I am here to give my full, enthusiastic, screaming-from-the-mountain-tops review of the Addie LaRue Owlcrate special edition box.
I know, I know. The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue came out on October 6th, right? And it is now December 4th? Well, funny story about that.
Yes, The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue came out nearly two months ago now, and nearly everyone has been talking about it to the point of me nearly needing to hop off all my socials because holy smokes can a girl read a book a couple months after its release without having nothing-but-that-book in her feed every day, laden with spoilers? Oy! I’m so happy for V. E. Schwab about how quickly Addie skyrocketed up the NYT Bestseller list and for all the love this book is getting. It’s so exciting.
It’s an undeniable truth that due to vendor delays, the special edition Owlcrate box didn’t ship until the end of October. This was in part because of an item vendor (not sure which one) and in part because of the publisher not getting to books to the team on time. I want to be upfront about this delay because three weeks is a pretty long delay for something this anticipated and this expensive. I also want to note that Owlcrate was consistent and forthcoming with information and updates about this box once it had been delayed, and I actually received mine a couple days before I expected it. Owlcrate is a consistently good brand in my opinion, and I don’t hold this delay against them.
In fact, I’ll go as far as to say that the Addie LaRue box was worth the wait.
Okay so first off, this box is huge. The items in the Addie LaRue box all fit in here pretty snuggly and you still have the traditional Owlcrate branding… but I think this box is about twice the size of a normal Owlcrate box. Without even opening it, that portends excitement.
The Page Holder
Item number one is a wooden page holder by Juniper and Ivy Designs! I really loved this entire box, but of all the items in it, this one is my least favorite. It’s beautifully crafted, so I think Juniper and Ivy did a fabulous job on the design… but if I’m being perfect honest, my first thought upon seeing this item was “is this an Ouija board piece”?
I think Owlcrate must have anticipated that reaction, because there are instructions for use on the spoiler card as well as the inside of the item’s box. Glad to know it’s probably not just me who would have been confused!
For myself, this is my favorite Juniper and Ivy item I’ve received in an Owlcrate box. The wood used is thicker and feels good quality, and I also like that the design is subtle. I’m not sure how or if I’m going to use this in my reading, but I’m certainly not discarding it yet – it’s a good quality item and both pretty and subtle.
It is very cool to see an Alchemy & Ink candle in this box.
For those of you who aren’t big candle buyers or are unfamiliar with this company, Alchemy & Ink puts out high quality bookish and gothic candles that are, quite frankly, very difficult to get. This is one of those companies that restocks only a couple times a year, and sells out usually within an hour. They are very sought after. I was lucky enough to snag one of their special editions boxes once and have been unable to grab anything with restocks since (though I admit, I have so many candles, I haven’t been sitting there poised and ready). Alchemy & Ink restocks remind me of Black Friday rushes, to be honest.
This candle is called “The Darkness” and smell slightly of forests, earth, woodsmoke, and night. It’s a subtle candle with musky notes and really lovely.
This box’s enamel pin was designed by Forensics and Flowers. This is actually a new vendor for me so I popped over to their shop and they have some really cools designs, I recommend checking them out! The “I’m Fine” Pumpkin on Fire pin is a personal favorite, being as that’s sort of a mood for 2020.
The Addie pin has clear lettering that reads “a story is an idea, wild as a weed”. It’s sort of a generic book-quote-pin design, but that’s fine with me because the generic designs go with everything. It’s black and rose gold, and this is a good time to let y’all know that everything in this box is themed around that color scheme – black, rose gold, and a little white. It’s glorious.
The Travel Mug
There’s usually a mug or bottle of some sort in Owlcrate boxes, and these are perpetually useful – I used the water bottle from the Epic Adventures box for an age… until I accidentally dropped it on my kitchen floor just wrong and it broke but that was totally my fault and not Owlcrate’s.
The lettering on this mug was designed by @paperbackbones and reads “Books, she has found, are a way to live a thousand lives – or to find strength in a very long one” and on the other side it commemorates The Last Word, a fictional bookshop from The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue. One thing that drives me crazy about Owlcrate’s bottles is that I have no idea of the ounce-age on them. I’d guess this one is 10oz., maybe 12oz., but I’m not sure. It is, however, insulated for either hot or cold drinks, and includes an infuser insert which I thought was pretty cool. I also really like how compact is – I have small backpacks for travel and it’s a good thing to have along because it’ll actually fit in them without taking up the entire bag (looking at you, my beloved DSLR).
Y’all ready for what I think is the coolest item in this box?
This beautifully made, wooden perpetual calendar designed by Daffodils and Ink.
These are actual wood blocks and it was this item that made the box so heavy. I’ve never seen something like this included in any book box ever and I really like that while there’s Addie theming (a quote on the back, behind the blocks), it’s otherwise subtle. This is an item I am definitely going to be using and one I would never have thought to purchase for myself. I’ve already got it set up on my home office desk, and it adds a little ritual and routine to my WFH mornings, changing the date every day.
The last item in this box is a three-year memory journal. Notebooks and journals are, again, a pretty common item in book boxes How the Addie LaRue box took it to the next level is to take that blank lined journal and give us a memory journal. Which I love. Basically, the idea here is to jot down a small something every day starting January 1st 2021, and do that for three years., looking back on the previous years as you do. I am a huge journaller and I love this idea. I do most my journalling electronically these days for speed and search reasons, but nothing beats good old-fashioned hand journalling and this is a really good micro way of doing that and I’m super excited.
Finally we come to the book! Since this is a themed box, the book itself is no surprise – it’s a hardcover edition of The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue! Here’s the rundown on the features of this special edition:
- No dust jacket – the hardback itself is foil stamped.
- Rose gold foil lettering
- Front and back cover designs.
- A black place marker ribbon.
- Exclusive end pages
I think this edition is really nice looking. I’m honestly a sucker for the rose gold design – I like it better than the gold that is on the official hardback.
So that’s the whole box!
Well, that and a Spotify playlist and the spoiler card, which weren’t really screaming to have an exclusive line item feature. 🙂 I think the Owlcrate team outdid themselves on this one – I haven’t gotten one of their special edition boxes in a while, but I think that Addie LaRue outdid the Vengeful special edition box I purchased from them in 2018. I also think this outdid Illumicrate’s Grishaverse box which I often bring up in these unboxings as an excellent box. In fairness to Illumicrate, book boxes and special edition boxes have come a long way in three years… but one of the things I love most about Addie was that this box had no throwaway paper items.
That right. No postcards, no art prints. I never know what to do with those and I keep very few of them. Every single item in this box was useful, and in fact, most of them were unique items I’d never seen before. For me, that made the cost of the box and the wait for it worthwhile. A heavy wood perpetual calendar like the one included here, honestly would probably retail at about $30 by itself, and the cost of the Addie book coming in near $30 as well… most of the value of this box comes from both those items.
The quality and thoughtfulness, the theming and relationship to the actual book gives me SUCH confidence in Owlcrate’s special edition boxes. If they announce a special edition box for one of my highly anticipated reads, I’d been board for another social edition box.
And, if you’re interested in Owlcrate’s Addie LaRue box, you can peek here to see if they have any for sale.
Have you ever ordered a special edition book box? This is the third one I’ve ordered, but I’d love to hear about peoples’ experiences with other books and other boxes! Let me know in the comments!