Guest Post (and a Giveaway!): Tina Radcliffe & Six Great Things About Reading

Posted January 18, 2018 by meezcarrie in Author Interview, Christian, contemporary, giveaway, romance, Tina Radcliffe / 223 Comments

I am so excited to have Tina Radcliffe on the blog today – and of course I’m loving the topic she chose to write about! Another thing I’m loving right now? The cover of her new book, Claiming Her Cowboy, which released January 1st.

You’ll see what I mean in a second…


Six Great Things About Reading

by Tina Radcliffe

As a writer, it can be very challenging to fit reading time into my daily schedule. Time isn’t the only challenging part. Writers can find it difficult to get lost in a book as we have trained ourselves to analyze everything we read. We look at structure, goal-motivation-conflict, emotions, word choice, sentence structure and every other technical aspect of the novel. That takes the joy out of reading the back of a cereal box, much less a novel.

With the pressure on reviews (reading and writing them) before and after we buy a book, often we forget how to lose ourselves in a book. We can create a subconscious filter before we even read chapter one. Instead of simply reading the book in hand, we can be guilty of reading the book we wish was in our hand. Too often, we fail to immerse ourselves in the total experience.

This does a huge disservice to the writer and mostly to the reader.

As we are beginning 2018 I’m returning to my first love of reading…as a reader. I’ve committed to forgetting about everything except what’s between the pages with the following reminders.

1. Books make you happier, and most studies show that to be especially true of paper books. They relieve stress and relax us, providing permission to forget about our personal issues while turning pages “Regular readers sleep better, have lower stress levels, higher self-esteem, and lower rates of depression than non-readers.” The New Yorker

2. Reading can stave off mental decline. In fact, a Yale University School of Public Health study shows that reading as little as three and a half hours of fiction a week can lengthen your life.

3. Books expand your understanding and empathy of the world around you. A reader in Freeport, Kansas (population 5ish) and another in New York City (population of 8,537,673) both become educated and enlightened about a book describing characters and locale of a place neither have visited. It doesn’t matter if the book is a memoir, a political essay or a novel. The world becomes smaller when we read.

4. Not unlike a hospital gown, books are the great equalizer. They are no respecter of person. What you get out of them is directly correlated to what you put into them.

5. Books are as magical as are the words strung together to create them. They are the closet to Narnia every single time if you let yourself believe.

“Words are, in my not-so-humble opinion, our most inexhaustible source of magic…” — Professor Albus Dumbledore.

6. Books are a conversation with people you have never met. The more you read, the more people you meet. They allow you to converse with the most unlikely characters from the safety of the pages. Even an introvert like me finds that exciting!


This is my list, what’s on yours? Why do you read books? What are your reading plans for the New Year?

Leave a comment and I’ll be sending a print copy or digital copy of Claiming Her Cowboy to one commenter, along with a Nerdy Girl mug.

Thank you so much, Tina! “[Books] are the closet to Narnia every single time if you let yourself believe.” I love that! So true ♥

Are y’all ready for that cover now? ….


Set ….


Attorney Jackson Harris regularly goes toe-to-toe with the world’s toughest lawyers—but none of them compare to Lucy Maxwell.

The feisty director of Oklahoma’s Big Heart Ranch for orphans is as stubborn as she is pretty. But Jack must stay focused; he’s only there to evaluate the ranch’s funding. Falling for Lucy and the sweet children she protects is out of the question.

Though Lucy is determined to keep the ranch, she’s not about to give control to a city slicker—even a devastatingly good-looking one.

But as they bump heads, Jack and Lucy gradually nudge open their hearts. Could a temporary cowboy become a permanent part of Lucy’s life?

Originally from Western, N.Y., Tina Radcliffe left home for a tour of duty with the Army Security Agency stationed in Augsburg, Germany and ended up in Tulsa Oklahoma. While living in Tulsa she spent ten years as a Certified Oncology R.N. Her move to Colorado led to a career as a library cataloger. A 2014 ACFW Carol Award winner, she has won first place in over twenty RWA chapter affiliated contests in her career and she is on the RWA Honor Roll. Tina is also a short story writer and has sold over two dozen short stories to Woman’s World Magazine. She currently resides in Arizona where she writes fun, heartwarming romance.

