#Read about Guest #Author Michelle Eastman

Read here about this marvelous author and her book “The Legend of the Dust Bunnies”

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

Michelle Eastman
Hello, and thank you for the opportunity to introduce myself. I am Michelle Eastman, author of The Legend of Dust Bunnies, a Fairy’s Tale. I love kids’ books, especially children’s picture books. I enjoy getting lost in the magic of the words as they flow into the illustrations.

I published my first book in November 2014. My son is the inspiration behind the main character, Artie, who collects and cherishes items most of us would see as junk. Here’s a bit more about the story:


Artie has a hard time finding his place among the other Dust Fairies. He wants to be accepted, but he isn’t willing to change who he is to do that. Artie’s loneliness, and odd habit of collecting discarded debris, leads him to create something legendary. His legendary creation helps him find his own special place among the Dust Fairies.


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Catch this interview with an Archangel…”MICHAEL, PATH OF ANGELS”


There is only one path.

Born mortal along with his three brothers, Michael is an Archangel with a specific role: hunt fallen angels and send them back to Hell. He is determined in his mission, never straying from his appointed path, until he meets Lake Divine, and discovers there may be more to his beliefs than blind duty.

But Lake is not who he seems. Offspring of a human and a fallen angel, a Nephilim, Lake must choose his own destiny: give in to the coldness and embrace the dark, or seek the light and rise above the sins of his father.

Two paths lay before them, but only one has the potential to destroy them both.

To Purchase Michael, Path of Angels:  on Amazon

My Review of this Book

Genre: New Adult Urban Fantasy/LGBT

Michael learns at age 16, that he is the reincarnation of the Archangel Michael and that his best friends, (they were born minutes apart) are also Archangels. The four of them, Zadekiel (Zade), Jophiel (Joe) and Gabriel (Gabe) and Michael (Mike) have been assigned to seek out escaped, fallen angels and their earthly offspring and send them back to Hell.
They do get some heavenly help for this mission. There is a twist to this plot when Michael meets 17 year old Lake. Lake grew up with a less than ideal mother, the victim of bullies and other nasty encounters.
Reader, do be aware that this book contains scenes of a sexual nature between males, some consensual, some not. Note the LGBT addition to the genre.
I liked the author’s character development, especially of Michael, Lake, and Lake’s mother. They evoked my emotions and had me cheering for Lake, the underdog.
The storyline had nice flow and was easy to follow.
I enjoyed this book and would heartily recommend it. 4.5 Stars!

An Interview with the character, Michael
1––Let’s start with the basics. Tell us a bit about yourself and what makes you tick.
Michael: I am a reincarnated archangel. It’s my duty to find fallen angels and send them back to hell. There’s not much more to my life than that.
2––Do you have any hobbies, favorite TV shows, books? Anything you fangirl/boy over?
Michael: I suppose I’d sound like a religious fanatic if I said the Bible. It’s not my favorite book anyways. When I was younger I was a big fan of The Hobbit. Always imagined going on an adventure. Which I am on now. There’s no dragon at the end of this journey though and I’m not sure it will ever end.
3––What is one thing from your past you’re most proud of?
Michael: There isn’t one thing I can specify. My past is full of few regrets and lots of happy memories.
4––Let’s play favorites:
Pepsi or Coke?
Michael: Coke. Fizz lasts longer.

Pie or Cake?
Michael: Cake. Got some?

White or dark chocolate?
Michael: Dark. Mmmm.

Playstation 4 or Xbox 1or WiiU?
Michael: Haven’t played any of those. Too busy hunting fallen angels.

Paperback book or ebook?
Michael: I prefer the feel of a real book in my hands.

Summer or winter?
Michael: Summer. The grass, the flowers, it reminds me of Heaven.

Puppies or kittens?
Michael: How can you chose? They’re both cute and cuddly.

Vampires or werewolves?
Michael: Werewolves. They seem the lesser of the two evils.

Introducing the Author


Patricia Josephine

Patricia Josephine never set out to become a writer. In fact, she never considered it an option during high school and college. She was all about art. On a whim, she wrote down a story bouncing in her head. That was the start of it and she hasn’t regretted a moment. She writes young adult under the name Patricia Lynne.

