Virtual Events

A.J. Verdelle with Anita Gail Jones - Miss Chloe (Online Event)

Thursday, June 2, 2022 - 1:00pm

A.J. Verdelle
in conversation with Anita Gail Jones

Miss Chloe

Live Online
Thurs., June 2, 2022 • 1:00pm PT

This event will be hosted online by Book Passage. Please contact webmaster@bookpassage.com with questions regarding online events.
 

"If you let a black girl loose in a library, you may not recognize the woman who emerges."
   — from Miss Chloe

Toni Morrison, born Chloe A. Wofford, was a towering figure in the world of literature when she entered A.J. Verdelle’s life. Their literary friendship was a young writer’s dream — simultaneously exhilarating, intimidating, fulfilling, and challenging. The relationship crossed generations, spanned several cycles in life, exhibited high and low notes, reached and dipped and found its way. Like many women friends, these two writers imagined and built a relationship that was responsive, inventive, and engaged.

Miss Chloe powerfully situates the risks writers face and the freedom they find when they put Black women’s lives into words. Verdelle chronicles her grief at Morrison’s passing, and finds comfort in Morrison’s astute advice — wisdom Verdelle didn’t always recognize at the time. In this pensive and intricately lyrical book, Verdelle honors Morrison among the cultural greats, while illuminating and celebrating the power of language, legacy, and genius.

A. J. Verdelle is an award-winning novelist and essayist. She is a recipient of a Whiting Writer’s Award and teaches in the low-residency MFA program at Lesley University, and teaches undergraduates at Morgan State University. She remains a working mother, and feels confident that the western, Genuine Cowboy, will eventually have a life in print. 

Anita Gail Jones is a visual artist and writer, born and raised in Albany, Georgia. Her Fine Arts degree is from Guilford College in Greensboro, NC. In the early 90s, writing and illustrating children's stories lead Anita to oral tradition storytelling and working in San Francisco Bay Area (SFBA) schools as an artist-in-residence, in addition to freelance writing, and tailoring storytelling programs for libraries, corporations and private clients. Jones contributed to Gardening Among Friends: Practical Essays by Master Gardeners, Edited by Barbara J. Euser; wrote gardening articles for The Marin Independent Journal; published The Waiting Room, an essay for Left Coast Writers Roadwork, and wrote various articles for The Women's Eye website. She is a Hedgebrook alumna, and a 2018-19 Affiliate Artist at The Headlands Center for the Arts. Her upcoming debut novel, The Peach Seed, is represented by Steve Ross Agency in NYC.

 

A.J. Verdelle photo courtesy of the author; Anita Gail Jones photo courtesy of the author

 

Online Event

Caleb Gayle - We Refuse to Forget (Online Event)

Wednesday, June 15, 2022 - 5:30pm

Caleb Gayle

We Refuse to Forget

Wed., June 15, 2022 • 5:30pm PT
Live Online

This event will be hosted online by Book Passage. Please contact webmaster@bookpassage.com with questions regarding online events.
 

A landmark work of untold American history that reshapes our understanding of identity, race, and belonging.

In We Refuse to Forget, award-winning journalist Caleb Gayle tells the extraordinary story of the Creek Nation, a Native tribe that two centuries ago both owned slaves and accepted Black people as full citizens. Thanks to the efforts of Creek leaders like Cow Tom, a Black Creek citizen who rose to become chief, the U.S. government recognized Creek citizenship in 1866 for its Black members. Yet this equality was shredded in the 1970s when tribal leaders revoked the citizenship of Black Creeks, even those who could trace their history back generations — even to Cow Tom himself.

Why did this happen? How was the U.S. government involved? And what are Cow Tom’s descendants and other Black Creeks doing to regain their citizenship? These are some of the questions that Gayle explores in this provocative examination of racial and ethnic identity. By delving into the history and interviewing Black Creeks who are fighting to have their citizenship reinstated, he lays bare the racism and greed at the heart of this story. We Refuse to Forget is an eye-opening account that challenges our preconceptions of identity as it shines new light on the long shadows of white supremacy and marginalization that continue to hamper progress for Black Americans.

