Subscription boxes are all the rage these days. With no effort on your part, you can have personally crated boxes food, toiletries, beauty products, or novelties delivered right to your door. You name it, there's a box for it. But for book lovers hoping to get in on the trend, are there any literary subscription boxes worth looking into? And are they really worth it?
First off, yes. There are a plenty of book-centric subscription boxes out there — probably more than you realize. The readerly corners of Instagram love OwlCrate and Book of the Month, but those two are hardly the tip of the iceberg.
Literary subscriptions are as plentiful as any other box filled with novelties (and snacks!). Many, in addition to offering specially-selected books tailored to your tastes, sweeten the deal with reader-approved goodies. Some offer just two options to choose from — adult and YA — while others have boxes for fans of children’s literature, romance, and the classics.
Whether you’re just getting your first — or already have one, two, or 10 subscription boxes — it’s extremely tempting to sign up for fun postal surprise. In anticipation for your next book club, check out this round-up of the best 18 literary subscription boxes on the market.
OwlCrate's themed boxes have taken Instagram by storm. Users love to showcase their monthly arrivals, which include a new YA hardcover, bookish goodies, and handmade items. Past boxes have included Funko POP figurines, tote bags, and magnetic bookmarks. Plans start at $29.99 (ages 8-12) and $32.99 (14+) per month, plus shipping.
BlackLIT not only sends you books written by Black authors bi-monthly, they’ll also include three to five premium products from Black-owned businesses, and up to five writing prompts designed to get your brain juices flowing. The subscription offerings are separated by genre, with fiction, nonfiction, and spiritual among the options. BlackLIT starts at $39.99 per month.
The Book(ish) Box
This literary subscription box ships each month with a special item — such as a T-shirt, home trinkets, or accessory — specially selected for book nerds. If you want mugs, candles, and shirts delivered to your door every month, Book(ish) Box is just right for you. Book(ish) Box plans start at $30.99 per month.
Literati Book Clubs
Have you ever wondered what your favorite writers are reading, or which books they’d recommend? Literati Books Clubs have the answers. Choose from over 12 books clubs curated by literary icons and public figures — including Susan Orlean, Cheryl Strayed, and Malala Yousafzai — and you’ll receive each of their monthly picks. You also won’t break the bank — subscriptions start at $8.25 per month.
Tailored Book Recommendations
What sets Tailored Book Recommendations (TBR for short) apart is how personalized the monthly recommendations are. The service will actually pair you with a literary expert, who will personally select books to fit your taste. It’s convenient, and you’re likely to enjoy every book you get in the mail. The books are shipped from Print: A Bookstore in Portland, Maine, so you’ll also be supporting an independent shop. Subscriptions start at $16 quarterly or $52 annually.
The Book Drop
The Book Drop offers six subscription options for fans of YA and adult literature, plus an additional two box types for younger readers. Starting at $17.99 per month, you'll get a hand-picked paperback delivered to your door, plus the satisfaction of supporting Bethany Beach Books, an independent bookstore in Bethany Beach, Delaware.
NovelTea Book Club
If you love the hug-in-a-mug that is tea, the NovelTea Book Club is right for you. Starting at $19 per month, this literary subscription box contains a book, a package of tea or coffee, and extras, such as bubble baths, cookies, and candles. Readers interested in going green and saving some cash can opt to receive a reduced-cost secondhand book instead of a Penguin Classic.
Indiespensable by Powell’s Books
Powell’s Books in Portland, Oregon is one of the biggest, most famous independent bookstores in the United States, so it makes sense that they’d offer their own spin on the literary subscription box. Indiespensable sends subscribers a new hardcover title alongside other goodies each month, including interviews with authors, advanced reader copies of upcoming titles, and more. Subscriptions are $44.95 (shipping and tax included).
Created by two former publishers who know what’s what in the literary industry, Scribbler is a great subscription box for readers who want to try their hand at writing. For as little as $27 per month, subscribers receive books, inspirational materials, writing prompts, live chats with publishing experts, and more.
Page 1 Book Subscriptions
For those who want more of a say in the books they receive, Page 1 Book Subscriptions customizes each box to readers’ personal taste. This means there are more options than just newly-released hardcovers; subscribers can receive books published half-a-century ago, if they choose. Page 1 boxes also include “a little something extra” as well, so you’ll get an added surprise with each shipment. Subscriptions start at $75 for three months, plus shipping.
Book of the Month
One of the oldest and longest-running literary subscription services, Book of the Month is the best option for readers who just want books delivered to their doors. Book of the Month subscribers receive book credits, which can be redeemed for a title from the company’s monthly selection, or carried over for the future. Readers can also add up to two additional books of their choice, priced at $9.99 each, to every delivery. Subscriptions start at $12.50 per month.
My Thrill Club
If you're a fan of creepy novels, mysteries, and thrillers, My Thrill Club is the subscription book service for you. For as little as $16 per month, you can receive two hardcover books in your chosen genre (or a mix of genres, if you select the “Surprise Me!” option), plus an ebook code for more reading fun.
Boxwalla Book Box
In addition to its offerings for film aficionados and beauty obsessives, Boxwalla has a subscription box designed just for book lovers. For $29.95 per box, readers receive two books, plus extra goodies, delivered every two months. With an eye toward global literature and Nobel-worthy writing, the Boxwalla Book Box is a great option for the highbrow fiction connoisseur.
Once Upon a Book Club
Once Upon a Book Club makes reading interactive. Every adult and YA subscriber receives wrapped gifts with their monthly book, with instructions for exactly when to open them. (Hint: Every gift is tied to a page number in the monthly reading pick.) It’s a book club with the extra fun of being game-ified, starting at $49.99 per month.
Used Books Monthly
By far the greenest and most affordable option on this list, Used Books Monthly ships handpicked, thrifted reads to you for a scant $6.79 per month. Subscribers choose to receive one, two, or four books in the genres and styles they choose from a comprehensive questionnaire. Where else can you get that kind of customer service from home?
Peace & Pages
Peace & Pages is all about wellbeing. Starting at $25.99 per month, subscribers receive a book in their chosen genre, plus up to four self-care items, such as candles, coffee, or snacks. You can opt to receive boxes on a monthly or bimonthly basis, and, if you feel you have enough books at home, you can choose to receive only the self-care items for a similar price.
Unplugged Book Box
This is another literary subscription service focused on getting away from it all. The Unplugged Book Box offers monthly deliveries centered around themes in adult, YA, and new adult fiction. Each box also comes with up to six self-care items and one brand-new novel, published within 60 days of box assembly. Unplugged Book Box plans start at $39.99 per month.
My Coffee and Book Club
This highly customizable book subscription service sends customers two hardcover books and an ebook — chosen from eight available genres, plus a special "Surprise Me!" option — alongside a 12-ounce bag of ground or whole-bean coffee, every single month. Prices go as low as $31.99 per month, a great deal for your book-buying buck.
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