Stay up to date on all her releases and fun giveaways by signing up for her newsletter here. Visit her on the web at

Tina Radcliffe is giving away a copy of Claiming Her Cowboy (print or digital, US only) plus that adorable Nerdy Girl mug!! This giveaway is subject to Reading Is My SuperPower’s giveaway policies which can be found here. Enter via the Rafflecopter form below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway



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223 responses to “Guest Post (and a Giveaway!): Tina Radcliffe & Six Great Things About Reading

  1. Lori R

    I read books because they take me to places I have never been. They help me relax after work and escape being snowed in. I plan to read over 100 books this year.

  2. Perrianne Askew

    I read to relax. I think I set my Goodreads goal to 50 this year. I’m not sure if I’m on track with that. Thanks for the writer’s insight on reading and the giveaway opportunity.

  3. Traci Rhodes

    Great post! One of the things I want to do this year is read more. Last year I didn’t read nearly as much as I should have. One of my all time favorite quotes about reading is from George RR Martin. “The reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only once.”

  4. Les

    Well, I read for my job, since I’m an editor and reviewer. However, I’d read anyway, as it’s a great way to relax. I also love to read books that educate me as well as entertain me.

    Thanks for the chance to win. I love that mug!

    • Wow, I love your job..somebody’s gotta do it, right? And to be surrounded in books all the time. That’s as good as my library job. And thank you, GOD for readers and reviewers. Thank you for taking time to stop by and comment Les. You are much appreciated.

  5. Great post – thank you Carrie and Tina! I love to read, but as you said, reading as a writer can “take the joy out” of it sometimes. So, occasionally I will read something in a genre I rarely read and will never write. Very freeing for some reason. Having said that, I will admit to reading, and thoroughly enjoying, Claiming Her Cowboy. Loved Lucy Maxwell!

    • Thank you so much, Laura. I will admit that out of all four books…working on number 4 now, Lucy Maxwell is the one character I relate to the most. Gosh, I don’t know why..she’s a micromanaging teddy bear. hahahaha. Thank you for stopping by, dear friend.

  6. Tracey Hagwood

    Waving to my friends Tina and Carrie! I love the six great things list, mine are about the same, but in addition to being an introvert and “talking” to people I’ve never met, I can also travel the world, and go back in time too 🙂

    Re: Reading=happiness~
    I just finished Honeysuckle Dreams late last night and I was happy ALL THE WAY THROUGH it-so good!
    I’ve also time traveled to Colonial Williamsburg, had “conversations” with our founding fathers and experienced both the French Revolution and WW2. Eighteen days in to January and books have made me very happy!!

    Fiction can be so much more exciting than day to day life, if that’s wrong, I don’t want to be right 😉

    Congratulations Tina on your new release, Claiming Her Cowboy! I am a Jackson fan! Your books, especially those endings, always leave me with a deep sigh of happiness! I can’t wait for the next book in this series and hope to catch a glimpse of he and Lucy again!

    • Tracey! I so love time traveling in books. It makes me want to go there in person. I read a lot of one person who sets her books in the NJ/Connecticut/Boston area. I want to see those places and taste that food.

      I sort of started getting my fix on that area by watching Blue Bloods. Yes, first time. The pilot, last night. I have a ton of seasons to reward myself with at the end of the day.

      I like that sort of TV..where I have years to catch up. It’s like finding a great author and discovering she has…wait for it… A LONG BACKLIST!! HEAVEN!!!

  7. Kimberly D Linaburg

    I love to read because it takes me places I have never and probably will never be able to go, but it also helps me to relax right before bed. Thanks for the giveaway!

  8. Linda Romer

    I read books to get lost in a good story. This year has started off slow because my mom is very sick and I am caring for her along with my 2 sisters. I am reading as much as I can but my time is limited. Thank you

  9. Lori Smanski

    This book is on my list. Oh, I so agree with this list. I will have to print it out and share it with friends who read like I do, if that is ok. I mostly read historical Christian romance. This year I want to give cozy mysteries a try.

  10. Anne

    I read because reading is meaningful, wonderful, captivating and fascinating. Reading gives me hope and carries me away from my ailments, ills, problems and worries. Reading has always been my only form of entertainment since I get lost within the pages of the novels and cannot leave. Since I began reading when I was young I know that my enjoyment and pleasure is something which is long lasting.

