Showing posts with label kids. Show all posts
Showing posts with label kids. Show all posts

Tuesday, 6 February 2018

Month in Review(s) - January 2018

January felt like a month which put a rocket to my secret* blogging powers.





woman reading, sitting on a big '2018'






I don't know why, but I actually really liked the posts I wrote this month! And I'm (finally) beginning to get a handle on the whole 'juggling work, life, blogging, and miscellaneous other stuff' thing.

That said, I've probably just jinxed myself for the year ahead. My life tends to resemble an episode of Milo Murphy's Law sometimes 😅


Wednesday, 31 January 2018

Review Time! - Goodnight, Boy by Nikki Sheehan

Goodnight boy title image with book stack and purple border






heart flourish






Title: Goodnight, Boy

Author: Nikki Sheehan

Genre: Kids (Middle Grade/MG,) Young Adult*, Contemporary**

*YA crossover appeal

**ish


Amazon: UK - USA















Wednesday, 17 January 2018

2017's Top 4 Books (...In The Opinion of Yours Truly)

2017 can't be well and truly dusted off and put back on the shelf* without some input from your favourite Bookish Rebel (moi, ofc,) on the bestest books of the year.




two people with capes and flags acting very victory-ish




This is TOTALLY MY OPINION ONLY.

Obviously, I can only pick from books I've read. And within that only books published in 2017.

Even given those rules, there's a bunch of books that I've read that I didn't include - THAT DOESN'T MEAN I DON'T LIKE THEM!!!!

This is basically a snapshot of the stand-outs. There were loooooads of other books I could've included - promise!

(My Anxiety kicks in when I think I might be leaving someone/something out that deserves recognition - does it show?!)



*Ha, shelf? Books? Hehe! XD




Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Month in Review(s) - November 2017

November was one of those super-busy months where I barely had time to think!


As such, guys, I apologise if I've been a little more AWOL than usual.

I haven't had much chance to be social and all that - so, hi! I am still here! XD





November 2017 calendar image





Wednesday, 15 November 2017

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

Month in Review(s) - August 2017

August. Yeah, August...




August Tea-Cup pic











August, for me, was stressful.

My 88-year-old grandfather was very unwell and ended up in hospital, he's better now but we still have to do a lot to make sure he and my grandmother are safe, happy, and as healthy as they can be.




Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Thursday, 25 May 2017

Comics Wrap-Up - House of the Rising Sun

comics wrap-up title image





Film Trailers



New Spider-Man: Homecoming trailer!!!!!!!

I'm loving the whole Tony-Stark-as-out-of-his-depth-father-figure vibe! :)

Warning: flashing images











Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Mini-Review! (Comics Edition!) - The Sun Dragon's Song #2

The Sun Dragon's Song title image


flower divider







Title: The Sun Dragon's Song #2

Author: Joyce Chng

Artist: Kim Miranda

Genre: Comics, Fantasy, Kids

Series: The Sun Dragon's Song


Amazon:
The Sun Dragon's Song #1: UK - USA
The Sun Dragon's Song #2: UK - USA
Two issue bundle #1&2: UK - USA




Wednesday, 9 November 2016

Reading Roald Dahl in Welsh (Part 2)

You may remember, dearest nerdlets, that I'm attempting to read 5 books in the Welsh language in 2016, using translations of Roald Dahl.

Why Roald Dahl books? Well, a) he's a Welsh author, what could be better? and b) I already know the story, so am less likely to get completely and utterly confused.












So, this time around, it was Matilda.

Turns out Matilda is a damn sight harder than Moddion Rhyfeddol George (George's Marvellous Medicine) - so thank God I know the story in my sleep!





The translator, once again, was Elin Meek, and once again she did a great job.

Since the language is more complex though, this took me a lot longer to read than Moddion Rhyfeddol George - it did feel just a little bit like I was wading through it.





Still, all the more time to notice the quirks of the language that come with reading a book in translation.

Honestly, I really like reading books in more than one language - it definitely brings different aspects to the fore, and makes you look at things through a different lens.

Plus, you notice funny things that make you laugh nerdishly - like that one of the Welsh words for 'that' is hynny - which sounds like honey. This made a lot of sentences with Miss Honey far jollier and more rhyming than they were in the original.