Caleb Gayle is an award-winning journalist who writes about race and identity. A professor at Northeastern University, he is a fellow at New America, PEN America, Harvard's Radcliffe Institute of Advanced Studies, and a visiting scholar at New York University. Gayle’s writing has appeared in The New York Times Magazine, The Atlantic, The Guardian, Guernica, and other publications. The son of Jamaican immigrants, Gayle is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma, the University of Oxford, and has an MBA and a master’s in public policy, both from Harvard University. He lives in Boston.

 

Caleb Gayle photo courtesy of Jeremy Castro

 

Online Event

Michael Goldberg with Robert Duncan - Wicked Game (Online Event)

Thursday, July 21, 2022 - 5:30pm

Michael Goldberg
in conversation with Robert Duncan

Wicked Game

Thurs., July 21, 2022 • 5:30pm PT
Live Online

This event will be hosted online by Book Passage. Please contact webmaster@bookpassage.com with questions regarding online events.
 

Wicked Game: The True Story of Guitarist James Calvin Wilsey (HoZac Books) by author Michael Goldberg tells the heartbreaking story of a San Francisco legend: guitarist Jimmy Wilsey. It was Wilsey who wrote and played the guitar parts for the Chris Isaak hit "Wicked Game" and, as even Isaak has acknowledged, Wilsey was key to that song reaching #6 in the U.S. top 10 in 1991, selling millions of copies and streaming over 300 million times.

Wilsey's story is tragic. First he was in the great SF punk band the Avengers (and a star in the SF punk scene) and then worked with Isaak for 12 years. At one point he had a movie star girlfriend, was appearing on the “Tonight Show,” and touring the world with "Wicked Game" a hit in 10 countries. Sadly, Jimmy became a heroin addict and died homeless three years ago.

Within Wilsey’s story is the story of the Avengers and the SF punk scene, the story or Chris Isaak/Silvertone, the story of how  “Wicked Game” became a hit, and, really, the story of the dark side of rock & roll.

Full of over 150 images including club flyers, record covers and numerous amazing and previously unseen photos by Michael Goldberg, Hugh Brown, avant-garde artist Bruce Conner, Blondie’s Chris Stein, Ruby Ray, James Stark, Sue Brisk, Michael Zagaris, Marcus Leatherdale and Chester Simpson, and complimented with intimate interviews with past girlfriends including Claudia Summers and actress Jennifer Rubin (“Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors,” “Bad Dreams,” “The Doors,” and more).

Michael Goldberg is a journalist, novelist, and photographer. He has been interviewing and photographing musicians since he was seventeen. He was a senior writer at Rolling Stone magazine for a decade. His writing also appeared in Esquire, New Musical Express, Creem, DownBeat, New York Rocker, Trouser Press, Musician, New West, Vibe, New Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, and other publications. He was had three novels published: True Love Scars, The Flowers Lied, and Untitled. Author Simon Warner wrote, “Michael Goldberg has his finger on the pulse, his foot to the beat, his hip to the rhythm and his ears peeled for the cadences of rock & roll’s raucous jibber-jabber."

Robert Duncan is an American music critic, author and entrepreneur. Duncan is married to the artist and photographer Roni Hoffman. They have two adult children. Robert Duncan was managing editor of Creem from 1975 to 1976 and a contributor to the magazine from 1974 to 1981. Duncan also writes poetry and novels. His poems have been published in Maintenant, The Journal of Contemporary Dada Writing and Art. His first novel, Loudmouth, based in part on his experiences in music, was published on October 6, 2020, by Three Rooms Press.

 

Michael Goldberg photo courtesy of Roni Hoffman; Robert Duncan photo courtesy of the author

 

Online Event

Ryan O'Connell with Karley Sciortino - Just By Looking at Him (Online Event)

Tuesday, June 14, 2022 - 5:30pm

Ryan O'Connell
in conversation with Karley Sciortino

Just By Looking at Him

Live Online

Tues., June 14, 2022 • 5:30pm PT

This event will be hosted online by Book Passage. Please contact webmaster@bookpassage.com with questions regarding online events.
 

From the star of Peacock’s Queer as Folk and the Netflix series Special comes a darkly witty and touching novel following a gay TV writer with cerebral palsy as he fights addiction and searches for acceptance in an overwhelmingly ableist world.

