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Saving Winslow

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Perfect for fans of Charlotte’s Web and The One and Only Ivan, Saving Winslow is an uplifting modern classic in the making about a young boy who befriends an ailing newborn donkey and nurses him back to health, from New York Times bestseller and Newbery Medal winner Sharon Creech. Louie doesn't have the best luck when it comes to nurturing small creatures. So when his fathe Perfect for fans of Charlotte’s Web and The One and Only Ivan, Saving Winslow is an uplifting modern classic in the making about a young boy who befriends an ailing newborn donkey and nurses him back to health, from New York Times bestseller and Newbery Medal winner Sharon Creech. Louie doesn't have the best luck when it comes to nurturing small creatures. So when his father brings home a sickly newborn mini donkey, he's determined to save him. He names him Winslow. Taking care of him helps Louie feel closer to his brother, Gus, who is far, far away in the army. Everyone worries that Winslow won't survive, especially Louie’s quirky new friend, Nora, who has experienced loss of her own. But as Louie's bond with Winslow grows, surprising and life-altering events prove that this fragile donkey is stronger than anyone could have imagined. Written in the spirit of Creech favorites Moo and Love That Dog, this standout tale about love and friendship and letting go will tug at the heartstrings.


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Perfect for fans of Charlotte’s Web and The One and Only Ivan, Saving Winslow is an uplifting modern classic in the making about a young boy who befriends an ailing newborn donkey and nurses him back to health, from New York Times bestseller and Newbery Medal winner Sharon Creech. Louie doesn't have the best luck when it comes to nurturing small creatures. So when his fathe Perfect for fans of Charlotte’s Web and The One and Only Ivan, Saving Winslow is an uplifting modern classic in the making about a young boy who befriends an ailing newborn donkey and nurses him back to health, from New York Times bestseller and Newbery Medal winner Sharon Creech. Louie doesn't have the best luck when it comes to nurturing small creatures. So when his father brings home a sickly newborn mini donkey, he's determined to save him. He names him Winslow. Taking care of him helps Louie feel closer to his brother, Gus, who is far, far away in the army. Everyone worries that Winslow won't survive, especially Louie’s quirky new friend, Nora, who has experienced loss of her own. But as Louie's bond with Winslow grows, surprising and life-altering events prove that this fragile donkey is stronger than anyone could have imagined. Written in the spirit of Creech favorites Moo and Love That Dog, this standout tale about love and friendship and letting go will tug at the heartstrings.

30 review for Saving Winslow

  1. 4 out of 5

    Paul Hankins

    Review closer to release date, but. . .this is Sharon Creech. You're already heading away from this post to pre-order. I won't keep you any longer.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Heidi Burkhart

    A tender story about a boy who raises a tiny donkey. Perfect for elementary students.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Patrick

    So great to have a new Sharon Creech novel out in the world. Sweet, heart-felt story.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Leonard Kim

    I thought this was a better showcase for Creech’s formidable talents than some of her other recent books. Maybe a shade too “literary” at times, but I think both broadly appealing and unsurprisingly masterful.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Madison

    A heartwarming story of a young donkey, the boy who is determined to save him, and the way in which small things can sometimes have the biggest impact. Lyrical and sweet, Saving Winslow is a simple but touching story for young and middle-grade readers. When Louie is given another of his Uncle Pete’s orphan animals, a newborn donkey, everyone warns him not to get too attached, as it will probably die anyway. But there is something about the tiny, grey bundle that whispers to Louie that here is an A heartwarming story of a young donkey, the boy who is determined to save him, and the way in which small things can sometimes have the biggest impact. Lyrical and sweet, Saving Winslow is a simple but touching story for young and middle-grade readers. When Louie is given another of his Uncle Pete’s orphan animals, a newborn donkey, everyone warns him not to get too attached, as it will probably die anyway. But there is something about the tiny, grey bundle that whispers to Louie that here is an animal who wants to survive, and Louie is determined to be the one to save him. So, Louie names him Winslow and begins raise him. Short chapters, some no longer than half a page, make Saving Winslow a quick and easy book to fall into the rhythm of reading. These little chapters piece together a heartwarming story. Winslow and his gentle, bumbling antics can soften anything - the sadness and perpetual worry of Nora, Louie’s neighbour, who has faced her own losses and grief and is scared to form attachments, the girl troubles of Louie’s older friend, Mack, and especially the aching feeling Louie has when missing his brother, who is serving in the army. These intertwining stories of friendship and family are perfectly offset against the story of a brave young donkey and the boy who cares for him. The prose is simple and the setting almost timeless, and so it is easy to see Saving Winslow becoming a much-loved favourite, sitting nicely alongside the writing of Kate DiCamillo and Katherine Applegate. The publishers provided an advanced readers copy of this book for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own. Find more reviews, reading age guides, content advisory, and recommendations on my blog Madison's Library

