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First Impressions: Sweet Reads Box “Unsinkable Greta James” Review

Sweet Reads Box
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Sweet Reads Box is a subscription box for book lovers craving some me time. Each month you will receive a carefully curated box showcasing the bestselling novel of the month. In addition to your novel, you will receive: an item connected to your novel’s storyline/theme/setting, a delicious drink to set the mood, a sweet treat to enjoy while reading, a card explaining our choice of novel regarding how your items connect, and more!

The Cost: $89.99 per month for the monthly box + free US shipping from Canada. Save with longer subscriptions.

This review is of the "Unsinkable Greta James" Sweet Reads Box.

This box was sent to us at no cost to review. (Check out our editorial guidelines to learn more about how we review boxes.)

 

You know that feeling when a notification pops up in your email stating your package has arrived, so you race home to tear into it before you can get into the door? Well, that was me the day this Sweet Reads Box arrived. Mail excites me to pieces anyways, but subscription boxes leave me squealing - especially when they contain books! I've had my eye on this subscription for a while now and am excited to share a first impressions review with you on just what exactly is included. Read below to discover just what kind of subscription this is.

First Impressions

 

Packaged in a sturdy cardboard box layered with bubble wrap and tissue paper, our box travelled from Canada to the USA safe and sound. Featuring bookstack clipart, and fun fonts, I had a feeling this box was going to be a winner from the get-go.

Here's What's Inside

Content Card

 

The content card for this particular theme features an eagle soaring through the sky with a quote by Tori Amos. On the back we were greeted with a list of all of the items included in the "Unsinkable Greta James" box along with a note as to why each item was chosen and designated if the item is from a Canadian company.

Unsinkable Great James by Jennifer E. Smith - Retail Value $19.00 (found here for $22.13)

 

A work of adult fiction, this 303-page book takes us on a journey of inner and outer discovery with Rockstar Greta James and her family. After a terrible tragedy, the James family sets sail amongst Alaska's Inside Passage. Healing old wounds, kindling romance, and finally reconnecting to her true self while sailing through this journey we call life, this is a truly heartwarming and quirky book. I personally found the book easy to read and personable from the get-go. The characters were fun, and the story line was entertaining and enjoyable.

Author's Note

As promised, we received a special note from the author of "Unsinkable Great James", Jennifer E. Smith depicting how this story came to be, as well as some background information to give us a little more insight as to how the character Greta was created. I love this inclusion and am always fascinated by the creative process book writing entails, so I appreciated this special note.

Escape Cruise Lines Margarita Mix - Retail Value $4.99

 

Loving this inclusion!!! Because Ben and Greta had a few too margaritas in the book, we received a customized box of lime-flavored margarita mix to enjoy while reading. With the addition of water, tequila, and triple sec, you are most definitely on your way to a relaxing evening! Because I didn't have any tequila at home, I followed the mocktail recipe and found this mix very tart. If you appreciate a heavy lime flavor, this mix is definitely for you. Mellowed down with the melted ice, I enjoyed the sour flavor, but am interested to see how it would taste with the alcoholic ingredients.

Bear Droppings

 

Created by Walton Wood Farm, these hilariously marketed “bear droppings” taste insanely delicious. Actually being gigantic chocolate covered almonds, these tasty little treats were included as a trip to the gift shop just isn’t complete without an Alaskan-inspired treat. Stating “Helps to navigate anxieties related to unresolved family issues and awkward dating scenarios. May provide emotional comfort while hibernating in grief” on the package, this is a fantastic fit for the theme of this box. Being a bit of a chocolate addict, I couldn’t resist the urge to eat these droppings by the handful. Perfectly sweet and packed with a large nutty crunch, these really were some of the best chocolate covered almonds I have ever tasted.

The Call of the Wild by Jack London - Retail Value $4.81

 

Oh, what a classic! While I hadn't owned a hard copy of this book until now, my kids and I recently listened to the audiobook version of this title. Based on the life of a dog named Buck, this read is an emotional rollercoaster- in all the ways! If you haven’t had a chance to watch the 2020 theatrical version “The Call of the Wild” I recommend checking it out after reading the book.

Totem Spirit Stone

 

Made from reclaimed wood, I received the hummingbird heart “love” totem spirit stone. Featuring art by a Haida artist, (very fitting as the Alaska cruise in the book travels through unceded Haida traditional territory) this piece is beautifully decorated and looks lovely on my desk at school, keeping me in check on the extra hard days.

