Facebook PixelbeTWEEN the Bookends Tween Review: “Summer Time is Reading Time” July 2023 | My Subscription Addiction
My Subscription Addiction
My Subscription Addiction
Our reviewers research, test, and recommend the best subscriptions and products independently; click to learn more about our editorial guidelines. We may receive commissions on purchases made through links on our site.

beTWEEN the Bookends Tween Review: “Summer Time is Reading Time” July 2023

Becca Peterson
ByBecca PetersonJul 11, 2023 | 0 comments

beTWEEN the Bookends
0 overall rating
0 Ratings | 0 Reviews

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 $42.50 per month + free US shipping ($37.00/mo for the 12-month subscription track) while the Full-Size box is $50 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.)

Hip Hip Hooray for summer vacay! Five weeks in and our summer hasn't included much rest and relaxation, but with day camps coming to a close, the end is in sight. I have a long list of things we have yet to complete, and more reading is definitely one of them! With all of the busyness summer entails, I can definitely see how summer slide happens, but the beTWEEN the Bookends box helps keep that at bay. Featuring new books and a heap of awesome lifestyle goodies, this box always impresses. Read below to find out what this month's awesome theme included!

First Impressions


The contents of this box are packaged neatly in turquoise tissue paper and sealed with a sticker featuring clip art 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 check it out!

Here's What's Inside

Welcome Pamphlet


Each month we receive a pamphlet describing all items included in each box. It is color coordinated and laid out very nicely. Featured on the back is a quote by John Mayer: "Cause a little bit of summer is what the whole year is all about." Fitting with this month's theme, it is a great quote, and one that as a mom and educator is so very true. Also included was a theme for next month's box. By the looks of it, I think we have some sort of "Lights, Camera, Action" theme coming up? Am I close?

Tell No Tales by Sam Maggs and Kendra Wells - Retail Value $12.99


Anne Bonny had it all—her own ship, a pirate crew, and a fearsome reputation—but a new enemy has her on the run and it’ll take all of Anne’s courage to stay afloat. The night before a major heist, Anne has an unsettling dream, and come morning, the robbery is thwarted by Woodes Rogers, a zealot who has sworn to eliminate piracy. With no plan to escape, Anne must persuade her crew to seek the meaning of her dream—or perish. Full of sass, solidarity, and swordplay, Tell No Tales is a graphic novel about belonging, belief, and how far we’re willing to go to protect the ones we love.

This graphic novel is one about a fiery redhead pirate that not only takes charge, but knows what she wants. With a story line about Anne Bonny and Mary Read (two real-life pirates) from the 1600s, this wild story had some historical accounts coupled with explosions and piratey chatter.

Camp Famous by Jennifer Blecher - Retail Value $16.99


Eleven-year-old Abby Herman is beyond excited that her parents are letting her go to summer camp for the first time ever. Maybe camp will be the place she’ll finally find what she’s always wanted: a best friend. But—surprise!—she’s not going to just any summer camp, she’s going to Camp Famous, the one exclusively for famous kids escaping the spotlight.

Desperate to fit in with the pop stars, princesses, and geniuses, Abby creates a fake identity as a famous author. Everything goes as planned: the other girls welcome her, she participates in camp activities, and she even inspires a pop star! But as camp comes to a close, Abby finds herself torn between who she has pretended to be and who she truly is.

Hank is ten and though he went to day camps this year, he is so shy, that an overnight camp is completely off the table in his eyes. Going into fifth grade, this book really did a nice job portraying just how hard those middle school years can be, but was from a girl's perspective, so Hank couldn't identify with a lot of the situations. I on the other hand, loved this book and want to check out Jennifer's other novels!

