Lawrence Ferlinghetti (1919 – 2021): Over a Century of Radical Poetry and Painting

‘The state of the world calls out for poetry to save it’, declared Lawrence Ferlinghetti in 2007, writing in the poem ‘Poetry as Insurgent Art [I am signalling you through the flames]’:

‘If you would be a poet, create works capable of answering the/ challenge of apocalyptic times, even if this means sounding/ apocalyptic.’

Ferlinghetti – who died two days ago aged 101 – certainly created many works of poetry, painting, fiction and more, which answered this radical call to art, sounding both apocalyptic and hopeful, and embodying the anti-establishment spirit that he would maintain through his life.

Born in Yonkers, New York, in 1919, Ferlinghetti would become famous for helping to launch the so-called Beat Generation during the 1950s and for founding the City Lights bookshop in San Francisco. Raised by his aunt, Ferlinghetti had been a journalist, served in the US Navy during World War II, and met his future wife Selden Kirby-Smith, before publishing his debut poetry collection Pictures of the Gone World in 1955 and his most popular collection A Coney Island of the Mind in 1958.

the birds which flew about
     calling to each other
                                 in the stilly air
       as if they were questioning existence
                                         or trying to recall something forgotten

So popular has this second volume proven to be, in fact, that Robert Woodward commented in 2008: “With roughly a million copies in print, few poetry collections come anywhere close to matching its readership.” Compared to Walt Whitman, Ezra Pound and William Blake, Ferlinghetti established his most familiar style in A Coney Island of the Mind which mixes the spiritual and the sensual, with a painter’s eye for the surreal and visionary. In ‘A Coney island of the Mind, 13’, Ferlinghetti begins to

          paint a different kind                                         of Paradiso in which the people would be naked                                         as they always are …

but there would be no anxious angels telling them                                         how heaven is                                                   the perfect picture of                                                               a monarchy                                         and there would be no fires burning                                                 in the hellish holes below                                         in which I might have stepped                                         nor any alters in the sky except                                                               fountains of imagination

Here, in this reimagining of heaven, Ferlinghetti express the philosophical anarchism he would maintain through his life by shunning the hierarchy of divine beings, of reward and punishment, in favour of the “fountains of imagination” which informed his own work, and those of his contemporary artistic world.

One important figure of this world was poet Allen Ginsberg. Ferlinghetti published Ginsberg’s glorious epic poem Howl in 1956, and was promptly arrested along with Ginsberg, and the manager of City lights, Shigeyoshi Murao. Deemed obscene by the San Francisco police, the long and fraught trial that followed focused on the poem’s depictions of homosexuality (which was not decriminalised in California until 1976) and illicit drug use, of course (rather than the ecstatic beauty and linguistic innovation of its famously long lines). Eventually deemed “not obscene”, Howl would form a landmark case when California State Superior Court Judge Clayton Horn decided that the poem was of “redeeming social importance”.

angelheaded hipsters burning for the ancient heavenly connection to the starry dynamo in the machinery of night

Often regarded as a straight-forward Beat artist himself, Ferlinghetti was keen to distance his work from that of his contemporaries and friends such as Jack Kerouac and William Burroughs, shucking off any adherence to artistic movements, and favouring a focus on the socially and politically conscious nature of his work.

While known predominantly as a poet, Ferlinghetti had his paintings displayed across the US for over sixty years, which continued his anti-establishment explorations of corporate greed, social justice, immigration, and revolution.

Living in San Francisco until his death, Ferlinghetti remained a popular figure in City Lights and the local area, and many locals are known to happily recall stories of their time spent with him. He is survived by two children, and his legacy remains in the prolific range of poetry and paintings that he left behind, as well as the generations of artists who take influence from them.

*

Joe Norman, Library Assistant at Manor Farm Library, is a professional nerd and hairless headbanger.

How to Make a Heart Shaped Mouse

Follow Debbie’s simple instructions to create your own heart shaped mouse

You will need: 

Card, any colour, ½ A4 sheet per mouse 

Googly eyes if you have them 

Small black bead for the nose 

Pipe cleaner for the tail (wool or string if you haven’t got any pipe cleaners) 

Scissors  

Glue 

Fold the largest heart in half and then fold as shown.

Stick the smallest hearts on the inside to make the ears.  Stick the googly eyes on and draw lines for the whiskers.  If there are preschool children in your house, you may prefer to use small white circles with a black dot painted on for the eyes.   

