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Songs As Books: Books For Kids

Looking for a list of the best children's books about songs as books?

Children’s literature has many notable options when it comes to songs as books. To help you find the right books for you and your young reader, we’ve compiled a list of the best kids books about songs as books.

Our list includes board books and picture books. Board books are best for babies and toddlers from ages newborn to 2 or 3. Picture books are generally great options for toddlers and for preschool and kindergarten age children. Picture books are especially enjoyable for adults to read aloud with young kids. You can filter to sort by the best book type for your kid.

When it comes to children’s stories about songs as books, there are a variety of titles. This list covers everything, from classics like Shoo Fly! to popular sellers like There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly to some of our favorite hidden gems like After the Fall (How Humpty Dumpty Got Back Up Again).

We hope this list of kids books about songs as books can be a helpful resource for parents, teachers, and others searching for a new book! As you explore the list, please comment below to let us know what books you would add.

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After the Fall (How Humpty Dumpty Got Back Up Again)
Written & illustrated by Dan Santat
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

From the New York Times–bestselling creator of The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend comes the inspiring epilogue to the beloved classic nursery rhyme Humpty Dumpty.

Everyone knows that when Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall, Humpty Dumpty had a great fall. But what happened after?

Caldecott Medalist Dan Santat’s poignant tale follows Humpty Dumpty, an avid bird watcher whose favorite place to be is high up on the city wall―that is, until after his famous fall. Now terrified of heights, Humpty can longer do many of the things he loves most.

Will he summon the courage to face his fear?

After the Fall (How Humpty Dumpty Got Back Up Again) is a masterful picture book that will remind readers of all ages that Life begins when you get back up.

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My Very First Mother Goose
Written by Iona Opie & illustrated by Rosemary Wells
picture book
Recommend Ages: 1-4

To a small child, words are magical. And the most magical of all are the beloved, venerable words of Mother Goose. Now folklorist Iona Opie has gathered more than sixty treasured rhymes in their most perfect, honest form. From “Hey Diddle, Diddle” and “Pat-a-Cake” to “Little Jack Horner” and “Pussycat, Pussycat,” these are familiar verses that have been passed from parent to child for generations; these are the rhymes that are every child’s birthright. With watercolors by Rosemary Wells that may prove equally enduring, MY VERY FIRST MOTHER GOOSE captures the simple joy and the sly humor that are the essence of Mother Goose. Parents and children will find themselves exploring this volume together, savoring delightful details and funny surprises on every page. This is a book that promises hours of quiet smiles and merry grins for readers of all ages.

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Old MacDonald Had a Truck
Written by Steve Goetz & illustrated by Eda Kaban
Thoughts from Mr. Staccato
This is a book I enjoy reading over and over again. It's a fun twist to the nursery rhyme that discusses the heavy machinery trucks that Old MacDonald has on his farm and the work they're doing to prepare for Mrs. MacDonald's upcoming leap! The illustrations are cute, but it's really the fun twist and attention to detail that makes this book enjoyable.
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Old MacDonald had a farm E-I-E-I-O. And on that farm he had a…TRUCK?! With a DIG DIG here and a SCOOP SCOOP there, this classic folk song just got revved up! Beloved machines—the excavator, dump truck, bulldozer, and more—will have the vehicle-obsessed of all ages reading and singing along.

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Puff, the Magic Dragon
Written by Peter Yarrow and Lenny Lipton & illustrated by Eric Puybaret
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-3

The adventures of a boy and his dragon friend are recounted in this classic song from the 1960s.

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There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly
Written & illustrated by Simms Taback
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

An old favorite as you’ve never seen it before! Everyone knows the song about the old lady who swallowed a fly, a spider, a bird, and even worse, but who’s ever seen what’s going on inside the old lady’s stomach? With this inventive die-cut artwork, Simms Tabak gives us a rollicking, eye-popping version of the well-loved poem.

Red Green Blue book
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My First Mother Goose book
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Old MacDonald Had a Farm book
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The Backwards Birthday Party book
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  • Red Green Blue - Mom of Boys -

    This is a cute book of colors. One can also spot some nursery rhyme characters being interwoven throughout the story. It is a fun combination in which you can point out both or either the color or the nursery rhyme for older children that may know those as well.

