The Blossom Sisters

( 23 )

Overview

In a richly rewarding novel filled with unforgettable characters, #1 New York Times bestselling author Fern Michaels explores the enduring bonds of family as one man loses everything--only to find the freedom to create a bold new life. . .

Gus Hollister owes all his success to his feisty grandmother, Rose, and he knows it. It was Rose and her two sisters, Iris and Violet, who raised Gus, sent him to the best schools, and helped him start his ...

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The Blossom Sisters

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Overview

In a richly rewarding novel filled with unforgettable characters, #1 New York Times bestselling author Fern Michaels explores the enduring bonds of family as one man loses everything--only to find the freedom to create a bold new life. . .

Gus Hollister owes all his success to his feisty grandmother, Rose, and he knows it. It was Rose and her two sisters, Iris and Violet, who raised Gus, sent him to the best schools, and helped him start his own accounting business. Rose even bought the house Gus lives in with his wife, Elaine.

But now, Gus stands to lose everything--his home, his car, and his business. Worse, he's alienated his beloved grandma, who tried to warn him about Elaine's greedy, gold-digging ways. Gus, blinded by infatuation, refused to listen, and now Elaine has locked him out of the house he was foolish enough to put in her name.

Heartsick and remorseful, Gus returns to Rose's Virginia farmhouse seeking shelter. But it won't be easy to make amends. Despite their pretty floral names, there's nothing delicate about the Blossom sisters. Unbeknownst to Gus, they've also been running a very lucrative business from home and don't want interference. Yet family and forgiveness go hand in hand, and Gus isn't giving up.

With the help of close friends, new associates, and some very sprightly ladies, Gus begins to repair the damage he's done and help the residents of Blossom Farm begin the next phase of their business. He might even be finding the courage to love again. Because no matter how daunting starting over can be, the results can surpass your wildest expectations--especially when the Blossom sisters are in your corner. . .

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal - Audio
Evicted from his house and served with divorce papers by his greedy soon-to-be-ex-wife, Elaine, Gus Hollister returns to his childhood home. But when he arrives, he finds that he has much fence-mending to do before his grandmother Rose and her sisters, Violet and Iris, are willing to welcome him back into the fold. His relatives had tried to warn him against marrying Elaine, but he didn’t listen and ended up alienating the women who’d raised him. Now they’re running a lucrative business out of their home and are not sure they want Gus’s interference. This story of redemption, forgiveness, and fresh starts will enthrall all listeners. Jim Crawford’s vocal range and timbre enable him to differentiate clearly among multiple female and male characters.

Verdict Will be of interest to Michaels’s fans and those who enjoy redemptive family stories.—Laurie Selwyn, formerly with Grayson Cty. Law Lib., Sherman, TX
(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Kirkus Reviews
When Gus Hollister's gold-digger wife throws him out, he works to re-establish ties with his grandmother and great-aunts, whom he's ignored since his marriage and who have a few secrets of their own. CPA Gus Hollister is blindsided on the last day of tax season when wife, Elaine, demands a divorce, forcing him out of his own house, which his grandmother paid for. Since their marriage, Elaine has convinced him to ignore his grandmother and her two sisters, the women who raised him and whom he loves more than anyone in the world. Now he must work to get back in their good graces, and in the process, he'll find out that those ladies and a posse of local seniors have started local and online businesses selling a spectrum of interesting, varied products. Elaine, the gold digger, expects to take him for everything he's worth, including his house, his car, half his business and even his inheritance. Lucky for Gus, he's an all-round-good guy no one can stay mad at--oh, and that he has a world-famous, billionaire hedge fund manager as a best friend, who is willing to fund his divorce attorney--the best ever, of course--and a full firm of private investigators. And how fortunate that Elaine is not only a bona fide gold digger (a term used repeatedly throughout the text), but also a practicing high priestess of witchcraft with a long background of deception, shrewish behavior and all-round-villainess tendencies. (And how unfortunate that Gus wouldn't listen to all of his relatives and friends when they told him not to marry her.) Not to worry, though, Elaine has her next mark in sight, and Gus is just lucky enough that she'll move on to the next guy and uncharacteristically decide to cut her losses and legal property rights and leave Gus alone. Meanwhile, Gus will help his grandmother and friends streamline their operation, and maybe he'll even fall in love. A cute concept undercut by awkward writing, inconsistent, simplistic characterization and too many implausibilities to allow us to take the book or the ending seriously.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781455812837
  • Publisher: Brilliance Audio
  • Publication date: 4/1/2014
  • Format: CD
  • Edition description: Abridged
  • Sales rank: 906,424
  • Product dimensions: 5.00 (w) x 5.50 (h) x 0.37 (d)

