history and folklore, Things in Jarsis a spellbinding Gothic mystery that collapses the boundary between fact and fairy tale to stunning effect and explores what it means to be human in inhumane times.” –goodreads.com


The Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James Description 

“The secrets lurking in a rundown roadside motel ensnare a young woman, just as they did her aunt thirty-five years before, in this new atmospheric suspense novel from the national bestselling and award-winning author of The Broken Girls.

Upstate NY, 1982. Every small town like Fell, New York, has a place like the Sun Down Motel. Some customers are from out of town, passing through on their way to someplace better. Some are locals, trying to hide their secrets. Viv Delaney works as the night clerk to pay for her move to New York City. But something isn’t right at the Sun Down, and before long she’s determined to uncover all of the secrets hidden…” –goodreads.com 


Recursion by Blake Crouch Description 

“Memory makes reality.

That’s what New York City cop Barry Sutton is learning as he investigates the devastating phenomenon the media has dubbed False Memory Syndrome—a mysterious affliction that drives its victims mad with memories of a life they never lived.

That’s what neuroscientist Helena Smith believes. It’s why she’s dedicated her life to creating a technology that will let us preserve our most precious memories. If she succeeds, anyone will be able to re-experience a first kiss, the birth of a child, the final moment with a dying parent.

As Barry searches for the truth, he comes face-to-face with an opponent more terrifying than any disease—a force that attacks not just our minds but the very fabric of the past. And as its effects begin to unmake the world as we know it, only he and Helena, working together, will stand a chance at defeating it.

But how can they make a stand when reality itself is shifting and crumbling all around them?”- goodreads.com


So there you have it, the three books I received in my January BOTM! I am so excited about jumping in and read these titles this year.

QOTD: Have you read any of these books? Which one would you have picked? Do you subscribe to a book box? If so which one?

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Hauls

BOTM Unboxing | December 2019

Unboxing

Hello and welcome to yet another BOTM unboxing. This month I honestly had a hard time picking a book, I was kind of tempted to skip. Upon first glance, none of the books were ones I was interested in apart from one I already own, so that was kinda a bust. Then, as I took the time to read through the descriptions, I came across this months pick!


I don’t know about you, but when I was in high school I had to read The Great Gatsby. While reading the description for The Glittering Hour, for some reason it reminded me of The Great Gatsby, but also the life style of the Fitzgeralds themselves. These figures seem larger than life and walk a fine line between partying and loosing it all. I feel like the main female character might live a life style familiar to them, but I could easily be wrong.

In addition to sparking a connection to the 1920’s over the top partying, I also love a good forbidden love story. I know it is so beaten to death, but honestly if I can read about true love against all odds,  I am so there. Also, it doesn’t seem like it is going to be a quick burn romance, since the story takes place over a few decades. This, is also a selling point because it seems like there might not be an insta-love situation, I really hope there isn’t one.

I really am excited to see how Selina Lennox balances staying on the “right side of a scandal” and what type of decisions she will have to make when it comes to Lawrence. I am hoping for a slow burn read and hopefully I won’t be too mad at the main character for her choices. Fingers crossed, I feel like this could go either way and I am excited to find out.


Does this book sound like something you would read?

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Hauls

Unboxing | Coffee and a Classic October 2019

Unboxing

Hello and welcome back! I am here to share another Coffee and a Classic unboxing with you today. I don’t know about you, but getting book mail, even if it is from myself, is one of the most exciting things. When I saw this on my doorstep I ran inside and had to open it right away, even if the lighting was bad, blog pictures be damned! Anyway, here is what I found inside.


The red colors used in this months artwork and bookish item really caught my attention. Also, as you can see this months book is the Scarlet Letter, so it makes complete sense.

This months coffee is a maple sundae flavored, which just sounds amazing to me. I have a huge sweet tooth, so I feel like I am going to very much enjoy this brew. I will say, I did switch next months box over to hot chocolate so I could see what fun ones they send as well as having a backlog of coffee from this box. It is all delicious, but I can only drink so much coffee!

Next is a pot holder with the quote, “We dream in out own waking moments, and wake in our sleep”, which is a quote from the book. It is a lovely quote, but sadly this is not something I would use in my kitchen since red would clash quite a bit.

