Top 5 Wednesday : Characters You’d Invite to Your NYE Party

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Top 5 Wednesday was created by Lainey at gingerreadslainey on YouTube. And this week’s topic is Characters You’d Invite to Your New Year’s Eve Party. This is a super fun topic and one I had quite the bit of trouble narrowing down to five. But all in all I think I really do enjoy the people I’d want to spend New Year’s Eve with me. 

1. Fred & George Weasley from Harry Potter
Known for all their mischief and constantly looking for fun, I think this dynamic duo would be a great way to end the year off with a bang.

2. Kenzie from Shatter Me
Oh my goodness, I think Kenzie would be such a snarky and awesome person to ring in the new year with.

3. Scarlet from The Lunar Chronicles 
I feel like my whole party is just going to be a bunch of snarky, trouble seeking miscreants but…I kind of don’t care. I love Scarlet and she’s someone I’d love to hang out with if I got the chance.

4. Nina and Jesper from Six of Crows 
Do I even need to explain this? They seem to be the only two characters in that duology who actually wanted to and enjoyed having fun.

5. Aelin Galathynius from Throne of Glass series
She seems like a bad ass bitch who knows when and how to have a good time.

And that’s all I got for this week! Let me know who you’d like to ring in the new year with and if you think my list is sufficient enough.

Review : Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo

22299763Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo
Published : September 27, 2016

Kaz Brekker and his crew have just pulled off a heist so daring even they didn’t think they’d survive. But instead of divvying up a fat reward, they’re right back to fighting for their lives. Double-crossed and left crippled by the kidnapping of a valuable team member, the crew is low on resources, allies, and hope. As powerful forces from around the world descend on Ketterdam to root out the secrets of the dangerous drug known as jurda parem, old rivals and new enemies emerge to challenge Kaz’s cunning and test the team’s fragile loyalties. A war will be waged on the city’s dark and twisting streets―a battle for revenge and redemption that will decide the fate of magic in the Grisha world.

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If you’d like to read my review about Six of Crows you could find it here (just so you know how I felt about it).

I’d like to preface this review with THERE WILL BE SPOILERS ALL THROUGH OUT THIS REVIEW… so be warned…let us begin
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Mind Blowing is honestly the only thing that can come into the shambles of my little brain as I think of this absolutely stunning book. Crooked Kingdom has been one of my most anticipated reads of the year and it did not fail me one bit. I was so happy to be in the universe again and so enamored by all the characters. I kind of don’t understand at all how someone can write such a diverse group of people and have me love every single person in that group so damn much (i’m a very hard woman to please). So, Leigh Bardugo, I commend you. You’ve written a book where I love all of them Kaz, Inej, Nina, Matthias, Jesper and Wylan I cannot get enough of them and I’m actually pretty upset that there are no other books. I’m honestly sobbing on the inside due to this.

I think my favorite thing about this book was the character growth and the development of them. This book made me fall in love with them even more. I’d have to say that Wylan and Matthias get the award for most growth. But all in all, I think all six of my babies grew and went through such development and in some way I feel like Bardugo put SUCH development and thought into all these characters that they grew more than some characters would in other series. Which makes me feel like I should break down the characters and how I felt about them…So I WILL!

Kaz & Inej 
giphy“I would come for you,” he said, and when he saw the wary look she shot him, he said it again. “I would come for you. And if I couldn’t walk, I’d crawl to you, and no matter how broken we were, we’d fight our way out together—knives drawn, pistols blazing. Because that’s what we do. We never stop fighting.”

I don’t think I’ve ever felt such sexual tension between anyone in-person or fictional ever in my life. And oh boy, was it glorious. I’ve been rooting for Kaz and Inej since Six of Crows and I had a feeling that Bardugo wouldn’t go all the way with the smut but, well…it’s perfect. I love that they never got into the smuttiness and I really enjoy their dyanmic.

