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beTWEEN the Bookends Early Reader Review: “Reading in a Digital World” June 2023

Becca Peterson
ByBecca PetersonJun 15, 2023 | 0 comments

beTWEEN the Bookends
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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.

This review is of the beTWEEN the Bookends Early Reader Full Size box. 

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

It's summer vacay people, and I am beyond excited! Sleeping in and evening baseball, here we come! While the boys and I are pumped up for our time to recharge and relax, I am all about keeping the "summer slide" at bay and will do anything in my power to keep that from happening. That being said, "beTWEEN the Bookends" box is one of the components I like to utilize in my summer curriculum. Awesome new books and delightful bookish goodies? Count us in! Read below to see what we discovered in the June box.

First Impressions


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. Cute!

Here's What's Inside

Welcome Pamphlet


To start off the box, we go through the included pamphlet. Describing the month's theme and the contents of every Between the Bookends version, this little book lets us know exactly what the box contains, along with a bookish quote, social media info, and a hint about next month's theme. "Man is still the most extraordinary computer of all" - John F. Kennedy

Galaxy Zack Cosmic Blackout by Ray O'Ryan - Retail Value $5.99


Zack loves everything about his new planet, Nebulon. There’s Ira, his Indoor Robotic Assistant, who makes him delicious food every day. There’s Zack’s hyperphone for playing games with friends. Even his desk at school is pretty grape. But Zack wakes up one morning to discover that everything awesome about his new planet is out of order. Nebulon has fallen into a complete cosmic blackout. Without power, how will Zack and his friends ever get through the day?

Charlie loved this book. It was easy for him to read and the large print, illustrations, and variation between dark and light pages kept it exciting. He also enjoyed the hilarious Nebulon jargon - "gorblesnoozer" hahaha! This cute story turns into disaster when Nebulon falls into a cosmic blackout and Charlie loved every second of it. To turn this book into a little something extra, we also found a reading comprehensive guide for this exact story on Teachers Pay Teachers. Winning! Being the 16th book in the series, Charlie is curious about other books about Galaxy Zack, and has inquired about them through the bookmobile.

Guinea Pigs Online by Jennifer Gray and Amanda Swift - Retail Value $6.99


In this hilarious adventure for elementary school readers, a team of lovable, fuzzy guinea pigs go online to solve mysteries. "A really amusing story, with irresistible characters, that will delight readers age 5+, in a chunky format that is just right for small hands," says Parents in Touch. Furry Towers promises the best food and fabulous facilities for guinea pigs--Fuzzy and Coco are so excited! But when they arrive, the friends find themselves in a smelly old hutch with only moldy lettuce to eat. Coco is not impressed! And it soon becomes clear that something terribly sinister is going on at Furry Towers--can the friends save the day again?

Charlie loves silly stories, so this guinea pig adventure suited him very well. Well written, and darn right funny, we hammed it up a bit with our Coco and Fuzzy voices, creating a giggly reading adventure. This too is part of a series, so Charlie is on the lookout for the other 5 Guinea Pigs Online books to complete his set.

Exclusively Designed Book/Tablet Sleeve


Charlie loves toting his books around, but ends up bending the cover, spilling on the pages, or losing it in his backpack. That all stops with this thick, durable, book sleeve. With a brightly colored pirate and reading illustrations, this sleeve can fit books or tablets, which makes it fit into this digital book theme very well. We don't own a tablet, so books it is! While protecting our current book, this sleeve also looks super cool and is easy to lug around. A great inclusion!

Monthly Sticker Pack


Charlie is all about stickers, but thought these were a little too "mature" for his 8-year-old silly self, so he passed them on to me. With cute quotes and fun clip art, these aren't quite as quirky as past month's stickers, but will be a great addition to my morning journal that can always use a colorful pick me up.

Custom Notebook


Both of my kids love to write, and I am so thankful for that! Because of technology, I have witnessed a decline in handwriting over the years and am all about making my kids journal daily. I am always on the lookout for smaller journals to keep them engaged, and this pretty Bookends one was perfect for the start of summer and our daily writing. Because this journal is smaller than a regular sized notebook, it is less daunting to fill, and is easy to tote around. Perfect!

Paperclip Set


The next item we received was this set of airplane paperclips. This item was a little lost on Charlie as he doesn't typically use paperclips. When he was about to give them to me, I let him try one out as a bookmark, and he thought that was really neat. Dual purpose - I like it!

Bath Bomb from "Cosmetics for College"


If you have read past reviews, you know that Charlie is obsessed with bath bombs, so this was an absolutely perfect inclusion. With a fruity aroma, this pink puck fizzed in the tub and left Charlie grinning ear to ear. Created by a small shop, this is one inclusion we'd like to see in every box!

Body Butter


While Charlie loves bath bombs, if there is one thing he hates, it's lotion, even if it does smell like raspberry. Very potent, this creamy lotion is quite hydrating and smells extremely fruity. Not something I would typically use, I did get a foot massage out of the deal, and the house smells very raspberryeeeee!

Pop-it Eraser


The last item we received was this pizza slice eraser pop-it. With two pop-able pepperonis, this was a fun dual purpose item. Charlie loved playing with it while we took turns reading, but he also used it to erase a few mistakes in his journaling page. These quirky unconventional items are really where it's at for us, and he is hoping there will be a bit left by the time he returns to school!


In case you have read my previous reviews and were curious, Charlie did make it to "The End of the Year Reading Party" and acquired the most AR points in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grade. For that, the school took the students that surpassed these goals bowling! Helping him to achieve this impressive goal was the beTWEEN the Bookends Early Reader box. Honestly, at the beginning of the year Charlie was struggling to read and almost qualified for Title services. Suddenly, he figured it out and blasted through more books than I can count! This box is always a surprise, and one that keeps my kids newfound love of reading going strong. Through this subscription we have discovered new authors and brands that we otherwise would have probably missed. If you have a kid that loves reading, or is struggling to find books they enjoy, we highly suggest this box, as it really makes reading fun.

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.

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? beTWEEN the Bookends tends to ship the first week of each month. Order now to receive the July box.

What did you think of the beTWEEN the Bookends full-sized box? 

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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-... read more.

Becca Peterson
Becca Peterson

I am a wild and crazy mom of 2 boys and work in the public education system as an Indigenous Support Advocate. I love all things outdoors, beauty, crafts, and food. Living the simple life in the country, we spend a lot of time hiking, camping, fishing, and hunting. Oh, and I absolutely adore my high school sweetheart aka my husband of almost 17 years!

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