giraffedays [at] gmail [dot] com

Follow on Bloglovin

Subscribe via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive new posts by email.

Featured Posts

  • Fancy Words for the Sophisticated Reader Fancy Words for the Sophisticated Reader Want to spice up your reviews with some fancy-sounding words? Here's a list to get you started.
  • Mosaic: Trends in YA Covers Mosaic: Trends in YA Covers
  • Dystopian Fiction: What is it really? Dystopian Fiction: What is it really? With the glut of so-called dystopian fiction on the YA market lately, it’s clear that many publishers are throwing the label around willy-nilly, perhaps because it sounds better than “post-apocalyptic science fiction”, which is what most of these books really are. But what IS a dystopia, really?
  • Top Ten Books Read in 2011 Top Ten Books Read in 2011 My ten favourite books read last year.
  • On Writing "Reviews", or whatever you want to call them On Writing "Reviews", or whatever you want to call them What is it we book bloggers do here? Are we writing reviews or just sharing our thoughts? What IS a book review, anyway?
  • 6 Fantastic Picture Books 6 Fantastic Picture Books
  • Thoughts on 'The Revenant Past' & the Tasmanian Gothic Thoughts on 'The Revenant Past' & the Tasmanian Gothic



For a full list of my reviews, visit my Review Index.


books on my shelves

2223 TBR

See the full list of my books on Goodreads!

Recently Read

  • getting of wisdom getting of wisdom
  • avery avery
  • silent in the grave silent in the grave
  • house of new beginnings house of new beginnings
  • crow country crow country
  • whites whites
  • valentine valentine
  • only ever yours only ever yours
  • mercy street mercy street
  • red queen - aveyard red queen - aveyard
  • Working Stiff Working Stiff
  • blondes blondes
  • animal people animal people
  • firelight firelight
  • ultraviolet ultraviolet
  • strange the dreamer strange the dreamer




Free Delivery on all Books at the Book Depository

Rating System

Utter crap

It was okay

Liked it but ...

Really liked it




444,895 hits
(since April 2010)

Favourite Books

The Book Thief
Dark Desires After Dusk
No Rest for the Wicked
The Cage of Nine Banestones
Diary of a Wombat
A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian
The Ring of Five Dragons
Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell
The Bone Doll's Twin
Pleasure of a Dark Prince
Rhiannon's Ride Series Books 1 to 3: The Tower of Ravens, The Shining City, The Hearts of Stars
The Red Tree
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
One Foot in the Grave
The Witches
Mister Magnolia

Shannon's favorite books »

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?


It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly meme hosted by Sheila at Book Journey, where we share books read, reviewed, what we’re currently reading and other news.

I’m still in a sick state of shock over the mass school shooting that happened at Newtown, Connecticut last Friday. I have CBC radio on during the day so I heard the news reports as they came in. It’s just that, now that I have a child of my own (17 months old), I feel crimes against children so much more keenly, and personally, than ever before. Those poor parents, those poor children, that devastated community. My thoughts are with them. I honestly can’t fathom how it must feel, to lose a child. I sometimes have vivid imaginings of what it would be like to lose Hugh, but it’s so intense that my brain veers away from it and shuts it down – after all, it hasn’t happened, so it’s a useless, weird thing to indulge in. You just have that fear, as a parent, that now you have something precious to fight for and protect, and you feel the vulnerability. I sincerely hope that this time, people in that country can actually come together and agree to change their gun laws – and invest in mental health care.

On the blogging front, I posted another Shelves Are Groaning post, and got up the December-Iceland linkage post. For myself, I have several choices of books to read for Iceland, and I haven’t quite decided which one to read. I’ll probably end up picking it randomly!

I had a day to myself on Saturday, I went into the city to donate blood and then I was going to see Life of Pi but I really needed to shop for knee-high leather boots (I’ve never owned a pair and always wanted some), which Adam is giving me for Christmas, so I knew it was going to be the last chance I had – so I skipped the movie, went to the Eaton Centre and did some shopping – and found boots! Yay! (I did all my Christmas shopping already. 🙂 )

The weather has been pretty mild and almost warm lately – freaky I know – but very overcast, which always makes me feel like staying on the couch in my pyjamas all day. But I did get out on Sunday as well.

