Saturday, 27 November 2021

On the Island - Tracey Garvis Graves

Book: On the Island
Author: Tracey Garvis Graves
Genres: Not entirely sure.
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: 28th May 2012

My Rating: DNF @ 62%
Date Finished: 27th November 2021


Anna Emerson is a thirty-year-old English teacher desperately in need of adventure. Worn down by the cold Chicago winters and a relationship that’s going nowhere, she jumps at the chance to spend the summer on a tropical island tutoring sixteen-year-old T.J.

T.J. Callahan has no desire to go anywhere. His cancer is in remission and he wants to get back to his normal life. But his parents are insisting he spend the summer in the Maldives catching up on all the school he missed last year.

Anna and T.J. board a private plane headed to the Callahan’s summer home, and as they fly over the Maldives’ twelve hundred islands, the unthinkable happens. Their plane crashes in shark-infested waters. They make it to shore, but soon discover that they’re stranded on an uninhabited island.

At first, their only thought is survival. But as the days turn to weeks, and then months, the castaways encounter plenty of other obstacles, including violent tropical storms, the many dangers lurking in the sea, and the possibility that T.J.’s cancer could return. As T.J. celebrates yet another birthday on the island, Anna begins to wonder if the biggest challenge of all might be living with a boy who is gradually becoming a man.


So I'll be honest. This has been on my Kindle for 5 years and I've put it off for various reasons including my not liking another book by this author that I read nearly two years ago now, The Girl He Used To Know. But here goes.

This starts with Anna going to the airport for the very long flight to the Maldives with the student she'll be tutoring for several months to help him catch up after missing school due to his illness. Only they never make it. The plane crashes into the sea and they eventually wash up on one of the many islands that make up the Maldives. They have to either adapt to survive, while they wait to be rescued, or give up and die.

I wasn't pulled into this at any point. I expected them to be rescued fairly quickly but it stretched into years of them somehow managing to use the things that miraculously washed up on the island with them - their luggage! - to survive. Anna's suitcase that washed up had what seemed like an almost endless supply of toiletries that they managed to make last them at least two years. It was just so unbelievable. They ended up with a life raft, some inflatable cushions, a guitar, some jewellery they fashioned into fishing hooks...?! They just seemed to be so resourceful for people who'd never camped or anything. Yeah, I get they had to adapt or die but I just wasn't buying it.

It was always rather boring reading them on the island. They were mostly sunbathing and fishing or killing things that wandered too close. And occasionally getting sick. Island life bored me, almost to tears. I was on the verge of giving up with this many times.

The romance just wasn't romantic in any way for me. T.J. as the teenager, I could kind of understand with puberty and all that and admiring the pretty tutor and yeah he might have buffed up after a few years but I wasn't feeling any of that myself. I don't have an issue with age gap romances but there hadn't really been much interaction between them for any sort of spark to grow in my eyes. It just seemed that they scratched an itch. 

I've also noticed the author likes to use real life events in her books, or at least the two I've read now. On the Island has the 2004 boxing day tsunami in it, which is the only way they got rescued. And also the point where I decided to give up. They were finally off the island but I wasn't feeling any kind of spark with this book at all. I've read other reviews where people had read it in 24 hours and three days later I was just barely over half way through? Yeah, that equals me not interested.

I think that after 2 books that I haven't enjoyed that this author is one I'm going to stay away from in the future.

Wednesday, 24 November 2021

Dark Flame - Kat Silver

                                                55207946. sy475
Book: Dark Flame
Author: Kat Silver
Series:Flame Born, #1
Genres: MM Romance, Urban Fantasy, Vampires, Witches, Shapeshifters
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: 6th February 2021

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒœ
Date Finished: 23rd November 2021


"I know who you are because you belong to me. You were born to be mine." ~ Prince Alexei Vasiliev

Haunted by the death of his parents, Michael Blakeley wants answers. The twenty-six-year-old martial artist seeks their killer, but he also wants to know why electronics short out at his touch, and why his libido is a raging fire.

