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Lonesome Dove (Lonesome Dove, #1)
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PAST Group Reads 2018 > Lonesome Dove, Part 3 of 3- Summer- SPOILER THREAD

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message 1: by [deleted user] (last edited Jul 26, 2018 06:32AM) (new)

Image result for lonesome dove cattle drive to nebraska
mage: slaphappylarry


message 2: by [deleted user] (last edited Jul 26, 2018 06:33AM) (new)

FAVORITE PASSAGES/QUOTES


message 3: by [deleted user] (new)

I started part 3 today. I'll post some pics when I get to my desktop.


message 4: by [deleted user] (new)

Image result for newt lonesome dove actor
image: moviedude

Love this pic of Newt


message 5: by [deleted user] (last edited Jul 27, 2018 02:21AM) (new)

I finished reading.

Wow! 5 stars


Jacinta | 70 comments What did you like best about it?


message 7: by [deleted user] (last edited Jul 27, 2018 07:03AM) (new)

I like books that are story driven but they have to have a great character base. Call and Gus were older and Civil War heroes. Their no nonsense approach to life spoke to me. They were real to me.

There are four books in this series and they are all on my TBR.
https://www.goodreads.com/series/49395

I love the western genre, I'm slowly reading through Louis L'Amour books.


Parker | 204 comments Karen, you might also want to check out the Longmire series, by Craig Johnson. They take place in modern day Wyomingand are really good.


message 9: by [deleted user] (new)

Parker, you are right. I have read Longmire (I love you, Walt!) and anxiously await the next book publishing next month.


Parker | 204 comments Karen, I'll be on the lookout for it--thanks for the heads up! My favourite character (although I adore Walt) is Henry.

To get this back on topic, Wyoming is very much a "character" in these books, much like the places in Lonesome Dove are "characters".


message 11: by [deleted user] (new)

Right, if this whole story had taken place exclusively in Texas it would have been a completely different tale.


Jacinta | 70 comments If the places are characters, which I think is a great way to put it, what do you think of (view spoiler)


message 13: by [deleted user] (new)

What an interesting question, Jacinta. Mostly symbolic, I think.

(view spoiler)


message 14: by Sue (new) - rated it 5 stars

Sue K H (sky_bluez) | 68 comments I finished this today. Wow, what a book! I rated it 5 stars. I'll post some thoughts later.


message 15: by Paula (last edited Jul 31, 2018 08:31PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Paula Parker wrote: "Karen, I'll be on the lookout for it--thanks for the heads up! My favourite character (although I adore Walt) is Henry.

To get this back on topic, Wyoming is very much a "character" in these books..."


I agree wholeheartedly about the setting. Using such detailed descriptions of the landscape and the hardships traveling through the various states to end up at the destination piques each of the five senses. A real visual experience if nothing else.


Paula The Pulitzer community of judges were spot-on in selecting this one as a winner!


message 17: by [deleted user] (new)

Sue wrote: "I finished this today. Wow, what a book! I rated it 5 stars. I'll post some thoughts later."

5 stars for me too, what an incredible story - incredible writing! I plan to read the other books in the series.


message 18: by [deleted user] (new)

Paula wrote: "The Pulitzer community of judges were spot-on in selecting this one as a winner!"

Yes, they were. I'm sorry I didn't read this when it was first published.


Jen from Quebec :0) (muppetbaby99) | 23 comments It was thanks to this group that I borrowed a copy of the book from a cousin (despite Westerns NOT being 'my thing') and I ATE IT UP! I inhaled this book! Fantastic storytelling, world-building, dialogue, and lots + lots of heartbreak.

After finishing this LONG epic, I needed MORE so I borrowed the set of DVDs from my parents (1988 6 hour mini-series, starring Tommy Lee Jones + Robert Duvall- ON YOUTUBE as well, if ppl are interested) and I also got the audiobook of the sequel (The sequel is Streets of Laredo ).

Well....the sequel. *SIGHS* *sobs* Only 1 hour into the LOOONG audiobook, I think I am actually going to DNF this one! I loved Lonesome Dove so very much, and yet within the 1st hour of the sequel, every character that I wanted to read more about is dead! And not even in a well-written way, but 'offscreen', you know? Something like "so and so died back in the winter but the weather was good"...and that would be it! McMurtry inexplicably just....threw away many main characters in this fashion!

