Build bookdown from pre-knitted markdown files

Dear all,

I am trying to use bookdown to collect large markdown files into a book format. Ideally, what I was considering doing is knitting each separate Rmd file and keeping the intermediate markdown files by adding keep_md: true to the yaml header of each Rmd file. I would then build the book with the intermediate markdown files. I thought this could be done with the "Knit and Merge" rendering approach (using bookdown::render_book("foo.Rmd", "bookdown::gitbook",new_session = TRUE)), as descirbed in

However, this still knits first each Rmd and then builds the book. Is there any way to just take the markdown files for building the book?

thanks for any help

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