Booksquisite Book Japan is a book box for lovers of Japanese literature! The box offers up Japanese novels in English translation and some goodies shipped straight from Japan. This box ships worldwide and for a box shipped from overseas it is actually pretty reasonably priced.
This box comes with two options: their monthly box which comes with a book and four mystery gifts from Japan, and a book only option which comes with a book, one washi bookmark, and one mystery gift. I opened for the book only option to test it out but also because I didn’t feel that I needed all that many items. This month’s theme is Eternal Summer.
As you may have noticed with the title of this post and the actual date it was posted my first box ran into some shipping difficulty. It was stuck for a while in customs and then was lost once it hit the US Post Office. I waited around a month because I figured it would take a while anyway coming from Japan, but when I finally reached out to the owner and we investigated we found where the box was lost. Saori was more than wonderful with prompt responses and she immediately shipped me a replacement box.
Furin (Wind Chime)
The gift item in this box shouldn’t have shocked me given the theme but it did, mostly because I didn’t expect to get something so nice! Anyone that’s ever watched Japanese films or anime has likely seen a furin at least once, softly ringing in the summer time. It is an image and sound that is so iconic and to me really makes summer feel relaxed and peaceful. I received my very own furin that was decently sized with cute hand painted goldfish on it. This is one of the most beautiful items I’ve ever received in a book box and I am incredibly happy to receive it! I have already hung it in my window to enjoy the rest of this summer.
As advertised in the box description, I received my first washi bookmark. It’s small and cute, the paper surprisingly thick and durable. It’s very simple but cute all the same and now one of the more unique bookmarks I have in my collection.
Due to the shipping difficulties I encountered Saori was extremely generous in including another surprise gift in my box! It’s actually a reasonably high quality bag, much thicker than I expected and feels good to hold. It looks beautiful but is durable at the same time which I can always appreciate. Peonies are one of my favorite flowers so I really love the peony stitching that decorates this bag.
I had never heard of this author, but she has won numerous Japanese and German literary awards for her work. The book sounds incredibly off-beat and exactly like my kind of book. I have yet to read any Japanese literature that didn’t fall under the crime thriller or horror genres, so I am excited to try something new! Especially since this book appears to be some kind of post-apocalyptic dystopia which I am all about. I’m very excited to receive this book and will be reading it soon, it feels like the perfect book to finish off my summer and kick my reading slump.
Yoshiro thinks he might never die.
A hundred years old and counting, he is one of Japan’s many ‘old-elderly’; men and women who remember a time before air and sea were poisoned, before terrible catastrophe prompted Japan to shut itself off from the rest of the world. Yoshiro may live for decades yet, but he knows his beloved great-grandson – born frail and prone to sickness – might not survive to adulthood. Day after day, it takes all of Yoshiro’s ingenuity to keep Mumei alive.
As hopes for Japan’s youngest generation fade, a secretive organization embarkes on an audacious plan to find a cure – might Yoshiro’s great-grandson be the key to saving the last children of Tokyo?
If I exclude the additional purse that I was given as compensation for the shipping troubles, looking for similar items on Amazon came up with a value of around $25 which is very close to what I paid for this box. Overall you get about what you pay for, but are paying a little extra really to have authentic items shipped from Japan. Besides the purse, the other items were quite easy to obtain on Amazon, so the value will be subjective depending on how much you care about having what is likely nicer quality items shipped from Japan and the surprise factor of the book box.
Are these items I’d buy?
Actually yes, every single one of them. The items are extremely beautiful and surprisingly nice quality. All of the items are ones that I love and the book falls under one of my absolute favorite genres.
Would I order again?
Yes, and I actually have another box coming in. I hesitated at first because of how long it took to ship, but the quality of the box and the level of customer service from this box convinced me that it was worth ordering again. I love Japanese literature and so I am beyond happy that this box exists.
Overall I am extremely happy with my first box, it was absolutely worth the wait and I am glad that Saori was more than willing to help me sort out the shipping issues. I really love that this box doesn’t choose authors that’re already widely popular in the United States but still includes award winning authors for their book choices while also following a theme. After looking at previous boxes it is clear that this is a wonderful box to really discover new authors that are reputable in Japan who perhaps are not nearly as well known overseas. This is great for readers like me that are lovers of Japanese literature and a really standout and unique box compared to what’s offered on the rest of the book box market.
How did you like this box?
Are you interested in Booksquisite Book Japan or Book Boxes in general?
Let me know your thoughts in the comments!