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Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter-Day Saints (Mormon)

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  1. 8.8 hrs • 3/1/2016 • Unabridged

    Days after Alex Cooper told her parents that she was gay, they drove Alex from their home in Southern California to Utah, where they signed over guardianship to fellow Mormons who promised to save Alex from her homosexuality. For eight harrowing months, Alex was held captive in an unlicensed “residential treatment program,” modeled on the many “therapeutic” boot camps scattered across Utah. Alex was physically and verbally abused, and forced to stand facing a wall for up to eighteen hours a day wearing a heavy backpack full of rocks. “God’s plan does not apply to gay people,” her captors told her, using faith to punish and terrorize her. With the help of a dedicated legal team in Salt Lake City, Alex would eventually escape and make legal history in Utah by winning the right to live under the law’s protection as an openly gay teenager. Saving Alex is a horrific yet uplifting story of identity, faith, courage, acceptance, and freedom that reveals what happens when religion goes too far and how a group of dedicated Americans and one young woman fought for her rights, including finding the strength and courage to be herself, and how her story has inspired countless others along the way.

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    Saving Alex

    8.8 hrs • 3/1/16 • Unabridged
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    9.1 hrs • 1/5/2016 • Unabridged

    A riveting, deeply-affecting true story of one girl’s coming-of-age in a polygamist cult. Ruth Wariner was the thirty-ninth of her father’s forty-two children. Growing up on a farm in rural Mexico, where authorities turned a blind eye to the practices of her community, Ruth lives in a ramshackle house without indoor plumbing or electricity. At church, preachers teach that God will punish the wicked by destroying the world and that women can only ascend to Heaven by entering into polygamous marriages and giving birth to as many children as possible. After Ruth’s father—the man who had been the founding prophet of the colony—is brutally murdered by his brother in a bid for church power, her mother remarries, becoming the second wife of another faithful congregant. In need of government assistance and supplemental income, Ruth and her siblings are carted back and forth between Mexico and the United States, where her mother collects welfare and her stepfather works a variety of odd jobs. Ruth comes to love the time she spends in the States, realizing that perhaps the community into which she was born is not the right one for her. As Ruth begins to doubt her family’s beliefs and question her mother’s choices, she struggles to balance her fierce love for her siblings with her determination to forge a better life for herself. Recounted from the innocent and hopeful perspective of a child, The Sound of Gravel is the remarkable true story of a girl fighting for peace and love. This is an intimate, gripping tale of triumph, courage, and resilience.

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    The Sound of Gravel

    9.1 hrs • 1/5/16 • Unabridged
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  3. 8.2 hrs • 10/21/2014 • Unabridged

    Is the Book of Mormon the Great American Novel? Decades before Melville and Twain composed their great works, a farmhand and child seer named Joseph Smith unearthed a long-buried book from a haunted hill in western New York State that told of an epic history of ancient America, a story about a family that fled biblical Jerusalem and took a boat to the New World. Using his prophetic gift, Joseph translated the mysterious book into English and published it under the title the Book of Mormon. The book caused an immediate sensation, sparking anger and violence, boycotts and jealousy, curiosity and wonder, and launched Joseph on a wild, decades-long adventure across the American West. Today the Book of Mormon, one of the most widely circulating works of American literature, continues to cause controversy—which is why most of us know very little about the story it tells. Avi Steinberg wants to change that. A fascinated nonbeliever, Steinberg spent a year and a half on a personal quest, traveling the path laid out by Joseph’s epic. Starting in Jerusalem, where the Book of Mormon opens with a bloody murder, Steinberg continued to the ruined Mayan cities of Central America—the setting for most of the the Book of Mormon’s ancient story—where he gallivanted with a boisterous bus tour of believers exploring Mayan archaeological sites for evidence. From there the journey took him to upstate New York, where he participated in the true Book of Mormon musical, the annual Hill Cumorah Pageant. And finally Steinberg arrived at the center of the American continent, Jackson County, Missouri, the spot Smith identified as none other than the site of the Garden of Eden. Threaded through this quirky travelogue is an argument for taking the Book of Mormon seriously as a work of American imagination. Literate and funny, personal and provocative, the genre-bending The Lost Book of Mormon boldly explores our deeply human impulse to write bibles and discovers the abiding power of story.

