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The Other Side of Lost

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Girl Online meets Wild in this emotionally charged story of girl who takes to the wilderness to rediscover herself and escape the superficial persona she created on social media.

Mari Turner’s life is perfect. That is, at least to her thousands of followers who have helped her become an internet starlet. But when she breaks down and posts a video confessing she’s been living a lie—that she isn’t the happy, in-love, inspirational online personality she’s been trying so hard to portray—it goes viral and she receives major backlash. To get away from it all, she makes an impulsive decision: to hike the entire John Muir trail. Mari and her late cousin, Bri, were supposed to do it together, to celebrate their shared eighteenth birthday. But that was before Mari got so wrapped up in her online world that she shut anyone out who questioned its worth—like Bri.

With Bri’s boots and trail diary, a heart full of regret, and a group of strangers that she meets along the way, Mari tries to navigate the difficult terrain of the hike. But the true challenge lies within, as she searches for the way back to the girl she fears may be too lost to find: herself.

320 pages, ebook

First published August 7, 2018

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About the author

Jessi Kirby

11 books1,346 followers

Jessi Kirby is a former English teacher and librarian. She lives in Orange County, CA with her husband and two kids, where she writes stories and runs the beach every day. Well, almost every day.

You can contact Jessi at jessi@jessikirby.com

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5 stars
1,049 (37%)
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 524 reviews
Profile Image for Ariel.
301 reviews64.2k followers
January 25, 2018
The first half of this book was phenomenal. I was ready to add it to my favourites shelf and preach about it forevermore. I really enjoyed it and recommend it (especially for people who struggle with social media and/or like nature!) but it missed the mark slightly for me by introducing a romance that I didn't think was necessary and by dropping the social media aspect in the latter half of the book, which was what I'd been so enjoying in the first half.

So I still really enjoyed it, but the second half wavered a bit for me!
Profile Image for Korrina  (OwlCrate).
193 reviews4,558 followers
May 10, 2018
Great summer read! Quite thought provoking in multiple ways, especially if you’re dealing with grief. And a fantastic group of friends that I would love to meet in real life. :)
Profile Image for Ariana.
938 reviews1,302 followers
November 13, 2019

“The Other Side of Lost” is a beautiful and emotional story about finding yourself, about challenges, regrets and second chances, about friendship and nature and survival and a lot more. And yes, there is a bit of sweet love squeezed in there as well, to make your heart skip a beat.

I have no idea how to properly put into words all the things I loved about this story, but you should know this:

It’s delightful to be able to resonate with a story as I did, to have something in common with it – and what I think is that we all need to be accepted – as we are, and some people might need just as much acceptance online as in the real life and vice versa. I think that we need to constantly exceed our own limits; and that every once in a while it is healthy for the mind (and the body) to do something crazy (preferably not dangerous, nor this reckless), something out of character, something meaningful, something for ourselves only, something to be proud of.

It’s also fulfilling to understand the character arc, to see it evolve slowly from someone pretty much unlikable to someone deeply lovable. And this is what this story delivered to me. At the beginning I didn’t like the main character – Mari (judging by her name, I hoped to end up loving her) seemed too shallow, so selfish, and she was even naïve when she decided to hike the entire John Muir trail (because let’s be honest, she had no experience and had no idea what she was getting herself into) and even more so when she considered doing it all alone, even when she found people (great people!) to tag along with.

It’s true that I have a soft spot for Jessi‘s prose – all her stories are emotional carousels, very well written and with deep messages, and I usually enjoy them to pieces. But what makes this story special to me is the combination between:
a) the fact that it shows a different face of the life behind the social media frenzy;
b) it also follows a character trying to find her way back to the real world, having to give up all that she’s worked for in the virtual one – in order to find the happiness she couldn’t stand faking anymore;
c) it involves what seems like a stunning national park (from the pictures I’ve seen around it is absolutely breathtaking) and backpacking, hiking, wilderness, unexpected friendship and (yes) a bit of love;
d) like most of Jessi Kirby’s stories, it tackles grieve in the same intimate and heartbreaking way we are used to.

What more do you need? For me it was perfect!

The truth is that I still need to have it on my shelf in physical format (to re-read it and hug it every now and then), so August can’t come fast enough! Read the full review at: ReadingAfterMidnight.com


20 Jan 2018

Dear Jessi Kirby,

I hope that in my final copy I will find a Josh&Mari epilogue!
Otherwise know that you are a very mean cruel author :p

Though this book was pure perfection and I probably loved it the most - or so I feel at the time, even without a most needed one-more-chapter with them all.

Such a beautiful story!


PS: social media fakeness and everything that comes with it, heartbreaking drama, the beauty of nature and a great group of friends. Not to mention a cute romance and a character who goes through such a tremendous change throughout the story... love, love, loved it!

PPS: this time around I WILL find a way to get your autograph on my book. Even if I have to cross the ocean and the mountains to do so.
Profile Image for Aj the Ravenous Reader.
1,030 reviews1,044 followers
August 17, 2020
“And don’t forget, when things seem bad-and they will out there-every day is a chance to be better than you were the day before.”

The Other Side of Lost, hands down, is the best Jessi Kirby book I read to date. This was so unexpected, so profound and thought provoking, so original and touching. Here I am again assuming the book was a cutesy read because again of the cover, but I should have known better because I have already established and observed that Ms. Kirby’s books usually involve grief and loss but still, this book is incredibly deeper than I thought it would be, my heart is still aching (the good kind), still blowing my nose and wiping my eyes as I am writing this review.

The story doesn’t really start impressively. It simply tries to establish a truth about how social media controls so many lives, how so many young people today seek validation and self-worth from how many likes they earn. How they filter and edit everything about themselves just to appear so put together on photos while living a sorry, miserable life in reality.

I love how our main character, Mari, finally came to her senses and decided once and for all to get rid of all her social media accounts and really do something to change her life. The universe seems to agree with her because she somehow finds herself on a hike and not just a simple hike, that of John Muir Trail all the way to Mount Whitney which was supposed to be her cousin Bri’s hike, however the latter died just two months ago so Mari’s hike at first purposely seems to honor the death of her cousin but as it goes on, it’s starts to become her own to literally and figuratively discover who she is and what she’s capable of. It’s honestly so poetic and sincere, several times I had to wipe my eyes of tears I didn’t even want there. Ugh!

