52 Books in 52 Weeks (2011) discussion

Books Read > Week: 4

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message 1: by Yasmeen (new)

Yasmeen (yassoma) | 123 comments Mod
Reviews for books read on Week 4.

message 2: by Alanoud (new)

Alanoud (Flighto) | 22 comments .


اسم الكتاب : حكاية حب
الكاتب: غازي القصيبي



Title: A Dirty Job
Author: Christopher Moore

"The author uses a very easy language ,
felt more like watching a movie rather than reading a book.
Basically a guy with a beta male type of personalty ended up being a merchant of death
And freaks out , obviously .
It was somewhat entertaining the same way the popcorn movies are , but reached a level when I got bored with it so I skipped a couple of chapters. "

Link to review

message 3: by Leslie (new)

Leslie (watchoutforlucy) Title: A Walk in the Woods
By: Bill Bryson
Audio book, ready by Author
This book was huge bestseller. I enjoy his gently ironic style and the way he slips interesting facts, history and trivia into his story. I've learned quite a bit from the three Bryson books I've read, and they go down quite easily.

message 4: by Najd (last edited Jan 23, 2011 06:45AM) (new)

Najd M (najdm) | 18 comments Anthem
Ayn Rand


Light read, very short, the novel was only half the book and the other half was the reproduction of the original British version.
I didn't know that, I got all excited then, bummer.

Very weird indeed.


message 5: by Afnan (new)

Afnan Amer (AAfnan) | 24 comments Bones to Ashes (Temperance Brennan, #10) by Kathy Reichs
"Again, one more average book to read.. the story would have made one good movie but as a book I think it had too many conflicts and distractions that were left unresolved for a while & everything was solved at the end of the book in a fast based way that gives the feeling that the ending is too abrupt. while other events were unnecessarily prolonged.
otherwise, the book has some good scientific informations as expected from a forensic novel, and as always the case with me with any book, I couldn't wait to reach the end of the book."


message 6: by Neefoo (new)

Neefoo | 7 comments The Alchemist

(This is actually my 3rd week book, but was busy with finals and all)

This book tells us the life of a boy, Santiago. Who believed in following his dreams no matter what. What separated him from other books I've read about people following their dreams is, he didn't have to be dying in order to enjoy and follow his dreams. This book speaks of faith, power, courage and is exotic, yet simple.. natural yet magical.. It was simply amazing!!
I also loved the way they portrayed Islam in it, and during Santiago's journey, he had understood what many had told him before when something bad or good happened, they simply said "Maktub". During his journey, he meets a gypsy, a king, Crystal merchant, an English man, an Alchemist; who teaches him all about life and what's important.

Here are some of my favorite quotes:
* "In Alchemy, It's called the Soul of the world. When you want something with all your heart, that's when your are the closest to the Soul of the world. It's always a positive force."
* "When a person really desires something, all the universe conspires to help that person to realize their dream."
* "When you possess great treasure within you, and try to tell others of them, seldom are you believed."
* "No one fails to suffer the consequences of everything under the sun."
* "There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: The fear of failure"

The alchemist also showed the boy that obstacles are always there to see how badly you want to achieve something and said when the boy was afraid of dying: "Then you'll die in the midst of trying to achieve your dream. That's a lot better than dying like millions of other people, who never knew what their dreams was.

I highly recommend people to read it!

message 7: by Maggie Wade (new)

Maggie Wade (asphaltjunkie) Piano: The Making of a Steinway Concert Grand
James Barron


This is really a very interesting book -- if you know a fair amount about the piano and the music written for it. I suspect that someone who hasn't spent much time around a piano would find this a lot drier than I did, having spent my whole life around pianos. Anyway, it was really interesting for me to learn about all the work (and there's a LOT of it) that goes into making a concert piano. This was the highlight of my week!

message 8: by Lamia (new)

Lamia Al-Qahtani (lamia-alqahtani) طبائع الاستبداد ومصارع الاستعباد
by عبد الرحمن الكواكبي



message 9: by Leslie (new)

Leslie (watchoutforlucy) Title: A Dog's Purpose
By: Cameron Bruce

Told though dog's point of view. Written at about 3rd grade level. Maybe I'd have enjoyed if I were reading to a child. I like books and I like dogs and I like books about dogs. I don't know what the hype is on this book-zzzzzzz.

