Tag Archives: Adventure

AUDIOBOOK REVIEW: 5 Stars for Inherit the Sky (Lang Downs #1) by Ariel Tachna #MM #Adventure @dreamspinners

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Title: Inherit the Sky (Lang Downs #1)
Author Name & Publisher: Ariel Tachna (Dreamspinner Press)
Publication Date & Length: February 20, 2012 – 206 pgs

Synopsis

Caine Neiheisel is stuck in a dead-end job at the end of a dead-end relationship when the chance of a lifetime falls in his lap. His mother inherits her uncle’s sheep station in New South Wales, Australia, and Caine sees it as the opportunity to start over, out on the range where his stutter won’t hold him back and his willingness to work will surely make up for his lack of knowledge. Unfortunately, Macklin Armstrong, the foreman of Lang Downs who should be Caine’s biggest ally, alternates between being cool and downright dismissive, and the other hands are more amused by Caine’s American accent than they are moved by his plight… until they find out he’s gay and their amusement turns to scorn. It will take all of Caine’s determination-and an act of cruel sabotage by a hostile neighbor-to bring the men of Lang Downs together and give Caine and Macklin a chance at love.

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Review

FiveStars

**AUDIOBOOK REVIEW**

I have to admit this was a bit of a surprise for me. I’d heard that Arial Tachna was a good author, but hadn’t yet picked up one of her books. This is an older book of hers, but I still really really enjoyed it.
The men are from two VERY different worlds. Watching Caine grow and become a strong man who believes in himself and his decisions was really fantastic.
Then there was Macklin, who is very used to things being done his way and Caine throws him off by not always willing to go with the flow.
I really can’t say how much I liked this book enough. There is some choas and turmoil which made for some antsy parts, but in the end I loved it all.
The narrator did an excellent job with the many voices and accents that were needed in the book. I felt he really added to the story.
Renee

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5 stars for Shell Shocked (Yolks on You #1) by Jessica Payseur #MM #Mystery #ActionAdventure

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Title: Shell Shocked (Yolks on You #1)
Author Name & Publisher: Jessica Payseur (JMS Books)
Publication Date & Length: March 27, 2016 — 199 pages

Synopsis

When Dominic agrees to join his boyfriend Alec and his kids for a weekend away at the annual Eggstravaganza in Mount Angus, Wisconsin, he’s expecting a boring, if kitschy, experience. He isn’t expecting to discover Alec is cheating on him, and he certainly isn’t expecting an exploding cow to drop him in the middle of a deadly mystery.

Suddenly single and surrounded by a town’s worth of suspects, Dom finds himself oddly drawn to playing the sleuth, especially if it will get him closer to Kiko, the owner of the niche shop Yolks on You.

Together the two men navigate a web of intrigue and lies, and the sniping of a jealous Alec, in a town filled with murder and Easter-themed mayhem. Will they manage to make it through the Eggstravaganza alive, or will the murderer leave them much more than just Shell Shocked?

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Review

FiveStars

This is an intriguing book with murder, mayhem, cheating boyfriend turned ex jealous boyfriend, to explosions, guns, and lots of Easter eggs. So in other words there is something for everyone in this book, including but not limited to finding that one person who makes you think of changing your whole life and taking a chance on love again.

His was really a great book. It holds you captivated from the moment the first explosion takes place. Every time you think the characters, Kiko and Dom, has figured out who it is that is setting the explosions off there is a new twist and turn that tells you …. Nope, you have the wrong person. Then when you get close to the end and you really think that you know who it is finally… You are thrown for another loop and BAM it is not that person either.

Not to mention along the way Kiko and Dom continually get closer to one another and you are left wondering will they work out or are they going to leave it at a vacation fling. Even that is a mystery up to the last moment when you think you finally figured that out also and hen they do what you did not see coming.

If you like a book with action, adventure, mystery, and love lost and love gained…. You will love this book. I know I did and I cannot wait to see what Jessica Payseur will do in the future with new books in the series. Definitely a book that captures your attention and holds it too the very end. It was a great read.

~Tosha

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New Release: Rebirth (The Eternal Dungeon Volume One) by Dusk Peterson #AlternativeUniverse #Historical @DuskPeterson

rebirth6x9Title: Rebirth (The Eternal Dungeon Volume One)
Author Name & Publisher: Dusk Peterson (Love in Dark Settings Press)
Publication Date: February 22, 2016

Synopsis

“‘This prisoner deserves special treatment.’ The hooded man looked over at the young man again.”

Elsdon Taylor, a prisoner accused of committing a terrible murder. Layle Smith, a torturer with a terrible past. Their meeting in the Eternal Dungeon appears certain to bring out the worst in both men.