Reading the book already feels like taking the hike myself and I’m really thankful to the author for the vivid, concrete descriptions of the beautiful sceneries and places of the Sierras starting with Cloud Rest, The Thousand Island Lake, The Red’s Meadow Resort (the burgers and shakes sound like heaven!), the Purple Lake, Silver Pass Creek (Yikes!), Bear Ridge, Muir Trail Ranch (wow, hot springs!), Evolution Basin, Muir Pass, Muir Hut, Golden Staircase, Rae Lakes Basin, Guitar Lake (looks really cool!) and finally Mount Whitney. The book could already be an inspirational, helpful guide to hiking the JMT to Mount Whitney. I also couldn’t keep myself from Googling these places. I am that riveted.

So incredible how Mari started the hike so lost and alone, unsure of herself and of her future and ending it with several wonderful friends and a confident sense of identity while being at peace with the loss of her beloved cousin, realizing that she never really lost her and the she was with her every step of her hike. It’s a beautiful, touching, perfect ending to the story. I officially love you, Ms. Kirby. <3
Profile Image for Jen Ryland.
1,480 reviews900 followers
Shelved as 'setting-aside-for-now'
August 21, 2018
Stopped reading as I could see that this one was just not going to work for me. (Aside: I am a huge fan of the author, and will absolutely try her next book.)

The Other Side of Lost is about a teen Instagram star, who, after the sudden death of her cousin, decides to take her cousin's place on a marathon hike on the John Muir trail.

Okay, my first problem was that this is a LOT like Wild by Cheryl Strayed. Like much too similar. I was always comparing the two in my head and this was ending up as a more superficial and contrived version of the same story. (Yes, Wild was a memoir and this is fiction, which possibly contributed to my feelings. But I also feel that this book could have changed it up just a little and made the story about, I don't know, a white water rafting trip or something.)

I think The Other Side of Lost could be a great choice for tweens and very young teens who are a) social media obsessed and b) not ready to read Wild (which does raise some adult-level issues). But if you don't fall into either of these categories, definitely read Wild. Or see the movie.

I also had some huge believability issues in the part of The Other Side of Lost that I read. .

Read more of my reviews on JenRyland.com! Check out my Bookstagram! Or check out my Jen In Ten reviews on Youtube - get the lowdown on current books in 10-30 seconds!

Thanks to the publisher for providing an advance copy for review!
Profile Image for Fernwehwelten.
320 reviews205 followers
February 19, 2023
Das Buch hat mich glaube ich zur absolut richtigen Zeit erreicht. Oder vielleicht hatte ich eher Glück, dass ich es zur genau richtigen Zeit vom SuB befreit habe. Es geht um Trauer, um Verlust, um Neuanfänge und Selbstfindung. Um die Frage danach, was man selbst will und braucht. Um die Wichtigkeit von Freundschaften und den wachsenden Glauben an sich selbst. Ein tolles Jugendbuch, das mir einfach gut getan hat.
Profile Image for Meghan Hughes Ohrstrom.
109 reviews1,945 followers
November 14, 2018
I love my YA novels, but I had never read anything from Kirby till now. I absolutely adored this story, its characters, its utter relevance to our technology-addicted world, & our relationship to it... It was all just what I needed. In October, I took my first "social media break" which might sound silly, but is so needed these days. With the job I have online & my addiction to my phone I never like to admit I have.. I needed that! In this story, Mari needed that too. I found myself cringing at the start of this novel while it went into detail of her reasons for being online & what she dealt with secretly behind each post. I can honestly say I've never felt like what I share online is fake or coming a different person than I really am, but I can understand the experience that is & the effect it has on someone's psyche. The journey Mari went on in this book of self-discovery, testing her limits, living in the present, & healing her grief... It was really cathartic to read. Plus, the description of the trail she was on... Boy it made me wanna hike the JMT myself baby!!! 😂 I highly recommend this book to anyone who likes YA, romance, or self-help novels. I guarantee you'll find something to connect to in this read!
Profile Image for Stacee.
2,709 reviews703 followers
August 14, 2018
I’m definitely a fan of Jessi Kirby and her words, so I’m always in for a new book and I don’t care what it’s about.

I loved Mari so much. It was easy to relate to her obsession with social media and how she struggled with what she was showing. Her inner monologue is uncertain and insecure and felt so authentic. There are a few other characters here, but this is all about Mari.

Plot wise it was a little slow and maybe a small bit monotonous, but it completely worked. I loved the tiny surprises and successes and I was rooting for Mari from the start. I loved the camaraderie and the growth. My only complaint {if you could call it that} is that I wanted more at the end — even if it was about the journey and really fit for the story. I’m just greedy.

Overall, it was atmospheric and full of heart and an easy story to settle into with characters I really liked. I can’t wait to see what Jessi put outs next.

**Huge thanks to Harper Teen for providing the arc free of charge**
Profile Image for Marin.
224 reviews120 followers
November 30, 2018
If you have a love/hate relationship with social media, if you love hiking, being outside, stories about finding yourself, AND you want to ugly cry at 1am on a weeknight, this book is for you. What a surprise - I really enjoyed it and did not feel like YA at all. Maybe a bit in the fluffy, "you can do it!" bits but overall felt it was an intelligent and moving read on grief and loss.
Profile Image for Kiera.
319 reviews117 followers
October 18, 2018
This book was okay.
I really enjoyed the overall story. Especially the beginning of he book, I felt it had very strong start. However I felt the book didn't need the romance. I'm usually a sucker for a bit of romance but I just wasn't really feeling it.
Otherwise I enjoyed this book. It was a good story but not necessarily something I could see myself read again.
4 stars.
Profile Image for  ••Camila Roy••.
161 reviews49 followers
July 14, 2018
RATING: 3.75/5

e-ARC provided by Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review

Mari Turner’s life is perfect. That is, at least to her thousands of followers who have helped her become an internet starlet. But when she breaks down and confesses she’s been living a lie, it goes viral and she receives major backlash. To get away from it all, she makes an impulsive decision: to hike the entire John Muir trail. Mari and her late cousin, Bri, were supposed to do it together. With Bri’s boots and trail diary, a heart full of regret, and a group of strangers that she meets along the way, Mari tries to navigate the difficult terrain of the hike. But the true challenge lies within, as she searches for the way back to the girl she fears may be too lost to find: herself.