Oh, and another quirk of Welsh? We have no literal word for 'rat.'

Rats are not rats in Welsh, they are simply 'big mice.' Interesting enough to begin with, no?

Combine that with imagery, and, long story short, Mr Wormwood in the Welsh version of Matilda is, in fact, 'big-mouse-faced,' rather than rat-faced ;)

Mouse = llygoden
Rat = llygoden fawr






I personally think this rat/big mouse debacle is a significant act of denial on the part of my ancestors:


"Oi, butt, was tha' a rat?"

"Noooo.... just a big mouse."

"Are you sure? It looked like a-"

"No. IT WAS A BIG MOUSE, OK?"

"Alright butt, duw! Big mouse it is mate."










(Honestly, my head is a weird - and very Wenglish - place sometimes)







So, that was my experience of book #2 - book #3, here I come!






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Wednesday, 2 November 2016

Wonder Woman and the UN

In case you haven't heard it yet - Wonder Woman was named a UN Ambassador for women recently. And some people aren't happy about it.

Now, I totally get why this is an issue for a lot of people. I also get why some people are happy about this announcement.












But - and this is the radical bit - this occurrence is neither the end of the world nor the saviour of humanity.






Let me sum-up a bit for you dearest nerdlets, and show you that all sides have some pretty impressive, and equally valid, points:





Not a 'real' woman


The evidence for the prosecution, m'lady, is as follows:



  • Wonder Woman is fictional - she's not 'real.' There are plenty of non-fictional women who deserve the recognition of this role.

  • She is often over-sexualised. Do we really want little girls looking up to a sex symbol as their role model?







  • The creator of Wonder Woman was a man; her writers and artists are usually men. She is controlled by men.

  • She has no voice of her own - only what people give her. She is a puppet with no agency of her own.

  • Wonder Woman is commercial property - she is owned by DC comics. The UN currently has a women's ambassador who is beholden to commercial interests.

  • Wonder Woman is too American to be a global ambassador.







Seems like there's a real case to be answered against her, doesn't it?






Women are warriors


The defence presents it's case m'lady:




  • Wonder Woman is undeniably an icon with global recognition potential that needs little to no explanation.

  • To many, she seems more real than the 'real' women - your average little girl is more likely to recognise - and relate to - Wonder Woman, than to Angela Merkel; so let's use that recognition for good.

  • Wonder Woman was invented as a feminist icon - someone girls could look up to. This is a reclamation of her original identity - an undoing of the subversion of her original character; she wore a mini-skirt and knew it said nothing about her as a person. It was others who judged her for it.









  • She saves the dude-in-distress constantly. Seriously, that's what she spent the first lord-knows-how-many years of her career doing - saving the useless dude's a*s, so that he didn't get his butt killed.


  • She shows girls that women can be whatever they want to be. A boob-tube and a mini-skirt doesn't make you stupid, weak, or ineffective.






So, valued members of the jury, what do you think? Is the case for or against Wonder Woman strong enough to make a valid judgement?




Here's my take: let's do something really radical, and assume that appointing one UN Women's Ambassador isn't enough! Let's appoint, oh, I don't know - 2 women? 3 women? 5 women? A whole team of women? Lord knows there's enough work for them.




The question shouldn't be: should we appoint a fictional character to this position?

It should be: Can we appoint this fictional character and this activist and this neuroscientist and this CEO and this charity worker and...?

Because Wonder Woman is going to a great job, regardless of who's for her, and who's against her - but why the hell should she have to do this alone?






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Tuesday, 1 November 2016

Month In Review(s) - October 2016

October is over!!! And I'm sure most of you are currently stuffed with sweets and/or chocolate from Halloween.

So, without further ado my dearest nerdlets - let's get this wrap-up started!









October was a pretty cr*ppy month for me, depression-wise, but I'm lucky enough to have a) family, b) The Bestie, and c) all of you guys.

Seriously, I appreciate you guys a butt-tonne! You make me smile :)





And even though someone who I once considered cool - a fellow bookworm in fact - unfollowed me when I tweeted about LGBTQ+ things, the number of people actually doing that has reduced from what was happening last month.