Elliott appears to be living the dream as a successful TV writer with a doting boyfriend. But behind his Instagram filter of a life, he’s grappling with an intensifying alcohol addiction, he can’t seem to stop cheating on his boyfriend with various sex workers, and his cerebral palsy is making him feel like gay Shrek.

After falling down a rabbit hole of sex, drinking, and Hollywood backstabbing, Elliott decides to limp his way towards redemption. But facing your demons is easier said than done.

Candid, biting, and refreshingly real, Just by Looking at Him is an incisive commentary on gay life, a heart-centered, laugh-out-loud exploration of self, and a rare insight into life as a person with disabilities.

Ryan O’Connell is the Emmy-nominated creator, writer, and star of Netflix’s Special, which is based on his memoir, I’m Special: And Other Lies We Tell Ourselves. He’s also written for other TV shows like Will & Grace, Awkward, and Peacock’s Queer as Folk revival, which he also stars in. He lives, laughs, and loves in Los Angeles with his partner, Jonathan Parks-Ramage. 

 

Karley Sciortino is the author of Slutever, a columnist at Vogue, and host of her own VICE show.

 

Ryan O'Connell photo courtesy of Ryan Pfluger

 

Online Event

Alison Fairbrother with Susan Minot - The Catch (Online Event)

Wednesday, June 22, 2022 - 1:00pm

Alison Fairbrother
in conversation with Susan Minot

The Catch

Live Online

Wed., June 22, 2022 • 1:00pm PT

This event will be hosted online by Book Passage. Please contact webmaster@bookpassage.com with questions regarding online events.
 

A young woman searches for the truth about her father — and the secrets of her family — in this electric debut novel. 

Two years out of college, Ellie Adler has a job in journalism, an older lover, and a circle of smart friends. Her beloved father, James, who has children from three marriages, unites the family with his gentle humor and charisma, but Ellie has always believed she is her father's favorite. When he suddenly dies, she finds herself devastated by the unexpected loss. Then, at the reading of his will, she learns that instead of leaving her his prized possession — a baseball that holds emotional resonance for them both — he has left her a seemingly ridiculous, even insulting gift. Worse, he’s given the baseball to someone no one in the family has ever heard of. 

In her grief, Ellie wonders who could have possibly meant more to her father than she did. Setting out to track this person down, she learns startling information about who her father really was and who she herself is becoming. Moving, witty, and unforgettable, The Catch is a story of the gifts we’re given over the course of a lifetime, by family, friends, and strangers — the ones we want and the ones that catch us unawares.

Alison Fairbrother is an associate editor at Riverhead Books. She worked as a journalist in Washington, D.C., before getting her MFA at Stony Brook University. She lives in Brooklyn.

Susan Minot is an award-winning novelist of Why I Don't Write, short story writer, poet, and screenwriter. Her first novel, Monkeys, was published in a dozen countries and won the Prix Femina Étranger in France. Her novel Evening was a worldwide bestseller and became a major motion picture. She teaches at Stony Brook University in New York City and conducts a private writing workshop.

 

Alison Fairbrother photo courtesy of the publisher; Susan Minot photo courtesy of Jean Pagliuso

 

Online Event

Emily May and Jorge Artega - I've Got Your Back (Online Event)

Thursday, June 2, 2022 - 5:30pm

Emily May
& Jorge Artega

I've Got Your Back

Live Online

Thurs., June 2, 2022 • 5:30pm PT

This event will be hosted online by Book Passage. Please contact webmaster@bookpassage.com with questions regarding online events.
 

Right to Be’s accessible and engaging step-by-step instructional guide to safe and effective bystander intervention

Bystander intervention is simply overcoming that “freeze” instinct when you witness harassment and getting back to the very human desire to take care of one another. It’s not about being the hero, strapping on spandex, and saving the day. And it certainly isn’t about sacrificing your own safety.

From the nonprofit organization Right to Be (formerly Hollaback!), I’ve Got Your Back teaches readers the ins and outs of bystander intervention using Right to Be’s methodology: the 5D’s of bystander intervention—distract, delegate, document, delay, and direct. Each chapter of the book dives deeply into what these D’s can look like in practice, whether you are in public, online, or at work.