  • My First Mother Goose - From Humpty Dumpty and Georgie Porgie to Little Miss Muffet and the old woman who lived in a shoe, children will love reading and laughing along with all of their favorite characters. The accessible trim and beautiful illustrations by Tomie dePaola make this book the perfect addition to any child’s library.

  • Old MacDonald Had a Farm - Read along to the classic nursery rhyme “Old MacDonald Had a Farm” in this fun, padded board book. Moo, baa, and quack along with this adorably illustrated classic nursery rhyme about all the animals on Old MacDonald’s farm. This padded board book is perfect to take with you for story time fun!

  • The Backwards Birthday Party - Have a happy birthday—the backwards way! Full of fun and based on the hit song from Tom Chapin and John Forster, this is a celebratory birthday bash like no other. Put your clothes on inside out, heat up the ice cream, and hang on to your party hats—because everything’s out of whack at the backwards birthday party! From beloved, three-time Grammy-winning singer-songwriter Tom Chapin, four-time Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter John Forster, and with stunning illustrations from Chuck Groenink comes the zaniest birthday party you’ll ever attend.

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Lift Every Voice and Sing
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

First written by a schoolteacher and activist in 1900 and then declared the official African American National Anthem by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People in 1919, “Lift Every Voice and Sing” has been a cornerstone hymn chronicling the black experience for more than one hundred years. Lyrics to this moving history are paired with the linocuts of Elizabeth Catlett, a Harlem Renaissance artist best known for her unique representations of the struggles and triumphs of black men, women, and children. Newly back in print and updated with a fresh design as well as an introduction from beloved author and illustrator Ashley Bryan, Lift Every Voice and Sing is a more relevant than ever celebration of black lives.

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Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star
Written by & illustrated by Sylvia Long
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-15

In this tenderly illustrated edition of the classic rhyme, award-winning artist Sylvia Long touches the hearts of readers yet again. Her detailed watercolors depict a group of animal friends as they make their way home under the night sky to complete their bedtime rituals.

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With a Little Help from My Friends
Written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney & illustrated by Henry Cole
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Celebrate friendship with this lyrical picture book that beautifully illustrates John Lennon and Paul McCartney’s world-renowned words from “With a Little Help from My Friends.”

I get by with a little help from my friends…

In this gorgeously illustrated picture book, the universally loved words to “With a Little Help from My Friends” come vividly to life, showing that sometimes, all you need is a little help from your friends!

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Mother Goose's Pajama Party
Written by Danna Smith & illustrated by Virginia Allyn
Thoughts from Mom of Boys
This is such a great tale of classic nursery rhymes combined into a fun slumber party. There is something in it for everyone to love! They story flows along with one great line from many different rhymes and swirls into a magical journey of adventure and rhyming!
Thoughts from The Goodfather
Mother Goose's Pajama Party does such a nice job of tying together many classic fairytale stories. It's fun to see the diverse worlds and characters you know so well in their individual tales come together for Mother Gooses's party. The reprinting of the traditional stories is a fun bonus at the end.
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7

“Star light, star bright, Come to story time tonight. Bring your friends and don’t be late. Meet at my house, half past eight.” Mother Goose has invited all her nursery rhyme friends to her house for a magical sleepover. See the Cow that jumped over the moon, who tells the Dish, who tells the Spoon, who are soon joined by Little Bo Peep, Miss Muffet, Georgie Porgie, and a whole troop of other nursery time friends. What starts with a lively parade to Mother Goose’s house ends in a cozy goodnight scene featuring everyone’s favorite nursery rhyme characters, the ideal note for bedtime. Includes an afterword with all the classic nursery rhymes featured in the book, making it a true treasury.

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The Hugely-Wugely Spider
Written by Ethan T. Berlin & illustrated by Karl Newsom Edwards
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7

This funny and clever picture book, great for spring displays, is a twist on the classic Itsy-Bitsy Spider nursery rhyme.

