OwlCrate is a YA book subscription box. Each month they send you a newly released YA book with some bookish goodies.
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.)
About OwlCrate YA
The Subscription Box: OwlCrate YA
The Cost: $29.99 + shipping
DEAL: Use coupon code WELCOME10 to save 10% off your first month!
The Products: A new YA book and 3-5 book-related goodies.
Ships to: US for $7.99, Canada for $10.59, and International for $19.99
OwlCrate YA "Murder and Mayhem" Review
Each box comes with a card detailing the theme and the items included. This month’s theme is “Murder and Mayhem.”
OwlCrate also included a booklet featuring an interview with the author, a word search and an interview with the designer of one of our exclusive items. There is also some information on their photo challenge at the end.
This edition of the book was signed by the author and features an exclusive cover, which I really do think has a better visual effect than the original cover. This book was really easy for me to get into. I immediately liked the main character, Keralie, a seventeen-year-old girl who makes a living stealing from others. Even though she is a thief, she is very likable and has a quick wit about her and the little tidbits we get about her past are incredibly intriguing, although not as intriguing as the romantic tension that is building between her and dark and handsome stranger, Varin. The two must work together to try to understand why all four of their queens were murdered and it makes for a very exciting tale!
Book Summary from Amazon:
Four dead queens. Three days to catch a killer. Two forbidden romances.
One shocking twist you won’t see coming.
Seventeen-year-old Keralie Corrington may seem harmless, but she’s, in fact, one of Quadara’s most skilled thieves and a liar. Varin, on the other hand, is an honest, upstanding citizen of Quadara’s most enlightened region, Eonia. He runs afoul of Keralie when she steals a package from him, putting his life in danger. When Varin attempts to retrieve the package, he and Keralie both find themselves entangled in a conspiracy that leaves all four of Quadara’s queens dead.
With no other choices and on the run from Keralie’s former employer, the two decide to join forces, endeavoring to discover who has killed the queens and save their own lives in the process. When their reluctant partnership blooms into a tenuous romance, they must overcome their own dark secrets in hopes of a future together that seemed impossible just days before. But first they have to stay alive and untangle the secrets behind the nation’s four dead queens.
An enthralling fast-paced murder mystery where competing agendas collide with deadly consequences, Four Dead Queens heralds the arrival of an exciting new YA talent.
I can't tell if this is on purpose or not, but you can see the pages are a bit uneven at the edges and they are a bit softer than most book pages. Either way, it didn't affect my reading in any way, but I thought it was worth noting!
We also received a letter from the author with this great illustration of the four dead queens. I love that they provide a visual for us!
Exclusive! Four Dead Queens Pencil
To go along with our book, we received this exclusive Four Dead Queens pencil with gold text.
Exclusive! Three Dark Crowns Sticker by Jamila Mehio
I am not familiar with this series, but it sounds like sisters fighting to the death definitely falls under the Murder & Mayhem category! I love the stormy background and the pops of red in this exclusive design.
Exclusive! Game of Thrones Inspired Wooden Bookmark by Ink & Wonder Designs
Is anyone else so excited that the finale of Game of Thrones is almost here? This bookmark is so unique since it is made of a super thin piece of wood and I love that the script of the quote is made from the negative space. This design is so detailed and really beautiful.
Exclusive! This Savage Song Inspired Candle by In the Wick of Time in Malachai (Pomegranate)
This exclusive candle is 100% soy and vegan and was inspired by the monsters of This Savage Song. It looks like subscribers could have received one of three monsters (and scents). It fits in perfectly with our black, white, and red color scheme! This candle smells sweet and fruity, but still very clean. There isn't any sizing information on this, but I think it's about a 4 oz candle.
Exclusive! Nevernight-inspired Travel Mug by Catarina Book Designs
Our next black, white and red item is this exclusive ceramic travel mug inspired by Nevernight. Again, I'm not familiar with this book, but I love this design and the packaging of this is so nice! It's definitely something that could be easily gifted.
I really love this mug, so I won't be gifting it (can you blame me?), and it has been the perfect mug for my morning coffee. The design is really beautiful and features the words "Never Flinch, Never Fear, Never Forget" in stunning red script. The grayscale background really makes the red and green of the flowers pop. I love that it is ceramic, but also has a silicone lid and sleeve that you can leave off or use depending on your preferences. The silicone lid seems to fit pretty well, although not as securely as a twist lid, but I think it would definitely eliminate some of the mess if tipped over and it helps to keep your drink a little warmer for longer. It holds about 12 ounces comfortably.
Exclusive! Canvas Drawstring Backpack Designed by Michelle Gray
This drawstring canvas bag is so well constructed! The bottom has a nice faux leather panel that gives it a bit more of a stylish look. I really like that it has a small pocket on the inside and gold hardware and the canvas is nice and thick. Somehow the design of this bag is the perfect combination of cute and murderous with the small skulls, knives, and bottles of poison. In addition to being cute, it is also very practical and holds a nice amount of stuff. All of our goodies from this month fit easily inside along with my laptop and there was still some room to spare!
Exclusive! Monthly Enamel Pin by Iron & Ink Designs
In every box, you will receive an exclusive collectible enamel pin that is inspired by that month's book. I really love the aged gold look with all four quadrants of Quadara complete with a spinning arrow in the center. So fun and unique!
APRIL THEME SPOILER:
The theme for April will be The Dark Side and our book will be about embracing your inner villain. Each box will include a lightweight scarf designed by Bookmark'd Tattoos. Can't wait!
Verdict: This was another great curation and a fun theme this month! I really enjoyed the book and I loved the red, black, and white color scheme throughout all of our items. It definitely had a very strong murder vibe without being too abrasive! My favorite item is definitely the travel mug, but that bag is such a nice inclusion as well! The exclusive designs this month were all from some really talented artists and even though I wasn't familiar with some of the works that inspired them, it was easy to appreciate the artwork. The cost of this box is $37.98 ($29.99 + $7.99 US shipping) and while I can't estimate the value since everything was exclusive to the box, I definitely feel that the value was there!
To Wrap Up:
Can you still get this box if you sign up today? No, subscriptions are now open for the April box.
Coupon - Use coupon code WELCOME10 to save 10% off your first month!
Value Breakdown: This box costs $29.99 + $7.99 shipping, which means that each of the 8 items in the box has an average cost of $4.63.
Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!
What did you think of OwlCrate?