Seaside Stories

Beach Reads for a Vicarious Escape

April 7, 2020 | by Shellie Bailey-Shah

Chances are, you have more time to read right now than you have had in the past decade. And we all know, a good book can transport you to another time and place — far from the realities of the COVID-19 outbreak. Karen Emmerling, owner of local institution Beach Books, has some recommendations for a vicarious escape.

The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Los Angeles Times best-selling author Alix E. Harrow is about a young woman named January Scaller who embarks on a fantastical journey of self-discovery through a magical book that carries “the scents of other worlds.”

House Lessons: Renovating a Life by New York Times best-selling author Erica Bauermeister is a memoir about the power of home and the transformative act of restoring one house in particular in Port Townsend, Washington. Discover what lessons this home has to teach and ultimately how to make your own home and life better.

The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel begins at a five-star hotel on Vancouver Island but then takes readers on a ride that involves a Manhattan Ponzi scheme and the mysterious disappearance of a woman from a ship at sea. The New York Times put this novel on its “20 Books We’re Watching For in 2020” list.

Greenwood: A Novel by Canadian author Michael Christie is a time-hopping tale of one family through generations of love, loss and dark secrets. The common thread: trees and the hopeful yet sometimes impossible task of growing toward the light.

In addition to those page-turners, Emmerling shares her favorite picks for Oregon Coast-themed books. These selections are perfect for the curious traveler looking to get a better sense of  coastal Oregon as well as its riveting history.

Emmerling’s first three recommendations are all written by the same author, Bonnie Henderson. Henderson, a former editor for Sunset magazine, lives in Eugene but spends much of her time along the Oregon Coast. In her book Strand: An Odyssey of Pacific Ocean Debris, she traces the stories of trash washed up along the Oregon Coast to places as far away as Shenzhen, China, and Hokkaido, Japan. In The Next Tsunami: Living on a Restless Coast, Henderson looks at the science behind past tsunamis and the inevitable tsunami that will one day slam the Oregon Coast, along with the people who study them. Emmerling also recommends Henderson’s comprehensive guide Day Hiking Oregon Coast: Beaches, Headlands, Oregon Trail. The book details 132 hikes along the Oregon Coast, including several in Seaside.

Another good guide for would-be hikers? Emmerling recommends Exploring the Oregon Coast Trail: 40 Consecutive Day Hikes From the Columbia River to the California Border by Connie Soper, which includes a comprehensive trail map with details on day sections along with the history of Oregon’s open-beach laws.

If you’re a history buff, Emmerling points to Tillamook Rock Lighthouse: History & Tales of Terrible Tilly by Brian D. Ratty. It’s the story of those who built the lighthouse near Seaside, those who manned it and those who paid the ultimate price to keep the beacon burning bright. 

All the books mentioned are available online at Beach Books’ website.

Photo courtesy of Beach Books.

and so much more!

Seaside Without A Car

If you’ve visited Seaside in the past, you’ve likely come by car. But did you know that you can leave the driving to someone e...

Learn More
View from the Tower

View from the old Seaside Hotel tower.

Learn More
Riding the Streetcar in Seaside

Riding the streetcar in Seaside is a fun and affordable way to see the town.

Learn More
A Beach Bicycle Built for Two

Beach Bike Rentals in Seaside, Oregon

Learn More
Wave Energy

Wave energy refers to energy generated from the power of waves near their surface. There are different types of devices designed to convert wave energy, but the ones that seems to be most in use at the moment as researchers continue to investigate this source of renewable energy are buoys. Columbia Power Technologies, an Oregon-based alternative energy company, recently launched a prototype wave energy buoy in the gentle waters of the Puget Sound as it races to be one of the first suppliers of wave-generated energy.

Learn More
Promenade Meandering

Strolling on the promenade in Seaside is a time-honored tradition on the Oregon Coast

Learn More
A Stop on the Art Walk

Capturing what goes on behind the scenes of a First Saturday Art Walk

Learn More
Buffleheads: Oregon Coast’s Silliest Part-Time Residents

Buffleheads in Seaside, Oregon rivers in winter.

Learn More
Excellence in Customer Service Tip #1: 3 Key Elements in a Good Greeting

National Tourism and Travel Week begins May 2, 2015. In celebration, the City of Seaside Visitors Bureau is emphasizing the import...

Learn More
How to Treasure Seaside

Learn why one family uncovers more reasons to love Seaside each time they visit. After 40 years of coming to Seaside, there are st...

Learn More
MotorTrend Magazine – Epic Drives: Classic Cobra Visits Seaside

MotorTrend Magazine makes the trek to Seaside, Oregon to show off a Classic Cobra

Learn More
Forest management along Oregon’s Coast Range

forestry history and information on timber management in North Oregon Coast Range

Learn More
Seaside Civic and Convention Center

The benefits and joys of life in our small coastal community are many. And just when you think you’ve seen it all, done it all and start thinking about heading to the big city you’re reminded that the Seaside Civic and Convention Center brings you the best of all possible worlds and you can stay right here

Learn More
MotorHome Magazine: Sea to River, Oregon’s Spectacular North Coast

Bobbie Hasselbring from MotorHome magazine attended a media Fam (Familiarization) Tour hosted by the City of Seaside Visitors Bure...

Learn More
The Seaside Parade of Lights is one of many holiday festivities
Holiday Festivities in Seaside

Seaside is one of the Coast’s most beloved destinations for holiday shopping and seasonal celebrations. Plan a visit around thes...

Learn More
Clamming in Seaside: Then & Now

A brief look at clamming in Seaside and Tillamook Head and a comparison of how they

Learn More
View from the North Prom

Beautiful view from Seaside's north promenade.

Learn More