Last month, I was approached via e-mail to review a product from one of the stores at CSN Stores. I was running short on space for my massive amounts of books, so I thought it would make sense for me to review a bookcase of some sort. I didn't find a bookcase, but I did find an entertainment cabinet whose dimensions would also work for mass market books. I decided that I would review the Media Cabinet in Espresso by Atlantic.
When the package arrived, I was surprised at how small the box was. It was barely longer than my cat, as you can see from the picture (click picture for larger image). Although the outer shipping box was in good condition, the actual box for the product was a bit banged up. Luckily that didn't affect the product inside because it was packed very snug with lots of styrofoam. If I include the time it took to unpack the materials and to fill it with books after I was finished, it took me about one hour and fifteen minutes to assemble. And that included chasing the cats away because they HAD to know what I was doing. Oh, and the box it came in was a perfect toy for the cats.
All of the panels were labelled with letters and all of the hardware was portioned out. The only tools I needed was a phillips head screwdriver and a hammer. The instructions were very easy to follow. I just have three small complaints. Part of the panelling was peeling off one of the shelves, but it isn't noticeable. The two back pieces don't line up perfectly, so there's a tiny crack that you can see over the middle shelf. This was easily fixed by putting books on that shelf. And the last thing was that after turning my back for a few minutes, one of my cats knocked it over. I don't know how they did it (although I'm assuming the cat tried to jump onto one of the shelves), but it just shows how lightweight the product is that a ten pound cat could bring it down. It is a bit wobbly, but where I placed it in my room should have it leaning against the wall.
Overall, it's the perfect size for mass market books. This worked out great for me since I keep my mass markets separate from my trade paperbacks and hardcovers. I've always hated how my mass markets look so small in regular bookcases, so the skinnier shelves in the media cabinet were the perfect size (CDs, DVDs, or video games would also fit). Although I still prefer the sturdy Ikea bookcase I got for Christmas last year from my dad, this product fits in my room a little better and doesn't dwarf the mass markets. I just have to make sure my cats don't try to climb on it again.