I was/am so upset that I have put 'Laredo' aside and am instead soaking up the DVDs of the 'Lonesome Dove' films.

Why, McMurtry, why!?? ---Jen from Quebec :0(


message 20: by [deleted user] (new)

OH NO! Disappointing.

I'm just finishing up a couple other long books, I want to read several books short, fast reads to cleanse the palate (if you know what I mean). I don't have a solid plan to read the other books in the series, sometime next year.

Just today, I got the tv dvd's from the library and plan to watch them over the next couple days.


Paula Karen wrote: "
mage: slaphappylarry"


Well, isn't this just as cool as a breeze blowing across a country porch?


message 22: by [deleted user] (last edited Aug 01, 2018 07:28AM) (new)

Paula wrote: "Karen wrote: "
mage: slaphappylarry"

Well, isn't this just as cool as a breeze blowing across a country porch?"


Lol, do you mean this thread? The book??
The pic of the map???


Diane I just finished Lonesome Dove last night and rated it 5 star. I also liked the character development. I had never read a western before. Not too fond of the violence - but life was rough in the Old West.

Spoiler (Not sure how to mark this so it is covered up):

A few standouts to me were 1) when Call wished he had give Newt his name vs. his horse and 2) how Gus wished he was back with the cowboys when he was traveling with Lorena (be careful what you wish for Gus).


message 24: by NancyJ, Moderator (new) - added it

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
Karen and others.. Does anyone want a spoiler thread, or can we assume that people won't read this thread until they've finished?

Karen go ahead and create one if you think it's needed or call this the spoiler thread. I think we need to have a place to discuss things deeply and freely.


message 25: by NancyJ, Moderator (new) - added it

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
Jennifer Lynn wrote: "It was thanks to this group that I borrowed a copy of the book from a cousin (despite Westerns NOT being 'my thing') and I ATE IT UP! I inhaled this book! Fantastic storytelling, world-building, di..."

Jennifer Lynn wrote: "It was thanks to this group that I borrowed a copy of the book from a cousin (despite Westerns NOT being 'my thing') and I ATE IT UP! I inhaled this book! Fantastic storytelling, world-building, di..."

Well thanks for the warning! Maybe he intended it as a standalone book, but some editor said "Sequels sell, make it a sequel!"


message 26: by [deleted user] (new)

Beware... there be spoilers here.


message 27: by NancyJ, Moderator (new) - added it

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
Paula wrote: "The Pulitzer community of judges were spot-on in selecting this one as a winner!"

I agree. I've only read 13 fiction books that received the Pulitzer, and they're all quite different. I like that. I lost count, but I think at least 5, maybe 10? of the GAR books won Pulitzers.


message 28: by NancyJ, Moderator (last edited Aug 03, 2018 12:50AM) (new) - added it

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
Diane wrote: "I just finished Lonesome Dove last night and rated it 5 star. I also liked the character development. I had never read a western before. Not too fond of the violence - but life was rough in the Old..."

Karen marked the thread as a spoiler, so speak freely here.

When you do need a spoiler block, you can find the instructions right above the comment box. Look for (Some html is ok). Before the sentence you want to hide, type the word spoiler in between <>, and at the end, type /spoiler in between the <>.
It follows the same logic for the italics you see when you reply to someone's post.


message 29: by NancyJ, Moderator (last edited Aug 22, 2018 03:52PM) (new) - added it

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
Pam wrote: "I just finished the book this morning and then watched the last episode of the mini-series. I was surprised at how accurately the tv show followed the book. I did notice that the last dialogue in t..."

Pam wrote: "I just finished the book this morning and then watched the last episode of the mini-series. I was surprised at how accurately the tv show followed the book. I did notice that the last dialogue in t..."

I'm in part 3 now, but I saw the whole show, so I'm not concerned about spoilers.

Random topics...

