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Did you know that April 11 is National Eight-Track Tape Day? My parents had an eight-track player when I was a kid, and believe it or not, I thought it was pretty cool. I can still hear the “ka-chunk” of the cartridge going into the player and the loud “clicks” in between songs. My favorite memory of listening to eight-track tapes didn’t happen at home but on a lake. My great aunt and uncle lived in the same small town as my family in southern Nevada. One year my uncle won a local contest in which the grand prize was a three-day houseboat trip on Lake Mead. There were seven of us who went on the trip, and I have to say it was a hoot. The houseboat came equipped with an eight-track player and a small collection of tapes. If we had known this ahead of time, we probably would have brought some tapes of our own because our choice of music was polka…and polka. So, forevermore, eight-track tunes remind me of polka music.

This topic has put me into a groovy retro vibe, so of course, I just had to create a retro reading list. Not that I want to return to clunky eight-track cartridges, but there are other reasons to celebrate the past—maybe through clothing, hairstyles, cars or child-rearing. I was a child-to-preteen in the 1970s, so I find myself feeling a certain nostalgia for life before computers and smart phones (just not eight-track players or the abundance of gold, avocado and orange décor). Maybe your retro vibe embraces a different decade, and that’s all right. Paying tribute to the past, no matter the decade, can be out of sight. Can you dig it?

  • “Classic Car: The Definitive Visual History” edited by Chauney Dunford.
  • “Retro Baby: Cut Back on All the Gear and Boost Your Baby’s Development with More Than 100 Time-Tested Activities” by Anne H. Zachary.
  • “Retro Mama Scrap Happy Sewing: 18 Easy Sewing Projects for DIY Gifts and Toys from Fabric Remnants” by Kim Kruzich.
  • “Simply Retro with Camille Roskelley: Fresh Quilts from Classic Blocks” by Camille Roskelley.
  • “The Steampunk User’s Manual: An Illustrated Practical and Whimsical Guide to Creating Retro-Futurist Dreams” by Desirina Boskovich.
  • “Sweater Girls: 20 Patterns for Starlet Sweaters, Retro Wraps, & Glamour Knits” by Madeline Weston.
  • “Vintage Hairstyles: Simple Steps for Retro Hair with a Modern Twist” by Emma Sundh.

New at the Library


“The Bounty: A Fox and O’Hare Novel” by Janet Evanovich.

“The Cook of the Halcyon” by Andrea Camilleri.

“Ralph Compton: Shot to Hell” by Jackson Lowry.


“The Handy Physics Answer Book” by Charles Liu.

“Mini Amigurumi Animals: 26 Tiny Creatures to Crochet” by Sarah Abbondio.

“The Princess Spy: The True Story of World War II Spy, Aline Griffith Countess of Romanones” by Larry Loftis.


“The Boy Whose Head was Filled with Stars: A Life of Edwin Hubble” written by Isabelle Marinov, illustrated by Deborah Marcero.

“Early One Morning” written by Mem Fox, illustrated by Christine Davenier.

“Houdini and Me” by Dan Gutman.

This is just a small sampling of the many new titles added each week to the Fort Vancouver Regional Library District collection. Visit the district’s 15 locations, our website at, or call (360) 906-5000 to reserve titles or find additional listings.