Shatter the Sky (Shatter the Sky, #1)
Raised among the ruins of a conquered mountain nation, Maren dreams only of sharing a quiet life with her girlfriend Kaia—until the day Kaia is abducted by the Aurati, prophetic agents of the emperor, and forced to join their ranks. Desperate to save her, Maren hatches a plan to steal one of the emperor’s coveted dragons and storm the Aurati stronghold.If Maren is to have any hope of succeeding, she must become an apprentice to the Aromatory—the emperor’s mysterious dragon trainer. But Maren is unprepared for the dangerous secrets she uncovers: rumors of a lost prince, a brewing rebellion, and a prophecy that threatens to shatter the empire itself. Not to mention the strange dreams she’s been having about a beast deep underground…With time running out, can Maren survive long enough to rescue Kaia from impending death? Or could it be that Maren is destined for something greater than she could have ever imagined?

Shatter the Sky (Shatter the Sky, #1) Details

TitleShatter the Sky (Shatter the Sky, #1)
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseJul 30th, 2019
PublisherSimon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Rating
GenreFantasy, LGBT, Young Adult, Dragons

Shatter the Sky (Shatter the Sky, #1) Review

  • Elise (TheBookishActress)
    January 1, 1970
    being gay is about stealing a dragon to save your girlfriend from a corrupt empire
  • Mackenzi
    January 1, 1970
    Everything is beautiful and nothing hurts.
  • Cece (ProblemsOfaBookNerd)
    January 1, 1970
    sapphic girls and dragons???uhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh????this was written with me, specifically, in mind so just go ahead and jot that down
  • anna (readingpeaches)
    January 1, 1970
    you had me at girlfriends and then you added dragons :o
  • Chelsea
    January 1, 1970
    book synopsis: girl steals a dragon to save her kidnapped girlfriendrelease date: 2019me: *sliding the author my life savings under the table* spring 2018
  • el
    January 1, 1970
    put “her girlfriend” and “dragon” in the same sentence and that’s it. that’s it you got me
  • Ellie (faerieontheshelf)
    January 1, 1970
    I’m sorry but this sounds SO DARN LIT that I might actually cry out of sheer delight I feel truly blessed to live in an era where such delightful stories are being told 😭
  • rachel
    January 1, 1970
    update: this cover is super underwhelming... when her girlfriend is kidnapped, Maren vows to rescue her, even if it means stealing a dragon from the corrupt empire.pls give me all the sapphic dragon fantasies
  • Dahlia
    January 1, 1970
    Aah that was so satisfying (despite being a trilogy opener), so immersive, and so much fun. Great for fans of Audrey Coulthurst's Inkmistress, of which I definitely count myself. Long RTC.
  • Crowinator
    January 1, 1970
    I like this book a whole lot. It surprised me. I hope they pick a different cover by the time it comes out because I don't know a lot of teens that would give it a shot based on this one. Review to come.Previously On This Review:My ARC bills this as an "angry feminist bisexual dragon YA fantasy novel" and I can't tell if this word salad is a meaningful statement, but I guess we'll see.
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  • fatima♐
    January 1, 1970
    Lesbians and dragons?????
  • ellie
    January 1, 1970
    GAYS...ON DRAGONS...YES? YES. YES.
  • ak
    January 1, 1970
    It has been a long time since I read a new dragon book and I didn’t realize how long til I read this one. I love a dragon book and this is a good one. Also this had strong Daine and Skysong energy which is one of my favorite things. More dragons please.
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  • Kogiopsis
    January 1, 1970
    hey quick question why the HELL did I think it was a good idea to read this seven months before it's releasedwhy did I give myself seven EXTRA MONTHS of waiting for the sequelI am suffering(or: it was really good, but I just want! more!)