So when a group of soldiers calling themselves Guardians rescue him from a back alley ambush and claim to have the answers he needs, he agrees to go with them. Especially when they tell him the attackers were vampires. But nothing in this supernatural underworld is as it seems, and when the silver-eyed commander cages him instead, Michael's answers slip further away.

Can Michael find safety from the vampire prince who claims him? Can he escape the dark destiny he discovers is written into his blood? And will he break the chains of the commander who keeps him captive? The one man he has no desire to leave?

Dark Flame is the first pulse-pounding book in the Flame Born LGBT urban fantasy series. If you like enemies to lovers, shifters, sexy vampire princes, and scorching heat, you'll love this smoldering tale of bloodlust and magic. There is content some readers may find distressing. Meant for mature audiences.


I honestly didn't know what to expect with this one but it sounded good.

It starts with Michael out at his favourite bar when he's approached by a tall Scandinavian looking man who claims he's there to talk to him. Michael ignores him and is pulled onto the dance floor by a pretty woman who tries to lure him outside and into a trap before he's rescued by the tall man and a small crew who ferry him to safety and explain that he's special. He has what's known as the Flame, a power that allows all supernatural beings to live, and for some reason Michael has caught the attention of the Vampire Prince who wants to claim him as his own.

So yeah, I was confused as to who the romantic interest would be in this. The dashing vampire Prince who did sound rather seductive in those first fight scenes where we first meet him or the commander who calms Michael's Flame with just a touch? Colour me intrigued.

I read this in a day I was that into it! The story was well thought out with betrayal and deception not uncommon. I liked the story line with the vampires against the Guardians as they fought to either protect or control the Flame and the people who wield it. 

The romance was done in such a way that I was hooked on it. It wasn't the main part of the story but it took up a big chunk of what was going on. A sort of will they, wont they and almost happy squeals when they finally just gave in. 

There's still so much that hasn't been explained yet and I am so interested in where this series is going to go that I will definitely be reading more of it when it's released and I can't wait!

Tuesday, 23 November 2021

Heart of Malice - Lisa Edmonds

                                            34963561. sy475
Book: Heart of Malice
Author: Lisa Edmonds
Series: Alice Worth, #1
Genres: Urban Fantasy, Paranormal, Witches, Vampires, Shapeshifters, Magic
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: 27th June 2017

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒœ
Date Finished: 22nd November 2021


The first time Moses Murphy’s granddaughter killed on his orders, she was six years old.

For twenty years, she was a prisoner of an organized crime syndicate, forced to use her magic to make Moses the most powerful and feared man on the East Coast. To escape his cruelty, she faked her own death and started a new life as Alice Worth. As a private investigator specializing in cases involving the supernatural, Alice walks a precarious line between atoning for the sins of her grandfather’s cabal and keeping her true identity hidden.

Hired to investigate the disappearance of a mysterious object of power, Alice enlists the help of Malcolm, a ghost running from a past as nightmarish as her own. It soon becomes clear the missing object was taken by someone with a dangerous secret and an unknown agenda. When her client is kidnapped, Alice must find her and the object of power before a vengeful killer destroys the city and slaughters thousands—starting with Alice.


I grabbed this for 99p a little while ago after having it on my wish list for months.

It starts with Alice in a bar being picked up by a half demon who it turns out has been abducting young girls and Alice has been tasked with taking him down. She's a blood mage on the run from her grandfather and is trying to stay out of everyone's way while taking on jobs to earn a living. When she's asked to investigate some missing objects she finds herself drawn into a mystery that almost costs her her life.

I'm not sure with this one. 

I was reading it because I wanted to know what this case involving these missing objects was going to be about but then we had the romance with Sean and that bit got my attention more than the case did. And then it all got turned on its head with a little help from the local vampires and I wasn't sure what to make of things anymore.

The case did take me a little by surprise when Alice couldn't find the mystery person who had access to her clients library and then we found out who it was and what they intended to do... This person was not messing around.

The vampire aspect also has me intrigued now. If what Alice believes is true then the vampire is a very sneaky guy and I would love to see her take him down. I also hope she can keep under her grandfathers radar and that she has a happy relationship with Sean. So yeah, I may have to continue the series.

