The Wolf's Curse Virtual Blog Tour, Review and Giveaway

Thursday, September 23, 2021

The Wolf’s Curse 
Written by Jessica Vitalis 
Ages 8+ | 336 Pages 
Publisher: Greenwillow Books | ISBN-13: 9780063067417 

Publisher’s Synopsis: Twelve-year-old Gauge’s life has been cursed since the day he witnessed an invisible Great White Wolf steal his grandpapá’s soul, preventing it from reaching the Sea-in-the-Sky and sailing into eternity. When the superstitious residents of Bouge-by-the-Sea accuse the boy of crying wolf, he joins forces with another orphan to prove his innocence. They navigate their shared grief in a journey that ultimately reveals life-changing truths about the wolf—and death. Narrated in a voice reminiscent of The Book Thief, this fast-paced adventure is perfect for fans of fantasy such as The Girl Who Drank the Moon and A Wish in the Dark

Available for purchase on AmazonBookshop.orgHarper Collins.

Jessica Vitalis is a full-time writer with a previous career in business and an MBA from Columbia Business School. An American ex-pat, she now lives in Canada with her husband and two daughters. For more information, visit

The Wolf's Curse was a phenomenal read. The story reminded me of a fairy tale with some fantasy and lessons intertwined. The story draws you in through the wolf's perspective and with each page you get to understand the wolf, the boy and the residents of Bouge-by-the-Sea. The author tackles grief and afterlife beliefs in an interesting and highly imaginative way. The characters were engaging and interesting. I felt like this story was just really well-done from beginning to end. There's a great beauty to this story and the writing. The only thing I disagree with is the recommended age. The story handles concepts that an eight year old can read, but I think kids need to be a little more mature to read this story. This story is something that upper Elementary, Middle Schoolers and teens will enjoy. This book could also generate some interesting discussion in a classroom setting. The Wolf's Curse was masterfully written and I can't wait to see what the author has in store for us next.

Enter for a chance to win a hardcover copy of The Wolf's Curse

Five (5) winners receive: 
  •  A hardcover copy of The Wolf’s Curse 

The giveaway begins September 21, 2021, at 12:01 A.M. MT and ends October 21, 2021, at 11:59 P.M. MT. 

This post is in partnership with The Children’s Book Review and HarperCollins Children’s Books. I received a free copy of this book, however, this is my honest opinion.

Greta Grace Virtual Book Tour, Review, and Giveaway

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Greta Grace: A Greta Grace Gibson Story About Bullying and Self-Esteem
 Written by Joanna Quinn
Ages 9+ | 190 Pages
Publisher: Emerald Lake Books | ISBN-13: 9781945847448

Publisher’s Synopsis:
What’s worse than being invisible? Being noticed by the school bully.
Greta Grace likes her life. She isn’t the most popular girl in school-some days she even feels invisible-but she gets good grades and stays out of trouble. She has a best friend in Samantha and a grandmotherly neighbor who is never too busy for a chat. Her mom can be a bit overprotective, but Greta Grace doesn’t blame her. Being a single parent probably isn’t the easiest job in the world. When her longtime crush finally starts noticing her, Greta Grace thinks her life might even be perfect. But when a merciless bully takes aim at Greta Grace, her carefree existence suddenly ends. Who ever knew that school could be so hard?

Available for purchase here and here.


Joanna O’Reilly Quinn can usually be found learning something new to teach teens. As a former middle school teacher, founder of Super Empowered One, and life coach, it is no surprise that her middle-grade fiction book, Greta Grace, weaves some teachable moments into her character’s very relatable experiences. Think, middle school… Ahhh!

Through her company, Super Empowered One, Joanna teaches kids how to access their confidence, happiness and power, so they can live their best life. Joanna loves writing, the ocean, a good run, and living in Fairfield, Connecticut, with her husband and two kids. Visit her at to learn more about her coaching services and Greta Grace.