This is possibly because I've put Sexually Fluid/Queer on my Twitter bio - so the a*shole bigots probably aren't following me to begin with.






And the very lastest day of this month saw my two-year blog anniversary! And with over 40k pageviews over all, and over 7k pageviews this month, DORA is still going strong (and I'm so surprised and happy, you honestly wouldn't believe it!)






So, to the books I reviewed this month:




Young Adult




Lies We Tell Ourselves by Robin Talley - historical fiction, LGBTQ+ (F/F)




Adult




Star-Shot by Mary-Ann Constantine - magic realism*, sci-fi* (*ish)



Comics/Graphic Novels





Bread and Butter #1 - contemporary

Thursday, 13 October 2016

Comics Wrap Up - Things Are Shaping Up To Be Pretty Odd






Film Trailers



Marvel made a Doctor Strange trailer that makes 2 different trailers! One when it's played forwards, and one when it's reversed.

It's called 'Strange's Time' (yes, the trailer has it's own title, but to be fair, whoever made it is probably pretty chuffed with themselves right now.)




Here it is played forwards:









Annnnd here it is in reverse:









And just because I like your robot, dear nerdlets, here's the new TV spot for Doctor Strange too:











TV Trailers


Dudes, the next series of DC's Legends of Tomorrow looks EPIC!!!!

As a reminder: this is the series which totally shouldn't work but does - a ragtag spinoff with minor characters from CW's DC pantheon, along with him-off-Dr-Who (otherwise known as Arthur Darvill, here playing Rip Hunter,) and a flying time machine.




We also have one of the only LGBTQ+ superheroes to ever make it on screen (and still be LGBTQ+ - Harley Quinn, Mystique, Loki, et al. had that part of their identity erased when transferred to screen) - the amazing and beautiful Sara Lance, aka the White (formerly the Black) Canary.






Yes, my dearest nerdlets, this looks pretty damned cool:











Graphic Novels


This week I read and reviewed Ghoul Scouts: Night of the Unliving Undead (UK - US.)





This is a fun and zombie-filled kids/all-ages graphic novel, which I enjoyed a helluva lot more than I thought I would!







So that's it for my week in comics, dearest nerdlets: on to the next week!







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Wednesday, 12 October 2016

Review! (Graphic Novel Edition!) - Ghoul Scouts: Night of the Unliving Undead








Title: Ghoul Scouts: Night of the Unliving Undead

Author: Steve Bryant

Contributors: Mark Stegbauer, Jason Millet

Genre: Kids, Horror, Zombies

Series: Ghoul Scouts #1-#4

Release Date: 18th Oct 2016 (US); 20th Oct 2016 (UK)

Amazon: UK - USA





A few starting notes:

I received a free digital review copy of this book via Edelweiss. Edelweiss provides review copies from publishers in exchange for fair and honest reviews.

In honesty, I thought this would just be OK, and nothing more. Turns out, it was really freaking awesome! :)




Premise:

Full Moon Hollow - Paranormal Capital of the World. But of course, those are just stories.

A scout jamboree. Fun, right?

Until the zombies show up, and the remains of two scout groups have to fight to find their way to safety...

What the hell is going on in Full Moon Hollow?





Best bits:

Have you ever thought what would happen when you smoosh a multi-racial Scooby-Doo style gang of kids (unfortunately, without the dog,) into Brian K Vaughn's Paper Girls, with the more family-friendly parts of the film Zombieland?

Nope, me neither. But clearly someone's been thinking about it - because here it is.

And it's really fun!

Bright, spoopy ('spooky' to the purists amongst you,) and with an adventure that really scoops you up and drags you along with it, this is a really involving book.

The artwork was effective - bright, but not too in-your-face.

And the main characters are pretty evenly split between white characters and people of colour (PoCs). Overall, the split may even be slightly in favour of PoCs - depending on who you count as main characters.

It's done well - not forced; it simply is (as it should be.)




Not so great bits:

While the kids were relatively well-drawn characters (in the metaphorical sense - though in the literal sense too, I suppose,) I think they still could do with some character development - though this may be expanded on in continuations of the series.

I also think that things maybe weren't tied up correctly...?