Patricia lives with her husband in Michigan, hopes one day to have what will resemble a small petting zoo, has a fondness for dying her hair the colors of the rainbow, and an obsession with Doctor Who.

Twitter: https://twitter.com/plynne_writes
Website: http://www.patricialynne.com
Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/108938106639683446081/posts/p/pub
Wattpad: http://www.wattpad.com/user/patricialynne07
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/13460894.Patricia_Josephine

Let’s Go Home, Little Bear

. Let's go home, Little Bear

Listen and watch the story book here.

Three cheers for this wonderful picture book from Martin Waddell. This book is also a warm tale of togetherness, and a powerful message of the grown up providing a protecting and caring environment. I remember times with my own children, when going out for walks in the woods. There are some strange sounds there and if you have no idea what made those sounds, it can be rather scary. In this book, I like how Big Bear told a story about those sounds at the end of the book.

About the Author: Martin Waddell His series on Little Bear and Farmer Duck are his most famous, but Mr. Waddell has written many, many other books as well (214+). Under his own name he publishes mysteries, ghost stories, light comedies, and picture books for children. As Catherine Sefton he has written more complex, emotionally charged books for young adults, several of which are ghost stories while others are political novels.
To see more of Martin Waddell’s books, visit his Amazon Author page.

About the Illustrator: Barbara Firth Her lifelike drawings has make these books a favorite of mine. They are some of the very few children’s books I have found to depict life like bears. These drawings are soft, soothing and winsome. Barbara Firth began drawing when she was three years old. Since then, she illustrated numerous award-winning picture books, including the Big Bear and Little Bear series, written by Martin Waddell. She lived in Middlesex, England.
To see more of Barbara Firth, visit her Goodreads page.

Enrichment Activities

Cause and Effect
The sun melted the ice – dripping sound
The sun softened the snow on the tree branches – plopping sound
Big Bear’s feet walking through the snow – plodding sound

Compare and Contrast  City and Forest Environments


City Environment photo credit: en.wikipedia.org


Forest Enviroment Photo credit: en.wikipedia.org

Talk About It
What made the plodding sound?
What made the dripping sound?
What made the plopping sound?
What made the woo woo woo sound?
What made the creak, creak, creak sound?

Develop Listening Skills Activities

boy listening

photo credit: quickbase.intuit.com

Help your child to develop their listening and identification skills. These skills are not learned automatically, but re so essential to becoming a good learner. Make learning this skill fun.

What made that sound?
Using Shakers
Use opaque containers and put different objects in them to shake. Some examples for fills could be sand, pebbles, marbles, coins, water, rice. Have your child shake the container to see if they can identify the contents. Somehow mark the bottom of the container so the child can identify if they are correct or not in their guess.
Using a Tape Recorder
Record a variety of sounds from around your house with which your child is familiar. Examples, water running, pouring milk, clock, timer, furnace, washing machine, etc. Have the child try to identify the sound or what made it.

Play Simon Says
This is a fun way to play listen and follow. Child only does an action if the instruction begins with “Simon says”. Take turns being the leader.

A Walk in the Outdoors
No matter if you live in the city or the country, you can take a walk outdoors to identify sounds.


A Walk in the Country Photo Credit: Image ID : 19313825 Copyright : Dave Broberg

Country: birds singing – traffic sounds – gravel under your feet – water in a stream – wind in the trees or grass – geese or ducks overhead


A Walk in the City Photo Credit: Image ID : 19531317 Copyright : Cathy Yeulet

City: What do you hear? -Ambulance – Airplane – Helicopter – dog barking – birds singing – wind in the trees – horn honking – motorcycle – garbage truck – sirens –gravel under your feet – lawnmower – geese or ducks overhead

More Activities for Developing Listening Skills

Listening Activities For Young Children

Do You Hear What I Hear?