When Van Eck is about to smash Inej’s legs and she breaks and says she’s worth nothing to Kaz without her legs. It completely broke me.

But I think the above quote describes the two of them pretty damn well. They’re always there for each other and will always save the other one, no matter what. I absolutely love their dynamic.

I love Kaz’s all knowing demeanor and the fact that he can actually be 18 steps ahead of people and not let you know his grand scheme and I loved watching it all unfold. His ruthlessness and his constant mind games (like making Pekka Rollin’s believe that Kaz killed his kid)

As for Inej, she’s the perfect counterpart to Kaz. Elegant and composed. She’s such a strong woman and the care and love she has for the crew and her family and the fire inside her to make sure no person goes treated poorly. Ugh! Praise Inej! Her perseverance is amazing and I loved her Suli proverbs and the way she handled everything with such grace.

Jesper & Wylan
giphy-1Jesper felt the pounding of his heart—or was it Wylan’s?—like a stampede in his chest, and the only thought in his head was a happy, startled, Oh.

Slowly, inevitably, they broke apart. “Wylan,” Jesper said, looking into the wide blue sky of his eyes, “I really hope we don’t die.”

Dear lord these two. I cannot even begin to explain my love for these two since Six of Crows. I never really much liked Wylan through Six of Crows but Oh my god in this book my heart just melted for this little munchkin of a man. I couldn’t believe how amazing of a back story Wylan had. He became such an in-depth and dynamic character.  I loved how by the end of the book he overcame his struggle of illiteracy and didn’t let that become him. I sobbed when we found out about Wylan’s mother, I never thought that would be an actual thing and I love LOVE LOVE how Kaz mentors him though not letting his illiteracy hold him back. I thought that was a great side of Kaz to show as well as a great point to make because Wylan is really smart and has a lot of potential.

And Oh, my baby Jes. My heart swelled at his re-uniting with his father and learning of his mother. I adored his quick and witty come-backs and my god he’s perfect for Wylan. My absolute favorite sharp shooter. Jes is someone I most definitely connect with based on his personality and his responses. I feel as though Jesper was a bit more stagnant compared to everyone else in regards to development but that could just be me.

Nina & Matthias
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 “They were twin souls, soldiers destined to fight for different sides, to find each other and lose each other too quickly. She would not keep him here. Not like this.”

“Nina screamed , a howl that tore from the black space where her heart had beat only moments before. She searched for his pulse, for the light and force that had been Matthias.”

“Farvell,” she said in Fjerdan. “May Djel watch over you until I can once more.”

Not sure if you can tell from this, but…Nina and Mathias are my favorite. I loved them from the beginning and I loved Nina more than Mathias but I came around to him and dear god this was so much perfection and then it all got TORN AWAY FROM ME. I’m very upset with Bardugo about this. I legitimately cried in bed for hours when I read about Mathias leaving Nina. I literally could not handle it. The way it was written and the pain she went through and reading her emotions and just the way she expressed herself with the loss. I couldn’t do it.

But beyond their amazing love, Nina was stunning, witty, pure strength when she needed to be and it was absolutely amazing. I have loved Nina Zenek from the beginning and the fact that she broke down the brick wall that was Matthias Helvar…was perfect. Side note : Kudos to the grisha trilogy peeps cameo’s! But I think Nina was probably one of my most favorite perspectives to read from because she was mostly light, clever and would joke more than others.

Matthias Helvar was swoon-worthy to me.  I loved that he was the enemy gone “good”.  I absolutely love Matthias. I love how he’s come to love the dregs and love the gang, and how undying and burning his love for Nina is and how he’d do anything for her. How he cared for her during her Parem withdrawal. And I just feel like the fact that he was taken away ISN’T FAIR. HE JUST WANTED TO KISS NINA IN A SNOWY WOOD AFTER HAVING DINNER WITH HER FAMILY THREE TIMES AND THEN GO ON A WALK WITH HER. *sobs* I’m sorry but I’m still not over the perfection of Matthias Helvar.

