The Last Day (3 Cassettes)

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The final week of 1999 draws to a close. Billions prepare for the inevitable letdown. Billions more hold their breath. Will the wild fantasies of New Age zealots be realized and the world we know end? Will the dawn of a new era be marked by profound occurrences? Or will it be just another New Year's Eve turning into one more New Year's Day? Suddenly and terrifyingly, everyone's question is answered. On Christmas Eve, fiery destruction rains down on a secret scientific installation in the Negev desert. Then, at ...
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Overview

The final week of 1999 draws to a close. Billions prepare for the inevitable letdown. Billions more hold their breath. Will the wild fantasies of New Age zealots be realized and the world we know end? Will the dawn of a new era be marked by profound occurrences? Or will it be just another New Year's Eve turning into one more New Year's Day? Suddenly and terrifyingly, everyone's question is answered. On Christmas Eve, fiery destruction rains down on a secret scientific installation in the Negev desert. Then, at midnight on New Year's Eve, a beautiful young woman appears, displaying a strange and awesome gift.
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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The Barnes & Noble Review

Christmas Eve, 1999. A comet, satellite, or perhaps the finger of God, rends the night sky above Israel and rains fiery destruction on a top-secret military research facility in the Negev. Ony one mute and naked survivor struggles from the ruins in the aftermath of the explosion, then vanishes into the desert unnoticed. Drawn by the rumor of a Jordanian SCUD attack, a World News Network team producing a Millennium Eve special in Jerusalem races to the scene and stumbles upon the story of their lives, involving veteran reporter Jonathan Feldman and his cameraman Breck Hunter in perhaps the greatest story ever told.

Throughout the final year of the century, messianic sects have descended upon the great religious centers of Rome, Jerusalem, and Salt Lake City to await the coming of the millennium, convinced that the Last Days are at hand. Now, in the fulfillment of prophesy, at the stroke of midnight, New Year's Eve, a beautiful and mysterious young woman appears on the steps of the ancient Israelite Temple of the Messiah just as a violent earthquake rocks Jerusalem and sets off aftershocks felt even in the Vatican. By a stroke of purest luck, WNN has it all on videotape.

As a world audience primed for spectacle clamors for more, Feldman and Hunter follow the elusive figure as she appears throughout "Apocalypse Central," proclaiming a new gospel of the apotheosis to Christian, Muslim, and Jew alike. Overnight, Jeza, as she calls herself, has become a worldwide phenomenon, occasioning a summit meeting of the world's religious leaders and spawning a brisk trade inT-shirts,ashtrays, and other novelties bearing her image. But despite reports of miracles, fulfillment of biblical prophecy, and even the announcement of an 11th commandment ("Thou shall honor woman as thy equal; and thou shall cherish her in unity with thy fellow man"), the question remains: Is Jeza imitating or emulating Christ? Is she messiah, antichrist, or something even more sinister — a biotech experiment gone tragically wrong?

Deftly incorporating subplots that include Vatican conspiracies, IDF assassination squads, cutting-edge scientific speculation, and the doomsday prophesy of the Last Secret of Fatima, Glenn Kleier's cleverly exploits the growing fascination with the millennium and eschatology, provoking impassioned questions about our most cherished beliefs — and delivering a suspenseful thriller of the highest order.