I found this to be surprisingly relatable.
Our main character, Mari, struggles with maintaining a perfect image on social media. Even if her life is falling apart and she's grieving her cousin, Bri, Mari goes to great extents to appear happy and stable to her followers. Until, eventually, she snaps and the world sees a glimpse of the real her. The sad truth is that most social media influencers (instagramers, youtubers, etc) are not as perfect as we might think, they just pretend to be. This reality was portrayed accurately in the book.

As for the plot and characters, I liked them. There was some character development towards the end and the romance didn't overshadow the main purpose of the book, thankfully. It ended in a very opened but satisfying way. The only issue I have is that it felt a bit rushed. I think the book could've reached its full potential if it had been longer.

Overall, enjoyable and I definitely recommend it!
Profile Image for Tintenhain.
328 reviews23 followers
January 18, 2019
4,5 Sterne
Sehr berührend, ein bisschen mit Weisheiten um sich werfend, aber dafür ist die Liebesgeschichte nicht so schmalzig wie befürchtet. Meinen Kindern könnte das Buch auch gefallen. Mal sehen.

Und hier die vollständige Rezension wie immer auf dem Blog
Profile Image for Ivonne.
Author 1 book95 followers
January 31, 2019
Diese Rezension enthält Spoiler.

Offline ist es nass, wenn’s regnet von Jessi Kirby hat mich ganz unvermittelt getroffen – und zwar mitten ins Herz. Nicht nur die Autorin, sondern auch das Buch waren mir vollends neu, hatte ich noch nie davon gehört. Die Überraschungspost aus dem Loewe Verlag, die mich vor einigen Tagen erreichte, war mithin tatsächlich eine Überraschung. Die Post enthielt allerdings nicht nur das Buch, sondern auch die Herausforderung zu einer Challenge, auf die ich in dieser Rezension zunächst nicht näher eingehen möchte. Hierzu wird in Kürze noch ein separater Beitrag auf meinem Blog online gehen.

Ich las den Klappentext nur flüchtig, fühlte mich aber sofort hingezogen zu Mari und ihrer Geschichte und fing noch am selben Abend an zu lesen und in die Geschichte einzutauchen. Das Ende vom Lied war, dass ich den ganzen Abend und die halbe Nacht in diesem Buch las; bis ich es irgendwann mit nur noch 60 Seiten übrig um drei Uhr nachts irgendwann zur Seite legte, um nicht völlig müde und verschlafen am nächsten Morgen auf der Arbeit zu erscheinen.

Obwohl ich das Buch zur Seite gelegt hatte, schwirrten Mari und ihre Geschichte noch immer in meinem Kopf herum. Sie begleitete mich den ganzen Tag auf der Arbeit und zwar auf eine solch intensive Art und Weise, dass ich mich kaum auf meine Aufgaben konzentrieren konnte, sondern stets auf die Uhr blickte und hoffte, die Zeit würde ein wenig schneller verfliegen, sodass ich nach Hause fahren und endlich das Buch beenden könne.

Ich bin ein unglaublich emotionaler Mensch, manche würden vielleicht zart-besaitet dazu sagen, oder auch sensibel, empfindlich oder mimosenhaft. Ich hingegen bezeichne mich selbst gerne einfach als einen sehr emphatischen und mitfühlenden Mensch; eine Eigenschaft, auf die ich wirklich sehr stolz bin, auch wenn sie mich manchmal in den Wahnsinn treibt. Das bedeutet also, dass es nicht selten vor kommt, dass ich bei einem Buch mal ein paar Tränen vergieße, manchmal mehr, manchmal weniger, doch noch nie ist es mir passiert, dass ich so oft bei einem Buch weinen musste, wie bei diesem hier. Ich war ein emotionales Wrack, von Seite eins an bis Ende und fühlte neben den Tränen, die mir über die Wangen liefen, auch die ganze Zeit dieses warme Kribbeln im Herzen, dass mir mehr als deutlich sagte, dass dies ein Buch ist, dass mich und mein Denken nachhaltig verändern wird. Ich weiß, das ist schon ziemlich groß gesprochen, dennoch entspricht es der Wahrheit. Dieses Buch hat mein Herz berührt; ist mir durch Mark und Bein gegangen und ich bin unendlich dankbar, dass ich es dank des Loewe Verlages lesen durfte, denn ohne diese Überraschungspost, wäre ich wohl niemals auf diesen in meinen Augen absolut großartigen Titel gestoßen.

In dem Buch geht es um Mari, die mit über 500.000 Instagram Followern eine ziemlich bekannte Influencerin ist mit einer recht großen Fangemeinde. Instagram hat zwischenzeitlich einen so wichtigen Teil in ihrem Leben eingenommen, dass sie nur noch für das perfekte Foto lebt. Ihre Mahlzeiten sind bereits kalt, bevor sie mit dem essen beginnt, manchmal isst sie es gar nicht, sondern kippt es direkt in den Müll. Sie spielt ihren Fans eine Beziehung mit einem anderen berühmten Influencer vor, weil Pärchenshots eben mehr Likes und Follower bringen, und lebt ihr Leben praktisch nur noch hinter und vor ihrer Kamera. Doch dann passiert etwas, das ihr gesamtes Leben auf den Kopf stellt. Mari verliert ihre Cousine, Freundin und Seelenverwandte Bri, eine richtige Abenteurerin und Freigeist. Und obwohl sie in den letzten drei Jahren kaum noch Kontakt zueinander hatten, lebten sie beide doch völlig unterschiedliche Leben, trifft Mari dieser Verlust wie ein Schlag ins Gesicht. Schlagartig wird ihr klar, dass sie raus muss aus dieser Fake-Welt, die sie sich mit Hilfe ihres Influencer-Daseins kreiert hat. Und dann fasst sie einen Entschluss: sie möchte ihr Leben nicht mehr nur online leben, sondern auch offline. Sie löscht all ihre Social Media Kanäle und beginnt einen neuen Lebensabschnitt, ein paar Tage nach ihrem 18. Geburtstag, als plötzlich ein riesiges Paket vor ihrer Tür landet, das den Wanderrucksack ihrer Cousine enthält. Bevor Bri starb, hatte sie jede Menge Zeit damit verbracht, ihr nächstes Abenteuer zu planen, den John Muir Trail im Yosemite Nationalpark zu begehen. Aufgrund ihres tragischen Unfalls jedoch würde sie nie dazu kommen, sich diesen Traum zu erfüllen. An Bri’s Stelle macht sich also Mari schließlich auf den Weg. Anfangs völlig unerfahren, unbeholfen und sogar ein wenig hilflos gelangt sie schnell an ihre Grenzen. Doch das Abenteuer, das sie anfangs für Bri beginnt wird schnell zu ihrem ganz eigenen, persönlichen Abenteuer.