  • ⚔ Silvia ⚓
    January 1, 1970
    I was sent this book as an advanced copy by the publisher via NetGalley for reviewing purposes, but all opinions are my own. An interesting worldbuilding and a perfect story for fans of The Dragon Prince, which was ultimately just a little too forgettable for me.This book starts with a really great premise, a QPOC girl who decides to go save her girlfriend and undertakes a journey in a very interesting fantasy world with dragons that can bond to humans. I thought the execution was okay for a de I was sent this book as an advanced copy by the publisher via NetGalley for reviewing purposes, but all opinions are my own. An interesting worldbuilding and a perfect story for fans of The Dragon Prince, which was ultimately just a little too forgettable for me.This book starts with a really great premise, a QPOC girl who decides to go save her girlfriend and undertakes a journey in a very interesting fantasy world with dragons that can bond to humans. I thought the execution was okay for a debut, but if you've read a lot of fantasy books this will read a little too generic. The protagonist, Maren, is on a deadline to save her girlfriend, and yet we conveniently forget about the time issue for the time that it takes Maren to learn useful skills and important bits of worldbuilding and forge new friendships and relationships. Then time is suddenly relevant again and everything has to move forward rather fast. So, overall the pacing doesn't usually bother me and it didn't here, but it was definitely something I noticed. Some things were also very predictable, and all the foreshadowing was very obviously foreshadowing from the moment you read it and not 100 pages later when it actually became relevant. This is all just nitpicking and it's just something you notice if you've read a lot of books, like I said.Probably my favorite part of the whole book was the dragon egg that reminded me so much of The Dragon Prince, one of my favorite shows. It was really cute.Maren is a bi girl in an already established relationship with a girl, that will be the reason for her whole quest. And here comes the part of this review that I dread to write, because it's impossible for me not to mention it but as a bi girl I am aware of all the nuance in this. Of course, there's a boy and Maren is like, immediately attracted to him. While still in a relationship with Kaia, her girlfriend. Think of it as you like, I personally was annoyed at this aspect of the story. There are other ways to show bisexual attraction without involving actual emotional cheating (and I use this term because it was more than just, "oh he's so hot."). Does it happen IRL? Of course. But maybe it's not great in general and especially when the bisexual character is the one doing it. In any case I was mostly able to overlook it and pin it to the writer's inexperience, I just want to warn other bisexual readers that this is something that happens.So, would I recommend this book? I think the worldbuilding was interesting and it has a lot of potential for the rest of the series, if you can overlook some of the more debut-y aspects. I'm going to keep an eye out for the next installment if I remember, but even just a few weeks after reading it I don't remember enough about this to really crave the sequel.
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  • Stéphanie -is reading her life away-
    January 1, 1970
    I like this book a lot i alway enjoy a good dragon story and this one was good Can wait to read the next one !
  • Sami
    January 1, 1970
    Every so often, a book comes along that hits all of your favorite things and knocks it out of the park. For me, Shatter the Sky is that book.Dragons? It's got 'em. Queer POC protagonist? Check. A world reminiscent of AVATAR THE LAST AIRBENDER? You got it! Wells has sharp, nuanced political commentary and a fast ypaced plot full of intrigue and deception that will delight fantasy fans everywhere.
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  • Biz (Formerly Rachael)
    January 1, 1970
    THIS RELEASE IS OVER A YEAR AWAY AND IT ALREADY OWNS ME. sapphic girls??? dragons?? sign me tf up
  • Jessi (Novel Heartbeat)
    January 1, 1970
    The cover is terrible, but DRAGONS.
  • Jocelyn
    January 1, 1970
    2019 is the year that QPOC are showing up in YA to burn the system to the ground and I could not stan harder if I tried. This dragon didn't smell like anything I recognized, I realized... Maybe the smell I'd been associating with dragons all this time was the scent of their fear. Maybe all the things I'd learned about dragons were half-truths, words misshaped by the mouths of their captors. This is a gloriously fresh take on dragons and magic and oppression. Maren's journey is a familiar one, bu 2019 is the year that QPOC are showing up in YA to burn the system to the ground and I could not stan harder if I tried. This dragon didn't smell like anything I recognized, I realized... Maybe the smell I'd been associating with dragons all this time was the scent of their fear. Maybe all the things I'd learned about dragons were half-truths, words misshaped by the mouths of their captors. This is a gloriously fresh take on dragons and magic and oppression. Maren's journey is a familiar one, but every twist that Wells has added in here makes it surprising and delightful. It also has quite possibly some of the most interesting and unique forms of magic I've ever encountered - including a people whose songs connect them to the land and each other, and an entire dragon training division that is devised on oils and chemistry. I came here for the story of a bisexual girl who sets off to steal a dragon and bring back her girlfriend, and what I got blew my expectations out of the water. (view spoiler)[I mean, book 2 is absolutely going to start with my girl going to save a prince what more could I want??? (hide spoiler)]This is an amazing debut and a start to what I'm sure will be a fantastic series.