If you’re interested in having Joanna conduct a program for your group or come speak to your students, you can contact her at and

Greta Grace: A Greta Grace Gibson Story About Bullying and Self-Esteem dives into the world of drama amongst teens dealing with jealousy, friendships, bullying, insecurity, troubles with friendships, miscommunication, and more. Greta Grace turns to the adults in her life for advice and help on dealing with her troubles. The adults help her come up with solutions or ways to deal with her problems: meditating, talking it out, positive affirmations, going to the school authorities. I like that the book shows a way for teens to handle their problems and shows Greta Grace using coping mechanisms. I think it would help teens that are dealing with similar issues to know what to do and who to go to for advice and help. Parents, teachers, and counselors can use this book in the classroom or at home to help discuss how to deal with bullying and other troubles in middle school. There are even discussion questions in the back. The only thing that bothered me about the book was the descriptors for the bully with red hair was uncomfortable, but I think that could also be used in a discussion as a talking point as well. Overall, the book deals with bullying and self-esteem that middle schoolers can relate to and help them realize that there are tools that they can use to help them.


Enter for a chance to win a copy of Greta Grace, along with a 1-hr coaching session for a parent on how to raise a super-empowered teen.

One (1) grand prize winner receives:
  • A copy of Greta Grace
  • A 1-hr parenting coaching session with Joanna Quinn
Four (4) winners receive:
  • A copy of Greta Grace

The giveaway begins September 20, 2021, at 12:01 A.M. MT and ends October 20, 2021, at 11:59 P.M. MT.

Greta Grace Giveaway 

This post is in partnership with The Children’s Book Review and Emerald Lake Books. Please note that I received a free electronic version to review, however, I shared my honest opinion.

Five Kisses Review

Thursday, September 16, 2021

The first kiss crumbles her world. The second mystifies. The third unbalances. The fourth sends her reeling. And the fifth –ah, the fifth . . .

Inspired by Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew, Miss Sarah Meacham has always behaved circumspectly, until an emotional outburst directed at a well-deserved gentleman earns her the nickname of Miss Shrew. As a result, she vows to never trust—or love—again. But when her father decrees that her younger sister cannot marry the man of her dreams until Sarah has secured a suitor of her own, she is faced with a dilemma: Deny her sister marital bliss or feign an interest in the next gentleman to come along, at least until their father relents.

Mr. Ian Collum is no gentleman. A tradesman and newcomer to Brighton, he has been searching high and low for the perfect house. When he at last discovers Ivy Cottage, with its magnificent views, extensive lands, and a large oak tree reminiscent of his favorite childhood escape, he will do whatever it takes to obtain it. Trouble is, the owner of the property will only sell if Ian agrees to court the beautiful and infamous Miss Shrew—a woman as intent on eluding Ian as he is on pursuing her.

I loved Five Kisses, a retelling of Taming of the Shrew, by Rachel Anderson. Five Kisses tells the story of the Taming of the Shrew in a regency setting. I love the scenes that shared "Miss Shrew's" background and development of her character. The scenes of the story really come alive with memorable events and actions from the characters. The characters in the story are well-rounded and interesting. The story was a fun read, relaxing, and had some very clever parts. It was a fun read that I would recommend checking out and adding to your TBR pile. Click here to learn more.

Please note that I received a free copy to review, however, this is my honest opinion. This post also contains affiliate links that help support this blog.

Fragments Virtual Book Tour and Giveaway

Tuesday, September 14, 2021


Fragments: Journeys from Isolation to Connection 
Written by Maura Pierlot 
 Ages 12+ | 126 Pages 
 Publisher: Big Ideas Press | ISBN-13: 978-0645099805 

I feel like I’m a piece, a fragment that’s missing all the good bits, but I don’t know where to find the rest … the parts I need to work properly. I bet they wouldn’t fit anyway. (Lexy, age 17) Publisher’s Synopsis: Eight young people navigating high school and beyond, each struggling to hold on – to family, to friends, to a piece of themselves. Perhaps you know them. The bubbly girl who keeps telling you she’s okay. The high achiever who’s suddenly so intense. The young teen obsessed with social media. The boy challenged by communication. Every single day they, and others, are working hard to keep it together. So hard, they don’t see their friends are struggling, too. Through eight imagined stories, Fragments moves from a place of disconnection to connectedness. 

The action of Fragments takes place in the minds and hearts of an ordinary group of young people. Their stories encompass anxiety, depression, neurodivergence, gender dysphoria, social media, bullying, family dysfunction, cross-cultural diversity, and more, culminating in a sense of hope. Although set in Australia, their stories could take place anywhere. 