message 10: by Balkees (new)

Balkees Al-Ajmi (alb6ah) | 3 comments السجينة by Malika Oufkir

I enjoyed reading this story which was a combination of joy , poor , wealth ,...etc.
I enjoyed how they describe every detail inside & outside the prison .
They lived the worst of at all but their ؤourage made them survive 20 year in prison ..

message 11: by [deleted user] (new)

I know that I've been reading the book way before the challenge but it's 1075 pages so give me credit

The Pillars of the Earth (The Pillars of the Earth, #1) by Ken Follett

4.5/5 (just because it's too long and too detailed)

It's a historical fiction that takes place in England during the 12th century in a fictional town of Kingsbridge. It's an enjoyable well written book. can't think of a way to summarize the plot without spoiling it so will leave it here.

message 12: by Ghada (last edited Jan 26, 2011 04:31AM) (new)

Ghada (charm_quark) | 21 comments Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert

Title: Madame Bovary
Author: Gustave Flaubert
Rating: 3.5/5

Madame Bovary is considered as one of the most influential novels ever written. It is even said to rank up there with Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina. So, I looked up the plot online and was disappointed to learn that it is a story about a young doctor’s wife, Emma, who is very unhappy with her marriage and displeased with her provincial life. Having consumed many romantic novels throughout her years of education and early years of womanhood, she develops a longing for fairy-tale passion and romance. She attempts to fulfill her whims and attempts to escape her reality by committing adultery and living a luxurious life beyond her -and her husband’s- means, and eventually being deeply burdened by debt.

When the book was first released, it was attacked by members of the public in France and trialed for obscenity… The case was dismissed by the court soon enough, and it became a best seller.

Emma’s story does not begin or end well. But never mind that.

The author was known to be a perfectionist, and it was easy to realize the brilliant work of this creative genius as one read through his words. The details in the novel were so vibrant and comprehensive. You did not need that much imaginative skills to be transported into the setting of each scene; just reading through the paragraphs was enough. So, it is of no surprise when I learned that this book established Flaubert as one of the founders of Realism.

The characters were also very well defined. For example, although loyal, loving and trusting, Charles Bovary was an unambitious, simple and incompetent doctor. It did not take much thinking to analyze his thoughts and actions and to understand his intentions.

Even though I got a little bored of Emma’s naivety and selfishness, I enjoyed reading this excellent piece of literature. Solely because of Flaubert’s writing style, I found it to be a memorable novel.


message 13: by Rania (new)

Rania (raniahcom) دمشق الحرائق
لـ زكريا تامر

مجموعة قصصية تلقي الضوء على مشكلة الفقر بطريقة مواربة
تصف حال الفقير و ما يرتكبه لمجابهة الجوع و الألم ...

ما أعجبني هو الطريقة المبدعة و الغريبة في سرد القصة ،نقد للمجتمع و حقائق يغلفها بالسخرية

message 14: by Ahmad (new)

Ahmad (baubaid) Strengths Finder 2.0
by Tom Rath
4/5 (so far - read review for details)

Well, am I really finished with this book? Can't say so.

For 99 Riyals you get a small book (expensive?), but the real thing you'll get is an access code to an online strength finder tool which will, in 30 minutes, inform you of your top 5 strengths. This is followed by what the author says is a PERSONALIZED report catered to your own self. This report tells you about your 5 strengths in detail and then provides ten actionable items (for each one) to help you capitalize on that strength and improve it.

The idea is that focusing on improving your strengths is more beneficial than worrying about your weaknesses.

This book is more of a reference book which lists the 30+ strengths (4 pages each) along with the action plan for each one. This is the reason why I haven't gone through it all (no need), but I've taken time to read the intros for each strength.

I have yet to read my personalized report, but I've gone through the 4 pages for each of my 5 strengths in the book and I feel like the assessment did a really good job in finding those strengths (well maybe except one).

4 stars so far. Maybe I'll read the report and give it a 5. Looks like it deserves it.

message 15: by Yara (new)

Yara | 15 comments Title: The Secret Life of Bees
Author: Sue Monk Kidd
Rating: 4/5

I enjoyed this book emmensly. I loved how delicatey everything was described, a touch of a hand, the sound of the creek, the wind, sheets going through the dryer.... it was all so emotional, so.... raw!

