adventures in post, books, Illumicrate, updates

Book Post of the Week!

Welcome to what I hope will be a regular series looking at the books that came in the post.

They fall into 3 general categories; books I’ve bought, books for blog tours, books for general review.

I’m very lucky to be sent books by publishers to review, especially advanced copies, and I do know that, but I want to share the joy of getting books in the post, it’s just the nicest thing! Books marked with a star have been gifted.

Books I Bought:


I’ve read a couple of other books by this author and enjoyed them. This is the story of Rachel who realises on the morning of her wedding to Dan that they’re making a big mistake. Tragedy strikes and everything changes, can Rachel build a new life and make things right? There’s a dog rescue centre with adorable pooches in there too.


I remember this book being everywhere on Book Twitter when it was published in hardback, so I had to nab this one in paperback. Set in 1781, an abolitionist goes missing and war hero Capt Harry Corsham is asked to investigate.

big sky

The latest Jackson Brodie sees the grizzled PI trying to settle into a routine with his son, dog and sometime girlfriend Julia.

I love the Jackson Brodie series and and really excited to read the newest one in the series. Atkinson is a fantastic writer.

Books for Blog Tours –


I am intrigued by this premise – Jessica has a role on a YouTube series of vlog type videos, a sort of day in the life show, and she’s using this platform to find her mother’s killer. Will she succeed or will she become his next victim? – Blog tour post on 3rd Feb.

dead ringer*

New technology means you can use facial recognition software to find your doppelganger, and possibly meet up. Ella and Jem connect, and both want out of their lives, can they trade places? – Blog tour post 5th March.


The British sci-fi writer created two of the most famous stories in the genre – The Midwich Cuckoos and The Day of the Triffids. But it was a very private man – the author here has taken an interesting direction – focusing on the woman in his life, and through her, discovering him. – Blog tour post 21st Feb.


A Japanese murder mystery – in the 1970s 17 people are poisoned and the killer never answers to justice. The detective in charge of the case, Inspector Teru, believes there’s more to the murders and determines to find the truth. – Blog tour post 1st March.

Books to Review –


Unfinished books live in the Unwritten Wing, a space in Hell, presided over by Claire, the head librarian. Her role includes keeping a close eye on restless stories and their heroes. Claire and her team must track down and escaped Hero before things go wrong.

This looks really fun and as a fan of several books about book characters coming to life and detecting librarians, it’s right up my street, I’m looking forward to reading this.


Historical fiction set in Nazi Germany looking at the lives of ordinary Germans at the end of the war as they attempt to rebuild their lives and atone for their sins, and those of their families.

There’s been a lot of WWII literature around at the moment, some of it good, some not so much. This premise intrigues me, the lives of Germans after the war don’t get written about much it seems, and so this is an interesting angle to look at.


Yetu holds the memories of her people – water-dwelling descendants of drowned pregnant African slaves. These memories are painful and torturous, so Yetu escapes the surface in search of other worlds.

This book sounds both beautiful but also dark, the history of slavery has left deep scars on many people, echoing down the years, and this is an intriguing take on exploring that legacy.


Inspired by real events, set in war torn Syria, written by a pseudonymous journalist, the story of Sami, a young man in the streets of Homs, caring for the stray animals left behind by fleeing refugees.

This is probably going to make me cry buckets, but I think it’s important to read stories such as this, we’re so separated from the people we share this planet with, numb to horror, that these stories, real stories, need paying attention to.

atlas alone*

Earth was destroyed six months ago, living on Atlas 2, a ship following in the chem trails of the Pathfinder, Dee is drawn into a dark world of immersive reality, but people are really dying.

I’ve read two of the other books in this series – which are only loosely connected, and really enjoyed them. This is also really enjoyable and clever, a murder mystery where the person investigating might be the killer.


Emilie des Marais wants to be a surgeon but her mother is intent on sending her to finishing school. Annette Boucher wants more from her life and longs to be trained in magic. When the two cross paths, they swap places and soon become embroiled in a terrible war and conspiracies that threaten everything and everyone they hold dear.

I really enjoyed this book, it was clever, funny, magical and full of fantastic characters. It’s also really queer, which is right up my street. I know this hasn’t even been published yet but I already want a sequel.


Queen Talyien is struggling to hold her fractured country together, then her husband disappears, further destabilising things. Now she must find him and repair the damage done by the past.

This sounded interesting, quite traditional fantasy tropes but with the female protagonist responsible for saving things and rescuing the man.