From the Playwright
Rarely presenting as neat packages, mental health issues often involve feelings and behaviors with jagged edges and blurred origins. Fragments embodies the theme that stress at home, at school, and in life is challenging young people beyond their usual coping abilities, leaving them disenfranchised and vulnerable. So much of adolescent life is spent looking inwards that it’s perhaps not surprising that mental health issues are often internalized. I wrote Fragments to start a conversation. It’s only when we speak openly about mental health issues – without fear or judgment – that we can chip away at the stigma that prevents many people from seeking help. It is my hope that the work will find its way into schools in Australia and overseas. The publication includes a comprehensive Study Guide, detailing activities and curriculum links for English, Drama/Arts, Health & PE, Civics, and more. A powerful and timely mental health resource for young people and their families. Essential reading for high school. 

Available for purchase on  Amazon, and Book Depository.

Maura Pierlot is an award-winning author and playwright who hails from New York but has called Canberra, Australia home since the early 1990s. Her writing delves into complex issues including memory, identity, self, and, more recently, mental health. Following its sellout 2019 season in Canberra, Maura’s debut professional theatre production, Fragments is being adapted for the digital space, supported by arts ACT. The work is published online by Australian Plays Transforms and in print by Big Ideas Press. 

Maura is a past winner of the SOLO Monologue Competition, Hothouse Theatre for her play, Tapping Out. Her plays have been performed in Melbourne, Canberra, Sydney, Brisbane, and Hollywood. A former medical news reporter and editor of Australian Medicine, Maura also writes for children and young adults. In 2017 she was named winner of the CBCA Aspiring Writers Mentorship Program, and recipient of the Charlotte Waring Barton Award, for her young adult manuscript, Freefalling (now True North). Maura’s debut picture book, The Trouble in Tune Town won the 2018 ACT Writing and Publishing Award (Children’s category) along with international accolades. 

Maura’s poetry, short stories, microfiction, and essays appear in various literary journals and anthologies. Maura has a bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, and doctorate, each in philosophy, specializing in ethics. When she’s not busy writing, Maura visits schools and libraries as a guest reader and speaker, serves as a Role Model for Books in Homes, and contributes reviews for the Children’s Book Council of Australia’s online magazine, Reading Time. 

For further information on Maura and her work, Fragments please visit: and

I felt like the play Fragments was very artistically done. The story itself is told in fragments of teens' lives and they feel broken like a fragment. I liked the idea of telling the story like the feelings of the characters. It's an interesting concept and idea. The story is modern and something that teen's can relate to with either themselves or friends that are handling complex and difficult issues in trying to figure out their place and to deal with mental health issues. This is a play that can easily help jumpstart conversations in the home and classroom. I also liked that the book had discussion points in the back. I feel like this could be a helpful tool and it helps adults to realize some of the issues that teens face in today's world. I think the play would be interesting to read out loud in a classroom as a reader's theater or to see performed. The "brokenness" and the "fragments" and the healing would come across more if you could hear different voices speaking the different parts. It was an interesting piece of literature and well-written. It would be interesting to see what the playwright does next.

Enter for a chance to win a copy of Fragments and a $50 Amazon gift card! 

One (1) grand prize winner receives: 
  •  A copy of Fragments 
  •  A $50 Amazon gift card 

 Four (4) winners receive: 
  •  A copy of Fragments 

The giveaway begins September 6, 2021, at 12:01 A.M. MT and ends October 6, 2021, at 11:59 P.M. MT.

This post is in partnership with The Children’s Book Review and Big Ideas Press.

Brides and Brothers Blog Tour and Giveaway

Friday, September 10, 2021


A modern retelling of Seven Brides for Seven Brothers.

Camille Kelly is in real danger of becoming an old maid—at least by Cherish, Montana, standards. She has all but given up on finding Mr. Right—until her broken laptop leads her to Aiden Peterson, a tall, dark, and handsome computer genius. Camille would never have believed her magic moment was right around the corner, but after two whirlwind weeks, she has a ring on her finger and has happily ever after in sight. However, she soon discovers Aiden is part of a daunting package deal...

