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Staff picks on display in the Bookworm of Edwards.

 According to a report from NBC News, a want to read more frequently finds itself near the top of the list for hopeful New Year's Resolution-makers, and in 2017, that want was no different than in years past. It's now March, and how many of us can say that we picked up the pace of our reading habit? If you're anything like me, it's not as much the time commitment or the price that holds you back from picking up -- and reading -- a book (if price is an issue, access to libraries around the county is a feasible means to meet your bookish goals), but that it's hard to find a good book to really lose yourself in -- you know, one of those books that evokes a genuine sense of mourning when you finish the final sentence of the final chapter. Luckily for us ambivalent title browsers, the Bookworm of Edwards employs a team of voracious readers who are ready and willing to plow through the stacks and dish on their favorites all in an attempt to give us a glimmer of literary inspiration. These are their top picks for the month of March:

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The Rules Do Not Apply: A Memoir by Ariel Levy, $27 at the Bookworm of Edwards.

The Rules Do Not Apply: A Memoir

By Ariel Levy

Ariel Levy, a staff writer at The New Yorker magazine since 2008, delves into her own account of unexpected tragedy, personal loss, and self-critique during the time she spent travelling alone in Mongolia while pregnant and on assignment in 2013. On Levy's account of her experience, Nicole Magistro, owner of the Bookworm, says:

"The train wreck is nasty as ever. And not only could I not look away, I was mesmerized by the complexity of the drama through such simple terms. The author sets the journalistic stories that have made her career against her own tragic narrative. This is a story of how we change when the the world seems to conspire against us, and how we find hope after the jarring fall. Excellent!"

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The Fire by Night by Teresa Messineo, $26.99 at the Bookworm of Edwards.

Fire by Night

By Teresa Messineo

Teresa Messineo's debut novel is a gripping piece of historical fiction set to the backdrop of two World War II nurses dealing with similar hardships in distant fronts of the war. The Bookworm's Karin Barker says:

"Sacrifice and survival on both theaters of WWII told thru the perspective of two nurses. A bit gritty, well crafted, strong character development and great sense of time and place. Illuminates the lives of women who risked everything to save others during a horrifying time. Will please readers who love war time stories. Good if you liked The Nightingale." 

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Celine by Peter Heller, $25.95 at the Bookworm of Edwards.

Celine

By Peter Heller

Award-winning adventure writer Peter Heller's third novel mimics the page-turning lyrical beat of Outside Magazine and National Geographic Adventure, where Heller is a frequent contributor. The Colorado-based author's newest novel takes readers on a suspense-filled journey through the American west. The Bookworm of Edwards' Christopher Green says:

"Fans of The Dog Stars and The Painter will find the same beautiful language, rounded and unique characters, and passages dripping with the ambiance of the modern West. Celine is the story of an aging private eye (based on Heller's own mother) who just can't seem to retire. She's made reuniting families her life's work and when the beautiful and tragic Gabriela contacts her out of the blue, she can't resist taking the case. The story interlaces the mystery of the disappearance of Gabriela's father with scenes from Celine's childhood. Celine is a story of how inconvenient people can still simply disappear into the woods. It's a story of loss, acceptance, and family."

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Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman, $25.95 at the Bookworm of Edwards.

Norse Mythology

By Neil Gaiman

Norse Mythology sees Gaiman, a master of the literary genre of mythological fiction and fantasy, taking a new role as story-teller, this time explaining to readers the who/what/why/where/and when behind the mythical Norse tales of yore. Ryan Miller of the Bookworm says: 

"This easily accessible volume collects the stories of Odin, Thor, Loki, Freyja, and all the other gods and goddesses of the Norse pantheon.  From the creation of the world to the epic battle of Ragnarok, it’s all here.  Appropriate for all ages but not dumbed down, this is the perfect starting point for anyone curious about Aesir and Vanir and their epic deeds (and occasional misadventure)."

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Rabbit Cake by Annie Hartnett, $15.95 at the Bookworm of Edwards.

Rabbit Cake

By Annie Hartnett

Annie Hartnett reprises her award-winning literary style in her newest work of fiction, a coming-of-age tale told through the eyes of a 10-year-old. The book takes a humorous look at the many stages -- and expressions -- of grief after the loss of a family member. Says the Bookworm's Sarah Taylor:

"Elvis Babbit misses the rabbit cakes. Her mother made one any time there was a reason to celebrate - birthdays, holidays, and ordinary Tuesday. But her mother was a chronic sleepswimmer and has a terrible accident one night and drowns. This story is a beautiful exploration of grief and how it affects everyone differently. Told through 10-year-old Elvis' eyes, you will laugh and cry as you journey with her and her family."

The Bookworm of Edwards, 295 Main St. (Riverwalk), Edwards, 970-926-7323.

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