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: The Gender-Neutral box is $37.00 per month + free US shipping while the Full-Size box is $44 per month. Save with longer subscriptions.
This review is of the beTWEEN the Bookends Tween Gender Neutral 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.)
Winter is upon us, and I have to say I am truly enjoying the early nights in and the blanket snuggles! As our outdoor activities have slowed down, we have really been focusing on family time which has been including a lot of extra reading. I am happy to report that Charlie has made magnificent progress, and we were so excited to receive this month's beTWEEN the Bookends subscription to help us continue making gains, and of course it didn't disappoint. Read below to find out what we received in this month's "Snow Many Books" themed December box.
The contents of this box are packaged neatly in turquoise tissue paper and sealed with a sticker featuring clipart of a boy and girl. The anticipation of seeing what's underneath this tissue paper always has us on the edge of our seats. We just can't wait to dive in!
Here's What's Inside
This month's welcome note shares with us all that is included in this "Snow Many Books" themed box. Not only are two books included, but as are six lifestyle items, including three exclusives. Along with this month's contents, also listed is the theme for next month's box and all of beTWEEN the bookend's social media info. (I can't wait to see what's in store for the "Make Your Own King of Music" January box!).
The Silver Arrow by Lev Grossman - Retail Value $
Dear Uncle Herbert, You've never met me, but I'm your niece Kate, and since it is my birthday tomorrow and you are super-rich could you please send me a present? Kate and her younger brother Tom lead dull, uninteresting lives. And if their dull, uninteresting parents are anything to go by, they don't have much to look forward to. Why can't Kate have thrilling adventures and save the world the way people do in books? Even her 11th birthday is shaping up to be mundane -- that is, until her mysterious and highly irresponsible Uncle Herbert, whom she's never even met before, surprises her with the most unexpected, exhilarating, inappropriate birthday present of all time: a colossal steam locomotive called the Silver Arrow. Kate and Tom's parents want to send it right back where it came from. But Kate and Tom have other ideas -- and so does the Silver Arrow -- and soon they're off to distant lands along magical rail lines in the company of an assortment of exotic animals who, it turns out, can talk. With only curiosity, excitement, their own resourcefulness and the thrill of the unknown to guide them, Kate and Tom are on the adventure of a lifetime . . . and who knows? They just might end up saving the world after all. This thrilling fantasy adventure will not only entertain young readers but inspire them to see the beautiful, exciting, and precious world around them with new eyes.
What a fun story! Easy to read and comprehend, Hank and I really enjoyed reading this extremely creative book together. It truly offers a message for all to hear. If you are a fan of the Chronicles of Narnia or Roald Dahl type books, we highly recommend this novel!
A Boy Called Christmas by Matt Haig - Retail Value $12.99
Eleven-year-old Nikolas–nicknamed "Christmas"–has received only one toy in his life: a doll carved out of a turnip. But he's happy with his turnip doll, because it came from his parents, who love him. Then one day his father goes missing, and Nikolas must travel to the North Pole to save him. Along the way, Nikolas befriends a surly reindeer, bests a troublesome troll, and discovers a hidden world of enchantment in the frozen village of Elfhelm. But the elves of Elfhelm have troubles of their own: Christmas spirit and goodwill are at an all-time low, and Nikolas may be the only person who can fix things-if only he can reach his father before it's too late. . . .
Perfectly suited to the "Snow Many Books" theme, this Christmas book was a truly one of perseverance! Incorporating grief, hardship, and sorrow, this book demonstrates that an impossibility is just a possibility we don’t understand yet. The boys enjoyed this as our night time read and are happy we made this literary discovery!
Washi Tape Trio
Like last month, we received another set of washi tape, this time featuring bookshelf cartoons and books in bubbles. I love this stuff for adding to journals and scrapbooking, but Hank still isn't quite sure of the purpose. This worked out for me, as I was able to add it to my collection!
What a sweet winter themed hanky! With a lovely floral motif, and girl and boy sled scene, this inclusion really does encapsulate all of the December feels. My only question is what does one do with a hanky nowadays? I have made a few of my grandma's old ones into church dolls, but am not quite sure what to do with this, as Hank so sweetly gifted this to me as well. Any ideas?
How cute is this month's keychain? Chubby, fluffy, and fun, Hank's keychain collection is growing, and he is a-okay with that!
Monthly Sticker Pack
After a month hiatus from the monthly sticker pack, we were excited to see it back, especially because everyone loved the reading fox and snoozing penguin sicker. The kids love adding these vinyl stickers to their notebooks, while I opt to stick them to my laptop.
Cookie Press Set
Last Wednesday we had the day off of school and ended up making over 500 Christmas cookies. Every year I purchase pretty glass plates on clearance at Hobby Lobby to create platters and give to our friends and neighbors. That being said, I am cookie'd out at the moment, so we didn't try this press out yet. I'm hoping by next week I'll be back in the mood to try out this funky cookie press and see what kind of results we get because I am loving the scalloped edge on that gingerbread man!
Banana Audio Splitter – Retail Value $10
This was one inclusion I had never heard of before, but makes total sense! As an educator, I've had kids share iPads yet not be able to use headphones - problem solved!! This audio splitter plugs into the headphone port, and 2 sets of headphones can then be plugged in. Genius!!
To me, reading is one of the most important aspects of education. Without the ability to read, school becomes hard very quickly. Working in education, there is a definite advantage noticed in the children that read at home. My oldest son, Hank, has loved reading his entire life and has excelled. My 7-year-old, Charlie, has been the opposite - so beTWEEN the Bookends has been a life saver. Because Charlie tends to easily be persuaded to read if "prizes" are involved, gifting the lifestyle items to him for reaching goals has completely changed his outlook on reading. Because he has advanced so quickly, he now has a lot more reading options and finds the lifestyle items bonuses rather than rewards. This particular box was fun, and fit the month's theme pretty well. The book choices were great (especially for my boys) and they really liked the audio splitter, keychain, stickers, and cookie press. We continue to be thoroughly impressed with this box, and can't wait to see what they have in store for January!
The beTWEEN the Bookends gender neutral box costs $37.00 per month, including shipping. Because the books alone are valued at over $25.00, I find the $37.00/month cost very reasonable as the extra lifestyle items help shape the receival of this box into an entire experience.
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Other Things You Should Know
Can I still get this box if I sign up today? beTWEEN the bookends tends to ship the first week of each month. Order now to receive the January box.
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