Friday, May 31, 2019

Why I Stopped Subscribing to Book Boxes

Hello all! Today is a bit of a different post for you all. Instead of a book review, Top 5 Wednesday, or recommendations post I thought I'd have a little discussion. I really want to incorporate more discussions on books and the community into my blog and I thought this would be a good place to start. So today I decided to talk about why I no longer buy book subscription boxes.

Disclaimer: I'm not saying book boxes aren't great, but these are just my personal reasons for not wanting them and they're not an attack on any boxes or people who subscribe to boxes. Everyone likes different items, books, and merch so what I find pushes me away from book boxes might be something that keeps a different person subscribing every month. This is just my personal situation :)

Honestly it all boils down to money and boxes not being worth it. First, of the 15+ books I've gotten in subscription boxes over the years, I've read all of two of them. One of them I hated and the other I read without remembering it was from a book subscription box. I prefer knowing what the book will be before I get the box because, as I look back on book boxes I've gotten, most of the books I've received are books I wouldn't have bought independently. While this can be a good thing in that it widens reading tastes, there are too many books I actually want to buy and I can't justify spending money on a box with an ok-sounding book. The flipside is that some boxes I've gotten before have been specifically because I knew that a certain book was in them--take Fairyloot's October 2018 box. The book was Girls of Paper and Fire, which was one that I really wanted to read.

Next, I find that I'm usually overloaded with merch that I either don't care about or can't use. One thing I've noticed recently is that of all the unboxings I see on social media every month, there's at least one box that includes a pillowcase. For me personally, I don't like having a lot of bookish pillowcases because (1) I don't have enough pillows and (2) they generally don't all match my bedding or each other. As someone who doesn't have a couch or a place to put pillows other than my bed, pillowcases are wasted on me, especially if they're for a fandom I'm not a part of.

What merch really boils down to is that I'm generally not a fan of every single fandom that's included in a box. Usually there's a mix of fandoms, but I can't justify spending $40-$60 on a box because there's two fandoms I like out of six that are included. What ends up happening is that I'm left with merch I don't care about. Take, for example, the Grishaverse. I have a multitude of merch items for this world from just two boxes. And I haven't even read most of the books.

Additionally, my favorite merch items I've ever gotten in boxes are items I can use. There are a lot of art prints and other items I can't use included in boxes. While art prints are pretty, there's only so many that I can display. A big item that's included more and more is edibles such as coffee, tea, hot chocolate, cookies, etc. I don't drink anything daily other than water and I don't drink tea or coffee ever. So when a big item in a box is one of these types of items, it just sits in my drawer for a long time.

Overall, with merch I would prefer to buy merch specific to books I love rather than get a whole box with a bunch of fandoms I'm not a part of. The individual merch items might be more expensive than  box items once you calculate how much you paid for each item in a box, but I'd still be saving money in the long run rather than throwing it out on stuff I'm going to get rid of.

What it really boils down to is that I don't find boxes to be worth the money I paid for them. Now, there are a few that I really felt were worth it--such as the Fairyloot box I got that had two books, a booksleeve, a reading journal, and more or special edition boxes that are completely centered around one fandom--but when looking over all of the book boxes I've ever gotten, I don't see the worth for me personally when I don't have a large disposable income. Maybe one day when I have a full-time job and don't have to pay for college I might venture back into book boxes, but for the time being it's not a viable option for me.

Thanks for reading!

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