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  • Kathy Temean
    January 1, 1970
    Great new debut fantasy YA. Dragons, a girl, and a boy twist - hard not to love this book. I'm impressed by how the author gives us a fantasy story where all the characters are so well defined that it is easy to keep everyone straight. No need to look back to figure out who's who. Also, Rebecca never over does description and does a great job weaving it into the story.The main character faces adventure, intrigue, and fulfills her destiny without even realizing how important she is to saving her Great new debut fantasy YA. Dragons, a girl, and a boy twist - hard not to love this book. I'm impressed by how the author gives us a fantasy story where all the characters are so well defined that it is easy to keep everyone straight. No need to look back to figure out who's who. Also, Rebecca never over does description and does a great job weaving it into the story.The main character faces adventure, intrigue, and fulfills her destiny without even realizing how important she is to saving her world. By the end of the book, she has accomplished saving her girlfriend, discovered a prince, and is surprised by how much she cares about him and their friendship. Oh, and I love the baby dragon - great addition to the characters. I'm sad I have to wait to read the next book, but this one has a satisfying ending. Even if book two doesn't come out for over a year, with way the author handled the characters, it shouldn't be a strain to pick up the next one and continue the story.
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  • Nia •ShadesOfPaper•
    January 1, 1970
    ARC provided by Simon & SchusterI’m here for the gay
  • Ren
    January 1, 1970
    haven’t read the book yet but five stars because I trust Rebecca Kim Wells with my life
  • Lizzy_Someone
    January 1, 1970
    (This review is based on an advanced reader's copy provided by NetGalley.)3.5 stars rounded up. While not earth-shattering, this was a solid, enjoyable, quick read. It has a similar feel to Of Fire and Stars (a book I wasn't very impressed with), but this book is better: more creative, more intricately plotted, more unpredictable. I will say the plotting is not exactly Dickensian - I feel like many readers, especially adult readers who are deeply familiar with YA tropes, will find some of the re (This review is based on an advanced reader's copy provided by NetGalley.)3.5 stars rounded up. While not earth-shattering, this was a solid, enjoyable, quick read. It has a similar feel to Of Fire and Stars (a book I wasn't very impressed with), but this book is better: more creative, more intricately plotted, more unpredictable. I will say the plotting is not exactly Dickensian - I feel like many readers, especially adult readers who are deeply familiar with YA tropes, will find some of the reveals not particularly surprising. How to put this? I didn't predict the reveals, but afterward I felt as though I should have seen them coming; they managed to surprise me even though some of them felt almost familiar. But it was still a good time.The other big difference is that Of Fire and Stars is straightforwardly a romance (and, in my opinion, does that part well), while this book has an established relationship and, by the end of the book, hints of a second, competing love interest. This book is more about the main character's own character arc - which is nicely done - than about a romance arc. Another book this reminded me of is The Abyss Surrounds Us, though that's sci-fi rather than fantasy: both books are based on the concept of fantastical beasts that trained humans can control through special devices. In this book, humans control dragons via scents - a concept I really enjoyed. This particular type of fantasy isn't my favorite, in general - it has a lot of names of fantasy geopolitical entities (provinces? nations? not totally clear), which I always find hard to keep track of. But I liked this book more than I like most books that do this, and it had some interesting, if basic, political worldbuilding, like how the Aurati (the emperor's special police force) are feared and hated in the main character's hometown but revered in other regions. A cool thing about this book is that (also like Of Fire and Stars) it's set in a fantasy world that seems to have no sexuality- or gender-based discrimination or history thereof. The main character and her girlfriend never hesitate to be open about their relationship, even when they're being scrutinized by the emperor's hostile police force that has unchecked power over the populace. (Bonus: the girlfriend has two moms!) Also, most of the most powerful characters other than the emperor are women, the main character has