Jacinta mentioned Wyoming,but as I was listening, I wasn't always sure where they were, so I need to look at the book (and map) to connect places and events. One thing that really stuck in my head about the landscape of the plains (Nebraska?), was the area where there were no trees. His descriptions evoked a stark sense of loneliness, and vulnerability. There were few places to hide from people or the wind.

I loved the bit about Jake's new "friends" who wanted to become Regulators. (Which is a lot like modern gangsters who demand protection money from store owners.) I just learned about the Regulators in the 1770's North Carolina while reading The Fiery Cross, in the Outlander series (so good). It was a part of history I never heard of before this year.

I thought it was funny that the different groups kept meeting up with one another. What were the odds across all those states?

I really want to talk about the women later on, as well as Newt and Call. (Later, after I finish the book)

I loved the scenes (at the end of the miniseries) when Call was bringing Gus back. It reminded me so much of a wonderful independent film called The Straight Story, where an old man travels by lawn mower over a long distance to see his estranged brother before he dies. There was something about Call's demeanor and all the people talking to him about what he was doing that reminded me of that film. If you haven't seen it, I recommend it.


message 30: by Joy, Your Obedient Servant (new) - rated it 3 stars

Joy (jammons42) | 510 comments Mod
I've just finished this book. I don't know where to start.

I loved the settings. I loved the friendship between Gus and Call. I loved Clara. I loved Deets. I loved when the stories crossed.

I didn't love how the women were mostly talked about in the book, though I understand it. Most of it seemed unnecessary to me. I didn't love the end of the Call/Newt relationship. I didn't love how annoying and seemingly useless most of the minor characters were.


Jacinta | 70 comments J., I agree with a lot of what you said. I loved Clara and Deets too; Clara was my favorite.

I also had mixed feelings about the book's treatment of women, which is part of why I found the introduction of Clara to be a breath of fresh air. She was tough and soft and had agency - Lorena ultimately lacked agency and Elmira was tough without really being relatable, so it was refreshing to encounter a woman who was admittedly beaten down by the difficult times but who still loved and lived. That she was the woman Gus could never forget said something positive about him, I think.

I somewhat enjoyed Gus and Lorena's dynamic and how safe she felt with him, but the fact that he still slept with her sometimes took away from that.

And I definitely agree about some of the minor characters. I know they needed numbers for the sake of the drive, but I could have done without Jasper, Lippy, Soupy, Dish, etc.


message 32: by [deleted user] (new)

I think Jake was my favorite minor character. His story brought a lot to the overall story, showcasing how tough life truly was. There wasn't a lot of employment choices.

He wasn't a bad person, but he was certainly a weak person and allowed the circumstances to lead him. By hooking up with the bad boys Suggs, he was just trying to travel through Indian territory. Yet, not making a decision is still a decision.


message 33: by Joy, Your Obedient Servant (new) - rated it 3 stars

Joy (jammons42) | 510 comments Mod
Karen wrote: "I think Jake was my favorite minor character. His story brought a lot to the overall story, showcasing how tough life truly was. There wasn't a lot of employment choices.

He wasn't a bad person, ..."


Really? That's interesting. I would have never thought of Jake in that way. I hated Jake. It always seemed like he was just hanging around. And that Call and Gus tolerated him, because he was part of their past. And even though they thought he didn't do much then they still kept him around. He was lazy and didn't want anything out of life and a lot of the better characters suffered because their compassion for him kept him around.

Jacinta wrote: "J., I agree with a lot of what you said. I loved Clara and Deets too; Clara was my favorite.

I also had mixed feelings about the book's treatment of women, which is part of why I found the introdu..."


The introduction of Clara is when I decided I could finish the book.

Gus and Lorena's relationship was interesting. You never quite knew what it was, but maybe the point was that it was never going to be clear given how it started?

Elmira was terrible. I don't think there was a moment I liked her at all.


Diane I found it odd that Gus wanted to buried back in Lonesome Dove. All through the book people were buried where they died very quickly. I was surprised that he would burden Call with taking him all the way back to Texas after he had just made it to Montana. From a story point of view it provided a good wrap up of various loose ends - but it didn't seem realistic to me. Also, was wondering for those who saw the movie - was it a funny moment when his coffin fell in the water? It made me laugh!


message 35: by Joy, Your Obedient Servant (new) - rated it 3 stars

Joy (jammons42) | 510 comments Mod
Diane wrote: "I found it odd that Gus wanted to buried back in Lonesome Dove. All through the book people were buried where they died very quickly. I was surprised that he would burden Call with taking him all t..."