Yet neither man is quite what he appears. As the prisoner and his torturer begin to be drawn toward each other, the ripple effects of their meeting will have a powerful impact on other inhabitants of the Eternal Dungeon: Layle’s faithful guard, struggling to contain his doubts. A younger guard determined to take any shortcuts necessary to ensure that his life follows the path he has already chosen. An old love from Layle’s past, still sorrowing. And most of all, a prisoner who has not yet arrived at the Eternal Dungeon, but whose fate will depend on how Layle handles Elsdon Taylor . . . and on how Elsdon handles Layle Smith.

A winner of the 2011 Rainbow Awards (within the “The Eternal Dungeon” omnibus), this tale of love and adventure can be read on its own or as the first volume in The Eternal Dungeon, a speculative fiction series set in a nineteenth-century prison where the psychologists wield whips.

The Eternal Dungeon series is part of Turn-of-the-Century Toughs, a cycle of alternate history series (Waterman, Life Prison, Commando, Michael’s House, The Eternal Dungeon, and Dark Light) about adults and youths on the margins of society, and the people who love them. Set in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, the novels and stories take place in an alternative version of America that was settled by inhabitants of the Old World in ancient times. As a result, the New World retains certain classical and medieval customs.

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Excerpt

“Do you have any questions?” the Seeker asked. “About the routine of the dungeon? The times you will be fed? The questions you will be asked? The instruments of torture I use?”

The faintness went beyond Elsdon’s voice this time and entered his body. He could feel the sweat upon his skin; he wondered whether he had turned white. He blurted out, “What if I’m innocent?”

The Seeker’s gaze did not waver. “If you are innocent, then I trust that our time together will be short. I would far rather find a prisoner innocent than guilty; too many prisoners are sent to us, and the quicker that we can release them from here, the better. If your release is to the lighted world rather than to the executioner, it is likely to come more quickly. But we are commissioned by the Queen to ascertain the truth of accusations of death-sentence crimes, and we are committed to fulfill that commission. Please don’t waste my time with false pleas of innocence, Mr. Taylor. It will only make our time together more difficult.”

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TWO 4 Stars for X Marks the Spot by M.J. O’Shea #MM #Romance @MJosheaseattle @dreamspinners

1.5

Title: X Marks the Spot
Author Name & Publisher: M.J. O’Shea (Dreamspinner Press)
Publication Date & Length: November 2, 2015 – 205 pgs

Synopsis

Jack Hunter is always on a quest for lost art, ancient manuscripts, and anything else that’ll romance the millions of viewers who watch his show each week. He hasn’t always hit pay dirt in his searches though, and a string of empty global treasure hunts has left his show on the brink of cancellation. Jack needs a white whale, a holy grail, nothing less than a miracle to revive his career.

Aloysius “Alo” Green likes his ivory towers. He’s content to study from the comfort of a university library and publish papers nobody other than academics will ever read. But coded letters pointing to hidden Nazi treasure fall into his hands, and while colleagues warn him to keep them to himself, Alo can’t stop obsessing. He makes a huge mistake and publishes a paper on his find, ignoring the danger doing so will bring.

Jack is sure he’s struck gold when his assistant brings Alo’s paper to him. Alo wants nothing to do with Jack or his televised treasure hunt. But after Alo is threatened, it appears Jack is his best bet to silence those who seek to use him to find the vast wealth first.

By trusting Jack, Alo might’ve saved himself… or made his worst decision yet.

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Review

FourStars

I loved the action, adventure and mystery in this book!
You get Jack who is a treasure hunter with his own TV show and Alo who very smart and is a teachers aide in collage. Well Alo discovers a hidden treasure map in some letters his grandfather gave him. Well then weird things start happening and lets just say I was on the edge of my seat after that.
Alo and Jack were very good together and the sparks between these two. You could tell how much they were falling for each other.
There was just much going on in this book between Alo running from bad guys to Jack just trying to save his show. Plus all the different characters you meet. I also loved the way the author wrote these two men together. This book was definitely a slow burn but for Jack and Alo it worked.

So all together I really liked this book!
I would recommend this book!

Kara

FourStars

This is not a new author for me and this book was good but a little predictable. I loved the action and adventure but I just could not seem to really get into the book. This may have to do with some of the off-the-wall types of situations they characters were in. Alo and Jack were clearly a couple meant to be together and would love to see more to their story. Overall a really good read and the writing was flawless.

