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Paul is trying to escape. He’s trying to escape from an Italian heritage that just doesn’t seem to have relevance for him any more, and he’s trying to escape from his nonno. They come from two different worlds, he and his grandfather, and Paul is more interesting his his own world – his friends, the girls, fast cars, go-carts – than Nonno’s strange and embarrassing behaviour.

Nonno is more than just a silly old man getting in the way of Paul’s lifestyle, though. Nonno has more stories to tell than Paul can even begin to imagine. But there is one big problem – Nonno is losing his mind.

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Comments on: "The Dons – Archimede Fusillo" (50)

  1. This is a great book, paul moving on from all the difficulties through life ~ moves on from his dad’s death and go into a new life, totally embarrassed of his grandpa to understanding that his Nonno worth much more that what he thought. i loved this book it totally relates to my life and i can totally understand that why paul is so embarrassed of his Nonno!! Archimede Fusillo is a good writer and should continue on with the story because “the Dons” has a bit of a bad ending and should continue the story. I would be interested to find out what happens next and I’m sure that other people would like to as well. I actually found this book really interesting because it portrays perfectly how teenage life, especially to do with family, can be difficult at times. It’s a great example of how italian teenages, who are born in Australia with Italian born relatives near by, deal with the daily stresses of normal teenage life along with trying to keep dignity in the family. Overall I would rate this book a 8 out of 10 and really recommend it for people who enjoy comedies and family sense books with a little bit of sadness.

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  2. thewanderer said:

    was a boring book. read in year 8 for English. if you have a thing for supernatural/fantasy/action/adventure DON’T READ. if you like Australian drama do read

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  3. Paul is trying to escape. He’s trying to escape from an Italian heritage that just doesn’t seem to have relevance for him any more, and he’s trying to escape from his nonno. They come from two different worlds, he and his grandfather, and Paul is more interested in his own world – his friends, the girls, the fast cars, the go-carts – than Nonno’s strange and embarrassing behaviour.

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  4. The Dons is about a 15 year old boy called Paul Taranto and a few years ago, his father was killed in a workplace accident. his Mother is taking care of Paul’s grandfather full time, and his mind is a bit out of it. One day Paul spots a girl that is new to his school, he ends up having a very fast moving relationship with her.

    I find that this book is great i love it and how it is written it really shows the difficulties that Paul has to go through if it is not one thing it is another, i think it is quite funny how he is embarrassed by his grandfather and it is just such a good book.

    i don’t really relate to anyone in the book but i have grandparent that speak a different language but they talk English most the time.

    i would rate this book a 7/10

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  5. Bianca said:

    what are all these people on about???? it was one of the worst books i have ever read!!! we had to read it for Year 9 english this year, it was horrible almost fell asleep whilst reading it. Some bits were okay, but definately wouldn’t recommend it to people. I guess i don’t like reading much but i’ve ready plenty of books better 😦 disappointing

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  6. I thought the ending in ‘The Dons’ was ok. it wasn’t happy, sad or unusual. I thought it was a little disappointing not being able know what exactly happened at the end of the book, and i thought that that let the book down at the end. overall i liked the book and the humorous character of Nonno. This book was good and a little heartbreaking at times. i would recommend this book because it has humorous moments and it has a good storyline about how you can never escape family.

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  7. Everything that Archimede Fusillo worked it up to be, has been ended terribly. I really enjoyed the book this week, from chapter 16 – until the final page. Yet the last sentence of the book, which is supposed to tie the whole of the book together, let it down. Apart from the end I found the story easy to follow and very well written. The story about Paul and his grandfather ‘ Nonno’ whose bond is continuously growing. Although Paul gets dumped by the girl of his dreams he learns the importance of family. His family which has many stories being told before they get lost in age. Nonno my favorite character reminds me of my own grandfather, a loving man who as he ages his memory disappears. This is a book I would recommend to all.

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  8. Such a disappointing ending! I thought his book would end at the school with paul’s oral. But instead it left me confused as the book doesn’t seem like it had actually ended. I wish that it had gone for much longer because I felt like we didn’t know anything that we had been hoping for. I really wanted to find out what happened next with paul and nonno and also with mum and constable movies.