  6. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

    I wanted to love this so much more. I feel like, much like a tiny premature donkey, I wanted this story to get fatter as it went along, but it just felt too light, to short. Some heavy topics were brought up, but then just sort of pushed away again. I feel like, even for a book for young kids, she could have dug deeper.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Jillian Anderson

    What a sweet read! Sharon Creech has done it again. Louie’s Dad brings home an orphaned donkey and Louie volunteers to raise it despite everyone telling him that the donkey may not make it. Nora, a neighbor girl, won’t even touch the donkey because she is afraid Winslow is in for a short life. But slowly Winslow makes his way into the hearts of Louie’s family and neighborhood. The way Louie believes in this spindlely Winslow is admirable.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Cristina Quattrone

    I know some reluctant readers who would be smitten by this story

  9. 5 out of 5

    Lorie Barber

    I find it nothing short of incredible that Sharon Creech continues to pack so much heartfelt emotion and incredible life lessons into a short-ish space. I have fallen in love with Winslow, Louie, and Nora and I know my students will, too. What a pleasure to read this summer morning.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Michele Knott

    Sharon Creech is always able to pack so many things to talk about in her books in a smaller number of pages than most. She's that wonderful with words.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Lynn

    Sigh! Louie and Winslow won my heart. Lovely!

  12. 4 out of 5

    Ms. Yingling

    E ARC from Edelweiss Plus When his somewhat irresponsible Uncle Pete's miniature donkey is ailing and gives birth prematurely, Louie's mother and father let Louie try to nurse the baby back to health, warning him the whole time that it is likely the animal won't make it. Since Louie is missing his brother Gus, who is in the army, and feels like his track record with keeping animals alive isn't great, Louie does his best. Louie hangs out with his best friend, Mack, a lot, and Mack has a huge crush E ARC from Edelweiss Plus When his somewhat irresponsible Uncle Pete's miniature donkey is ailing and gives birth prematurely, Louie's mother and father let Louie try to nurse the baby back to health, warning him the whole time that it is likely the animal won't make it. Since Louie is missing his brother Gus, who is in the army, and feels like his track record with keeping animals alive isn't great, Louie does his best. Louie hangs out with his best friend, Mack, a lot, and Mack has a huge crush on Claudine, who has just moved to town. Her sister Nora is a little younger, and when Nora meets the donkey (named Winslow), she doesn't want much to do with it, since her baby brother was also premature but didn't make it. Louie was a preemie and DID, so he has every confidence in Winslow. The donkey has some rough patches, but pulls through and starts to grow and become a bit more rambunctious, which doesn't please some of the neighbors, especially Mrs. Tooley, who claims that Winslow keeps her baby awake. Louie and Nora become friends, and when it is eventually clear that Winslow must move along, Nora helps Louie to find the best place for Winslow to belong. Strengths: This is one of those heart-tugging books that would make a great read aloud. Creech uses a lot of rich, figurative language, and with a cute cover like this, who would NOT root for Winslow? Weaknesses: This was slow moving and introspective, and something about the style reminded me of 1980s Patricia MacLachlan books. What I really think: I'm sure the public library will have a copy of this, so I think I will wait to purchase until I get a feel for my readers this year. The ones in the past would not have cared for this.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Sandy Brehl