Offline ist es nass, wenn’s regnet ist ein Buch über Selbstfindung. Es geht darum, aus unserer digitalen Welt auszubrechen und endlich das Leben wieder lieben zu lernen. Es geht um den puren Genuss von Freiheit; von Abenteuer und hat somit absolut meinen Geschmack getroffen.

“Das Leben ist zu kurz um jeden Tag im gleichen Haus aufzuwachen, jeden Tag dieselben Leute zu sehen und immer das gleiche zu tun. Meine Zeit ist begrenzt und ich will keine Sekunde verschwenden. Ich will alles sehen und im Leben anderer etwas bewirken und ich will glücklich sein.”
Offline ist es nass, wenn’s regnet – Jessi Kirby
Es handelt sich um eine aufregende Abenteuergeschichte mit einem leicht emotionalen, traurigen, fast schon herzzerreißenden Beigeschmack. Der Tod von Bri zieht sich wie ein roter Faden durch die Geschichte, begleitet den Leser, wie er auch Mari auf ihrer Wanderung durch den Yosemite Nationalpark begleitet und hat in mir ein ganz merkwürdiges (nicht negatives) Gefühl ausgelöst. Obwohl ich mich jeden Tag selbst versuche daran zu erinnern, dass das Leben kurz ist; dass man jeden Augenblick bewusst erleben und genießen und nicht zu viel Zeit mit Dingen verbringen sollte, die einen negativ beeinflussen, vergisst man dies in unserer heutigen, schnelllebigen Zeit doch auch schon mal. Maris Geschichte jedoch hat mir wieder einmal vor Augen gefühlt, wie schnell das Leben vorbei sein kann. Und was ist am Ende wichtiger? Die Anzahl der Likes, die man auf ein Foto bekommen hat, oder die wundervollen Momente, die man in seinem Leben erlebt und Erinnerungen, die man dadurch geschaffen hat? Ich möchte mich irgendwann in hoffentlich erst 100 Jahren nicht daran erinnern, wie erfolgreich meine Fotos auf Instagram waren, sondern an die Momente, die mein Leben zu etwas ganz Besonderem gemacht haben. Dieser Gedanke entfällt einem in der heutigen Gesellschaft viel zu häufig, egal wie sehr wir uns auch bemühen, umso wichtiger ist es, dass wir immer wieder mit der Nase drauf gestoßen werden und Bücher wie diese sind dafür genau das Richtige und insbesondere auch im Jugendbuchbereich unglaublich wichtig.

Auf ihrer Wanderung trifft Marie auf die verschiedensten Leute und bleibt schließlich bei einer Gruppe Jugendlicher hängen, der sie sich anschließt. Obwohl ich es auch als toll empfunden hätte, hätte Mari die gesamte Reise tatsächlich alleine verbracht, empfand ich ihr Zusammentreffen mit der kleinen Gruppe junger Leute sehr erfrischend, schloss ich sie allesamt gleich in mein Herz. Sie passten irgendwie in die Geschichte rein, bereicherten sie teilweise sogar ein bisschen und machten das Abenteuer noch ein wenig aufregender. Auch was die Romanze angeht muss ich sagen, dass die Autorin hier wirklich sehr gute Arbeit geleistet hat. Statt die Romanze in den Vordergrund zu stellen, wird sie nur zu einem unterschwelligen Teil der Geschichte; ein kleiner Nebenschauplatz eben. Der Fokus liegt nicht plötzlich auf der herannahenden Liebesgeschichte, sondern nach wie vor auf Mari, ihrem Vorhaben, ihrem Plan und ihrer Selbstfindung. Dieses Buch enthält meiner Meinung nach mithin die genau richtige Portion an Romantik, ohne, dass es die Geschichte an sich stören würde.

Das Zusammenspiel der Charaktere ist einmalig; die Szenerie einfach bombastisch. Ich war noch nie im Yosemite Nationalpark, habe allerdings schon einige Dokumentationen und Fotos gesehen und mir auch Erzählungen Bekannter angehört, die tatsächlich schon dort auf Wanderschaft waren und kann sagen, dass sich mein Wunsch, einmal selbst dort zu wandern, durch dieses Buch nur noch verstärkt hat. Am liebsten wäre ich sofort in meine Wanderschuhe geschlüpft, hätte meinen Rucksack gepackt und den nächsten Flug nach Kalifornien gebucht. Wenn dieses Buch eins auslöst, dann ist es Fernweh.

Es gibt nur einen Aspekt, der mich etwas gestört hat und zwar war dies die zum Ende hin immer mehr in Vergessenheit geratene Beziehung zwischen Mari und ihrer Mutter. Ich kann absolut verstehen, dass Mari Zeit für sich selbst brauchte und dass sie all das alleine durchziehen wollte, doch die Tatsache, dass die Mutter am Ende vollends aus den Augen verloren wurde, empfand ich als ein wenig schade, gerade weil Mari immer wieder im Laufe der Geschichte erwähnte, dass sie sich noch bei ihrer Mutter melden wird. Ihre Mutter ist zu Hause wahrscheinlich gestorben vor Angst. Meiner Meinung nach war es daher ein wenig rücksichtslos von Mari. Ich hätte nicht mal gewollt, dass sie ihr tagtäglich von ihren Abenteuern berichtet, doch so alle paar Tage ein kurzes „Hi Mom, ich bin noch am Leben“-Update wäre – wie ich finde – schon echt drin gewesen. Diesbezüglich war mir das Ende einfach zu abrupt; zu schnell, insbesondere nachdem die Autorin sich so viel Zeit gelassen hat, Maris und Bris Geschichte zu erzählen.