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
A millennial thriller that's as cranky as it is intense, Kleier's first novel grinds a sharp ax against organized religion, particularly Roman Catholicism, as it imagines the arising of a possible global messiah. Kleier narrates primarily through the viewpoint of a cable-TV reporter who witnesses many of the novel's bizarre events. On December 24, 1999, a meteor strikes a secret Israeli defense facility, freeing one of the site's experimentsJeza, a beautiful woman who is an artificially gestated clone and whose unsurpassed intelligence may arise from computer chips implanted in her brain. Days later, Jeza performs a miracle in Bethlehem; shortly thereafter, she delivers her "New Beatitudes" ("Blessed are you who are tolerant, for you shall attain Unity") to a worldwide TV audience. Within months, the world teeters on the brink of anarchy, torn between pro- and anti-Jeza forces. The latter are spearheaded by the Vatican, for Jeza's apocalyptic message includes the dismantling of all churches. If Kleier's prose, particularly his dialogue, lacks subtlety, his melodramatic story will have readers racing through the narrative with its many plot twistspolitical, scientific and theological. A warm and fuzzy conclusion can't mask the novel's bombast and bad taste, however. Kleier's portrayal of the Vatican as a venal cabal and of the pope as a bumbler, his swipes at Protestantism and Islam, his use of the Lubavitcher Rebbe to endorse Jeza's sacred status, his employment of the maybe-messiah as a mouthpiece for politically correct religion (feminist, pro-choice, anticlerical)all make this work as much an offensive rant as an entertaining read. 500,000 first printing; film rights to Columbia/TriStar; Time Warner audio; foreign rights sold in the U.K., the Netherlands, Italy, Spain and Portugal. (Nov.)
Library Journal
A combination of scientific thriller, religious satire, and New Age mysticism, this debut novel offers a view of what might happen as the end of the millennium approaches. At a remote research facility in the Negev Desert, a meteor wreaks massive destruction. Meanwhile, at midnight on New Year's Eve, 1999, in Jerusalem, a young and mysterious woman appears who seems to have a powerful gift. She calls herself Jeza, and soon everyone wonders whether she is a prophetess, the Messiah, or the Antichrist. On hand is Jon Feldman, a skeptical reporter for the World News Network. Beset by his own doubts and lack of strong faith, Feldman is nevertheless fascinated and attracted by the mysterious Jeza. Is she truly a manifestation of God, or is she simply the result of a bizarre experiment of bioengineering? Feldman won't rest until he finds out the truth. Kleier's novel offers a view of how organized religion would react to such a threat. Though the prose is pedestrian and the dialog often overwrought, the story is so well paced that most readers will perhaps forgive the other deficiencies. For large fiction collections.Dean James, Murder by the Book, Houston, Tex.
From The Critics
This book is so full of hot topics, readers might burn their fingers turning pages. It's the eve of the millennium, things are getting very hyper, and plenty of folk are flocking to the Holy Land just in case the world is going to end. Jon Feldman, a star reporter for WNN, a cable news outlet, is on the job, but he is not prepared for the story that begins on Christmas Day, when a powerful and beautiful young woman steps out of the Negev Desert and proclaims herself the new messiah. Her name is Jeza and her gospel includes an admonishment to abolish all organized religions--a position that causes the considerable power of the Catholic Church to be turned against her, beginning a series of events that just may lead to Armageddon. Kleier, a first-time author, doesn't miss a beat in this story, capturing all the craziness of the last decade of the twentieth century, firing it with the latest scientific advancements (like cloning), and wrapping it all with the gauze of mysticism. Complex plotting seems smooth as silk here, and the idea of using a CNN-style reporter as the messiah's confidant is a perfect touch for today's media-crazy world. The question of whether the enigmatic Jeza is the daughter of God or the anti-Christ engages everyone from the pope to the president, and it will keep readers enthralled until the very end. Expect to hear a lot about a new subgenre called the "millennial thriller" in the next couple of years, but don't expect to find one anybetter than this. --Ilene Cooper
Kirkus Reviews
An impressively imagined debut offers a devilishly cunning speculation on how a sinful world might greet news of a messiah's appearance come the millennium.

Jerusalem-based WNN-TV correspondent John Feldman gets appreciably more than he ever bargained for on New Year's Eve, 1999. Expecting to provide only cursory coverage of local observances, the journalist and his cameraman, Breck Hunter, wind up investigating the mysterious destruction of a hush-hush Israel Defense Force (IDF) lab in the Negev Desert. The sole survivor of this cataclysm is an ethereal young woman called Jeza, whom millennarian groups throughout the world soon hail as their long- awaited redeemer. Spouting gnomic parables, citing a gospel known as Apotheosis (from the so-called "Newest" Testament), and performing the occasional miracle, the arriviste divinity travels the holy lands of the Middle East, urging ever larger congregations of Christians, Jews, and Muslims to forsake the distractive trappings of formal liturgies. With logistical assistance from Feldman's ratings-obsessed network, the deity is soon able to present her provocative message (fiercely resisted by established religions) to a wider world from forums in Salt Lake City, the Vatican, and Washington. Meanwhile, word leaks out that the IDF facility was engaged in genetic engineering projects, which could make Jeza a robot with artificial intelligence of a very high order rather than anyone's savior. During the Lenten season, hopes for peace on earth evanesce as Armageddon-scale violence racks key venues, and the Antichrist or True Prophetess is martyred at the close of a Good Friday sermon before the Wailing Wall. While cooler heads in Rome ponder, IDF renegades, die-hard ecclesiastics, and others with apocalyptic axes to grind vie to ensure—or abort—Jeza's resurrection on Easter morning.

