Murder & Mayhem // March 2019 OwlCrate Unboxing // SPOILERS

Posted April 10, 2019 by Amber in Unboxings / 6 Comments


After posting the February OwlCrate Unboxing last month, I got some great feedback about unboxings and ultimately I decided based on what y’all told me, I’d keep doing them when I can!  I agree it is interesting to hear about the different subscription boxes out there, and perhaps on more of an opinion-basis as opposed to a “this is what was included” thing.  Alors, I bring you the March 2019 OwlCrate unboxing!

For those of you who aren’t familiar with OwlCrate, it’s a monthly young adult book subscription box based in the US.  Monthly subscriptions are $29.99 + shipping and they usually ship around the 15th of the month. I’ve had historically really good luck with OwlCrate.  I’d say that I am 100% happy with 90% of their boxes, which is the best luck I’ve had with any book box, personally.  There are others that are really good as well – I will shout to the ends of the earth about FairyLoot and Illumicrate – but OwlCrate is my #1.

I should also say that this post is in no way sponsored.  I genuinely love this box.  I pay for my monthly subscription just like all the other lay folk.

March’s theme was Murder and Mayhem.  I was into this theme immediately because it promised something dark and deceptive.  I really enjoy things like Vicious so I figured hey, if the box is along that them, I’m totally into it!


You can’t miss the first item in this box – it’s a canvas drawstring backpack by Michelle Gray.  A few things about this bag?  First of all, this is wicked sturdy.  It’s a heavy canvas and there is no way this is going to break if your put something heavy (like, um, books?) in it.  Additionally, this design is great because although it is still on-theme, it’s not book-specific, so this item could really appeal to anyone.  This item was a win for me – I’m really impressed by its durability and usefulness.

The next item was a promotional pencil for Four Dead Queens, which sort of ruined the book surprise for me because it was right on top?  While technically pencils are a useful item, I don’t tend to use them and there’s nothing about this design that really makes it pop – it’s just gold (not foil) text on navy blue pencil.  Blah.  This item didn’t impress, but to be honest, I’m rarely impressed by the promo items included for the book of the month.


The third item was a 2oz. candle from In the Wick of Time.  I really like this company’s candles, so I’m always happy to see them included in a box.  This particular box included a random candle of three different options.  My candle, Malchai, smells like pomegranate!  I haven’t read This Savage Song yet, so I don’t know much about this monster, but I love pomegranate scents (anything fruity, really) and I’m happy to see V. E. Schwab included here – murder and mayhem is very much her style.  I love this item, but I’m always happy with candles!

The big item OwlCrate has been teasing for this box is their first ever ceramic travel mug.  I love mugs, and I don’t have a ceramic travel mug, so I was into this item when it was announced.  The item included was designed by Catarina Book Designs and features a quote from Nevernight.  I like the mug overall – it feels really well made and the design is adorable.  Unfortunately, I haven’t read Nevernight and the quote isn’t really meaningful to me?  But fortunately, it includes a silicone cozy and I can cover up the quote if I want!  The cover is also silicone and while I was a bit nervous about it at first, it seems to be leak-proof!  Overall, I’d say this item is a win, even though I’m not familiar with the fandom.  It’s something I’ll definitely use.


If you’re a fan of Three Dark Crowns, you may enjoy the vinyl sticker designed by Jamila Mehio included this month.  The art is cute and would work great in other circumstances, but for me, it didn’t really fit the feel of this box.  I also have no idea what to do with vinyl sticks even when I like them – they’re all sitting in a little box and I sometimes use them for bookstagram? Adding to this the fact I haven’t read Three Dark Crowns, this item was lost on me and gets a #nope.

Almost every book box you get will, every time, include a bookmark.  This month, we got a woodmark from Ink & Wonder Designs.  A lot of the book boxes work with this company, and their bookmark designs are always gorgeous.  This month, we have a quote from A Game of Thrones and it’s a gorgeous, bold red design.  I love it.  Bookmarks are always useful, so this is a win or me.


This month’s pin of the month was created by Ink & Iron Designs, and can I just say, it is so cool.  I’ve never seen a spinner pin included in one of these boxes before.  In fact, the only spinner pins I’ve seen are the Disney ones I get?  So this is a novelty and it’s super cool.  It’s a really simple design, but it’s awesome and this is definitely a win item for me.

Last, this month’s book is Four Dead Queens by Astrid Sholte.  This book has been blowing up the blogosphere, so I feel like a lot of people will be really excited to see this one included.  I could take it or leave it and in fact, it wasn’t even on my TBR.  It is now!  The cover change on this one is a red hue instead of a blue hue.  I really like the change to red, and I also really appreciated how the items in the box was on theme for this.  This book is signed as well.

As far as the March OwlCrate goes, there were some “yes” items for me, and some “no” items.  One of the things that I really like about OwlCrate is I usually like all the items, so this box is an anomaly for me.  Fortunately, the items I didn’t like are smaller items, so I don’t really feel like my money was wasted?

When I was watching Austine’s unboxing on her Bookstagram stories last month, she mentioned something that I found interesting and really true.  These book boxes constantly recycle the popular fandoms.  On one hand, I get it?  They’re trying to feed to the majority of their subscribers by choosing super popular fandoms.  But it would be nice if these boxes chose one book or series that wasn’t super popular every once in a while.  That where last month’s box was so cool when they chose Spirited Away. It was just nice to see something different.  I think I’m going to look out for that going forward.


What do you think of this month’s OwlCrate?  My favorite item is the bag – I really like he way it was made and that it’s non-specific.  Tell me your favorite item in the comments!

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6 responses to “Murder & Mayhem // March 2019 OwlCrate Unboxing // SPOILERS

  1. If you loved Vicious I think you would like Nevernight! I mean, they are completely different but I felt the overall tone was similar? Does that make any sense? Haha I didn’t love this box, but I knew that going in, and I love the travel mug, so it was worth it! (I was also hesitant with the lid being silicone, but I haven’t had any issues!)

    Brittany recently posted: Sunshine Blogger Award #9
    • Amber

      Nevernight is definitely on my list. 😅 The audiobook isn’t available through my library on Libby/Overdrive so I have to wait until I get a physical copy. Still, merch for it is all over the place lately? I’m glad you liked the mug! I’ve used it a couple times now and it gets HOT. But it also limits my hot cocoa portions which is a good thing. 🤣

  2. I love the bag, bookmark, and pin! I also agree with you that boxes should really look for smaller fandoms to showcase. I’m in a few small fandoms and it’s really hard to find anything that even closely resembles our fandom unless we make it ourselves. And it’s not to say that they should find a smaller fandom for EACH box, but include them where they can be.

    Monica Laurette recently posted: Monica Abroad: The Beginnings
    • Amber

      I’m happy even if it’s a small item? For example, OwlCrate included a small item for Spirited Away in February which I appreciated. The Alchemy & Ink crate in January included a couple items for Deathless that were beautifully designed (it’s one of the curators favorite books, and she warned that items would be included). It’s just nice to have a change up from the Grishaverse and Potterverse and V.E. Schwab’s books sometimes. I like them all, but I want a surprise! 😀