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    The Lost Book of Mormon

    8.2 hrs • 10/21/14 • Unabridged
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    14.1 hrs • 9/3/2013 • Unabridged

    Rebecca Musser grew up in fear, concealing her family’s polygamous lifestyle from the outside world. Covered head-to-toe in strict, modest clothing, she received a rigorous education at Alta Academy, the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints’ school headed by Warren Jeffs. Always seeking to be an obedient Priesthood girl, in her teens she became the nineteenth wife of her people’s prophet: eighty-five-year-old Rulon Jeffs, Warren’s father. Finally sickened by the abuse she suffered and saw around her, she pulled off a daring escape and sought to build a new life and family.  The church, however, had a way of pulling her back in, and by 2007, Rebecca had no choice but to take the witness stand against the new prophet of the FLDS in order to protect her little sisters and other young girls from being forced to marry at shockingly young ages. The following year, Rebecca and the rest of the world watched as a team of Texas Rangers raided the Yearning for Zion Ranch, a stronghold of the FLDS. Rebecca’s subsequent testimony would reveal the horrific secrets taking place behind closed doors of the temple, sending their leaders to prison for years, and Warren Jeffs for life. The Witness Wore Red is a gripping account of one woman’s struggle to escape the perverse embrace of religious fanaticism and sexual slavery, and a courageous story of hope and transformation.

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    The Witness Wore Red

    By Rebecca Musser, with M. Bridget Cook
    14.1 hrs • 9/3/13 • Unabridged
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  5. 10.6 hrs • 8/20/2013 • Unabridged

    When Nicole Hardy’s eye-opening “Modern Love” column appeared in the New York Times, the response from readers was overwhelming. Hardy’s essay, which exposed the conflict between being true to herself as a woman and remaining true to her Mormon faith, struck a chord with women coast-to-coast. Now in her funny, intimate, and thoughtful memoir, she explores how she came, at the age of thirty-five, to a crossroads regarding her faith and her identity. As a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Nicole had held absolute conviction in her Mormon faith during her childhood and throughout her twenties. But as she aged out of the church’s “singles ward” and entered her thirties, she struggled to merge the life she envisioned for herself with the one the church prescribed, wherein all women are called to be mothers and the role of homemaker is the emphatic ideal. Confessions of a Latter-day Virgin chronicles the extraordinary lengths Nicole went to in an attempt to reconcile her human needs with her spiritual life—flying across the country for dates with LDS men, taking up salsa dancing as a source for physical contact, even moving to Grand Cayman, where the ocean and scuba diving provided some solace. But neither secular pursuits nor LDS guidance could help Nicole prepare for the dilemma she would eventually face: a crisis of faith that caused her to question everything she’d grown up believing. In the tradition of the memoirs Devotion and Mennonite in a Little Black Dress, Confessions of a Latter-day Virgin is a mesmerizing and wholly relatable account of one woman’s hard-won mission to find love, acceptance, and happiness on her own terms.

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    Confessions of a Latter-Day Virgin

    10.6 hrs • 8/20/13 • Unabridged
  6. 6.7 hrs • 9/17/2012 • Unabridged

    Though the Constitution guarantees the free exercise of religion, it does not specify what qualifies as a religion. From its founding in the 1830s, Mormonism, a homegrown American faith, has drawn thousands of converts but far more critics. In A Peculiar People, J. Spencer Fluhman offers a comprehensive history of anti-Mormon thought and the associated passionate debates about religious authenticity in nineteenth-century America. He argues that understanding anti-Mormonism provides critical insight into the American psyche because Mormonism became a potent symbol around which ideas about religion and the state took shape. Fluhman documents how Mormonism was defamed, with attacks often aimed at polygamy, and shows how the new faith supplied a social enemy for a public agitated by the popular press and wracked with social and economic instability. Taking the story to the turn of the century, Fluhman demonstrates how Mormonism’s own transformations, the result of both choice and outside force, sapped the strength of the worst anti-Mormon vitriol, triggering the acceptance of Utah into the Union in 1896 and also paving the way for the dramatic, yet still grudging, acceptance of Mormonism as an American religion.

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    A Peculiar People by J. Spencer Fluhman

    A Peculiar People

    6.7 hrs • 9/17/12 • Unabridged
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  7. 7.6 hrs • 7/3/2012 • Unabridged

    Mormons and Mormonism are moving into the spotlight in pop culture, politics, sports, and entertainment via presidential candidates like Mitt Romney and Jon Huntsman, media personality Glenn Beck, mega-bestselling Twilight author Stephanie Meyer, and The Book of Mormon, the hottest show on Broadway. Mormonism has now emerged as one of the fastest-growing religions and a high-impact mainstream influence. Stephen Mansfield, an acclaimed New York Times bestselling author, writes this important story at a pivotal moment in American history. The Mormonizing of America is critical to understanding our times, our culture—and our future as a country. Backed by up-to-date research and personal anecdotes, Mansfield examines the influence of the LDS church—past, present, and future. He debunks common myths, expounds on the Church’s beliefs, and unveils many of the mysteries surrounding this influential religion and its loyal members.