~Lynn

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5 Stars for Inherit the Sky (Lang Downs #1) by Ariel Tachna #MM #Adventure @dreamspinners

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Title: Inherit the Sky (Lang Downs #1)
Author Name & Publisher: Ariel Tachna (Dreamspinner Press)
Publication Date & Length: February 20, 2012 – 206 pgs

Synopsis

Caine Neiheisel is stuck in a dead-end job at the end of a dead-end relationship when the chance of a lifetime falls in his lap. His mother inherits her uncle’s sheep station in New South Wales, Australia, and Caine sees it as the opportunity to start over, out on the range where his stutter won’t hold him back and his willingness to work will surely make up for his lack of knowledge. Unfortunately, Macklin Armstrong, the foreman of Lang Downs who should be Caine’s biggest ally, alternates between being cool and downright dismissive, and the other hands are more amused by Caine’s American accent than they are moved by his plight… until they find out he’s gay and their amusement turns to scorn. It will take all of Caine’s determination-and an act of cruel sabotage by a hostile neighbor-to bring the men of Lang Downs together and give Caine and Macklin a chance at love.

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Review

FiveStars

This is the first book in one of my all time favourite series. Here we watch Caine make the journey from his safe but dead-end life in Philadelphia to a sheep station in Australia’s wild outback.

As the first book, it is the most typical “romance” of the series. It is also the simplest book in the series. Most of the focus remains on Caine and his foreman Macklin as they figure out their relationship. The dramas are small – Macklin is justifiably wary of coming out in the outback and Caine has to adjust to a rough new world while working to gain respect from the men who work for him. The two central character are brilliantly drawn. The city boy with a business degree and the hardened stockman compliment each other beautifully. Both men are strong, attractive and interesting enough to carry a full series.

Lang Downs Station is introduced for the first time here. I accidentally started with book five, so I found it fascinating to go back in time more than ten years to the initial descriptions of characters who become very important to the station and the series over time. This first book is a testament to Tachna’s ability to write complex characters who grow and develop through the series.

I probably wouldn’t give this first book five stars in its own right, though I’d give the series as a whole five stars. It moves slowly as Tachna introduces readers to her outback and the characters who live on Lang Downs. But I’m not sure this book could have moved quicker. Readers need the details and the jargon to immerse themselves in Caine and Macklin’s world. The series definitely gets better from here, but this book starts everything off brilliantly.

Sarah

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4 Stars for Six Degrees of Separation by Taylor V. Donovan #MM #Adventure @taylorvdonovan @Dreamspinners

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TitleSix Degrees of Separation (By Degrees #2)
Author Name: Taylor V. Donovan (Dreamspinner Press)
Publication Date & Length: May 22, 2015 – 350 pgs

Synopsis

FBI team leader Samuel Shaughnessy and bar manager Machlan O’Bannon are exploring a new phase in their non-relationship. The intention is to take it slowly, but power plays are still their favorite activity, and it isn’t long before lines begin blurring. After ending their friends with benefits agreement, no rules are left in place to guide them, and soon the only thing that’s clear is that neither man is fighting hard enough to reestablish the boundaries.

Their situations haven’t improved in the three months since their first encounter. Sam is still focused on his immediate family issues, and everything indicates Mac will have to go to war with his own family before he can reclaim his freedom. The last thing they need is additional complications.

But when the opening of a nightclub brings Mac to New York City and a break in the Leviticus investigation leads Sam to Houston, they discover how closely their worlds have been connected from the beginning. Hiding from the life-altering collision is not an option. They can take the easier road and go their separate ways or come to terms with their pasts and take a chance on each other.

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Review

FourStars

I probably should have started at the beginning of the series but I still really enjoyed this second story on its own. Agent Sam Shaughnessy and his team are still tracking the serial killer they’ve called Leviticus – and he is still killing gay men.

Sam’s lover, Mac, and his friends become entangled in Leviticus’ game as the agents rush to find the killer. I loved discovering the connections between each of the separate characters over the course of this book. But each connection also revealed the characters’ connections to Leviticus.

Sam and Mac’s relationship is fantastic. The book starts with the relationship being formally re-defined, but Mac still has secrets and Sam doesn’t let anyone too close – so this relationship will never be easy. But the chemistry is amazing and the sex is very hot.

A few new characters and connections were added in this book and I’m interested to see how things spill into the next book. I love the complexity of the Leviticus case and I’m excitedly anticipating the next installment.

