owlcrate unboxing

OwlCrate Unboxing + Of Fire and Stars Review

December’s OwlCrate box theme was Epic, and it promised to provide objects from Lord of the Rings, Game of Thrones, and Harry Potter (to name a few). It totally delivered! It also promised an epic fantasy novel, but unfortunately it failed that in that regard. Read on to see the contents of this box and the review for the book that came with it.

owlcrate unboxing

The epic contents!
  1. A mystery, mini Harry Potter Funko! You can only see part of mine in the photo above. Can you guess what it is?
  2. An adorable Lord of the Rings book pin designed by Jane Mount (Ideal Bookshelf).
  3. Four, very cool Game of Thrones coasters made by Dark Horse Comics.
  4. A lovely little card from The Chronicles of Narnia made by Susanne Draws.
  5. A sticker that says, “I’d rather die on an adventure than live standing still.” It’s from A Darker Shade of Magic and was made by Miss Phi.

owlcrate unboxing

owlcrate unboxing
I got the Fawkes Funko! Did you guess it?
And last (and in this case, least) the book, Of Fire and Stars by Audrey Coulthurst. 
OwlCrate Unboxing + Of Fire and Stars ReviewOf Fire and Stars by Audrey Coulthurst
Published by Balzer + Bray on November 22nd 2016
Genres: Fantasy
Pages: 389
Format: Hardback

Betrothed since childhood to the prince of Mynaria, Princess Dennaleia has always known what her future holds. Her marriage will seal the alliance between Mynaria and her homeland, protecting her people from other hostile lands. But Denna has a secret. She possesses an Affinity for fire—a dangerous gift for the future queen of a kingdom where magic is forbidden.
Now, Denna must learn the ways of her new home while trying to hide her growing magic. To make matters worse, she must learn to ride Mynaria’s formidable warhorses—and her teacher is the person who intimidates her most, the prickly and unconventional Princess Amaranthine—called Mare—the sister of her betrothed.
When a shocking assassination leaves the kingdom reeling, Mare and Denna reluctantly join forces to search for the culprit. As the two become closer, Mare is surprised by Denna’s intelligence and bravery, while Denna is drawn to Mare’s independent streak. And soon their friendship is threatening to blossom into something more.
But with dangerous conflict brewing that makes the alliance more important than ever, acting on their feelings could be deadly. Forced to choose between their duty and their hearts, Mare and Denna must find a way to save their kingdoms—and each other.

Well, I’m just going to get right to the point here and say that I couldn’t deal with this book. It was so boring I couldn’t finish it WHILE ON A 7-HOUR PLANE RIDE (that’s bad for me: I can usually read anything when I’m on a plane).

Here’s why I didn’t like it:

  • It’s billed as a fantasy novel, but it’s really about the main character’s love life: She’s betrothed to some prince and ends up falling in love with the prince’s sister. I’m sorry, but is this a telenovela or an epic fantasy book? Oh and there’s some magic and stuff thrown in there. It just reads like a book where the author wanted to have a lesbian relationship at the forefront but wanted it to be different, so she threw it in some generic fantasy world. Why not write a contemporary YA novel? Or perhaps set it in a fantasy world if you want magic so badly, but ditch the fantasy plot.
  • So what’s my issue with the fantasy aspect of this book? It’s just another cliche fantasy novel (with a plot very similar to another YA fantasy novel I recently hated): society is divided between magical people and non-magical people. The non-magical people hate the magical people and they’re on the brink of war. YAWN ZZZZZ SNOOOOZE YAWN YAWN YAWN. Oh, and did I mention that our main character is extra special magical? Or did I even need to mention that? You probably could have guessed it on your own. 

Consider reading this book if: you are interested in reading books about homosexuality or alternative relationships. You may enjoy this book immensely! DO NOT read it for the fantasy aspect of the book alone, or you will end up hating it like I did.

Did not finish at 50%.

Have you read Of Fire and Stars? I hope you liked it more than I did! 

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  1. Well I’m going to stay away from this I guess. When I read a fantasy, I want good world and plot first, romance as a subplot (usually. Sometimes I want mostly romance, BUT the plot and world still have to be decently developed in the background at the same time). I imagine I’ll be as frustrated as you were with this :/

  2. This is the rason why I do not have box subsription… I am worried I will get books that I would not pick up myself or books that I will end up hating. But all that bookish swag is so awesome! Sometimes I am tempted to purchase surprise box just to get book swag 🙂

    1. You know what, though- on the other side of the coin is that you sometimes get to read books that are really great that you NEVER would have picked up. I think I’ve gotten 8 boxes from OwlCrate, and I’ve really enjoyed all but 2 of them (and I would say only 1 was bad-this one- and one I couldn’t read because it wasn’t my type of book). So you never know! You should definitely try it some time just to read a book outside of your comfort zone (:

  3. I’ve seen a lot of negative and DNF reviews for this book, which is a major bummer considering all the hype (and how awesome this sounds!). I don’t read as much fantasy as I would like, but when there is no world building or a good, solid plot, it makes the rest of the book just “meh.” I’ll probably skip this one.

    The OwlCrate box is so awesome, though! I always want to sign up for a subscription box (mainly this one), but they don’t take PayPal so I never can. I love seeing what everyone gets in theirs, though!

    1. Yeah, I’d skip it if you care about the fantasy plot at all. If you don’t, and you’re more interested in the social/relationship aspect of the book, then you might be fine with it! Yes, OwlCrate and all those subscription boxes are super fun. I love seeing unboxings for all of the boxes, too. I live vicariously through them XD