Plot and Story Line
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I was completely enamored by this book. I didn’t put it down. I savored it, I devoured it, I fell completely in love with it. Although, I hate that it’s only a duology, I have to say that this sequel was amazingly thought through, well written and tied up everything in such an amazing way. I don’t think I could’ve ever seen this ending in such a perfect way (with the exception of losing Matthias). I can’t get enough of Leigh Bardugo’s writing and I really wish I could get more stories/books written in the Grisha world as well as seeing the crew again.  I just want to say that this was one of my most anticipated reads of the year and by God, did this book give it justice to be one of my top 2016 reads.

No Mourners. No Funerals.

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Review : Passenger by Alexandra Bracken

20983362Passenger by Alexandra Bracken
Published: January 5, 2016

Passage, n.
i. A brief section of music composed of a series of notes and flourishes.
ii. A journey by water; a voyage.
iii. The transition from one place to another, across space and time.

In one devastating night, violin prodigy Etta Spencer loses everything she knows and loves. Thrust into an unfamiliar world by a stranger with a dangerous agenda, Etta is certain of only one thing: she has traveled not just miles but years from home. And she’s inherited a legacy she knows nothing about from a family whose existence she’s never heard of. Until now.

Nicholas Carter is content with his life at sea, free from the Ironwoods—a powerful family in the colonies—and the servitude he’s known at their hands. But with the arrival of an unusual passenger on his ship comes the insistent pull of the past that he can’t escape and the family that won’t let him go so easily. Now the Ironwoods are searching for a stolen object of untold value, one they believe only Etta, Nicholas’ passenger, can find. In order to protect her, he must ensure she brings it back to them—whether she wants to or not.

Together, Etta and Nicholas embark on a perilous journey across centuries and continents, piecing together clues left behind by the traveler who will do anything to keep the object out of the Ironwoods’ grasp. But as they get closer to the truth of their search, and the deadly game the Ironwoods are playing, treacherous forces threaten to separate Etta not only from Nicholas but from her path home… forever.


Where to begin, where to begin? Passenger was very underwhelming for me. I get very excited with pirates and then throw time travel into the mix. How could you go wrong!? Well…with a really annoying main character and some insta-love. I’m torn between wanting to continue this series or if I just want to give up. I hate giving up.

The premise of the book was interesting. A girl hidden from her true time traveling powers and she finally unleashes them to go on a hunt for the one thing her nemesis is looking for. HOW COULD YOU POSSIBLY GO WRONG?! I feel like it’s almost a sin that this book went the way it did.

Etta really frustrated me, it wasn’t until towards the last half of the book where she got tolerable for me. I was much more interested in Nicholas. I really wish I got more of him and am completely debating picking up Wayfarer in hopes of getting more Nicholas backstory and what not. But Etta was too up tight for the most part and my god…the instalove was…it was really annoying. I don’t think I can forgive an insta-love like that. It was almost forced.

The pace was okay, it was fast enough that it kept me interested to keep going till the end, but in all honesty, I just really wanted more pirates, more time travel, and more all around bad ass-ery with a nice touch of romance. I have to say though I’m REALLY impressed by Bracken’s writing and seriously considering picking up The Darkest Minds.

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Taylor & Steph’s Top 5 Summer Reads!

Happy Summer  and Happy  4th of July (for those of you in the U.S.) everyone! As we all know the nice weather is out and our love for books is ever-blooming! We thought it’d be a great time to give you guys a combo post of our top five summer reads. Books we love to bring along with us on the road, on vacation, or just relaxing by the beach or wherever for the summertime. Hopefully some of you will be inclined to pick up these books on these lists sometime this summer…enjoy!


Taylor’s Picks:
5. Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour by Morgan Matson 

A super cute road trip book with great writing and lots of heart. I loved the character development and I would definitely recommend this one.

