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beTWEEN the Bookends Tween Review: “Different Is Beautiful” February 2024

Becca Peterson
ByBecca PetersonFeb 13, 2024 | 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 16-year-old creator. Full-sized 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 $45 per month + free US shipping ($40.00/mo for the 12-month subscription track) while the full-sized box is $55 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.)

February is here, and our usual frigid temps have gone by the wayside! With our daytime highs hitting the upper-40s, I am missing the snow and all the fun snow-related activities it brings. With snowmobiling and ice fishing out of the question, this month's beTWEEN the Bookends came at the perfect time. Featuring new books and a heap of awesome lifestyle goodies, this box always impresses. Read below to find out what this month's fun 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 Maya Angelou - "You can't use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have." Also included is a hint about next month's theme - fairy tales, anyone?

The Exceptional Maggie Chowder by Renee Beauregard Lute - Retail Value $16.99


Twelve-year-old aspiring forest ranger Maggie Chowder wants to be just like her favorite comic superhero, the Exceptional Eagirl. So when her dad loses his job and her family moves from a house to a small apartment, Maggie is determined to make the most of her new circumstances. But it's not always easy to be strong like Eagirl when her best friend LaTanya gets to move into a big house and get a puppy because her dad has been recruited to coach for the Seattle Seahawks. It's especially not easy when nitpicky, comic-book-hating Grandma Barrel comes to stay.

As an eleven year old boy, I wasn't sure what Hank would think of this book based on the cover, but soon came to find out that he enjoyed it very much. With a fast paced story line including comic shorts, talk of forest rangers, and even a Seattle Seahawks coach, this book is definitely for boys and girls alike. This book captures life's ups and downs and is a great adventure read. While not AR quizzable, this book was filled with wit and humor, and taught us a few lessons along the way.

Lily's Promise by Kathryn Erskine - Retail Value $7.99


Shy, eleven-year-old Lily made her dad an important promise before he passed away—that she would “Strive for Five” and speak her mind at least five times. But speaking up one time, let alone five, is easier said than done. It’ll be even harder now that Lily must attend public school for the first time. Fortunately, she meets curling-obsessed Hobart and quiet Dunya at the beginning of sixth grade. Their kindness gives Lily hope that life without Dad might just be bearable. But when Lily and her friends are bullied by Ryan and his mean clique, she quickly discovers the true meaning of friendship and speaking out. Despite the anxiety she feels, Lily knows she needs to stand up for herself and others. And she’ll use the tools her dad gave her to not only keep her final promise but bring her whole school together.

What an intriguing book! Hank and I read this one together, and it was not only captivating, but very helpful at this stage in my 11-year-old son's life. Not only does this book touch on bullying, but other life challenges as well. Going through the chapters, the story is convened in an entertaining way, but also includes chapters marked "Libro" which come from the book itself. Rather unusual, but fun, these chapters offer questions for readers to think about before moving onto the next chapter, which is really neat. Worth 7 AR points, this book was a great read, and helped my son with a bullying situation he has going on, making it 100% worth the read.

Heart Paperclip Set


Hank just mentioned to me the other day that Valentine's Day is fast approaching and we haven't even finished putting our Christmas decorations away. Because we don't have much for Valentine's decor, we were excited to receive these tiny heart paperclips. Great for sprucing up bulletin boards and clipping them on photos and papers, these add some festivity to the daily grind. Contained in a small purple cinch sack, I think I was more excited to receive these than Hank was, but he did pick out the blue and black ones to keep some of his homework together.

Monthly Sticker Pack


Again, with Valentine's Day in the air, this month's sticker theme focused on pink hearts. While Hank's favorite color is pink, the hearts were a little over the top for him, and he set them aside unsure of what to do with them. Fast forward two days and they found themselves a home on Valentine's envelopes for my mom and dad! Perfect!

Mini Wall Hanging

What a wonderful quote. "The sky is full of stars and there's room for them all to shine" is such an inspiration. With so many people only looking out for themselves, it is refreshing to be reminded that we all matter and we should all do our best to love and respect one another. Lasered onto a thin wood panel, the ribbon hanger is perfect to drape over a door knob, or hang on a small nail.

You-niquely You! Fill in Journal - Retail Value $12.99


This illustrated journal is packed full of fun activities to do alone or with your BFF. Plus there’s plenty of space and tips for writing and illustrating your own stories. It’s where you can keep your secrets, explore your dreams and wishes, and be as imaginative (and silly!) as you want to be.

Hank loves writing and journaling, but this book wasn't his style. Geared more towards girls, this journal is really fun for the right audience. With fun journaling prompts, and blank pages to go in your own direction, I have the perfect student in mind that will utilize this journal to the max. From time to time there is an item included that doesn't resonate with Hank, but that's okay because it opens up an opportunity for us to share with others, which is important too.

Note Holder Stand


The last item we received was this note stand. Featuring a small wooden base and metal heart stand, you can put notes and pictures in between the wires to hold them upright. Cute in design, this worked great to add a family picture to Hank's nightstand. Simplistic in design, and fitting with this month's theme, we really liked this inclusion.


beTWEEN the Bookends is one of our favorite subscription boxes of all time, and though this month's items had a bit of a Valentine's Day focus, made for some great reads and great gifts. Typically Hank is wowed by this Gender Neutral box, and while he loved the two books and note holder stand, the other items were a little too girly for him. This is rare, and that being said, we don't expect every box to hit spot on for us. When it doesn't (which seriously is rare), we are given the opportunity to share the extra items with kids at school, which is amazing. Overall, I thought this box was curated nicely, though would like to see a little more neutrality in the next box. We can't wait to see what's in store for March!

The beTWEEN the Bookends Gender Neutral box costs $40.00 per month (on a 12-month subscription track), including shipping. Because the books alone are valued at over $37.97, I find the $40.00/month cost extremely 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 March box.

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