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    The Mormonizing of America

    7.6 hrs • 7/3/12 • Unabridged
    Also: Digital Rental
  8. 9.5 hrs • 4/3/2012 • Unabridged

    Go on an unforgettable journey, with a woman who has unimaginable strength. Stephanie Nielson began sharing her life in 2005 on nieniedialogues.com, drawing readers in with her warmth and candor. She quickly attracted a loyal following that was captivated by the upbeat mother happily raising her young children, madly in love with her husband, Christian (Mr. Nielson to her readers), and filled with gratitude for her blessed life. Everything changed in an instant on a sunny day in August 2008, when Stephanie and Christian were in a horrific plane crash. Christian was burned over 40 percent of his body, and Stephanie was on the brink of death, with burns over 80 percent of her body. She would remain in a coma for four months. In the aftermath of this harrowing tragedy, Stephanie maintained a stunning sense of humor, optimism, and resilience. She has since shared this strength of spirit with others through her blog, in magazine features, and on The Oprah Winfrey Show. In this moving memoir, Stephanie tells the full, extraordinary story of her unlikely recovery and the incredible love behind it—from a riveting account of the crash to all that followed in its wake. With vivid detail, Stephanie recounts her emotional and physical journey, from her first painful days after awakening from the coma to the first time she saw her face in the mirror, the first kiss she shared with Christian after the accident, and the first time she talked to her children after their long separation. She also reflects back on life before the accident, to her happy childhood as one of nine siblings, her close-knit community and strong Mormon faith, and her fairy-tale love story, all of which became her foundation of strength as she rebuilt her life. What emerges from the wreckage of a tragic accident is a unique perspective on joy, beauty, and overcoming adversity that is as gripping as it is inspirational. Heaven Is Here is a poignant reminder of how faith and family, love and community can bolster us, sustain us, and—quite literally, in some cases—save us.

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    Heaven Is Here

    9.5 hrs • 4/3/12 • Unabridged
  9. 11.5 hrs • 1/24/2012 • Unabridged

    With Mormonism on the verge of an unprecedented cultural and political breakthrough, an eminent scholar of American evangelicalism explores the history and reflects on the future of this native-born American faith and its connection to the life of the nation. In 1830, a young seer and sometime treasure hunter named Joseph Smith began organizing adherents into a new religious community that would come to be called the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (and known informally as the Mormons). One of the nascent faith’s early initiates was a twenty-three-year-old Ohio farmer named Parley Pratt, the distant grandfather of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney. In The Mormon People,religious historian Matthew Bowman peels back the curtain on more than 180 years of Mormon history and doctrine. He recounts the church’s origin and development, explains how Mormonism came to be one of the fastest-growing religions in the world by the turn of twenty-first-century, and ably sets the scene for a 2012 presidential election that has the potential to mark a major turning point in the way this “all-American” faith is perceived by the wider American public—and internationally. Mormonism started as a radical movement, with a profoundly transformative vision of American society that was rooted in a form of Christian socialism. Over the ensuing centuries, Bowman demonstrates, that vision has evolved—and with it the esteem in which Mormons have been held in the eyes of their countrymen. Admired on the one hand as hardworking paragons of family values, Mormons have also been derided as oddballs and persecuted as polygamists, heretics, and zealots clad in “magic underwear.” Even today, the place of Mormonism in public life continues to generate heated debate on both sides of the political divide. Polls show widespread unease at the prospect of a Mormon president. Yet the faith has never been more popular. Today there are about 14 million Mormons in the world, fewer than half of whom live inside the United States. It is a church with a powerful sense of its own identity and an uneasy sense of its relationship with the main line of American culture.  Mormons will surely play an even greater role in American civic life in the years ahead. In such a time, The Mormon People comes as a vital addition to the corpus of American religious history—a frank and fair-minded demystification of a faith that remains a mystery for many.

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    The Mormon People

    11.5 hrs • 1/24/12 • Unabridged
  10. 12.9 hrs • 9/27/2011 • Unabridged

    Despite considerable press coverage and a lengthy trial, the full story of the Fundamentalist Church of Latter Day Saints has remained largely untold. Only one man can reveal the whole, astounding truth: Sam Brower, the private investigator who devoted years of his life to breaking open the secret practices of the FLDS and bringing Warren Jeffs and his inner circle to justice. In Prophet’s Prey, Brower implicates Jeff in his own words, bringing to light the contents of Jeffs’s personal priesthood journal, discovered in a hidden underground vault, and revealing to readers the shocking inside world of FLDS members, whose trust he earned and who showed him the staggering truth of their lives.Prophet’s Prey offers the gripping, behind-the-scenes account of a bizarre world from the only man who knows the full story.