Make some listening ears for those times when your child may need a reminder that they need to be using their listening skills!

elephant listening ears with eyes

A fun Elephant “Listening Ears” Photo/Craft Credit: Website: http://bit.ly/1IH4d0G


A fun headband of Just Ears Photo credit: http://bit.ly/1IH5fK5

Can’t You Sleep, Little Bear? Enrichment Activities

A look at Martin Waddell’s Picture Book Can’t You Sleep Little Bear? This is a warm tale of togetherness, and is a powerful message of the grown up providing a protecting and caring environment. A very comforting story for your little one.
About the Author: Martin Waddell His series on Little Bear and Farmer Duck are his most famous, but Mr. Waddell has written many, many other books as well (214+). Under his own name he publishes mysteries, ghost stories, light comedies, and picture books for children. As Catherine Sefton he has written more complex, emotionally charged books for young adults, several of which are ghost stories while others are political novels.
To see more of Martin Waddell’s books, visit his Amazon Author page.
About the Illustrator: Barbara Firth Her lifelike drawings has make these books a favorite of mine. They are some of the very few children’s books I have found to depict life like bears. These drawings are soft, soothing and winsome. Barbara Firth began drawing when she was three years old. Since then, she illustrated numerous award-winning picture books, including the Big Bear and Little Bear series, written by Martin Waddell. She lived in Middlesex, England.
To see more of Barbara Firth, visit her Goodreads page.

Book Cover


This wonderful Children’s Picture Book is for Playschool to Grade Two (3-7 year olds).
We have all had a child who has difficulty sleeping and is afraid of the dark. Big Bear tries to help Little Bear by showing him that the dark is nothing to be afraid of. He lights lanterns, but they are not enough to quell Little Bear’s fear as he can see the dark beyond the light. Big Bear then offers the light of the bright moon and the stars. This is a very comforting story for your little ones, and belongs in every babsitter’s handbag!


Talk About It
Why can’t Little Bear sleep? I wonder why he’s scared of the dark? Ask your little one if they have ever been scared of the dark?
Cause and Effect
Why did Big Bear get the lantern? (because Little Bear was afraid of the dark) Why couldn’t Little Bear fall asleep? (he was surrounded by the dark). Why did Big Bear take Little Bear outside? (to show him the moon and the stars). Did Big Bear taking Little Bear outside help Little Bear sleep?
Compare and Contrast
Big Bear and Little Bear. Day and Night or Light and Dark.
Fact or Fiction
Do real bears sleep in caves?
Do real bears read books or sit in chairs/

bear in den craft

Make a bear in a den picture. Also uses a paper plate. almostunschoolers.com

bear family

Make a paper plate bear family. twoofakindworkingonafullhouse.blogspot.com

Play / Games / Act It Out
Build a cave from blankets and chairs/couch and make a pallet bed on the floor. Have a chair, lantern and a pretend fire. Act out the story with your little ones.
Action Song
“We’re Going on a Bear Hunt”

Book we're going on a bear hunt
Watch as Michael Rosen performs from his book Here
This book can be purchased through Amazon.com

Real Bears and Caves (North American Bears)

 There are only 3 kinds of bears in North America. Black Bears, which come in colours of black, brown and blond/white.  Brown Bears, the coastal version is refereed to as Kodiak and the inland version is called Grizzly.  Polar Bears which come in a yellow/white and are marine mammals.

Polar Bears at play

Polar Bears at play. Note the smaller heads and long necks as well as larger flat front feet; all designed to help them swim.

Polar Bear Cubs in a Snow Den

Polar Bear cubs in a snow den http://www.corbisimages.com

black bears-photo

an adult North American Black Bear


A yearling cup in the den http://www.bear.org

grizzly 4

Brown Bear. Both Kokiak and Grizzly Bears have the hump on top at the shoulders. Ears are smaller and rounded. somerandomphotos.blogspot.com


A cross view of a bear’s den http://www.damncoolpictures.com

Stellaluna, by Janell Cannon

stellaluna book cover

About this Book

This award winning picture book follows the adventures of a lost baby fruit bat.  It a story about individuality, foster parents/families and fitting in.  It is a very clever theme variation of the ugly duckling story.

As a helpless baby, Stellaluna is accidentally dropped by her mother when an owl attacks.  She falls into a birds nest where she tries her best to fit in.  Her bird foster family accepts her as long as she acts like a bird.  She does have the urge to sleep upside down and fly at night however she doesn’t understand why this is.

One day, Stellaluna becomes separated from her bird family.  She goes to sleep the way they taught her with her head up.  Another bat finds her and is very surprised by her unusual bat sleeping position.  He calls the other bats to come see this strange behavior, and as a result, Stellaluna is reunited with her mother.

