Rise Up | Wildest Dreams Book Box & A PHOENIX MUST BURN Mini-Book Review! | April 2020

(This post was written a while ago and never posted! So the “cheering myself up” bit is talking about lockdown and not other current world events.)

To cheer myself up, I decided to subscribe to a new book subscription box! After casting around for a box that was both affordable and that I thought I would enjoy, I found the Wildest Dreams Book Box and treated myself to a one-off subscription. However, after receiving April’s box I think it’s going to become a monthly thing!

*Obviously this contains spoilers for the April Box RISE UP! Don’t read if you don’t want spoilers!*

The Box

My box arrived a little battered but I was pleasantly surprised to find that everything was wrapped in tissue paper. I’ve had boxes before that have the cardboard wiggly worms, and whilst I think they’re fun, they aren’t great for the environment so I liked that Wildest Dreams just had some simple tissue paper. I’m going to run through all of the items, but skip downwards if you want a review of the book!

The first thing I had was a postcard with a little thank-you message from Zoe, owner of Wildest Dreams. I thought this was such a nice little touch.

Let’s start with this note-taking pad from Wildest Dreams themselves, this is a really good-sized notebook, with a pretty design, on good-quality paper. I can see myself using this to take notes and to send letters with!

The phoenix feather potion bottle was one of my favourite items! Made by Realms of Fae, this had a real feather in and appealed perfectly to my Harry Potter mad mind!

This postcard was inspired by the Belles and designed by Lia from @lostinink_. I haven’t read the Belles myself, though this postcard is gorgeous. I think I’ll have to pick it up.

I really loved this pretty bookmark and poem which was very much attached to the book. I now have the poem pinned up above my mirror!

And the final item was rose black tea from Rosie Lea Tea. I didn’t really expect to like this tea as I don’t like flavoured tea too much, but I really enjoyed this one. It had a nice floral scent but was mostly black tea. I prefer mine a little sweeter, but just the “plain” tea from the bag was really nice! I’m actually drinking a mug as I write this. It was also really handy that they included reusable tea bags.

The Book

Now let’s get onto what you’ve been waiting for: the book! The book this month is A PHOENIX FIRST MUST BURN edited by Patrice Caldwell. This collection is stories with Black main characters who are all heroines.

This book was so good, and I think it’s introduced me to a host of new writers. It’s all about Black women & gender non-conforming people in magical realistic and fantasy worlds. The stories range from past, present, to future.

Whilst of course there were a couple of stories I didn’t like, on the whole they were fantastic. I think they all just had this electric vibe that compelled me into reading them. I would say that some of the stories didn’t feel finished, but I think that’s just because I wanted the sequels and to know what happens next!

I really liked that they varied in both magically realistic and fantasy worlds. It was a really varied mixture that I think played to the strengths of every author who was featured.

All in all, I’m so glad that this book was included. I haven’t seen it anywhere on the internet except for in this box and it was a real pleasure to read.

Thank you for reading this blog post – I hope you enjoyed it! Let me know if you have/would get Wildest Dreams Book Box, and what you thought of this book if you’ve read it too. I will be continuing my subscription to this box, as I’m delighted with the products and the book! My next unboxings will be a bit late, as my boxes are currently being delivered to a different address than the one I live at… it’s a bit confusing, but it’ll sort itself out!

Until the next post,

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