    I can't imagine any reader not being a fan of Sharon Creech's books, but this latest is ideal for independent young readers and for use in classrooms. I'm a fan of read aloud novels in class, but particularly of high quality SHORT novels, allowing many more to be read over the course of a school year. In this case, the compelling main plot regarding a remarkable miniature donkey's survival will have listeners (and readers) on a page-turning frenzy. What Creech has managed to achieve, though, is I can't imagine any reader not being a fan of Sharon Creech's books, but this latest is ideal for independent young readers and for use in classrooms. I'm a fan of read aloud novels in class, but particularly of high quality SHORT novels, allowing many more to be read over the course of a school year. In this case, the compelling main plot regarding a remarkable miniature donkey's survival will have listeners (and readers) on a page-turning frenzy. What Creech has managed to achieve, though, is a seemingly simple novel with multilayered, interwoven, complex subplots, emotions, and secondary-but-essential characters. The ominous possibilities of death and danger are introduced immediately and develop throughout, but there are plenty of secure relationships, growing friendships, inferred personality needs and quirks to keep readers thinking and caring. What might have been a heartbreaking ending resolves in equally complex ways that let readers celebrate the conclusion rather than mourning it.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Karen Parisot

    When Louie’s dad brings home a newborn orphaned donkey, Louie is immediately smitten and volunteers to take care of him. The thing is though, Louie has a terrible track record when it comes to caring for small creatures. As in a zero percent success rate. He’s an enthusiastic and loving young caregiver though and is determined to save the baby donkey he names Winslow. An excellent book for middle grade readers. It’s all about responsibility and friendship. Ms. Creech is an award winning author an When Louie’s dad brings home a newborn orphaned donkey, Louie is immediately smitten and volunteers to take care of him. The thing is though, Louie has a terrible track record when it comes to caring for small creatures. As in a zero percent success rate. He’s an enthusiastic and loving young caregiver though and is determined to save the baby donkey he names Winslow. An excellent book for middle grade readers. It’s all about responsibility and friendship. Ms. Creech is an award winning author and after reading this book I can see why. The story just flows, it’s so well written. I think the ending is absolute perfection. I was really charmed by this one and I positively recommend it for all young readers especially the animal smitten ones. It is a wonderful story.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jill

    Louie (10) hasn't done a great job of taking care of pets in his lifetime. A few of his pets that have died or went missing were a snake, hamster, goldfish, and lizard. One day Louie's dad brings home a weak, orphaned mini-donkey from his Uncle Pete's farm. He knows that his luck with animals is about to change. Louie wants to make a difference like his brother, Gus, who is stationed out of state in the Army. His new friend, Nora, has doubts that Louie can save Winslow. Can Louie nurse the donke Louie (10) hasn't done a great job of taking care of pets in his lifetime. A few of his pets that have died or went missing were a snake, hamster, goldfish, and lizard. One day Louie's dad brings home a weak, orphaned mini-donkey from his Uncle Pete's farm. He knows that his luck with animals is about to change. Louie wants to make a difference like his brother, Gus, who is stationed out of state in the Army. His new friend, Nora, has doubts that Louie can save Winslow. Can Louie nurse the donkey back to health or will he experience another loss? Themes of friendship, love, overcoming obstacles to reach a goal. Great for fans of Charlotte's Web, Love that Dog, and Moo.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Elly Swartz

    Saving Winslow by Sharon Creech is a heartprint book that is masterfully told. And, while this is a story about saving a donkey, Creech has woven in so much more. It is a tale about a boy who struggles to find his purpose, a girl who’s afraid to love for fear of loss, and a family who misses a son who’s away serving our country. This is a story of believing and loving and finding ourselves. I highly recommend.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    A short but lovely tale of a boy and his donkey. Louie is a winsome hero... gentle yet determined that nothing bad will happen to his precious Winslow. Pessimistic and prickly Nora is an excellent foil for the optimistic Louie, but she's likable just the same. Recommended for fans of barnyard creatures and lovable underdogs.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Melissapalmer404

    Book #74 Read in 2018 Saving Winslow by Sharon Creech This is a sweet, cute read, geared towards middle school readers. Louie takes over the care of a poor, pitiful donkey that he names Winslow. He bottle feeds him, takes care of him, sleeps by him and hopes that Winslow will make it. This book shows the effect that a sweet animal can have on people...both young and old. I borrowed this book from the library.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Kris Patrick

    Sharon Creech makes every word count. I found myself rereading chapters to slow down and appreciate the writing perfection. Starts strong, finishes strong. I would read the first page as my book talk. A beautiful cover. I’ve been mighty generous with my stars this week. Maybe fall break fever is kicking in? Have I mentioned that I get two glorious weeks!?!?