    I wonder if the author has a sequel because i really want to read more about this story. I am really annoyed because I was finally getting into this book and not wanting to stop. I was actually putting off reading this book this week because i thought it would have a better ending.

    Overall this book was disheartening and not action packed.

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  9. Nazia said:

    can anyone tell me why paul and teresa relationship is important? Please someone tell me! I’m very desperate!

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  10. I read ‘The Dons’ I thought it was an interesting book it had all different thing in it, ‘The Dons’ was an emotional, funny the way nonno talks and how they talk about Pauls died father and they tell us how he died and i think a women the age of Pauls mum is still dating at her age and i think it is good for her and i didn’t like Tracey and i didn’t like the ending.

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  11. I have finished reading the book “The Dons”. I read it in literature circles with a group of 5 other girls. I found it extremely humorous and would recommend it anybody who was interested in a light hearted book. My favourite chracter was Nonno, as he had several childish habits, which made the book so funny. My favourite part of the book was when Nonno went missing, because it was really interesting and made me think as to where he might have gone to. I think that although Paul does get frustrated by Nonno’s weird habits, he still loves his family. We can see this as Paul gets really worried when Nonno goes missing, and puts a lot of effort into finsing him again! If I were Paul, I know that I would have been really worried as well. Altogether I really enjoyed this book, and would recommend anybody to read it.

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  12. I really enjoyed reading ‘The Dons’I thought that is was heart warming, funny and a great reminder of the importance of family. I loved Nonno’s character because he is so cute and naive. My favourite part of the book was when Paul told Tracey off for saying mean things about Nonno. It really showed that he loved Nonno despite all of the difficult situations Nonno has put him in. I also think that Teresa was a very strong character in the book. She loved Nonno and Paul so much and that was touching to read about. She was so caring and tolerant towards Nonno and Paul. My least favourite part of the book was when Zia Rita moved to Sydney. Not because I liked her character and wanted her to stay, but I felt sorry for Nonno to face the fact that his own daughter doesn’t want to live with him. I would recommend this book to anyone wanting to read a light hearted, heart warming stroy.

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  13. We have just finished reading this book for literature circles and i really enjoyed it. My favourite character was nonno because he had a great sense of humour. Zia rita is my least favourite character because she is so self centered and rude to nonno. This is a great book!

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  14. i have read the book ‘the dons’ for lit. circles. I recommend this book for basically everyone.
    This book is about paul and nonno’s life. Nonno has a strong accent!!

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  15. I read The Dons for Lit Circles and I really enjoyed the book because it was real about life and it also had funny parts. When we had to finish the book for the week and stop at a certain chapter I didn’t want to put the book down. My favourite character was Nonno because he is funny with his forgetfulness and his accent, sometimes he made me a bit upset because of his stories but I still like him as my favourite character.

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  16. I really enjoyed this book because it was about Nonno who had dementure and my grandpa had dementure so i can relate to him but i didnt live with him. It was like an adventure because many things were going on at one time. I really liked this book.

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  17. I read The Dons for Lit Circles, and I have just finished it. I thought it was a pretty good book to read, and I thought it got quite interesting. At the start, it was a bit boring but then it got better and I didn’t want to put it down. It was a great book and nonno was my favorite character, because he was so nice and sweet even though he was losing his mind.

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  18. I have read the book ‘The Dons’ for lit. circles this year. It is a great book and i would recommend it for almost everyone.
    The book is about Paul and his Nonno. Nonno suffers from dementia and is commonly mistaken to be back in Italy. Nonno still follows all the rituals which would have been done in Italy when he was growing up. It is a really great book and is definitely worth reading.

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  19. i have recently just finished reading ‘The Dons’ for literacy circles. i loved this book because it was very interesting and it really drew me in as a reader. this book is about a 16 year old boy named paul who is disagreeing and doesn’t want to live with his Nonno, but tends to get use to it and enjoys it. i would strongly recommend this book to people over 10 so they can understand the depth of the book.

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  20. I have just finished reading ‘The Dons’ for my literacy circles lessons, i liked this book because it had a good story line and sent a good message across. ‘The Dons’ is about a 16 year old boy called Paul who at first, is struggling to live with his nonno. The ending was a sad but happy ending.
    I would recommend this book to teenagers to to at least 21

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  21. I have just finished reading this book “the dons” for literacy circles, i though this book was great.. Nonno is really funny, i think he was the best character in the book. Paul and Nonno have a really good relationship with each other. This book was very inspirational and emotional. I would recommend this book for people 12 and over. I really enjoyed reading it.

