Review: Coffee and Crime Subscription Box

Having been browsing on Etsy for a while, it’s become my go to website for when I’m bored recently, I found a subscription box that looked like it was perfect for me.

I love a good detective novel, I can go through them so fast, but I have found I end up sticking to the same authors. I like the escapism, especially when they’re ones written and based in the past, I may have multiple copies of Sherlock Holmes books and can go through Agatha Christie’s in a day. I also have a love of subscription boxes, though I haven’t actually bought any as a subscription because so many of them are beauty ones and I really don’t need to add to my stash that never seems to shrink!

I guess that’s one long way to introduce the Coffee and Crime box from the Etsy store with the same name. It’s a subscription box that mixes coffee (or hot chocolate if you message) and some vintage crime novels as well as a few extras. It’s available as a one off or a subscription with a few options available.

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My Recent Favourites from 2020 So Far

The title image for the blog post. Behind the text box is a photo of a range of products spread on a white wood floor background. There's makeup, skincare, books and accessories.

I hope you guys are all doing ok and keeping safe at the moment. I planned on posting this last week but I ended up catching another bug going round, such bad timing! But this week I’ve been much better so thought I’d share some of my recent favourites. I’ll try to keep it short but there’s a bit of everything in here.

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A Book Haul that Kind of Grew: Waterstones and eBay

Books laid out on a white wooden floor. In front is the text box with the post title in it

I have recently had a clear out of some of my books, I was planning on keeping my collection down until I have more room for bookshelves. Apparently that didn’t last long though, at least not when I end up in Waterstones! One of these books has been in my to buy list since it was first published in hardback though so that’s ok to get right?

I did also end up getting a couple of lots of manga from eBay. I have a few manga series that I’m part way through that I started ages ago, if you’re into manga or anime you will realise how long ago this was when you see which ones they are, and I found people selling them in sets on eBay for a decent price. Buying the few individual ones for one of the series could get expensive but I do want to finish them as they are some of my favourite manga and anime series of all time.

This way for the books

Book Review: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban Illustrated Edition, Written by JK Rowling, Illustrated by Jim Kay

The title image for the review. It has a photo of the illustrated version of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban behind a text box.

This illustrated copy of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban is the third in the series written by JK Rowling and illustrated by Jim Kay. These are pretty big books and every page in the standard edition is full colour, unless it’s a sketch style image, with illustrations of the characters and settings of the book. The RRP for these is £30 but they’re available on amazon for under £20

Most people reading this have probably either read the Harry Potter books or seen the movies, so I’m not going to go into too much detail when it comes to reviewing the story of the book. I love the art style that Jim Kay has and already have the first and second books in the Harry Potter series that he has illustrated. These are pretty big books so you get some nice sized illustrations with a lot of detail in there.

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Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and Fantastic Beasts the Crimes of Grindelwald Original Screenplays by JK Rowling

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and the Crimes of Grindelwald original screenplays title image. Behind the text is a photo of the two covers

You may be aware that I love Harry Potter, I’ve loved the books for years and so when I saw these gorgeous hardback versions of the original scripts for the Fantastic Beasts movies I had to get them. I should probably say now that I haven’t actually seen the second one yet so reading the script book was basically a whole book of spoilers for the movie for me. I’m going on a plane soon so hoping they have the second one on there, it’ll make the four hours go a bit quicker.

These two books are the original screen play scripts for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and Fantastic Beasts The Crimes of Grindelwald. If you don’t know, these are the two movies based in the Harry Potter universe about Newt Scamander and set about fifty years before the Harry Potter series starts. He wrote the book Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, which is one of the books in the Hogwarts reading list. The original Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them book was released for charity in the UK and there have been a few variations since, all of them including this written by JK Rowling.

I have a feeling that most people who buy these will probably be doing it to be part of a collection, like me, but I am going to include a bit of a review of them anyway. Don’t worry, no spoilers for the storyline at all and I’ve made sure that photos of any pages are early enough that they won’t give any storyline away or just don’t have any text on them.

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Blogmas 2018, Day 13: My Favourite Christmas Book and Advent Calendars!