Like, how did the kids explain the zombie attack to the adults? And where the hell did the zombies come from in the first place?

Again, this is possibly just a symptom of first-volume restrictions - and it's entirely possible that this'll get sorted in later instalments.

OK, so I'm nit-picking a little... but someone has to ;)





Verdict:

This was so fun! A well-rounded kids' story (and big kids, like yours truly, of course,) with a diverse cast and zombies!

With room for growth, and perfect for Halloween, I really do recommend this one guys - I enjoyed the hell out of it! :)














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Thursday, 22 September 2016

Comics Wrap-Up - Live Without Warning





TV Trailers



Marvel's Agents of Shield will be back soon! ...With Ghost Rider.

Yeah... I'm hoping this will work but... yeah... it's an interesting choice.








-0-




Also in the category of 'oh God, please don't have taken this a series too far' is the up-coming series of Arrow.

I love Arrow. Like, really love it - but we've already come to several natural endings to this series. So please forgive me for being a little wary of this latest continuation.












Single Issues



This week I wrote a mini-review of The Sun Dragon's Song #1 by Joyce Chng and Kim Miranda (UK - US.)






It's a beautiful book, and a great start to the series. The artwork is truly incredible.







Other Stuff


Annnnd this Toon Sandwich spoof of the Justice League trailer made me laugh.

There's a bunch of random violence - just to let you know.













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Saturday, 17 September 2016

Mini-Review! (Comics Edition!) - The Sun Dragon's Song #1










Title: The Sun Dragon's Song #1

Author: Joyce Chng, Kim Miranda

Genre: Kids, Fantasy

Series: The Sun Dragon's Song

Release Date: 21 September 2016

Amazon: UK - USA





Verdict:

I received a free digital review copy of this book from the publishers, Rosarium Publishing, via NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.

I know I normally write full reviews instead of mini-reviews when I have an ARC, but this is only a single comic issue, so I figured a mini-review would give me enough time to talk about it. :)

This is the first issue in 'The Sun Dragon's Song' series - and it's a promising start.

First off: the artwork. THE ARTWORK. SERIOUSLY, THE ARTWORK.

It's stunningly beautiful. I would frame any page from this book and put it on my wall. Wow. Just... WOW.

I also liked the slow pace to this first issue, it's very gentle, but not at all boring - which I really like.

Pretty much the only criticism I can make of this book is that some of the dialogue felt a little overly-exposition-based, and perhaps a little forced...?

But overall, that really wasn't a big problem. And I'm being a little nit-picky now, I know; but that was really the only thing that I could criticise.

I just hope the rest of the series is this beautiful! Seriously, it's hard to exaggerate just how stunning this comic was visually.

(And dragons! I mean... dragons!!!!!)

Hopefully our little hero will get closer to his dream of being a Sun Dragon Rider, and prove the a**-holes who make fun of his disability wrong! (Yes, I'm invested in this... very much so!)














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Tuesday, 13 September 2016

Graphic Novels With Latinx Main Character/s

I was talking to Naz @ Read Diverse Books the other day, and we kind of had a lightbulb-type moment.

We both love graphic novels, and Naz was interested in reading graphic novels with Latinx main characters.

If you've read this blog before, you'll be aware that I'm a complete comics/superheroes/graphic novels nerd... but we struggled to think of any.






Now, as the major English-language graphic novel publishers are American, you'd think that there would be a little more Latinx representation then there currently is.

Still, I was sure that Latinx main characters must exist out there somewhere - so decided to track them down.
















After a lot of research and much SCREAMING AT THE DAMNED COMPUTER, these are the books I could find (I have no idea whether they're any good, but I found them dammit!):








Fábio Moon and Gabriel Bá

The first of two sets of brothers on this list, Fábio Moon and Gabriel Bá are from São Paulo, Brazil.

Gabriel Bá is also the artist on Gerard Way's Umbrella Academy (I love that series! SO BAD!) So you can be damn sure that these books are now on my TBR.




-Daytripper

Brás de Oliva Domingos is the child of a famous Brazilian author, he dreams of being one himself, but is stuck writing the obituaries of famous people.