Ich finde es wirklich unheimlich, wie digital unsere Welt zwischenzeitlich geworden ist. Manchmal sehne ich mich zurück in meine Kindheit, als Facebook & Co. noch Niemandem ein Begriff waren; als es noch kein WLAN gab, sondern bloß diese lahmen Modem, die immer einen riesen Krach veranstalteten, wenn man sich ins Internet einloggte, und als noch dieser verhängnisvolle Internet-Knopf am Handy immer eine Panikattacke verursachte, wenn man versehentlich drauf drückte. Ich bin mir ziemlich sicher, dass wir alle um einiges glücklicher und befreiter wären, würden wir uns nicht so von Social Media & Co. abhängig machen und uns beeinflussen lassen; uns selbst unter Druck setzen, wie auch Mari es in ihrem Leben als Influencerin getan hat. Ich hoffe daher sehr, dass dieses Buch viele zum Nachdenken anregt und vielleicht sogar inspiriert, selbst einmal einen Gang runter zu schalten. Natürlich muss jeder für sich selbst wissen, was einen glücklich macht, wenn es 1.000 Likes auf einem Instagram Foto sind, ist das eben so, allerdings frage ich mich, ob das auf Dauer wirklich gesund sein kann und wirklich glücklich macht.


Absolut. Es ist eines dieser Bücher, das ich am liebsten jedem in die Hand drücken möchte. Insbesondere denjenigen, die sich einfach viel zu sehr unter Druck setzen was Instagram & Co. angeht, kann ich das Buch nur ans Herz legen. Doch nicht nur deswegen ist es das Buch Wert, gelesen zu werden, sondern auch aufgrund der unglaublich emotionalen und berührenden Geschichte von Mari & Bri und auch wegen der unglaublich schönen Szenerie, die sich einem bietet und dem Fernweh, das dieses Buch auslöst. Auch wenn es ein paar wenige Dinge gab, die mich nicht zu 100 % überzeugen konnte, zähle ich das Buch dennoch zu meinen Herzensbüchern, denn es hat mich auf eine Weise berührt, wie es tatsächlich nur die wenigstens Bücher schaffen. Dieses Buch ist für mich etwas ganz Besonderes und ich hoffe wirklich sehr, dass es jeder, der dieses Buch liest, so empfinden wird.

Ich bin übrigens auch so begeistert von der Autorin, dass ich mir umgehend auch all ihre anderen Bücher bestellt habe, auf die ich mich schon riesig freue.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Erin.
49 reviews
June 22, 2018
I received this book through Goodreads First Reads.

I don't have much to say about this one. I thought the author did a good job with the writing and describing the hiking scenes. Overall, it was a nice story even though I felt it was a bit predictable.
Profile Image for Alexa.
2,146 reviews11.3k followers
June 23, 2018
4.5 stars! I’ve never imagined myself going on a hike, but after reading this book (even with all of stressful things that happen), I’m feeling inspired to go on even a little one of my own. Also, this was just so well-written and it made me very emotional at certain points!
Profile Image for Shannon (It Starts At Midnight).
1,144 reviews1,009 followers
August 7, 2018
You can find the full review and all the fancy and/or randomness that accompanies it at It Starts at Midnight


I was so, so certain that I was going to love this book. Survival components, feels, finding oneself, I love all those things! But at the end of the day, some of those aspects just fell short and I didn't quite love this as much as I'd hoped.

The Things I Liked:

I love a good survival story! And it was one, no question. Mari is out on the John Muir Trail (which I spent lots of time looking up stuff about, the author did a good job of setting that scene for sure!) and it's not an easy hike. For some time, she's super alone, and that has to be harrowing for anyone, let alone someone without the experience under her belt. I liked it even more when it added extra characters to the mix, because the more people surviving, the more fun it is, for some reason.

Character growth was definitely on point. Mari wanted to take this journey for a lot of reasons, but growth was definitely top of the list. And grow she did! She had to face a lot of things about herself that she didn't like or didn't want to admit, and she definitely did that. It was nice to see her go through such a personal learning experience.

The Things I Didn't:

It was just so unbelievable to me. My Kindle notes look like "but NO, no one would ever DO that!" and then a bunch of emojis and exclamation points because I was getting stabby. Look, I know some people are risk takers, certainly more than others. But I simply did not buy that this girl, who was only a literal day before completely obsessed with her internet presence, decides to just bag the whole thing, delete everything, and take off on a long hiking trek. When she has never hiked further than the mailbox. I get the cousin's death jarring something inside of her, but that had happened before all of this, so it hardly felt like the impetus for such a drastic change? Or, if it was, it probably should have been a little more clearly defined as such- it felt so, so sudden.

Not only was it wholly unbelievable, it was dangerous! Okay now I definitely sound like someone's parent, but wow, this was a terrible choice. While I loved that the journey empowered her, I don't know that risking her life to "find herself" is really the best plan ever? Especially when her cousin died training for this actual hike. Which I guess brings me back around to the unbelievability piece.

Even though there was danger addressed, the stakes didn't feel that high, and a lot of the scary stuff was easily resolved. And again, without experience and training, a lot of it was just summed up to... Mari getting lucky, honestly. Which felt far too easy. 

Her food issues weren't addressed. It seemed like Mari had a bit of an unhealthy relationship with food, and some body image issues, and I felt like these were kind of glossed over. It was like somehow now that she was off social media these problems vanished, and sorry, that isn't how that works.

Lie of omission trope was in full effect. Gosh, I am not a fan of this. Like she was hiding stuff from her fellow hikers. Lots of stuff, lots of times, and look, we all know that's going to end badly. Everyone will get their feelings hurt, lots of awkwardness when the truth comes out, you know the drill. Maybe it's just a pet peeve of mine, but it is, and this is my review, so there you have it.

Bottom Line: While I loved the character growth and hiking/survival aspects of the story, the plot as a whole didn't feel believable enough for me to fully invest. 
Profile Image for The Candid Cover (Olivia & Lori).
1,172 reviews1,305 followers
March 4, 2022
Full Review on The Candid Cover

4.5 Stars.

The Other Side of Lost by Jessi Kirby is an emotional story about grief and rediscovering yourself. Following an ex-social media star who takes her cousin’s place hiking the perilous John Muir trail, this is a thought-provoking story with a complex main character. In addition to Mari’s inspiring journey to re-discover herself, I loved the book’s emphasis on friendship. This is a powerful read that is sure to tug at your heartstrings.

