BoxWalla Book Subscription Box Review – April 2016
BoxWalla has four different genres of boxes: beauty, food, film, and book. This is a review of the book box! Subscribers can choose to stick with one genre during their subscription, or get different genres each time!
This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
The Subscription Box: BoxWalla Book
The Cost: $49.95 every other month with free shipping to the US
Ships to: US for free, Canada for $11.95, Internationally for $18.95
The Products: According to their site: “Every year, when somebody wins the Nobel Prize, most people go ‘Whooo?’ Every time we read these writers, after they win the Nobel, we wonder where they have been all ours lives. The answer to that isn’t that complicated. They’ve been right here! Our mission is to scour the vast expanses of Literature and bring to you the best.”
Keep Track of your subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!
Morning and Evening by Jon Fosse – $14.00
Jon Fosse is a beloved Norwegian writer, according to the Drunken Boxwallas. They also say in the letter that, Morning and Evening is written in stream of consciousness that is reminiscent of poetry.
Amazon’s quick summary of the book is:
A child who will be named Johannes is born. An old man named Johannes dies. Between these two points, Jon Fosse gives us the details of an entire life, starkly compressed. Beginning with Johannes’s father’s thoughts as his wife goes into labor, and ending with Johannes’s own thoughts as he embarks upon a day in his life when everything is exactly the same, yet totally different, Morning and Evening is a novel concerning the beautiful dream that our lives have meaning.
I started reading this book this evening, and I will be very honest with you all: stream of consciousness is difficult for me to read. It will be good for me to stretch my comfort zone though!
Gate of the Sun by Elias Khoury – $38.85
Elias Khoury is a Lebanese writer, and was born into a Greek Orthodox family in Beirut. The Drunken Boxwallas say that in this book, he writes from the point of view of a Muslim Palestinian refugee. They also say “His prose swings between Dostoevskian monologues that approach a stream of consciousness, and stories & myths that invoke Shehrzade’s 1000 stories.”
Archipelago Books has this to say about the book:
Gate of the Sun: Bab al-Shams is the first magnum opus of the Palestinian saga. After their country is torn apart in 1948, two men remain alone in a deserted makeshift hospital in the Shatila camp on the outskirts of Beirut. We enter a vast world of displacement, fear, and tenuous hope. Khalil holds vigil at the bedside of his patient and spiritual father, a storied leader of the Palestinian resistance who has slipped into a coma. As Khalil attempts to revive Yunes, he begins a story, which branches into many. Stories of the people expelled from their villages in Galilee, of the massacres that followed, of the extraordinary inner strength of those who survived, and of love.
Gate of the Sun is a Palestinian Odyssey. Beautifully weaving together haunting stories of survival and loss, love and devastation, memory and dream, Khoury humanizes the complex Palestinian struggle as he brings to life the story of an entire people. Originally published in Beirut in 1998, the novel has been a sensation throughout the Arab world, in Israel, and throughout Europe.
The Museum of Unconditional Surrender by Dubravka Ugresic – $15.80 (retail price: $18.95)
According to the Drunken Boxwallas, Dubravka Ugresic is a Croatian writer born in former Yugoslavia.
Here is what Amazon has to say about the book:
The Museum of Unconditional Surrender―by the renowned Yugoslavian writer Dubravka Ugresic―begins in the Berlin Zoo, with the contents of Roland the Walrus’s stomach displayed beside his pool (Roland died in August, 1961). These objects―a cigarette lighter, lollipop sticks, a beer-bottle opener, etc.―like the fictional pieces of the novel itself, are seemingly random at first, but eventually coalesce, meaningfully and poetically.
Written in a variety of literary forms, The Museum of Unconditional Surrendercaptures the shattered world of a life in exile. Some chapters re-create the daily journal of the narrator’s lonely and alienated mother, who shops at the improvised flea-markets in town and longs for her children; another is a dream-like narrative in which a circle of women friends are visited by an angel. There are reflections and accounts of the Holocaust and the Yugoslav Civil War; portraits of European artists; a recipe for Caraway Soup; a moving story of a romantic encounter the narrator has in Lisbon; descriptions of family photographs; memories of the small town in which Ugresic was raised.
Addressing the themes of art and history, aging and loss, The Museum is a haunting and an extremely original novel. In the words of the Times Literary Supplement, “it is vivid in its denunciation of destructive forces and in its evocation of what is at stake.”
This one looks like it is right up my alley, and I am glad I get one book in my comfort zone (not stream of consciousness lol) to devour when I’m finished with finals!
Verdict: This BoxWalla Book Box has a value of about $68.65. All three of the books look to be very interesting and engaging. Each of the authors is a Nobel Laureate, which is awesome. I really love the idea of this box. It feels like culture being delivered to my door, curated by someone who knows what they’re doing. I am looking forward to reading all three of these when I finally finish up this semester, and have a little bit of time before Summer semester begins!
Have you tried any of the BoxWalla boxes yet?