I read it as Gus knowing that Call needed a purpose, to be working toward something, so Gus felt he was leaving him with that.


Diane J. wrote: "Diane wrote: "I found it odd that Gus wanted to buried back in Lonesome Dove. All through the book people were buried where they died very quickly. I was surprised that he would burden Call with ta..."

Thanks for your thoughts J. And I guess Call was never going to think his purpose was getting closer to his son Newt... He was teaching him the business - but not developing a father/son relationship.


message 37: by Joy, Your Obedient Servant (new) - rated it 3 stars

Joy (jammons42) | 510 comments Mod
Diane wrote: "J. wrote: "Diane wrote: "I found it odd that Gus wanted to buried back in Lonesome Dove. All through the book people were buried where they died very quickly. I was surprised that he would burden C..."

I think Call spent so much time denying it in the book that by the time he was ready to admit it, it still seemed wrong to him to say something after all that time. That's how I read it, but I'm happy to hear if someone interpreted it differently. There was a lot going on in the book and i'm sure I didn't catch everything.


Jen from Quebec :0) (muppetbaby99) | 23 comments NancyJ wrote: "I'm in part 3 now, but I saw the whole show, so I'm not concerned about spoilers.

Random topics...

Jacinta mentioned Wyoming,but as I was listening, I wasn't always sure where they were, so I ne..."


RE: The film, 'Straight Story'

I watched that film for ONE reason: the main character is played by Richard Farnsworth; the same actor that played 'Matthew Cuthbert' in the CBC film version of "Anne of Green Gables" (the absolute BEST adaptation of Anne, for sure). I love that version of 'Anne' so much that I wanted to watch 'Matthew' in his Oscar-nominated film performance.

He also played the sheriff in the film version of Stephen King's 'Misery', with Kathy Bates.

I am a film nerd as much as a book lover. They are both passions. I have way too many books AND DVDs in my house!

---Jen from Quebec :0)


message 39: by NancyJ, Moderator (last edited Aug 12, 2018 03:17PM) (new) - added it

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
Jennifer Lynn wrote: .. Straight Story .."

He was really great. Sissy Spacek had a great role too.

Did you like the film? Did you see a connection to Lonesome Dove?


message 40: by Pam (new) - rated it 5 stars

Pam (bluegrasspam) I just finished the book this morning and then watched the last episode of the mini-series. I was surprised at how accurately the tv show followed the book. I did notice that the last dialogue in the tv show was from the prior hanging scene, several pages earlier. But, I actually liked it better at the end! For cinematic purposes, it really worked.

I thought the book was great! I just wished that Call would have broke the news to Newt. The scene where he left was heart-breaking. I think he could've broke character for that one scene! I also thought it was unreasonable for Gus to request his body be buried in TX. (I guess he was delirious.) He seemed more practical than that. I liked Call's line about being careful what you promise. I did find it hard to believe that Call could make it all the way back to TX by himself. But, oh well. It made for a good wrap up for the story!


message 41: by NancyJ, Moderator (last edited Aug 22, 2018 04:51PM) (new) - added it

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
Pam wrote: "I just finished the book this morning and then watched the last episode of the mini-series. I was surprised at how accurately the tv show followed the book. I did notice that the last dialogue in t..."

I saw the film ending before I read the book ending, and while I don't remember it exactly, it didn't feel so abrupt. The book ended on a sour note for me. Another death, and the last word was "whore." I was so sick of that word. I liked it better at the beginning when the author eased us into her profession by calling her other words, like "sporting woman." I suppose he did that to help us view Lorena more sympathetically. So why ruin it by ending with that word?

The book ending with Call seemed even sadder to me than the movie, especially now, knowing that the sequel probably doesn't include a reunion for Call and Newt.

On a comment someone asked how much of this was a love story. (The blurb is a little misleading imo). If anything this book was largely about UNREQUITED love.