The rise in interest in bystander intervention comes at a moment when trust in the institutions historically responsible for keeping us safe is crumbling. However, as trust in our systems falters, trust in our own agency and our own ability to create change is rising. Perhaps for the first time we see that our actions matter. Or, at a minimum, we know our actions are the only thing we can truly control. We all have a role to play when it comes to ending hate and harassment in our communities. If you’re new to these efforts, I’ve Got Your Back will give you the skills to get started. And if you’ve been doing this work for years, this book will provide you with the language to mentor others just beginning their journey.

Jorge Arteaga’s passion for history, places, and people and his ability to plan and execute have allowed him to bring his operational skills to serve in the social justice movement. He earned his bachelor’s in American Studies from SUNY College at Old Westbury and his master’s in American Studies at The City College of New York. He is currently completing his MS in project management and operations at Southern New Hampshire University.

Emily May is an international leader in the movement to end harassment in all its forms. In 2005, at the age of 24, she cofounded Right to Be (formerly Hollaback!). May has won 11 awards for her work and been featured in more than 200 news media outlets, including People, the New York Times, and NPR. May holds a bachelor’s from New York University, a master’s from the London School of Economics, and is a Prime Movers Fellow and an Ashoka Fellow.

 

Emily May and Jorge Artega photo courtesy of Sylvie Rosocoff

 

Online Event

Norman Reedus - The Ravaged (Online Event)

Friday, May 13, 2022 - 4:00pm

Norman Reedus

The Ravaged

Live Online Signed Copies Available

Fri., May 13, 2022 • 4:00pm PT

This event will be hosted online by Book Passage. Please contact webmaster@bookpassage.com with questions regarding online events.
 

The highly anticipated debut novel from Norman Reedus, acclaimed star of The Walking Dead

This country wasn't built on good — only fought for with good intentions.

Jack's dying mother told him, Run and never look back. He spent his life amassing wealth, but after losing his family, he has no one to share it with. Alone with his demons and a backpack, he heads to South America, where people with nothing teach him what matters.

After thrashing his dog-abusing boss, Hunter learns of his father's death in a mysterious fire. Biker buddies Nugget and Itch ride with him from North Carolina to California. Stories from his father's life help ease the struggles of small-town Americans. Hunter discovers a secret past.

Seventeen-year-old Anne flees Tennessee after her older brother attacks her. She whacks him with a skillet and hops a freight to Alabama with her best friend. Living hand to mouth, they build friendships, uncovering something they never had: family.

The Ravaged is a fast-paced, up-in-your-face novel of gritty realism, exploring three different personal quests with eerily parallel outcomes.

Norman Reedus can currently be seen in the tenth season of AMC’s hit series The Walking Dead playing everyone’s favorite crossbow-wielding zombie killer Daryl Dixon.  Reedus can also be seen on AMC’s unscripted series Ride with Norman Reedus. Each hour-long episode follows Reedus and a friend touring a different city via motorcycle, checking out bike shops, tattoo parlors, bars, and local restaurants frequented by the chopper enthusiasts. Reedus’s companions range from actors to local bikers. Season four aired early 2020.  Reedus is best known for playing the role of Murphy MacManus in the cult movie The Boondock Saints, written and directed by Troy Duffy. Reedus stars opposite Sean Patrick Flanery and Willem Dafoe; he starred opposite Flanery again in the sequel, Boondock Saints 2: All Saints Day.  Additional film credits include Robert Kirkman’s sci-fi thriller Air from Sony Pictures; the indie drama Sunlight Jr., which premiered at the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival and also starred Naomi Watts and Matt Dillon; the Robert Redford directed feature The Conspirator, which chronicles the trial after the assassination of Abraham Lincoln; the sci-fi feature thriller Pandorum with Dennis Quaid and Ben Foster; the Sony feature Cadillac Records opposite Adrien Brody; Six Ways to Sunday, 8mm, Beat, Deuces Wild, Blade 2, Gossip, The Notorious Bettie Page, and American Gangster.

Reedus is also an accomplished photographer as well as a burgeoning director having directed three short films. In October 2013, he released The Sun’s Coming Up … Like a Big Bald Head: Photographs by Norman Reedus, a book of his photography.
Reedus lives in New York.