Goodreads describes this as  'a magical, mysterious and moving story about life itself.'

Amazon: UK - US


- De:Tales : Stories from Urban Brazil

These are short stories told in comics form - and according to Goodreads are 'Brimming with all the details of human life, their charming tales move from the urban reality of their home in São Paulo to the magical realism of [the authors'] Latin American background.'

Amazon: UK - US

















The Hernandez brothers

Gilbert, Mario, and Jaime Hernandez seem to be the veterans of USA Latinx graphic novels, and have literally decades of work under their belts.




-Love and Rockets

This is a series about (according to our old pal Goodreads) 'three Southern California Mexican-Americans armed with a passion for pop culture and punk rock' which started in the 80s, going on to span many volumes and spin-offs.

(Seriously, I think it's possible to read nothing but this series, and it's related series, for the rest of your life.)

The first volume is 'Music for Mechanics.'

Amazon: UK - US








Marble Season

By Gilbert Hernandez, one of the above creators of Love and Rockets, this is a coming-of-age story about Latinx brothers growing up in 1960s America.


Amazon: UK - US















Julio's Day

A sort-of spin-off from Love and Rockets, Julio's Day is a stand-alone graphic novel from Gilbert Hernandez which shares some of the settings and themes of the Love and Rockets world.

Julio's Day follows Julio from his birth in 1900 to his death in 2000 - 100 years over 100 pages (and yes, I've totally added this to my TBR.)

Amazon: UK - US







Roller Girl

This an 'all-ages' (i.e. kids & people (like yours truly,) who are not ashamed to read kids' books,) graphic novel about Astrid Vasquez, a 12-year-old who has always done everything with her BFF Nicole.

So when Astrid signs up for roller derby summer camp, she figures Nicole will too - except Nicole goes to dance camp with another friend. What will roller derby camp be like on her own?

Amazon: UK - US








City of Clowns

This is a graphic novel version of Daniel Alarcón's story of the same name.

Our protagonist here is Oscar 'Chino' Uribe - a Peruvian journalist who begins documenting the lives of Lima's street clowns, while coming to terms with the realities of his late father's life.

Amazon: UK - US













Anita Blake

This is a graphic-novel-fication (shhh! It's a word now!) of the Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter series by Laurell K Hamilton.

Anita is half-Mexican on her mother's side, and is generally pretty awesome. The first volume (like the first novel) is Guilty Pleasures.

Amazon: UK - US






Mi Barrio

This is entrepreneur Robert Renteria's graphic memoir of growing up in LA, based on his prose memoir 'From the Barrio to the Board Room.'

Amazon: UK - US





Ghetto Brother: Warrior to Peacemaker

This is a biography in graphic novel form, telling the story of Benjy Melendez - a Bronx gang-leader from the 1960s who led the Ghetto Brothers. This is the story of a gang that promoted peace, instead of violence, and managed to bring a gang truce to their area.

I've added this to my own TBR, because the more I read about it, the more I wanted to know!

Amazon: UK - US












Exilia The Invisible Path Book 1

The only graphic novel by Cecilia Pego which I could find in English, Goodreads describes this as a 'dark fantasy and mystical thriller graphic novel saga, originally crafted in ink, watercolor and oil painting.'

It features Exilia - who is apparently expelled from her convent and ends up in a post-apocalyptic quest (as we've all done, at some point in our lives...)

Amazon: UK - US







Ghosts

This is a brand-spanking new all-ages (kids) graphic novel from Raina Telgemeier about two sisters - Catrina and Maya - who move to the coastal Bahía de la Luna because the coastal air is better for Maya's cystic fibrosis.

But Bahía de la Luna has a secret - it's a town full of ghosts. Maya really want to see one. Catrina? Not so much.

Amazon: UK - US


















Mr Mendoza's Paintbrush

Originally a short story, this graphic novel adaptation is about Mr Mendoza - the resident famous graffiti artist of Rosario, Mexico.

The residents of Rosario have a variety of opinions on Mr Mendoza and his satirical art, but rumours and speculation start to fly when a message is painted on the side of a pig: 'Mendoza goes to heaven on Tuesday.'