  11. Hi Tina and Carrie,

    I’ve always loved to read. Books take me to interesting places and good books are like good friends. I don’t want to lose them.

    I’ve read Claiming Her Cowboy and love the story. It’s on my ‘keeper’ shelf. I can’t wait to read more in this series.

  12. emilee

    I hope to read a book a week this year. I try to support authors by posting reviews. I like to read and talk about books like some people craft, golf, fish or play video games. It’s just my hobby. I also love eye-catching book covers. Claiming Her Cowboy does that!

    • Emilee! I love the way your name is spelled. French? Yes, I am so delighted with Melissa Endlich and her team at Love Inspired books for this cover. SWOOOON!

      Thank you for supporting authors. Today, more so than the past it means so much. It can mean the difference between the next contract or not. You are appreciated.

  13. Kay Garrett

    Love and agree with everything on your list. I might add-
    Books help us forget our problems whether physical or emotional.

    Books show us that everyone is different but yet all the same. We all want to be loved and accepted for who we are.

    Books give us a glimpse into other lifestyles or cultures.

    Books are forever – they are always there for us to give up knowledge and comfort.

    I definitely love to read and my plans for 2018 are to explore even more books, authors and change up my typical go to genre from time to time.

    Thank you for the chance to win a copy of “Claiming Her Cowboy”. I would LOVE a print copy!

  14. I love this post! My favorite is #4: “Not unlike a hospital gown, books are the great equalizer. They are no respecter of person. What you get out of them is directly correlated to what you put into them.” What a great statement. This made me laugh out loud.

    • That was the RN in me coming out. When you go into a patient’s room you don’t know or care their profession, political standing, religious belief. You are there to render TLC and make their life better having been there. That is just like books.

  15. I enjoyed reading through your list, Tina, and checking off books that did each of those things for me. I experienced #3 in a powerful way when I read The Kite Runner, disturbing and hard to read but so relevant to world issues today. I read a lot of literature for the English classes I teach, which is very analytical and prep for instruction (a different kind of fun). Right now I’m reading a variety of authors/genres to study their craft. But my favorite reason to read is for escape. I love when I can turn off my teacher brain and writer brain and just be a reader enjoying a book, although sometimes that’s hard to do.

  16. Rita Wray

    I love to read because it’s very relaxing. At the end of the day it’s wonderful to read a book and escape to another place.

    • Exactly, Rita. Okay, now in all honesty, have you tried reading in a bathtub. That is so not workable, and yet I see it on TV all the time. I have drowned many a paperback that way.

  17. I love to read because…well, I guess partly because I’ve always loved to read…lol…I think I love it because it is an escape. And it provides a means of traveling into the vast unknown-lands & times.

  18. Amy

    I read books to learn, escape and dream of handsome cowboys, military/law enforcement heroes….so this book looks right up my alley 🙂

  19. Gloria

    I read to escape, explore other places and get engrossed in lives of characters in series. I love to read suspense that keeps me turning the pages. My husband says that based on the Yale study, I should live a long time. Ha! I get some of the books I read from NetGalley and that has expanded my reading of new authors and genre. I enjoyed your post. The book sounds great!

  20. Hi Gloria!

    If we all get through the books on our Kindle, we may live forever. HA. I like your husband already. Thanks for stopping by. I love readers and reviewers.

  21. Jeanne S

    I read to kinda get out of “my own reality.” Sometimes I read books based on where they are set, just because the place interest me. My goals for this year is to complete 2 series that I’m in the middle of and discover some new authors 🙂

  22. Angela! SO GREAT TO “SEE” YOU! Love your profile pix. How’s life in the great cold Canada? Thanks for the kind words on my book and for taking the time to stop by?

  23. Cassandra Myers

    I read to escape reality, my life sucks most of the time so it is nice to disappear in a book and forget everything. Last year I didn’t read much because my depression was so and so am hoping to get back up over 200 books read this year.

  24. Great reasons to read, Tina–and I’ve already read Claiming Her Cowboy and LOVED it! Actually, I love ALL your books!

    I read to get lost in the story, which means I need to connect in some way with the characters. I like to read in a variety of genres, and I try to change it up each time I start a new book. As a writer, I can’t always turn off the analytical part of my brain (and Grammar Queen insists on inserting her observations as well!), but in some ways that’s good, because maybe I’ll pick up on a technique or facet of the author’s style that will help me improve my own writing.