The bottom two items I will talk about next.

As you can see a bit better in this picture, it was so hard to get the ceramic warmer to stop rolling over/away to take this picture. But, this mini warmer is powered by the cutest little tea light, which was provided by them. Also, they added some essential oil, which I think you just place in the top, I think you might have to mix it with water as well, not 100% sure. I do enjoy the smell of eucalyptus to this was a very nice treat to get. I also love lighting candles so having a little warmer use a tea light is just up my alley.

Last, but not least we have the classic of the month, The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne. I read this a year or two ago, so this edition is not getting onto my TBR, win for the TBR! It is such a beautiful edition so I am happy to have it. I will admit, I did not love this book the first time I read it, but maybe if I read it again I will like it more. I have since read another book by this author and I started off not enjoying the style, then slowly got into it. I feel like I might appreciate the authors style more now. Funny how things like this change.


What is your favorite classic? Have you read The Scarlet Letter?

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Unboxing | Coffee and a Classic September 2019

Unboxing

Hello and welcome to another unboxing of Coffee and a Classic! This month is something extra special since it is Halloween related. I know I am posting this a tad bit late, but better late than never! Anyway, I was so excited about this months pick because I have read the main tale that was sent out, and loved, but I did not read the “Other Stories” so I am excited to find more stories I adore. Anyway, on to the unboxing.


Here is the goodness I saw when I opened the box up. I do love that they really individualize every box to totally surround the box. It really adds to the experience for me.

Here are some of the goodies in this months box. I have to say I was so thankful to get the book light. Mine was starting to act funny and I was ready to go out and get a new one when my next paycheck came in, this could not have been more perfect timing! Also, this months bookmark is so adorable, I started using it right away. Plus, I can always find my books in the dark now with this glow in the dark potion.

I really loved the story of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, talking about the dual sides to each person and humanity as a whole. It is just as much as a monster story as much as a story about humans, which makes it even more eerie. Even though I really enjoyed reading this story, I for some reason have not picked up another one by this author so I am happy to see the & Other Stories on the cover of this beautiful edition.

Now, I think this is my favorite thing I have gotten from Coffee and Classic since being a subscriber. I took this pillow case and stuffed it full of teddy bear stuffing and put it right now my bed. It is a perfect little Halloween decorate as well as a literary one and that just makes my halloween book loving heart happy. Also, it is a pun and I LOVE puns.


Have you read this book?

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Hauls

BOTM Unboxing | October 2019

Unboxing

Hello and welcome to yet another BOTM unboxing. I would like to say that I was so excited about the possibilities that they could have had this month, but I think for once I was not torn between which book to get. Normally I am debating for an entire day which one to pick and looking at reviews. This month, I was only interested in one book mainly because I am in a spooky reading mood, none of the books this month really were “spooky” or “Eerie” to me. All, but one.


-Description-

Lillian and Madison were unlikely roommates and yet inseparable friends at their elite boarding school. But then Lillian had to leave the school unexpectedly in the wake of a scandal and they’ve barely spoken since. Until now, when Lillian gets a letter from Madison pleading for her help.

Madison’s twin stepkids are moving in with her family and she wants Lillian to be their caretaker. However, there’s a catch: the twins spontaneously combust when they get agitated, flames igniting from their skin in a startling but beautiful way. Lillian is convinced Madison is pulling her leg, but it’s the truth.

Thinking of her dead-end life at home, the life that has consistently disappointed her, Lillian figures she has nothing to lose. Over the course of one humid, demanding summer, Lillian and the twins learn to trust each other—and stay cool—while also staying out of the way of Madison’s buttoned-up politician husband. Surprised by her own ingenuity yet unused to the intense feelings of protectiveness she feels for them, Lillian ultimately begins to accept that she needs these strange children as much as they need her—urgently and fiercely. Couldn’t this be the start of the amazing life she’d always hoped for?

