beTWEEN the Bookends is the first monthly book and lifestyle box created for kids by a teen herself! Boxes follow a monthly theme and contain age-appropriate books and lifestyle items that have been read and hand tested by Jillian, the 14-year-old creator. Full size boxes contain 2-3 books and 6-8 lifestyle items, while mini boxes include 1 book and 3-5 lifestyle items. The new gender-neutral boxes will contain the same 2-3 books in the full boxes but will have only 3-5 gender neutral lifestyle items.
The Cost: $50.00 per month for the full-size box + free US shipping. Save with longer subscriptions.
Note: beTWEEN the Bookends is launching a new website and raising prices for new customers on June 1. Existing customers will continue to get the current rate.
This review is of the beTWEEN the Bookends Early Reader Full Size 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.)
Discovering beTWEEN the Bookends was one of my highlights this spring, as they combine reading with fun. This has helped to engage my 7-year-old son that sometimes needs to be coaxed to read. Not only does this subscription offer age-appropriate items, but they also offer gender neutral versions as well. I have continuously been impressed with not only the theme, but the curation of the box as well. While this is a review of the full-size box, which does contain some extra girly items, that just means I get to snag those, or we give them to my niece, spreading the joy all around. After adoring the "Stretching into Summer" box we received last month, we couldn't wait to dive in and see what goodies this box contained. Read below to find out what we discovered.
As the full-size box is curated with girls in mind, this version comes wrapped in bright pink tissue paper featuring a pigtail-donning cartoon sticker. So cute!
Here's What's Inside
This month's welcome note includes the theme title "Reading Beneath the Stars" the included book titles, and all of the extra goodies, designating if they are from small shops or not. Along with this month's contents, also listed is the theme for next month's box, and the beTWEEN the Bookends social media info.
Harper and the Circus of Dreams by Cerrie Burnell - Retail Value $5.99 (found here for $12.99)
Late one evening as the stars begin to twinkle, Harper and her friends are flying on the scarlet umbrella when they see a girl running on air, skipping along a tightrope. She leads them to the Circus of Dreams, suspended in the air by hot air balloons. There, they meet the mermaid acrobat, the spectacular circus baker, the mysterious fortune teller and the acrobatics troupe, all more spectacular than one could dream. But as they learn more about the Circus of Dreams, Harper learns a secret about her past that is more than magic. . . .
Don't tell Charlie I told you, but the girl he has a crush on in school is named Harper. That being said, as soon as he read the title of this month's book his cheeks flushed red, and he wanted to start reading it right away. At 7, Charlie is a pretty good reader, but the mere length of this book was discouraging to him, so we started working on it together. Also, this book actually contains an extra story called 'Harper and the Sea of Secrets" so it's not as long as it looks. The story itself is quite interesting, and though we aren't quite finished with it yet, Charlie has enjoyed the characters and just how creative and magical it is.
Unicorn Princesses the Moonbeams by Emily Bliss - Retail Value $5.99
Welcome to an enchanted land ruled by unicorn princesses! Cressida Jenkins, a unicorn-obsessed girl who is sure that unicorns are real, is invited to visit, and readers will be thrilled to journey to the Rainbow Realm along with her! In each story, Cressida is called to help a unicorn princess and her sisters in a magical adventure. Princess Sunbeam and Princess Moon have started a show choir with the creatures who live in the Rainbow Realm. They're so excited about their first performance, and it wouldn't be complete without their human friend Cressida in the audience. But Ernest the wizard lizard cast an errant spell that could ruin everything. Can Cressida and her unicorn friends find a way for the show to go on?
As a young girl, this glittery unicorn book would have been right up my alley to read, but for Charlie, he wasn't convinced. That is until we actually started reading and discovered the wizard-lizard, then he thought it was worth the read. Enjoying the illustrations and short chapters, there isn't much cooler in the world than reading a chapter book in the 1st grade!