Meet the Author

Fern Michaels

Fern Michaels is the USA Today and New York Times bestselling author of The Sisterhood and Godmothers Series, Fancy Dancer, Tuesday’s Child, Betrayal, Southern Comfort, Return to Sender, Mr. and Miss Anonymous, and dozens of other novels and novellas. There are over seventy-five million copies of her books in print. Beyond her writing, Fern Michaels has a passion for giving back to her community, and has built and funded several large day-care centers in her hometown, and has outfitted police dogs across the country with special bulletproof vests. Originally from Pennsylvania and New Jersey, Michaels now resides near Charleston, South Carolina.

Biography

Born Mary Ruth Kuczkir in Hastings, Pennsylvania, Fern Michaels was married and the mother of five before she embarked on her long, successful writing career – a career that began with something midway between a challenge and a command. When her youngest child went off to kindergarten, Michaels's husband imperiously ordered her (in just so many words) to get off her ass and get a job. Long years in the domestic trenches had left her short on marketable skills, so she decided trade off her lifelong love of reading and write a book. Just like that. The domineering, unsupportive husband is history. And Michaels has gone on to pen bestselling romance after bestselling romance. Just like that..

With typical modesty, Michaels does not claim to be a great writer; however, she admits proudly to being a born storyteller. Her bulging bookshelf proves she is all over the map, producing with equal facility hot historicals, lighthearted contemporary capers, adrenaline-laced thrillers, and heartwarming tales of family and friendship. She is especially adept at writing stories about women who prevail in hard times – a reflection, perhaps, of her own struggles in her marriage and early career.

Raised to believe that the fortunate in life have an obligation to give back, Michaels devotes a lot of time to philanthropic concerns. She has established a foundation that grants four-year scholarships to needy students and has set up pre-schools and daycare centers for single mothers. She is also an avid animal lover and has been known to own as many as five dogs at a time.

In 1993, Michaels picked up stakes and moved from her home in New Jersey to a 300-year-old plantation house in Charleston, South Carolina. She and the dogs share the house amicably with a friendly ghost whom Fern has dubbed Mary Margaret. In addition to stopping clocks and moving pillows from room to room, Mary Margaret has been known to occasionally leave flowers on Michaels's nightstand!

Good To Know

Michaels confesses in our interview: "I'm a junk food junkie and a chocoholic. My desk drawers have more junk food in them than paper and pens. I chomp and chew all day long. At night I get up and eat Marshmallow Fluff right out of the jar. In between eating, I write."

Her first "sort of, kind of job" was in market research. Michaels recounts the gig's low-point in our interview: "I had a partner and we were testing a new pressurized drain cleaner. All you had to do was put this can in the drain, squeeze and supposedly the drain would open right up. It did, all right.

"The whole wall collapsed, and stuff that was in there for a hundred years flew everywhere. The lady didn't tell us the drain backed up to her kitchen drain and disposal. The company didn't care that we smelled like a sewer or that our clothes were ruined. The lady got a new bathroom, and we both got fired."

Michaels reveals some of her sources of inspiration: "Inspiration comes from everywhere. The title for Finders Keepers came from a cartoon with two chipmunks that my grandson was watching. I had a title but no story. I finally came up with one to fit that wonderful title.

"Names for characters sometime come from television. I had a character named Metaxis which is odd to begin with. There is a news anchor on T.V. who has that same last name. Sometimes it will just be a word someone says in passing, something I read or saw. There's no rhyme or reason to it. It's almost like, okay, I need something here, stay alert and it will happen."

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    1. Also Known As:
      Mary Kuczkir
    2. Hometown:
      Summerville, South Carolina
    1. Education:
      High School

Read an Excerpt

The Blossom Sisters


By FERN MICHAELS

KENSINGTON PUBLISHING CORP.

Copyright © 2013MRK Productions
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-0-7582-8671-0


Excerpt

CHAPTER 1

Gus hollister couldn't remember when he'd been so tired as he closed and locked the doors of his CPA firm. Well, yes, actually he could remember. It was last year at exactly the same time, April 16, the last day of that year's tax season. Not that it was totally over; he still had tons of stuff to do, extensions to file, but he'd made his deadline, all clients had their records, and he was going home. If only it were to a home-cooked meal and several glasses of good wine. Like that was really going to happen. But he was simply too tired to care whether he ate or not.