4. Look Both Ways by Alison Cherry
The plot was amazing and so different from any book I’ve read before.
I loved the setting of a summer theater camp and I really liked seeing how all the characters were very different from each other but they all had one thing in common, they loved theater.

3. To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han
I was so emotionally invested in this story and the characters. I couldn’t put this book down and I finished it in less than two days. I love everything about this book. The characters development is great, the plot is so much fun, and the writing is beautiful. This is definitely one of my all time favorites.

2. The Fill-In Boyfriend by Kasie West
I loved the characters, the plot, the writing, everything about this book.
There was so much character development, especially with Gia. And even though I didn’t really have anything in common with her, she still felt relatable.

1. Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz
I love this book. It was so surprisingly amazing. The writing is perfect and the characters are wonderful. I read this in one afternoon and I couldn’t put it down.

Book Photos (1 of 4)Stephanie’s Picks:

5. A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray 
This book is one of my all time favorites. A great story with a bunch of adventure , romance, and even time travel. Gives a great twist to a very original idea.

4. The Wrath and The Dawn by Renee Adieh
One of my top books from 2015, I couldn’t put this book down! A retelling of 1001 Nights (Arabian Nights) this book makes you feel as though you’re right smack dab in the Arabian desert on some of the most steamiest nights. A great plot, some of my favorite characters from 2015, I can’t wait to read The Rose & The Dagger this summer.

3.  The Sword of Summer (Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard) by Rick Riordan 
Rick Riordan can never do any wrong. A great book with another great background in mythology/lore. I love a good Riordan book, Percy Jackson will forever have a place in my heart but Magnus Chase comes into a close second. LOVE LOVE LOVE this book for a fun summer read.

2. Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes 
A summer in never complete in my book without a good fantasy novel. And I refrained from putting all high/ya fantasy on this list because I felt like most of you would get bored real quick. But fantasy is my all time favorite and I could never survive a summer without a great fantasy novel which is why I chose Falling Kingdoms. I don’t think I’ve loved a fantasy series (other than ToG which is also another one you should read if you haven’t, oh and Harry Potter) as much as I do Falling Kingdoms.

1. A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
So, I know most of you have probably already read this heartbreaking masterpiece, but I couldn’t go through a top 5 list without including my girl Sarah J. Maas. This book is an AMAZING book that I flew right through with all the action and steamy romance scenes, it’s most definitely a book to pick up during the summer, I promise you’ll get through it in a few days…it sucks you in and never lets you go.


Please let us know if you guys would like for us to continue doing collaborated posts. We’ll come up with some ideas, you could suggest some as well and we’ll be more than happy to make it a part of our blogging experience if you guys would like!

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ARC Review: The Only Thing Worse Than Me Is You by Lily Anderson

26114524The Only Thing Worse Than Me Is You by Lily Anderson

Expected publication: May 17th 2016

Trixie Watson has two very important goals for senior year: to finally save enough to buy the set of Doctor Who figurines at the local comic books store, and to place third in her class and knock Ben West–and his horrendous new mustache that he spent all summer growing–down to number four.

Trixie will do anything to get her name ranked over Ben’s, including give up sleep and comic books–well, maybe not comic books–but definitely sleep. After all, the war of Watson v. West is as vicious as the Doctor v. Daleks and Browncoats v. Alliance combined, and it goes all the way back to the infamous monkey bars incident in the first grade. Over a decade later, it’s time to declare a champion once and for all.

The war is Trixie’s for the winning, until her best friend starts dating Ben’s best friend and the two are unceremoniously dumped together and told to play nice. Finding common ground is odious and tooth-pullingly-painful, but Trixie and Ben’s cautious truce slowly transforms into a fandom-based tentative friendship. When Trixie’s best friend gets expelled for cheating and Trixie cries foul play, however, they have to choose who to believe and which side they’re on–and they might not pick the same side.