The Classic Collection of Mother Goose Nursery Rhymes Oversized Padded Board Book book
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Hundred Feet Tall book
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Over in the Woodland: A Mythological Counting Journey book
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The Muffin Man book
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  • The Classic Collection of Mother Goose Nursery Rhymes Oversized Padded Board Book - Rediscover the timeless nursery rhymes of Mother Goose in this beautiful padded oversized board book format, packed with beautiful, full-color illustrations! Let the wonder begin! Tumble with Jack and Jill, jump with the cat and the fiddle, pick a pepper with Peter Piper, and rediscover the timeless nursery rhymes of Mother Goose, brought to life with new and vibrant illustrations by Gina Baek. This stunning and original oversized, padded board book will make a wonderful addition to every family library.

  • Hundred Feet Tall - Guess How Much I Love You meets Someday in this gentle read-aloud picture book that shows us that with just the right amount of care and support, even the smallest of seeds can grow to stand one hundred feet tall. Thanks for the love that you’ve shown me Right now I’m so very small But with water and light I will keep gaining height And then one day I’ll stand at a hundred feet tall Hundred Feet Tall is a tender ode to the power of unconditional, immutable love. Because no matter how small you are now, with patience and persistence, with encouragement and devotion, you, too, will someday grow strong.

  • Over in the Woodland: A Mythological Counting Journey - Over in the Woodland, where the mythic creatures roam, Lived a noble griffin pride that protects the Woodland home. “Guard,” said the mother. “We will guard every home.” So her young griffins flew where the mythic creatures roam. With gorgeously detailed illustrations and rhythmic text, Over in the Woodland is a magical adventure sure to capture the imagination of readers young and old. Based on the classic children’s rhyme “Over in the Meadow,” this version replaces frogs and birds with mermaids, dwarves, centaurs, and other creatures of the Woodland realm. Count from one phoenix to ten griffins, and find the adorable baby griffin hiding on each delightful page!

  • The Muffin Man - Do you know the Muffin Man? He makes lots of tasty treats in his popular bake shop. Sing and dance along as you follow him through his day, making muffins and feeding all of the hungry people right on Drury Lane. This hardcover library bound book comes with CD and online music access.

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The President Sang Amazing Grace
Written by Zoe Mulford & illustrated by Jeff Scher
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-7

Lyrical account of the day President Obama sang with a grieving nation following the 2015 shooting in a black church in Charleston, South Carolina When nine people were killed in a historic black church in Charleston, South Carolina, in 2015, the nation grieved as one, and when President Barack Obama sang “Amazing Grace” during his eulogy for Reverend Clementa Pinckney, it was acknowledged as one of the most powerful moments of his presidency. Singer/songwriter Zoe Mulford was so moved that she wrote the song “The President Sang Amazing Grace,” which was then illustrated by filmmaker and painter Jeff Scher for a video that has been viewed countless times. This book presents the lyrics to the song, Scher’s paintings, excerpts from Obama’s eulogy, biographies of those who were killed, historical context, and sheet music.

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Car, Car, Truck, Jeep
Written by Katrina Charman & illustrated by Nick Sharratt
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-5

This book is bursting with cars, buses, planes, trains, trucks, diggers—and many more Things That Go. And with a text set to the tune of Baa, Baa, Black Sheep, vehicle-obsessed little ones will never want to put this book down!

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Three Blind Mice Team Up with the Three Little Pigs
Written by Paul Harrison & illustrated by Mariano Epelbaum
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-7

The Big Bad Wolf keeps trying to eat the three little pigs. The farmer’s wife keeps chasing the three blind mice. If they work together, maybe they can solve each other’s problems.

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Hey Diddle Diddle
Written by Melissa Everett & illustrated by Mary Manning
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

“Hey Diddle Dilly, Its time to Get Silly, Like Mother Goose likes to do.” Spinning a creative and entertaining tale from the original rhyme, this Re-Versed Rhyme picture book is designed as a read aloud tale to inspire rhyming fun with early learners. Extension activities add layers of fun and engagement to the book.