Others –


I won this in a giveaway on Twitter hosted by the author.

Rumer Cross is the abandoned daughter of an assassin, working for a PI, when she gets kidnapped by mobsters who want a mysterious weapon, one Rumer’s mother supposedly had before she died.

Funny, violent, surprising, Rumer is a kickass reluctant heroine, forced to join forces with people she’d really rather not. It was very fun and I hope there’s a sequel coming.


In 1848 a motley crew of Danes set off to fight the Germans, not all of them will return, and those that do will be changed forever.


The most recent Thursday Next book, which means it’s going to be funny and a bit silly and feature lots of book jokes.

My husband has started randomly bringing home books from the ‘orphan table’ at work – along with odd things including a can of WD40, extension cords and other strange bits and bobs. Luckily the books are usually pretty good.


Illumicrate January 2020 – this will be having it’s own post, but it contained 2 exciting new books. Infinity Son by Adam Silvera and Sisters Grimm by Menna van Praag, both of which I wanted to read so am super pleased to find them in the box.

And that’s my week in book post! Now to get on with my reading!!

adventures in post, books, Illumicrate, lifestyle boxes, reviews

#Illumicrate12 Oh So Criminal

August’s Illumicrate is all about the bad guys, the villains, the anti-heroes.

Kicking off the box is the book – Catwoman: Soulstealer by Sarah J. Maas. This is part of DC’s relaunch of their female heroines, following on from the Wonder Woman book last year. Without getting into all the debate around Maas and whether she’s too rude for YA, this book intrigues me. Catwoman is someone I remember from the reruns of the old 60s Batman series with Adam West, then the Dark Knight’s scene stealing Anne Hathaway version. So I’m interested to see what Maas has done with Selina Kyle.

I love a canvas bag, they’re ever so useful and I have hundreds. This Villains are my Bag number from @kdpletters will be added into the mix.

I’m not a HP fan so this Sirius coaster doesn’t really do it for me. I’m sure however that one of my book club will love it. @katieabey designed it exclusively for Illumicrate.

Darkdawn was one of my favourite books of 2018 so far so this handy little nail file designed by @heyatlascreative is going straight into my bag.

I don’t wear a lanyard to work as I work at home but if I did then I’d be upgrading to this one from @fableandblack to rep the crew from Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo.

This necklace makes me smile – we’re all the protagonists of our own stories but are we also the antagonists in someone else’s? @down_the_rabbithole allows you to play both sides.

I love a good candle and this one will set the atmosphere for my next caper meeting. @elvenwickcandles has made this sparkly number which smells delicious.

A mirror is a handy tool to see who’s following you when carrying out the plan and this one from @reverieandink features a quote from Holly Black.

This art print card by @jamilamehio of Catwoman, Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn round off the box.

There are also a few goodies from different upcoming books but sadly no bonus ARC this time.

I’ve enjoyed the themed boxes we’ve had recently, it brings everything together nicely. This box has a decent mix of bits and bobs which I can see myself making use of.

adventures in post, boxcitement, fun stuff, lifestyle boxes, reviews, stationery

#Boxcitement: Free Spirit 

(Let’s pretend it’s still September for 5 mins) 
Boxcitement’s Free Spirit box is a delight. Full of bright colours and fun shapes. 

Inside the box was all these goodies. 

A wall mountable mini mirror – yay! I really like this, unpacking it made me smile. 

This cute charm bangle – it makes a nice jingle when I walk. 

Raindrop planner clips, these are the cutest things, which I will use to keep various post-its together. 

Personal picnic kit – recyclable cutlery and a cute napkin. 

Art print that is also a planner calendar. 

Memory notepads – to jot those ideas down! 
Teeny backpack pouch and feather keyring. 

Overall I really like this box – especially the mirror and bracelet, less so the single use (but thankfully recyclable) picnic kit. The stationery items are right up my street – paperclips and notepads yes please! 

adventures in post, boxcitement, fun stuff, lifestyle boxes, reviews, stationery

Boxcitement August – Fantasy Island 

I treated myself to a little bit of fun this month with this box from Boxcitement. 

Inside the Fantasy Island themed box are a collection of items to celebrate dreams, fantasies and wishes. 

🦄 unicorn trinket dish

🦄 flamingo pendant 

🦄 eye mask 

🦄 greetings card

🦄 planner pad 

🦄 doughnut pen

🦄 mermaid wrapping paper

🦄 ‘mergoat’ pin 

This box is fun, whimsical and brightly coloured. I really enjoyed opening it all up and seeing all the bits inside. 

adventures in post, food, giveaway, reviews

Letterbox Cake with bakerdays & a giveaway 

What’s in the tin?