Stellaluna’s bat and bird families become friends and marvel at how they are both alike and different.

audio-video of book Stellaluna

An Audio/Video Reading

Janell Cannon photo

About the Author

Janell Cannon was born in 1957 and raised in St. Paul, Minnesota, but now lives in southern California. Her picture books have won many awards.  She both writes and, as a self-taught artist, illustrates her own books.  Before becoming a writer, she designed and produced summer reading programs at her local public library.  She loves to cook and experiment in the kitchen as well as learning to become a drummer.

Ms. Cannon’s books carry a theme of unappreciated and fascinating creatures.  She roots for the underdog so writes about creatures that are misunderstood and unpopular with humans.  Stellaluna the bat (1993), Crickwing the cockroach (2005), Verdi the python (1997), Pinduli the hyena (2004) are books with this theme and they will pull at your heartstrings!

Enrichment Activities

Lets learn some facts about real bats.

• Bats are flying mammals.
• While others can glide, bats are the only mammals capable of continued flight.
• There are over 1000 different bat species.
• Bats are nocturnal (active at night).
• Bats ‘see’ in the dark using a special skill called echolocation. Bats make noises and wait for the sound waves to bounce back off objects (an echo), if it doesn’t bounce back then they can safely fly forward. They can tell the distance of various objects by how quickly the sound waves bounce back to them.
• Most bats feed on insects, while others eat fruit and fish
• Some bats live by themselves while others live in caves with thousands of other bats.
• Bats can live for over 20 years.
• Pteropus bats (also known as flying foxes or fruit bats) are the largest in the world.
• Fruit bats hang in trees not caves.
• Fruit bats also slurp a sweet liquid called nectar from fruit blossoms. What happens next makes them very important for healthy forests—and for fruit-loving humans. When fruit bats stop to eat, sticky yellow grains of pollen get caught on their fur. Some of the pollen rubs off onto other flowers that the bats visit. That’s how bats pollinate flowers, which allows the trees to develop fruits and seeds. Those fruits and seeds feed animals from insects to birds to monkeys. And some of them even feed people!


a fruit bat

Fruit bats live in the tropical areas of the world, such as the Middle East, Asia, Australia and Africa. They prefer locations with warm climates because they do not hibernate in cold weather. They wrap their wings around themselves to keep warm even in the warm climate.

Some Crafts to make

clothes pin bat

What you’ll need to make your hanging house bats: instructions here

  • Coffee filters (1 filter per bat)
  • Purple and black water colors
  • Black acrylic paint
  • 2 googley eyes
  • Silver or gold glitter (optional)
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • String

Make a bat flyer

bat flyers

bat-flyers printable page

egg carton bat

or an Egg Carton bat found here

Acknowledgements (my favorite hangman word!) information on the author came from:  http://www.harcourtbooks.com/authorinterviews/bookinterview_cannon.asp and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Janell_Cannon

Photo of bat courtesy of scienceinclusive.com

Ahh Nostalgia – Patricia Lynne, Independent Author

A Wonderful look at Great Children’s Books:

Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

The Very Hungary Caterpillar

Star Wars

as well as more of Patricia’s Childhood memories.  Worth a read.

Ahh Nostalgia – Patricia Lynne, Independent Author.

Celebrating St. Patrick’s Day? March 17 is coming!

Shamrock 1

Sean: “Top ‘o the mornin’ to ya, Liam”

Liam: “And the rest ‘o the day to you!”

Celtic Shamrock It would seem that the origins of the shamrock are lost in antiquity, legends suggest that St. Patrick plucked a shamrock from Irish soil to demonstrate the meaning of the Trinity- Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The plant was reputed to have mystic powers in that its petals will stand upright to warn of a approaching storm. The shamrock is also commonly associated with the symbol of luck. In studying Celtic history, scholars have discovered that the shamrock was a charm to ward away evil. The shamrock remains Ireland’s most famous symbol.From: Symbolism.co

Real Shamrocks

real shamrockReal_Shamrock_By_Lothar_by_Siobhan68



I selected 4  picture books celebrating the Irish and St. Patrick’s Day.