Tip: use a paper hole cutter to make the circles. 

Stick the mouse onto the remaining heart as shown.  Stick a pipe cleaner in as shown for the tail.  Use string or wool if you don’t have any pipe cleaners.

Stick a small black bead onto the tip to make a nose.  As before, if there are preschool children in your house, you may prefer to use a small circle of paper for the nose, or you could draw a nose on the tip with a black pen.  Curl the tail around and your mouse is finished. 

Five Queer Works by Five Queer Authors – as recommended by Robert Jones Jr, author of ‘The Prophets’

Bestselling author Robert Jones Jr shares his reading recommendations for LGBT+ History Month 2021.

Robert Jones Jr is one of the biggest new authors to emerge in 2021. Hillingdon Libraries were lucky enough to interview Robert about his bestselling debut novel, The Prophets, last month. Now, Robert has been kind enough to share his personal recommendations for five queer works by five queer authors, as part of our celebration of LGBT+ History Month.

James Baldwin, Go Tell it on the Mountain:  This book struck me deeply because it’s wrestling with how Christianity attempts to tell the Black queer person that they are sinful, that their desires are unnatural, and that they must suppress them—and not just suppress them but change them into something else in order to be seen as worthy by God. 

James Earl Hardy, B-Boy Blues: This influential book is the first hip-hop love story between two Black men that’s ever been written and it immediately drew me in with its frank salaciousness, refreshing comedy, and keen focus on the centrality of the main characters’ fraught, but ultimately enduring love for one another.  

Marlon James, Black Leopard, Red Wolf: A rich, sublime, complex, epic exploration of ancient African mythology through the lens of characters who are queer and polyamorous revealing the borderless domains of African concepts of gender, gender identity, sex, and sexuality that existed prior to Christian/European/Western dogma and interference.   

Wallace Thurman, The Blacker the Berry: Written in 1929 (the earliest book I could find dealing with the intersection of Blackness and queerness) it explores, painfully, how the Black queer people had to live in those times: in the shadows, in a closed room, in the closet, suppressing their desires, or even getting into relationships with people who they know they should not be in relationship with because those are not where their desires are, but that’s where the society is pushing them to go.  

Alice Walker, The Color Purple: A brutally honest, exquisitely wrought, and profoundly moving testament to the power of love—specifically, the love between women, whether romantic or platonic, as not just rebellion against, but as a way to escape the confines of patriarchy and ultimately dismantle it.  

We’ve linked to digital or physical editions of Robert’s choices in the text, or you can search for them on our library catalogue or BorrowBox reading app.

Thank you so much to Robert Jones Jr for sharing his personal reading recommendations with us. If you’d like to know more about Robert’s wonderful debut novel, The Prophets, you can hear him talking to us about it in our exclusive interview, below.

Heart Cakes

Tahira from West Drayton shares her recipe for heart cakes.

Ingredients for the cake

  • 4oz butter
  • 4oz Self-raising flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 oz sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of vanilla essence


Ingredients for the buttercream/decoration: 

  • 250g unsalted butter
  • 1kg icing sugar
  • 2 tablespoon vanilla essence
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • white fondant icing

You will also need cupcake cases and a cupcake baking tray greased with butter.  Preheat the oven at 140 degrees.

  1. Mix the butter, sugar, and vanilla essence until creamy. Then add the eggs and self-raising flour.
  2. Mix very well until all mixture is smooth.
  3. Then place cupcake cases into the cupcake baking tray and place in the oven for around 15/20 minutes until golden brown.
  4. Separately, for the buttercream, mix the unsalted butter, icing sugar,  vanilla essence, and the milk until nice and creamy.
  5. Once the cakes are cooked and cooled down, you can decorate your cupcakes with the buttercream. You can use a piping bag and nozzle if you have one. Otherwise, you can put the buttercream on the cupcakes with a spoon and layer it on. Then you can make heart shapes using the fondant and stick-on top of the buttercream.  

You can also use cake colouring to make them colourful and add more cake decorations 🍰
Hope you enjoy your homemade cupcakes 🙂

It’s A Sin: Memories of the 1980s AIDS crisis

As part of our LGBT+ History Month programme, Sarah from Hillingdon Libraries writes about her memories of the 1980s AIDS crisis, which was recently revisited on-screen in the Channel 4 drama It’s A Sin.