Vintage Inside Passage Bookmark

 

Made by Woodly, this unique wooden bookmark has a map of the Alaskan Inside Passage from 1893. Initially I had this gem marking the chapter in my book, but my 9-year-old son practically begged me for this, as he is currently reading a Lucky Luke book that is based in Alaska. Of course, I gave in - let there be bent pages no more!!!

Greta James Solid Perfume

 

The last item we received was a tin of Greta James solid perfume, which was made exclusively for Sweet Reads. Created as the ideal signature fragrance for an indie rockstar (the main character of the book), this perfume has a very natural scent, reminding me a bit of patchouli oil with notes of grapefruit and rosemary. Preferring spray perfume, I don’t have much experience with this solid bar type, but found this particular scent to wear well and last a good amount of time. Overall, a fun inclusion, and one that I found fitting the theme and curation well.

Verdict

As a lover of books, I was genuinely excited to see how this subscription compared to other options, and I have to say I was thoroughly impressed. The overall curation and attention to detail this box offers are second to none. Not only did I love the book (and the inclusion of a classic) but I found all of the lifestyle items to be high quality, tying well to the theme, and useful. Because a well-written book can almost take you to another realm, it was really extraordinary to have items specific to this book that helped keep the experience alive even after the story ended. I’m very satisfied with my items and can’t wait to check out what next month’s theme might be.

The Sweet Reads Box is $89.99 a month + free shipping from Canada to the United States. That is a substantial chunk of money. Because a lot of the items in this box are custom made for Sweet Reads, I was unable to locate retail prices, but we did receive 7 items, equaling about $12.80 a piece. While there is absolutely no way I would pay that much for an item such as the wooden bookmark, I do have to say part of this box is the experience, which to some can make it worth it.

Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!

Other Things You Should Know

Can I still get this box if I sign up today? Yes. This box is currently available in the "shop Buy Now boxes" section of the Sweet Reads box website. Monthly orders will ship around the 5th of the month.

What did you think of the Sweet Reads "Unsinkable Greta James" box? 

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"Sweet Reads Box is a subscription box for book lovers craving some me time. Each month you will receive a carefully curated box showcasing the bestselling novel of the month.In addition to your novel you will receive: an item connected to your novel’s storyline/theme/setting, a delicious drink t... read more.

Becca Peterson
Becca Peterson
While I am taking a time-out from being a Clinical Laboratory Scientist, I am currently staying at home with my 2 sweet boys! My first subscription was Julep thanks to happening upon the MSA website, and it all went downhill from there! I have subscribed to Ipsy, Boxycharm, Degustabox, Julep, Graze, Bluum, Walmart, and more because I love a good surprise! I truly am a subscription addict!

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10 comments

CDG

Might want to keep an eye on their home site. They had a special in early May; this box at full price, plus another box (choice of one of two) free. So, $45/box.

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Margaret

This is such a cute idea and lovely curation but all I can think of is how many books I could buy for $90, lol.

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vb

$90 is pretty tough for many but it definitely is a well thought out and nicely curated box.

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Becca

Very true VB, $90 is a big chunk of change on a monthly scale! I’d be more apt to purchase a past box as a gift for my mom, or one of the limited-edition boxes as a special treat.

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Danielle

Same comment as everyone else — nice curation, but $90?!?!

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Nicole

Yikes. $90 for a book box. Think I’ll stick to my local library.

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rach

That is a nice box, I love both books and the other companion items make it a nice experience. However I would never pay $90/month for it, not even close. I’ve subscribed to several other book related subscription boxes with similar content for less than half that price.

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Becca

Thanks for commenting, Rach! What are your other favorite book sub boxes? I see Sweet Reads offers limited edition boxes along with the monthly boxes which would be fun to check out. While monthly would get too expensive, my mom would love something like this for a Mother’s Day gift!

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Becca

Thanks for sharing Rach! I just checked out the Beauty and a Book sub – bummed it is sold out right now! Unplugged Book box also looks fun – did you order the limited edition Bed and Breakfast box? That looks intriguing!! I just might have to check it out!

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RACH

Some of the other book box subscriptions I’ve either subscribed to or considered subscribing to are Unplugged Book Box, Authentic Books, Beauty and a Book, Peace and Pages, and Once Upon a Book Club, all of which are around the $40/month price point and somewhat similar to this Sweet Reads box (a book and companion items).

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