After social media influencer Mari breaks down and admits to living a lie, she decides it’s time to get away and escape the backlash. In order to unplug, she decides to take her cousin’s place on the daunting John Muir hike–the hike they were supposed to do together before Bri passed away. Armed with Bri’s diary and meticulous plans, Mari takes on the hike by herself and discovers her true self along the way.


I loved Mari’s character arc, and she is so well written that I could feel her emotions. At the beginning of the book, Mari is obsessed with social media, but behind her online persona is insecurity. When the thing she has dedicated her life to comes crashing down, she is forced to re-evaluate and confront the parts of herself she has buried beneath the surface. Throughout the book, Mari faces many challenges, both physically and mentally, but I enjoyed how she pushes herself to persevere, despite being a novice hiker who is grieving at the same time.


One of my favourite parts about the book, besides the gorgeous descriptions of nature, is its focus on friendship. The dynamics between Mari and Bri are complicated, and Mari’s social media obsession ended up tarnishing her friendship with her cousin. After Bri’s death, the regret Mari feels along the hike pierced my heart, but I loved how she is able to connect with Bri again through Bri’s journals. This one also contains some fantastic side characters, and I enjoyed getting to know the other hikers Mari meets. The group Mari finds herself hiking with is so supportive, and it is through friendship and genuine connection that she is able to truly blossom.


The Other Side of Lost by Jessi Kirby is a powerful story about grief and self-discovery. I loved following the main character as she hikes the John Muir trail, and Mari is such a complex main character. This one also highlights friendship, and I fell in love with the hikers Mari meets on the way. I would definitely recommend this to those looking for a thought-provoking and moving read.
Profile Image for nick (the infinite limits of love).
2,120 reviews1,348 followers
August 15, 2018

Well friends, I think this book just about broke me. Jessi Kirby never fails to deliver on emotive stories about grief, growing up and love. The Other Side of Lost was another wonderful and heartwrenching story from her that absolutely moved me.

At the center of The Other Side of Lost is Mari, an Instagram-famous young woman who seems to have a perfect life. In reality, however, Mari's social media presence is well-curated and a complete facade. Underneath it all, she is deeply grieving the death of her cousin, Bri, especially with the way they left things off. On their shared birthday, in a moment of absolute sorrow, she uploads a video revealing to the Internet just how broken she is, only to have the video go viral and inciting hate comments. The same day, she receives a package from her aunt with Bri's boots and travel diary with her plans to hike the John Muir trail that she died training for. On a whim, Mari decides to complete Bri's hike.

My heart broke for Mari. Kirby made her every emotion pop off the pages. Her grief, her guilt, and her strength truly came to life in The Other Side of Lost. She was a young woman who had really lost herself because of her social media popularity and in this book, we begin to see her change into someone truly inspirational. As she faced obstacle after obstacle on the hike, Mari slowly matured and learned to love and forgive herself again. It was not easy for her, but I was proud of her and everything that she achieved. I will admit that you have to set reality aside for a little bit with The Other Side of Lost - it seems very unlikely that Mari could just complete the hike with very little hiking experience or training given that Bri died training hard for it - but that did not take away from my enjoyment of the book. I thought that despite this loophole, the lessons in the book will touch every reader.

I loved how much of Bri and her relationship with Mari we got to experience in The Other Side of Lost. She was an outgoing, adventurous and lovely young woman who made a mark on every person she encountered. I loved how Jessi Kirby showed the impact that Bri had on Mari and Bri's personality through her care packages to herself along the trail and the diary entries. Along the trail, Mari also befriends a wonderful group of teens who become important pillars to her. I love how they balanced out the sadness of the book with their humor. She also finds a sweet love interest in the form of Josh. The romance was not a huge part of the book, but what was there was enough to have me smiling like a dork. I also was absolutely fascinated by the John Muir trail along the Sierra Nevada - Jessi Kirby makes you feel like you were right along with Mari on this journey.

The Other Side of Lost made me feel all the emotions and I'm so happy I decided to read the book. I think this is one of those stories that will appeal to YA and adult readers alike.
Profile Image for Jassi.
120 reviews
March 24, 2022
Ein wichtiges Buch für Jugendliche die sich mit den Social Media Kanälen konfrontiert sehen und den Druck verspüren sich mit Anderen vergleichen zu müssen...

Wie im Buch beschrieben sind dies häufig Fake-Welten...das Wenigste ist echt!!!

Leider hat dieses Buch meine Erwartungen nicht erfüllen können....unter anderem weil ich mich mit einem "Instagramleben" nicht identifizieren kann.
Auch finde ich es sehr schwierig, dass hier ein 18 jähriges Mädchen beschrieben wird welches zwar aus guten Gründen, aber absolut unvorbereitet auf diese sehr anspruchsvolle Tour geht 🙈....das ist einfach sehr dumm dies zu tun.
Ich habe selber schon erlebt wie unvorbereitet und leichtsinnig viele Menschen sich auf eine solche Tour, Klettersteige, Hüttenwanderungen, Klettertouren oder Ähnliches einlassen. Und dann, welch Überraschung, sich und andere Menschen in Gefahr bringen...und dann von der Bergwacht den Rangern oder anderen Personen gerettet werden müssen!!!
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Madison.
1,065 reviews59 followers
June 6, 2018
Jessi Kirby is no stranger to writing heartfelt stories that touch on grief and strength in the face of it, and she does it again so expertly in The Other Side of Lost. Grief, loneliness, the cost of false facades and things you can’t undo are combined with the beauty of nature, the importance of friendship and the strength and resilience that can be found within. The Other Side of Lost made me want to grab a pair of hiking boots and hit a trail.

Mari has constructed an identity online, carefully editing and filtering for optimum followers and likes. But online celebrity cost her a relationship with her cousin, and on her eighteenth birthday, evaluating where’s she come from and all that she has lost, she decides to throw everything away. After posting a video online outing herself and her false identity, she takes up her cousin’s plans to hike the John Muir Trail. Over 200 miles will push Mari to her limits, but it just might give her the chance to start over.

I’ve read a few books where characters decide to take up a big hike or venture into the unknown. The physical test never fails to offset emotional and mental endurance. I loved how in The Other Side of Lost it doesn’t come easy for Mari. She dislikes hiking, is totally unprepared and basically has no idea what she’s doing. It doesn’t come easy but she perseveres anyway. I enjoyed her journey and connected with her grief and her feelings of inadequacy.