her mother's last name instead of her father's, and her mother is a government official while her father is a homemaker. I spent a lot of the book wishing there were even more dragon content, but it delivered in the end. The book stuck the landing with a great dragon scene. In fact, the ending was so satisfying that I'm not sure if I'll read the sequels. Frankly, another reason I'm iffy on the sequels is that the main character has already sort of almost cheated on her girlfriend with the second (male) love interest, and the book seems to be hinting that she's going to go further down that path, whether by cheating or breaking up with her girlfriend, and I don't really want to read either of those outcomes. (I'm not at all suggesting that those two outcomes are comparable - you're allowed to break up with people! I am bisexual and I support books with bisexual m/f romances - Noteworthy by Riley Redgate is a great one. I just personally am not interested in reading either of those outcomes in this case.) I was excited that the book had an established f/f relationship, because I don't see a lot of those, so I was disappointed to see it start to fall apart this way. And here's the thing: if the book made a good case for it, if it showed us how the competing love interest is better for Maren than her girlfriend is, I wouldn't mind so much. But he's not even a good love interest! He keeps hitting on her even after she tells him she has a girlfriend!Overall verdict: If I had not already read this book but somehow knew the exact degree to which I would enjoy it, I probably wouldn't buy it, but I would definitely still read it.
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  • Olivia Farr
    January 1, 1970
    SHATTER THE SKY follows, Maren, who has been raised in a small mountain town. She and her girlfriend, Kaia, have big dreams of leaving and carving their own path. First, they must get through a ceremony with the Aurati of the emperor, who had conquered the country in which their town resides, and who frequently take girls from their village for unknown reasons. Kaia reassures Maren- but then, Kaia is taken. Maren plots to steal a dragon and save Kaia from the Aurati.As she travels into the Zefed SHATTER THE SKY follows, Maren, who has been raised in a small mountain town. She and her girlfriend, Kaia, have big dreams of leaving and carving their own path. First, they must get through a ceremony with the Aurati of the emperor, who had conquered the country in which their town resides, and who frequently take girls from their village for unknown reasons. Kaia reassures Maren- but then, Kaia is taken. Maren plots to steal a dragon and save Kaia from the Aurati.As she travels into the Zefedi lands, she must pose as one of them and infiltrate the fort where the dragons are trained. Beginning as a food taster, she schemes to get closer by becoming an intern for the Aromatory and learn how to train the dragons. As the clock ticks against Kaia, Maren pushes forward to achieve her task. However, the world is more complex than she anticipated and many surprises are in store.What I loved: Maren is a fantastic main character, and I loved following her journey. Plus, it’s always great to see LGBTQIA representation in YA fiction, especially when that is not the primary focus but just a part of the characters. The world-building is enough to be intriguing but not enough to overwhelm. However, the glimpses into folklore/legends were fascinating, and I really hope to get more of the history of this world in future books.What left me wanting more: The plot drags a bit as Maren seeks to find a way to steal a dragon. Her time as a food taster and then working her way to the Aromatory was a little slow. However, it does speed up quickly in the last half of the book as there is more action/advancing plot.I also would have liked more background/context for Maren and Kaia’s relationship. We get glimpses at the beginning and then it falls to the wayside. More passion about Kaia, rather than just saving her, would have been lovely to see throughout the book. However, as it is, this leaves the door open to a potential other love interest/triangle. Still, it would have been nice to have Maren think more about Kaia throughout (e.g. remember their past, consider how Kaia would view the adventures, etc.) to reconnect with the passion of why she is going to such lengths to save her.Final verdict: Overall, this is an exciting start to a new YA fantasy series, and I would definitely love to continue with the series. With an intriguing new world, LGBTQIA representation, and dragons, this book is sure to delight fans of immersive YA fantasy.Please note that I received an ARC from the publisher through netgalley. All opinions are my own.