Thursday, 18 November 2021

The Cottage on Sunshine Beach - Holly Martin

                                             56843766. sy475
Book: The Cottage on Sunshine Beach
Author: Holly Martin
Series: Sandcastle Bay, #2
Genres: Chick Lit, Romance
Format: Paperback
Publication Date: 22nd June 2018

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒœ
Date Finished: 18th November 2021


Melody Rosewood loves her new home in idyllic Sandcastle Bay. The beautiful little cottage on the edge of Sunshine Beach, with its bright yellow door and view of the sea has captured her heart. And she loves being close by to her family and best friend Tori Graham.

Life by the sea is pretty much perfect, there’s just one thing missing…

Gorgeous Jamie Jackson, with his cheeky grin and adorable puppy, works as a sculptor opposite Melody’s jewellery shop. From the moment he and Melody meet sparks fly. But despite their instant attraction, a past heartache is holding Jamie back.

As Melody starts to make a life for herself in the close-knit, quirky seaside community, she realises Jamie could be the one for her. But as the two of them take a chance on romance, it’s one dating disaster after another. Are they destined to always be just good friends?

Or will Melody finally find her happily-ever-after in Sandcastle Bay?


I read book 3 of this series a little while back, so I'm doing it out of order but here goes.

This starts with Melody walking along the beach with her puppy hoping to bump into her crush, Jamie. They walk to work together every morning and Melody has plucked up the courage to finally ask Jamie out on a date but things don't entirely go to plan. As the two try and navigate a romance they have to deal with the rest of the village and their prying eyes.

I did struggle a little to get into this one. I think it's because these books are just so bright and cheerful. I do enjoy a bit of angst in my romances and this lacked that. 

Melody is a bit accident prone but Jamie likes that she's not perfect and though he's a little wary of love after his previous disasters they do make a really cute couple.

Sandcastle Bay sounds like a lovely little seaside village that I'd love to visit but unfortunately I don't think I'll be reading more of this authors work because they're not really working for me.

Tuesday, 16 November 2021

Dear Ava - Ilsa Madden-Mills

                                               50900667. sy475
Book: Dear Ava
Author: Ilsa Madden-Mills
Genres: New Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Dark
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: 1st February 2020

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ–
Date Finished: 15th November 2021


The rich and popular Sharks rule at prestigious, ivy-covered Camden Prep. Once upon a time, I wanted to be part of their world--until they destroyed me.

The last thing I expected was an anonymous love letter from one of them.

Please. I hate every one of those rich jerks for what they did to me. The question is, which Shark is my secret admirer?

Knox, the scarred quarterback.
Dane, his twin brother.
Or Chance, the ex who dumped me. . .

Dear Ava,
Your eyes are the color of the Caribbean Sea.
Wait. That's stupid.
What I really mean is, you look at me and I feel something REAL.

It's been ten months since you were here, but I can't forget you.
I've missed seeing you walk down the hall.
I've missed you cheering at my football games.
I've missed the smell of your hair.

And then everything fell apart the night of the kegger.

Don't hate me because I'm a Shark.
I just want to make you mine.


I picked this up as a freebie at the start of this year after reading several of this authors books and realising how much I like them.

This starts rather dark with Ava waking up after a party, laying in the grass, and realising that she's been sexually assaulted. She's found by someone who takes her to her friends house where she finally passes out. Fast forward ten months and she's heading back to the prestigious school once more, knowing that one of the Sharks - the guys who pretty much rule the school - assaulted her and is determined to just finish school on her scholarship so she can go on to university. But then she finds a letter in her locker - a love letter - from a Shark nonetheless.

I wasn't sure how this was going to go after that first chapter. It was pretty brutal seeing Ava discover herself like that. I felt tears prick my eyes. But then Ava 2.0, as she called herself in that second chapter, was a lot more confident, at least outwardly, as she confronted some of the people who had made her life hell when she'd been there before.

So I also wasn't sure who the letter had come from and that intrigued me. Most likely one of the three men mentioned above but which one? The more I read, the more I came to understand those guys and that it could be any of them really but it quickly became obvious that one guy was the focus of the book but was he the one who wrote the letter?

