Ep 159; Books to Escape The Bad Stuff & Funny Books…

This episode Simon and Thomas talk about the books that we can read to escape all the crazy things going on in the world as well as funny books, just how funny are they really?

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logo3_728-x-90111 Books to Escape the Bad Stuff () Thomas and Simon discuss what the books are that we can read when we want to escape all the mad stuff that is going on the world. They also discuss if we should be escaping the events that are unfolding or reading more about them?  image3

Funny Books () Can books ever really be funny? If so which ones are funny? What makes a funny book and why? Is one readers funny the polar opposite for another reader? Simon and Thomas discuss this in the second part of the show.

Books Mentioned On The Readers () Agatha Raisin by M.C Beaton, Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle, Station Eleven by Emily St John Mandel, Mapp and Lucia by E.F. Benson, The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena, The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon, John Wyndham novels, At Hawthorne Time by Melissa Harrison, The Hopkins Manuscript by R.C Sheriff, The Age of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker, The Essex Serpent by Sarah Perry, Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith, Harry Potter novels, The Three Musketeers & the Count of Monte Christo by Alexander Dumas, Anthony Trollope’s novels, Girl at War by Sara Novic, The Tsar of Love and Techno by Anthony Marra, Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Rain by Melissa Harrison, Love in a Cold Climate by Nancy Mitford, David Lodge’s novels, Dan Rhodes novels, Girl Walks into a Bar by Rachel Dratch, Chelsea Handler’s books, Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson, Lucky Jim by Kingsley Amis, P.G Wodehouse’s books, Tom Sharpe’s books, Bill Bryson’s books, Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole, Vile Bodies by Evelyn Waugh, Our Man in Havana by Graham Greene, Then We Came to the End by Joshua Ferris, I Partridge by Steve Coogan, Fear and Loathing in Los Vegas by Hunter S. Thompson, Money by Martin Amis, Trainspotting by Irvine Welsh, Catch 22 by Joseph Heller, David Sedaris’ books, Where’d You Go Bernadette by Maria Semple, The Family Law by Benjamin Law, The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde, Running With Scissors & Sellevision by Augusten Burroughs, Love Nina by Nina Stibbe, Alan Bennett, Candide by Voltaire, Yes Please by Amy Poehler, The Glorious Heresies by Lisa McInerney, Life after Life by Kate Atkinson, Look Who’s Back by Timur Vermes, The Finkler Question by Harold Jacobson, The Improbability of Love by Hannah Rothschild, Sue Townsend’s books.

Next time on the Readers () The Readers will be back in two weeks when they will be back with more book based banter. If you missed the latest episode of You Wrote The Book do go and listen, Simon’s is joined by Kit de Waal to discuss her incredible debut novel My Name is Leon.

Ep 158; Prizes (Do They Matter) & Summer Reading Horizons 

This episode Simon and Thomas talk about book prizes and if they matter as well as talking about what they have been reading over the summer so far and what they have planned to read on their holidays.

Don’t forget you can find us on TwitterGood Reads and Facebook now as well as subscribing to us on iTunes here. logo3_728-x-90111

Prizes () Thomas and Simon have a chat about book prizes and the effect that they have on us as Readers as the Man Booker longlist has not been mentioned. Simon wondered Thomas’ thoughts as Simon himself is a co-founder of The Green Carnation Prize for Fiction and was wondering if it all really matters. They discuss it before thinking about what the criteria would be if they both started their own prizes…

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Summer Reading Horizons () Simon and Thomas talk about some of the books that they have read recently over the summer and what summer reads are lying in wait…

Thomas mentions…

All Involved by Ryan Gattis, The Expatriates by Janie Y.K. Lee, The Sympathiser by Viet Thanh Nguyen, A House Unlocked by Penelope Lively, Brat Farrar by Josephine Tey, The Association of Small Bombs by Karan Mahajan, Rancid Pansies by James Hamilton Patterson.

Simon mentions…

The Tsar of Love and Techno by Anthony Marra, Stan and Nan by Sarah Lippett, The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena, Foxlowe by Eleanor Wasserberg, Dinosaurs on Other Planets by Danielle Maclaughlin, Arcadia by Iain Pears, A Brief History of Seven Killings by Marlon James, Cuckoo Calling by Robert Galbraith, The Man Who Loved Children by Christina Stead

Other Books Mentioned On The Readers () The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce, The House at the Edge of the World by Sophie Rochester, Grace Notes by Bernard MacLaverty, A Constellation of Vital Phenomenon by Anthony Marra, The Girls by Emma Cline, A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara, Of Human Bondage by W. Somerset Maugham.

