Owlcrate Unboxing – March 2020

Hello everyone! I hope that you are all keeping well. It’s been a pretty crazy month but it’s time for another Owlcrate unboxing!

In case this is the first of my unboxings that you have had the pleasure of reading, let’s talk a little about what they are for. Owlcrate is a monthly mystery box for fans of Young Adult novels. Each box costs around £38 to ship the the United Kingdom and is guaranteed to contain 3-5 collectables, all selected around a different monthly theme. On top of this, the box is contains a newly released hardback, usually signed and with an exclusive cover.

Owlcrates tend to sell out incredibly quickly, though you are guaranteed to receive each box as long as you have an active subscription. This subscription can be cancelled at any time, though I would recommend only doing so if you are sure. I made the mistake of cancelling last year and it took me a couple of months to get it back again!

As you might be able to tell from the striking blue box, this month’s box was a bit of a special one as it’s Owlcrate’s 5th Anniversary! The theme this time around was ‘Music of the Night’ and scroll on to see what exciting things were contained with in.

Be warned – massive spoilers lie below for anyone who has not yet received their crate…

Please excuse the mess in these photos. My sewing desk has been converted to a home work station for the time being and so I don’t have as much space as usual. In addition for this, Owlcrate seemed to have included more packing paper than ever before and Victor was being his usual belligerent self, none of which helped with my unboxing photography. Such is life…

Anyhow, let’s take a look at the first item!

The first item out of the box was a mysterious tube of mystery that stands slightly taller than a stuffed crocodile. The tube contained what is possibly my favourite item in this crate – a beautiful poster print based around the masquerade scene from The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux. Not only does this item perfectly match the theme of the crate, but the art by Anne Lambelet is utterly stunning! I will certainly be getting this framed and displayed as soon as the lockdown is over!

The second item was a new candle. Being the sad human being that I am, I always get very excited about Owlcrate’s candles… This was was made by Flick the Wick and is inspired by the Goblin Grove from Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones. Although I haven’t read this novel and so am not sure how well this candle fits the crate theme, this is not going to stop me from enjoying this item. The candle’s scent is winter berry, peach, yuzu, pear and fresh air, and it smells beautiful. I can’t wait to set this baby on fire!

The next item was an Owlcrate exclusive one, and is probably the most interesting thing in the box. It is a tiny wireless speaker featuring a design based on the Owlcrate mascot. While it’s not really a bookish item, it does at least fit the musical theme on this crate. Every month, Owlcrate does publish a bookish playlist and I suppose that this item could also be used to enjoy any podcasts or audio books that tickle your fancy!

I did give this speaker a little test to see how it performed and was pleasantly surprised. It easily synced into my smartphone (as Samsung Galaxy S9) and the sound quality was pretty clear for such a small speaker.

The next item was another little tub. This one contained a Twilight themed lip scrub called Bella’s Lullaby. The scrub was made by the Fairytale Bath Company and, I must admit, I have no idea what this has to do with the musical theme of this crate. However, the item is great. It left my lips feeling really soft and it is mint chocolate flavour (although the tub does specifically tell me not to eat it!). I’ve never used a lip scrub before but I am very impressed by this one!

The next item is another Owlcrate exclusive pair of socks. Yay! As I have noted before, I do love a good pair of socks. While I do prefer for my footwear to be a bit more brightly coloured, I do like the design of this pair and they are made of nice soft material. This special item was included in the crate as a 5th Anniversary gift, and I am certainly going to get plenty of use out of it.

The next item is another one that does not really fit the theme at all. It is a set of ten book plates, each featuring a lovely design that was inspired by Harry Potter. The art is by @veresknastaia_art and is beautiful, but has nothing to do with music in any way. I’m not entirely sure I will use this item but I’m sure that any Hedwig fans would certainly enjoy jazzing up their books a little.

At least the final item in the crate really does fit the theme. It’s a woodcarving by Emilee Rudd that was clearly inspired by V.E. Schwab’s Monsters of Verity duology. While I’m not really a fan of this series, this item is absolutely gorgeous and is certainly something that I plan to display in my study. The design is really eye-catching and is truly a work of art.

And then, there is the pin badge. This month’s badge is impressively huge and was designed by Fable and Black. As always, the pin’s design was inspired by this month’s read. We’ve got two trees and a beautiful selection of birds and musical notes. But what could the book possibly be…

…Before we find out, let’s just take a little look at the paper goods that were included in this month’s crate. As always, there is the monthly magazine and a little leaflet that explains what all the items in the crate are for. There is also a second flyer that features a note from this month’s featured author. This month, it’s Marie Lu. Which would mean that our March read is…

…The Kingdom of Back. I must admit, I did actually guess what this month’s book was going to be as I felt that Owlcrate gave a little too much away in their hints. The book does really fit this month’s theme, as it is a historical fantasy based around Mozart’s sister. While I probably wouldn’t have chosen to read this one, I must admit that I am curious as Lu is very highly regarded author and I have never read any of her earlier work.

The book is also especially stunning this month, as it has sprayed silver edges and a lovely embossed tree design beneath its dust cover, making it a really nice addition to my collection. The cover is also subtly different to the published version, which is a much darker shade of blue. It is a very pretty thing and I am looking forward to sinking my teeth into it!

So, all in all, this wasn’t my favourite crate. While I do really like like the art print, wood carving and socks in particular, I don’t think that many items this time around really matched the musical theme. Hopefully, next month’s crate will be a little more focused.

Check back at the end of the month to find out what I thought of the April crate. It’s theme is going to be ‘Full Moon Magic’…

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Kristi
    Apr 02, 2020 @ 18:21:25

    If it helps, it looks like the items you weren’t sure fit did match the musical theme, even if tenuously. The candle is inspired by a book called Wintersong, the lip balm is called Bella’s Lullaby, and the book plates have musical notes on them (though I don’t know why). I’ve seen unboxing posts from various people of Owlcrates in the past, and it does seem like they stretched quite a bit for the theme this time.

    Reply

    • Arkham Reviews
      Apr 02, 2020 @ 18:25:25

      My sister advises that ‘Bella’s Lullaby’ is the name of the song that Edward composes for Bella, which makes sense but still feels like a bit of a cheat! Thank you for pointing out those musical notes – I didn’t even notice them

      Reply

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