The feelings this girl has for her dead mother are so genuine and described so perfectly.

It all happens in South Caroline, and i read the whole book in a southern accent which really brought out the characters' southern spirit for me.

message 16: by Teresa (new)

Teresa (teresa_bowen) Stargate Atlantis: Homecoming Stargate Atlantis: Homecoming by Jo Graham

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

With all versions of Stargate now cancelled the only way to get a regular fix of one of my favourite tv shows is through tie in novels. This is one of the best I have read in a long time. The characters ring true. The story is interesting and I can hardly wait for the next instalment

View all my reviews

message 17: by Ⓛeah (new)

Ⓛeah ✿εїз✾ (goodreadscomLeah13) | 5 comments Linger
I loved this book! I still don't think it compared with Shiver. It ended on a cliff hanger so I am yearning to read the next book. It was very good but Grace's parents bugged me in this. I loved the new characters and how more people were telling the story. And now I want to make Paper cranes (read the book and you'll know why.) ^^

message 18: by Dareen (new)

Dareen | 15 comments Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman by Haruki Murakami
Book: Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman
Author: Haruki Murakami
Rating: 3/5 stars

There's something magical about the way he writes. One word to describe those 24 short stories: Surreal.

message 19: by Manal (new)

Manal (manl) | 23 comments أرني الله
توفيق الحكيم
فلسفة من صميم الحياة..وقصص ذات بُعد آخر..بعضها اضافت لي حكماً جميلة وبعضها أمتعتني فقط بفلسفتها البسيطة.

message 20: by Leslie (new)

Leslie (watchoutforlucy) Title: Half a Life
By: Darrin Strauss

Short, well told story re: Accident/Loss/Grief/Depression and learning to live forgive.

message 21: by [deleted user] (new)

حياة في الإدارة by غازي بن عبد الرحمن القصيبي غازي بن عبد الرحمن القصيبي

قررت قراءة الكتاب بعد أن نصحني الكثيرين بقراءته. كتاب رائع سواء كان في اللغة أو اسلوب الكتابة أو الموضوع، يروي سيرته الذاتيه الغنية بالأحداث و "المناصب" الحكومية انصح الجميع بقرائته، كنت عندما ابدأ بقراءته لا استطيع التوقف.

message 22: by Yasmeen (new)

Yasmeen (yassoma) | 123 comments Mod
Hardcore Zen: Punk Rock, Monster Movies, & the Truth about Reality Hardcore Zen: Punk Rock, Monster Movies, & the Truth about Reality by Brad Warner

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I bought Hardcore Zen a few months ago when I read an introduction to Buddhism. It interested me very much and I liked a few of the concepts represented. Of course, my purpose of reading on Buddhism was not to be committed to it, but to benefit from whatever it has to offer. The reason I chose a book on Zen is that it's the only school of Buddhism I knew about, and I didn't want to read a book that's spiritual in the cheesy way (since I absolutely hate those), which explains the title.

The author's style and writing in the first 50 pages or so were kind of annoying, as he kept trying to convince the readers how much of a punk he was. Maybe it was a necessary step - who knows? I didn't like it, anyway. In those same pages were a few passages that made me chuckle, or think, so it wasn't all that bad. After that bit, he started getting more into the practice of Zazen and the philosophy of Buddhism, which was informative. I generally liked the book a lot. Nevertheless, most people who are religious would not like it and would not be able to pick and choose whatever they love from this book since the author is clearly against following an authority figure (and so am I), and being in most religions meant having to have an authority figure to him. He does not bash religion nor gets preachy which is a HUGE pro in my book.

I'd recommend it to people wanting to know what Buddhism is about without wanting to read cheesy text.

