The Travelling Reader Review by Nazia – September 2018

I’d like to say a really big thank you to the lovely Michelle for sending me this amazing box to review. I have a passion for both travelling and reading and this unique subscription combines both, as each month you are taken on a wonderful journey across the country!

If you missed my live unboxing, you can catch it here on our YouTube channel:

What is the travelling reader?

The Travelling Reader provides a monthly book subscription box, Fernweh Fiction, inspired by trips around Britain and Ireland. Using the recommended fiction book of the month they gather locally crafted, book-related or place-related products, then parcel it all up for you so that you can take a captivating journey from the comfort of your own armchair. Their Special edition boxes include non-fiction books and are available at separate times. Experience Britain with a book!

What’s in the Fernweh Fiction box?

Each month you will receive a fiction book that is set in Britain or Ireland and at least 4 book- or place-related items which complement your reading experience. You may discover an item from the locality or something from the story itself. Where possible, they aim to source products from locally based suppliers or small business artisans to support the local economy. With Fernweh Fiction there will be a different book and place each month so that you can take many fictional journeys.

How much is it?

  1. Month-to-month recurring, or one-off monthly-themed Fernweh Fiction gift boxes are £35.
  2. Three months prepay is £99.99 (£33.33 per individual box)
  3. Six months prepay is £199.50 (£33.25 per individual box).
  4. Special edition boxes are priced individually.

Use BOX18 for 10%OFF your first monthly recurring box or one-off box.

Or

SEPT18 for 10% OFF special edition boxes.

 

How is the box shipped?

Shipping is £3.99 and sent by Royal Mail Tracked and Signed For delivery which means someone will have to sign for the box when it arrives. This ensures they can track your box from them to you so that, should any delays occur, you can see where your box is on its journey.

Box Theme:

The box I received is the June box and theme is set in the beautiful Cotswolds. Designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) in 1966, the Cotswolds covers 2,038 km2 (504,000 acres) and is the second largest protected landscape in England (second to the Lake District) and the largest AONB. Its boundaries are roughly 25 miles (40 km) across and 90 miles (140 km) long, stretching south-west from just south of Stratford-upon-Avon to just south of Bath. It lies across the boundaries of several English counties; mainly Gloucester and Oxfordshire, and parts of Wiltshire, Somerset, Worcestershire and Warwickshire. The highest point of the region is Cleeve Hill at 1,083 ft (330 m), just to the east of Cheltenham.

Contents:

  • Postcard of Gloucester Docks
  • Destination Departure Date Guide (Contents Leaflet)
  • Born Wild Tea – Born Wild Breakfast Teas

Rise and shine! A premium English Breakfast blend made using the finest Assam and Ceylon whole leaf tea – the perfect start to any day.

  •  Cotswold Heart Tea Towel – Regency Navy Blue

Functional art to dry for!

  • The Cotswold Chocolate Company Chocolate Bar 100g

Based in the heart of The Cotswolds making delicious, fresh, handmade and hand finished artisan chocolates, using only natural ingredients.

  • Kitchen Garden Foods – Organic Raspberry Jam 227g

A mouth-watering jam to spread on warm toasted teacakes. Feeling adventurous? Try serving with cream cheese!

  • Cotswold Lavender – Lavender Sachets 1 bag

A lovely organza bag filled with our air-dried lavender grains.  Put them in your drawers or wardrobe if you can bear to hide them away!

  • Fernweh Fiction Exclusive Bookmark
  • Eve Chase – The Vanishing of Audrey Wilde Book

In the middle of a heatwave, four sisters arrive at Applecote Manor to relive their memories of hazy Cotswolds summers. They find their uncle and aunt still reeling from the disappearance of their only daughter Audrey, five years before. An undercurrent of dread runs through the house. Why did Audrey vanish? Who is keeping her fate secret?

