Monthly Archives: December 2016

(Spotlight & Giveaway!) A Heart Set Free by Janet S. Grunst

Be sure to enter for your chance to win today.

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[Back Cover Blurb]

In 1770, Heather Douglas is desperate to escape a brewing scandal in her native Scotland. Penniless and hoping for a fresh start far away, she signs a seven-year indenture and boards a British merchant vessel headed to Virginia.
Widowed planter Matthew Stewart needs someone to help raise his two young children. The tall blonde standing on the Alexandria quay doesn’t look like much after her harrowing sea voyage, but there’s a refinement about her that her filthy clothing cannot hide. Could God be leading him to take this unknown indentured servant as his wife?
When Matthew purchases Heather’s indenture, marries her, and takes her to his farm, she is faced with new and constant challenges. And Matthew wonders if they can ever bridge their differences and make a life together.
It is in the Virginia countryside that Heather begins her greatest journey, one of self-discovery and…

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(Review, Giveaway & Blog Tour!) Meddlin Madeline

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Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Book

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It is my hypothesis that social conventions are created to test our fortitude.

Rockland circa 1900-

As the mayor’s daughter, Madeline Brown enjoys a rich social life that many might envy. But a sharp mind but a growing talent for observation leaves Madeline torn between avoiding social censure and exploring the world around her.

With an aunt who considers higher education and employment equally unsuitable for the mayor’s daughter, there is little to amuse her save endless committee meetings, evening socials, and her favorite pastime: curling up with an exciting detective novel. The temperance and suffrage movements hold little interest for a young woman who has just endured the rigors of her father’s mayoral campaign.

So when a young man shows interest in her friend, Madeline’s interest piques–until his actions hint that he might not be the upstanding gentleman everyone presumes him to be. Unable to ignore her concerns, Madeline finds herself in the middle of an investigation into his character and discovers a side of Rockland she’s never encountered.

Will her new hobby reduce the tedium of her life, or will her “meddling” create tension for herself and her father? Will she be forced to squelch this budding skill of hers or has Madeline finally found her calling in life?

Meddlin’ Madeline: Sweet on You.

Welcome to Rockland’s infancy.

Sweet on You is the first book in the Meddlin’ Madeline Mysteries. Watch for the second book in the series, Such a Tease, in winter, 2017

About the Author

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I am fortunate enough to live in the great state of California (in the Mojave Desert) with my husband Kevin and five of my nine children. My eldest is married with five children, so I have the fun of a son-in-law and grandbabies to enjoy. I’ve graduated six out of my nine children from our home school, and they’re all doing quite well in their lives. My younger children keep me from getting too selfish, and someday I’ll be fully retired as their teacher. I have to say, I’m lookin’ forward to it. Teaching about gerunds was fun the first time… not so much anymore. I salute all of those in the education field. You are my heroes.

When I’m not writing (which I admit isn’t often) I enjoy blogging (a totally different kind of writing, trust me), paper crafts, sewing, smocking, photo editing, and old music. No, really, I like OLD stuff… the Beatles are too newfangled for me. Yeah,I know they’re before my time… but I like stuff before my PARENTS time.

Guest Post from Chautona

The idea for Madeline came while I was searching for photos for another book idea (one I still haven’t fleshed out yet!). I came across an intriguing picture of a girl wearing a bowler and loved it. I wondered who she was and what she was reading. Well… then I turned the page and… wow! Dozens of photos appeared—all in the same general theme. Bowler hat, gloves, late Victorian/early Edwardian clothes…. I could just see her riding through town on a “wheel” and solving crimes. And well, the rest was born. I had to narrow down about twenty pictures to five. I couldn’t do it. So, I did six. I just hope I can limit myself to six.

Fun Facts:

Fact #1:

This is a historical novel, so that meant lots of research. Well, in the sense that it takes place in another period, anyway. Research proved much more difficult than you might imagine. You see, the world was in a state of flux in 1901. Victorian mores gave way way to a new, modern era—a new century! Though an exciting time in history, because everything was in a perpetual state of change, finding truly historically accurate information was almost impossible!

Additionally, the writing style is very different. This is partly due to a quirk of Madeline’s, but it is also because people used broader vocabularies back then. I wrote the book with a style that fit the era. It was difficult not to lapse into modern vernacular or even something a bit more twenties. After all, the series title was inspired by a song from the 1920’s!