View my review.

message 23: by DinaTheHyena (new)

DinaTheHyena | 13 comments Wuthering Heights


I used to think that the book was overrated, but after reading it I think it's not.
Heathcliff's character was my favorite, some of you might disagree, I think he was just driven and blinded by his past. He wanted what everyone else would want at some point of thier lives, payback. He was brave enough to admit it. Not to mention his love to Cathy which destroyed him completely.

message 24: by Sabah (last edited Jan 28, 2011 09:18AM) (new)

Sabah (sabahn) The Lion, the Witch, and the WardrobeC.S. Lewis


I dug this up from underneath heavy piles of books in my home because I thought that It will be a light and easy read that will keep me from losing track of the challenge in my finals weeks. I don't really like fairy tales. I thought that it will be nice to change a little from my usual genre of books. Although reading this book was very boring , I have to credit it for giving me a new philosophy in life, If you're happy with what you got , then don't change it just for the sake of change.

message 25: by Sabah (last edited Jan 28, 2011 10:20AM) (new)

Sabah (sabahn) The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe

C.S. Lewis


This book took longer than I thought it would take , I found it buried under the books on our bookshelves and thought I should read it since I will be busy studying for my exams and this would be a light and easy read so I can keep up with the challenge. Unfortunately it took me more than I expected it would

message 26: by Fatima (new)

Fatima  (fatimaah) أحببتكَ أكثرمما ينبغي | أثير عبدالله


مؤمنةٌ أنا، بأنّ لكلّ شخص فينا ( تجارب ) حُبّ، لكنّ في حياة كلّ منا ( حكاية حُبّ ) واحدة لا تتكرر .. "
انتهيتُ منها.
الحكاية التي لم تكن كاتبتها الوحيدة التي مرّت بها
وإنما الحكاية التي وجدتُ فيها رفيقاتٍ كُثُر، يعشنها بنفس السيناريو تقريباً
وباختلافاتٍ طفيفة جدّاً ..
لا أدري ما هو الحٌبّ الذي تتحدثونَ عنه وتستميتونَ لأجله رغم أن الطرف الآخر - لا يُغري- باستكمال رحلة الحياة معه ! ولا يُؤمَنْ جانبه !

أظنني شبه حانقة لعلّو معدلّ هذي الحكايا باسم الحُبّ !
وأظنني مُصدقّة وللأسف أن ثمة قلوب كثيرة تهوي في هذا المنزلق، ولا تجدُ من يُمسكُ بها

" كنتُ أدعو بلسان لا هج في صلاتي..طلبت من الله انتزاعك من قلبي،
سألته أن ينجيني من حُبٍّ لا طاقة لي على تحملّه..كنتُ أدعوه بجوارحي، بكل ما فيّ.. "

في نهاية أغلب الحكايا،
توجعها حقيقة أنه وبعد كل هذه السنوات
كانت هي وهو وأخرى..، وبضع نساء أخريات أيضاً !!

" أحببتكَ أكثر مما ينبغي. وأحببتني أقلّ مما أستحقّ "

message 28: by Ahmad (new)

Ahmad (baubaid) Blink
by Malcolm Gladwell

Good read. Didn't gain as much knowledge from it as expected, but still good.

message 29: by Kristina (new)

Kristina (kristinalawhead) Sea Change
Aimee Friedman

I liked this book. I remember reading her series of books (South Beach, French Kiss, and Hollywood Hills) when I was in high school and really liking them so I thought I'd really like this one too. I didn't like it as much but I also have kind of grown out of that stage too. I liked that it had a fantasy element that wasn't magic or vampires, a nice change for sure!

message 30: by Leslie (new)

Leslie (watchoutforlucy) Title:
The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America
By: Erik Larson

True crime story written w/the backdrop of the Columbian Exhibition in Chicago. Tells story of sociopath murderer operating at time of the fair. Overlapping are Architect Daniel Burnham and Landscape architect Frederick Law Olmstead thoughts and challenges on conceiving, building, and executing this project.
Reads like a well written novel.

message 31: by Rawan (new)

Rawan M | 7 comments هما by غازي بن عبد الرحمن القصيبي

Title: هما
Author: غازي القصيبي

Pages from 37 to 44 are the best <3
IF the book continued the same enjoyable & entertaining way after the 59th page it would've -absolutely- been one of my favourites.
and I truely loved the ending, this is one of the books that I'll highly recommend to my friends.

