So I decided to try out Once Upon A Bookcase for my first bookish subscription box. Once Upon is a monthly subscription box that focuses on book-themed phone cases, plus a few extra bookish gifts. Each month the people at Once Upon choose a theme, and you can select between Girly Girl, Manly Man, and Anything & Everything.  I subscribed for the March box.

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It arrived yesterday, and the theme turned out to be Shakespeare. I recently wrote an essay on Shakespeare’s The Merchant Of Venice, focusing on his most interesting character, Shylock. Also, I am reading Howard Jacobson’s Shylock Is My Name in the Hogarth series. I can’t escape Shakespeare this year.


Okay, here’s what’s in the box:

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A quill feather stylus so I can write on my iPad just like the Bard used to.

A pack of note cards (blank) along with envelopes.

A book phone case (duh) styled after Shakespeare’s Complete Works.

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Extra bonus for me, some lines in the back from my favourite Shakespeare monologue, “Hath not a Jew eyes?” From The Merchant Of Venice, Act 3, Scene 1.

“To bait fish withal: if it will feed nothing else,
it will feed my revenge. He hath disgraced me, and
hindered me half a million; laughed at my losses,
mocked at my gains, scorned my nation, thwarted my
bargains, cooled my friends, heated mine
enemies; and what’s his reason? I am a Jew. Hath
not a Jew eyes? hath not a Jew hands, organs,
dimensions, senses, affections, passions? fed with
the same food, hurt with the same weapons, subject
to the same diseases, healed by the same means,
warmed and cooled by the same winter and summer, as
a Christian is? If you prick us, do we not bleed?
if you tickle us, do we not laugh? if you poison
us, do we not die? and if you wrong us, shall we not
revenge? If we are like you in the rest, we will
resemble you in that. If a Jew wrong a Christian,
what is his humility? Revenge. If a Christian
wrong a Jew, what should his sufferance be by
Christian example? Why, revenge. The villany you
teach me, I will execute, and it shall go hard but I
will better the instruction.”

Oh, I almost forgot. It also included an awesome theatre mask!


I’m quite happy with this box! I definitely recommend it. At Once Upon they have a huge variety of cases for your phones, and if you’re a bookworm you have to have one of these cases. You can check them out at their website, as well as on Instagram, and check out other people’s boxes at the hashtag #onceuponabookcase.