Next time on the Readers () The Readers will be back in two weeks when they will be back with more book based banter. If you missed the latest episode of You Wrote The Book do go and listen, Simon’s is joined by Kit de Waal to discuss her incredible debut novel My Name is Leon.

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You can subscribe to our weekly podcast on iTunes here.

Ep 157; Books To Get Excited About In The Next 6 Months

This episode Simon is joined by the lovely Gavin for their biannual foray into the books that they are looking forward to over the next six months. Exciting.

Don’t forget you can find us on TwitterGood Reads and Facebook now as well as subscribing to us on iTunes here. 

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Catching Up () Simon and Gavin have a chat about all sorts of bother

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Top Picks for the Rest of 2016 () In their now biannual book fest Simon and Gavin talk about the books that they are most excited about in the next six months – well the ones they managed to find the details of, there may be many many more. Here they are…

Simon’s Choices Were

  • Augustown – Kei Miller
  • Hide – Matthew Griffin
  • The Summer That Melted Everything – Tiffany McDaniel
  • The Borrowed – Chan Ho-Kei
  • By Gaslight – Steven Price
  • Angel Catbird – Margaret Atwood
  • The One Hundred Nights of Hero – Isabel Greenberg
  • The Fat Artist and Other Stories – Benjamin Hale
  • Thin Air – Michelle Paver
  • The Last Days of Leda Grey – Essie Fox
  • The Power – Naomi Alderman
  • London Lies Beneath – Stella Duffy
  • A Day in the Death of America – Gary Younge

Gav’s Choices Were

  • The Allegations by Mark Lawson
  • A Climate of Fear by Fred Vargas
  • Undying: A Love Story by Michel Faber
  • Taduno’s Song Odafe Atogun
  • Poison City by Paul Crilley
  • The Secret Diary of Hendrik Groen, 83 ¼ Years Old
  • The Borrowed Chan Ho Kei
  • Chasing Embers by James Bennet
  • Who Killed Piet Barol by Richard mason
  • The Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz
  • The Invention of Angela Carter Edmund Gordon
  • The Word Detective: A Life in Words: From Shenanigan to Selfie by John Simpson

Next time on the Readers () The Readers will be back in two weeks when they will be back with more book based banter. If you missed the latest episode of You Wrote The Book do go and listen, Simon’s is joined by Kit de Waal to discuss her incredible debut novel My Name is Leon.

Get the RSS link for the podcast by clicking here.
You can subscribe to our weekly podcast on iTunes here.

Ep 156; Time To Read & Classics vs. Contemporary Books

This episode Simon and Thomas answer some more listeners questions about time to read and reading contemporary novels vs. the classics.

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Don’t forget you can find us on TwitterGood Reads and Facebook now as well as subscribing to us on iTunes here.

Catching Up () Thomas and Simon have a catch up as if he is in hospital, he isn’t they just thought he would be when this episode airs. He will be going in at some point this summer though.

Time To Read () One of our lovely listeners Richard wants to know how Simon and Thomas find so much time to read, so they tell him and all of you. They also book in some therapy and the like as they assess their own reading challenges.

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Classics vs Contemporary Books () Melissa wants to know if Simon and Thomas try and make themselves read the same amount of classic novels as they do contemporary ones. They have a chat about this and ponder if you should try and match it, or simply throw reading responsibly out of the window and read what the heck you like.

Next time on the Readers () The Readers will be back in two weeks when they will be back with more book based banter. If you missed the latest episode of You Wrote The Book do go and listen, Simon’s is joined by Kit de Waal to discuss her incredible debut novel My Name is Leon.

Get the RSS link for the podcast by clicking here.
You can subscribe to our weekly podcast on iTunes here.

Ep 155; A Summer Spectacular

This episode Simon and Thomas talk all things summer. There is a summer read-a-long, discussion of summer plans and Simon and Thomas give you five books each they think would be perfect for your summers… Beware though they start with a summer storm.

Don’t forget you can find us on TwitterGood Reads and Facebook now as well as subscribing to us on iTunes here

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Summer Storms Catch Up () In the first part of the show before all the lovely summer sun, Thomas and Simon talk about some of the story weather kind of things that have been going on in their worlds. First up the awful news from Orlando and then the whole Brexit issue…

The Readers Summer Read () Simon and Thomas would like to thank you so much for all of the votes that you cast for what we should all read together this month. Simon and Thomas whittle the list of (over forty) books down to five books each and then do battle. Only one book will become the victor, but which one? Spoiler it is pictured below.