ɑƨħŵɑɡ ♥Team Magnus Damora FOREVER♥ (unheard) | 40 comments Title: The Hunger Games - Book 1
Author: Suzzane Collins
Rating: 5/5


"Brilliant story & so engaing"

My Review

Title: ونطق الصمت
Author: محمد عبد العزيز الداود
Rating: 3/5


"نظرة عميقة لما يجول بخاطر من فقدوا نعمة من نعم الله عليهم وكيفية تعاملهم بإيجابية مع محنتهم"

My Review

message 33: by Zak (new)

Zak (zc1504) | 8 comments Mark Twain The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain


I really wanted to like this book, but i found it a drag to read and became very boring. A rather difficult book to read due to the varying dialects which also made it hard for me to stay hooked.

message 34: by Kay (new)

Kay (johanik) | 19 comments Tiger's Curse by Colleen Houck.

message 35: by Tempus (new)

Tempus | 46 comments Title: The Meaning Of It All: Thoughts of a Citizen-Scientist
Author: Richard P. Feynman
Rating: 3.5/5

The book is a series of lectures given by Dr. Feynman about science, its philosophy, its relationship to politics and religion, and pseudoscience.

message 36: by Jhannas (last edited Jan 31, 2011 12:15PM) (new)

Jhannas | 5 comments Title: Dead Beat
Author: Jim Butcher
Rating: 4/5 stars

This is the seventh book of the Dresden Files and they're like magic for grown-ups, the main character actually has depth and flaws and feels like a real person, the plots are well thought out and span the whole series and not just the books. It's told from a first person perspective, a sarcastic one at that, and the humour seeps through on every page, well worth checking out.

message 37: by Rebecca (last edited Feb 01, 2011 07:12AM) (new)

Rebecca Herman (beccadeesbookshelf) Matched

I am really excited about this series. Honestly this is one of the best books I have read. I have realized that I really enjoy reading dystopian literature. There is a inner battle going on in this book that makes you wonder if it is ok to just follow the rules, because life is good, or if you should fight against what the "Officals" tell you because there could be so much more out there. I am excited for November to get here so I can read the next installment!

message 38: by Janelle (new)

Janelle (janelelaine) The Lady Matador's Hotel
By Christina Garcia

Really enjoyed this. I felt like I was reading the plots for one of those Spanish soap operas. It tells the story of 5 or 6 separate characters who are staying at the hotel right before a controversial election. It was dramatic and funny.

message 39: by Irina (new)

Irina Slobodina | 8 comments Slow Food Nation
Carlo Petrini
Slow Food Nation Why Our Food Should Be Good, Clean, And Fair by Carlo Petrini

I find the book repetitive, boring and monotonous. If you are interested in topics about sustainable agriculture and the impact of today’s food industry on our health and environment read Barbara Kingsolver or Michael Pollan instead.

message 40: by Manal (new)

Manal Saad (missice) | 9 comments Does My Head Look Big In This? by Randa Abdel-Fattah by Randa Abdel-Fattah

3/5 stars

The title of the book is what made me buy it without hesitation. I must say the first chapters were boring, I was expecting something more interesting that what I have read. The message the book delivers is good, but in my own opinion I think it could've been delivered in a better way.

There are things that I found quite interesting.. How Arab-Muslims are brought up in the Western countries, some lose their identity in order to fit in and some struggle to find their identities and some are completely clueless!

I guess finding a good example is what helps other stick to what they believe. Over all it was a not bad read.


message 41: by samar (new)

samar a (6mb2) | 12 comments سلمي
غاري القصيبي
2 / 5

didn't like it that much ..

message 42: by Johara (new)

Johara Almogbel | 71 comments I know I'm a few weeks late, but I blame exams and then traveling in the vacation with no easy internet access... *smiles sheepishly

Here's my review:

Monster Monster by A. Lee Martinez

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

My sister passed this book on to me unrecommended, so I read it not expecting much, but was pleasantly surprised at the ad-libbed style of this book. Thoroughly enjoyed it despite the somewhat weakness of the plot, and the dialogue was hilarious. My favorite part was the paper gnome, A. Lee Martinez should look into writing a series about Monster and Chester, I think I'd like reading about that...