Sarah

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4 Stars for Family Jewels by M.J. O’Shae #MM #Adventure @mjosheaseattle @dreamspinners

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Title: Family Jewels
Author Name: M.J. O’Shea
Publication Date & Length: April 27, 2015 – 200 pgs

Synopsis

Corbin Ford, aka the Nightwatchman, named for the antique pocket watches he leaves behind at jobs, has been in the cat-burgling business for years. His father was. His grandfather was. His mother is still one of the most renowned thieves. Corbin likes his high-profile heists, priceless paintings from private collections, artifacts from museums, but his favorite? Jewels. Sparkly, beautiful jewels. If they’re famous, better yet.

Interpol agent Luke Eldridge has one goal and one goal only: to catch the Nightwatchman. Luke’s been after him for months, but getting the slip time and again is getting embarrassing. Luke has never even laid eyes on the bastard, but he’d happily strangle him. And then arrest him.

When Luke meets Corbin, the man of his dreams, he falls hard and fast… only to catch Corbin red-handed with his hand in a jewelry case at the scene of the highest-profile murder that’s rocked the international world in years.

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Review

FourStars

This isn’t a realistic heist caper, but it is a fast-paced, exciting story.  Luke and Corbin are  charming, attractive men. Supporting characters are well-developed, dialogue is beautifully written and the story is soaked in the quiet glamour of old-money London.

There is great chemistry between the two leads and the action culminates in an unusual ending.  This is for anyone who likes a little bit of glamorous fantasy and unlikely romance mixed into their crime stories.

Sarah

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3 Stars for Cafe Blue by J. Carter Swift #MM #Adventure

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TitleCafe Blue
Author Name: J. Carter Swift
Publication Date & Length: January 31, 2015 – 178pgs

Synopsis

On a rainy night at Café Blue, Ayden Munro meets Nikolai Bortzov, a young Russian caught in a nightmare. Both lives will never be the same. Ayden, a writer, is pulled into the dark world of human trafficking, where teenage boys are bought and sold. Café Blue brings together a cast of saints and demons, and the story these characters interact to tell is a story of love and obsession, a story of perversion and murder. Inventive and intense, the reader is given no quarter as the narrative weaves in and out of heartbreakingly sweet moments, and moments of heart-pounding suspense.

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Review

ThreeStar

This book is a whirlwind of adventure, romance and horror.  After placing any hope of realism firmly to one side, I couldn’t help but enjoy this story of an author and an enslaved prostitute taking on multiple evil bad guys in New York City.

True, the cast of characters is immense, the bad guys are straight from central casting and convoluted sub-plots create incoherent action scenes – but once you get past all of that, it is impossible not to love Ayden and Niko.

On their path to true love and happiness, the boys must overcome slavery, snuff films and a sadistic mute with an enormous penis.  After a second read-through, I’m still not sure what exactly happens in the last few chapters of the book, but Swift serves up enough high-camp horror for several novels.

For full enjoyment, this must be read with a sense of humour and a few glasses of wine.

Sarah

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“Why a writer? I should have been a surgeon or a mechanic, for surely a scalpel or wrench couldn’t cause me the anguish words do.”
― J. Carter Swift

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3 Stars for When Will I See You Again by Julie Lynn Hayes #MM #Shifters @ShelleyRunyon

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Title: When Will I See You Again
Author Name: Julie Lynn Hayes
Publication Date & Length: January 26, 2014 – 254 pgs

Synopsis

Raoul Marchand is the crown prince of Charisma, the infamous night club in Crescent Bay, renowned for its supernatural clientele. He has the pick of any and all men, but he cares for none. He uses them and throws them away again, and has done so for some twenty years, in the aftermath of a tragedy that robbed him of what he loved most in the world.

Alexx Jameson is an idealistic would-be reporter with the Crescent Bay Chronicle. Presented with an opportunity to write a story on the Marchands, he eagerly grasps the chance to be a real reporter. His friend, Chronicle receptionist Miller Fenwick, suggests they go to Charisma to do a little research. Alexx isn’t sure that’s such a great idea. After all, he’s still under age, being only twenty. No problem, Miller can fix that! Added bonus, there’s a full moon tonight.

When Alexx first encounters Raoul, it isn’t exactly in the way he dreamed of, and he’s sure he made a terrible first impression. But Fate throws them together under unforeseen circumstances, and the attraction between them can’t be denied.

Can Raoul let go of the past long enough to find his future with Alexx, or is he doomed to repeat past mistakes?

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Review

ThreeStar

It took me a while to get into this story.  I found the beginning confusing and I felt like too many characters were thrown at me too quickly for me to absorb.

Once I found my bearings, I really enjoyed this tale of werewolves, murder and romance.  Alexx is a great lead – I loved how the plucky, wannabe journalist rises to the occasion when he finds himself involved in a murder investigation.  The older, jaded and guarded Raoul is the perfect match for Alexx’s naive innocence and the two are a fantastic pairing.