 

Norman Reedus photo by Luke Fontana

 

Online Event

Tracy Dawson with Kate Novack - Let Me Be Frank (Online Event)

Monday, May 16, 2022 - 5:30pm

Tracy Dawson
in conversation with Kate Novack

Let Me Be Frank
A Book About Women Who Dressed Like Men
to Do Shit They Weren't Supposed to Do

Live Online

Mon., May 16, 2022 • 5:30pm PT

This event will be hosted online by Book Passage. Please contact webmaster@bookpassage.com with questions regarding online events.
 

“A smart, funny journey through history that introduces us to the rule breakers who made history worth traveling through.”—Patton Oswalt

“I came up with Tracy as a fellow sketch comedian on the vomit-soaked stages of the Toronto comedy scene. And like the brilliant, resourceful, rule-breaking, damn-well-stubborn sisters in Let Me Be Frank, Tracy is someone who gets the job done, and gets it done well.”—Samantha Bee

In this entertaining and eye-opening collection, writer, actor, and feminist Tracy Dawson showcases trailblazers throughout history who disguised themselves as men and continuously broke the rules to gain access and opportunities denied them because they were women.

Let Me Be Frank illuminates with a wry warmth the incredible stories of a diverse group of women from different ethnicities and cultural backgrounds who have defied the patriarchy, refusing to allow men or the status quo to define their lives or break their spirit. An often sardonic and thoroughly impassioned homage to female ingenuity and tenacity, the women profiled in this inspiring anthology broke the rules to reach their goals and refused to take “no” for an answer. These women took matters into their own hands, dressing — sometimes literally, sometimes figuratively — as men to do what they wanted to do. This includes competing in marathons, publishing books, escaping enslavement, practicing medicine, tunneling deep in the earth as miners, taking to the seas as pirates and serving on the frontlines in the military, among many other pursuits. Not only did these women persist, many unknowingly made history and ultimately inspired later generations in doing so. This compendium is an informative and enthralling celebration of these revolutionary badasses who have changed the world and our lives.

Let Me Be Frank is filled with more than two dozen specially commissioned, full-color illustrations and hand-lettering by artist Tina Berning, whose multi-award-winning work has been published in numerous publications and anthologies worldwide, and is designed by Alex Kalman.

Actress and writer Tracy Dawson is no stranger to doing what she wants in a man’s world, having been a part of the entertainment and comedy scene for years. Tracy began on the mainstage of the world renowned Second City in Toronto. In 2009 Tracy won an emerging TV writer award at the Banff World Television Festival and was soon staffed as a writer (and later cast as a lead actor) on the Canadian comedy series, Call Me Fitz. Tracy went on to win the Gemini Award and the Canadian Screen Award for Best Lead Comedic Actress for her work opposite Jason Priestley on Fitz. Tracy was born in Ottawa, Canada and is currently based in Los Angeles where she lives with her life partner Isaac, who is a dog. 

Kate Novack is an Emmy-nominated writer, director and producer of documentary films. Her most recent film, Hysterical Girl (New York Times Op-Docs, Grasshopper Film, 2020), revisits the only major case history that Sigmund Freud produced of a female patient, and considers the corrosive legacy of his theory of hysteria, 125 years later. Hysterical Girl was shortlisted for an Academy Award and nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Writing in a documentary. New Yorker critic Richard Brody described it as "extraordinary...strikes at the very foundations of the field of psychology, and the historical failure to believe victims which has not yet been righted." Kate’s feature The Gospel According to Andre (Magnolia Pictures, 2018), about the legendary fashion editor Andre Leon Talley, was named one of the top ten Queer films of the year by Indiewire and nominated for best LGBTQ documentary of the year by the Society of LGBTQ Entertainment Critics. A former print journalist, Kate was a writer and producer on Page One: Inside the New York Times (Magnolia Pictures, Participant Media and History Films, 2011), which was nominated for two News & Documentary Emmys and a Critics Choice Award.

 

Tracy Dawson photo courtesy of Miles Schuster

 

Online Event

Robert Samuels and Toluse Olorunnipa - His Name is George Floyd (Online Event)

Thursday, May 19, 2022 - 5:30pm

Robert Samuels &
Toluse Olorunnipa

His Name is George Floyd

Online Event

Thurs., May 19, 2022 • 5:30pm PT

This event will be hosted online by Book Passage. Please contact webmaster@bookpassage.com with questions regarding online events.
 