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Mother Goose Numbers on the Loose
Written by & illustrated by Leo Dillon and Diane Dillon
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7

The numbers are on the loose—hiding and dancing, skipping and laughing through the rhymes of Mother Goose! It’s a good thing Caldecott Medal-winning artists Leo and Diane Dillon have helped gather up all these mischievous numbers in a stunning celebration of counting, rhymes, and imagination.

The rhymes, both familiar and lesser known, are ordered from simple (1, 2, 3) to more complex numbers, making this a collection to grow with. The illustrations are filled with surprising wit and whimsy. And this vibrant, playful volume is irresistible as an introduction to Mother Goose or as a new delight for her longtime fans.
Includes a note from the illustrators.

Mary Had a Little Glam book
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Rock-a-Bye, Dino book
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The Twelve Days of Christmas book
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The Cat in the Hat Songbook book
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  • Mary Had a Little Glam - Mary has STYLE! In this fun take on Mother Goose, fashion-forward Mary helps some childhood favorites go glam. From the kid who lives in a shoe (and dons some fab footwear) to Jack, who breaks his crown but gets a great new one, Mary’s friends look fine. But are they too well dressed for recess? Don’t worry—Mary always shows her flair for what to wear!

  • Rock-a-Bye, Dino - The classic lullaby, “Rock-a-Bye, Baby” gets a prehistoric twist as different dinosaurs get ready for bedtime in this board book with soft touch-and-feels on the cover! Rock-a-bye, T. rex, in the tree top When your feet stomp, the mountains do rock You give a big yawn, that means it’s nightfall So home you come, dino—claws, teeth, and all Written to the beloved tune of “Rock-a-Bye, Baby,” this adorable board book with soft touch-and-feels on the cover is a sweet bedtime lullaby that’s sure to put all sorts of dinosaurs—and children—to bed!

  • The Twelve Days of Christmas - The astounding talent of Laurel Long brings this beloved song to life with breathtaking style. Set against a lush countryside, each day brings a new gift elegantly rendered. And like in the verses of the song, the previous gifts are repeated in every illustration, giving this striking artwork a hidden aspect, culminating in a staggering spread featuring them all. Readers will pore over every page, searching for golden rings, turtledoves, and all the rest, secretly tucked into each stunning painting. Laurel Long’s unparalleled style makes this exquisite volume a treasure that will be cherished for years to come.

  • The Cat in the Hat Songbook - Sing along with this gem from Dr. Seuss! This classically wacky songbook with lyrics by Dr. Seuss and musical score by Eugene Poddany contains 19 unforgettable songs for the beginning singer. There are lively songs like “Plinker Plunker” and “The No Laugh Race,” bedtime songs like “Lullaby for Mr. Benjamin B. Bickelbaum,” and just plain silly songs like “Cry a Pint.” With a sturdy binding that opens flat for easy use, and simple piano and guitar arrangements, The Cat in the Hat Songbook is truly something to sing about! Available for a limited time with a 50th-anniversary burst printed on the front cover, this is an ideal gift for Seuss fans and music lovers!

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Sylvia Long's Mother Goose
Written & illustrated by Sylvia Long
picture book
Recommend Ages: 2-4

From bestselling artist Sylvia Long comes an enchanting collection of over seventy-five classic Mother Goose rhymes. Imbued with the artist’s love of nature and overflowing with charming details, this spectacular compilation includes such timeless favorites as Old Mother Hubbard, Mary had a little lamb, and Rock-a-bye baby. Sylvia Long’s Mother Goose is a perfect gift that, like the rhymes themselves, will be passed from one generation to the next

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We All Go Traveling By
Written by Sheena Roberts & illustrated by Siobhan Bell
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

A group of children use various modes of transportation to get to school, beginning with the familiar and friendly yellow school bus that goes “beep-beep-beep” and continuing on to introduce other colorful and noisy vehicles.

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Hey Diddle Diddle
Written & illustrated by Emma Schmid
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-6

Hey diddle diddle, The cat and the fiddle, The cow jumped over the moon. The little dog laughed to see such fun, and the dish ran away with the spoon! But what happens next? With new verses about piano playing pigs and chimps with cellos, the rhyming fun continues! Bouncy illustrations, innovative die cutting and popular rhymes make Books with Holes a must for every child. This is a board book edition.

