ABOUT ME

Me on top of The Nut at Stanley. February 2011

Hi, I’m Shannon, I was born in Tasmania and grew up on a sheep farm here. I’ve lived around the world since university, in Sendai (Japan) for 3 years, Melbourne for a year and then Toronto for over 7 years. In October 2013 I finally returned home to Tassie to put down roots with my family.

My home library has moved around as much as I have, though it’s so big now that it’s been quite a while since I could fit them all on shelves and see every title. I’m looking forward to being able to do that again!

A qualified English and History teacher for grades 7-12, I’ve worked in administration and ran my own home daycare in Toronto in order to spend more time with my baby boy, Hugh (born 14 July 2011).

You can read more about my love of books and reading, here.

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READING HABITS

My home library consists of well over 3500 books and there’s never enough room for them! I’m something of a compulsive book-buyer and hoarder and hate having to return books to public libraries or friends.

I have an eclectic taste in books. You can expect to find almost all genres on this blog, with the exception of generic mystery/thriller/detective novels and certain kinds of non-fiction. Since I was a teenager, I’ve been a big Fantasy reader, devouring 1000-page bricks in a weekend. University enabled me to really fall in love with my home country and the books set here, and helped open my eyes to other genres and the wider world of literature. Blogging continues that trend.

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ABOUT “GIRAFFE DAYS”

I started blogging on LiveJournal when I first moved to Canada in 2006, and posted my book reviews there. When it became clear that I had outgrown LiveJournal, I eventually moved to this wordpress blog. Since 2006, I have written over a thousand reviews.

Why is my blog called “Giraffe Days”? There’s no interesting answer for you! It’s simply that I’m terrible at thinking up names for things and usually just make something up in a rush. “Giraffe Days” just popped into my head and I liked the sound of these two words together. Then when the by-line also popped into my head, it seemed to make sense: “When you feel like sticking your neck out and reading something new.” By “new”, I was thinking, “different”. As in, outside your comfort zone. Since this isn’t a blog of just literature or just genre fiction, it seemed apt. Also, it reflects my own changing interests as I branch out and pick up more obscure titles.

You can also find me here on Goodreads, on Twitter and on Facebook.

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REVIEWING STYLE

I started reviewing mostly because I was always forgetting what happened in a book. Writing reviews helped solidify things in my head. I maintain a policy of honesty in my reviews: whether I love, like or hate a book, I use the review as a means to understand why. All reviews are my own opinion regardless of where or how I obtained the book. I try to start each review with a spoiler-free premise, likewise my personal thoughts are generally spoiler-free; otherwise, spoilers will be marked.

I love discussing books, especially when people have a different reaction to a book, so I really appreciate comments.

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REVIEW POLICY

I am open to receiving review copies of new titles from publishers and authors, as long as I am interested in the book/s. I prefer to read and review print books rather than e-books; I don’t enjoy the interaction with my electronic reader, it just doesn’t feel right and I hate the font on Kindle. It honestly does affect how I read and how much I enjoy a story, so I try to avoid e-books. When I do review an ARC, whether print or e-book, you are going to get my honest review.

If you want to email me about reviewing a book, please keep in mind the kind of books I tend to read and my interest areas. I do like to try books that are outside my comfort zone, but they still need to interest me! 😀

I can be contacted by email: giraffedays@gmail.com

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The Giraffe Days header was designed by me, using photos of my own books and an image of a giraffe that was floating around the internet (original source not found), that I put together using Photoshop.

17 comments to About

  • I saw your comment over on A Striped Armchair, and I also love owning books. I’m a collector in general, and love surrounding myself with favorite things. I have bookshelves in every room in my house!

    I do feel, sometimes,(and commented thus on Eva’s blog post) that I should curtail my book collecting a bit, since it’s kind of a pain when you move. Or need to dust!

    Your blog looks interesting to me, and I enjoy reviewing books for similar reasons…it helps me remember the books.