Fun Fact #2

This book begins a journey of self-discovery for Madeline. One of the things I wanted most to do with this book was to explore the “birth” of a detective—to show what it might be like for someone to realize that he or she notices things that others don’t. Through Madeline, I explored how people would react to having their secrets exposed, and I tried to show just how difficult it would be to investigate suspicious things without becoming deceitful or putting oneself in compromising positions. It’s easy to assume people would appreciate knowing if they were being taken advantage of, but would they really? Would pride not get in the way of things? I suspect it would.

Each book does have a definite “mystery”. But, these aren’t traditional mysteries. There won’t be a murder until the final book, but each one will increase in difficulty for Madeline and the reader to decipher the truth and will add a new element of danger and self-discovery. Addtionally, there’s an overarching story over the entire series that won’t be resolved until the end.

Fun Fact #3

We have five more books to go! We’re just getting started with Madeline’s adventures. A sneak peek into the rest of the series: we’ll get to learn more about her best friend, Amy. I haven’t decided just what kind of girl Amy is, but I suspect she’s quite beautiful. I think that’ll play a part in a future book. She’s also likely to meet someone in her European tour. Will she be the friend with the suspicious letter in book four? Who knows? Not me!

Madeline’s Unofficial Glossary

One of the best parts about writing this series is playing with words that I grew up using and reading, but most people don’t use anymore. I had parents of a literary turn of mind, so I grew up being told to, “Slow down and enunciate.” This began at age 3. So, while other kids were told to “go potty,” I was told to “use the facilities.” I’ll never forget in second grade telling a classmate, “That’s your prerogative,” when she said, “I don’t like you.” She was… confused, I think.

Add to that the fun slang of the day, not to mention a quirk I’m not giving away, and I can honestly say I had a blast writing this book. However, I know not everyone is fond of sesquipedalian words or erudite language. So, with that in mind, I decided to write this glossary of words you will find in the book. Please note: definitions are mine and written with my tongue super-glued to the inside of my cheek.

Diffidence: noun

  • Pretending to be reserved in an attempt to hide the truth. Desperate. A misguided notion that pretending not to notice someone will create interest.

 

Vicissitude: noun

  • The quality of never being able to make up your mind. A woman.

 

Multi-eloquent: adjective

  • The misguided notion that one must be like Nellie Olson in These Happy Golden Years and allow one’s tongue to go “flippity-flop.” Example: Gossips are often multi-eloquent.

 

Jitney: noun

  • Slang for a nickel. Also, a horse-drawn “cab.” Because it has fewer syll–nope. Not that. Because people like to confuse one another in speech. “Hey, do you have a jitney?” Gee… let’s see. I’ve got a nickel, but I left my horse and carriage in my other pants at home…

 

Copacetic: adjective

  • Doesn’t matter, because I had to remove it from the book. I didn’t read the entire dictionary entry when I chose the word, and only saw 1880 mentioned. Alas, the first known use is 1919. Eighteen years after this book takes place. I consider the coiner to be tardy, and would appreciate that in the future, words be coined by the dates I need. Thank you. (Do you see the amount of research I must do. I have to check if words were even IN USE before I use them. And I still almost flubbed it.)

 

Recalcitrant: adjective

  • Madeline… wait. That’s not quite right. But close enough. Okay. Madeline Brown when she has a bee in her bowler. Resisting authority or convention.

 

Dialogue de sourds: noun (French)

  • Literally: a worthless conversation where both parties speak to a glass wall, hearing only themselves. Example: political conversations, theological conversations, ideological conversations, Facebook wall “discussions,” and arguments with toddlers.

 

Asinine: adjective

  • Ridiculous or silly–like the assertion that someone saying the word is using foul language.

 

Penurious: adjective

  • Marked by an inability to part with money. A lickpenny. (see how I did that?)

 

Scintillating: adjective

  • A word meaning amusing or extremely interesting that lends itself more to sarcasm than plain speaking.

 

Hawkshaw: noun

  • A nosy person who gets away with it under the guise of “helping.” Sometimes known as a detective.

 

Fustian: noun

  • Um… yeah. This glossary. Madeline does lend herself to the fustian.

There you go. It’s just a taste of what’s ahead. Happy reading!

Blog Stops

December 13: Bigreadersite

December 13: Jeanette’s Thoughts

December 13: History, Mystery & Faith

December 14: Daysong Reflections

December 14: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations

December 14: Baker Kella

December 15: Back Porch Reads

December 15: Moments Dipped in Ink

December 16: Pause for Tales

December 16: Quiet Quilter

December 17: cherylbbookblog

December 17: A Baker’s Perspective

December 18: ASC Book Reviews

December 18: Book Bites, Bee Stings, and Butterfly Kisses

December 19: Reading Is My SuperPower

December 19: A Greater Yes

December 20: Lane Hill House

December 20: A Simple Life, really?!