Instead of taking the elevator, Gus trudged down the three flights of stairs and out to the small parking lot. Exercise these days was wherever he could find it. He winced at the lemon yellow Volkswagen Beetle that was his transportation for the day. His wife had taken his Porsche, and he was stuck with this tin can. If only he were a contortionist, which he wasn't. Gus clicked the remote and opened the door. After tossing his heavy briefcase on the passenger-side seat, he struggled to get his six-foot-four-inch frame into the small car. He hated this car. Really hated it. He inserted the key in the ignition, then lowered the windows and stared out at the dark night, an anxiousness, which had nothing to do with taxes and the long days and nights he'd been putting in, settling between his shoulders.

For some reason, he didn't think it would be so dark, but then he remembered that they had turned the clocks ahead a few weeks back. Regardless, it wasn't supposed to be dark at eight-thirty at night, was it? But he couldn't bring himself to care about that, either.

He was almost too tired to turn the key in the ignition, so he just sat for a moment, looking out across the small parking lot to the building his grandmother had helped him buy. A really good investment, she'd said, and she was right. He rented out the two top floors to other businessmen, and the rent money he received covered the mortgage and gave him a few hundred dollars toward his cash flow every month. He owed everything he had in life to his feisty grandmother Rose. Everything. And they were estranged at this point in time because of his wife, Elaine. He wanted to cry at the turn his life had taken in the last year. He banged the steering wheel just to vent before he started the Beetle, put it in gear, and roared out of the parking lot at forty miles an hour.

Thirty-five minutes later, Gus untangled himself from the Beetle, a feat requiring extraordinary concentration and agility. Then he danced around, trying to work the kinks out of his body. The Beetle belonged to his wife. She looked good in it. He looked stupid and out of place sitting behind the wheel.

Today, Elaine had been out job hunting, and she wanted to make an impression, so she'd asked him if she could borrow his Porsche. Every bone and nerve in his body had screamed out no, no, no, but in the end, he had handed her the keys. It was just too hard to say no to Elaine, because he loved her so much. Especially when she kissed him so hard he was sure she'd suck the tonsils right out of his throat. When that happened, he could deny her nothing, not even his beloved Porsche.

Elaine had passed the bar exam six months earlier and was looking for gainful employment. Or so she said. For six months now, she'd been looking for a job. Citing the economy, she'd told him that all the law firms wanted were slaves, not a qualified lawyer who had graduated at the top of her class. That was the reason she hadn't been hired. Or so she said. She hadn't even been called back for a second interview by any of the firms. Or so she said.

Sometimes he doubted her and instantly hated himself for his uncharitable thoughts, thoughts that had been coming more and more frequently of late. His gut was telling him that something was wrong; he just couldn't put his finger on what that something was.

Gus reached across the seat for his briefcase, then closed and locked the Beetle. God, I'm tired. No one in the whole world could or would be happier than he when today, April 16, turned into tomorrow, April 17. He was a CPA, a damned good one if he did say so himself, and he had been working round the clock since January 1 to meet his clients' needs. He'd made a lot of them happy and a few of them sad when he pointed to the bottom line that said, REFUND or PAY THIS AMOUNT!

Gus walked across the driveway, wondering where Elaine was. It was nine fifty-five, and she wasn't home. The jittery feeling between his shoulder blades kicked in again when he saw no sign of his car. He frowned as he walked toward the back entrance of his house, the house his grandmother had bought for him. It was a beautiful four-thousand-square-foot Tudor. He shivered when he thought about what she would say when she found out he'd added Elaine's name to the deed in one of those tonsil-kissing moments. For months, he'd been trying to find the courage—no, the guts—to tell his grandmother what he'd done. He knew she'd go ballistic, as would his two aunts. None of them liked Elaine. No, that wasn't right, either. They hated Elaine; they could not stand her. And Elaine hated them right back.

Elaine said his grandmother and the aunts were jealous of her because she was young and beautiful and had stolen his love away from them. He'd never quite been able to wrap his mind around that, but back then, if Elaine said it, he tended to believe it. With very few reservations. His grandmother and the aunts had been a little more blunt and succinct, saying straight out that Elaine was a gold digger. End of discussion.

The strain between him and his beloved zany grandmother and dippy aunts bothered him. He had hated having to meet them on the sly, then keeping the meeting secret so he wouldn't have to fight with Elaine and suffer through weeks of tortured silence with no tonsil kissing and absolutely no sex. Elaine held a grudge like no one he knew.