A landmark biography by two prizewinning Washington Post reporters that reveals how systemic racism shaped George Floyd's life and legacy — from his family’s roots in the tobacco fields of North Carolina, to ongoing inequality in housing, education, health care, criminal justice, and policing — telling the singular story of how one man’s tragic experience brought about a global movement for change.

The events of that day are now tragically familiar: on May 25, 2020, George Floyd became the latest Black person to die at the hands of the police, murdered outside of a Minneapolis convenience store by white officer Derek Chauvin. The video recording of his death set off the largest protest movement in the history of the United States, awakening millions to the pervasiveness of racial injustice. But long before his face was painted onto countless murals and his name became synonymous with civil rights, Floyd was a father, partner, athlete, and friend who constantly strove for a better life.

His Name Is George Floyd tells the story of a beloved figure from Houston's housing projects as he faced the stifling systemic pressures that come with being a Black man in America. Placing his narrative within the context of the country's enduring legacy of institutional racism, this deeply reported account examines Floyd's family roots in slavery and sharecropping, the segregation of his schools, the overpolicing of his community amid a wave of mass incarceration, and the callous disregard toward his struggle with addiction — putting today's inequality into uniquely human terms. Drawing upon hundreds of interviews with Floyd's closest friends and family, his elementary school teachers and varsity coaches, civil rights icons, and those in the highest seats of political power, Washington Post reporters Robert Samuels and Toluse Olorunnipa offer a poignant and moving exploration of George Floyd’s America, revealing how a man who simply wanted to breathe ended up touching the world.

Robert Samuels is a national political enterprise reporter for The Washington Post who focuses on the intersection of politics, policy, and people. He previously wrote stories about life in the District for the Post’s social issues team. Samuels joined the Post in 2011 after spending nearly five years working at the Miami Herald.   

Toluse Olorunnipa is a political enterprise and investigations reporter for The Washington Post. He joined the Post in 2019 and previously covered the White House. Before that, he spent five years at Bloomberg, where he reported on politics and policy from Washington and Florida.

 

Robert Samuels photo courtesy of the author; Toluse Olorunnipa photo courtesy of Lori Hoffman

 

Online Event

Mark Kurlansky - The Importance of Not Being Ernest (Online Event)

Monday, June 13, 2022 - 5:00pm

Mark Kurlansky

The Importance of Not Being Ernest

Online Event

Monday., June 13, 2022 • 5:00pm PT

This event will be hosted live online and requires a free registration to attend. Please contact webmaster@bookpassage.com with questions regarding online events.
 

Discover Hemingway's biography through the eyes of a fellow author and journalist. New York Times bestselling author of Salt, Mark Kurlansky turns his historical eye to the life of Ernest Hemingway. Sometimes funny, sometimes sad, The Importance of Not Being Ernest shows the huge shadow Hemingway casts.

The perfect gift for writers. By a series of coincidences, Mark Kurlansky's life has always been intertwined with Ernest Hemingway's legend, starting with being in Idaho the day of Hemingway's death. The Importance of Not Being Ernest explores the intersections between Hemingway's and Kurlansky's lives, resulting in creative accounts of two inspiring writing careers. Travel the world with Mark Kurlansky and Ernest Hemingway in this personal memoir, where Kurlansky details his ten years in Paris and his time as a journalist in Spain--both cities important to Hemingway's adventurous life and prolific writing.

Key West, Havana, and Chicago. Get to know the extraordinary people he met there--those who had also fallen under the Hemingway spell, including a Vietnam veteran suffering from the same syndrome the author did, two winners of the Key West Hemingway look-alike contest, and the man in Idaho who took Hemingway hunting and fishing.

In this unique gift for writers, find:

  • A memoir full of entertaining and illuminative stories
  • Little-known historical facts about Hemingway's life
  • Anecdotes about those who suffer from what the Kurlansky calls "hemitis"

Mark Kurlansky is the New York Times bestselling author of Milk!, Havana, Paper, The Big Oyster, 1968, Salt, The Basque History of the World, Cod, and Salmon, among other titles. He has received the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, Bon Appétit's Food Writer of the Year Award, the James Beard Award, and the Glenfiddich Award. He lives in New York City. www.markkurlansky.com

 

Mark Kurlansky photo courtesy of GL Portrait / Alamy Stock Photo

 

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