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  • Aly
    January 1, 1970
    Ok sooooo I don't really (or almost never) like books that have dragons in them. Is that weird? I just don't seem as interested.But this book. THIS. BOOK. I may actually start to enjoy books that involve dragons just because of Shatter the Sky.Just take my stars. TAKE THEM. I only have 4.25/5 to offer, but that's way more than I expected to give. So. The book. Can I just start this off by saying I appreciate just how outwardly queer this is? It doesn't hide anything and just goes out full force Ok sooooo I don't really (or almost never) like books that have dragons in them. Is that weird? I just don't seem as interested.But this book. THIS. BOOK. I may actually start to enjoy books that involve dragons just because of Shatter the Sky.Just take my stars. TAKE THEM. I only have 4.25/5 to offer, but that's way more than I expected to give. So. The book. Can I just start this off by saying I appreciate just how outwardly queer this is? It doesn't hide anything and just goes out full force like "Yes. This is what I am. So what? Deal with it." I love it. I love the political commentary woven into the plot -because I mean I'm a 20 year old female Chicana in Cali, I live for politics- and I seriously think it helps out with the complexity of the plot. The characters are so relatable and enjoyable when it comes to their strenghts, weaknesses, and their goals. Maren is just trying to do her best to be able to save Kaia, and I do love me a good reluctant hero story tbh. Going back to the dragons: It didn't bother me at all! I found them to not be as in-my-face as I expected based on the summary, and I'm pretty glad about that! It was a good balance and I thought it worked out fine! Only issues is that I did find the pacing to drag at some points in the middle. It was enough to bother me at times, but it would recover well enough that I could move on. Again, dragons are a hard pitch for me, so even though I was fine with it, it still takes a while for me to fully enjoy them. That's more of a me problem though and not so much the book. I'd still be interested to read the sequel though!So yeah! I really think this is one worth checking out! It's a really strong debut novel, and I'll be looking forward to the next book and any other works Rebecca has planned!ARC provided to me by the publisher in exchange for my honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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  • Jenny
    January 1, 1970
    I received a copy of this book from the publisher, in exchange for an honest review.Trigger warnings: racism, colonialism, violence5 ⭐Oh, that was GOOD!!!!!!!! I wasn't too sure I would like this book, considering how some of my previous Simon & Schuster reads were a bit too heavy on the romantic side (read here: all the Cassie Clare books) and, while the action was good, I rapidly lost interest among the multiple love stories. But this book was actually really light on the romance, and the I received a copy of this book from the publisher, in exchange for an honest review.Trigger warnings: racism, colonialism, violence5 ⭐️Oh, that was GOOD!!!!!!!! I wasn't too sure I would like this book, considering how some of my previous Simon & Schuster reads were a bit too heavy on the romantic side (read here: all the Cassie Clare books) and, while the action was good, I rapidly lost interest among the multiple love stories. But this book was actually really light on the romance, and the little touches it had were perfectly balanced with the rest of the story.I have to say, for my first LGBT+ read for Pride month, I was pleasantly surprised. Maren is bisexual and is in love with Kaia. There are a few examples of same-gender couples (Maren and Kaia, Kaia's mothers) and no homophobia or biphobia or whatever, which was GREAT! I'm happy to come across a book that doesn't include mandatory homophobia as soon as you get same-gender couples. It seems perfectly fine in Zefed to not be heterosexual.There's also the fact that all of the characters are POC. ALL OF THEM! It's one of the rare high fantasy novels I've read where there isn't a single white person (that I remember), and it was just as good as any white-centric fantasy I've ever read.Talking about race, I can't skip over the fact that Ilvera seems to be some kind of indigenous land that was appropriated by the emperor. The colonialism theme is present throughout the book and Maren frequently thinks about the prejudice she would face, if she were to reveal where she's from. It's not too heavy, but it reminded me of Native Americans/First Nations history - with the addition of dragons.And the dragons are incredible! I want more of them. More and freer dragons in the next book please!!I am already waiting for the sequel!!!