Watching Russell T Davies’ brilliant Channel 4 drama series It’s A Sin, has been emotional and thought provoking. With moments of heartbreak, humour and joy, it has also brought back memories of life in the 1980s. A reminder of the music, such as the Eurythmics’ ‘Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)’ and Kate Bush’s ‘Running Up That Hill’. A time when buses still had conductors; phone calls were made through rotary-dial telephones or from a phone box in the street; when property, in pre-regeneration London, was still affordable for most. Yet the most chilling reminder was that of the AIDS epidemic, and the generation that was lost to it.

It’s A Sin tells the story of a group of young friends living in London through the HIV/Aids crisis in the 1980s and the devastating impact it had, predominantly, among gay men.

The series begins in 1981, the same year I started out on a design course at the London College of Fashion. The students were diverse, including many, from what we now refer to as the LGBT+ community, of openly gay young men; more liberated than previous generations, living and enjoying life to the full.

But within a year there was talk of an emerging new disease which initially had no name and was responsible for the deaths of young, previously healthy, gay men. Everyone can remember the day of a significant moment and for me that was the first time I heard about AIDS: A group of us were sitting around a table and a young gay man remarked that he had read something about it, and that he was scared.

Initially information about this disease was scarce, with much of the early reporting being speculative. The media fed off misinformation; leading to years of ignorance and prejudice, adding to the suffering of those affected by the disease, even by association. The resulting stigma is frequently cited as the reason efforts were so slow in the development of treatment and prevention measures.

By the time I left college AIDS had its name as did its pathogen HIV. AIDS would become the biggest global tragedy of the late 20th and early 21st century. In 2019 there were approximately 38 million people across the globe living with HIV.

Now there are medicines not only for prevention of HIV but also for treatment, including the reduction of infection levels to ‘undetectable’, with zero risk of transmission.

Hillingdon libraries have a range of titles exploring HIV/AIDS and the life in the 1980s on the online catalogue, including:

How to Survive a Plague by David France

Bang!: A history of Britain in the 1980s by Graham Stewart

Rejoice! Rejoice! : Britain in the 1980s by Alwyn W. Turner

Information and resources are available through our digital offer, including:

Britannica Online – the digital version of the world-famous encyclopedia.

Credo Reference – which allows you to view a wide range of reference titles.

Universal Class – Search for the: ‘HIV – Prevention, Diagnosis, Treatment’ course.

For support and advice:

HART – Empowering HIV-Positive People

National AIDS Trust

Terrence Higgins Trust

Do It London – which promotes safer sex advice and HIV prevention.

By Sarah from Hillingdon Libraries.

In memory of Andru.

Finding Maurice at Oak Farm Library

As part of our celebration of LGBT+ History Month, Darren from Hillingdon Libraries writes about finding an iconic gay book that was kept secret by its author for decades…

Being a young gay man in the 1990s was a mixed experience. You’d have grown up in the shadow of AIDS, with a law in place to prevent ‘the promotion’ of gay relationships. As a kid, representation was sparse, and the homosexual characters you did find on TV were usually comic foils or tragic figures. That was certainly my experience, but Channel 4 started to change the conversation and I spent many evenings watching with my finger over the mute button, in case I heard my parents stirring – I didn’t want them to find me watching anything that might clue them in to what I was still figuring out. 

I would have been 19 or 20 when I found Merchant Ivory’s 1987 adaptation of Maurice showing. I missed the first half, and therefore had no idea that the title character (James Wilby) had already fallen in love with and been spurned by Clive, (played by a young Hugh Grant). I did, however, catch the moments that Maurice met Alec Scudder (Rupert Graves), Clive’s under-gamekeeper, and was enraptured. Everything about it was impossibly romantic – the period detail, the costumes, and the love story itself. When Maurice abandons comfortable middle-class respectability to disappear with his working-class lover, I could only imagine I’d have made exactly the same choice.  

I knew nothing about Maurice, and in the days before the internet I consulted my Time Out Film Guide to discover it was based on a novel by E.M. Forster. I was working as a casual library assistant at the time, and over the next few weeks would check the shelves at whichever library I was working at for Forster’s novel. Finally, at Oak Farm library, there it was. My stomach flipped, and I very surreptitiously issued the book to myself, careful that no one I was working with noticed in case they knew the book was about gay men and put two and two together.  

On my lunch break, I went to Hillingdon Court Park and sat under a tree, the Divine Comedy playing on my Walkman and the early spring sun doing its best to provide some warmth. I began to read, and over the next few weeks, in secret, finished the book. It was the first novel I’d read featuring sympathetic gay protagonists, the first thing I’d read that gave gay characters a happy ending, and the first not to mock or disdain them.  