I did end up figuring out who had assaulted Ava from about half way through, that person was just acting like a d*ck for all of the book. As for some of the other things going on, Dane was struggling, Chance was hurt but Knox seemed like a rock (at times). I actually grew to like all of them in their own way.

The book did tear me apart a little towards the end. I was having happy thoughts for Ava ending up with her guy but it's never straight forward in these kinda books. I think it was that bit that has made me mark this down a little because the next chapter picked up 20 months later. 

The epilogues were pretty fun and I enjoyed seeing Ava and her guy several years into their relationship and the happiness that they had finally found.

I will definitely be reading more of this authors work in the future.

Saturday, 13 November 2021

Lethal - Sandra Brown

                                               11143388. sy475
Book: Lethal
Author Sandra Brown
Genres: Romantic Suspense, Intrigue
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: 20th September 2011

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•
Date Finished: 13th November 2021


When her four year old daughter informs her a sick man is in their yard, Honor Gillette rushes out to help him. But that "sick" man turns out to be Lee Coburn, the man accused of murdering seven people the night before. Dangerous, desperate, and armed, he promises Honor that she and her daughter won't be hurt as long as she does everything he asks. She has no choice but to accept him at his word.

But Honor soon discovers that even those close to her can't be trusted. Coburn claims that her beloved late husband possessed something extremely valuable that places Honor and her daughter in grave danger. Coburn is there to retrieve it -- at any cost. From FBI offices in Washington, D.C., to a rundown shrimp boat in coastal Louisiana, Coburn and Honor run for their lives from the very people sworn to protect them, and unravel a web of corruption and depravity that threatens not only them, but the fabric of our society.


I've had this on my Kindle for five years - and it's my longest sitting e-book that I haven't read yet - so here goes.

This starts with Honor baking some things for her father in laws birthday when her daughter tells her there's a sick man in their garden. Honor is wary but runs out to try and help only for the man to pull a gun on her. That's when Hope recognises him from the news as the man accused of multiple murders last night. Scared, she does as he asks and it's only the following day that he begins to reveal things about himself and why he's there.

I was hooked from pretty early on. I think that for a while I forgot that this was a romantic suspense because I honestly thought that something bad was going to happen to Honor in that first chapter. I had to go back and read the description again when I got to the end of it because I just wasn't sure where it was heading. And then I was intrigued...

It's written in such as way as to leave you guessing for a long time on who the good guys are and who are the bad ones. The continuous swapping between the seven or so characters POV's just as something big is about to happen had me screeching at times. It was making me wait another 20 or so pages to find out the fate of someone! Argh!

I swear this book has had the most status updates out of me on Goodreads than any other lately. I was always showing my annoyance at the swap between POV's and the constant change of allegiance. I truly had no idea who was bad and it drove me crazy. The bad guy did take me a little by surprise and I felt bad when some people got killed but I have enjoyed this.

I will definitely be keeping my eyes open for more books by this author.

Wednesday, 10 November 2021

The Dead Don't Drink at Lafitte's - Seana Kelly

                                               56175969. sy475
Book: The Dead Don't Drink at Lafitte's
Author: Seana Kelly
Series: Sam Quinn, #2
Genres: Urban Fantasy, Shapeshifters, Vampires, Romance
Format: e-Book
Publication Date: 13th April 2021

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•
Date Finished: 10th November 2021


I’m Sam Quinn, the werewolf book nerd owner of the Slaughtered Lamb Bookstore and Bar. Things have been busy lately. While the near-constant attempts on my life have ceased, I now have a vampire gentleman caller. I’ve been living with Clive and the rest of his vampires for a few weeks while the Slaughtered Lamb is being rebuilt. It’s going about as well as you’d expect.

My mother was a wicche and long dormant abilities are starting to make themselves known. If I’d had a choice, necromancy wouldn’t have been my top pick, but it’s starting to come in handy. A ghost warns me someone is coming to kill Clive. When I rush back to the nocturne, I find vamps from New Orleans readying an attack. One of the benefits of vampires looking down on werewolves is no one expects much of me. They don’t expect it right up until I take their heads.