Amazon: UK - US















Awkward

This was actually already on my TBR. Another 'all-ages' title, this features young protagonist Penelope Torres - known as Peppi.

Peppi has just arrived at a new middle school, she has 2 cardinal rules for survival: don't get noticed by the mean kids, and join groups with similar interests to her own.

But a chance run-in with quiet Jaime Thompson leaves the mean kids calling her 'nerder girlfriend,' and instead of ignoring them, she treats Jaime very badly...

Amazon: UK - US

















Superheroes

You know I like me some powers and capes, so I had to find some Latinx superheroes for this list.

It was more difficult than it should've been - especially since Latinx characters, where they exist, seem to be part of superhero team rather than having their own titles.

I wanted to go with title-characters because there's a guarantee that their story will take centre stage and not be eclipsed by others.

I did find some, so take a look:






Blue Beetle (Jaime Reyes)

This is a DC series about teenager Jaime Reyes who has the powers imbued by a mystical Blue Beetle scarab. (Yeah... just go with it.)

This is technically a legacy character - i.e. another individual has taken up the mantle of a previous superhero - but there are very few people who remember the original 1930/40s character.

The modern Blue Beetle books start with the 2006 run - Vol 1, Shellshocked.

Amazon: UK - US
















Araña/Arana (Anya Corazon)

Meet Anya, a Marvel Latinx Spider-Girl who goes by the name of either Araña or Arana. In all honesty, this one was a surprise to yours truly - I'd never heard of her. Ever.

I don't know whether this is Earth-616 (the main universe/timeline for Marvel) or an alternate universe or timeline (there are a lot of them - hence the requirement to number them.)

The only book I could find for Anya was Arana Volume 1: The Heart of a Spider from 2005.

Amazon: UK - US







Ultimate Spider-Man (Miles Morales)

The Spider-Man of the 'Ultimate' universe (Marvel - multiple universes, gotta love 'em. So many Spideys that it's now known as the Spider-Verse. #TrueStory,) is Miles Morales - a black-Latinx teenager.

This is usually a Brian Michael Bendis (BMB) title, which y'know, usually means pretty good quality. I was disappointed by the small rant against diversity fans earlier this year though :/ I expect better of BMB.

I recommend starting with Miles Morales: Ultimate Spider-Man: Volume 1: Revival (Man, that's a long title!) because previous books in the ultimate series are kind of leading from the Peter Parker of that universe to Miles Morales, so there's crossover (as far as I understand it; really Marvel, if we could stop labelling everything as #1? That would be handy.)

(Yes, Miles Morales - one of the poster-boys for Marvel diversity - is both alternate universe AND a legacy character. Sigh.)

Amazon: UK - US















Nova (Sam Alexander)

Another legacy (i.e. takes up the name of a previous hero,) character, Nova is a dude who flies through space - often with the Guardians of the Galaxy - and also has his own title-series.

You can check him out in Nova, Vol 1: Origin.

Amazon: UK - US





















Ghost Rider (Robbie Reyes)

Yet another legacy character (but, y'know, being the Ghost Rider is basically just being the vessel of the Power of Vengeance, so I suppose that makes more sense,) Robbie Reyes' stint as Ghost Rider began in 2013/2014.

His title-series run begins with All-New Ghost Rider, Vol 1: Engines of Vengeance.

Amazon: UK - US








Vibe (Cisco Ramon)








Played by the amazing Carlos Valdes (I love him!) in the CW series The Flash, Vibe was also given his own DC comics title-series which so far only has one volume - Justice League of America's Vibe, Vol 1: The Breach.

Vibe uses vibrations and inter-dimensional physics to see through alternate universes and timelines (a handy talent in the comics world, let's face it,) and also to move objects, 'blast' stuff, and levitate.

Amazon: UK - US














Coming Up...

There's more good news for graphic novel fans later this year -

La Borinqueña, a new Marvel heroine, will be making her debut in November.

Bread and Butter (issue #1) by Liz Mayorga will also be out later this year (and yours truly will be doing a mini-review.)

And there's an anthology (La Raza Anthology) on Kickstarter which promises great things :)





Ok, my dearest nerdlets, I'm going to go take a long lie down now because you wouldn't believe how long this post took me... phew!




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