Subscription box review: Powell’s Books Indiespensable and BOOX

As a Pacific Northwesterner, Powell’s Books is a staple in my literary wheel house so when I discovered they also do subscription boxes, I couldn’t wait to share them with you all. Powell’s has two subscription boxes at the moment: Indiespensable which is geared towards adults and keeping with Powell’s ongoing support for independent publishers and authors and BOOX which is geared towards young children, ages 3-7, with the hopes of fostering early literacy. Below I will briefly discuss the contents of the August/September shipments.



I was fortunate enough to receive volume 68 of Powell’s Indiespensable box which features The Burning Girl by Claire Messud, a small booklet containing and interview with the author and a wonderful, nostalgic Powell’s Northwest Reader coffee mug.

From the publisher’s website regarding The Burning Girl:

A bracing, hypnotic coming-of-age story about the bond of best friends, from the New York Times best-selling author of The Emperor’s Children.

Julia and Cassie have been friends since nursery school. They have shared everything, including their desire to escape the stifling limitations of their birthplace, the quiet town of Royston, Massachusetts. But as the two girls enter adolescence, their paths diverge and Cassie sets out on a journey that will put her life in danger and shatter her oldest friendship. The Burning Girl is a complex examination of the stories we tell ourselves about youth and friendship, and straddles, expertly, childhood’s imaginary worlds and painful adult reality—crafting a true, immediate portrait of female adolescence.

Claire Messud, one of our finest novelists, is as accomplished at weaving a compelling fictional world as she is at asking the big questions: To what extent can we know ourselves and others? What are the stories we create to comprehend our lives and relationships? Brilliantly mixing fable and coming-of-age tale, The Burning Girl gets to the heart of these matters in an absolutely irresistible way.

You can subscribe for the next volume of Indiespensable here for just $44.95. New volumes release every 6-8 weeks and often feature special editions of the featured novel, signed copies and other literary goodies.



I have a three-year-old son and reading to him has been a cherished activity since he was first born (which didn’t go so well at first with an emotional book choice and postpartum hormones. You know what I’m talking about, mommas?) That being said, I was so excited to share Powell’s BOOX subscription box with my son and with you all. This box came with two high-quality picture books, Peace is an Offering and The Fog, each with a diverse and fantastical element, respectively. The box also contained a small portable puzzle which is perfect for carrying to events that require the little to sit still with a quiet activity.

You can subscribe to BOOX here for just $35.95 per shipment. Each box contains 1-2 pictures books and other goodies.


Each box was sent complimentary from Powell’s Box in exchange for a review. 


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