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I don’t know what I was expecting with this book but it was way better than I ever could have anticipated. I did have a few problems with the main character but I loved the concept of the book.
The writing was so great and flowed perfectly. I actually read this book in one day because I couldn’t put it down.
I did find Trixie to be annoying a lot of the time. There was this one part towards the beginning of the book that hit me wrong and I couldn’t shake it. She made a comment that because her friends wanted boyfriends that they were “on the fast track to becoming utterly antifeminist” and she also made a few comments that her friends couldn’t be both nerdy/geeky and have/want boyfriends. That really bothered me a lot and I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I went back and forth with myself over how I felt about it and if it was a big deal or not. But in the end, it really bugged me and because of that, I brought this book down from 4 star book to a 3. I know that might not be a big deal to some readers and that’s okay but it really bugged me.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book for the most part. I think a lot of people can relate to the characters and even though I don’t watch Doctor Who, I appreciated all the references as well as the all the other nerdy/geeky references (especially the Marvel ones).

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*advanced review copy of this book was provided by the publisher on NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*

 

Review: Daredevils by Shawn Vestal

25938453Daredevils by Shawn Vestal

Published April 12th 2016

From the winner of 2014’s PEN Robert W. Bingham Prize, an unforgettable debut novel about Loretta, a teenager married off as a “sister wife,” who makes a break for freedom 

At the heart of this exciting debut novel, set in Arizona and Idaho in the mid-1970s, is fifteen-year-old Loretta, who slips out of her bedroom every evening to meet her so-called gentile boyfriend. Her strict Mormon parents catch her returning one night, and promptly marry her off to Dean Harder, a devout yet materialistic fundamentalist who already has a wife and a brood of kids. The Harders relocate to his native Idaho, where Dean’s teenage nephew Jason falls hard for Loretta. A Zeppelin and Tolkien fan, Jason worships Evel Knievel and longs to leave his close-minded community. He and Loretta make a break for it. They drive all night, stay in hotels, and relish their dizzying burst of teenage freedom as they seek to recover Dean’s cache of “Mormon gold.” But someone Loretta left behind is on their trail… 

A riveting story of desire and escape, Daredevils boasts memorable set pieces and a rich cast of secondary characters. There’s Dean’s other wife, Ruth, who as a child in the 1950s was separated from her parents during the notorious Short Creek raid, when federal agents descended on a Mormon fundamentalist community. There’s Jason’s best friend, Boyd, part Native American and caught up in the activist spirit of the time, who comes along for the ride, with disastrous results. And Vestal’s ultimate creation is a superbly sleazy chatterbox—a man who might or might not be Evel Knievel himself—who works his charms on Loretta at a casino in Elko, Nevada.

A lifelong journalist whose Spokesman column is a fixture in Spokane, WA, Shawn has honed his fiction over many years, publishing in journals like McSweeney’s and Tin House. His stunning first collection, Godforsaken Idaho, burrowed into history as it engaged with masculinity and crime, faith and apostasy, and the West that he knows so well. Daredevils shows what he can do on a broader canvas–a fascinating, wide-angle portrait of a time and place that’s both a classic coming of age tale and a plunge into the myths of America, sacred and profane.

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This book was so incredibly interesting. I could barely put it down at times. I loved that it took place in the 1970s. I loved the characters and how complex and different they were. Everything was so well written, it blew my mind.
I highly recommend this to book everyone.

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I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

ARC Review: Ivory and Bone by Julie Eshbaugh

27064385Ivory and Bone by Julie Eshbaugh

Expected publication: June 14th 2016

A prehistoric fantasy—with allusions to Pride and Prejudice.

Hunting, gathering, and keeping his family safe—that’s the life seventeen-year-old Kol knows. Then bold, enigmatic Mya arrives from the south with her family, and Kol is captivated. He wants her to like and trust him, but any hopes of impressing her are ruined when he makes a careless—and nearly grave—mistake. However, there’s something more to Mya’s cool disdain…a history wrought with loss that comes to light when another clan arrives. With them is Lo, an enemy from Mya’s past who Mya swears has ulterior motives.