    [Reply]

    Shannon Reply:

    Hi Laurel-Rain. It gets very expensive, shipping books around, that’s for sure! I don’t mind though. I figure there needs to be something in life that you hold onto and treasure, aside from loved ones and pets, and we’ll never be able to take our cats back with us so! The books don’t get dusty, but they do get some cat hair on them! There’s no room for dust, they’re so crammed together 😉

    [Reply]

  • Hi, just stopping by from the book hop and took a look around your blog! That is SO awesome that you taught English in Japan! And I have always wanted to visit Australia. I have a book collecting habit, but its on a much smaller scale. I probably have only 50 books I own that I have not read. But I live in a tiny apartment with my hubby so until I have more room, I have to try to monitor my book buying habit haha. Someday I might open my own bookstore…I’m not sure yet. Anyway, I hope you have a great weekend and I love your blog!

    Danielle @ http://www.everylastpage.blogspot.com

    [Reply]

    Shannon Reply:

    @Danielle, Hi Danielle 🙂 I have a fairly small apartment too but that doesn’t seem to stop me! I hope you get to visit Australia one day, it’s spectacular! (I’m biased of course!)

    [Reply]

  • Hi Shannon, have just discovered you. Were you a JET? What part of Japan were you in? My son was a JET for three years in Niigata … anyhow, nice to meet you …

    [Reply]

    Shannon Reply:

    @whisperinggums, No I was with Nova, in Miyagi-ken, which went bankrupt after we’d left (good timing for us eh!). My brother just did two years with JET though, also in Miyagi.

    [Reply]

    whisperinggums Reply:

    @Shannon, Ah yes, I know a few people who were with Nova, though all before that bankruptcy occurred too.

    [Reply]

  • Barbara

    Hi, I just found your blog, looking for stuff about Murray Bail (the subject of my PhD, if things don’t go terribly wrong), fell in love with ‘Leviathan’, and now just wanted to say, well, ‘hi’. Lovely place you created here. 🙂
    Four years ago I decided to join Bookcrossing to let go of some of my books, but instead it only made me acquire loads more…so this year I have established a ‘no buying new books but reading what I have’-policy…which your blog is *really* making me question right now. 😉
    I’ll certainly be back. 🙂
    Barbara

    [Reply]

  • Cathleen

    Hello Shannon, I was on The Book Whisperer’s blog and she included your site, so I clicked on the link. I’ve enjoyed reading what you’ve included about yourself–and I’m looking forward to reading your reviews!
    All the best,
    Cathleen

    [Reply]

  • Love the idea and title of your blog. I look forward to seeing what you will be reading.

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  • Hi! I nominated you for a Liebster Award — it’s a sort of fun award/meme that’s passed around by bloggers. You can check it out here: http://buriedbeneathallthelies.com/2013/05/16/liebster-award-questions-answers-bookish-links/

    [Reply]

  • I love your blog, so you’ve been nominated for the Liebster Award. For more information please see http://wp.me/p2Y7aN-96

    [Reply]

  • Love your blog and dedication to diverse books from around the world Shannon! Will be following along going forward and I’m hoping (though late) to join the Around the World challenge!

    [Reply]

    Shannon Reply:

    Lovely, happy to have you join us!

    [Reply]

  • I’m hoping you might help me track down a book; sadly i recall neither title nor author, but have a good description.

    The story involves a young chinese girl who was adopted due to the “one child” policy. Happily ensconced in her American family, she receives word from her biological older brother about her birth mother’s sickness and impending death. She is torn between returning to china or staying “home.”

    Any ideas?

    [Reply]

    Shannon Reply:

    @karen mulhern, Hi Karen, I’m sorry but it doesn’t sound familiar to me at all! You could try the What was that book? group on Goodreads, if you have an account there. Or sometimes I just type a description into Google and see what it finds. Good luck, hope you find it!

    [Reply]

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