Deliciously wicked entertainment that combines biotech with theological arcana to mount an effective (and often offensive) assault upon churches militant, affluent, and complacent.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781570425493
  • Publisher: Hachette Audio
  • Publication date: 12/1/1997
  • Format: Cassette
  • Edition description: Abridged, 4 Cassettes, 6 hours
  • Product dimensions: 4.12 (w) x 6.75 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Glenn Kleier
Glenn Kleier

Glenn Kleier is the former co-founder and president of a national marketing and communications firm who now pursues his passion for writing full-time. He is the author of the internationally acclaimed thriller, The Last Day. He makes his home in Louisville, Kentucky.

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Read an Excerpt

An Excerpt from The Last Day

WNN news bureau, Jerusalem, Israel
11:15 A.M., Wednesday, January 5, 2000

The rumors had been filtering in since early morning, and by now Bollinger was convinced they were accurate. Direct from the millenarian grapevine, it was said that the Messiah would finally be making a long-awaited public appearance. Having fasted and meditated for four days and nights in the deserts north of Jericho, the Messiah would give an address near the resort town of Tiberias, on the western shore of the Sea of Galilee. Tomorrow morning, at dawn. Feldman, Hunter, Erin Cross and a production crew were dispatched immediately to Tiberias by WNN helicopter to prepare for whatever eventualities might develop. Sullivan, Bollinger, Cissy, Robert Filson and more crew were to fly up in a second helicopter later to join them.

. . .
Mount of the Beatitudes, Israel
6:21 A.M., Thursday, January 6, 2000

The massive audience was absolutely immobilized by the ethereal scene, and remained so for a full sixty seconds while the celestial music crescendoed to its finale.

The slender Messiah was dressed in a loose, hooded, full-length white robe, trimmed with red and purple piping. The head was bowed, the face completely shadowed by the hood in the dawning sunlight behind.

Feldman, the TV crew, and the millions of breathless spectators watched, spellbound, as the mysterious form appeared to slowly unfurl itself. The head tilted back. The slim arms rose steadily from its side, upward to the sky. The sleeves slid gracefully down to unveil thin, opalescent arms. Arms that extended to small, clenched fists which petaled open to display fine, outstretched, alabaster fingers.

And at last the hood dropped away, revealing an unearthly, radiant, alluring, upturned face of an angel. Innocent, unpretentious, childlike and beautiful. Yet purposeful and wise. The eyes were closed and the mouth opened wide, exposing straight and perfectly white teeth.

Feldman was taken aback, then charmed to realize that this transfixing, commanding display had been, in actuality, nothing more than an early morning stretch and yawn. Although, because of the contrast of sunlight and shadows, and the distance of the crowd, Feldman doubted anyone but he could tell.

While this was most certainly the same arresting face Feldman had seen in the crude Millennium Eve video, its impact on him now was entirely different. There was no semblance of the pain, rage or anguish that had exuded from the dark TV monitor. Perhaps it was the inexactness of the computer enhancement, but this face had none of the intensity. It even appeared less angular now. Softened. Sweetened.

Yet, it had lost none of the otherworldliness that gave it its divinity. This was an amazing creature. The skin was so completely smooth, unblemished and literally vibrant in its pure, radiant whiteness. The face was perfect in its symmetry, with large, wide-set dark eyes rimmed with long black lashes. The jawline was chiseled, firm. The nose prominent, Roman-godly. Entirely appropriate.

The only physical imperfection to mar this compelling, flawless visage was the appearance of odd red welts that were visible in small, scalped patches in the Messiah's unruly, raven hair. A very bad haircut.

But if this were indeed the face of a Messiah, God had played a cruel joke on His anointed one. This strange and surreal appearance wasn't that of a boy, but of a young woman. And when Feldman heard her speak, he was certain of it.

Looking over the crowd, the Messiah called out in a clear, engrossing, authoritative, but entirely feminine voice: "Vasheim aboteinu tovu lisanecha," she announced in perfect Hebrew, which Feldman did not comprehend.

"Bism Elah atty laka," she intoned in perfect Arabic, which was also lost on the reporter.

"In the Name of the Father, I come to you," she said in perfect English, and Feldman realized the Messiah was repeating the same phrases in a variety of languages.

"Au Nom de Dieu notre Père, je viens à vous," she continued in French.