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  22. I just finished reading The Dons and I think this is a good book for readers at the age of 11-16 or even higher. The book is about Paul, who is 16 and is trying to get away from his nonno. Nonno is old, and is losing his mind bit by bit. Paul’s nonno was alive during the war and keeps getting mixed up with the years. Paul also has trouble trying to get a girl of his dreams, Tracey Reynolds. Paul also has to get a hold of his mum who is trying her very best to protect him after his father death, 5 years ago. I recommend this book for all kids of the age of 11-16.

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  23. I have just finished reading The Dons. I thought this was a really good book for young readers. It was a good interesting book and I learnt a lot. It was about a 16 year old boy, Paul, who has family problems. Hes dad died 5 years ago and this is when he really needs him and misses him. He has to go through a lot of things including living with his Nonno who is losing his mind. I recommend this book to anyone who wants a quick interesting read and who can relate to this kind of story

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  24. I thought this book was a great read. When i first saw this book i thought it was going to be really boring and not a good read, but after reading the first few pages i was really enjoying it. This book really shows how much love there is from a Nonno to his grandson. I would recommend this book to people 10 years old and older.

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  25. At first I didn’t think the book was ll that good and had a couple of doubts but then I realized how good it really is. It’s really heart-warming. It was quite a sad book but showed the life of a Nonno and his grandson and together the bond they are able to share together and the love they have for one-another. Good read!

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  26. I have just finished this book, and man o’ man it was sad. I am really glad that Paul stood up for Nonno when he overheard Tracy and Magda bagging out Nonno. I really love this book and i would recommend it to anyone who wants to read a heartwarming story, about a boy and his grandfather who share an unbreakable bond of love and friendship.

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  27. the dons is an amazing book. I had my doubts for awile, but by the end i really enjoyed it. Nonno had a hard life, but he shared the consequences with Paul, so he learnt the life lessons as well. A 10/10 book and recommended for all ages except for young children, because of unnappropiate language and writing. Still, a REALLY good book that tells life’s stories

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  28. I have just finished this weird book. I have no idea what I have just read, no really. I think I was just looking at words going cross eyed and not know what I was doing, well most of the time I don’t know what I’m doing, but I think I was reading a book. I was left at the end of the book not knowing anything about this book. I herd so many funny things about the book and its a great book and everything, but when I red it, what book were they talking about. Well I’m sorry for the people who like this book but is it about anyway. Maybe I should ask the author what the book was about he should, he wrote it. Well I think you can tell that I didn’t like the book, at all, but you can read it for yourself and say what you think.
    SEEYA!!!

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  29. I have just finished this book, and what a book it was, I’m glad that Paul didn’t end up with Tracey, he deserves someone better than her, after all he has been through. I think that Nonno is a lovable old man, who has a surprising story about his life. This book has such a strong story line, and I can’t believe that Archimede Fusillo was able to write such an emotionally moving story, about his life as he grew up. Through the book all of the challenges that Paul faced, Nonno was always there to offer his help. I feel sorry for Nonno al that he has been through, war when he was young, the death of his wife, and dementia, but yet he is the kindess, sweetest, most generous person who is always willing to help. I was thrilled that Paul finally in the end started to appreciate all of the things that Nonno tried to do for him, after all he is his Nonno and great friend. I enjoyed reading this book, as it gave me a great insight into the life that some people live. I highly recommend it to anyone who likes a bit of a laugh, and an insight into other peoples interesting pasts. Through the book you experience funny moments, sad moments, and moments that have you reading them over and over. The dons was a good book that is very informative about the struggles in life for an old man who has been through a lot. If you are interested in reading humorous books that are difficult to put down I recommend you grab this book, and start reading.

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  30. the dons is a fantastic book, it is a book for a wide range of people. The dons shows a families side from all prospectives, a teenagers, and an adults. i really enjoyed reading it, there were so many moments were i wanted to and cry, nonno is such a cute character and all he wants to do is help paul with Tracey. i would recommend this to somebody who wants to read something different.

