A Sweet Reads Box for the longest month: March 2020

I received the March Sweet Reads Box in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. This post also appears on A Year of Boxes.

Anyone else feel like March was 8,000 days long? 🙋‍♀️ Oy vey! I’m doing my best to put one foot in front of the other but a lot of days I feel like I’m stuck in molasses. Hence my spotty posts. Please bear with me, dear readers. Lots of good stuff coming. (Psst: I’m supporting some of my favourite small businesses with some purchases to share with you including a Sweet Reads Box giveaway so watch for that very soon.) Today I’ve got the March box and after that, the latest limited edition. If it’s new to you or you’ve heard of it but you’re not sure what it’s all about, Sweet Reads Box is a monthly subscription box service that’s “me time delivered” with a new novel, something to eat and drink, and a few other products tied to the story or theme.

Sweet Reads Box March 2020 product card

“The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” — Ghandi

Each box opens with a product card with a quote related to the novel on one side and a description of the contents on the other. I like to be surprised so I put it aside to read after I’ve unpacked the box.

Sweet Reads Box March 2020 The Henna Artist by Alka Joshi

And the novel for March? A new release — very new, it only came out March 3! —  The Henna Artist by Alka Joshi. Right up my alley! So much so that I’d bought a ticket to hear the author talk about the book at an event here in Ottawa before I’d even read it (it just sounded so much like something I’d enjoy). The day after the March Sweet Reads Box arrived the event was postponed 😭😭😭 but I was so happy to have the novel to read.

Here’s the description from the publisher:

Vivid and compelling in its portrait of one woman’s struggle for fulfillment in a society pivoting between the traditional and the modern, The Henna Artist opens a door into a world that is at once lush and fascinating, stark and cruel.

Escaping from an abusive marriage, seventeen-year-old Lakshmi makes her way alone to the vibrant 1950s pink city of Jaipur. There she becomes the most highly requested henna artist—and confidante—to the wealthy women of the upper class. But trusted with the secrets of the wealthy, she can never reveal her own…

Known for her original designs and sage advice, Lakshmi must tread carefully to avoid the jealous gossips who could ruin her reputation and her livelihood. As she pursues her dream of an independent life, she is startled one day when she is confronted by her husband, who has tracked her down these many years later with a high-spirited young girl in tow—a sister Lakshmi never knew she had. Suddenly the caution that she has carefully cultivated as protection is threatened. Still she perseveres, applying her talents and lifting up those that surround her as she does.

It’s in my TBR stack for this month (I’ll start it as soon as I finish The Honey-Don’t List and Rules for Being a Girl) so I’ll have to get back to you with some thoughts. Have you read The Henna Artist? What did you think?

Sweet Reads Box March 2020 henna temporary tattoo

Next, a temporary henna tattoo c/o the publisher, Harper Collins Canada. My tween and her friends love to draw on each other’s hands with henna pens (well henna-like, anyway) so this has her name all over it.

Sweet Reads Box March 2020 lavender cookies

Lavender Shortbread (Sprucewood Handmade Cookie Co) Lavender is used by Lakshimi throughout the novel in her treatment of the women she sees. We love these delicious local shortbread cookies with a hint of lavender — igniting your senses with every bite.

Ahhh, so buttery, so fresh! Melt-in-your mouth cookies with a subtle touch of lavender. I loved them.

Sweet Reads Box March 2020 Seduction Organic Chai

Seduction Organic Chai (Tea Leaf Co.) Chai features prominently in Indian culture. We chose this tea to connect to the act of seduction in the novel and Lakshimi’s practice.

If you’ve been following me for a while you know chai isn’t my favourite (I actually have to leave the kitchen when my hubby makes it because I find the spices so strong) so I’ll gift this tea and hope to see a breakfast blend, an orange pekoe or a fruity tea in a future box.

Sweet Reads Box March 2020 Gourmet Village Mango Curry

Mango Curry Dip Mix (Gourmet du Village) The flavours of this dip and scents reminded us of Indian food. We hope you enjoy making this as the perfect snack accompaniment to your read. Serve with vegetables or crackers.

We love Indian food — my kids especially — so this dip mix should be a hit too.

Sweet Reads Box March 2020 V&A travel setSweet Reads Box March 2020 V&A hand cream

V&A Travel Set — Eye Mask, Hand Cream and Lip Balm (Victoria & Albert Museum by Wild & Wolf) The packaging of this product reminded us of the visuals and patterns of the story and the theme of beauty. We hope you will use this set for an upcoming journey, or a day of rest and relaxation.

This gorgeous set couldn’t have come at a better time. Between the dry air in the house and the extra hand-washing I feel like a husk but the hand cream and lip balm are saving my skin. I haven’t used the sleep mask but it feels nice and cool on the eyes. Which would be soothing if I wasn’t worried it would choke me to death in my sleep, ha ha. Anyone else feel that way about sleep masks? Just me?

Sweet Reads Box March 2020 compactSweet Reads Box March 2020 compact inside

Mandala Mirror (Kikkerland) Mandalas are representative of a spiritual journey and the concept that life is never-ending. Translated from Sanskrit to be circle this mirror offers an opportunity for reflection and self-care.

I have a super cute cat-shaped compact from another Sweet Reads Box so I might gift this one, but I do love the colours and mandala design.

Sweet Reads Box March 2020 full contents 1

If ever there’s a time to take care of yourself (or a loved one! or a frontline worker!) with some me-time delivered, it’s now. Sweet Reads Box makes such a thoughtful gift, an “I care” package with all of the work putting it together done for you.

Sweet Reads Boxes are available as a commitment-free single box or by 3-, 6- and 12-month subscription. I know April boxes are sold out, but it’s not too late to order a May box and subscriptions are always available (if you order now you’ll receive your first box in May). Limited edition boxes are also released from time to time (April’s Book Lovers Box just sold out).

Single box: $65.99 + shipping

Three-month subscription: $230.07 including shipping

Six-month subscription: $443.94 including shipping

12-month subscription: $863.88 including shipping

And you can save 10% on three- and six-month subscriptions when you sign up for the Sweet Reads Box mailing list. The co also shares bookish news, discounts and info on upcoming boxes on InstagramFacebook and Twitter.

What else? What else? I think that covers the March box, but if you have any questions please ask away! If I don’t know the answers, I’ll do my best to find them for you.

What do you think of the latest Sweet Reads Box? Are you a subscriber? Have you gifted a box? What would you like to see in the future? Tell me everything!

3 thoughts on “A Sweet Reads Box for the longest month: March 2020

  1. I absolutely LOVED this box!! Those cookies were delicious! The dip, perfectly paired with fresh veggies and the book ….. yes please!

  2. I am always in for a good read and want to do to it with a book in my hand rather than online. I’m getting desperate so pulled out my KOBO and charging it now, for a “just in case I run out of hard copies” .
    This book sounds like a winner and the package includes some nice goodies too. Bring on the shortbread but hold off on the tea – orange pekoe only for me tks. Who can’t use a great hand cream through these desert sand blasted, scrub soaked hands these days! And then the big winner – The Mango Curry – my crackers and veggies are ready if you were willing and able to share.
    Eye masks aren’t my thing and the lip balm would interfere with my ever present red lip liner and lipstick, polished off with a tiny bit of gold….. We all gota do our thing – Right ?
    Great package.- .. please put my name on the list for eventual sharing of the book and as always, love the pics…. Great opening shot…… Your little/big buddy – BEN.
    p.s. nice pink nail polish..- toes and nails
    p.s.s. hope our radio star Lily enjoys the Henna tattoo..:)

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