Darwin's Voyage of Discovery by Jake Williams - Retail Value $17.95


A wonderful celebration of history's most remarkable journey; published to celebrate 160 years of Charles Darwin's ground-breaking text on evolution: On The Origin of Species Step on-board The Beagle and follow the remarkable journey that inspired almost all modern-day knowledge of the natural world. From England to Cape Verde, Brazil to the Galapagos, Tahiti to Australia; discover the wildlife of Charles Darwin - giant sloths, platypus, tarantulas, fireflies and more. As well as gorgeous artwork and fascinating information on the journey, this book also features the equipment used by Darwin and cross-sections of the ship itself. This stunning book comes from the winner of the BDC's New Designer of the Year award, and the author/illustrator behind Really Remarkable Reptiles.

Included this month was a third book that is all about Charles Darwin and his work as a naturalist. As a Christian family, our beliefs don't align with Darwin's theory of evolution, but we always appreciate being educated on nature. With colorful pictures and a well-written biography of Darwin's life, this book is packed with information of all sorts.

Heart-Shaped Popsicle Mold


Hank loves frozen treats, so he was excited to receive this heart shaped popsicle mold. Made from silicone, you pour your desired liquid into the heart mold and insert the included stick. Snapping on the cover to keep the liquid from sloshing around, you can place this in the freezer and have a frozen snack in just a few hours. Deciding to try this with some PRIME, Hank sadly discovered two hours wasn't long enough, and lost his popsicle in the grass. Better luck next time, bud!

Scooter Pen


How adorable is this scooter pen?! Honestly, I have never seen anything like it, and both Hank and I were really happy to see this included. With four little wheels and a set of handle bars, this scooter literally stands up on its own, and can roll. Because the wheels and foot area are the cap, it easily comes off, revealing the tip of a pen. With a push of the handle bars, the pen pops out and you are ready to write. Adorable and fun, Hank has been writing letters like crazy with this thing!

Exclusively Designed Tapestry


Since starting this subscription, I have noticed a push towards more exclusive items, and this is an example of what that might look like. Featuring a library with bright colors and lots of cats, this tapestry has two grommets to hang it from. 3" X 2" in size, this piece is quite large and because of a lack of wall space in Hank's room hasn't yet found a home. Cool in concept, but I would have rather had this made into a pillowcase personally!

Monthly Sticker Pack


Hank always enjoys stickers, so we were excited to see this trio of summer themed ones. Featuring a beach ball, smiley face, and sunglass donning watermelon, the bright cheery vibes of summer really show through. While we haven't used all of these stickers yet, I did write an encouraging message on the watermelon one and stuck it under the brim of his baseball hat for grounding. Did it work? He had two amazing hits and pitched like a boss - I'll call that a win!

Boba Sealife Toy


The last item we received was definitely the favorite of the lifestyle items. Fidgets are so neat, especially when they are filled with mini orbs. This squishy dolphin is sooo cool to touch and squeeze that it is almost addicting. Fun to play catch with, or just hold in your hands, this has summer time written all over it!


beTWEEN the Bookends is one of our favorite subscription boxes, though this month the book picks weren't really our style. Throughout our subscription there have been very few books that we haven't cared for, so it is bound to happen every now and then, and I already have a few of my students in mind for those. Enjoying most of this month's lifestyle items, Hank's favorite was the sea life fidget and scooter pen, though has also utilized the Popsicle mold a couple times already. Overall, this was a decent box and one that features fun and useful items. We can't wait to see what's in store for August!

The beTWEEN the Bookends Gender Neutral box costs me $37.00 per month (on a 12-month subscription track), including shipping. Because the books alone are valued at over $47.84, I find the $37.00/month cost very reasonable as the lifestyle items help shape this box into an entire experience.

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 August box.

What did you think of the BeTWEEN the Bookends Tween Gender Neutral box? 

Starting at $20.00
Subscribe Now

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!

Join the Conversation

Please do not enter your email address in the Name field or in the comment content. Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *. Remember to post with kindness and respect. Comments with offensive language, cruelness to others, etc will not be approved. See our full comment policy here.