December 21: Books for Christian Girls

December 21: Reader’s cozy corner

December 22: Two Girls and a Book

December 22: Blogging With Carol

December 23: His Grace is Sufficient

December 23: 1983

December 24: Neverending Stories

December 24: Carpe Diem

December 25: Bibliophile Reviews

December 25: The Scribbler

December 26: History, Hope, Laughter & Happily-ever-after

December 26: For The Love of Books

December 26: Ashley’s Bookshelf

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Chautona are giving away a $25 Amazon gift card! Click the link below to enter. Be sure to comment on this blog post to claim nine extra entries in the giveaway! https://promosimple.com/ps/aa59

Review:  Meddlin Madeline Sweet on You by Chautona Havig. I loved this book by Chautona Havig. You will fall in love with Madeline. This was such a refreshing read for me. I am looking forward to reading more books by Chautona. Be sure to order your copy today. 4 stars! I received a complimentary copy of this book. This review is my honest opinion.

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Titus Returns by Amy Lillard

Titus Returns is A Wells Landing Romance by Amy Lillard.  Amy sure knows how to write a story that will grab your attention and not let go. Characters that seem so real with what they have to endure. This is a story of heartache, pain, faith, trust, love, longing and acceptance. Titus’s story will surly take you on an emotional roller coaster ride. Be sure to order your copy of Titus Returns by Amy Lillard today. 5 stars!

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https://amywritesromance.com/

https://www.facebook.com/AmyLillard918/

https://twitter.com/AmyLillard918

https://www.instagram.com/amylillardauthor/

 

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Charlie the Tramp by Russell Hoban

Be sure to leave a comment for your chance to win a copy!
Be sure to leave your name and email address. Email address can be in the (DOT) (COM) format.

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ABOUT THE BOOK 

Charlie the Beaver wants to be a tramp when he grows up. “Tramps don’t have to learn how to chop down trees and how to roll logs and how to build dams. Tramps just tramp around and have a good time. Tramps carry sticks with little bundles tied to them. They sleep in a field when the weather is nice, and when it rains they sleep in a barn.” Charlie sets off with his bundle. But when he hears water trickling, he can’t get to sleep. Will he be able to resist the urge to make it stop? As Grandfather Beaver says, “You never know when a tramp will turn out to be a beaver.” 

 

An American classic is back in a special 50th anniversary hardcover edition. 

 

Winner of the Boys Club of America Junior Book Award, 1968. 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

Russell Hoban…

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The Amish Christmas Kitchen (Giveaway & Review!)

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To purchase your own copy, click here.

About the Book

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The Christmas Bakery at Huckleberry Hill

When shy Katie Rose Gingerich’s dat sends her to Huckleberry Hill to secure a marriage proposal, she never expects to long for carefree Titus Helmuth—or to hope that he might want to spend every Christmas with her . . .

About the Author

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Jennifer Beckstrand is the bestselling Amish romance author of The Matchmakers of Huckleberry Hill series for Kensington Books. Huckleberry Summer was nominated for the RT Book Reviews Reviewer’s Choice Award and the 2015 RITA® Award, and Huckleberry Hill won the 2014 LIME Award for Inspirational fiction. Both Huckleberry Hill and Huckleberry Christmas appeared in Examiner.com list of top ten inspirational books for 2014.

Jennifer has always been drawn to the strong faith and the enduring family ties of the Plain people and loves writing about the antics of Anna and Felty Helmuth. Jennifer has a degree in mathematics and a background in editing. She and her husband have been married for thirty years, and she has four daughters, two sons, and four adorable grandchildren, whom she spoils rotten.

Guest Post from Jennifer Beckstrand

What do you get when you combine Anna and Felty’s earnest grandson, Titus, with a pretty girl who’s practically engaged to someone else, a sleigh full of Christmas bakery orders, and two mischievous Christmas goats?

A wild, wacky, and wunderbarr Christmas, that’s what.

Anna and Felty Helmuth are determined to make this the most romantic Christmas ever on Huckleberry Hill, but have they bitten off more than they can chew trying to match their slightly scatterbrained grandson Titus with timid Katie Rose Gingerich? Titus tends to be a little thick in the head when it comes to love, and Katie Rose is too shy to open her mouth. It might take every potholder Anna can knit plus a determined goat and a little Christmas magic to bring Titus and Katie Rose together.