  20. 4 out of 5

    Amanda Williams

    Always a fan!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Wendy

    Adorable.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Cassie Thomas

    Sharon has such a way with words. This is a sweet story that means so much more than just taking care of a donkey. There's grit, love, understanding, and compassion. Students will love to read this and will be rooting for Winslow and Louie from start to finish, and by the end, they will be rooting for Nora, too.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Brenda Kahn

    Oh my! My children’s lit lovin’ peeps! This! This book! Sharon Creech! It’s perfect! I need to read it again when I stop crying. Honestly! I was cackling my head off in the airport on the way here and crying my eyes out with love on the way out! What a mess I am! Review later!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Richie Partington

    Richie’s Picks: SAVING WINSLOW by Sharon Creech, HarperCollins/Joanna Cotler, September 2018, 176p., ISBN: 978-0-06-257070-3 “Me donkey hee, me donkey haw My donkey sleep in a pile of straw” -- from the Raffi version of the traditional song Tingalayo “Louie knelt beside the basket. A small gray head with black eyes and feathery eyelashes and sticking-up ears emerged. Attached to the head was a trembling thin body and four long spindly legs, all of it covered in splotchy gray fur scattered with brown Richie’s Picks: SAVING WINSLOW by Sharon Creech, HarperCollins/Joanna Cotler, September 2018, 176p., ISBN: 978-0-06-257070-3 “Me donkey hee, me donkey haw My donkey sleep in a pile of straw” -- from the Raffi version of the traditional song Tingalayo “Louie knelt beside the basket. A small gray head with black eyes and feathery eyelashes and sticking-up ears emerged. Attached to the head was a trembling thin body and four long spindly legs, all of it covered in splotchy gray fur scattered with brown freckles. It was not a dog or a cat. It was a pitiful-looking thing and it was gazing at Louie. He felt a sudden rush, as if the roof had peeled off the house and the sun had dived into every corner of the kitchen. ‘A goat?’ he asked, kneeling beside the basket. ‘No, a donkey,’ his father said. ‘A mini donkey, born last night.’ ‘A mini donkey?’ Louie’s hand cupped the donkey’s head, patting it gently. The donkey seemed too weak to move. ‘Something wrong with it?’ ‘The mother is sick, can’t take care of it.’ ‘Poor mama,’ Louie said. What will happen to it?’ ‘Probably go downhill fast. Might last a day or two.’ ‘No!’ ‘So,’ his mother said, ‘why do you have the donkey? Why did you bring it home if it might just die in a day or two?’ ‘I don’t know,’ his father said. ‘I felt sorry for it. I thought maybe we could at least watch it unit it--you know--until it dies.’ He whispered that last word. The donkey made a small noise that sounded like please. Louie lifted the donkey from the basket and held it close. It smelled of wet hay. It put its face against Louie’s neck and made that noise again. Please. ‘Okay,’ Louie said. ‘I accept the mission.’ ‘What mission?’ ‘To save this pitiful motherless donkey.’” Ten year-old Louie knows about surviving. While he cannot remember being born prematurely, he’s often heard the stories about how he made it against the odds. And while he hasn’t had the best of luck with the small creatures he’s cared for in the past, there’s something about this moment and this critter that causes him to focus, learn, and be determinedly optimistic. Louie has been practicing determined optimism. Gus, the big brother Louie idolizes, is away in the army. Maybe he’s serving in the midst of one of those interminable wars. The communications from Gus are short, terse, and precious to Louie and his parents. Perhaps, down inside, Louie believes that saving Winslow will somehow mean that Gus will also be okay. Into this dynamic steps Nora who is the new girl in town. Nora, a tenaciously memorable character, is the perfect foil to Louie. Nora has personally experienced grievous losses. Her first appraisal of Winslow is that he looks like a possum-goat. Nora is a terminal pessimist. She keeps the story real. But being around Winslow will also change Nora as it changes Louie. In third and fourth grades, I’d frequently stop by the school library after the dismissal bell, borrow a book, and finish it before bedtime. SAVING WINSLOW is the type of book a kid could gobble up. Richie Partington, MLIS Richie's Picks http://richiespicks.pbworks.com https://www.facebook.com/richiespicks/ [email protected]