Friendship plays a strong part in this book. Reflecting on the close connection she lost with her cousin, Mari mourns the friendship that her online identity cost her. Yet through her journey and Bri’s journals and letters, Mari begins to rediscover that connection. Mari also falls in with a group of hikers, quickly forging lively banter and later deeper friendships. There is also a hint of romance within the story - stolen kisses and shared connection between the stars. It doesn’t take over the plot, though, as the story belongs to Mari and her self-discovery.

Through moments of reflection, gorgeous scenery, and endurance, The Other Side of Lost is a delightful story of self-discover and starting over, of enjoying and fully immersing yourself in life.

The publishers provided an advanced readers copy of this book for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own.

Find more reviews, reading age guides, content advisory, and recommendations on my blog Madison's Library
Profile Image for Tammy.
471 reviews
February 14, 2019
3.5 Stars This book made me nostalgic for the summer I lived in Yosemite and the very few miles that I hiked on the John Muir Trail. Since my time there I've always imagined what it would be like to hike all 211 miles of the John Muir Trail. I loved the descriptions of the hiking and scenery and felt like I was experiencing the trail from the comfort of my own home. I wanted more development from the characters and the ending felt too rushed. I'm okay with not everything being resolved by the end of the story, but it felt like there wasn't any closure. Like the book was missing a couple of chapters.

Popsugar 2019 Challenge - A book that makes you nostalgic & A book with an item of clothing or accessory on the cover
Profile Image for alice.
269 reviews333 followers
August 14, 2018
see this review and others at arctic books!

I believe this is my first Jessi Kirby novel, and it was sweet, short, and emotional. This novel follows Mari as she attempts to hike the daunting 211 miles of the John Muir trail. Along the way, she deals with the death of her cousin Bri and meets new friends during her trip.

Mari is an internet star, and she posts about how her life isn’t as picturesque as it seems. As a result, she receives a lot of negative attention and decides to hike the John Muir trail in Bri’s shoes (literally). I’m not a huge fan of social media-related stories, I’ve realized, but I’m glad that social media was only a very small portion of the novel – something that just pushed the plot. The rest of the novel is quite the opposite – we go along with Mari during her hike, so we get a lot of nature and gorgeous imagery.

Mari is dealing with the grief after her cousin Bri died, and it was nice to see Mari be able to eventually talk about Bri’s death with her friends. There was also a cute romance between her and Josh, and it’s definitely not the focal point of this novel, which I liked. Kirby does a great job of maintaining the theme of staying true to yourself but also pushing yourself to do something scary and new. My only reservation was that I felt like at some points, this novel lagged.

Overall, I enjoyed this novel! This is a really great summer read, dealing with themes of grief, death, hiking, social media, and romance. If you’re looking for a cute, emotional read, be sure to pick this one up!

Thank you to Harper for providing an advance copy in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Delia.
201 reviews172 followers
December 3, 2019
This is exactly what I needed 🌟🌟🌟🌟
Profile Image for ThatBookGal.
669 reviews89 followers
January 8, 2019
I absolutely loved this book, and wanted so badly to give it 5 stars, but the ending fell short of where I wanted it to go so I've knocked a star off.

Mari's story is a familiar one. A young girl obsessed with her online profile, appearing as one person, but in reality someone totally different. She's lost touch with reality, her friends, her family, even going so far as having a fake relationship for the sake of her social media. It takes a massive shock, and the loss of her cousin to bring her out of the screen, and remind her to live again.

I loved all the characters in the book, each and every one felt genuine, and were relatable in some way or another. Bri managed to light up the page every time she was mentioned, Mari's grief evident but handled delicately. The shining star of the story was undoubtably the John Muir Trail and the nature. I've never been more inspired to pack a pair of boots and get outside. The lengthy passages describing the setting were so beautifully written, I felt as though I'd been on a journey too, albeit minus the blisters.

The only downside for me was the lack of conclusion, I wanted to see Mari reunited with her mother. Returning to normal life, and learning to outgrow and cope without the character she had portrayed herself as. After reading the dedication at the back of the book, I think I understand why Jessi decided to skip this from the story entirely, but I still would have liked to take those final steps with Mari.

This was such a pleasant read, and I happened to accidentally pick it up at the perfect time for me. If you want a simple, contemporary read, with a sweet group of friends, this is the one for you.
Profile Image for Samantha (WLABB).
3,432 reviews234 followers
August 20, 2022
Mari had spent so many years curating her life, that she forgot to actually live it. Following her cousin's death, she felt adrift, lost, and she hoped following in Bri's footsteps would lead her back to herself.

• Pro: My emotions! My emotions! There were so many tears during this book. I cried for Bri and the things she would never do. I cried for Mari and the years she wasted, but there were also plenty of happy tears shed. Every one of Mari's successes filled me with joy, and I loved seeing her point of view change.

• Pro: This is my third book featuring some serious, hardcore hiking, and I was once again captivated by the trials, tribulations, and accomplishments of those who do this sort of thing. I know you are going to think, "How can Mari just walk onto that trail?" BUT, Kirby did not make it sound easy, by any means, and she gave her plenty of assistance. Regardless, I was still really inspired by the whole trip.

• Pro: The Sierras sound absolutely breathtaking. Kirby took us on a physical and visual tour of the John Muir trail, and it was such a special treat getting to "see" it.

• Pro: Mari was so lucky to meet Josh and all his friends. Not only did they help her novice self navigate the trail, but they gave her something she had needed more than she realized - genuine human interaction. The friendship they shared was really special.

• Pro: One of the items Mari found in Bri's pack was her journal. I loved getting to peek at the daily entries, because they were positive, inspiring, and also adorably illustrated. I thought it was a fantastic way for Bri to encourage Mari, and a brilliant way for us to get to know Bri as well.

• Pro: The ending was really beautiful and appropriate. I was left with some tears, but I was smiling through those tears.

Overall: A beautiful and touching story of one woman's physical, mental, and emotional journey of self discovery. I was all in from the very beginning and loved every second of it.

*ARC provided in exchange for an honest review.

Profile Image for Jennifer.
1,843 reviews
August 12, 2018
The Other Side of Lost is a standalone Young Adult novel.