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Summer Reading Plans () Simon and Thomas talk about their reading plans over the summer. One of them has somehow made lots of plans, can you guess which host that is? What summer reading plans do you have?

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The Readers Recommended Summer Reads () In the final part of this summer spectacular Thomas and Simon recommend five books they each think that you should be reading this summer wherever you are spending it.

Thomas recommends…

I Am Charlotte Simmons – Tom Wolfe
Mapp & Lucia – E.F Benson
The Ripening Seed – Colette
The Inn at Lake Devine – Elinor Lipman
Main Street – Sinclair Lewis

Simon recommends…

The Year of the Runaways – Sunjeev Sahota
Up at the Villa – W. Somerset Maugham
All Involved – Ryan Gattis
Boy Erased – Garrard Conley
The Trouble with Goats and Sheep – Joanna Cannon

Books Mentioned in the Show () Cold Earth by Sarah Moss, The Turner House by Angela Floury, Euphoria by Lily King, Kitchens of the Great Midwest by J. Ryan Strabel, Butcher’s Crossing by John Williams, All The Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders, The Mad Woman Upstairs by Catherine Lowell, You Don’t Have To Live Like This by Benjamin Markovitz, The Sympathiser by Viet Thanh Nguyen, The Illuminations by Andrew O’Hagan, The Association of Small Bombs by Karan Mahajan, Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel, Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy, The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas, The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton, Of Human Bondage by W. Somerset Maugham, Barchester Towers by Anthony Trollope, The Dinner by Herman Koch, Life Only Better by Anna Gavalda, The Girls by Emma Cline, In Cold Blood by Truman Capote and those in the final topic above.

Next time on the Readers () The Readers will be back in two weeks when they will be back with more book based banter. If you missed the latest episode of You Wrote The Book do go and listen, Simon’s was joined by Charlotte Wood to discuss her incredible new novel The Natural Way of Things which is INCREDIBLE, the book – though the interview is a hoot too. The last few episodes have been delayed due to Simon’s personal life being bonkers but it is back next week with Kit de Waal.

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You can subscribe to our weekly podcast on iTunes here.

Ep 154; Readalongs, Political Books & London Books

This episode Simon and Thomas answer three questions from lovely listener Pam all about readalongs, books with a political bent and books set in London.

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Readers Read-a-Long’s () The first question that Pam asks Simon and Thomas if they might ever bring back a readalong on the podcast like when they read The Night Guest, as well as when they have done readalongs with Ann and Michael or The Readers Book Club. So Thomas and Simon discuss the idea and have come up with a plan… They are going to start doing Summer and Winter ones and they would like your suggestions for the Summer one, get set, go!!!

Political Books () Pam’s second question is about books with a political twist as it is presidential season/madness in the US, and also EU political madness in the UK. Simon and Thomas have a chat about this and recommend some books that you might want to give a whirl. They would also like some recommendations especially ones that Simon will love as much as he does The Good Wife & House of Cards.
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London Books () Pam is off to London this month and she would like to know which books we would recommend with a London book setting. Thomas loves books set in London, Simon is not such a fan of them – which might be an understatement. They still talk about it though because that is how dedicated they are.

Books Mentioned in the Show () The Life of Elves by Muriel Barberry, The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan, Crooked Adam by D.E Stevenson, The Night Guest by Fiona MacFarlane, Pleasantville by Attica Locke, Echo House by Ward Just, Babbit by Sinclair Lewis, The Paliser Series by Anthony Trollope, Run by Ann Patchett, Dreams of My Father by Barack Obama, All The King’s Men by Robert Penn Warren, The Year of the Runaways by Sunjeev Sahota, most of Anita Brookner’s books, Under The Net By Iris Murdoch, Offshore and Human Voices by Penelope Fitzgerald, The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins, most of Sherlock Holmes, Brick Lane by Monica Ali, Capital by John Lancaster, Ben Aaronovich’s books, Howard’s End by E.M. Forster, Of Human Bondage by W. Somerset Maugham, Sharon Bolton and Jake Arnott’s books, A Man Lies Dreaming by Lavie Tidhar, 84 Charing Cross Road and The Duchess of Bloomsbury Street by Helene Hanff, All Passion Spent by Vita Sackville-West, The Day of the Triffids by John Wyndham, The Bricks That Built the Houses by Kate Tempest, NW by Zadie Smith, the Golden Notebook by Doris Lessing, While England Slept by David Levithan, Persephone novels, Bridget Jones Diary by Helen Fielding, Down and Out In Paris and London by George Orwell, Letters from London by Julian Barnes, The Night Watch and The Paying Guest by Sarah Waters, London by Peter Ackroyd, London Fields by Martin Amis, A Girl of Slender Means ­By Muriel Spark, Excellent Women by Barbara Pym, Mother London by Michael Moorcock, Not Working by Lisa Owens, Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson, The Gustav Sonata by Rose Tremain.