She repeated the process in German, Spanish, Russian, Chinese, Italian and Japanese, picking up the pace in a rhythmic chant that physically moved the crowd. Ten separate languages in all, recorded on tape, and her accent, in each instance, was perfect. Finishing one circuit, the Messiah began a new phrase, starting the rhythmic translation process all over again. She punctuated her oration with decisive movements of her arms and body.

The world received its first sermon from the new prophetess. A short speech that came to be known as the New Beatitudes:

In the name of the Father, I come to you.

In the name of Truth, I come to you.

In the name of Revelation, I come to you.


Blessed are you who listen, for you shall understand.

Blessed are you who see, for the New Light shall shine upon you.

Blessed are you who resist convention for the sake of righteousness, for you shall be vindicated.

Blessed are you who seek the Answer within you, for you shall know the mind of God.

Blessed are you who defy the powerful in My name, for you shall be called courageous.

Blessed are you who are selfless, for your compensation shall be immeasurable.

Blessed are you who are tolerant, for you shall attain Unity.

Blessed are you who safeguard the defenseless, for you shall gain life everlasting.

Blessed are the secure of heart, for you shall find comfort in yourself

Rejoice and exult, because your reward is great in heaven; for so did they persecute the prophets who came before. (Apotheosis 4:6-19)

There was one point near the end where the Messiah, in her sweeping scope of the crowd, brought her eyes to rest on Feldman's. Only for an instant, only in passing, but there was a connect. And even in the briefest of glances, her dark, serene, multihued blue eyes penetrated him unnervingly.

He felt simultaneously dizzy, confused and invaded. But he had no opportunity to reflect on the experience. The Messiah's hands rose to the heavens as if bestowing a blessing upon the crowd. And then the slender figure turned abruptly, arms dropping, and calmly descended the steps as the crowd erupted.

The massive audience was in ecstasy. Laughing, crying, praying, fully sated and taken with the rapture of this religious moment. Feldman was fearful that at any second the insensate, joyous mob would surge forward and shock divine sense into some of the more unfortunate faithful near the electric fence, providing Hunter with a little anecdotal footage. But the assembly remained respectful of itself and there was never any danger.

Feldman believed that most of the crowd had been prepared from the onset to accept this Messiah figure as their Savior, regardless of her newly revealed sex. That she did such an effective job surpassing expectations, however, was what sent her audience into this prolonged state of euphoria.

But not all her audience. There were some here who did not come to welcome a new religious icon. Particularly a female one. And they left this encounter with skepticism, scorn and displeasure.

Yet, to all who personally witnessed this unprecedented event, there was no denial that something very extraordinary had happened here.


Reprinted from THE LAST DAY by Glenn Kleier. Copyright © 1997 by Glenn Kleier. Published by arrangement with Warner Books, Inc., New York, New York, U.S.A. All rights reserved.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 18 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 27 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 11, 2012

    Highly recommend - you MUST read this

    This was recommeded by a friend, so I read it. BOY it was just fantastic! Extremely well written and the characters are "real". This is exacely what would happen in this particular situation!!! If you want to know what it wopuld be like if the Messiah came today, you must read this book!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 9, 2011

    Abridged, but excellent!

    Rene Auberjonois does a superb job--as does Carrie Gordon (voice of female messiah).

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 9, 2009

    Interesting

    The Last Day was very interesting. I didn't want to put it down. The ending was abrubt though. I would recommend this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 6, 2007

    Poorly Done

    Badly written and over the top melodrama wastes a great premise. Preachy, silly, cardboard characters with a plot out of a comic book. Just read The Da Vinci Code again and skip this one.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 21, 2005

    Absolutely Great

    I really enjoyed this book. It moved me in so many different directions, it made you think and examine your own personal beliefs. This is a book that would inspire a great deal of people and I plan on telling all my friends that this is a 'must read'.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 29, 2002

    an amazing read you won't believe!

    great stuff. REALLY makes you think. told in a sort of news headline setup at first. delves into religious areas no one has dared. but, not a 'religious' story (ala left behind). totally engrossing. great characters....i gave this to my dad and he finished it in 2 days...couldn't put it down. do yourself a favor...get this book!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 31, 2001

    Can't wait for his next book

    This was an absolutely amazing story. Words cannot describe the feeling that you just cannot put this book down. Not only is the storyline novel (at least I have never read one like this before), but the author involved the reader in the lives of the characters to the extent that you truly cared about Feldman, Hunter, Jeza, etc.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 14, 2001

