I received January’s Sweet Reads Box for free to review but all opinions are still my own.
I know I gush a lot about Sweet Reads Box (if it’s the first you’re hearing of it, it’s a Canadian subscription box for book lovers that includes a novel and a few treats tied to the story) but when January’s arrived this week, I was so happy with it (it’s so me!) that I was like, “Is it my birthday?” As it so happens, today is my birthday and lucky me, I get to share one of my favourite things with you! Thanks to Kerrie and Mark at Sweet Reads Box, one try small things reader is going to win a January box of their own! Let’s see what’s inside.
Each box comes with a card with a quote on one side and a guide to the contents on the other. The quote is a hint about the theme or through-line of the story. This month’s is one from J. K. Rowling: “It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends.” (Ooooh! Interesting!)
Okay now I was floored when I saw this month’s book. It’s been on my must-read list since first reading about it in last July’s Canadian Living magazine so I am thrilled to have my own copy! (And just in time for Florida!) Mitzi Bytes by Canadian author Kerry Clare is about a woman with a secret online identity — biting blogger Mitzi Bytes — and what happens when someone threatens to out her. Here’s the description from the book:
Back at the beginning of the new millennium, when the Internet was still unknown territory, Sarah Lundy started an anonymous blog documenting her return to the dating scene after a devastating divorce. The blog was funny, brutally honest, and sometimes outrageous. Readers loved it. Through her blog persona, “Mitzi Bytes,” Sarah not only found her feet again, but she found her voice.
Fifteen years later, Sarah is happily remarried with children and she’s still blogging, but nobody IRL (in real life)—not even her husband or best friends—knows about Mitzi. None of them knows that Sarah has been mining their deepest feelings and confessions and sharing these stories with the world with a dose of biting judgment—which means that Sarah is in serious trouble when threatening emails arrive from the mysterious Jane Q. Guess what, the first one says. You’re officially found out.
As she tries to find out Jane Q’s identity before her secret online self is revealed to everyone, Sarah starts to discover that her loved ones have secrets of their own, and that stronger forces than she imagined are conspiring to turn her world upside down.
A grown-up Harriet the Spy for the digital age, Mitzi Bytes examines the bonds of family and friendship, and the truths we dare tell about ourselves—and others.
“Whether you’ve thought about starting a blog, know a blogger or wondered what life was like behind the scenes you will enjoy Clare’s writing and admire Sarah’s strength. A fun read to brighten a January day.” — Sweet Reads Box
I know Kerrie and Mark wanted to feature more novels by Canadian authors so I’m glad to see them doing that here, and I’m always interested in reading books about and/or by bloggers (in this case it’s both, as Kerry Clare is also a blogger herself) so I’m thrilled with this month’s selection. I can’t wait to get into it!
Milk chocolate is my favourite, so this Smooth Operator bar by Makers & Merchants will disappear fast. And it’s fair trade too, which I think many subscribers would appreciate.
“Sarah might think she’s a smooth operator,” say Kerrie and Mark, “but she quickly finds out she can’t keep her secret for long.”
I like apple chips too and these ones by Martin’s happen to be drizzled in chocolate and gluten free. What’s more, January’s box comes with two bags!
“The perfect snack while blogging, or the on-the-go snack for a busy mom and kids like Sarah. Healthy and sweet tied into one.”
Um, how did Kerrie and Mark know I have a thing for notebooks?
“We imagined Sarah keeping one of these handy for taking notes for blog posts and more! Keep yours handy for those times when you need to jot down reminders or writing inspiration.”
(Bonus points: it’s from Vancouver’s I’ll Know It When I See It.)
And just the cutest phone stand you ever did see!
“Sarah is never far from her phone and loves Wellies rainboots,” say Kerrie and Mark.
(The stand is by Fred & Friends.)
And to top it all off, a box of tea from Toronto’s Tealish in Sarah’s favourite flavour. I drink tea morning, noon and night and black tea is my favourite, only Earl makes me hurl. 😦 And that’s not me being dramatic. I literally can’t get it down. Luckily my friend Kirsten loves it so it’ll find a good home.
Earl Grey aside, I am just loving January’s box! A novel I’ve been wanting to read and so many delicious, thoughtfully curated treats! Sweet Reads Box keeps getting better and better!
Now January and February’s boxes are sold out but if you hurry you can still get in on March. Individual boxes sell for $49.99 + $12 shipping (currently shipping in Canada) and signing up for the Sweet Reads Box newsletter will get you a 10% discount on 3- and 6-month subscriptions.
Kerrie and Mark set aside one January box for a try small things reader. (How sweet are they?!) To enter to win it, tell me a novel or a product you’d like to see in a future box in the comment section at the end of this post. (You must comment in order to be eligible.)
For an additional entry, follow try small things on Facebook and share this post, then tell me you did so and your name on Facebook in the comments below.
For a third entry, subscribe to try small things (you’ll find the form to enter your email address on the top right of the blog, under Search) and tell me you did so and with what email address in the comments below. (You can star some of it out like this ***firstname.lastname@example.org if you like and I’ll follow up with the potential winner to confirm.)
And feel free to tweet the following once per day and leave the url for your tweet in the comments below (one entry per tweet). Make sure you’re following try small things on Twitter for your entry to count.
A Canadian subscription box for book lovers! #Win January’s @sweetreadsbox from @trysmallthings • CAN 2/5 https://wp.me/p4xBed-6BG #sweetreadsbox #mitzibytes
The contest is open to Canadian residents excluding Quebec and ends at 11:59 p.m. on February 5, 2017. The potential winner (chosen at random) must respond to prize notification within 48 hours and provide the correct answer to a skill-testing question, otherwise another winner will be selected.
Good luck, everybody! I can’t wait to hear what you’d like to see!