Next time on the Readers () The Readers will be back in two weeks when they will be back with more book based banter. If you missed the latest episode of You Wrote The Book do go and listen, Simon’s was joined by Charlotte Wood to discuss her incredible new novel The Natural Way of Things which is INCREDIBLE, the book – though the interview is a hoot too. Last week’s episode has been delayed but a special live show will be up next week with Maggie O’Farrell.

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You can subscribe to our weekly podcast on iTunes here.

Ep 153; Endings (and a Bit of Bingo!)

This episode Simon and Thomas talk about endings… And the possibility of playing bingo over this summer.

Don’t forget you can find us on TwitterGood Reads and Facebook now as well as subscribing to us on iTunes here.

logo3_728-x-90111Catching Up () Thomas and Simon start the show with a catch up and see who can one up the other for who has been the most sick.

Bye Bye Books on the Nightstand () We couldn’t let this episode of The Readers go by without talking about the sad news that Ann Kingman and Michael Kindness have finished Books on the Nightstand. Simon talks about how BOTNS have been a brilliant both for listening to, inspiring the birth of The Readers and then went onto Booktopia and has lead to some wonderful listeners and some wonderful friends.

BOTNS Bingo () In honour of Ann and Michael and Books on the Nightstand, Thomas and Simon have decided that they will take part in Books on the Nightstand Bingo, now if you haven’t played before you can go to the emotional episode of BOTNS where they explain it. Briefly though you use a bingo card to help you choose what you are reading for the year ahead. Simon is sure that Thomas has cheated with his…

tumblr_static_literature-books-584Books Mentioned in the Show () It Can’t Happen Here by Sinclair Lewis, The Plot Against America by Philip Roth, The Portable Veblen by Elizabeth McKenzie, The Dinner by Herman Koch, War of the Worlds by H.G Wells, The Time Machine by H.G Wells, Vinegar Girl by Anne Tyler, A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara, The Magician’s Assistant by Ann Patchett, Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte, Beside The Sea by Veronique Olmi, Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn, The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce, The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy by Rachel Joyce, Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L James, Go Set A Watchman by Harper Lee, Black Water by Louise Doughty, Apple Tree Yard by Louise Doughty.

Next time on the Readers () The Readers will be back in two weeks when they will be back with more book based banter. If you missed the latest episode of You Wrote The Book do go and listen, Simon’s is joined by Charlotte Wood to discuss her incredible new novel The Natural Way of Things which is INCREDIBLE, the book – though the interview is a hoot too.

Get the RSS link for the podcast by clicking here.
You can subscribe to our weekly podcast on iTunes here.

Ep 152 (Again); Favourite Authors We Have Never Actually Read & Books That Teach Us Something

Let’s try this week’s episode again. 

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Books That Teach Us Something () One of our diehard listeners Sarah had the following question for Simon and Thomas “are the books we love the most the ones that teach us something? By this, I mean teaching in many forms – it could be that we find a wonderful character that helps us to grow as a person, or it could be that we develop a fascination with a new place or landscape, or feel that we have evolved in some way after reading something meaningful.” Simon and Thomas try and answer this…

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Favourite Author’s You Haven’t Read Yet () In the second section of the show Simon and Thomas talk about authors that they have never read and are sure they will be favourites, as requested by Ruthiella after a post she saw on Simon’s blog. They have a chat about those authors and why  they feel sure that they will love them.

Other Books Mentioned in the Show () Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert, Touching The Wild by Joe Hutto, The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton, Wild by Cheryl Strayed, Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier, The Last Act of Love by Cathy Rentzenbrink, The Blue Flower by Penelope Fitzgerald, Moon Tiger by Penelope Lively, The Inevitable Gift Shop by Will Eaves, The Absent Therapist by Will Eaves, Return of the Soldier by Rebecca West, Angel by Elizabeth Taylor, Ten Days by Gillian Slovo, Cleopatras Sister by Penelope Lively.