Now, Clive and I are setting out for New Orleans to take the fight back to the source. Vampires are masters of the long game. Revenge plots are often decades, if not centuries, in the making. We came expecting one enemy, but quickly learn we have darker forces scheming against us. Good thing I’m the secret weapon they never see coming


I bought this from Google Play a little after finishing the first book, since I enjoyed it so much.

This starts with Sam seeing a ghost outside her bar who warns her that someone is in immediate danger and she runs home thinking it's her lover Clive who's in harms way. Turns out vampires from New Orleans have been sent by their master to take Clive out in an effort to take his territory. Of course Clive doesn't take the slight well and flies across the country with his closest vampires and Sam and they set out on a course to show the vampires there that he is not weak.

I do like these characters and this series. I wasn't as pulled into this as the first one but I do like the continuation and development of the relationship between Sam and Clive. They are really great together and I love how Clive is starting to see that Sam is very good at looking out for herself and doesn't always need his help. I also grew to really like Russell and Godfrey, especially when Sam used her gift to see inside their heads.

I enjoyed the trip through New Orleans - it's a city I've never been to but would like to - but I did miss being inside Sam's bar and bookstore. I know it's having a rebuild after the events of the first but I grew to really like the place with it's amazing location and the graphic descriptions of it. 

I will definitely be reading more of this series in the future because Sam's also been growing as a character and finding all these new skills ans abilities she didn't know she had and it is very intriguing where it's going to go next.

Sunday, 7 November 2021

Demons Do It Better - Louisa Masters

                                               54245921. sy475
Book: Demons Do It Better
Author: Louisa Masters
Series: Hidden Species, #1
Genres: MM Romance, Paranormal
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: 6th August 2020

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•
Date Finished: 7th November 2021


I work for Lucifer. Only, it’s not as cool and satanic as it sounds.

The truth is, I’m an admin assistant who applied for a job that sounded kind of interesting and ended up working for the Community of Species Government. I’m the only human in the office, and basically I ride herd on a team of rambunctious shifters and demons.

I also spend a lot of time avoiding Gideon Bailey, the demon I had a one-night stand with right before I took this job. He hates me, and I really want to avoid being murdered. But I’ve been offered a promotion that will mean working with him, so we’re both going to have to get over it.

Plus, people are going missing. Pregnant people. And the word is that someone is dabbling in genetic experimentation. Putting a stop to that is more important than the sexual tension Gideon and I have been ignoring… isn’t it?


I bought this for 99p about a year ago now because I don't think I'd ever read a paranormal series based around gay romance before...?

Anyway this starts with Sam going for an interview that advertised itself as being "full of action" and is disappointed to find out he'll pretty much be doing what he does currently but with a few extra jobs thrown in. Only to be told that he'll be working for a company that deals with others species living amongst humans. Sam heads to a local bar in shock and meets Gideon who he instantly finds attractive and they spend the night together. It's only after Sam finally takes the job that he see's Gideon works at the same place and is a demon.

Hmm... On one hand, I liked this. I'm glad that the romance wasn't the main feature of the book and we had a decent plot involving crazy groups wanting to rid the world of humans/making the other species supreme.

On the other, not much happened at all in the romance aspect of it. It was one night in the first 7% or so and then nothing until about 60% apart from Sam ogling Gideon every so often. In fact every time Sam so much as hinted at something happening between them Gideon pretty much ran off until it came out about Sam's past and suddenly Gideon was all for being with Sam! It's that bit that's niggling at me. He wasn't interested really until that secret came out.

I don't think I'll be continuing the series.

Thursday, 4 November 2021

Enemies with Benefits - Roxie Noir

                                            45838076. sy475
Book: Enemies with Benefits
Author: Roxie Noir
Series: Loveless Brothers, #1
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Erotica
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication date: 14th May 2019

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•
Date Finished: 4th November 2021


I don’t love him. I don’t even like him.
I just want him.

Eli Loveless was my nemesis from the first day of kindergarten until we graduated high school. Everything I did, he had to do better - and vice versa. The day he left town was the best day of my life.

Ten years later, the day he came back was the worst.

Now he’s my co-worker.