    A head spinner

    This book really had me on the edge of my seat. Didn't know where it was going at any given time, it just kept turning and twisting and getting more nerve-racking every page. Can't say enough about it. It you like suspense and scary but thought provoking books, this is not to be missed, the best read I've come across in years.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 28, 2001

    THE LAST DAY?

    this is a very powerful, extremely moving story of a realistic approach to a biblical subject ¿the second coming of the Messiah¿. Courageous in the way it sets against old doctrines of all known religions! Especially against the ¿Roman Catholic Church¿! Giving food for thought on how we as part of ¿mankind¿ should act and react with one another. Inspired, it touches not just the heart but the very core of the reader who comes to ask him/herself just where he or she stands in ¿GOD¿S PLAN¿ for mankind! Once past the first few chapters, this story will hardly let you stop reading, until you finish the final chapter! EXCELLENT, ENGROSSING, COMMENDABLE!!! Similar in theme to ¿FIRE¿ by Alan Rodgers but more commanding by it¿s comparison to the ¿Old¿ and ¿New Testament¿ I¿d give this book 10 stars!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 7, 2001

    Interesting

    I found this to be a good read. Chapters were of varying length, and almost always ended in such a way that made it difficult to put down the book. The only thing that bothered me was the obvious contempt in which the author holds organized religion. I would guess that the author had an upbringing in which religion was forced on him, and as a result is hostile toward Christianity as an established religion. However, it also carried the message of belief in a Supreme Being. My guess is that the author is a Deist trying to encourage others to feel likewise.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 4, 2001

    Interesting, good read - Well worth $5

    I recently finished the Left Behind Series and was looking for somehting that moved a bit quicker. The Last Day offered a new twist on potenital messiah theories.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 8, 2001

    Radical!

    Finally, somebody who isn't afraid to tell the Emperor he's naked! This book rocks the old religious institutions to their foundations. A superb suspense story that leaves you with lots to think about.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 9, 2000

    CANNOT COMPARE TO LEFT BEHIND SERIES

    I think the author must be trying to capture some of the Left Behind readers with this book topic, but 'The Last Day' just cannot compare to the Left Behind books. The main reason it is lacking isn't for lack of a story line. It is lacking because it isn't based on what the Bible says will really happen at the end of time. I hope the author reads the book of Revelations and then tries to write on this topic again. It might be worth reading then.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 17, 2000

    The best novel on this topic, period.

    No other title I've ever read on this thrilling topic compares with this novel. Not Stephen King's THE STAND, and certainly NONE of the LEFT BEHIND series, which are true drivel. THE LAST DAY stands alone as the definitive tale of this supernatural subject--brilliantly written and technically superb. This is as scary and real as it can get, readers, and if you've not read it, I advise you not to read any review that reveal the story line. Just pick up a copy, find yourself some solitude, and get ready to be transported into a very provocative realm.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 1, 2000

    Take a bow, Mr. Kleier

    Mr. Kleier, you have achieved a rare event with this book--combining fact with fantasy to deliver profound insights into man's eternal struggle with man over God. This novel is a classic that deserves wide readership and discussion. My congratulations!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 5, 2000

    This is a superbly written novel

    Can't remember when I've read a richer, more satsifying novel than this. It has it all, a deep and intriguing mystery, appealing hero, truly extraordinary central figures (VERY fascinating) and huge suspense & thrills. This is as good at they come, so pick a day when you won't be disturbed and curl up with this memorable and exciting story.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 6, 2000

    The Last Day is the First Day for Brotherly Love

    All the details are there for a Messiah...to be compassionate, to share, to die and be risen again in this very same story. But after all, aren't the same principles available to US if we practice 'Love your brother' as a Messiah would do?? My journey and my heart has been transformed by words written in this book, The Last Day, don't let time fly by without one good read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 6, 2000

    Intriguing

    It was a very well written story. A great deal of research went into the book. It held my interest wondering how it would turn out in the end. I truly enjoyed it. Looking forward to the next book written by Glenn Kleier.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 9, 2000

    Wonderful...

    I am a Pagan, and was skeptical when starting this book. But I found it to be a quite refreshing view, perhaps what religion ought be in this society. Many different levels to read it on.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 5, 2000

    Last Day

    I started this novel highly skeptical and ended up with a smile on my face. This is really quite a clever book. There is far more going on underneath the surface than I think many readers suspect. But even if you're not into all the intrigue and innuendo, this is still a well done suspense/mystery. It will keep your attention and interest all the way through, guaranteed.

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