A Scents of Grace - Moon Bath Bomb
Charlie's favorite extra item this month was of course the bath bomb. Large in size, with metallics and glitter, this round moon and star bomb not only smells delicious but fizzed like crazy! From an online small shop, these bath bombs are well made and fun to use. Charlie always says a little prayer to get a bath bomb before he opens this box each month, and so far, he hasn't been let down!
Enamel Moon Pin - Designed by Karen Thaco
Like the Tween box, the Early Reader box also received the moon and cloud shaped enamel pin. Made exclusively for beTWEEN the bookends, this cartoon guy is adorable, and fits with our monthly theme perfectly. Not being sure where to place his pin, he decided to add it to his Bookmobile bag, to spice it up for the next library visit.
Hair Clip Set
How cute are these little rainbow, lollipop, and cloud hairclips?! Charlie did try these out in his hair, but they just didn't suit his hatchet-wielding, muddy-legged self, so he said I could have them. At 34, I do love these hair clips, but decided they may be suited better for my 3-year-old cousin. Charlie gave them to her yesterday and boy did she squeal in delight!
Unicorn Pop-It Bag
Like I have mentioned before, Charlie is obsessed with Pop-Its. The rainbow one we received in March has a permanent home in my purse and is taken out almost daily. This unicorn Pop-It bag has totally taken it next level! With a lanyard type strap that detaches in needed, this squishy bag is adorably detailed and has 12 poppers. We recently went to the local County Fair and because of its lightness and cuteness, we stored our fair money in it, which also gave us something to do when waiting in those darn long lines.
Washi Tape Set
Dr. Seuss is one of our faves, so receiving anything Cat in the Hat is exciting for us. In this box were two rolls of Dr. Seuss washi tape. With multi-uses, this tape is great for crafts and decor. Charlie decided he is going to use his to decorate his new take home folder for school, and if he has any left, he wants to wrap a couple of pencils.
Though we gave away the rainbow hair clips, I just couldn't give up this sequin star headband. Working as a lab scientist, I was in charge of drawing blood from ICU and cardiac patients on the 4 a.m. shift, which was miserable for patients. I am generally a pretty cheery person but decided to go the extra mile and add ridiculous hair accessories to make the little old people smile, and you wouldn't believe how well it worked! One of my co-workers mentioned I would have to stop after I turned 27 because that was just getting too old. By that time, I was addicted, and at 34, I still rock a headband almost every single day. I have found life is too short to care about what others think, if it makes you happy, wear it! So, to conclude, I love this star headband and wore it to my son's baseball game on Tuesday!
Last but not least, we received a fuzzy star keychain. As we know Charlie is also a collector of keychains and loves adding them to his backpack. Because this one was a little larger, he decided to add it to the zipper of his suitcase and fuzzed his nose on it all the way to my mom's.
Snuggled in his jammies and reading his new book, summer vacation can stay for like 6 more months please!
Fun for both mom and son, the full-size beTWEEN the bookends Early Reader box pulls out all of the stops. As a mother and educator, I can say that I really appreciate the thoughtfulness that goes into the curation of this box, and how well the lifestyle items coordinate with the book choices. Using the lifestyle items as incentives, Charlie read 5 chapters to earn his bath bomb. We found this month's items to all be high-quality, functional, and fun, for both me and my kids. I continue to be impressed with the fun themes this box offers and am already looking forward to next month. What do you think the "Summer Reading"" box will include?
The beTWEEN the bookends Early Reader Full-Sized box costs $50.00 per month, including shipping. Because most items were small shop created specifically for this box, I wasn't able to calculate an accurate value estimate, but dividing it by the items we received equals to about $5.55 a piece. Because of the thoughtful curation, fun theme, and enjoyable products, I feel the $50.00 price range is definitely fair for the quality of this box and the number of items.
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Other Things You Should Know
What did you think of the beTWEEN the bookends full-sized box?