With white-hot wit and a big, tender heart, Kevin Wilson has written his best book yet—a most unusual story of parental love. –goodreads.com


-Why This Book?-

This month I settled on Nothing to See Here by Kevin Wilson, for two reasons. The first being that this was the only book that really fit into the reading I would want to do this month. I am all about creepy books and this has children that catch on fire when they are upset or mad, or something along those lines. So, it was odd enough for me to pick. Also, the cover really pulled me in initially. Why would a book have a person just standing in a hallway on fire? Well, I read the description and got my answer.

Another reason I picked up this book was because it seemed like it would be a really quick short read and since I am reading mostly larger books this month, American Gods and The Institution among others, it was a selling point for me. I am trying to read my BOTM picks the month I get them so this played a part in my choice.


Well, there you have it my BOTM unboxing. I hope you enjoyed finding out which book I picked and why. If you get BOTM I would love to know which book you picked this month. If you don’t I would love to know if this would be a book you would be interested in picked up from the bookstore or library.

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Unboxing | Coffee and a Classic August 2019

Unboxing

Hello and welcome to another unboxing of Coffee and a Classic! I am so excited about this months box, because it is a book I loved and wanted to reread in the future. I don’t want to type too much and ruin the surprise so I am just going to be jumping into the unboxing and then gush about why I really loved this book.


Here is the first thing I saw when I opened the box. I loved this color of blue that popped out at me. Also, I saw a really beautiful cover peaking through. It gave me 1920s/Great Gatsby vibes I am not sure why now that I know the book.

I opened it up and I saw that it was a hand printed kitchen towel with the quote “All the variety, all the charm, all the beauty of life is made up of light and shadow”― Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina. Which, I love this quote the only bummer is that my kitchen is not this color, but if it was this would be on display somewhere. The other items I picked out was a ribbon bookmark, which is cute and goes with the book for sure. I have never used a ribbon bookmark so using this will be a new experience. Another goodie I got was a hand poured candle, I did not LOVE the smell of this personally, but my friend did so I gave it to them. It is apparently very fragrant and burns nicely.


Now, here is the coffee and the classic! This month the book is Anna Karenina. I read this book last year and I have to say at first I gave it only 3 stars. Since reading it I keep moving the rating up because I always think back to this book and I realize how relatable this classic is even today, which is hard to come by. The characters were also just so out there at times and it was just a blast to read and I realized more and more after putting it down. I normally have the opposite experience with a classic, I like it less or I don’t ever think about it again. This months coffee smelled so yummy, I cannot wait to have a cup of it. I just wanted to finish up my coffee from last month before jumping into this one.

Now, can we just take a moment to appreciate the beauty of this edition. It is much a beautiful cream color and the details are just magnificent. I am so excited to reread this book with this edition. I am going to feel like such a fancy reader with a ribbon bookmark.


What did you think of this book box?

Have you ever read Anna Karenina? If you haven’t I recommend you give it a try! 

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Hauls

Unboxing | Coffee and a Classic July 2019

Unboxing

Last month was my first time getting www.coffeeandaclassic.com box and I loved it so much I decided to continue my subscription.  Like my previous month, I am subscribed for the Adult Classic Starter Box, which is 29.99. Also, note that you can pick either coffee or tea, I have picked the coffee option. Anyway, I am excited to be sharing this unboxing with you!


Here is a card on top that shows you everything that is going to be in the box. I will say I don’t usually pay attention to this until I unpack everything and want a little more information such as the artist or shop that it same from. I  love that these are made different for each month to match the book instead of having the same card with different font, it really shows how much they care.

I really love the different coffees each month and how they take the book and try to take key aspects of the story or take inspiration and come up with these coffee blends. I opened this one up and it smelled so good. I am looking forward to drinking it within the next few weeks. At the top and center we can see one of the bookish goodies is a puzzle with artwork based off of the book. I thought this was such a cute idea. Since my post, Operation Find A Hobby | Puzzle , I have been doing puzzles off and on and I was really excited to get my hands on this. Next at the bottom center is this months bookmark. It is a very cute large paperclip with a fabric flair made of denim.

