TBR Mailbox: Making Reading Fun To The Next Level

A weird combination of happiness and frustration stirs in our chest whenever it is time to choose what to read next. Should I pick up that book that has been collecting dust on my bookshelf? But the last book of that trilogy you’ve been obsessing just came out. This kind of situation always make us readers thankful for the invention of the TBR Jar. For those of you who don’t know what a TBR Jar is, TBR means To-Be-Read. It is a jar with random challenges (such as “Book with male protagonist,” “Book set in another planet”) to help you pick the next book you want to read. My first TBR Jar was just a white mug, so TBR Jars like these make me explode in jealousy: 

CollageImageSo then 2 days ago, I realized it was time for a new TBR Jar. However, I want to reach the next level. I just don’t want it to be a jar, I want it to have personality like the books I own. And so Voila! The TBR Mailbox is born. 

CollageImageLike most TBR Jars (In my case mailbox), everything is handmade. My inspiration for the design is base on the following:

spring-daisy-flowers_121946505 The Spring Season

Anna and The French Kiss

Anna And The French Kiss by Miss Stephanie Perkins 

& Last but not the least

Emmy And Oliver

Emmy & Oliver by Miss Robin Benway 

What makes the TBR Mailbox different from a regular TBR Jar? Well, I am glad you are curious. A regular TBR Jar gives you a direct to the point what you should read next, but the TBR Mailbox gives you a challenge to the next level. Since it is a mailbox, I put envelopes instead of roll-up papers, and I divided these envelopes into 3 categories (And yes, the envelopes are also handmade).

IMG_0305Yellow envelopes are for MG books (Middle Graders)

IMG_0307The pink ones are for YA (Young Adult)

IMG_0308The Plain one is for adult fiction

As you can see, there are certain genres written on each envelope, and I will explain later why. Let me just tell you what I will put inside these envelopes.

IMG_0303Inside the envelopes are these cute fusion of Anna and The French Kiss and Emmy & Oliver cards. When you open the envelopes, you’ll see random challenges like: 

IMG_0306(book set in the future) 

So I shuffled all these cards and put them randomly in different envelopes. Now I will put them inside my TBR Mailbox all facing down so I have no idea what color they are.


What I will do is I will pick up a random envelope inside. If I pick up a yellow envelope with the contemporary genre written on it, and inside a card says, “book with male protagonist,” it means I need to pick an MG contemporary book with a male protagonist from my bookshelf. I know it can be tricky sometimes, but books are like that, they can be divergent– they belong in many categories. Isn’t that the fun part? If you notice that there is no genre inside my Adult Fiction Envelope, it is because I chose not to put any since the population on Adult Fiction on my bookshelf is just about 3% I think, so I don’t have that many choices. There is also no card inside, but hey at least I still give them a space in my TBR Mailbox, right? 

So guys, what do you think about my TBR Mailbox? Isn’t too much or is it cute, fun, or challenging? 

PS: Again, I cannot tell you where I bought it because everything is handmade. 


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