Unboxing: FairyLoot January and Caraval review

Better late than never, so here’s my FairyLoot unboxing. If you’re on Instagram, you’ve probably already seen an unboxing. The January box was seriously amazing! It was stuffed with amazing items:) I can’t wait for the February one to arrive (it has just shipped today!).

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Contents

  1. The first item I came across when I opened the box, was a Funko mystery mini. These are so cool, I’ve been wanting one for ages! FairyLoot sent out both Harry Potter and Game of Thrones ones, and I got the GoT themed one. Mine had Arya, who’s one of my favorite characters:)
  2. My absolute favorite item in this box is a Night Circus themed pillowcase, saying ‘The finest of pleasures are always the unexpected ones’.
  3. I also got my first bookish candle! This one smells like bubble-gum, and it says ‘Come back yesterday’. Fun fact: the author of the book chose the name herself!
  4. The next item is a lovely rose necklace:)
  5. Also, there’s a two-sided Alice in Wonderland bookmark! One side says ‘Imagination is the only weapon in the war against reality’, and the other side says ‘We’re all mad here’.
  6. An extra book: ‘How to think like Sherlock’ by Daniel Smith. This is such a fun extra, which offers sort of deduction excercises and such. My Goodreads review: ‘The premisse of this book is a fun one: apparently Sherlock Holmes has won popularity over the last few years, so why not jump in on that and write a book about how he worked and how others can do that too? In the end, however, this consisted mainly of fragments from the Sherlock Holmes stories, and already existing tests (I already knew multiple ones from other quizzes). The only thing the author added, were a basic structure, and some interpretations. Reading this was entertaining, but nothing spectacular or very instructive.’
  7. Bonus items were: an Alchemists of Loom bookmark, a Passenger notebook, and a Jackaby chapter download code.
  8. And last but not least, the book: Caraval, by Stephenie Garber! I got my favorite cover (the clock), and it came with a bunch of extras: a bookmark, a postcard, a signed bookplate, and an author letter with the Caraval map on the back.

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Book review

I’ve already read the book, and I really enjoyed it! My Goodreads review: ‘I received this book in my FairyLoot box before its release date, and I just couldn’t wait to dive in. The book is beautiful both inside and out, and I really enjoyed reading it. I love books with a mysterious vibe, so this was a great one. Caraval was fascinating and immersing; I almost finished it in one sitting. It felt great to be able to try and solve the puzzle along the way – sometimes books leave out major clues and that’s such a shame! The lines between reality and imagination were blurry, which made the book even more enthralling. Unfortunately, part of the ending felt a little anticlimatic (no worries, I won’t spoil anything). But on the other hand, there was still a cliffhanger that left me craving for more.

I would urge you to pay attention to the symbolism in this book when you read it, because it adds an extra layer! Even the outside of the book is part of that, with the four different covers for instance. Another extra layer was provided by the storyline itself. Because it wasn’t just an elaborate puzzle set in some sort of dreamworld. It was also a story about two sisters. The author herself says it’s mainly a story about the love between sisters, but I have a bit of a problem with that. That’s because I didn’t like the little sister, Donatella. She was selfish, and she just assumed Scarlett, the main character, would always be there for her, no matter what, without her ever having to give anything in return: “I love you, Tella.”, says Scarlett. And then Tella says: “I know you do” (It’s Princess Leia and Han Solo all over again!!) I know it’s not necessarily this black and white, but Tella could have given Scarlett a little more, is all I’m saying. The storyline that touched me most, was the one between the sisters and their abusive father. It’s well-summarized in one of Scarlett’s thoughts: “She had grown up thinking her father’s abuse had been her fault – the result of what happened when she made a mistake. But now she could clearly see. Her father was responsible. Nobody deserved his ‘punishments’.”

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Conclusion

This was a really good box, with a great book! It’s gonna be hard for FairyLoot to top this one:) Overall, if you’re looking for a good subscription box, I’d highly recommend it. As for the book, I’d highly recommend it if you like a mystery and are into magical books.

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