He owed everything to his grandmother. She'd raised him, sent him to college, financed his own CPA firm, then helped him again by buying him the beautiful house that he now lived in. With Elaine. And no prenup.

His grandmother had never once asked him even to consider paying her back, even when he'd tried.

He loved her, he really did, and he hated the situation he was in. Tomorrow or the day after, regardless of how it turned out, he was going to have a come-to-Jesus meeting with his wife and lay down some new rules. Family was family, and it was time that Elaine realized that.

Gus opened the gate to the yard, and Wilson came running to him. Wilson was the one thing he'd put his foot down on. Elaine said dogs made her itch and sneeze. Well, too bad; Wilson was his dog, and that was that.

"What are you doing out here, boy?" Gus tussled with the German shepherd a moment before walking up the steps to the deck, which was located off the kitchen. The low-wattage back light was on. He didn't need Wilson's shrill barking to alert him to the pile of suitcases and duffel bags sitting outside the kitchen door. His suitcases. Six of them. And two duffel bags. All lined up like soldiers. Next to the suitcases was a pink laundry basket with Wilson's blanket and toys. He knew even before he put the key in the lock that the door wouldn't open.

"Son of a bitch!" He looked at the hundred-pound dog, who was barking his head off and dancing around the pink laundry basket. The jittery feeling between his shoulder blades had grown into a full-blown, mind-bending pain.

The words gold digger flitted through Gus's mind as he tried to peer in through the kitchen window. The only thing he could see wa
(Continues...)


Excerpted from The Blossom Sisters by FERN MICHAELS. Copyright © 2013 by MRK Productions. Excerpted by permission of KENSINGTON PUBLISHING CORP..
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 23 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 23 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 30, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    The Blossom Sisters by Fern Michaels What I like about this book

    The Blossom Sisters by Fern Michaels
    What I like about this book is it's about a male. He was married, and now she's taken everything from him in the divorce.
    He relies on his friend and he comes through for him many times over. He attempts to have his grandmother help him but she and his aunts want no part of him. He had chosen his wife over them.
    He has to prove himself now to them. Love the work they do at the farm and who the workers are-so refreshing to learn of their career choices.
    They do allow Gus to help them in their endeavor and he is on probation. Lots of lawyers and PI's and surveillance from both sides to see who will get what in the settlement.
    Lots of secrets up in the attic and things fall apart even more. Everything falls into place to solve the mysteries...
    Easy to keep track of the characters and I can't wait for another in the series so I can catch up with them further.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 3, 2013

    This was an excellent book. It was an easy, fast read with unfor

    This was an excellent book. It was an easy, fast read with unforgettable caracters. I sure hope there will be a sequel. Fern Michaels always does an excellent job and this book proves her unending talent.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 18, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Fun and Heart-Warming

    THE BLOSSOM SISTERS wasn’t exactly what I was expecting, but it was a charming story that I enjoyed as it had me laughing at times. Narrator Jeff Crawford does a wonderful job of bringing the various characters to life, including Wilson. His interruption of the emotions draws the listener in. Gus Hollister went against the advice of his grandmother Rose, his Aunts Iris and Violet, and everyone else to marry Elaine. Now he’s paying dearly for it. Elaine has taken the house, his car and is filing for divorce. The only thing she gave him was his clothes and his dog, Wilson. Choosing the gold-digger over his family alienated him from those he loves and they aren’t ready to forgive him yet. Gus is determined to make amends with his grandmother and his aunts with the help of his best friend, Barney. Working to redeem himself in the eyes of his family, Gus becomes the man he should have been. Seeking forgiveness from his family for his mistakes, Gus also discovers new friendships he never expected and that there is true love. THE BLOSSOM SISTERS isn’t just a story about three elderly sisters like I thought it would be. It’s about family, friendship, loyalty, helping others, and finding peace with yourself. Author Fern Michaels has created zany, realistic characters you’d like to know in real life. The sisters are spirited and spunky. They aren’t seniors willing to give up on life or living. The friendship between Gus and Barney is the type we all hope for - friends forever through good and bad. Michaels even brings out the bond between man and his dog. In addition, she gives insight into being productive long after retirement age. The story moves at a steady pace with a few surprises and twists along the way. Michaels shows how someone can be more connected to a person they dislike than they realize. This is what I call a ‘feel-good’ story that will have you laughing at the antics of some of the characters. THE BLOSSOM SISTERS will warm you heart and give you a new perspective on a few things. FTC Full Disclosure - This audio book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 22, 2013

    What a fun read!

    The story is delightful, with twists and turns and so many interesting characters. You will not be disappointed in this one.