The narrator is 18 year old Mari. When the book begins we see Mari and her cousin when they were 13. They were best friends. However in the next chapter Mari is 18 and something has happened to her cousin.

Mari is an instagram sensation. But she feels like that life is a lie. When they were kids Mari and her cousin Bri had said that they were going to do a very extensive hike. But will Mari do it alone?

This book has an interesting and original premise. It is about self-discovery and friendship and so much more. However, I did find it completely unrealistic that anyone without any hiking experience would even consider what Mari was considering. It was so reckless and dangerous.

There were definitely some things that I liked about this book. But the romance was very under-developed. Also I wanted more at the end. The book just ended and it would have been nice to have had some things resolved.

Thanks to edelweiss and HarperTeen for allowing me to read this book.
Profile Image for L. | That_Bookdragon.
252 reviews12 followers
February 14, 2019
5/5 ⭐ and I truly wish I could give it an even higher rating

There are some books you enjoy reading, some books you don't. And then, there are the books which truly remind you what a book is supposed to do to you. As Cassandra Clare said, "Words have the power to change us". Getting into this book, I was not feeling extremely great due to mental health issues but this little object reminded me what we, as humans, are supposed to do with our lives. So no I'm not going to say it cured my anxiety and other mental health issues I am victim of, but it opened my eyes. It reminded me that there's more than our everyday problems and that, perhaps, living is as simple as going outside and being reminded how small we truly are in this universe.

This story is the story of Mari, an eighteen-year-old Instagram star who pretends to have the perfect life on social medias but, inside, feels empty. She used to be close with her cousin, Bri, but they drifted away from each other and sadly, one day Bri was the victim of a tragic accident which cost her her life. On the day of her birthday, Mari receives from her aunt all the hiking material her cousin Bri took all around the world with her and decides to honor her memory by going on this hike by herself after breaking down and closing all her social medias account once and for all.

I won't say more about the plot, but truly this story is a phenomenal tale about going on a (literal) journey of self-discovery, about challenges, friendship, nature and so much more. If you are struggling (like me) to find your place in the universe and struggling with mental illness, I highly suggest reading this book. I randomly picked it up and truly it helped me lift my spirits again.
Profile Image for Christy.
621 reviews254 followers
February 13, 2018
Initial thoughts:
I really don’t know how to feel about this book. On one hand it was such a fast read and unputdownable. But on the other, it was very unrealistic.

Full review:
The Other Side Of Lost was a quick and engaging read! I’ve read every Jessi Kirby book and I have really enjoyed all of them! This one included, however it wasn’t my favorite.

One one hand this book was unputdownable, I was engaged in the story and with the characters. I felt so bad for Mari and what she was going through. I really enjoyed the other characters as well, they each added a little extra to the story.

My issue with this story was that to me, it felt a little unrealistic. Here’s where I’m going to get spoilery so beware.............
Ok so Mari goes on this 200+ mile hike that her cousin died training for? Really? You want me to believe that someone who has no training can just go on that type of hike at the drop of the hat? Especially after knowing that her cousin who had been doing this sort of adventurous activity all her life had actively train for it and that she died training for this type of hike? I find that highly unrealistic. But that is just my opinion.

Like I said, I enjoyed the actual story and the characters, I just found that one (huge) aspect completely unbelievable which is why I gave it a 3 star rating.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Marochka.
845 reviews
January 10, 2020
В целом, книга весьма неплоха. Как всегда у Кирби: вроде бы, все просто, но с глубоким смыслом и берет за душу.
Все же, как известно, я терпеть не могу «походные» книги. И я не скажу, что эта выделяется из ряда своих предшественников.
Иногда читать о том, как героиня просто идет (немного страдая и мучаясь), философствуя на разные темы, достаточно интересно. Но такое бывает редко. И от этого быстро устаешь.
Начало и середина книги откровенно были скучными. Да, было жаль Мари, которая потеряла близкого человека, предварительно по своей глупости от него отдалившись. Но этой жалости лично мне не хватало, чтобы не взгрустнуть, читая описания того, как г��роиня просто идет, страдая от боли, холода и других физических проблем.
Не скажу, что когда в книге появились новые герои, стало безумно весело и интересно, но уж точно лучше, чем было. Я понимаю, что романтика здесь не главное (в отличие от непростой темы любви в «О чем знаешь сердцем»), но как-то уж слишком фоновой и внезапной она была. Тоже немного скучно.
Пока я читала, упорно думала, что книга средняя и оценку я ей поставлю соответствующую. Но, как всегда, в конце автор смогла ввести трогательную сцену и милые философские размышления о жизни героини, которые зацепили меня, и, в итоге, от книги осталось впечатление (воспоминание?) более радужное, чем я ожидаа.
А вот что касается логики героев… Ну не могу я спокойно читать такие книги, хоть что тут делай. Получается, кузина Мари всю свою жизнь готовилась к тому, чтобы пройти по тропе Джона Мьюра. Она тренировалась, у нее было много опыта, и при всем при этом она погибла еще во время подготовки к тропе. Что же делает Мари, у которой нет ни знаний, ни опыта? Отправляется в этот путь без какой-либо подготовки в полном одиночестве. Я много книг читала, где героини умом не блещут, но, пожалуй, Мари войдет в «топ-5» самых глупых книжных героинь в моем списке. Совершенно очевидно, что автор не позволит ничему ужасному случиться с ее персонажем, но умнее Мари от этого не кажется.
А вообще книга ну очень сильно напоминает «The Secrets We Bury» by Stacie Ramey. Да и на другие книги о путешественниках она тоже очень похожа. Только вот в таких историях авторы обычно любят подпустить опасности, а у Кирби все было как-то уж слишком просто: максимум раздумий, минимум событий.
Проанализировав книгу, я понимаю, что она не слишком сильно мне понравилась. Но повторю: из-за финала, который тронул меня, от нее остались приятные ощущения, которые я запомнила лучше, чем менее впечатляющие моменты. Поэтому и оценка достаточно высокая.
P.S.: хотя Джесси Кирби мне, в общем-то, нравится, у меня часто после прочтения ее книг (а я читала ни одну, и даже не две ее книги) остается неоднозначное впечатление: воде бы, и хорошо, но, в то же время, есть к истории немало претензий.

Итоговая оценка: 7/10
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