  25. 4 out of 5

    Chris

    Summary (book jacket) Louie doesn't have the best luck when it comes to nurturing small creatures. So, when his father brings home a sickly newborn mini donkey, he's determined to save him. He names him Winslow. Taking care of him helps Louie feel closer to his brother, Gus, who is far, far away in the army. Everyone worries that Winslow won't survive, especially Louie’s quirky new friend, Nora, who has experienced loss of her own. But as Louie's bond with Winslow grows, surprising and life-alteri Summary (book jacket) Louie doesn't have the best luck when it comes to nurturing small creatures. So, when his father brings home a sickly newborn mini donkey, he's determined to save him. He names him Winslow. Taking care of him helps Louie feel closer to his brother, Gus, who is far, far away in the army. Everyone worries that Winslow won't survive, especially Louie’s quirky new friend, Nora, who has experienced loss of her own. But as Louie's bond with Winslow grows, surprising and life-altering events prove that this fragile donkey is stronger than anyone could have imagined. Comments (Mine) Sharon Creech is one of my favorite authors. The feelings and images she is able to convey with just a minimum of words is astounding. Some of her books are written in verse. Saving Winslow is not, but the writing is rhythmic and almost poetic. On the surface it is a simple story, but it packs a tremendous amount of emotion between the lines. It’s not easy finding well written middle grade fiction books. Many try too hard to attract readers with bizarre plots or flippant characters. This book does neither. It is just a well written realistic fiction story with sympathetic and relatable characters. Chapters are short – some no longer than half a page. It is a quick and easy read and these little chapters piece together a heartwarming story. I am highly recommending Saving Winslow for either girls or boys in grades 3 and up, or perhaps even second graders with higher reading skills. This is high quality writing for lower middle grade readers.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Joan Marie

    This quiet read from Creech touches the heart of any animal lover. 10-year-old Louie was a premie. Just like Winslow, the miniature donkey. Louie takes right away to Louie, and nurses him to health. Only to have to make a decision he'd rather not have to make. Two side stories add depth to primary story; each side story offers opportunities for additional insights, perspectives, and compassion. And I love how she wove an image of one of Winslow Homer's painting into the story. But I won't reveal This quiet read from Creech touches the heart of any animal lover. 10-year-old Louie was a premie. Just like Winslow, the miniature donkey. Louie takes right away to Louie, and nurses him to health. Only to have to make a decision he'd rather not have to make. Two side stories add depth to primary story; each side story offers opportunities for additional insights, perspectives, and compassion. And I love how she wove an image of one of Winslow Homer's painting into the story. But I won't reveal the significance now. Saving Winslow would make a great read-aloud for classrooms, too! Some of my favorite passages: "Louie urged the donkey to take more milk. 'Please, Winslow, please?'" And he wondered, had his parents begged him to stay alive? Did they hover over him like he was hovering over Winslow? Did they urge him to keep breathing? Did they pat him and talk to him? And did that help him?" p. 21