Dish loved Lorena the whole time, but she barely noticed him. He loved her despite never having a real conversation with her. Lorena loved Jack, but then fell hard for Gus. It was gratitude, dependence, and probably real love. Jake loved Jake.
Gus always loved Clara no matter who he was with.
Clara loved Gus, but she's very smart and knew she couldn't trust or rely on him.
July loved his wife (I suppose). She was so in love with her ex she did reckless and heartless things to find him. July then loved Clara, and that was pretty hopeless.


IF this book was a romance, this is what would happen next:
*Call would acknowledge Newt and there'd be a quietly emotional moment between them. Newt would finally look really happy.
*Lorena would gradually start to notice Dish and he would eventually win her over. OR
*Dish would suddenly realize he never really knew her at all, and stop idealizing her. At the same time, he and Clara's daughter would start noticing nice things about one another.
*Lorena would learn to read and find some other purpose.
*July would somehow man up, do something impressive, and confidently grab Clara and kiss her. (Oh never mind, he's too much of a wimp for her.)


message 42: by NancyJ, Moderator (new) - added it

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
For those who both read and watched the miniseries, which Clara did you like better? It seemed to me that she was much nicer -calm and almost beatific - in the TV series. She was more outspoken and harsh in the book, and I liked her better that way. Or maybe it's just that I couldn't read her mind in the miniseries, but I knew how harshly she was judging the men in the book.


message 43: by NancyJ, Moderator (new) - added it

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
Jen from Quebec :0) wrote: "It was thanks to this group that I borrowed a copy of the book from a cousin (despite Westerns NOT being 'my thing') and I ATE IT UP! I inhaled this book! Fantastic storytelling, world-building, di..."

Jen, did you see the movie "Return to Lonesome Dove"? It seems to cover the period between the books Lonesome Dove and Streets of Loredo. Call is returning North, and Newt is running the ranch in Montana (but lands in jail).

Did anyone else see it? Or read the prequel books?


message 44: by [deleted user] (new)

I plan to continue reading the series. This is such a great story.
https://www.goodreads.com/series/49395

I borrowed the TV series Lonesome Dove from the library, but the dvd's were in tough shape and kept losing the sound. I wasn't able to watch the whole thing.


Parker | 204 comments I've seen all the movies (the ones McMurtry sanctioned, as well as the ones he didn't), and read all the books.


Cathy (cathy1015) | 54 comments I finished this today - wow! Loved the characters and the setting of Lonesome Dove and other places Gus, Lorena, and all passed through on their journeys. There were several plot turns that I did not see coming, so I was pretty much turning pages or listening to the audio book intently from start to finish. I just have to say that I cannot imagine traveling the distances that were covered all the time herding a thousand or so cattle. I also enjoyed how cleverly put together and suspenseful the passages were where characters were looking for each other across the vastness of the west (July for Elmira, Gus for Lorena, Elmira ending up at Clara's, etc.) - so real and I would guess fairly true to that time (instead of contrived coincidences as often can be the case). Kept me on the edge of my seat wondering will they find each other and what will happen if they do...so much history between all the characters. An endearing novel...


message 47: by [deleted user] (new)

Cathy, great recap. I loved all of the things you mention. It was a 5☆ read for me too. I plan to read book 2 soon.


message 48: by aPriL does feral sometimes (last edited Sep 30, 2018 08:47PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

aPriL does feral sometimes  (cheshirescratch) I finished the book today. I am still feeling these characters in my head.

Five star read for me. This is my second time with the book, but it is clear to me I was too young and stupid the first time I read this to pick up on its depths. There is so much here.

It is all about the characters for me and each of their journeys of self-discovery. Every character found out what their actual strengths and weaknesses were which sometimes did not match their vision of themselves initially, while others who in finding out what they could and could not do stubbornly refused to yield their inner self-aggrandizement. All of them had moments of disappointing discoveries about their ideas about the world, their comrades, sex, women, hopes and dreams. Their choices lead to surprising endings which sometimes did not match what they may have deserved. The process of the journey (both metaphorically and in the plot) clearly was more important than arriving at one's final destination, as are the personal tests each character faces.