This Friday I’ve got the Classics Book Club pot-luck Christmas dinner to go to – I did quit the book club this year, but I’d been in it for so long and they’re good friends, so when they invited me of course I said yes! Now just need to decide what yummy thing to bring…


I Read:

Meant to Be by Lauren Morrill (YA Romance, 4/5)
The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald (Classics, 5/5)
Inventing the Christmas Tree by Bernd Brunner (Non-fiction: History, 3/5)
The Bite Before Christmas by Lynsay Sands & Jeaniene Frost (Paranormal Romance/Novellas, 4/5)

meant to be great gatsby inventing the christmas tree bite before christmas


I Reviewed:

Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter by Mario Vargas Llosa (Historical Fiction, 3/5)
Thoughtless by SC Stephens (Romance, 3/5)
Meant to Be by Lauren Morrill (YA Romance, 4/5)
Unmasking Maya by Libby Mercer (Chick-lit; Romance, 4/5)

aunt julia thoughtless meant to be Unmasking Maya

when the siren calls
Currently Reading:

I’ve been reading When the Siren Calls by Tom Barry, which I got from Netgalley, but I’m about halfway and my interest is waning. It’s just quite long, a bit slow, and the characters are rather … static. They aren’t really growing or developing and I’m no closer to them now than I was in the beginning. Plus, the story itself isn’t holding my interest. So I think I’ll just stop now.

sendingInstead, I’m going to start reading The Sending by Isobelle Carmody pretty much as soon as I finish this post and get off the computer! I meant to read this last month but have been holding off – I’m just so reluctant for this series to actually end, and sort-of nervous-excited about reading a book I’ve been anticipating for SO long. (There’s one more book in the series after this one, that’s not out yet.)


What’s Next:

I’ve no idea!! I’m a mood reader, and I also have trouble keeping track of books I should be reading, hence my haphazard reading style. I’m leaving this open, and see what I feel like. 🙂


One week till my Christmas holidays start!! I am so looking forward to it – not just because I love Christmas, but because I really need a break and a rest!!

16 comments to It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

  • An Iceland read sounds like the perfect thing for winter – and then Vargas Llosa for summer. I just read your review, by chance i got his novel “The Bad Girl” in an open book exchange, I hope it’s a more capturing read. Have a beautiful reading week~~
    Dorothee recently posted..reading: into classics & across America without moneyMy Profile


    Shannon Reply:

    @Dorothee, It did work out quite well didn’t it? 😉

    I’m very interested to hear what his other books are like; it seems to me that these big literary Nobel winners tend to have just one style, but some books are always going to be stronger than others I think. Hope I didn’t put you off reading it – he’s very entertaining, if that helps!


  • I got some (almost) knee-high boots too, still getting used to them. I like them especially because I’m tall, and I bought some great trousers that are a little too short. Now I just put the trousers in the boots and no one is any the wiser. 🙂

    Hope you’ll enjoy the books – have a great reading week!
    Leeswammes recently posted..It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?My Profile


    Shannon Reply:

    @Leeswammes, Very handy! I had to get some tights/legging-style trousers because I didn’t own anything that would fit inside the boots – I really don’t like skinny jeans, though the only time they look really good is with knee-high boots.


  • Read moar christmas books! I’m always meaning to get The Bite before christmas in fact I even took it out from the library but it’s 3 books in one and I don’t much like anthologies or whatever the case may be.

    here is my take Jackie’s Bookbytes


    Shannon Reply:

    @Jackie, Ha ha! Definitely plan to!! The Bite Before Christmas was only two novellas, and they were quick, fun reads – I definitely recommend it. (Unless there’s another book by the same name?)


  • I was also shocked to learn of the tragedy in Connecticut. Such a tragedy that could have been avoided if the young man had not had access to guns.

    On a lighter note I hope you enjoy your reading for this week.

    Shelleyrae @ Book’d Out
    shelleyrae @ Book’d Out recently posted..AWW Feature: Introducing the shy erotica writer by Lisa WalkerMy Profile


    Shannon Reply:

    @shelleyrae @ Book’d Out, The NRA likes to that line, guns don’t kill people, people do – but it’s pretty hard to commit mass killings like this without them! And what the hell do people need assault rifles and semi-automatic rifles and so on, for? Their only purpose is to kill people, that’s what they’re made for, so you can’t really argue that guns don’t kill people!