On the left is a brightly coloured Christmas tree with Santa and bauble decorationsIn the Funko Pop advent calendar today I added one of the twins to the Weasley clan, I do like how the family is building up. The Holland and Barrett beauty advent calendar is helping increase my essential oils with a base product to add them to. I feel like I need to do some research into this, find out the best combinations, but until then I’ll have fun playing around!

How are we over half way to Christmas in advent? I started wrapping presents today and may have got a bit carried away with it. I always think that Instagram worthy presents look amazing but it would be a waste to buy all the ribbons and things, but then I remembered all of the ribbons I have from various Lush gifts over the years and now my floor may be a mess of ribbons, paper and tape. Also, would it be too much to add spare mini baubles? Asking for a friend 😉

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Book Review: The Last Bus to Woodstock by Colin Dexter

Despite having grown up watching the Inspector Morse TV series with John Thaw and Kevin Whately I realised I’ve never actually read any of the books. As it’s actually hot enough in the UK to feel like a proper summer it tends to mean I end up reading more and nine times out of ten it’s a detective novel so it felt like a good time to see how the books compare. My parents ave the complete set so I decided to start at the beginning and so read The Last Bus to Woodstock, which was first published in 1975.

I’m not sure how popular the Inspector Morse series is outside of the UK, or even in the UK, any more as there hasn’t been a new episode in over 15 years and it’s pretty much only shown on the digital ITV channels as repeats, though it is available on the ITV player if you live in the UK and want to watch some. If you haven’t heard of it, it’s a detective series based on these books by Colin Dexter. It’s based in Oxford and the main characters, Morse and sergeant Lewis, tend to end up with the more unusual murders. The kind that need some different ideas and only really make sense when explained at the end. They’re fairly quiet, as far as murder mysteries can be, and there’s lots of visits to pubs and conversations rather than fast paced action sequences and violence.

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Book Review: Terry Pratchett’s Discworld Colouring Book Illustrated by Paul Kidby

terry-pratchett's-discworld-colouring-book-paul-kidby-7.jpgFans of Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series will probably know that Paul Kidby was the illustrator for the covers of the later Discworld books. Since 2002 he’s been the artist who’s done the covers and art in various books related to the series. The Terry Pratchett’s Discworld Colouring Book is full of line art versions of some of his art. In total there are 77 pages to colour in, 78 if you include the title page and 16 pages of the original full colour art for the line art versions in the book.

This colouring book has images from various stories, along with excerpts from the books themselves on a lot of the pages next to the full page images and surrounded by their own art too so you have the link to the Terry Pratchett works there too. It’s been around for a couple of years, it was first published in 2016, but somehow I’ve missed it. I think it came out just after I’d bought a few too many colouring books and was taking a break but it’s in my collection now.

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A Mini Discworld Emporium Haul

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This is only a small haul but I love the things I got so much I think it deserves a post. For a long time I’ve been a fan of Terry Pratchett’s books, I think I read the first one when I was ten or eleven and since then I’ve reread them and the whole Discworld universe is one I love. If you don’t know the Discworld then this haul may seem slightly odd but hopefully you’ll enjoy it.

I was originally only getting something as a birthday present for someone, who I hope isn’t reading this but I’m not going to mention that thing just in case. When I was on the Discworld Emporium website I had a bit of a look around and found some things I wanted to get for myself, I was actually quite good as I could have spent a lot more with all the figures and things they do. I only got three things but I will be buying more from them in the future.

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Book Review: Death Knocks Twice (A Death in Paradise Novel) By Robert Thorogood

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I’ve already reviewed the first two Death in Paradise books based on the characters from the BBC TV series and by the show’s creator Robert Thorogood. This third book, Death Knocks Twice, was published last year and I’ve been meaning to read it but not quite got round to it until recently.

If you haven’t heard of the TV series this is based on it’s a similar style to Agatha Christie stories in that there’s a murder that seems impossible, often a locked room is involved, and a group of detectives in Saint Marie police station, a fictional Caribbean island, have to work out how it happened. The lead is a British detective in Richard Poole who has some unusual ways to solve the case. This time it’s a murder that looks like a suicide with no obvious motive. As the story unfolds pretty much every member of the family that lives in the estate where the murder happened becomes the main suspect so it keeps you guessing to the end.

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