  25. Penny Mooney

    I love to read to take me away from my real life into a world where I can have adventures and learn about new places. I plan on trying to read at least 60 books a month. I am disabled and it helps keep my mind active and alert. I can’t wait to read this book. Thank you for the chance.

  26. Melissa

    Awesome to #1 and #2. I really that picture of the girl on top of the books. The only thing negative I can say about books though is it depends on the content (clean or not) and you can you anything for escapism which can be bad. Everything in moderation though.

  27. Melissa

    Awesome to #1 and #2. I really like that picture of the girl on top of the books. The only thing negative I can say about books though is it depends on the content (clean or not) and you can use anything for escapism which can be bad. Everything in moderation though.

  28. Carrie, thanks for having Tina Radcliffe visit…one of my favorite authors! I like small towns, so her stories make me feel I’m visiting a charming community, filled with friends. Books take me away, yes, to those places i’ve never been. Magical! I always want to read more books, so the six values of reading are great. And what a cowboy!

  29. Deana Dick

    I read because I did to travel to different places, meet Interesting people and escape from my PTSD for awhile. I love reading because it calms me and I love to be able to explore different subjects abd cheer for the underdog,

    • Hi Deana! So good to see you again. Have you had a chance to read the copy of Claiming Her Cowboy that I sent you? I know that readers like you have a huge, towering TBR pile! And boy am I grateful! I heart readers.

  30. Gina Johnson

    I have always loved reading voraciously. It is my escape and I like to leave reviews to encourage authors.

  31. Marilyn

    I read to educate myself on subjects I am not familiar with and for enjoyment. Reading is relaxing,too.

  32. Dana McNeely

    I’m kind of a quiet homebody, and so I read for the virtual adventure! I want characters to take me to places I’ve never been, make me feel emotions I’ve almost forgotten or never experienced. Like spine-tingling fear, I want to keep that between the pages of a book!

  33. Cynthia St. Germain

    I love reading because it gives me insight how other people live and were they live. I read a lot of different genre because I enjoy experiencing what the writer is explaining in the story and when it really get to me you can find me crying at parts.

  34. This is a great list! I love getting lost in a good book and I love being inspired by the characters. I’m a huge fan of Love Inspired books and the nerdy girl mug is adorable!

  35. Pam K.

    I read books because to me reading is like breathing. My mom read to me as a little girl and since I first learned to read, I have loved it. Books have always been a part of my life. I prefer escaping into a book more than watching a movie. I lead a pretty quiet life, and am content with that, but through books I can experience adventure and go to places I will never actually be able to visit. I can experience life in many different eras and learn about history, all through a good story. There’s all those wonderful, swoony “book boyfriends” too!

  36. Evangeline

    I read for the pure enjoyment of it! And to think that there are so, so many added benefits! Thank you for your list of six great things about reading. I am making a copy of this! You are a new-to-me author , and I would love to win a copy of this book. It sounds delightful. Thanks for the giveaway.

  37. I read books because they are like making new friends, living new experiences and because I’d rather dive into a book than a movie any day. When I was in high school my dad gave me a $20 a week for my chores. I could buy anything I wanted…I took it to the mall and spent it all on books every single time. Reading is like breathing.

  38. I love to read because it helps to keep my imagination sharp. My plans for reading in 2018 — try to tackle more of my Goodreads TBR. The problem is, every time I finish one on it, I seem to add more!

    • Yes, Dawn,

      It really is a health consideration. Reading extends your life and eat dark chocolate while reading because it has powerful antioxidants. I’m glad I could share this medical moment with you!

  39. Winnie Thomas

    Hi Carrie and Tina! I love this post (and both of you amazing ladies)! I would have commented sooner, but I was busy looking at that swoony cowboy on the cover of your book, Tina. Kind of caught my eye! 😀 I totally agree with your list, and I love that reading–and chocolate–can make you live longer, although I’ve also heard that exercising can make you live longer. I sometimes read on my Kindle while walking on the treadmill. I guess I’ll have to snack on chocolate at the same time.

    Thanks, Carrie, for all of your fun and entertaining posts! Hugs, my BFFF!

