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BoxWalla Book Subscription Box Review – November 2018

BoxWalla is a subscription box company dedicated to sharing uncommon food, books, films, and green beauty items, and they curate bi-monthly boxes for each of those categories. Subscribe to one or more, and add or switch interests at any time. 

BoxWalla is run by a couple of self-declared “aesthetes” with a keen eye for meaningful details. Even the package is a sustainable, handmade box made from paper!

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.)

This review is of the Boxwalla Book subscription, which is $29.95 every other month. 

About the Boxwalla Book Subscription Box

The Subscription Box: BoxWalla Book

The Cost: $29.95 every other month + free US shipping

The Products: Thoughtfully curated literature by prospective Nobel laureates from around the world.

Ships to: US (for free) and international locations

Boxwalla Book Subscription Box November 2018 Review

Here’s a note from the box’s curators. They offer an intro to the included books, highlighting a bit about each author and each novel itself. They also mention a perk for US subscribers of the BoxWalla Book box, which is a free month of Filmstruck, “a streaming service that includes TCM classics & films from The Criterion Collection. Fun!

Too Loud a Solitude by Bohumil Hrabal – Retail Value $11.99 (found here for $10.19)

Wow. I’m not sure what I was expecting from this little (98-page) book but certainly, it wasn’t what I found once I started reading. It’s the perfect balance of melancholy and romantic in the way that solitude can often be. This novel is written in the first person and I was admittedly a little critical that the first few pages seemed to be telling rather than showing details of his character, but I quickly let those judgments dissipate as I sunk into the more subtly communicated beauty and pain of his existence. An Amazon reviewer mentioned that this book seems more like poetry than prose to them—I would say it’s a brilliant crossroads, and for that reason, I will likely read it again and again over the years.

Book Summary on Amazon:

Hantá rescues books from the jaws of his compacting press and carries them home. Hrabal, whom Milan Kundera calls “our very best writer today,” celebrates the power and the indestructibility of the written word. Translated by Michael Henry Heim.

The Dew Breaker by Edwidge Danticat – Retail Value $16.00 (Found here for $12.63)

I was excited and filled with anticipation for this book by a female Haitian author. It begins strong, packing in descriptive imagery so that I felt like I was in the room from Page 1. As I fell deeper into the work, I found myself learning of Haiti’s important history in such a way that made me ache, yet yearn for more story. This book is arranged as a collection of short stories that all connect and relate to one family. Rather than me fumbling for words to appropriately portray this work’s beauty and poignancy, I simply highly recommend you read it for yourself!

Book Summary on Amazon:

In this award-winning, bestselling work of fiction that moves between Haiti in the 1960s and New York in the present day, we meet an unusual man who is harboring a vital, dangerous secret. He is a quiet man, a good father and husband, a fixture in his Brooklyn neighborhood, a landlord and barber with a terrifying scar across his face. As the book unfolds, we enter the lives of those around him, and his secret is slowly revealed. Edwidge Danticat’s brilliant exploration of the “dew breaker”– or torturer– is an unforgettable story of love, remorse, and hope; of personal and political rebellions; and of the compromises we make to move beyond the most intimate brushes with history. It firmly establishes her as one of America’s most essential writers.

Let Us Go Then: Book 1: The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock by T. S. Eliot, illustrated by Evan Robertson – Retail Value $12.00

This small, giftable book combines two art forms, displaying a known and loved poem upon pages filled with greyscale digital illustrations. I had never read Eliot’s poem and so it was interesting to explore it for the first time in this format. I imagine it’s a much different experience than simply reading it on paper or on a screen, and I quite liked having the opportunity to ponder its various parts, sectioned out for us by Robertson, in the context of the visual art.

Book Summary on Obvious State:

T.S. Eliot’s timeless modernist masterpiece visually reimagined. This fully illustrated book explores Eliot’s themes of indecision and isolation, as well the overwhelming desire for connection, which is as an often overlooked element of the poem. Printed on beautiful matte paper, this petite gift book is perfect for poetry and art lovers alike.

The Verdict: I am very, very pleased with this month’s Boxwalla Book box. All three books were selections I probably wouldn’t have found for myself but I’m so very glad they’ve made their way in front of my eyes. My favorite was Danticat’s The Dew Breaker, but the others supported it nicely, making for a well-rounded collection to explore.

To Wrap Up:

Can you still get this box if you sign up today? No. Check back here to get the December box when it becomes available!

Value Breakdown: The three books totaled $39.99. At $29.95 for this box, here’s what you are paying approximately per item:

  • Too Loud a Solitude by Bohumil Hrabal: $8.98
  • The Dew Breaker by Edwidge Danticat: $11.98
  • Let Us Go Then: Book 1: The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock by T. S. Eliot, illustrated by Evan Robertson: $8.99

Check out all of our Boxwalla reviews and the Book Subscription Box Directory!

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Written by Christen Russo

Christen Russo

Christen is a smile collector, outdoors enthusiast, and appreciator of soggy French fries. Her favorite subscriptions involve eco-friendly products and clothes, nature supplies, stationery, and coffee. She can be easily won over with a good sheet of stickers.

Posted in Book Subscription Boxes, Subscription Box Reviews| Tags: boxwalla book | 2 comments

Comments (2)

  1. Christen, just wanted you to know that Filmstruck is no more. Their last day of service is November 29.

  2. Bohumil Hrabal is one of my favourite writers, he actually wrote novels/poetic books much better than this one. Worth seeking out all of his other stuff.

    Boxwalla box sounds really interesting; I am thinking about subscribing to their Books one and also the films one if these can be played in a DVD player here in Europe, does anybody know? Thanks.

    Great review.

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