As Kol gets to know Lo, tensions between Mya and Lo escalate until violence erupts. Faced with shattering losses, Kol is forced to question every person he’s trusted. One thing is for sure: this was a war that Mya or Lo—Kol doesn’t know which—had been planning all along.

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I LOVED THIS BOOK SO MUCH, OH MY GOSH.
I don’t even know how to write a review for this book. I don’t know what else to other than I loved it.
I honestly loved everything about this book. I was a little weirded out by the writing style at first but I really enjoyed it. I thought it was different and fit the story really well.
I really liked the characters. They weren’t over the top or crazy original but they weren’t bland. They were normal but interesting.
I was very unsure about the love triangle (you know how much I loathe love triangles) but holy crap. I didn’t hate this one. I actually kind of liked it. I know, it’s shocking. But trust me. It actually adds to the story.
But the thing that I loved most about this book, the thing that makes this book one of my all time favorite books, is the concept. This is blurbed as a “A prehistoric fantasy—with allusions to Pride and Prejudice”. And let me tell you, that’s a perfect blurb. It’s confusing, I know, but trust me. It’s amazing. There’s mammoth hunts and saber tooth cats and it’s amazing.
Overall, I can’t express how much I loved this book. It’s so beautifully imagined and original. I loved everything about it.

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March Read Along and Giveaway!

March is around the corner and we’re all thinking about what we’re going to read. I know my TBR pile is a good four books tall right now, but there’s one that I’m looking forward to reading and hoping all of you will read it with me and Taylor. For the month of March Taylor and I will be reading  The Shadow Queen by C.J. Redwine and we hope you’ll all join us through means of social media and goodreads discussions.

We’ll be using #bibliomonthlyreads as a tag on instagram, twitter, tumblr and facebook. And when using these tags you’ll automatically be entered to win in our read along giveaway this month for a copy of  A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas! So please join us in enjoying this newly released book! And please comment with any questions at all!

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Happy Birthday Bibliophile Gathering!

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I want to announce that today was the day we began opening our site to blog posts, reviews, give aways, interviews, book tours, read alongs and many many more things. It’s with a very grateful heart that I thank each and every one of you for following us, reading our posts and just giving us great things to look forward to each time we read and post.

It’s been a very great year for us and I could never ever think about how far we’ve come. And our goals keep moving forward. I hope we can work with publishers, authors a lot more this year. And have things like interviews and book tours and have a great readalong interaction with all of you.

I hope you all continue to enjoy our blog posts as we continue to try and grow our reading community here at Bibliophile Gathering.

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Love you all!
Happy Reading <3

Taylor and Stephanie

Favorite Self Published Books | Top Five Wednesday

Top5Wednesday

Top 5 Wednesday was created by Lainey at gingerreadslainey on YouTube.

This week’s topic is favorite self published books, I haven’t read any that I know of, but these books are five self published books I’d like to read. I used this list to pick out the 5 self titled books I’d like to read.

Angelfall by Susan Ee
I’ve heard so much hype around this series and how great it is. I had absolute no clue that this was a self published book.

If I Stay by Gale Foreman
I wanted to read this before watching the movie but I couldn’t resist watching it, but it makes me want to read the book even more!

Seraphina by Rachel Hartman
I really want to read this book, I’ve tried once but couldn’t get into it, but I REALLY want to try and get this book read. I’ve never read a dragon based book before and it intrigues me so much!

The Body Electric by Beth Revis
I bought this book on e-book. And it’s one of my goals this year to read all the e-books I own as of right now and this beautiful looking book is among one of them!

The Final Empire (Mistborn) by Brandon Sanderson
So I’m absolutely blown away that this was self published. Brandon Sanderson is a writing machine. I’ve read Steelheart and it’s absolutely amazing that I cannot wait to begin the Mistborn series. And the fact that this was self published makes me appreciate it even more.

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