Is Owlcrate Worth It – A Complete Review Of The Monthly Book Subscription Service

OwlCrate reviews

If you’re into reading novels and the like, you might have heard of OwlCrate online. OwlCrate is a monthly book subscription box service geared towards adolescent or child-friendly themes depending on what you choose.

We’re gonna take a deep dive into what they offer to see if they’re worth it or not. 

What is OwlCrate? 

Okay, so we called it a monthly book subscription box, but what does that mean? Basically, OwlCrate offers a mystery box with the theme of novels and related accessories.

Depending on the duration of your selections, you will get a mystery box every month until you cancel your subscription. The box includes a new Young Adult or Middle-Grade novel release (depending on your selection), some exclusive content from the author, and some extra goodies in theme with the genre of books, age group, and novel accessories. 

Needless to say, OwlCrate is pretty good for middle schoolers and teenagers. However, the average adult can find some joy from these mystery boxes as well. Since the novels include adolescent themes, it can be a good hit on your nostalgia too!

What options are available?

Currently, there are two boxes available for subscription with OwlCrate. The young adult box is rated for teenagers 14+, and the middle-grade box is for children aged 8-12.

Every month, both boxes follow a theme or genre and provide books and accessories related to that theme. You can look at the theme of the next month before placing your order, and you can cancel your subscription renewal if you dislike the books.

However, it’s recommended to check out the themes you like and try the service for a couple of months. The website also displays the themes of the past months to give you a rough idea of what to expect. Future months remain a secret though, it’s a mystery box after all. 

What’s in the box?

The box contents also depend on your box choice. The Young Adult Box includes a brand new Young Adult Hardcover Release, a handwritten letter from the author, novel accessories from small businesses and artists, a monthly collectible enamel pin, and a monthly magazine. 

What do you get with OwlCrate

The Middle-Grade box on OwlCrate Jr. includes a new release of a middle-grade hardcover, an exclusive letter and signed book or bookplate from the author, an activity book/ a game/ a mini-book, other goodies related to the theme of the month, and a collectible monthly sticker and magazine. 

What’s the price? 

The price of your OwlCrate subscription depends on your selected duration and box choice. Subscriptions are available in 1 month, 3 months, and 6 months durations for both OwlCrate and OwlCrate Jr.

OwlCrate subscriptions cost $32.99 when you renew every month, $95.97 when opting for quarterly, and $185.94 for a  bi-annual renewal. OwlCrate Jr. subscriptions cost  $29.99 every month, $86.97 every 3 months (you save $3), and $167.94 every 6 months (you save $12).

Multiple month subscriptions require a prepay and renew automatically until you cancel. The prices exclude shipping and OwlCrate ships all over the globe. 

At first glance, it might look a bit pricey, but when you consider the quality of the products and everything they offer, it becomes a little justified. Let’s take a more detailed look at the things they offer to make your choice more informed. 

What products can you expect?

Apart from the novel, the author’s letter, and the monthly collectible items, the OwlCrate website shows us some of the accessories or goodies you can expect.

Things like stationery packs, gel pens, bookplates, book sleeves, tin suitcases, badges, mini-books, craft kits, book tins, magnetic bookmarks, ceramic mugs, sticky notes, bags, card games, stickers, wallets, journals, scented candles, bath soaps, posters, ornaments, jewelry, art sets, and many more are possible goodies that you may receive or buy directly from their store. 

What are some good boxes that came out in the past?

We went through a list of themes launched in previous months and selected the most eye-catching and intriguing themes.

We’ll be looking at two examples from OwlCrate and OwlCrate Jr. respectively. 

The ‘Growing Wild’ Theme (November 2020) 

OwlCrate themed books

The theme for November 2020 is our first pick. The theme and the offered products perfectly capture the feeling of an adventure/fantasy story and create the imagery of a magical world inside the box. 

The box included Among The Beasts And Briars by Ashley Poston as the main novel. The novel included a sign from the author and is exclusive to OwlCrate.

The extra goodies included a Reversible Dust jacket artwork by Catherine Peterslund, A flower press inspired by ‘A Darker Shade Of Magic’, a reading planner exclusive to OwlCrate and Blue Star Press, a botany planner sticker pack, a botany postcard set inspired by Lord of the Rings, a dandelion necklace inspired by Wild Beauty with a box designed by Studio Kyra.

This box is an obvious choice simply because of the sheer amount of precious things subscribers received.

Written In The Stars (August 2020) 

OwlCrate subscription examples from the past

The August 2020 Theme is in tandem with the last one, as it encompasses the magic and wonder of the night sky into the box. Star Daughter by Shweta Thakrar was the main novel, signed and exclusive to OwlCrate.