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  • ☄ ari
    January 1, 1970
    This review is based on an ARC I received from the publishers in exchange for an honest review.3.5 stars. This was fun! Think, a super diverse high fantasy with dragons and a bi mc who is one of very few who can communicate with them. The first half was pretty slow paced but the second half was considerably more exciting and that ending was very cool and makes me excited to see what will happen in the sequel.I liked the mc & the world & the dragon aspect was super cool (once they were ac This review is based on an ARC I received from the publishers in exchange for an honest review.3.5 stars. This was fun! Think, a super diverse high fantasy with dragons and a bi mc who is one of very few who can communicate with them. The first half was pretty slow paced but the second half was considerably more exciting and that ending was very cool and makes me excited to see what will happen in the sequel.I liked the mc & the world & the dragon aspect was super cool (once they were actually introduced - it took a hot minute). My main disappointment was the romance. I was expecting it to be very centred around a f/f which it wasn't. The premise is, when in reality the mc is only really interacting with her girlfriend for about 3 chapters in the entire novel - it's very centred around an almost m/f romance. As someone who's bi myself, I do love seeing bi characters in other relationships not just same sex (it makes you no less bisexual to be in m/f relationship despite what some people think lmao), but it wasn't quite what the premise of the book was promising so it felt disappointing as I was hoping for something different.Apart from the romance, I would say this book delivered. Loved the diversity (there's like... not a single white person in sight folks - and there's also no discrimination against lgb relationships), I loved the dragons (baby dragons being cute and mewing!!), and while a lot of the plot / character twists felt typical of young adult fantasy tropes, it was still satisfying and the ending was just... Badass.That is all. Thanks for coming to my TED talk.
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  • R
    January 1, 1970
    Shatter the Sky was an intriguing young adult LGBTQIA fantasy novel that contained the following : kingdoms controlled by a tyrant, fulfilling prophecies, young women ripped from their homes and loved ones, a daughter of dragons, and of course, dragons. It was also a story of love. When Kaia was taken from her home, her heartmate Maren was determined to do anything to get her back. Undeterred by the mounting dangers that awaited her in her quest to steal and then bond with a dragon, Maren raced Shatter the Sky was an intriguing young adult LGBTQIA fantasy novel that contained the following : kingdoms controlled by a tyrant, fulfilling prophecies, young women ripped from their homes and loved ones, a daughter of dragons, and of course, dragons. It was also a story of love. When Kaia was taken from her home, her heartmate Maren was determined to do anything to get her back. Undeterred by the mounting dangers that awaited her in her quest to steal and then bond with a dragon, Maren raced against time to save Kaia before death claimed her. This novel had an interesting storyline with young adults trying to change their political and tyrannical environment. Added to that was the strength of character demonstrated by a young woman who sought to right some wrongs by those in power and possibly save her homeland. Overall, this was a very engaging and well written read that will certainly captivate its targeted audience, as well as adult readers. Highly recommended!
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  • USOM
    January 1, 1970
    (Disclaimer: I received this book from Netgalley. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.) You had me at sapphic adventurers and dragons. But Shatter the Sky is even more than that. Not only is it a series opener (and you will immediately scream for book two), but it is a story about confronting hardship and change. We've seen so many adventurers who have braved dangerous odds for the ones we love and seeing it fueled by f/f love is even more fulfilling.Shatter the Sky is a (Disclaimer: I received this book from Netgalley. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.) You had me at sapphic adventurers and dragons. But Shatter the Sky is even more than that. Not only is it a series opener (and you will immediately scream for book two), but it is a story about confronting hardship and change. We've seen so many adventurers who have braved dangerous odds for the ones we love and seeing it fueled by f/f love is even more fulfilling.Shatter the Sky is a book about a moment in time - a bubble about ready to burst - as the world is going to change for them - ripped apart by prophecy and uncertainty. It's a book that is very aware of what it's like to live in a home that isn't technically ours anymore, a history that has been stolen from us, and how Maren has to steal a dragon to rescue her girlfriend.
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