So how did Forster come to write a book that viewed gay men so positively, and how did he get it published? 

The answer to that second question is, the book was not published in his lifetime. Written in 1917, Forster placed Maurice in a drawer with the note ‘Publishable. But worth it?’. Friends read it, but it didn’t reach a wider audience until 1971, the year after Forster died. It was not reviewed especially favourably, and the content might be part of the reason – homosexuality was only decriminalised four years previously, and attitudes were softening but still not fully accepting. (That said, it could well be that Maurice isn’t as strong a novel as Howards End or A Passage to India and that my attachment to it clouds my judgement.) 

Forster was determined to give the book a happy, or at least positive ending, with Maurice and Scudder choosing to exile themselves from society. They disappear into the greenwood, with no clue given as to how they might live their lives. It’s an impossible fairytale close to the novel, which at the time was the only way you could really give gay characters a happy ending. The landmark British gay film Beautiful Thing pulls a similar trick: the young lovers Ste and Jamie dance outdoors surrounded by onlookers from the Thamesmead estate they live on. The consequences of being open aren’t revealed, but we get to feel glad for them. (The original ending to Maurice reveals the lovers become woodcutters, and on being found by Maurice’s sister realise they have to move on to avoid detection.) 

Forster dedicated Maurice to ‘a happier year’, no doubt one in which same sex partners can live openly, and someone can borrow a book from a library with an LGBT+ theme, without being nervous at being seen with it. Some years after I first read the book (and by which time I’d read every other Forster novel, and plenty of other LGBT novels), I was involved in improving and expanding Hillingdon library service’s LGBT book collection. With a working party of colleagues, we discussed whether they should be shelved separately or interfiled with the other titles. I felt that they should be interfiled, because there is still a stigma and browsing a ‘gay section’ could stop someone browsing and finding a book that might make them feel better about themselves. We also agreed not to put an identifying sticker on the spine. So, all our LGBT book stock can be found in their corresponding sections, ordered alphabetically if it’s a fiction title or the Dewey decimal system for non-fiction. (This also handily avoids having to decide what makes a book LGBT, which is as much a minefield as deciding what qualifies a book as a classic!) 

 Our LGBT+ stock can be searched for on our online catalogue by typing ‘LGBT’ as the subject. And we’ve come a long way since I smuggled Maurice out of Oak Farm library so my colleagues wouldn’t notice. It doesn’t matter who you are and who serves you – I hope you find a book on our shelves that means as much to you as Maurice does to me.  

By Darren from Hillingdon Libraries.

LGBT+ History Month – Why should we celebrate?

LGBT+ History Month is an annual celebration that provides education and insight into the issues that the LGBT+ community faces – but why should everyone get involved in celebrating this initiative? Surely, nowadays your sexual orientation, identity or changing your pronouns doesn’t matter right?

Unfortunately, this is not the case. Although there have been leaps forward in recent years – for example the legalisation of gay marriage – we don’t seem to be there yet. 

A YouGov poll of more than 1,000 teachers working in UK primary or secondary schools found that LGBT+ bullying is the most prevalent type of bullying in schools, with the research showing it was more common than incidents relating to racism, sexism or religion. 

There are also these facts for example, coming from a Government nationwide LGBT+ survey and other sources which make it clear education and celebration is desperately needed.

Members of the LGBT+ community: 

  • Are more likely to experience a range of mental health problems such as depression, suicidal thoughts, self-harm and alcohol and substance misuse. 
  • Are at a greater risk of experiencing hate crime compared to heterosexual people, with certain LGBT+ groups found to be at particular risk, including gay men, young people and those identifying as LGBT+ from BAME groups. 
  • Are less satisfied with their life than the general UK population. 

And that’s just in the UK. There are still 72 different places in the world that criminalise “private, consensual, same-sex sexual activity”, according to Human Dignity Trust. 

Remembering the history of the LGBT+ community is to acknowledge and revere the amount of progress that has been made. Being homosexual, for example, was a crime in the UK until 1967. 

So, What Does LGBT+ History Month Involve?

The primary aim of LGBT History Month is to teach young people about the history of the gay rights movement and to promote an inclusive modern society. 

Following much campaigning, in April 2019 the government announced new regulations for teaching relationships and sex education in England. 