Augustus is my favorite character, as he was also the first time I read this novel when it first was published. I knew an Elmira in the real world for decades. I once long ago had a man like Dish pine after me although I also never encouraged him, and he never was dangerous to me. Clara reminded me of some junior high teachers I had.

I did not find the language of the cowboys offensive or wrong because the author made it clear many of these men were unschooled men of the 1860's or so. Using a word like whore is disparaging in some circles, but in some such towns in the 1800's, many men were more like innocent 12-year-olds than politically savvy college graduates. I doubt that some of the more simple 'boys' had a clue whore could be a bad name-calling word.

I thought half of these characters were honestly simple about women. They did not run into very many women except prostitutes. Many of these cowboys vaguely remember their mothers, who I am sure did not do much to enlighten them about sex. Most of the 'men' were out in the world expected to act like men at age fifteen or so.

Clara was a shock to some of the characters because she acted with the authority of a boss. I do not think the women in towns or small communities had the freedom to express themselves, even if they had had any socialization or education which encouraged free agency.


message 49: by aPriL does feral sometimes (last edited Sep 30, 2018 09:38PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

aPriL does feral sometimes  (cheshirescratch) I doubt very much populations like the ones in the book so isolated by lack of infrastructure and without movies, radio and TV, and without a common curriculum which is taught in all public schools today, all of which serves as models for us to imitate as to fashions, behavior, gestures, mores, comedy and speech, could develop a society of cookie-cutter socially acceptable personalities like we do now or specific group identities based on haircuts and clothes (like being described as the Baby Boomer generation or Hipsters) or know what self-censorship of one's behavior or language we do today to fit in as being politically correct. Or not, depending on our anti-social tendencies...

I think people were actually more unfiltered back then, if not terribly inventive as to their thinking or being planned in stylistic presentations like today's Kardashians or office workers. 'Indians' were real and scary, there was no running water to wash up or electricity to make lives cleaner and safer, law was carried out by mob rule or often self-designated strong charismatic men, and most women in these towns were prostitutes, although some women were of the kind of rigid 'proper' Victorian people who put native Hawaiians, for example, into neck-to-floor Mother Hubbard dresses in spite of 100F humid weather. Full stop.

Parents, neighbors, employers and the church would be the primary enforcers of how to express oneself, or not, or how to think, in my opinion, in these decades. In my experience, education and urban experience has made me more of a political and philosophical thinker in the 20th-21st century. When younger and less educated, all I thought about was how my friends and peers dressed and acted, my teachers and neighbors, trying to look cool, and wondering why and what boys were like. That is the stage of development most of these cowboys appear to be stopped at. Histories I have read about cowboys do seem to affirm McMurtry's fictional version of them.

Just for fun:

US Population in 1890: 62,979,766
Population per square mile of land area: 17.8

Percent increase of population from 1880 to 1890: 25.5

Urban Places
New York City, NY 1,515,301
Chicago, IL 1,099,850
Philadelphia, PA 1,046,964
Brooklyn, NY 806,343
St. Louis, MO 451,770
Boston, MA 448,477
Baltimore, MD 434,439
San Francisco, CA 298,997
Cincinnati, OH 296,908
Cleveland, OH 261,353

Number of States: 42

My state, Washington, became a state in 1889 looooonnng after the Eastern states. As a kid (1950's/1960's) I could meet or see loggers, fishermen, miners, and other very rough types of unwashed and unshaven men all over Seattle's waterfront streets. There were in that area old hotels with 2-hour room rentals, peep shows, nude stage shows (with pianos) and tons of taverns with no windows and pool/card rooms. They are all torn down now. As a young woman (1970's), I visited a northern Idaho town and was shown where a brothel was, still operating openly, on the main Street. There were lots of loggers and what I could only call mountain men and ranchers there. Montana had people in horses riding down town streets and some huge cars with long cow horns glued on the hoods. Most restaurants had cowboy themes and ropes everywhere - in case of a loose cow? IDK.

: )


message 50: by Joy, Your Obedient Servant (new) - rated it 3 stars

Joy (jammons42) | 510 comments Mod
Moving this to the past reads folder, but the thread will remain open for discussion.


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