    On a lighter note, I am very much enjoying The Sending! 🙂


  • Our country (USA) unfortunately is too stubborn about gun laws. And really, who really needs guns? and as for mental health, the republicans did a number on that years ago, trying to save money. Recently everytime a democrat tries to change the health care system, the two main parties fight against each other so much, that even the changes made recently aren’t enough. It’s maddening. And leads to horrific things like we just went through, and then the media gets crazy with it, blasting all kinds of attention on it, and these incidents are getting more frequent.

    sorry – minirant there – I’m sometimes ashamed to be an American. I didn’t choose these laws or these politics.

    Anyway – on to books

    I’m looking forward to winter break – maybe I can get more reading in. I hate when a book gets very slow for me, or never really picks up from a slow beginning. I’ve given up on quite a few books lately because of slow beginnings. And then there’s the fast reads – like Ilona Andrews, Suzan McLeod, etc….that make reading such a pleasure. 🙂
    Mardel recently posted..Win a copy of Summer Break Blues – linkMy Profile


    Shannon Reply:

    @Mardel, It’s part of the culture there, isn’t it – very entrenched. I appreciate your mini-rant, Mardel, and it’s always reassuring to hear from an American who’s sight isn’t clouded by hate and fear!

    I’m hoping to get more reading done too, though I have lots of yummy things to make too (truffles, bread, gingerbread house etc.) which is fun but time-consuming. I’m going to mostly indulge in the fast reads – got loads on the Kindle that I should make time for, especially. 🙂


  • Being a parent changes so much, doesn’t it? I’ve had a hard time these past few days not crying every time I look at my five year old…
    Enjoy your books this week and enjoy the holidays with your family!
    Lindsey recently posted..It’s Monday and it’s almost Christmas?My Profile


    Shannon Reply:

    @Lindsey, I definitely feel safer – for myself and my son – living in a country that has tighter gun laws and less gun possession; I think hand guns are legal in Canada but I’m not entirely sure; but gun ownership isn’t very common here, and back home in Australia only rifles and shotguns are allowed, for farmers and hunters – only the police have weapons. It’s nice knowing that your neighbours don’t have guns! In Toronto it’s a problem of gangs, and occasionally innocent people get caught in the crossfire – in very public places – but those people having guns wouldn’t save anyone.


  • Can I just copy and paste everything Mardel said?

    I hope you enjoy your new boots, they sound fab!

    Happy reading 🙂
    Jennifer recently posted..Liebster Blog AwardMy Profile


    Shannon Reply:

    @Jennifer, She said it well! I just heard that in Virginia they want teachers to carry guns – gee, guns in the classroom, now there’s a good idea!

    I’m itching to wear the boots already, but I have to wait till I officially get them on Christmas day! 😛


    Mardel Reply:

    Thanks everyone – unfortunately, I just heard on t.v. that there is already a school in Texas where the teachers with permits are able to have guns in the classroom. Let’s hope no one gets hold of them, or that the teacher doesn’t panic and shoot the wrong person one day.

    Too bad that some solutions are being sought out of fear instead of practicality and wisdom. Let’s get some more mental health care, for the moms dealing with mentally ill children, and for others who hear voices. Let’s hope that angry, verbally and physically abusive parents get help so they don’t raise more abusive people. That’s what is really needed.

    If we should have learned anything by now, we all should have learned to treat others with respect and kindness – kindness goes a long ways. I’m going to take a second look at my own behaviour, and try to watch how I say things to children and others. I’m not an ass, but I’ve had moments of frustration during the years of working with children (there are some who will drive you batty) but if I work at it, I can find patience with almost anyone. Let’s all pray to whoever we pray to that the future brings less of this violence and more kindness and consideration to others. I wish the media would focus more on things like that instead of feeding into the negative attention these shooters and murderers get – it’s like a insane form of glorification when they focus so much on the perpetrator.
    Mardel recently posted..Black Blade Blues by J.A. Pitts – reviewMy Profile


    Shannon Reply:

    Very well said, Mardel.


Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>




CommentLuv badge