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    Prophet’s Prey

    Foreword by Jon Krakauer
    12.9 hrs • 9/27/11 • Unabridged
  11. 2.4 hrs • 6/7/2011 • Unabridged

    Mormons, or members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, form a growing population in both numbers and influence. Yet few people have more than a passing knowledge of the document that defines and drives this important movement—the Book of Mormon. A former Mormon and an adult convert to Christianity, author Ross Anderson provides a clear summary of the Book of Mormon including its history, teachings, and unique features. Stories from the author and other ex-Mormons illustrate the use of Mormon scripture in the Latter-day Saint church. Anderson gives special attention to how the Book of Mormon relates to Christian beliefs about God, Jesus, and the Bible. With discussion questions to facilitate group use and a focus on providing an accurate portrayal of Mormons beliefs, Understanding the Book of Mormon is an indispensable guide for anyone wishing to become more familiar with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and its most formative scripture.

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    Understanding the Book of Mormon

    2.4 hrs • 6/7/11 • Unabridged
  12. 9.9 hrs • 5/4/2010 • Unabridged

    In 2003, Carolyn Jessop, 35, a lifelong member of the extremist Mormon sect the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS), gathered up her eight children, including her profoundly disabled four-year-old son, and escaped in the middle of the night to freedom. Jessop detailed the story of her harrowing flight and the shocking conditions that sparked it in her 2007 memoir, Escape. Reveling in her newfound identity as a bestselling author, a devoted mom, and a loving companion to the wonderful man in her life, Jessop thought she had put her past firmly behind her.  Then, on April 3, 2008, it came roaring back in full view of millions of television viewers across America. On that date, the state of Texas, acting on a tip from a young girl who’d called a hotline alleging abuse, staged a surprise raid on the Yearning for Zion Ranch, a sprawling, 1700-acre compound near Eldorado, Texas, to which the jailed  FLDS  “prophet” Warren Jeffs had relocated his sect’s most “worthy” members three years earlier. The ranch was being run by Merril Jessop, Carolyn’s ex-husband and one of the cult’s most powerful leaders. As a mesmerized nation watched the crisis unfold, Jessop once more was drawn into the fray, this time as an expert called upon to help authorities understand the customs and beliefs of the extremist religious sect with which they were dealing.   In Triumph, Jessop tells the real, and even more harrowing, story behind the raid and sets the public straight on much of the damaging misinformation that flooded the media in its aftermath. She recounts the setbacks (the tragic decision of the Supreme Court of Texas to allow the children in state custody to return to their parents) as well as the successes (the fact that evidence seized in the raid is the basis for the string of criminal trials of FLDS leaders that began in October 2009 and will continue throughout 2010), all while weaving in details of her own life since the publication of her first book. These include her budding role as a social critic and her struggle to make peace with her eldest daughter’s heartbreaking decision to return to the cult.  In the book’s second half, Jessop shares with readers the sources of the strength that allowed her not only to survive and eventually break free of FLDS mind control, but also to flourish in her new life. The tools of her transformation range from powerful female role models (grandmothers on both sides) to Curves fitness clubs (a secret indulgence that put her in touch with her body) to her college education (rare among FLDS women). With her characteristic honesty and steadfast sense of justice, Jessop, a trained educator who taught elementary school for seven years, shares her strong opinions on such controversial topics as homeschooling and the need for the court system to hold “deadbeat dads” accountable. (Among Jessop’s recent victories is a court decision that ordered her ex-husband to pay years of back child support.) An extraordinary woman who has overcome countless challenges and tragedies in her life, Jessop shows us in this book how, in spite of everything, she has triumphed—and how you can, too, no matter what adversity you face.

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    9.9 hrs • 5/4/10 • Unabridged
  13. 14.9 hrs • 9/1/2009 • Abridged

    In the first edition of The Mormon Mirage, Latayne C. Scott shared her remarkable journey out of Mormonism as she uncovered shocking inaccuracies, inconsistencies, and contradictions in the faith she had loved and lived. Thirty years later, Mormonism and Mormon scholarship have evolved with the times. In this third, revised and updated edition of her well-known book, Scott keeps pace with changes and advances in Mormonism, and reveals formidable new challenges to its claims and teachings. The Mormon Mirage provides fascinating, carefully documented insights into: – DNA research’s withering implications for the Book of Mormon– the impact of new “revelations” on Latter-day Saint (LDS) race relations– new findings about Mormon history– increasing publicity about LDS splinter groups, particularly polygamous ones– recent disavowals of long-held doctrines by church leadership– the rise of Mormon apologetics on the Internet More than a riveting, insider’s scrutiny of the Mormon faith, this book is a testimony to the trustworthiness of scripture and the grace of Jesus Christ.