As the eldest of seven brothers, Aiden has never had a problem living under the same roof as his rambunctious siblings. When he falls for Camille, he is confident she’ll fit right into his family’s already bursting home. He thought wrong. Aiden and Camille’s storybook romance comes to a screeching halt when she discovers her new living situation. Not willing to submit to a life mothering a bunch of grown men, Camille has only one option: she embarks on a campaign to improve her new brothers-in-law and marry them off. And what better candidates for wives than her own best friends?

Check out the link here to read/preview the first few chapters! 

About the Author  
Anneka is an award-winning author who writes all things romance. She graduated from Brigham Young University-Idaho with a Bachelor's degree in English and History. She is a wife, mother of five, and believer in happy endings. 

Seven Brides for Seven Brothers was one of the first mother/daughter movie that I watched with my mom when I was twelve. It was also my introduction to musicals. I also enjoy Anneka Walker's novels especially Love in Disguise and Refining the Debutante. Needless to say, I was excited to read the retelling in Brides and Brothers by Anneka Walker and jumped on the chance to be a part of the blog tour. The retelling follows the major scenes in the  musical but in a modern and modernly acceptable way that doesn't end up breaking any laws or causing the FBI to step in.  Most of the major scenes are retold, however, the characters and the approach are fresh and original. It's a cute and fun romantic comedy. I did feel like some of the Christian elements felt a little forced rather than a natural flow, but sometimes in real-life conversations it seems a little forced too. All of the characters stood out, were likable and had their own personalities, which was masterfully done considering how many characters were in the book. This story was very well written and you see the strength in Anneka Walker's writing ability in this book. I would recommend checking it out and adding it to your TBR pile. To learn more, click here.

Please note that I received a free copy of this book to review, however, I provided my honest opinion. Please note that this post contains affiliate links that help support this blog. This post is in cooperation with Anneka Walker and Covenant Communications.

The Slow March of Light Book Review

Thursday, September 9, 2021

About the Book
Based on a true story. Inspired by real events.

A riveting and emotionally-gripping novel of an American soldier working as a spy in Soviet-occupied East Germany and a West German woman secretly helping her countrymen escape from behind the Berlin Wall.

In the summer of 1961, a wall of barbed wire goes up quickly in the dead of night, officially dividing Berlin. Luisa Voigt lives in West Berlin, but her grandmother lives across the border and is now trapped inside the newly- isolated communist country of East Germany. Desperate to rescue her grandmother and aware of the many others whose families have been divided, Luisa joins a secret spy network, risking her life to help bring others through a makeshift, underground tunnel to West Germany. Their work is dangerous and not everyone will successfully escape or live to see freedom.

Bob Inama was an outstanding university student, with plans to attend law school when he is drafted into the US Army. Stationed in West Germany, he is glad to be fluent in German, especially after meeting Luisa Voigt at a church social. As they spend time together, they form a close connection. But when Bob receives classified orders to leave for undercover work immediately, he does not get the chance to say goodbye.

With a fake identity, Bob's special assignment is to be a spy embedded in East Germany. His undercover job will give him access to government sites to map out strategic military targets. But Soviet and East German spies, the secret police, and Stasi informants are everywhere, and eventually Bob is caught and sent to a brutal East German prison. Interrogated and tortured daily, Bob clings to any hope he can find from the sunlight that marches across the wall of his prison to the one guard who secretly treats him with kindness to the thought of one day seeing Luisa again.

Author Heather B. Moore masterfully alternates the stories of Bob and Luisa, capturing the human drama unique to Cold War Germany as well as the courage and the resilience of the human spirit.

About the Author
Heather B. Moore is a USA Today best-selling and award-winning author of more than seventy publications. She has lived on both the east and west coasts of the United States, including Hawaii, and attended school abroad including the Cairo American College in Egypt, and the Anglican School of Jerusalem in Israel. She loves to learn about history and is passionate about historical research. 

The Slow March of Light captures East and West Germany after World War II and mixes a true story with fiction. The true story part of this story was amazing to read and I felt like the fictional element helped show what life was like for Germans. This story was a fascinating read. It was really interesting and I really enjoyed reading it. I recommend reading the author's notes in the back as well. This book was well-written, well-researched and made history seem to come alive within the pages. It was easy to read and quite the page turner. I recommend checking it out. To learn more about The Slow March of Light, click here.

