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May 2019 Box: Flowers Over the Inferno by Ilaria Tuti

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Our May title is Flowers Over the Inferno by Ilaria Tuti and translated from the Italian by Ekin Oklap. We adored police detective Teressa Battaglia. She is a no nonsense, strong woman who has fought her way to her position of authority, but who is relatable with her health problems, tenacity, and temper. Here, this accomplished profiler, must solve gruesome murders where the murderer, uniquely, can’t be profiled. This is a fantastic and compelling twist in the police thriller genre.

Our first artisan vendor for May is Sew Studio Co in Winnipeg, MB who hand made these gorgeous book sleeves. The are a wonderful floral design, calling on the title of the book, and they are like a cozy blanket for your book, reminiscent of having to wrap up in the icy mountain setting of the novel.

Our other artisan vendor is Zack’s Coffee in Kamloops, BC. They roasted the rich espresso beans, not quite the coffee that Teressa drinks in the book, but Italian and definitely delicious.

The Licorice Wheels came from The Licorice Parlour in Vancouver. They are European licorice and are the same kind that Teressa keeps in her pockets and offers to the children she interviews.

This month we did something different for our box – we made a donation to the Alzheimer’s Society of Canada and they sent us these sweet packages of forget-me-not seeds. Teressa is having trouble with her memory in the book and fears a disease such as Alzheimer’s, so we thought it was fitting to support this worthy cause.

Our bookmark this month features one of our favourite quotes from the book.

Check out the brochure for our exclusive author interview with Ilaria Tuti. We found her answers to our questions as lovely as the writing in her book.

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April 2019 Box: Woman 99 by Greer Macallister

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Our April read is the historical thriller, Woman 99 by Greer Macallister. Set in the 1880’s in San Francisco, Charlotte, raised knowing exactly what her social climbing mother expects of her, has to decide what she is willing to risk to save her sister after she is exiled to an asylum. Mental institutions are notorious for accepting women not only because they are insane, but because they are inconvenient or embarrassing, and Charlotte is determined that her sister won’t be cast aside, no matter the cost to her own well being.

Forest Garden Soap and Sundry in Kamloops, BC, our artisan vendor for the month, has made a gorgeous lavender soap, reminiscent of the ones made by the inmates at the mental institution in the book.

The women in the asylum are not given the dignity of their names, but have a number chalked on their backs every day and Charlotte’s sister is a passionate artist, embellishing the walls with colourful murals. The chalk pastels represent both of these. We have also included a sketchbook for your own artistic creations.

The inmates are fed terrible food. We’ve included some BC-made potato chips as a yummy treat representing the often-rotten potatoes they were served.

The asylum was divided up according to the 9 Muses from Ancient Greek myth in the hopes that each Muse would help a specific type of mental illness. We’ve made our own version of Muse Cards for you, explaining the art & responsibility of each goddess.

The beautiful bookmark this month features an inspirational quote from the book.

Greer Macallister was kind enough to answer some of our questions in an exclusive author interview you will find in the brochure.

December Box: Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik

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Our December pick is Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik. This cold, wintery fantasy is set in a mythical kingdom and has three strong women whose stories intertwine in this beautifully told tale. It draws loosely on the Rumpelstiltskin story where a young woman boasts about being able to turn silver into gold, and it compels you with heroines who are smart, fierce, and willing to do whatever it takes to survive. This is a perfect, magical book for those long winter nights.

  • Our local vendor this month is Global Goddess who supplied us with the delicious smelling essential oil, blended specifically for us. It includes tangerine, cinnamon, clove, and coconut oils for that cozy, wintery feel.
  • You can use your oil by putting a few drops on the felt discs and inserting them into the silver tree necklace. The silver tree plays a large part in the book and one of the characters wears a necklace made of fairy silver.
  • We have included milk chocolate gold coins and milk and dark chocolate bells from Purdy’s Chocolates here in BC for you to nibble on while you read. The gold coins are what the fairies are after and they always arrive to the sound of bells.
  • The fluffy reading socks are the perfect accompaniment to this cold winter’s tale so that you can be warm and cozy while you read (the pattern on the socks may be different than pictured).
  • You will also find a lovely, icy bookmark with a great quote from the book.

June Box: Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeywell

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Our June  book is the internationally acclaimed novel, Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman. This is a book that could have been sad and tragic, but is made funny and quirky by the writing, which brings out the humanity in the characters. We love Eleanor and her unique way of looking at things helps us to understand what she is going through and that she is persevering in the best way she knows how.

Included with the book is:An adorable elephant tea strainer that represents Eleanor herself, who is the elephant in the room.

Fragrant, organic Darjeeling tea from Teaberry’s Fine Teas in Kelowna, BC. You’ll quickly see why this is Eleanor’s favourite tea.

Eleanor is always carrying around her shopper and has a frog pouf in her apartment — both of which are represented in the handy frog shopping bag.

For convenience’s sake, Eleanor makes the same dinner every day — pasta with pesto. We’ve found a yummy, locally made organic pesto mix from Made With Love in Kamloops, BC.

The lovely bookmark features a quote from the book and also a little monkey charm, reminiscent of how Eleanor sees her therapist.

The crossword puzzle included is inspired by Eleanor’s love the crosswords and by the animal themes in the book.

There is a gorgeous, original watercolour of an elephant holding a yellow tulip by Tara Pastro because Eleanor hates tulips.

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