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    The Mormon Mirage

    14.9 hrs • 9/1/09 • Abridged
  14. 8.5 hrs • 5/19/2009 • Unabridged

    In the polygamous Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (FLDS), girls can become valuable property as plural wives, but boys are expendable, even a liability. In this powerful and heartbreaking account, former FLDS member Brent Jeffs reveals both the terror and the love he experienced growing up on his prophet’s compound—and the harsh exile existence that so many boys face once they have been expelled by the sect.  Brent Jeffs is the nephew of Warren Jeffs, the imprisoned leader of the FLDS. The son of a prominent family in the church, Brent could have grown up to have multiple wives of his own and significant power in the 10,000-strong community. But he knew that behind the group’s pious public image—women in chaste dresses carrying babies on their hips—lay a much darker reality. So he walked away, and was the first to file a sexual-abuse lawsuit against his uncle. Now Brent shares his courageous story and that of many other young men who have become “lost boys” when they leave the FLDS, either by choice or by expulsion.Brent experienced firsthand the absolute power that church leaders wield—the kind of power that corrupts and perverts those who will do anything to maintain it. Once young men no longer belong to the church, they are cast out into a world for which they are utterly unprepared. More often than not, they succumb to the temptations of alcohol and other drugs. Tragically, Brent lost two of his brothers in this struggle, one to suicide, the other to overdose. In this book he shows that lost boys can triumph and that abuse and trauma can be overcome, and he hopes that readers will be inspired to help former FLDS members find their way in the world.

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    Lost Boy

    8.5 hrs • 5/19/09 • Unabridged
  15. 7.5 hrs • 10/29/2008 • Unabridged

    The shocking news of polygamous cults has sparked a national dialogue on religious sects. Splintered from and repudiated by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, these secretive families exist in an insular world far removed from reality. Yet for Brian Mackert, life inside this world was all too real. As a son in a family of one father, four mothers, and thirty-one children, Brian experienced firsthand the devastating reality of the polygamous lifestyle: a reality that leaves thousands of children feeling hopeless and struggling to belong. Now Brian shares his remarkable journey from a broken life to a healed soul.

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    7.5 hrs • 10/29/08 • Unabridged
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  16. 4.9 hrs • 10/16/2007 • Abridged

    The dramatic first-person account of life inside an ultra-fundamentalist American religious sect, and one woman’s courageous flight to freedom with her eight children.When she was eighteen years old, Carolyn Jessop was coerced into an arranged marriage with a total stranger: a man thirty-two years her senior. Merril Jessop already had three wives. But arranged plural marriages were an integral part of Carolyn’s heritage: She was born into and raised in the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS), the radical offshoot of the Mormon Church that had settled in small communities along the Arizona-Utah border. Over the next fifteen years, Carolyn had eight children and withstood her husband’s psychological abuse and the watchful eyes of his other wives who were locked in a constant battle for supremacy.Carolyn’s every move was dictated by her husband’s whims. He decided where she lived and how her children would be treated. He controlled the money she earned as a school teacher. He chose when they had sex; Carolyn could only refuse—at her peril. For in the FLDS, a wife’s compliance with her husband determined how much status both she and her children held in the family. Carolyn was miserable for years and wanted out, but she knew that if she tried to leave and got caught, her children would be taken away from her. No woman in the country had ever escaped from the FLDS and managed to get her children out, too. But in 2003, Carolyn chose freedom over fear and fled her home with her eight children. She had $20 to her name.Escape exposes a world tantamount to a prison camp, created by religious fanatics who, in the name of God, deprive their followers the right to make choices, force women to be totally subservient to men, and brainwash children in church-run schools. Against this background, Carolyn Jessop’s flight takes on an extraordinary, inspiring power. Not only did she manage a daring escape from a brutal environment, she became the first woman ever granted full custody of her children in a contested suit involving the FLDS. And in 2006, her reports to the Utah attorney general on church abuses formed a crucial part of the case that led to the arrest of their notorious leader, Warren Jeffs.

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    4.9 hrs • 10/16/07 • Abridged
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