The Night Before St. Patrick's Day

by Natasha Wing: http://amzn.to/1BeMFaE

Natasha Wing puts an Irish twist on a Christmas classic. It’s the night before St. Patrick’s Day, and Tim and Maureen are wide awake setting traps to catch a leprechaun! When they wake the next morning to the sound of their dad playing the bagpipes and the smell of their mom cooking green eggs, they’re shocked to find that they’ve actually caught a leprechaun. But will they be able to find his pot of gold?

bagpipes_blogscottish bagpipes player

Pipes: www.rohanrawat.wordpress.com                                 Player: www.wiki.answers.com

The Leprechaun's Gold

by Pamela Duncan Edwards http://amzn.to/1Fs1rKB

In this classic Irish legend, two harpists — merry-hearted Old Pat and ill-spirited Young Tom — set off for a contest to name the finest harpist in all of Ireland. When Young Tom realizes that Old Pat is truly the better musician, he schemes to be the winner — but he doesn′t reckon with the clever trickery of a mischievous little leprechaun.

Noted picture book creators Pamela Duncan Edwards and Henry Cole have imagined a joyful and fanciful tale with a priceless lesson.

Tim O'Toole and the Wee Folk

by Gerald McDermott http://amzn.to/180u86j

When the evil McGoons trick Tim O’Toole out of his fortune, he teams up with his benefactors, the Little People, to regain his treasure. McDermott’s illustrated books (including Caldecott winner Arrow to the Sun) and animated films have earned him international recognition. Full-color illustrations throughout.

Lucky Tucker

by Leslie McGuirk http://amzn.to/1aTKOhN

When Tucker the terrier wakes up on Saint Patrick’s Day, he gets off on the wrong paw. Nothing is going his way until he rolls in a bed of clover —- a bed of four-leaf clovers, that is, which just happens to belong to a leprechaun! Lucky Tucker! From snatching a falling scoop of ice cream to wrestling with his best friends to getting a whole box of new toys, Tucker is now the luckiest dog around!

An Irish Blessing

Irish Blessing

Child Fun Friendly Crafts

Paper Plate Hat

Shamrock Paper Plate hat

Cute as Ever Paper Plate Shamrock Hat

from BuzzFeed.com

All you need to make this fun craft are paper plates, scissors, and pens

Instructions found here

Paper Plate Leprechaun

paper plate leprechaun

from sassydeals.com

What you need:

  • Green and White construction paper
  • Scissors
  • Glue or Tape
  • Marker
Handprint Leprechaun
Handprint Leprechaun
from sassydeals.com
I think you got this one (on your own)
How about this cute idea?
from happyhomefairy.com

This craft couldn’t be more easy.  It’s just a painted paper plate and some construction paper.

    Add a band to go around the back of the head (soft material) to tie it on.

 Irish Symbols and Meanings

Triquetratriquetra 2

1st from www.symbolism.co   2nd from nightowl-crafts.weebly.com Link not working, may be a closed site.

The Triquetra Knot

This symbol is also known as the trinity knot.  The word triquetra originally meant “triangle” and was to describe triangle-shaped objects. The triquetra is most known for it’s meaning as the trinity (the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit). This meaning was used by the Celtic Christian Church.  The triquetra is a very old symbol and many say it predates Christianity, the symbol represented the Goddess in Celtic lore. The Trinity Knot holds major significance in neopaganism in that it is believed to represent the three stages of the Triple Goddess (Maiden, Mother, and Crone). The triquetra design on the cover of a replica of the Book of Shadows central to the television series Charmed.Modern Pagans use the triquetra to symbolize a variety of concepts and mythological figures. Germanic Neopagan groups who use the triquetra to symbolize their faith generally believe it is originally of Norse and Germanic origins.  This information is from http://www.symbolism.co/celtic_symbols.html


The Triskelion Knot

This symbol represented progress and completion, and was very prominent in Celtic culture.  Looking like a wheel with four spokes sticking out, the triskelion is supposed to represent actions, cycles, and revolutions or competition. Image and text from http://www.the-symbols.net/celtic/

Triskele, triple spiral


The Celtic triple spiral is still found at several Megalithic and Neolithic sites.  The symbol is thought to be so old that it may predate the Celts entirely.  Whatever its origins, many people around the world consider it a symbol of great beauty and mystery.  Image and text from http://www.the-symbols.net/celtic/

Celtic Dancing Video

Awesome Redhead Celtic Dancers

Awesome Redhead Celtic Dancers

Another Blessing

May your heart be warm and happy,
With the lilt of Irish laughter,
Every day in every way
And forever and ever after.