Titus would do anything for his Mammi Anna, even eat her very bad cooking and learn how to knit, but why does he have to be the one to care for Mammi’s new goat? Goats give him the willies. But when Titus meets the pretty girl staying with his grandparents for Christmas, he doesn’t mind the goat so much. The more he sees of Katie Rose’s gentle ways and loving spirit, the more he wishes he were the kind of boy she would bake a pie for. Can he convince her to love him without offending her boyfriend? And will Mammi notice if he gets rid of her goat?

After I wrote Huckleberry Hearts, I just knew there had to be someone special out there for Titus Helmuth, Anna and Felty’s lovable grandson. Christmas is the perfect setting for “A Christmas Bakery on Huckleberry Hill” because Titus is one character who seems to have the spirit of Christmas in his heart all year long. When Katie Rose is homesick, Titus does his best to make her feel welcome and comfortable on Huckleberry Hill. He delivers her Christmas goodies, writes poetry for her, and sings Christmas songs. When he finally realizes he loves her, he’s going to have to use both Christmas goats and every trick in the book to convince her to marry him. It’s a fun, heartwarming, wonderful-gute Christmas romance.

“A Christmas Bakery on Huckleberry Hill” is in The Amish Christmas Kitchen novella collection, and it will definitely get you in the Christmas spirit. Enjoy and Merry Christmas!

Blog Stops

December 15: Daysong Reflections

December 15: cherylbbookblog

December 16: Karen Sue Hadley

December 16: Jeanette’s Thoughts

December 17: Quiet Quilter

December 17: Moments Dipped in Ink

December 18: The Power of Words

December 18: A Greater Yes

December 19: Christian Bookaholic

December 19: Lighthouse Academy

December 20: Neverending Stories

December 20: D’S QUILTS AND BOOKS

December 21: Reading Is My SuperPower

December 21: Autism Mom

December 22: Bigreadersite

December 22: Splashes of Joy

December 23: Blossoms and Blessings

December 24: A Baker’s Perspective

December 25: Eat, Read, Teach, Blog

December 26: Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner

December 26: Southern Gal Loves to Read

December 27: Bibliophile Reviews

December 27: Donna’s BookShelf

December 28: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Jennifer is giving away three copies of Huckleberry Christmas. Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post to earn 9 extra entries in the giveaway! https://promosimple.com/ps/acec

Review:  

This is the best book yet by Jennifer! What a wonderful delight that it is to read this Christmas book. Lot of laughter and cheering your favorite characters along in this book.  This story deals with forgiveness and letting go of the past.  Taking the next step in life.  This story was so well written that I didn’t want to put it down. I am looking forward to any future books that have Anna and Felty in them.

Keep up the wonderful writing Jennifer! 5 stars!

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(Spotlight & Giveaway!) A Heart Set Free by Janet S. Grunst

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[Back Cover Blurb]

In 1770, Heather Douglas is desperate to escape a brewing scandal in her native Scotland. Penniless and hoping for a fresh start far away, she signs a seven-year indenture and boards a British merchant vessel headed to Virginia.
Widowed planter Matthew Stewart needs someone to help raise his two young children. The tall blonde standing on the Alexandria quay doesn’t look like much after her harrowing sea voyage, but there’s a refinement about her that her filthy clothing cannot hide. Could God be leading him to take this unknown indentured servant as his wife?
When Matthew purchases Heather’s indenture, marries her, and takes her to his farm, she is faced with new and constant challenges. And Matthew wonders if they can ever bridge their differences and make a life together.
It is in the Virginia countryside that Heather begins her greatest journey, one of self-discovery and of maturing faith. Here, she discovers that her emotional and spiritual scars bind her far more than her indenture . . .
and love will finally set her heart free.

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Author Bio
Janet is a wife, mother of two sons, and grandmother of eight. She lives in the historic triangle of Virginia (Williamsburg, Jamestown, Yorktown) with her husband and West Highland White Terrier. A lifelong student of history, her love of writing fiction grew out of a desire to share stories that can communicate the truths of the Christian faith, as well as entertain, and bring inspiration, healing, and hope to the reader.

http://JanetGrunst.com http://colonialquills.blogspot.com/ https://www.facebook.com/Janet-Grunst-Author-385405948228216/ Represented By Linda S. Glaz, Hartline Literary Agency

Be sure to enter the rafflecopter giveaway for you chance to win a copy of A Heart Set Free. Make sure that you leave your name and email address in the comments. Your email can be in the (DOT) (COM) format. 

