I LOVE a good subscription box. I’m lucky enough to live in a place where you can essentially get anything you want delivered to your door, so thoughtful, bespoke book services are very much my jam.
I’ve subscribed to Powell’s magnificent Indispensable for a year or so. Each box contains one gorgeous signed, hardcover edition of a new indie novel, as well as a lovely little booklet containing an interview with the author. I’ve also received ARCs, paperbacks on the featured author’s previous work (hello, The Heart’s Invisible Furies), and more cute goodies (chocolate, tea, lip balm, all the essentials). This month’s book is Little Gods by Meng Jin.
As far as subscriptions go, it’s a little pricey at $45, but I’d happily give Powell’s the majority of my money if I lived a little closer.
They also have a kids subscription box, Boox, which this month features In a Jar, by Deborah Marcero. It made me weep, it was so beautiful. My daughter was just confused.
Out of Print Clothing
Out of Print Clothing had another bonkers Grab Bag deal, so I got four bookish shirts for $40. Two Sesame Street, two Agatha Christie. A suitable combo, I’m sure you’ll agree. Most of my shirts come from Out of Print, and they’re fantastic. They’re not paying me to say this, but I wish they would.
4000 Miles – Amy Herzog
I read 4000 Miles, the Amy Herzog play that’s getting it’s premiere on London’s West End in April. I don’t read enough plays anymore, and I really enjoyed this one. It was incredibly easy to visualize. I might go back to reading a play a week. Since one of my favorite plays, The Pillowman, is getting a revival, it might be time for me to pick that one up again. Do you have any favorite modern playwrights?
Upcoming Releases I’m Incredibly Excited About
I loved Wyld’s All The Birds, Singing, and I had no idea she had a new novel coming out. Max Porter (author of the wonderful Lanny) described it as “haunting” and “masterful”. Yes please!
The publisher blurb – “A terrifying new gothic horror novel about two sisters and a haunted house that never sleeps, perfect for fans of Shirley Jackson’s We Have Always Lived in the Castle.” It might as well say, “This book was written with Tracey in mind.”
To be honest, the blurb (and the cover) of this book led me to believe it might be a bit shit. But then I read this article in the Guardian, and learned the book is about an imaginary friend, so sign me up!
I was pleasantly surprised by Stage’s debut Baby Teeth. I still think about it quite often. That psycho daughter was quite the character. And Stage’s follow-up novel sounds like it has tinges of folk horror, so I’m very much looking forward to this.
Can we talk about Samantha Schweblin?! Oh my word, she’s incredible! I had no idea what was happening in her novel Fever Dream, but enjoyed it all the same. Her collection of short stories, Mouthful of Birds, is outstanding. I’ve read plot synopses of Little Eyes, and can’t even begin to fathom what it’s about. All I know is, I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy.
As you might have noticed, I very much enjoy weird fiction by female authors. So if you have any recommendations in this area, please send them my way.
I’m continuing with David Mitchell’s Utopia Avenue. I’m about a third of the way through, and I THINK it’s about to get weird. I certainly hope so.
I’m still enjoying Tracey Ullman’s narration of Angela Carter’s Wise Children, which is devastating and hilarious in equal parts.
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