a hardcover copy of The Scarlet Alchemist sits on a green box. In front of the box, from left to right, are a rectangular black and red box, a small red drawstring bag, a large red drawstring bag, bookmark, bookclub kit, quote card, and small white and red rectangular box. The boxes and bags all have page numbers.
a large red drawstring bag is next to a small red tube-shaped drawstring bag, and a rectangular box. Behind these gifts is a hardcover copy of The Scarlet Alchemist and a small white/red box sitting on top of a green box. The boxes and bags all have page numbers.

The Wicked Apothecary - Full Box

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Enjoy the October 2023 Young Adult box featuring The Scarlet Alchemist by Kylie Lee Baker plus 4 gifts that bring this haunting historical fantasy to LIFE!

About the Book

"A dark and glittering jewel of a book." —Judy I. Lin, #1 New York Times-bestselling author of A Magic Steeped in Poison

"Visceral to the core." —Chloe Gong, 
New York Times bestselling author of These Violent Delights

New from the author of The Keeper of Night comes a YA fantasy duology set in an alternate Tang Dynasty China, where a poor biracial girl with the ability to raise the dead gets caught up in the dangerous political games of the royal family.

Zilan dreams of becoming a royal alchemist, of providing for her family by making alchemical gold and gems for the wealthy to eat in order to stay young forever. But for now, she’s trapped in her impoverished village in southern China, practicing an illegal form of alchemy to keep food on the table—resurrecting the dead, for a price.

When Zilan finally has the chance to complete her imperial exams, she ventures to the capital to compete against the best alchemists in the country in tasks she’ll be lucky to survive, let alone pass. On top of that, her reputation for raising the dead has followed her to the capital, and the Crown Prince himself seeks out her help, suspecting a coming assassination attempt.

The more Zilan succeeds in her alchemy, the more she gets caught in the dangerous political games of the royal family. There are monsters lurking within the palace walls, and it’s only a matter of time before they—and secrets of Zilan’s past—catch up with her.

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Customer Reviews

Based on 3 reviews
Worth it

Book was excellent! Cannot wait for next book in the series to come out! Gifts were nice, worth the price!

Addicting read

I cannot wait until the next book in the series comes out! Such a good read! Gifts are cute

Catherine Trieu
Loved this book

This was my first OUABC box and I am so thrilled. This book made me laugh out loud and gasp in shock. I liked it so much, my husband ended up reading it and loved it too - we're still talking about it weeks later.

The gifts are really fun and reflect what's happening in the story well. My son was excited to see "prizes for reading" and now wants his own box.

Book Clubber Testimonials


I love Once Upon a Book Club. Each month offers a book with a collection of gifts that bring the words on the pages to life. My collection is growing and I even had to purchased new book shelves. I love the boxes!

Mitzi V.
Lake Charles, LA

Once Upon a Book Club is a reader’s delight. The concept of this book box is so unique, it combines your love of reading with the joy opening presents.

Darrie D.
Oceanside, NY

The gifts truly bring the story to life and perfectly match what’s happening in the story. For example-the main character might have gotten a bracelet from her best friend in the story. And then you get that bracelet as a gift! It’s so fun because it’s an immersive experience.

Monique B.
Elmhurst, IL

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