 

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Marlo Schalesky’s ‘Waiting for Wonder’ Blog Tour and Giveaway

Because God’s timing is so rarely our own and we lose the wonder in the waiting of life, desperation strikes, plans backfire, and we begin to wonder why God does not fill the emptiness. Be encouraged to find strength and hope in Marlo Schalesky’s new book, Waiting for Wonder. Journey into the heart of God where you will wrestle with personal questions, think deeply about God’s true character, and learn to appreciate His divine work as you discover your own path to the promised land. Recapture your hope, restore your soul, and renew your vision of a wondrous Savior when you learn to live on God’s time.

Learn the true purpose of waiting on God and living on His timeline and enter to win Marlo’s giveaway.

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One grand prize winner will receive:

  • Two copies of Waiting for Wonder (one for you and one to give to a friend)
  • A KEEP Collective watch set (with a band and watch)

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Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on December 23. The winner will be announced December 27 on Marlo’s blog.

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Scripture Doodle by April Knight

 

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About the books:

ScriptureDoodle: A Six-Week Devotional Experience (David C. Cook, October 2016)

With inspiring exercises and prompts, this unique interactive guide introduces readers to a creative connection between Bible study, artistic expression, and worship.

Often, in the busyness of life, Christians forget that God created them to enjoy creativity. With guided instruction and completed examples, this beautiful book invites readers to draw closer to God through their own art.

More than a coloring book, ScriptureDoodle is a combination of Bible study, creative expression, and artistic community with artwork shared online at #scripturedoodle.

Exploring topics such as being generous, finding rest, and facing grief, ScriptureDoodle gives the heart the creative space it needs. This book stimulates the reader’s imagination and helps integrate God’s Word into everyday life.

Purchase a copy: http://bit.ly/2gUdlHF

ScriptureDoodle God’s Promises: A Six-Week Devotional Experience (David C. Cook, December 2016)

Some of the most incredible stories in the Bible are of God’s promises and faithfulness to His children.

ScriptureDoodle God’s Promises refreshes believers who are feeling burned out or stuck in a rut in their relationship with God. Each of the creative worship prompts in this interactive guide includes biblical encouragement and ideas for worship through art. Artist April Knight includes creative lettering tips, color ideas, and completed examples to inspire readers to respond to promises in Scripture related to trust, faith, and the power of God’s Word in all circumstances.

This unique blend of Bible study and creative expression provides the opportunity to connect with God as Creator in a new, life-changing way.

Purchase a copy: http://bit.ly/2gUhyLR

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About the author:

April Knight is a worship artist based in Asheville, North Carolina. Knight’s work includes live worship painting and leading Scripture Doodle workshops online and at conferences and retreats around the country and internationally. Her family of four is her greatest joy, along with serving alongside her husband at their local church.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Instagram

 

Scripture Doodle is a six week devotion experience that is wonderful for anyone. Are you or someone that you know new to the faith walk? These Scripture Doodle books will enhance that experience for you or them especially the pre-teen or teen in your life. I received a complimentary copy of these books. This review is my honest opinion. 4 stars!

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Wonderful! One Enchanted Eve by Melissa Tagg

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One Enchanted Eve a novella by Melissa Tagg is so wonderful. You get to journey back to the enchanting town of Maple Valley and it’s delightful characters that you have come to know and love. You will also get to meet some new ones. I enjoyed One Enchanted Eve so that I didn’t want to see it come to an end. This story is full of love, hope, longing, faith, and learning to let go of the past. Be sure to get your copy of One Enchanted Eve by Melissa Tagg today. 5 stars!

http://www.melissatagg.com/ 

https://www.facebook.com/AuthorMelissaTagg?ref=hl

 https://twitter.com/melissa_tagg

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Michèle Phoenix’s ‘Of Stillness and Storm’ Bookworm On-the-Go Prize Pack

A tale of troubled love and honorable intentions gone awry—don’t miss Michèle Phoenix’s new intimate and bold release, Of Stillness and Storm. It took Lauren and her husband ten years to achieve their dream—reaching primitive tribes in remote regions of Nepal. When a friend from Lauren’s past enters her life again, the tension of coping with the present while reengaging with the past might be too much. Will it be the family’s undoing?

Take Michèle’s new book with you on your winter vacation and enter to win her Bookworm On-the-Go Prize Pack (because you can’t take a stack of books with you when you travel).

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One grand prize winner will receive:

Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on December 31. The winner will be announced January 3 on Michèle’s blog.

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