I’ve been subscribed to Illumicrate ever since it started. Every box I’ve had has been exceptional, lovingly made and full of unique and beautiful bookish items (as well as some MUST READ books). Here’s what I got in the March edition:
The Illumicrate box comes fast every quarter, and this time I was especially impressed with the speed of delivery, because the UK has snow! It was securely packaged, as ever and CAN I TELL YOU HOW MUCH I LOVE THE YELLOW??? It’s just so sunshine-y and bright and it makes me happy.
There’s always a handy little list of the items inside the box, with links to the shops who made them. I find this PARTICULARLY helpful, especially if you want to check out more of a supplier’s items.
1// Blood and Sand by C. V Wyk
FORGED IN BATTLE…
FROM THE DUST OF THE ARENA…
A LEGEND WILL RISE
The action-packed tale of a 17-year-old warrior princess and a handsome gladiator who dared take on the Roman Republic―and gave rise to the legend of Spartacus…
For teens who love strong female protagonists in their fantasy and historical fiction, Blood and Sand is a stirring, yet poignant tale of two slaves who dared take on an empire by talented debut author C. V. Wyk.
Roma Victrix. The Republic of Rome is on a relentless march to create an empire―an empire built on the backs of the conquered, brought back to Rome as slaves.
Attia was once destined to rule as the queen and swordmaiden of Thrace, the greatest warrior kingdom the world had seen since Sparta. Now she is a slave, given to Xanthus, the Champion of Rome, as a sign of his master’s favor. Enslaved as a child, Xanthus is the preeminent gladiator of his generation.
Against all odds, Attia and Xanthus form a tentative bond. A bond that will spark a rebellion. A rebellion that threatens to bring the Roman Republic to its end―and gives rise to the legend of Spartacus…
The story continues in Fire and Ash, coming in 2019 from Tor Teen.
This is what I LOVE about Illumicrate. I had never heard of this book, and would have probably never picked it up without this box subscription service. And now, having read the synopsis, I am VERY excited to read it. Kickass, female led historical fiction sounds right up my street.
2 // Fight the Darkness Cushion Cover
*which was immediately pulled on to a spare pillow and put in prize of place on my bed* Here is the other thing I love about this box. I haven’t read Sabaa Tahir’s work yet. I KNOW, I’m a bad book blogger. But I have been meaning to pick up AN EMBER IN THE ASHES for ages, and this badass book quote might just get my butt in gear. This is beautifully made, the colour is EVERYTHING, and it matches my other pillows. A* work, Illumicrate.
3 // A Rebel’s Command List (& Other Extras)
You had me at…lists. This gorgeous notepad is PERFECT for the midnight note-taking that I am prone to do. As you can see there are also tonnes of great little extras–book samplers (VERY handy for figuring out if a read is for you), bookmarks, jotters and a fun handheld mirror.
4 // Inimitable Mug
GUYS. I full-on squealed when I saw this. Hamilton + mug = perfection in my mind. And that’s not even thinking about the gorgeous design that made my heart swoon. You best believe I had a hot chocolate in this bad boy approx 0.432 seconds after I took this photo.
5 // Daggermark
I felt a teeny bit Arya Stark-esque when I held this beauty in my hands. This is beautiful, I can tell it was made with SO much love and care and I’m really looking forward to having a sturdy bookmark in my bookmark arsenal (normal people DEF have bookmark arsenal’s, right guys?)
6 // Lunar Lip Balm
I’m a sucker for anything that combines bookishness and beauty. These two lip balms were inspired by one of my favourite YA fairytale reimagining’s, THE LUNAR CHRONICLES. They each have a unique, fresh scent that isn’t overbearing, and their moisturising-ness is amazing.
7// Phoenix Magnet
I can NEVER have enough Harry Potter merch, and as as self-confessed Fawkes fangirl, I am so glad to add this to my little fridge magnet collection. The illustration of Fawkes is glorious–fiery and in flight, just like he should be, and every time I open my fridge I catch a glimpse of this and smile.
ARC: The Smoke Thieves by Sally Green
A princess, a traitor, a hunter and a thief. Four teenagers with the fate of the world in their hands. Four nations destined for conflict.
In Brigant, Princess Catherine prepares for a loveless political marriage arranged by her brutal and ambitious father. In Calidor, downtrodden servant March seeks revenge on the prince who betrayed his people. In Pitoria, feckless Edyon steals cheap baubles for cheaper thrills as he drifts from town to town. And in the barren northern territories, thirteen-year-old Tash is running for her life as she plays bait for the gruff demon hunter Gravell.
As alliances shift and shatter, and old certainties are overturned, our four heroes find their past lives transformed and their futures inextricably linked by the unpredictable tides of magic and war. Who will rise and who will fall? And who will claim the ultimate prize?
I haven’t read Sally Green’s HALF BAD series, but having read this synopsis I’m definitely excited to dive into this world. It’s another book that I probably wouldn’t have picked up without Illumicrate gently nudging me in its direction.
So, in summary:
- Illumicrate‘s books are varied and ALWAYS interesting, and are generally books that aren’t yet on my radar. Because of this, I feel like I’m reading more out of my comfort zone, which is great!
- The items in the box are unique, fandom-y and exquisitely made. I have been blown away by every single item in each box. It’s a great way to incorporate bookishness into your everyday life.
- Any business that supports small, creative businesses gets a YAY from me. Illumicrate has introduced me to some very talented folk who I would have never of discovered on my own.
I also at this point want to make it really clear that I’m not sponsored by/working with Illumicrate. I just think it’s a great book subscription box that deserves to a shout out. They also do special editions of boxes which focus on one series/world, which I think is a really cool idea. To find out more about Illumicrate, click here.