Unboxing | Books That Matter: “Herland” | July 2021

Books That Matter delivered another stellar box this month, and even though, for the first time, I already had the book, I was still very excited to open it.

“Herland” was themed around feminist utopia and dystopia. In recent months, pop culture has seen the rise of dystopias once again, with the likes of books released in the pandemic as well as hits such as The Handmaid’s Tale. I think it’s a really interesting theme to have a book box themed around, especially a feminist one like BTM.

But let’s jump straight into the unboxing. This month, we received

  • 3x prints of 3 feminist writers: Margaret Atwood, Sophie Macintosh and Octavia __
  • A fennel and cardamon scented soap bar
  • A blue raspberry colour changing tea
  • A baby blue nail polish
  • An essay by Sophie Macintosh
  • Collectable bookmark
  • 2 beautifully illustrated greetings cards
  • The newsletter
  • And, the book: The Mercies by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

So, what did I think of the book box? (PS: If you want to see an unboxing Reel of this box, including the nail polish painted, check out my Instagram!)

Like I said in the opening, I already had the book, so let’s start there. The Mercies is by one of my all-time favourite authors, Kiran Millwood-Hargrave, and I’ll be posting a review soon too! This book is set in the 1600s in Norway, and tells the story of women accused of witchcraft. The majority of men in Vardo, Norway, drowned in a terrible storm, leaving the women to fend for themselves. They grew a community, but when another man – a self-proclaimed witchfinder – comes along, they find themselves threatened once again.

At first, I wasn’t too sure this book was the right choice for the box, but, thinking about it, it details the relative dystopia some women live on a day to day basis. Women all over the world today have their lives and livelihoods taken away, are enslaved without rights, and are refused choice. Even though books like The Handmaid’s Tale exist, set in a very dystopian society, sometimes dystopia isn’t as far away as we think.

Now, for the items! I don’t know if it was on purpose, but I liked the colour-scheming in this box – all blues and greens! I have yet to try the tea and I’m not sure if I’ll like it, because I don’t like green tea, but I do like blue raspberries, so we shall see! I’m also not a fan of the fennel scented soap bar, but again that’s a personal choice – however, I will use it, or gift it to someone else.

I really enjoyed the nail polish – it applies very well, and if you do it thick enough, you may only need one coat. I put some glitter over the top in my Instagram Reel!

And we had a few more decorative items this time. I think BTM are releasing an awful lot of prints, and I’m sort of running out of space. I have begun to stick them to my wardrobe, but I wish they would do something a little bit different – like the essay! I think this is a brilliant idea, and even though it’s not a book, it feels like a two book special just because you have two things to read!

What did you think of the July BTM box? I did enjoy it, but the boxes are starting to feel a little samey to me. Cohesion is important in book boxes, however, I think I would like to receive more than prints. I’ll continue to get BTM for the near future, but will have to see if I want to keep going into 2022!

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