      • Winnie Thomas

        I don’t know that what I do would really be called exercising, Tina. I’m not very consistent at all, and it’s really just ambling along a bit. I rarely go faster than 2-2.5 mph and usually only make it about 30 minutes, so don’t be impressed! 😀

  40. flchen1

    Great list, Tina! I read for many of those reasons myself! Reading can help me learn something about a place or people I know nothing about; it can make the world smaller as I can travel to a place or time I’ve not visited or lived; it gives me hope and reminds me of the strength of the human spirit; it turns my heart towards God, as He can speak to me through His Word and the words of others. Thanks for the reminder of the gifts of words, Tina!

  41. Jeanna Massman

    I have always loved to read. When I have a book in my hands I’m able to become immersed in a another person’s best stories.

    • Hi Vivian!

      You know, I believe it is.

      Here’s a sample from a favorite scene:

      “Jack?” He slowly raised the visor of the cap from his face and eyed her with suspicion. “Yes, Drill Sergeant?”

      “Why aren’t you napping in your tent?” “My tent doesn’t like me.” He dropped the cap over his face.

      “I see.” She crossed her arms and bit her lip, hoping for a natural opening to the next topic on her mind.

      “Was there something else?” he mumbled. “Um, yes, actually. I want to talk to you about Dub.”

      “Am I in trouble again?”

      “You tell me.” Jack offered a dramatic sigh and sat up. “Dub says you agreed to go for ice cream with him and his sisters, and that you’re going to let him ride Grace.”

      “I believe the operative word I used was maybe.”

      “There’s something you need to understand. While children pretend to understand maybe, the reality is that there is no ‘maybe’ in a child’s vocabulary,” Lucy said. “There is only ‘you promised’and ‘you lied.’”

  42. Michelle Lunsford

    So enjoyed reading this! I can relate to nearly every item on the list. I definitely read to relax; to disconnect from the daily grind and the pressures of those more complicated times in life. As an introvert, reading is a great opportunity to recharge my inner batteries, whether I am actually cuddled up alone on my sofa or reading in the midst of a large crowd of people.

  43. Julie Waldron

    I read to relax but mostly because my daughter’s read. I wasn’t much of a reader growing up(much to my mom’s displeasure 😉 ). I read here & there but probably just a handful of books a year, I always say I didn’t really like reading until I was 35. Our girls are 22 & 24 now and I read to them when they were little. I’m proud to say that they both LOVE to read! My youngest set a personal goal last year to read 200 books, she reached that goal but cut back to 150 this year LOL Reading’s fun and I can’t imagine not liking it.

  44. Jocelyn

    I love reading and have ever since I was a little girl. For now, it is my “take me away” therapy. I love getting lost in the lives of the characters.

    • See, Jodi, I was just saying that I knew there were magical unicorn readers out there who can read in the tub and not fry their Kindle or drown their paperback, I just hadn’t met one until now. Pleased to meet you.

  45. Melissa Breusch

    I plan to win giftcards so I can spend them on Kindle ebooks and then plan to beat my reading record from last year.

  46. /waving to Tina and Carrie/

    Hey ladies – GREAT post!
    I <3 Tina's books. With such a cover, surely this will be right along up there with the others.

    For me myself and I, books nearly always teach me something, whether reading for pleasure or information.

    Was glad to read that about PAPER books because I really do still have a difficult time with e-books. /sigh/

    As long as there are good writers out there, Tina among them, I'll keep reading.

    Carrie, I hope you're healed up and rarin' to go in 2018! Was so happy to at least meet you in person at The Art of Writing Conference in Nashville and to know that you are a Seeker also! Fantastic!

  47. Sabrina Templin

    I read to go to lands far away, *see* things I’ve never seen before and to broaden my horizons. This year I hope to read more often. 🙂

  48. Connie Saunders

    I was a ittle girl who was allowed to play with my brother and a neighbor boy when they saw fit during summer vacatoon so my friends were The Bobbsey Twins and Trixie Belden and later Nancy Drew. I enjoyed their adventures and I traveled right along with them. Reading still allows me to travel, to learn about different cultures and to experience visits to dude ranches and haunted houses. I can’t imagine my life without books! I really deserve a Nerdy Girl mug 🙂
    Blessings Tina and Carrie!