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  • Posted September 15, 2013

    Thoroughly enjoyed it!

    The Blossom Sisters always get their man or woman!

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  • Posted July 22, 2013

    so.so

    kind of silly & different.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 20, 2013

    To blossomkit

    Really?

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 3, 2013

    Would like a refund .....

    Loved the characters, ut Ms. Michaels left several plot lines hanging - #1 - No justice for Elaine's deeds; #2 - Jumped from Gus having dinner with his attorney to marrying her; #3 - No real explaination for Barney's disinterest in his business - very disappointed that these story lines were not developed for a more well rounded story. Sorry, Fern, you missed the "big yellow bus" on this one.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 31, 2013

    Highly Recommend

    I purchased this for my mother. She loved it - declaredit hilarious.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 31, 2013

    Great Reading - Funny and at the same time enlighting about the older generation

    Enjoyed it very much. Each character brings their own unique personality to light about the older generation and what they are still cable of doing and enjoying life.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 14, 2013

    I would give this 0 stars.  It was incredibly bad writing.  The

    I would give this 0 stars.  It was incredibly bad writing.  The dialogue was so bad, I couldn't read this book.  Ridiculous plot, unrealistic characters, poor writing (how many times can you say "unring that bell?").  Please save your money.  

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  • Posted May 11, 2013

    I have been reading Fern Michael's work for years and have alway

    I have been reading Fern Michael's work for years and have always enjoyed it. She never fails to write a wonderful story with delightfully compelling characters. The Blossom Sisters is another one of those books with a story that just reaches out and touches your heart. Ms. Michaels has a way of creating characters that our so heartfelt and yet so totally humorous all at the same time. I just love this woman's work and The Blossom Sisters is no exception. I love to be engrossed in a good book and find myself laughing with the characters.




    I absolutely adored Grandma Rose and the 2 aunts. Oh my goodness these women are full of spunk & sass and yet they are strong willed and independent. I would love to meet up with these ladies for tea. The project they have going on is just fabulous. It is such a boost to a bunch of people that need it. I loved their idea and how they were able to implement the whole thing pretty much on their.. I don't want to give to many details away here so I'll you read about their wonderful program.




    Gus was blinded by love (false love) and almost lost his family. Thankfully he quickly found out that his family mattered more to him then his wife that was trying to take him for everything he had and then some. I did not like his wife at all. She just isn't a nice person in anyway shape or form in my opinion. 




    I loved the aspect of the family relationships in this book. This wasn't the romance book that I thought it might be. There is some romance between Gus and his spunky Lawyer Jill. It takes them a while to hit it off but they sure are fun to read about while they are getting the right sparks firing. I loved Jill with her well put together attitude and the  soft side that she was hiding. Jill is one tough firecracker of a lady. 




    I also enjoyed the brotherhood relations between Barney and Gus. They are brothers in every way but blood. I don't think being blood brother could have made them any closer. This is a very special relationship that helps them both get through the rough spots in life. 




    Overall I really enjoyed this book even though it wasn't what I expected to begin with. Of course when I am reading a Fern Michaels' book I never know what story I'm going to get but there is a high chance that I'm going to enjoy it. And let me tell you I really did enjoy this story. If you are looking for a good book with a little mystery, drama, family bonding, and some romance thrown in the mix, I think you'll enjoy The Blossom Sisters.




    I believe this is a stand alone for now but I would be happy by a second book in the series to catch us up a little more. 




    I was lucky enough to get a copy of this book from Netgalley to be able to read and share my thoughts on. 

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 11, 2013

    When I read the Overview on this book, I REALLY LIKED IT. So, I

    When I read the Overview on this book, I REALLY LIKED IT. So, I bought it. WHAT A WASTE OF MONEY, NOT TO MENTION, TIME!!! I gave it a star because I liked some of the characters, and I liked the old people and what they were trying to do. But, the story was so "disjointed". For instance, Elaine goes out on a date with her lawyer, Isaac Diamond. Evidently, something terrible happens on the date, but we are not told what it is, only that, afterwards, she wants to kill him! I also did not like the WITCHCRAFT parts. As to Gus & Jill's relationship, the author takes us from first date to Wedding Day, with no development of the characters or their relationship. In the hands of a different author perhaps it would have been an average story. As it is, it's a very simplistic story, with likable characters, but no part is complete. It's like she had time or space restraints and just tied it all together at the end. A quick, but unsatisfying, read.

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    Posted July 12, 2013

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    Posted June 2, 2013

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    Posted June 24, 2013

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