The regulations – which were rolled out in September 2020 – mean that secondary schools now teach pupils about sexual orientation and gender identity, and all primary schools teach about different families, which of course includes LGBT families. 

LGBT History Month is marked every February by schools, colleges and various organisations across the country, who seek to increase young people’s awareness of the LGBT+ community through education. 

The theme for LGBT History Month 2019 was ‘Peace, Activism and Reconciliation’, while this year it is ‘Body, Mind, Spirit.’ 

The event, organised by Schools OUT UK, an LGBT+ Education Charity, has the motto: “Claiming our past. Celebrating our present. Creating our future.” 

Despite the ongoing issues with coronavirus, there are a plethora of virtual events to acknowledge the month and honour the history of the LGBT+ community, including educational talks, virtual art exhibitions, film screenings and readings! 

To find out more, visit the LGBT History Month website or Outing The Past 

Bonus Homeschool Material!

The Proud Trust provide some amazing education resources packs if you’re home-schooling and want to include LGBT+ History Month in your lessons here.  

We only got to where we are today thanks to the fights of previous generations – their stories are an inspiration for the movements of today. 

If you’d like to find out more please check out the following articles:

  1. LGBT Heroes You Should Know About
  2. Historical LGBTQ Activists and Artists Who Have Changed the World
  3. Seven People Who Changed LGBT+ History
  4. Historic LGBT Heroes Who Deserve Their Own Statues

Thank you so much for reading.

– By your friendly neighborhood library geek (that doesn’t really help, much does it?) AKA Lara.

How To Crochet A Love Heart For Heart Month

Deborah from Hillingdon Libraries shares her step-by-step instructions for creating a cute, crocheted love heart.

Heart month is a time to remember the importance of looking after both out physical and mental health. The British Heart Foundation states you are more at risk of developing heart and circulatory diseases if you have a mental health condition.

Crafting helps to improve mood and lower stress. The effort, multisensory engagement, repetitive actions and anticipation of satisfaction involved in making something are related to the release of neurotransmitters that promote joy and wellbeing, while also reducing stress hormones (craftscouncil.org.uk).

Take some time out for yourself and have a go at crocheting yourself a heart by following this step by step video.

If you enjoy crochet, why not take a look at the crochet books available on our online library catalogue, or the crochet magazines on our Press Reader app?

Hillingdon House of Horror?

A familiar looking library

Fortunately there is usually very little horror to be found in Hillingdon libraries (unless you’re perusing the right shelves, of course, or the Dewey Decimal system is causing you upset).  

But this was different in 1980, when the legendary Hammer Horror studios is said to have used one of the borough’s libraries for a scene in their TV show Hammer House of Horror.  

Hammer House of Horror was very popular during the 1980s; so much so, in fact, that it was spoofed in the famous satirical show Spitting Image in 1985. It proved highly influential to later generations of writers, with Mark Gatiss – prolific contemporary director, writer and actor – gushing over its merits, and the Guardian finding its influence in Charlie Brooker’s Black Mirror

An anthology show with thirteen episodes, Hammer House of Horror covered a range of themes, both familiar and innovative, including “voodoo” curses, escaped Nazis hiding in pet shops, lycanthropic family values, blood-drenched children’s birthday parties, a sleazy estate agent locked in an endless cycle of nested dreams, and an alcoholic musician haunted by a persecuted, time-travelling witch.  

For some reason, almost every character seems to be having an affair, and the catchy, up-beat theme song seems more appropriate for an ice-cream commercial than a show featuring Peter Cushing, with episodes entitled things like ‘The House That Bled to Death’ and ‘The Silent Scream’. Still, it remains a great watch with some genuinely unsettling and surprising moments.  

The episode in question, subtly entitled ‘The Mark of Satan’, is an effective one although is perhaps not the best point at which to start watching the show in 2021. There’s a killer virus, you see, with scenes set in a morgue (filmed in Hillingdon Hospital). And let’s just say that the protagonist comes up with a distinctly “don’t-try-this-at-home”  (or, for that matter, at work, in the car, in the bath, ever, anywhere, at all, for any reason) method of combatting the virus, which doesn’t involve a face mask or a vaccine. He subsequently becomes obsessed with the number 9 (as one does) and carries out his numerological research in the library (whoop whoop). 

Needless-to-say, it all ends in tears, and he would have been much better off if he’d stayed in the library and helped us to complete one of those really tricky puzzles.  