  49. Karen H

    I love historical romances best of all. I read them because they are set in a time period that was simpler, easier, than our present day rate race. That said, I would only like to read about it or if time travel was possible…visit but return home at bedtime! I left a book on my nightstand!

  50. Sunshine S.

    I read books as an escape and a stress relief! When I feel bogged down by life, I can instantly be transported into someone else’s world and be carried away for a little while. It gives my mind and body a rest so I can return to my responsibilities refreshed!

    • Another beautiful name. Sonnetta, that name should be on a book cover. Written by Sonnetta Jones. Lovely! 200 books divided by 52.177 weeks in a year is 3.83 books a year. WOW. You have time to read all my books. GO YOU!!!

  51. I am the opposite of Tina, moved from Arizona and now live in Western New York! I had a fight with the desert and the desert won!I love to read to escape my daily boring life! Haha

  52. Jasmine A.

    I read because I can’t NOT read. It’s not unthinkable, it’s just a non-thought. My plans for this year are to complete my public Goodreads reading challenge goal of 75 books, complete my personal/private goal of reading one more book this year than I did last year which I think is 153 or 154 books, and to take the time to read more non-fiction.

    • Jasmine, so good to “see” you again. Well, I have to agree, I MUST read more non-fiction this year. I’m partial to biographies, self-help and history. Okay, and those cookbooks and DYI books.

  53. You’re a reader. Your life is never boring, Linda. Mine is more boring if there was to be a queen of boring lives. I’m like Sandra Bullock in THE NET. I live in my office.

  54. Diana Lynn Montgomery

    I have always love to read! Growing up in country not much to do so I go to my room and lose myself into books! I had many journeys! Thankful to all authors who give us books to read and give us a journey in our life we not have ever had!

  55. Natalya Lakhno

    Hi Tina and Carrie! Tina, thank you for the list!
    I read because it calms me 🙂 However, it used to have an opposite effect on my husband LOL since he couldn’t sleep with the light on. The solution – Kindle 🙂

  56. Jenny

    Why do you read books? What are your reading plans for the New Year? — It’s the ultimate escape and your imagination knows no bounds in books. Well — I am stocking up for my cruise and I envision long days by the pool/on the beach with some “summer reading”.

  57. Kristina Kohler

    I read books for relaxation and a place to go to and pretend that I’m there. It gives me time for myself. Sometimes they make me cry, laugh and really get into the book I’m reading. It make me happy. I love to read.

  58. Lucy Reynolds

    Thank you for sharing your insight. I love to read because knowledge can’t be taken away and for an escape to places I would love to visit. My reading plans are to just enjoy what I’m reading.

  59. Debra E. Marvin

    “I can’t add anything intelligent to this conversation so I’ll just say Cowboys in Jeans”

  60. Lori! Thank you for taking the time to stop by and comment. Waving at you from Phoenix, Arizona where I need a fire and a cup of hot chocolate with my book tonight. It’s going to be 39 degrees!!!

  61. Carrie

    I read to visit new places, learn new things and just because I love a good story! I plan to read/listen 100 books this year.

  62. Janice Moore

    I should frame this list! Thanks! I read because I crave it! It enriches my life, and lets me experience places, time, people, thoughts and situations I would probably not be exposed to!

  63. Hi Janice. I agree. Sometimes…okay, sit down…sometimes I crave books more than chocolate. I hope no one will revoke my chocoholic status.

    What’s said in ReadingIsMySuperPower stays in ReadingIsMySuperPower. Right??

  64. Julie

    I love your 6 reasons for reading, and as I read them I thought, “yes, this is so true!” Reading is definitely a way to relax and reduce stress for me. Some days I have to be careful not to get absorbed in a book and get nothing else done. 🙂

    • Hi, Julie,

      Yeah, books versus housework..hmmm, that’s a tough one. But if you can learn how to clean a house in ten minutes you could read the rest of the time. The same is true of any chore. Or, you can listen on audio while no no that sounds wrong. Just plain wrong. Let’s not clean at all.

  65. Kristina Kohler

    I saw your book at the Library today. Reading gives me a place to go and be and there. It give my imagination a whirl.. it touches my heart and my emotions.

  66. Emmah

    I read to escape! And one of my reading goals is to read at least 75 books! Which I’ve got a good start to because I’ve read 10 books!

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