Next time on the Readers () The Readers will be back in two weeks when they will be back with more book based banter. If you missed the latest episode of You Wrote The Book do go and listen, Simon’s guest is Dr Suzanne O’Sullivan and they discuss her Wellcome Prize winning It’s All In Your Head. He will be joined next week by Charlotte Wood to discuss her incredible new novel The Natural Way of Things.

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Ep 151; A Really Random Unplanned and Pretty Much Unedited Episode

Welcome to the latest episode of The Readers, which starts off meaning to be one episode and then ends up being another episode completely…

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Random Tangents and Catch Ups () Initially this week was meant to be an episode answering two of our lovely listeners problems. However as Simon and Thomas actually hadn’t recorded in ages they just ended up having a really big tangential catch up which covers;  readathons, London, book prize parties, Simon’s book shopping spree with Gavin, rainy day reading, Thomas joining a library, whether you should be shaming your TBR, the timings of book buying, bookshops, republished books, shipped over books from overseas, the Baileys shortlist and longlist, scheduled reading, what they are reading and much, much more.

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Next time on the Readers () Thomas and Simon will be back in two weeks when they will be back with more structured book based banter. Simon was also back with of You Wrote The Book last week when he was joined by the wonderful  Garth Greenwell to talk about his quite incredible debut novel What Belongs To You, do go and have a listen.

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Ep 150; Bookshelf Bingo

Welcome to the latest episode of The Readers, where Simon and Thomas celebrate their official 150th episode with a game of bookshelf bingo!

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Bookshelf Bingo () Thomas and Simon were pondering the right way to celebrate 150 official, though there have been a few extra, episodes of The Readers and Simon came up with the idea of Bookshelf Bingo. Listeners simply pick two numbers at random and Simon and Thomas find the books that correspond with those shelf and book numbers and talk about the books. Get ready for a lot of book chatter and whole host of book recommendations…
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Here are all the books mentioned in the show…

The Edwardians – Vita Sackville West
The Vegetarian – Han Kang
Marry Me – Dan Rhodes
Gold – Dan Rhodes
Mrs Gaskell – Arthur Pollard
The Weed That Strings The Hangmans Bag – Alan Bradley
Surprising Myself – Christopher Bram
My Policeman – Bethan Roberts
The Finishing School – Muriel Spark
The Fox and the Star – Coralie Bickford Smith
Sunset Park – Paul Auster
Watson’s Apology – Beryl Bainbridge

Arthur & George – Julian Barnes
The Girl with Glass Feet – Ali Shaw
Minotaur – Benjamin Tammuz
The World of Upstairs Downstairs – Molly Hardwick
The Natural Way of Things – Charlotte Wood
Family Values – Wendy Cope
The Ripening Seed – Colette
Hotel du Lac – Anita Brookner
A Start in Life – Anita Brookner
Some Tame Gazelle – Barbara Pym
The Cement Garden – Ian McEwan
Flesh & Blood – Michael Cunningham
Wait For Me – Deborah Devonshire
1984 – George Orwell
Ordeal – Nevil Shute
Kafka on the Shore – Haruki Murakami
A Shower of Summer Days – May Sarton
Falling Angels – Tracy Chevalier
Andorra – Peter Cameron
Some Kind of Fairytale – Graham Joyce
The Loved One – Evelyn Waugh
The Making of the English Landscape – W G Hoskings
Mystery in White – J Jefferson Farjeon
Human Voices – Penelope Fitzgerald
Offshore – Penelope Fitzgerald
Scottsboro – Ellen Feldman
Leaves of Grass – Walt Whitman
Mariana – Monica Dickens
The Happy Prisoner – Monica Dickens
The Tigers Wife – Tea Obrecht
In The Wet – Nevil Shute
The Queen & I – Sue Townsend
The Age of Miracles – Karen Thompson Walker
Under The Tuscan Sun – Frances Mayes
The Birds and Other Stories – Daphne Du Maurier
Run – Ann Patchett
The Pure Gold Baby – Margaret Drabble
The Room of Lost Things – Stella Duffy
Delta of Venus – Anais Nin
A God in Every Stone – Kamila Shamsie

Next time on the Readers () Thomas and Simon will be back in two weeks when they will be back with more book based banter. Next week Simon will return with a new series of You Wrote The Book with Garth Greenwell – if you have missed the last ones do go and listen, his last guest was Joanna Cannon and they discussed her wonderful debut novel The Trouble With Goats and Sheep.

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