You’re all wondering about the location of said library, of course, which I have been tantalizingly withholding from you. According to a prominent fan-run website dedicated to the show, the library in question was…drum roll, please!…none other than Oak Farm Library, on Sutton Court Road, Hayes.   

Well, probably. It could have been the similar-looking Charville Library 😊.  (Or maybe even a branch in Maidenhead, outside this borough 🙁.) 

But, either way, the building’s décor unmistakably matches the interior of a public library from that era, complete with beige ceiling-high shelves, greenhouse-style roof windows, and a joyously-moustached reader.  

And the show in general will give those who know the local area and a little further afield plenty to recognise. Most of the series was filmed in and around the Chiltern Villages, working from Hammer’s HQ at the time in Great Hampden. Alongside confirmed scenes set in Hillingdon Hospital, there are others in Holy Cross Church in Greenford, and outside houses in Acton.  

Horror films, and Hammer’s work in particular, have long had a relationship with this general area. Of course, this is largely due to the close proximity of world-famous Pinewood studios, with Black Park in Iver used regularly to stand in for misty, vampire-strewn Carpathian forests, or gothic mansions like Oakley Court, Windsor, for Dracula’s castle. 

So, there we have it. Whether you’ve learned a random tit-bit of local library lore, discovered a new/old show to binge-watch, or simply reminisced about how great moustaches were in the ‘80s, I hope you’ve enjoyed the previous 600-ish words and are all managing to keep your horror in your fiction where it belongs.  

Joe Norman, professional nerd and hairless headbanger, is Library Assistant at Manor Farm Library, Ruislip.  

Women and Girls in Science: 5 Books

Today is International Day of Women and Girls in Science. Here are 5 fantastic books about women in science designed to inspire girl scientists.

Fantastically Great Women Scientists and their Stories by Kate Pankhurst

Women have been responsible for many of the world’s most groundbreaking scientific discoveries. Kate Pankhurst, descendent of Emmeline Pankhurst, tells the stories of some incredible female scientists whose hard work and persistence changed our understanding of science, and transformed people’s ideas of what women can do. Including comic strips, family trees, maps and more, ‘Fantastically Great Women Scientists and Their Stories’ is a celebration of women who made some of the world’s most important scientific breakthroughs.

Image result for Marie Curie and her daughters

Marie Curie and Her Daughters by Imogen Greenberg

Imagine someone told you that your dream could never come true. What would you do? Meet Marie Curie. Shy and reserved, she loved science more than anything else in the world. But she lived at a time when women couldn’t be scientists. Marie followed her passion and is now remembered for her game-changing discoveries. But while she tinkered away with test tubes and experimented with a glow-in-the-dark chemical elements, Marie became a mother. Irene and Eve grew up to be fiercely independent and determined women just like their mother, and had many adventures of their own. Join these three incredible women in this illustrated book as they save lives during WWI and WWII, win Nobel Prizes, overcome tragedies, travel all around the world and change the history of science forever.

Brilliant Women: Pioneers of Science and Technology: (Brilliant Women)

Brilliant Women: Pioneers of Science and Technology by Georgia Amson-Bradshaw

Say hello to Hypatia, an ancient Greek mathematician and astronomer. Learn about Lise Meitner, the heroic Jewish physicist who escaped the Nazis. Join Jane Goodall who lived in the jungle studying apes. These women are just a few of the many who followed their passion for science and technology, and weren’t put off by people telling them they couldn’t or shouldn’t. And along the way they discovered radiation, wrote the first computer program, expanded our knowledge of the universe and flew into space. Curious, provocative, engaging, brave, and funny – women who change the world are diverse, intriguing, and brilliant.

Bright Sparks: Amazing Discoveries, Inventions and Designs by Women by Owen O’Doherty

An introduction to fifty extraordinary discoveries, inventions and designs by inspirational women.From windscreen wipers to the life raft; coffee filters to emergency flares; Apollo Mission software to Monopoly: women have discovered, invented and designed some of the most important things we all take for granted, but many of their names are unknown.Meet incredible inventors from around the world, and learn how inventions happen. This beautifully illustrated book is a guide to remarkable, practical, skillful and amazing inventions by women who have made their mark on history.

Image result for Women of NASA DK readers : learning to read : 1 : LEGO : women of NASA

LEGO Women of NASA Space Heroes (DK Readers Level 1)

Learn about two of the first female astronauts to fly to space. Discover how a computer scientist sent a spacecraft to the moon. Be inspired to become a future space hero!