Once Upon A Book Club Box August 2016 Review
Once again this new book subscription box delivers a one of a kind experience that had me diving into a work of historical fiction that I might not have otherwise selected for myself.
The book at the center of this month's box was "The Gilded Years" by Karin Tanabe, a fictional account of what life was like for Anita Hemmings, the first black woman to attend and graduate Vassar, while "passing" as a white woman.
I live in New York State and have visited Poughkeepsie, and lived in New York City for a number of years, making the setting of the story all the more interesting as places I've been in modern times are captured through the lens of history.
The team at OUABCB have once again selected a book that feels surprisingly relevant today as we live an era where public hate mongering is still happening and people are still fighting over the value of a person's life because of their appearance or beliefs. The idea of "passing" is still relevant today within the transgender community, one that as a cisgender white female I've made a point to try and educate myself about.
The items included in this month's box were again a nice blend of gift-like items, and documents that enhance the reader's experience.
The first gift was a charming little clip on hat. Though I'm not sure for what occasion I might where it out and about, I'm tickled pink to be wearing while I write. National Novel Writing Month founder Chris Baty suggests having a hat you wear specifically when you novel, I've yet to find one that suited me, this may be what I wear this November.
The next gift was a mirror and comb set. Again charming, but something I'm more likely to enjoy as a prop than as an actual item of use.
Then there was a telegram from the book recreated, and a recreation of a newspaper page.
The last gift was a portfolio style sleeve for perhaps a tablet or small laptop, or even for documents. Inside was a collection of photographs of the real Anita Hemmings and the Vassar magazine article that inspired Tanabe to write the book.
Discussions about the book will start in September on Instagram.
The teaser for September's box is "vintage circus" and I am crazy excited to see what the book turns out to be, having enjoyed "Water for Elephants" and "The Night Circus".