 Advance Praise
“Moore conveys extensive historical knowledge without sacrificing the emotional impact of the stories of two protagonists whose Christian faith helps them survive and make a difference in the face of epic adversity.” —Booklist 

 “Outstanding novel is a harrowing account based around actual events. The author chillingly and graphically captures daily existence where the controlling political party, national security apparatus, and media work together to crush all dissent. A timely and cautionary tale. My highest recommendation.” —Historical Novel Society 

Launch Bundle
Purchase a copy of The Slow March of Light between September 6-11 and everyone who submits a copy of their receipt and fills out the form here during the week of September 6-11 will receive the Slow March of Light Swag Bundle.

Please note that I received a free copy to review, however, this is my honest opinion. Please note that this post also contains affiliate links. This post is in cooperation with Shadow Mountain Publishing.

The Matchmaker's Lonely Heart Book Review

Wednesday, September 8, 2021

About the Book
Amelie Hampton is a hopeless romantic, which makes her the perfect columnist to answer lonely heart letters in The Marriage Gazette. When Amelie plays matchmaker with two anonymous lonely hearts, she also decides to secretly observe the couple’s blind date. To her surprise, the man who appears for the rendezvous is Harold Radcliffe—a grieving widower and a member of Amelie’s book club.

Police detective Michael Baker has been struggling ever since his best friend and brother-in-law dies in the line of fire. Because he knows the dangers of his job, he has vowed never to marry and subject a wife and family to the uncertainty of his profession. But when he meets Miss Hampton, he is captured by her innocence, beauty, and her quick mind.

When a woman’s body is pulled from the river, Michael suspects the woman’s husband—Harold Radcliffe—of foul play. Amelie refuses to believe that Harold is capable of such violence but agrees to help, imagining it will be like one of her favorite mystery novels. Her social connections and clever observations prove an asset to the case, and Amelie is determined to prove Mr. Radcliffe’s innocence. But the more time Amelie and Michael spend together, the more they trust each other, and the more they realize they are a good team, maybe the perfect match.

They also realize that Mr. Radcliffe is hiding more than one secret, and when his attention turns toward Amelie, Michael knows he must put an end to this case before the woman he loves comes to harm.

About the Author
NANCY CAMPBELL ALLEN is the award-winning author of eighteen published novels and several novellas, which encompass a variety of genres, ranging from contemporary romantic suspense to historical fiction. Her most recent books, which include Regency, Victorian, and steampunk romance, are published under Shadow Mountain’s Proper Romance brand, and the What Happens in Venice novella series is part of the Timeless Romance Anthology collection published by Mirror Press. She has presented at numerous conferences and events since her initial publication in 1999.

Nancy loves to read, write, travel, and research, and enjoys spending time with family and friends. She nurtures a current obsession for true crime podcasts and is a news junkie. She and her husband have three children, and she lives in Ogden, Utah, with her family, one very large Siberian Husky named Thor, and an obnoxious but endearing YorkiePoo named Freya.

Advance Praise
“Allen pairs a matchmaker and a detective in this charming Victorian romance. Allen expertly combines mystery and romance into a fast-paced tale complete with plenty of surprises and a central relationship founded on mutual admiration and respect. Readers are sure to appreciate the strong, well-shaded heroine and twisty plot.” —Publishers Weekly

“Allen's chaste tale of Victorian romantic suspense will also appeal to historical mystery readers, and it would be great for mother-and-daughter reads. This has great appeal for teens who like historical fiction laced with mystery and romance.” —Booklist

“Michael and Amelie's slow-burning romances combines well with the fast-paced tale of surprise, death, and heart. The core of the story is their relationship; it builds from a place of admiration and respect, and eschews any forced obstacles to being together. Amelie is a nuanced heroine who is both naïve and fierce as she gathers her knowledge of fictional crimes and joins Michael in his off-duty undercover work. And the endearing secondary cast of friends and coworkers results in humor and warmth; they support Amelie's headstrong nature and Michael's softening heart. Charming...combines a Victorian murder mystery with an endearing romance between two souls.” —Foreword Reviews

The Matchmaker's Lonely Heart took me a little while to get into, but once I was hooked it became quite the page turner that I couldn't stop reading. The story is a Victorian-era historical fiction with romance, mystery, and suspense. The author sets up the crime and the suspect, but reels you in with trying to figure out the motive, if the criminal's going to get caught and what will happen next. The story was clean and it's a book teens and adults would enjoy reading. The characters were interesting and likable. It was overall a fun, entertaining and suspenseful read. It also almost seemed like a beginning of the series. The author left room to continue into another book with some of the side characters as leads. It would be interesting to see what the author comes up with next. It's worth checking out. Click here to learn more.