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  31. This week is the final week that I had to read to the end of the book. Paul smashes Nonno’s aftershave bottles, shattering his past and his memories of the people he loved and cared for. Paul stands up to his so-called-love because she was putting down Paul and Nonno. She said, “He probably wants me to babysit his grandfather.” Paul isn’t ashamed or embarrassed of his grandfather anymore. Zia Rita has gone to Sydney. It’s not because she wants to go, it is because she doesn’t want to see her father drift away from the world, she is running away. Nonno tells Paul of his previous life and of his grievances and about his singing pasts. Teresa has found a partner Wayne, or Constable Movies as Paul refers him to. Paul realises that his mother is still young and shouldn’t be stuck in the past, like her father. I would recommend this book to 13 – 14yrs olds, it is a book for mature people with a sense of understanding and a good sense of humour, it shares the stories and tales of a young boy, Paul and his grandfather and their lovable bond.

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  32. The dons was an enjoyable book to read. There were sad moments, humerous moments and moments that kept you thinking for days. It was a good book, but probably not great. I prefer books that are fantasy or romance, but i would recommend you to read it if you want something different to read once in a while. xx

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  33. a good book if you like to talk about feelings and stuff like that , wasn’t my cup of tea and i personally found it boring because i like action and guns and blood and stuff ….. if you like books like this then it is a must read but if you like fantasy STAY AWAY FROM THIS BOOK! because you will find it incredibly boring as in really really REALLLY boring!

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  34. The Dons…. It was a good book, well written but only read it if you like books about relationships. I myself kind of liked parts of it but I more like fantasy, action that sort of stuff. It was a bit of a bore but talk to Ruby if you want the good parts of it. Quite sad really in the cemetery and how his dad died by getting hit in the head with a whole lot of bricks…. bye

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  35. Paul Taranto is a teenage boy who has to share a room with his Nonno (grandfather). Paul and his mother are embarrassed by Nonno on a number of occasions because Nonno is getting alzhimas and can’t speak fluent english. This book is about relationships and feelings, which is not the kind of books i’m into so I did not enjoy this book very much, so if you like comedies or action packed books I would not recommend this book for you. I chose this book because we had the author come to school and inform us about the book and it sounded really funny and interesting when he was reading it but when i read it, it wasn’t what I expected.

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  36. For Lit Circles I read The Dons by Archie Fusillo. It was a much better book than I expected, about family, roots, bonds and mostly relationships. It was a sweet and funny novel of medium length which I think everyone would like if you give it a go. Paul is battling love and concern for his Nonno, with wanting to be cool, establish himself as a true Aussie and impress the new girl Tracey. Nonno, who is slowly losing his mind provides many funny stories but also insights from his interesting and troubled life. I loved this book because it was fresh, original and relatable. Read it!

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  37. he dons is a really great book and i really enjoyed it i would recomend this book to any one.
    the book is about a 15 year old boy paul Taranto and his elderly Nonno, Nonno has dementia and he believes that he is back in italy as a little boy he frequently recalls his past sharing the intricate details. this book has many emotions which make you feel the things the characters are feeling i think that anyone who decides to read this book will thoroughly enjoy it.

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  38. Paul Taranto is a 15 year old boy who shares a room with his Nonno. Nonno has dementia and is constantly believe he is back in Italy when he was a boy. Paul and his mother have to look after his grandfather. Paul lost his Father when he was 11 years old. This book gives you a variety of emotions, such as happines, laughter and even sadness. I really recommend it if you love funny and life changing stories. Read this book NOW!!!

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  39. I am so glad that i chose the Dons for lit circles. I believe the moral in this book is don’t judge a book by it’s cover. The characters in the book are exciting and interesting. The Author created a variety of characters, in which every-one who reads the book will fall in love with at least one. Every time I read a part of the book, i could not let the book go. It’s hilarious humor, the fantastic plot and the stories that Nonno tell are the best part of the book. I recommend this to every-one who loves a read and a book that you don’t want to put down!! READ THIS BOOK!!!

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  40. The dons has been one of the best books i have read I’ve enjoyed reading it a lot. The characters in the book are very funny and interesting to read about. Nonno especially was mainly what made the book so good, and there is always something that Nonno does that makes it harder for you to put the book down. The book is very realistic when it comes to what boys do as one of the characters Paul shows, and also some Italian traditions. Overall i recommend this book for anyone who wants a good laugh.