  27. 5 out of 5

    Jeanell

    #Partner #KLE ✨BookReview✨Thank you @KidLitExchange for a review copy of this book. All opinions are my own. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ In Sharon Creech’s new middle grade novel (debuts 9/18), a young boy named Louie finds himself alone. His older brother Gus has gone off to war, his best friend seems to have new middle school concerns, and everything he’s ever cared for has either died or run away. Things change when Louie’s parents receive a newborn donkey that isn’t expected to make it through the night. Without #Partner #KLE ✨BookReview✨Thank you @KidLitExchange for a review copy of this book. All opinions are my own. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ In Sharon Creech’s new middle grade novel (debuts 9/18), a young boy named Louie finds himself alone. His older brother Gus has gone off to war, his best friend seems to have new middle school concerns, and everything he’s ever cared for has either died or run away. Things change when Louie’s parents receive a newborn donkey that isn’t expected to make it through the night. Without hesitation Louie finds himself doing everything in his power to keep Winslow alive. In this short novel, Sharon Creech tells the story of friendship in a simple, yet powerful way. She brings together characters by connecting their fears and losses – even when they don’t see it coming. Laced with themes of persistence, perspective, and positive thinking, Saving Winslow will have you rooting for a donkey while filled with hope for a boy.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Kristen

    Edelweiss provided me a DRC of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was really excited to get an DRC of this one, because I loved last year's Moo. I adored the story of a girl and a cow, so I thought the story of a boy and a donkey would be just as enjoyable. And while the story is cute, and there are some great issues addressed (loss and grief, friendship, responsibility), this one just didn't pack the same emotional punch for me. I wish Louie's relationship with his enlisted brother Gus Edelweiss provided me a DRC of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was really excited to get an DRC of this one, because I loved last year's Moo. I adored the story of a girl and a cow, so I thought the story of a boy and a donkey would be just as enjoyable. And while the story is cute, and there are some great issues addressed (loss and grief, friendship, responsibility), this one just didn't pack the same emotional punch for me. I wish Louie's relationship with his enlisted brother Gus had been explored more, and I wish that Nora's character had gotten more depth--she was just starting to be interesting instead of annoying and the story was over. Young readers who love animals will love the story (and want a baby donkey for their very own), but I guess needed a little more.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Betty

    SAVING WINSLOW is a truly heart-warming story of a boy befriending a sick mini donkey. Louie is used to his father bringing home fatally ill animals from his uncle’s farm. But when he father brings home a scrawny little donkey Louie is determined that Winslow (as Louie names him) will NOT die. Louis misses his brother Gus who is away serving in the military but he finds that caring for Winslow helps Louie somehow feel closer to his brother. Everyone is so sure that Winslow won't survive, especial SAVING WINSLOW is a truly heart-warming story of a boy befriending a sick mini donkey. Louie is used to his father bringing home fatally ill animals from his uncle’s farm. But when he father brings home a scrawny little donkey Louie is determined that Winslow (as Louie names him) will NOT die. Louis misses his brother Gus who is away serving in the military but he finds that caring for Winslow helps Louie somehow feel closer to his brother. Everyone is so sure that Winslow won't survive, especially Louie’s classmate Nora. After the deaths of a baby brother and her dog, Nora is reluctant to get close to anything or anyone. But how can anyone turn away from cute little Winslow! This is a beautifully written uplifting story of friendships and love. Perfect for ages 8-12. Thank you to HarperCollins Children’s Books and Joanna Cotler Books for the advance copy to review.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Kate

    Louie sounds older than his 10 years (it’s an unusual kid to use the word ‘unkempt’) but this is forgotten as you fall for him and his LGD, little gray donkey. Creech’s writing is straight forward, yet poetic at times. The undercurrent of the story—why care for something that will go away or die—is gently shared through Louie missing his older brother, who’s in the military, and a new neighbor and friend Nora who grieves for a baby brother born premature and who died. Caring for Winslow the donk Louie sounds older than his 10 years (it’s an unusual kid to use the word ‘unkempt’) but this is forgotten as you fall for him and his LGD, little gray donkey. Creech’s writing is straight forward, yet poetic at times. The undercurrent of the story—why care for something that will go away or die—is gently shared through Louie missing his older brother, who’s in the military, and a new neighbor and friend Nora who grieves for a baby brother born premature and who died. Caring for Winslow the donkey provides them with an opportunity to make a decision to have Winslow go elsewhere without feeling he’s lost to them. As Louie says, he worries about the worst and hopes for the best. The size, white space and number of pages give the impression of a quick read, which it is, but you linger some and hope for the best for them all.

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