Please note that I received a free copy to review, however, this is my honest opinion. Please note that this post also contains affiliate links. This post is in cooperation with Shadow Mountain Publishing.

Missing Okalee Review

Monday, September 6, 2021


About the Book
When compared to her nearly perfect little sister, Phoebe Paz Petersen feels she doesn't measure up in her parents’ eyes. Okalee is smart and beloved for her sunny disposition, but if Phoebe can get picked for the coveted solo in the school choir, she’ll stop being a middle-school nobody and finally get her chance to shine.

The sisters have one very special, secret tradition: River Day—when they hold hands and make their way across the cold, rushing Grayling River to celebrate the first hint of spring. This year’s River Day crossing, however, goes horribly wrong, and Phoebe’s world is suddenly turned upside down.

Heartbroken and facing life without Okalee, Phoebe is more determined than ever to sing the solo in the school concert as a way of speaking to her sister one last time. But Phoebe’s so traumatized by what happened, she’s lost her beautiful singing voice.

Kat Waters wants the solo for herself and is spreading a terrible rumor about what really happened to Okalee on River Day. If Phoebe tells the truth, she fears her family will never forgive her and she may never get to sing her goodbye to Okalee.

About the Author
LAURA OJEDA MELCHOR is from Montana and grew up in a Spanish-speaking home that celebrated her family’s Cuban culture. She is a self-described bookworm who graduated with an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts. She lives in Alaska with her husband and son.

Visit Laura online at
Instagram: @lauraojedamelchor
Facebook: Laura Ojeda Melchor, MFA
Twitter: @lauraomelchor
TikTok: @lauraojedamelchor

Advance Praise
“Touching and poignant. Melchor weaves Phoebe’s story of forgiveness and family into a gripping tale of love and loss.” —Terry Catasús Jennings, author of the Definitely Dominguita series

“Melchor combines grief with guilt for an emotionally intense story about Phoebe, whose sister drowns in a river...Captures the pressures of being an older sister and the unique challenges of losing a sibling. As her perspective matures, Phoebe authentically struggles to imagine other people complexly, leaving plenty of room for significant self-exploration. Meanwhile, many readers will identify with her passion for self-expression through singing. Accessible prose mixed with a candid look at death makes this likely to be popular with reluctant readers. For fans of Jude Banks, Superhero (2021) and other serious middle-grade novels with heart, this is a solid addition to any collection.” —Booklist

Missing Okalee was a hard book to read...I just wanted to reach within the pages and help Phoebe. For such a young age, Phoebe deals with a lot...her sister's death, dealing with guilt, dealing with bullying and trying to find a support system outside of her family. Phoebe felt left out before her sister's death and after there was no one to really to watch out for her. There wasn't a supportive family. One of her best friends avoid her and she's bullied while she's dealing with a hard situation. The tragedy wasn't only in the sister's death, but in the treatment of Phoebe by the parent's and her peers. This book might be a good one for parent's to read as well as youth. For parents, it teaches that you need to be aware of your kids and let them feel the measure of your love. This will help youth to learn to build empathy and want to reach out to those that need support. I feel like this book could generate a good discussion in a classroom, book club or with a parent and youth. Even though this book is heartbreaking, there are many good lessons to be learned and to be gained by reading it. To learn more, click here.

Please note that this post contains affiliate links that help support this blog. I received a free copy to review, however, I provided my honest opinion.

September Giveaways (low to moderate entry)

Wednesday, September 1, 2021


I like entering low to moderate entry giveaways and I share each month some of the blog or social media giveaways I've entered, thought someone else might be interested in entering or that have been submitted to me through bloggers. Check back often throughout the month to see if I have posted more giveaways. If you are hosting a family-friendly giveaway on your blog and would like to see it listed here, please contact me (via email). If you have a won a giveaway that I posted, please leave a comment and share that you won.

$75 Omaha Steaks Gift Card (ends 9.20.21)

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