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  41. Recently I have just read The Dons and I really enjoyed it.
    The book is very funny and exciting, the characters that the author has created make the book interesting because even though they are all different from one another they all go together well.
    I would recommend this book to anyone that is in the mood to have a laugh.
    I am sad to think that Archimede Fusillo hasn’t made a sequel to The Dons but i’ll live.

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  42. ‘The Dons’ is a good book that can relate to the true world and is not a fantasy story which would seem unbelievable.
    Paul is a great character that has realistic problems.
    Nonno is a hilarious character and relates easily to real old people.

    i would recommend this book to all ages that enjoy a good chapter book.

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  43. I have just finished reading The Dons for literature circles in year eight. This book was extremely exciting and incredibly humorous. I would recommend this book to anyone who is interested in a good laugh and a quick funny read. There are many great parts in the book that I don’t think I would ever be able to choose my favourite part. I guarantee that if you dare to borrow this book you would never regret it.

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  44. Back again! Now I’m reviewing the book I chose (or second preference) for Lit. Circles this term. In a way I wish I hadn’t, only because this is such a great book and it was annoying to have to read it in such a dis-jointed way. But, maybe if I hadn’t I would never have read The Dons, and would have missed out on a great experience. The Dons is by Archimede Fusillo, the funny author who comes and talks to year levels each year, and helps out at English classes. This book is juct as funny as its creator, with many laugh-out-loud moments, but at the same time it’s very sad. the novel is about Paul, a young Australian teenager who is battling his love for his forgetful and erratic grandfather with his desparation to impress the hot new girl at his school. Nonno (his grandfather) is a sweet, funny man who is slowly but steadily losing his mind. Paul and his mother must care for him, assuring the neighbours that Nonno doesn’t mean the things he yells over the fence, and putting up with being called all sorts of names which remain in Nonno’s foggy memories. Inevitably, there are many entertaining stories peppered throughout this book, but they are also touching and sad. This is a great book to read, make sure you borrow it out from the library, or if you don’t read much, pick it for Lit Circles. Ta ta!

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  45. I read this book last year for lit circles. I really enjoyed this book and i found it hard to put down because it was funny and you could relate to it in your own way.This book is about a boy named paul who has to share his room with his nonno. He’s Nonno has dementure and sometimes thinks that he is in Italy. PAul is the typical boy who is interested in girls, cars and he loves gocarts. I love the way Nonno called Tracy a differnt name. I think that the bit when they go to the grave yard was really sad but it is a really funny book. My favourite character is Nonno and his shaving cream.
    Jess

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  46. i thought this was a really good book. i thought it was like looking for alibrandi because josie is trying to escape her italian heritage. in the dons paul lives with his nonno and mum. paul is interested in his friends, the girls, fast cars, gocarts. his nonno tries to tell him stories but the one problem is nonno is losing his mind. my favourite character is paul because he plays tricks on his nonno and learns to listen to his nonno’s stories.

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  47. The Dons has such a realistic storyline. It is an easy read and i would recommend it for anyone who is up for a laugh!

    I read this book last year for literature circles and i loved it!

    It is all about a boy called paul and his Nonno. This book reminded me a little of Joesephine Alibrandi and the way she is trying to understand all about the Italian culture. Nonno, paul and his mum all live together. Nonno is quite an old fragile man. He continuously tell the same story to paul because…..
    he is loosing his mind.

    This book is fantastic and i tink a ot more people will love it!!

    Milly

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  48. I had to read this book for Literature Circles last year, and i have to say this is one of the BEST books i have ever read. It tells the story so well about Paul, who like Josephine Alibrandi, is trying to understand about his roots as an Italian. His Nonno is living with Paula and his mum. Nonno is old and frail, and losing his mind, so he always tells the same story over and over again. Nonno is a very, very funny character because he does some of the strangest things that embarrass Paul, some of his friends even have a nickname for his Nonno.
    This is just an awsome book for anyone who is looking for a laugh and a fun, easy book.
    xx

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  49. really good family book and great for girls our age who are finding their roots! read this if you are unsure of what you want or who you are!

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