Little Feminist Book Club is a monthly book subscription box for kids ages newborn to nine years old. Each month you will receive one to two books to help diversify your bookshelf. Plus, you will also receive hands-on activities and tools to help your book come to life. Subscriptions are offered for ages 0-2, 2-4, 4-7, and 7-9. From Little Feminist:
Only 31% of children's books feature a female character, and only 13% feature a person of color.
This children's book subscription sends books that highlight lesser-represented characters and teaches important life lessons with beauty and nuance.
This review is of the Book Club for ages 2-4 years.
This box was sent to us at no cost to review. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
About Little Feminist Book Club
The Subscription Box: Little Feminist Book Club
The Cost: $22.95 per month + $2.95 shipping. Save with longer subscriptions.
The Products: At least one book (sometimes more) and hands-on activities and tools to help bring your book to life.
Ships to: The U.S. for $2.95. Shipping costs may vary for international orders.
Little Feminist Book Club Ages 2-4 January 2021 Review
Little Feminist recently made a change to their age range offerings, which included the addition of a new club for children ages 2-4. On their website it says that some months they'll send a single picture book; others, they'll send two board books. This month my two-and-a-half-year-old daughter, Lorelai, received one picture book.
The book arrived in a slim cardboard box, with this sheet of cardstock that's printed with the January welcome note and two activities. In the note, it's mentioned that author Grace Lin pulls from her Taiwanese roots to tell a story inspired by the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival. My family wasn't familiar with this East- and Southeast-Asian tradition, but a quick search showed it's a holiday centered around appreciating the moon when it's at its brightest. It's celebrated with a large meal, including mooncakes. Oh my gosh, Google "mooncakes" right now and just let your mouth water. Folks also light lanterns, offer gifts to the moon, and more. Typically the Moon Festival is celebrated in September or October, but of course, this book is meant to be enjoyed at any time, and its story isn't so specific as to seem tied to a particular season.
The activities included this month are two DIYs for making moon crafts. One is a simple crinkled foil moon and the other is a textured paint moon. Both require adult supervision and assistance, but I like that two tiers of involvement are offered—I wouldn't think twice about mixing flour and paint for a craft with my daughter, but to my husband that sounds like a nightmarish mess waiting to happen, so he'd likely go for the foil option.
This story begins with a young girl and her mother pulling a mooncake out of the oven to cool—but in this metaphorical world, the mooncake is the actual moon. The girl, named Little Star—a character that can easily be interpreted to represent an actual star—gets ready for bed and goes to sleep. Page by page, Little Star wakes up in the middle of the night and secretly tiptoes over to take small nibbles of the big mooncake. By the end of the book, she has eaten the entire moon up, and the mother lovingly busts her, then says, "let's make another," which they do together.
My husband was the first to read this book to our daughter, and after the first page he looked up at me and said, "this is an instant classic." He was right—not only are the understated illustrations breathtaking and the storyline both affectionate and fun for us adults, but Lorelai also took to it immediately. She quickly caught onto the way Little Star sneaks over to the mooncake each night, and gleefully picked up on the question-and-answer format of some of the text within a few read-throughs. As a parent, I love that this children's book gently introduces the concept of the moon's phases through story. Lorelai has been noticing the moon glowing in the sky for a few months now, and I've had it on my mental to-do list to research an age-appropriate way to help her understand why sometimes it's not as big or noticeable as it was a few weeks prior. Story, duhh! This book is not a scientifically accurate lesson in lunar astronomy by any means, but it has added some depth to her awareness of the moon. (I also recently received a lunar calendar in my Earthlove box, which we have displayed in our kitchen so we can point to dates when the moon will start "growing" again!)
Discussion Question Cards
Little Feminist always includes discussion questions in their monthly shipments, printed in bookmark form. This month there are questions tied to specific pages of the book that was sent, to open up a conversation while reading, as well as more general questions to ask later. An example of an in-book question is, "After reading pg. 3 '...snuggled into bed': What do you do before you go to bed?" This question came at great timing for us, as we're in the midst of toilet training Lorelai, and she knows that "teeth, toilet, change" are the 3 things she does before getting into bed. An after-reading question example from this month is, "What do you like to make with your family?" This one was a little abstract for her, and like last month, we asked her the questions as-written first to see how she'd do, but ultimately ended up re-wording them with more specificity to help her understand. She had fun thinking up answers, though!
Verdict: While we are still loving last month's offering from Little Feminist Book Club, this month was even more of a hit! Our daughter has requested we read A Big Mooncake for Little Star together over and over multiple times throughout the day, every day since it arrived—a testament to how sweet and compelling it is. This book is a welcome addition in our family for a number of reasons: the storyline and illustrations are gorgeous and open to multiple interpretations, the relationship between the mother and daughter is very sweet and similar to how we parent, the introduction to moon phases feels very age-appropriate, and the literary representation of another culture & race is important.
Value-wise, this subscription costs $25.90 ($22.95 per month + $2.95 shipping). This book, purchased full-price, costs $18.99. On Amazon, it costs $11.59. Depending on which route you go, that's a $6.91-$14.31 difference. Were I to buy this book outside the subscription, I would likely visit my local bookstore, which means I'd be paying the full $18.99—that means I'd be paying $6.91 for the two activity ideas, the discussion questions, and the convenience & safety of not having to leave my home. On top of it, LFBC's introductory note draws my attention to elements of the books they send that I may not have considered on my own. While the value of this month's box is similar to last month's, it's feeling more worth it to me this time around. While in my perfect world I'd love to go browse a local bookstore every month, that just isn't realistic for me right now, so LFBC is doing it for me, and I really appreciate what they provide.
To Wrap Up:
Can you still get this box if you sign up today? You'll either receive this box or the February box. From Little Feminist:
Once you purchase a book subscription your first box will be shipped within a week. From then on, your book box will be sent the first week of every month.
Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!
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