View all my reviews

message 43: by Rakan (new)

Rakan (rakanmsd) | 50 comments The Dragons of Eden Speculations on the Evolution of Human Intelligence by Carl Sagan
The Dragons of Eden: Speculations on the Evolution of Human Intelligence
By Carl Sagan
Rating: 4.5\5

في هذا الكتاب يتحدث الرائع كارل ساغان عن العقل والوعي وعن تطورهما. 
كنت متخوفاً من الكتاب كونه قديم بعض الشيء وربما لم يواكب الاكتشافات الجديدة التي حصلت في الثلاثين سنة التي تلت اصداره، لكن تبين لي بعد قراءته انه من اجمل وأسهل الكتب التي قرأتها في التعاطي مع مسألة الوعي.

انصح به وبشدة!ـ

message 44: by Linah (new)

Linah (liiiinahhh) The Solitude of Prime Numbers by Paolo Giordano by Paolo Giordano

You know a book is good when you fly through it, when you cannot put it down and lose track of time. The novel was originally in Italian but translated pretty nicely into English. It tells the story of two young children that are different, that have had a troubled past and its effect on them as adults. I love how the author leaves a lot of room for imagination on some happenings, deliberately not telling you everything. The way the author explicitly describes the motion of the characters, their hand gestures, facial expressions I found quite intriguing. I particularly loved the ending and admire the author for not taking the easy way out. The overall inclusion of math in different parts of the book was another thing I loved.

I recommend this book for anyone that appreciates eccentric characters and an engrossing story that you cannot wait to finish.

I gave it four stars because it was so captivating.

message 45: by Alaa (new)

Alaa Albanyan (alooli) | 5 comments Never Let Me Go

Kazuo Ishiguro


I liked the way the book was narrated. It gave me a feeling that the character was speaking to me directly.

message 46: by Sarah (new)

Sarah  Q (plastic555) Perfume

Patrick Suskind


Everyone should Read it...
Wonderfully Weird


message 47: by Raya (new)

Raya Al-Raddadi التنمية : الأسئلة الكبرى
د.غازي القصيبي

ماهي التنمية؟ وماأهميتها؟ مادورها في مجتمعاتنا؟
هي أسئلة يجهل الكثير بهآ ولذا كان هدف د. القصيبي بأن يبسسط الأمور لأولئك الذي قد يجهلوآ معانيها لو قرأو من كتب المختصين..
معلومآت مهمة جدآ عن التنمية وماهي عناصرها وأسباب نجاحها وفشلهآ.. فلا المال يمهد لنجاحها ولا تبني خطط
الغرب كفيلة بذلك..

message 48: by Nawal (new)

Nawal Alotaibi | 9 comments قوة التفكير على مستوى أكبر


كتاب صغير وجميل

اقتباسات من الكتاب:

80 % من النجاح في الظهور

الناس هم أكثر اسهمك قيمة

لا تشغل بالك كثيرا بشخص لم يصبح اليوم احكم مما كان بالامس

الحياه تشبه التاكسي فالعداد يستمر في العمل سواء اكنت تتحرك ام تقف في مكانك فقط

من لا يفعل اكثر مما يؤجر عليه لا يكسب اكثرر مما يعمله


message 49: by Nouf (new)

Nouf (noufsabaalola) | 16 comments Heart of Darkness and Other Tales (Oxford World's Classics) by Joseph Conrad
Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
2 out of 5

Well, this book was a toughie. There were a lot of things happening and they were major distractions I couldn't focus on one single page. The book was fine but it deserves another read to enjoy it even though it's a bit difficult to keep up with the story. The style of writing was in the frame narrative which has a story within a story and it's sometimes hard to follow. The book has a beautiful concept that crystalizes, if I could use this word, at the end. The ending was my favorite part, where Marlow, the main character, returns to the civilizations after spending time in such a cruel wild world as the Congo river. I advise people to read it only if they have the time and the energy needed to focus on reading such a complicated book. I gave two stars because I wasn't able to enjoy it, it's not the book, it's the stuff that was going on while I was reading it.

message 50: by Loki (new)

Loki (idreamofloki) | 16 comments Hi =9)

Denial: A Memoir of Terror

by: Jessica Stern


I really liked this book, I felt she shared her thoughts and feelings every step she took even though it became hard for her many times through the book to deal with her emotions and relive those moments.

Laylah =0)

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