The goodies included a book sleeve inspired by the Starless Sea and designed by The Quirky Cup Collective, A metallic star pen by Team OwlCrate, a clipboard inspired by Aurora Rising and designed by Daphna Sebbane, a bandana inspired by Strange The Dreamer and designed by Fern & Ink, and a Star Bottle Push Pin Set. 

Lost In a Book (July 2020)

OwlCrate Junior example

The ‘Lost In a Book’ theme released in July 2020 was a really good theme on OwlCrate Jr. to get a child into reading.

The magical-looking artwork really grabs the attention of a child and pulls them in. The main book is The Time of Green Magic by Hillary McKay, signed and exclusive to OwlCrate.

The goodies included a ceramic mug inspired by Matilda and designed by Risa Rodil, a book tin inspired by The Chamber Of Secrets and designed by Anne Lambelet, a tassel bookmark with a quote from Beauty And The Beast designed by Kelly Leigh Miller, an activity book with coloring pages and mazes created by Shafer Brown, Susie Ghahremani, Alex Clauss, and Melanie Demmer, Fairytale colored pencil crayons, and a Lost In The Book Collectible Sticker and Pin. 

Bump In The Night (February 2020) 

Magical night moments might be a little repetitive but they’re really eye-catching so, Bump In The Night is the next pick on this list.

The mysterious and magical cover and artwork are sure to grab any child’s curiosity and send them on a creative wonder trip. The main novel was a signed copy of The Midnight Hour by Benjamin Read and Laura Trinder. The author’s letter and other monthly collectible magazines and pins were also available along with goodies that suited the theme.

Subscribers also received a cuddly bat stuffed animal toy by the Wild Republic, a pair of socks inspired by Monster’s Inc. and designed by Alex Clauss, a Monster ClickIt eraser pen by Ooly, a crank-powered LED flashlight, a 100 piece puzzle inspired by Vampire Playground, and designed by Veep Doodles, a Postal bat collectible sticker set designed by Laura Trinder and a Midnight Hour themed bookmark. 

Customer Reviews 

We went through OwlCrate reviews on multiple platforms including the OwlCrate website, Facebook reviews, My Subscription Addiction, and Trust Pilot to provide you with an unbiased review. Let’s take a look at what we found out. 

What’s the average score? 

OwlCrate has an average of 4-4.5 out of 5 stars on all platforms. Most users are satisfied with what they received and there weren’t any reports of damaged items, the few negative reviews they got stemmed from a lack of organization and customization options, which the site should provide. 

Is the quality good? 

The quality of the main novel is always going to be really top-rated and you don’t really have to worry about it.

However, some extra goodies can feel a little cheap but the quality matches the price. There weren’t any complaints about damaged items but one user had a missing item, which is something to make a note of.

The whole list of products for each month is released little by little in the form of sneak peeks on the website; so you can check exactly what you are supposed to receive every month. 

Customer Service

As per the claim of one user, once you have ordered and received a crate, you cannot return it, which is a little problematic.

It is justified, however, as the returns have a chance of being tampered with after being opened. This specific user wanted a refund for not liking the crate though, and not for an incomplete order, which is something to keep in mind.

Looking at their FAQ page, it becomes apparent that canceling your subscription, canceling any unshipped boxes and other related things can be a bit of a headache. 


Apart from the monthly cost of $29.99 or $32.99, the subscription also includes a shipping charge depending on your region.

The shipping fee is $8.99 all over the US. The crate feels a lot more expensive when you factor in the shipping cost per month, which can be even higher if you are ordering from outside the US. It’s something you’ll have to keep in mind as well, especially if you’re planning to subscribe long-term. 

User Personalization

Unfortunately, personalization is something OwlCrate lacks. The idea of a monthly crate makes it hard to achieve, but the site lacks options to change out some of the offered products.

One user suggested that there should be an option to replace goodies because they didn’t consume tea or coffee and it would be a waste for them, which is a valid concern. It’s not a feature right now, but there’s hope it could get introduced. 

The Bottom Line

So, it’s time for judgment. Keeping in mind everything the website offers and what most customers had to say about the service, we come to the conclusion that OwlCrate can be a really good service if you do your research beforehand and check out what you will be receiving. It’s fairly easy to skip a month if you don’t like the products, so you should be fine if you track what you’ll receive every month and if you like the theme or not. 

We hope this review helped you in deciding if OwlCrate is worth it or not. Happy Reading!  


Anand Srinivasan
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