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Do Your Ears Hang Low?
Written by Melissa Everett & illustrated by Andrea Doss
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-6

Do your ears hang low? Do they wobble to and fro? These bunnies will know! This classic childhood song paired with fun illustrations is sure to have you and your little one singing and laughing along during storytime!

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What Really Happened to Humpty?
Written by Jeanie Franz Ransom & illustrated by Stephen Axelsen
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

Detective Joe Dumpty rushes to investigate the mysterious circumstances under which his older brother, Humpty, fell from a wall on his first day as captain of the new Neighborhood Watch program.

Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star and Other Bedtime Nursery Rhymes book
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Hey Diddle Diddle and Other Nursery Rhymes book
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Star Light, Star Bright: A Mother Goose Bedtime Collection book
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The Wheels on the Dump Truck book
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  • Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star and Other Bedtime Nursery Rhymes - An illustrated collection of twenty familiar nursery rhymes and lullabies, such as “Are You Sleeping?,” “Hey Diddle Diddle,” and “All Through the Night.”

  • Hey Diddle Diddle and Other Nursery Rhymes - “Hey, diddle, diddle, The cat and the fiddle, The cow jumped over the moon…” Experience classic nursery rhymes in this beautifully illustrated board book. With adorable illustrations alongside modern typography of classic childhood rhymes, this book is both a great baby shower gift and a lovely introduction to the nursery rhymes we know and love.

  • Star Light, Star Bright: A Mother Goose Bedtime Collection - Just in time for the holidays, this padded board book features original illustrations and your favorite Mother Goose rhymes Filled with lovely artwork, this is a padded board book treasury of the most popular bedtime Mother Goose rhymes. This soothing collection will whist every toddler off to dreamland. The rhymes include: • Twinkle Twinkle • Star Light, Star Bright • Hickory Dickory Dock …and more!

  • The Wheels on the Dump Truck - From the author of the beloved Itsy Bitsy board book series comes a construction site adventure all about construction vehicles. An action-packed yet adorable story, The Wheels on the Dump Truck is the third book in a new series that is perfect for parents and little ones who love things that go. Follow dump trucks, bulldozers, excavators, and more as cute animal workers build, build, build!

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Indestructibles: Row, Row, Row Your Boat
Written by Maddie Frost & illustrated by Amy Pixton
picture book
Recommend Ages: 0-2

Baby’s favorite book series (rip-proof, drool-proof, and nontoxic—designed for the way babies “read” with their mouths) now features one of baby’s favorite songs, with all the lyrics!

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Indestructibles: The Itsy Bitsy Spider
Written by Maddie Frost & illustrated by Amy Pixton and Maddie Frost
picture book
Recommend Ages: 0-2

Baby’s favorite book series (rip-proof, drool-proof, and nontoxic—designed for the way babies “read” with their mouths) now features one of baby’s favorite songs, with all the lyrics!

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Five Little Ducks
Written by Annie Kubler & illustrated by Penny Ives
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-3

All children love this traditional rhyme and singing along will help to develop number skills. Bouncy illustrations, innovative die cutting and popular rhymes make Books with Holes a must for every child. Available in three formats, suitable for babies, toddlers, pre-schoolers and the nursery or classroom.

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The Croaky Pokey!
Written & illustrated by Ethan Long
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Put your right hand in, Put your right hand out, Put your right hand in, And wave it all about, Hop the Croakey Pokey. As flies buzz all around, Right in the froggy’s mouth!

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She'll Be Coming 'Round the Mountain
Written & illustrated by Anne Passchier
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-6

She’ll be coming round the mountain, when she comes. Toot, Toot! How will she arrive next? Featuring a range of vehicles, activities and sounds, this catchy song is a delightful way to learn new words. Bouncy illustrations, innovative die cutting and popular rhymes make Books with Holes a must for every child. Board book edition.

Shoo Fly! book
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  • Shoo Fly! - In this illustrated version of a familiar song, a mouse tries to get rid of a pesky, unwanted playmate.

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