This months book is The Adventure of Huckleberry Finn, while I have heard about this book. I have absolutely no idea what this book is about. So, I went to good old goodreads and found the following:

A nineteenth-century boy from a Mississippi River town recounts his adventures as he travels down the river with a runaway slave, encountering a family involved in a feud, two scoundrels pretending to be royalty, and Tom Sawyer’s aunt who mistakes him for Tom. –goodreads.com

Honestly, this description doesn’t really tell me too much. It does tell me that I will be following a boy and an African American man, who is a runaway slave, in the mid-west and south. Which, sounds dangerous and I am really hoping already that they are not caught and the man is able to maintain his freedom. I feel like there might also be a lot of drama with the case of mistaken identity as well? I really am not sure what to expect. On top of that they are meeting some scoundrels, I feel like there is going to be a lot of bad things happening to the main characters, I hope I am wrong. If you have read this please let me know a little more without spoiling to much.

  Now in the picture of the book, there was two little boxes next to the book. At first I was kinda unsure about them, but it seems like these are straw made out of  wheat. I am going to assume that this has to do with the book since this box is so good about finding objects that actually go with the book. I am curious to see how these tie in.


What did you think of this book box?

Have you ever read The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn?

What did you think?

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Hauls

BOTM Unboxing | July 2019

Unboxing

Hello and welcome to another BOTM unboxing! This choices this month were so wonderful, it took me quite a bit to pick the one I wanted. I have to say I am so happy with my choice. Right after I made my choice I started seeing more and more people talk and post about this non-fiction novel, I just coundn’t wait to get my hands on it. Here is the book I picked this month!


 


-Blurb-

It thrills us and torments us. It controls our thoughts, destroys our lives, and it’s all we live for. Yet we almost never speak of it. And as a buried force in our lives, desire remains largely unexplored—until now. Over the past eight years, journalist Lisa Taddeo has driven across the country six times to embed herself with ordinary women from different regions and backgrounds. The result, Three Women, is the deepest nonfiction portrait of desire ever written and one of the most anticipated books of the year.

We begin in suburban Indiana with Lina, a homemaker and mother of two whose marriage, after a decade, has lost its passion. She passes her days cooking and cleaning for a man who refuses to kiss her on the mouth, protesting that “the sensation offends” him. To Lina’s horror, even her marriage counselor says her husband’s position is valid. Starved for affection, Lina battles daily panic attacks. When she reconnects with an old flame through social media, she embarks on an affair that quickly becomes all-consuming.

In North Dakota we meet Maggie, a seventeen-year-old high school student who finds a confidant in her handsome, married English teacher. By Maggie’s account, supportive nightly texts and phone calls evolve into a clandestine physical relationship, with plans to skip school on her eighteenth birthday and make love all day; instead, he breaks up with her on the morning he turns thirty. A few years later, Maggie has no degree, no career, and no dreams to live for. When she learns that this man has been named North Dakota’s Teacher of the Year, she steps forward with her story—and is met with disbelief by former schoolmates and the jury that hears her case. The trial will turn their quiet community upside down.

Finally, in an exclusive enclave of the Northeast, we meet Sloane—a gorgeous, successful, and refined restaurant owner—who is happily married to a man who likes to watch her have sex with other men and women. He picks out partners for her alone or for a threesome, and she ensures that everyone’s needs are satisfied. For years, Sloane has been asking herself where her husband’s desire ends and hers begins. One day, they invite a new man into their bed—but he brings a secret with him that will finally force Sloane to confront the uneven power dynamics that fuel their lifestyle.

Based on years of immersive reporting, and told with astonishing frankness and immediacy, Three Women is a groundbreaking portrait of erotic longing in today’s America, exposing the fragility, complexity, and inequality of female desire with unprecedented depth and emotional power. It is both a feat of journalism and a triumph of storytelling, brimming with nuance and empathy, that introduces us to three unforgettable women—and one remarkable writer—whose experiences remind us that we are not alone. -via goodreads.com


-Why This Book?-

The main reason I decided to pick this book was because it didn’t just follow one person or different women who are the same age.  I really liked how the author talked to women who have different live experiences and are at different points in their lives. I also liked that a personal experience led to the author exploring this topic because it shows how passionate the author is. I am really looking forward to hearing the stories of these women.


Would you ever read this book? Is this a topic that interests you?

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