I think a little more world-building needed to happen in this story.  I’m still not very clear about Raoul’s family or the nature of the werewolves in Crescent Bay.  But I enjoyed the book and I’m looking forward to the next book in the series.

Sarah

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AuthorBio

Julie Lynn Hayes was reading at the age of two and writing by the age of nine and always wanted to be a writer when she grew up. Two marriages, five children, and more than forty years later, that is still her dream. She blames her younger daughters for introducing her to yaoi and the world of M/M love, a world which has captured her imagination and her heart and fueled her writing in ways she’d never dreamed of before. She especially loves stories of two men finding true love and happiness in one another’s arms and is a great believer in the happily ever after. She lives in St. Louis with her daughter Sarah and her cat, Ramesses, loves books and movies and role playing on the Internet, and hopes to be a world traveler some day. By day, she’s an administrative assistant for a global elevator company, by night she writes and is also an editor for Wayward Ink Publishing and MuseitUp Publishing. Her family thinks she is a bit off, but she doesn’t mind. Marching to the beat of one’s own drummer is a good thing, after all.

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4 Stars for Osaki by Remmy Duchene #MM #Urban Fantasy @Totally_Bound

1.5

Title: Osaki
Author Name: Remmy Duchene
Publication Date: April 2015

Synopsis

Once a samurai, always a Shiver…

Kofi Olabasu needs a vacation. He’s spent so much time looking out for his brother and working that he’s completely neglected himself. To make matters worse, feelings for a man are driving him crazy. The moment Kofi feels Osaki, he knows something is about to change. Confused about his attraction to Osaki, he agrees to take a vacation and accepts Osaki’s offer of being Kofi’s tour guide in Japan. However, nothing is as it seems. Soon every dark corner is filled with danger and those who wish to do him harm.

Osaki has a lot on his plate and love is the last thing he has time for. Not only does he have to get used to his new powers as a Shiver and all the training it involves, but he also finds himself being drawn to a human—though Kofi makes it clear he’s into women—and Osaki must respect the man’s wishes. All Osaki really has to do is focus on training and being the best tour guide possible for Kofi. But nothing ever goes as planned and soon rogue Shivers are popping out of the woodwork, hell-bent on destroying Osaki for his inheritance. It soon becomes quite clear that they want him dead, and they’re not afraid to use Kofi as leverage—or as collateral damage.

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Review

FourStars

Duchene’s prose is lyrical and evocative, a treat for the senses and this is a wonderfully unusual series.  In Duchene’s world, gods, goddesses and other mythological beings wage war in the heavens while finding time to enjoy the 21st century human world.

In the second book, Osaki is a medieval Samurai soldier turned Shiver. He is helping Circo and Koi protect the world from their rogue Shiver brothers, all of whom resent Osaki’s new powers.   Kofi, Circo’s brother-in-law, is a human real estate agent Osaki has been charged with protecting.

I absolutely love the way the author has made ancient mythology fresh.  The author manages to make the classical characters both relevant and historically accurate.  I also love the mix of mythologies – of course a brave Samurai would be granted entry to Olympus!

The main characters are both fabulous.  But while there are fantastic descriptions of the Japanese warrior, there are very few descriptions of Kofi.  And I really loved him!  There are possibly too many characters here for a reader to keep track of, especially when trying to remember the family ties between all the god and demi gods.

This is not a stand alone novel.  For a story with such a complex premise, very little information is offered to readers at the start of the book.  I found myself lost.  I had to put the story down and read Circo, the first book in the series, before I began to understand the story.  Unfortunately, even after reading the first book, I still had unanswered questions that kept me searching through my Kindle, sure I’d missed some important facts.

The action and romance in this story are perfectly balanced.  Kofi’s confusion over his sexual identity is incredibly moving and the relationship with his brother is very sweet.  Kofi’s insecurities are met with Osaki’s gentlemanly reserve, making for an excruciatingly drawn-out courtship.  I loved every single scene between the two men.

While the action scenes were exciting and the whole story very suspenseful, there were times where I found it difficult to understand who their enemy was and why they were fighting.

Overall, this is both a tender love story and an exciting adventure.

Sarah

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AuthorBio

Remmy Duchene is a Canadian-hockey-watching-baseball-playing kind of guy. He loves walking in the rain and bugging his friends about his latest story ideas. Remmy believes that true love comes in all shapes, sizes, and sexualities. He is always saying “I’d rather see two gay people in love get married than two straight people that hate each other.”

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