It’s a Cake!

My partner turns 30 this week and as we were having his parents over, when bakerdays offered to send me a letterbox cake in exchange for an honest review, I said yes.

The postman delivered a slim brown box which contained a tin and some birthday favours (balloons, candles, blower) as well as a sweet card from the bakerdays team.

Now the cake is quite small but it needs to be to fit through a letterbox! But it is beautifully decorated – you can personalise your cake with a photo, name, preferred message, you name it. And it comes in a range of tasty sponge flavours, which taste great.

And now the reason I’m telling you all this
A giveaway!

You can win the letterbox cake of your choice from bakerdays delivered to your door. Here’s how.

– follow ramblingmads the blog (and on Twitter and Instagram if you aren’t already)

– post a comment telling me what special occasion you’d like to celebrate with a bakerdays letterbox cake. Please include your Twitter handle or email address to make it easy to contact you if you win.

The winner will be chosen at random a week from today Tuesday 27th July 2027.

The cake will be sent to you direct from bakerdays so I will need to ask for some details if you win. This will include which letterbox cake you’d like and your UK postal address (no P.O Boxes). Please see the bakerdays website for cake options.

UK only due to the fact the cake will be sent via Royal Mail.

adventures in post, books, crafty stuff, fun stuff, happy mail, lifestyle boxes, stationery

Fun Stuff in this week’s post 

Crafty Creatives #paperhaul this is a great box for stationery nerds like me. Every month you get a themed box of notecards, stickers or washi tape, notepaper, a notebook and postcards or wrapping paper. 

I ❤Homes #happymail box is a monthly box full of lovely little bits and bobs. There’s a theme and always a selection of things for you, your home and gifts. 

Prudence and the Crow send out a vintage paperback and other book related goodies including library cards, stationery, tea, sweets and stickers in pretty printed envelopes. 

adventures in post, art, crafty stuff, fun stuff, lifestyle boxes, reviews

Box of Lame 

I keep seeing bloggers sharing their Box of Lame snaps on Twitter and Instagram, so I took advantage of That Lame Company’s post-Christmas sale to pick one up and see what all the fuss is about. 

I have to say I’m impressed by the speed of delivery – two days after ordering  (on a bank holiday) and it arrived. 

I was a bit disappointed by the packaging, just a plain brown box. But I guess it’s what’s inside that counts. 

Wax melts, Yankee candle, tree decorations, candle holder. 

Tea bags, sweets, hot chocolate reindeer and marshmallows. 

Art prints

Budget notepad, resolutions worksheets

To do list, motivational postcards. 

This is a really fun cheerful box of goodies. I haven’t bought anything from That Lame Company before but I definitely think 2017 will contain more purchases.  

adventures in post, fun stuff, jewellery

Happy Flair – plants are friends

Happy Flair is a super cheery box of bits and bobs from the team at Punky Pins, one of my favourite indie jewellery and accessories companies. 

You can opt for pin only or full flair, which obviously is very me.  Each month’s box is themed and slipped through the letterbox by the postman. 

This month’s is full of all things green. I love my plants, mostly cacti and succulents, and clearly the Happy Flair team have the same taste in plants. 

Inside the box are stickers, a postcard, pin, necklace, patch and a note card. Each box is different but this may just be my favourite. 

adventures in post, fun stuff, lifestyle boxes, reviews, stationery


Another fun subscription box on the market at the moment is Boxcitement, a themed monthly box full of goodies. 

Inside July’s Wanderlust box there are travel goodies and pretty little treats. 

Tin of travel mints, a mirror keyring, scented soap bar, wooden luggage tag, cloud brooch, earrings, Aloha card. 

World map wrapping paper, travel liquids bag. 

Travel journal, Paris card. 

Everything is beautifully put together and decorated, the earrings are very pretty too. It really makes me wish I was whizzing off on holiday, but a girl can dream, and plan for next summer! 

#paperhaul, adventures in post, art, fun stuff, lifestyle boxes, reviews, stationery

#paperhaul May – weather

This month’s #paperhaul box of beautiful stationery comes illustrated by Canadian Chad Geran.

As always a percentage from each box goes to the charity Postpals, sending letters and cards to sick children .

As suits May’s (mostly) sunny days the contents are themed around Spring and weather.

There are sweet note cards, stickers, washi tape and a notebook. Perfect for brightening up someone’s day.