What I thought:

The box arrived promptly via Royal Mail second class signed for in a bright red box. On opening I was greeted with a postcard depicting a decorated watering can in the foreground of the Gloucester docks. On the back a handwritten note addressed to me from The Travelling Reader team which I thought was a lovely personal touch. The rest of the products were wrapped in red tissue paper and sealed with The Travelling Reader sticker, the more delicate items had extra bubble wrapping to prevent breakages. Here is what I received:

Born Wild Tea – Born Wild Breakfast Teas – The BoXession team will tell you, I have a penchant for good tea, and this one combines two of my absolute favourites Assam and Ceylon! It tastes deliciously malty and is strong enough to take with milk and smooth enough to enjoy on its own. This tea is beautiful; it has an intense flavour that really wakes you up. I am totally hooked; this is now my new go to morning hot beverage.

Cotswold Heart Tea Towel – This tea towel is honestly so lovely. Printed with the traditional Cotswold Heart in a gorgeous shade of navy blue, this tea towel will vamp up any kitchen! As a talking point I think it would also look fabulous if it was framed and hung on the wall.

The Cotswold Chocolate Company Chocolate Bar – I may have ‘accidentally’ eaten this all in one go hehe! This bar is lovingly hand made with fresh natural ingredients and using only the finest Belgian couverture. Creamy, crunchy and ridiculously delicious, every bite was a party in my mouth!

Kitchen Garden Foods – Organic Raspberry Jam – Delicately tart & fruity and full of flavour! Not as thick as other jams, but perfect for spreading thinly on toast, mixing with creamy natural yogurt, porridge or adding a little fruity sweetness to a homemade cake. Delicious, flavourful raspberry jam, what more can I say?


Cotswold Lavender – Lavender Sachets –
I don’t usually like lavender, but this smells really lovely. I think this is probably because the lavender is dry that the smell isn’t as intense compared to when it is fresh. The dry lavender is encased in an organza bag that is great to place inside wardrobes and cupboards for a gorgeous waft of fragrance when you open the door. It’s also good for keeping away moths and bugs too – bonus!

Fernweh Fiction Exclusive Bookmark – bookmarks are always handy, and I always appreciate when they’re included, as I have a bad habit of losing or misplacing mine so to have a few spare is always a plus. Unfortunately, this arrived damaged and try as I might I was unable to fix it together as one of the loops was missing. As I wasn’t able to enjoy the product as a whole I did still use the marker part to save the page I was reading.

Eve Chase – The Vanishing of Audrey Wilde Book – The book came wrapped in baby blue tissue paper and sealed with The Travelling Reader red ribbon. This book had me gripped from the very first page, I loved the alternating time lines and being transported between the present and fifty years into the past. It is beautifully written and very descriptive, so it was easy to imagine the idyllic scenes I was reading about. Within the pages are also hidden photographs which was a pleasant surprise and a well thought out way to include visuals for the book. Without giving too many spoilers away the book centers around two families living in the same estate, in the English countryside half a century apart. You instantly become absorbed into the mystery that surrounds Applecote Manor and what happened there fifty years ago. The book starts off at a fast pace but then starts to slow down, not too much that I lost interest though. Here the back story is set up and you are drawn into the beautiful writing of Eve Chase. The pace picks up again towards the end to unveil some unexpected twists and turns. Overall a gripping and enjoyable read!

Verdict:

As a keen reader I love every aspect of this box from the handwritten note to the delicious edibles! I especially love that each month the theme of the box focuses on a specific place and includes gifts either book-related or place-related supporting local UK businesses. Fun, educational and exciting this subscription has it all, from a thrilling new book to tasty artisanal treats, it’s sure to please any enthusiastic reader! You can see the enormous amount of effort the guys at The Travelling Reader have put into this box. It’s definitely a subscription unlike any other, where you can travel across the country without leaving the comfort of your own home. Put the kettle on, snuggle up with your book and let yourself be taken on an English journey of suspense and mystery!

If you’d like to know more about The Travelling Reader you can visit their website or social media accounts:

https://www.thetravellingreader.com/

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Thank you for reading…

Nazia xx

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