Aknowledgements: Real Shamrock photos, #1 irelands-hidden-gems.com  #2 siobhan68.deviantart.com  #3 formyeyesonly2012.blogspot.com  #4  galleryhip.com  Blessings from http://www.brownielocks.com/irishblessings.html


Snowmen At Night=Celebrating Picture books

March is Picture Book Month

For younger children, picture books are a vital tool for developing pre-reading skills.  Pictures get their attention and engages them in the story.  They assist them to understand the story (comprehension), creating more interaction, leading to greater language development.

This blog will feature several picture books and related crafts, through the month of March.  Enjoy.

Snowmen At Night

by Caralyn Buehner, Illustrator: Mark Buehner

book cover

Watch as this book is read to you and your youngsters:  Snowmen at Night

Have  you ever wondered what Snowmen do at night?  Wonder no more, because this delightful story, told in rhyme,will enlighten you to their nocturnal adventures.   It is my very favorite snowman book!

A bit about the author and illustrator: Caralyn and Mark Buehner  according to their children!

Caralyn Buehner grew up in Salt Lake City, the youngest child in a family of bookworms. She remembers being read to as a child by her mother, and has very fond memories of some children named Sally, Dick and Jane, and seems to remember a dog named Spot. By the time she was in 6th grade, she had perfected the art of undetected nocturnal reading, and had written a chapter of a romance novel. She won state and national awards for her writing in her teenage years, but didn’t plan to be an author.

Her marriage to illustrator Mark Buehner brought some changes. When Mark began illustrating children’s books, he encouraged Caralyn to write. In the past decade they have collaborated on several children’s picture books, and eight children.

Awards: two Utah Children’s Choice Awards, a CBC Children’s Choice Award, Parent’s Choice Award, an ALA Notable Book, and a Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor Award.

Other  Published picture books by Caralyn include: links to Amazon

The Escape of Marvin the Ape (1992)                 A Job For Wittilda (1993)

It’s A Spoon, Not A Shovel (1995)                       Fanny’s Dream (1996)

I Did It, I’m Sorry (1998)                                   I Want to Say I Love You (2001)

Snowmen at Night (2002)                                  Dex: the Heart of a Hero (2004)

Snowmen at Christmas (2005)                          Snowmen at Night, Pop-Up (2006)

Would I Ever Lie to You (2007)                          In the Garden (2007)

The Queen of Style (2008)                                 Goldilocks and the Three Bears (2009)

Snowmen All Year (2012)                                  Snowmen at Work (2012)

Snowmen at Play (2013)                                   Merry Christmas Mr. Mouse (2015)

The majority of this information is from Utah Children’s Writers and Illustrators blog in an author interview.

Snowmen Crafts for Fun

Make a snowman with shaving cream and glue.  It stays puffy and on the paper.

puffy snow paint

Snow Clay – cold to the touch and Oh So Sparkly. It can be used in all sorts of ways; ornaments for a tree, build a snowman, make handprint keepsakes.
snow clay
Snowmen Feet, how fun are they!

snow feet

Toilet Paper Tube Snowmen
Toilet tube snowmen

MARCH-ing Books to Kids…Calling all Book Lovers and Authors to Make a Difference to a Child in Need…

Michelle Eastman Books

According to Reading is Fundamental (RIF), Nearly two-thirds of low-income families in the U.S. DO NOT own books.  That is just plain wrong.  But, we can help fix it.

girl wagon

I believe that every child’s Bill of Rights should be indelibly inked with the right to have picture books read to him/her and to own their very own books.  Many of us take for granted the sacred ritual of cracking open a picture book, and cuddling together while the words and pictures collectively take us away.  You can probably recall having been read to by your parents or caregivers.  You likely hold a special picture book, from your childhood, close to your heart.  And, until now, you’ve probably not given much thought to how profound that experience can be.

Imagine, never having that.

I CAN imagine a child, growing up, never knowing the power of a picture book.  I…

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