Grown-up Eli Loveless is sexy as sin. He’s hotter than asphalt in the summer. The irritating kid I once knew is gone, and he’s been replaced by a man with green eyes, perfect abs, and a cocky smile.

It’s bad that I want him.

It’s worse that he wants me back.

There are looks. There are smirks. There are smiles that make my panties burst into flame.

And then there’s a shared kiss that leads to the hottest night of my life.

This is no office romance. This is a five-alarm fire.

What’s a girl to do when the man I can’t stand is the one I can’t stop lusting after?

Enter into a friends-with-benefits agreement, of course.

No dates. No relationship. Just blisteringly hot sex, because if there’s one person I could never fall for, it’s Eli.



I picked this up as a freebie a few months ago because I do love me a bit of enemies to lovers.

This starts with  on a date at a restaurant where her date is rude to the staff and expects her to fall into bed with. Putting him straight she deals with the consequences, managing to bump into her high school nemesis, Eli. Days later she bumps into Eli at work and it turns out he's the new chef at the grand estate where she works as a wedding coordinator. Those old memories of losing out to him and trying to do better than him quickly come back to the surface and they quickly fall back into the routine...only now they see how attractive the other has become and their shenanigans begin to lead to a sexual tension that they have no idea how to handle.

So I'll be honest. This started good and then took a bit of a nosedive when apart from one kiss, nothing happened for the first 45% or so. I was really on the verge of giving up by then. Considering the book is 400+ pages and by 160 odd we'd only had a kiss... Yeah. Slow start.

It did eventually pick up but I did feel the author went into a lot of detail about some things that could have just not made it into the book. As I've mentioned a lot, I'm not a big fan of long books unless their's something happening all the time to keep me entertained...and this didn't do that for me.

I did like Eli's brothers' ribbing of him and his relationship with Violet. It was fun and Eli's almost teenager like responses to their teasing did make me smile. I actually just really liked Eli. Violet I wasn't so sure of. 

As much as I did enjoy the dynamic between the brothers, I'm not sure I'll be continuing the series.

Monday, 1 November 2021

Into the Fire - Jeaniene Frost

                                             29158448. sy475
Book: Into the Fire
Author: Jeaniene Frost
Series: Dark Prince, #4
Genres: Urban Fantasy, Romance, Vampires
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: 28th February 2017

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•
Date Finished: 31st October 2021

In the explosive finale of Jeaniene Frost’s Night Prince series, Vlad is in danger of losing his bride to an enemy whose powers might prove greater than the Prince of Vampires... In the wrong hands,  love can be a deadly weapon.
For nearly six hundred years, Vlad Tepesh cared for nothing, so he had nothing to lose. His brutal reputation ensured that all but the most foolhardy stayed away. Now, falling in love with Leila has put him at the mercy of his passions. And one adversary has found a devastating way to use Vlad’s new bride against him.
A powerful spell links Leila to the necromancer Mircea. If he suffers or dies, so does she. Magic is forbidden to vampires, so Vlad and Leila enlist an unlikely guide as they search for a way to break the spell. But an ancient enemy lies in wait, capable of turning Vlad and Leila’s closest friends against them... and finally tearing the lovers apart forever.

It's the last book! 

To try and break the spell binding Leila and Mircea, they link up with Ian of Mencheres line as they try to find a magic user who may be strong enough to break the spell. Only before they do, they find out that Mircea has been taken hostage by someone and are carving messages into his flesh - and through the link, Leila's too - to contact Vlad. Vlad is furious and vows to find whoever is behind the messages as well as breaking the bond between his wife and his old acquaintance.

Ian - the same Ian I grew to like while reading the handful of books I've finished in the Night Huntress series - is still the same crazy, sex mad vampire that I remember. As much as it was nice to see him, the change in direction with this last book did put me off a little. That's not to say I didn't enjoy this, just not as much as the previous books.

I was sad about one thing that happened at the end, which I won't spoil but I do believe this was a fitting ending to the series and I look forward to read more of Ian's story soon - I actually didn't remember reading the first book but I have done, and I also have the second! A reread is definitely in order, I think.

I'm not going into any more detail than that but if you love alpha males, vampires, romance and action then you should give this series a try!

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