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Children's books for Libraries Week

by Sophie Green

Libraries Week is taking place 4-10 October, and this year's theme is about taking action and changing lives!

To celebrate Libraries Week, here are our favourite books about real people who changed the world for the better.

Good night stories for rebel girls: 100 immigrant women who changed the world, by Elena Favilli and Pam Gruber

A children's book packed with 100 bedtime stories about the lives of 100 extraordinary women from the past and the present.

Amazing Muslims who changed the world, by Islam Burhana and Reya Ahmed

Think you know who first thought of the theory of evolution? Ever wondered who created the oldest library in the world? And have you heard the incredible tale of the masked knight - a rebel girl who became a military commander? In this illustrated and beautifully-written treasure trove of iconic amazing and hidden Muslim heroes, you'll find people you might know, like Malala Yousafzai, Mo Farah and Muhammad Ali, as well as some you might not.

Ground-breaking women, by Adam Murphy and Lisa Murphy

Adam Murphy interviews the dead famous women who changed the world - getting their stories straight from the corpses' mouths! This book is like having history injected into your brain! It guarantees laughs, surprises, and a whole host of the most astonishing achievements by some of the most amazing women you'll ever discover.

Stories for boys who dare to be different: further true tales of amazing boys who changed the world without killing dragons, by Ben Brooks and Quinton Winter

What have the footballer Kylian Mbappé, the philosopher Socrates and the singer Ed Sheeran all got in common? All three of them defied expectations - going against the grain and pursuing their dreams - despite a seemingly impossible barrage of obstacles and difficulties. Their stories are incredible, as are those of the tap-dancer Evan Ruggiero, the Pokémon creator Satoshi Tajiri, and the other inspirational boys who fill the pages of this extraordinary book. It's books like these that can make a huge difference to parents and their children's lives.

They did it first: 50 scientists, artists and mathematicians who changed the world, by Julie Leung, Caitlin Kuhwald and Alex Hart

'They Did It First' features 50 trailblazing scientists, artists and mathematicians who were not afraid to dream big and be the first. Discover the pioneers who defied the boundaries of possibility and went on to revolutionise the world. Written by Julie Leung and beautifully illustrated throughout by Caitlin Kuhwald, the extraordinary men and women profiled include well-known figures such as Alan Turing, Jane Goodall and Aretha Franklin, alongside lesser-known achievers, such as Thai Lee, the first Korean woman to graduate Harvard Business School, and Walter Alvarez, who was the first person to theorise that dinosaurs died from an asteroid blast. These visionaries came from all walks of life and faced different challenges, but all of them went on to achieve great things and make outstanding contributions to their fields, paving the way for others who came after them.

Little leaders: exceptional men in black history, by Vashti Harrison and Kwesi Johnson

This beautifully illustrated volume educates and inspires as it relates true stories of black men in history. Illuminating text paired with irresistible full-colour art bring to life both iconic and lesser-known figures. Among these biographies, readers will find aviators and artists, politicians and pop culture icons. The men featured include writer James Baldwin, artist Aaron Douglas, photographer Gordon Parks, diplomat Kofi Annan, comic book author Dwayne McDuffie, and musician Prince.

I am Malala: how one girl stood up for education and changed the world, by Malala Yousafzai and Patricia McCormick

Malala Yousafzai tells her story - from her childhood in the Swat Valley to her shooting, recovery and new life in England. She's a girl who loves cricket, gossips with her best friends, and, on the day of the shooting, nearly overslept and missed an exam. A girl who saw women suddenly banned from public, schools blown up, the Taliban seize control, and her homeland descend into a state of fear and repression. This is the story of her life and her passionate belief in every child's right to education, her determination to make that a reality throughout the world and her hope to inspire others.

Great people who reached for the stars, by Louise Page and Kat Williams

This title covers stories of success and uncompromising acts of self-definition from amazing people throughout history. From disability activist and writer, Louise Page, 'Great People Who Reached for the Stars' is an empowering read about people who have refused to take 'No!' for an answer.

Queer, there, and everywhere: 23 people who changed the world, by Sarah Prager and Zoë More O'Ferrall

World history has been made by countless lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer individuals - and you've never heard of many of them. Queer author and activist Sarah Prager delves deep into the lives of 23 people who fought, created, and loved on their own terms. From high-profile figures like Abraham Lincoln and Eleanor Roosevelt to the trailblazing gender-ambiguous Queen of Sweden and a bisexual blues singer who didn't make it into your history books, these astonishing true stories uncover a rich queer heritage that encompasses every culture, in every era.

Super scientists, by Anne Blanchard

Meet 40 of the most inspired scientists of all time who have changed our world.

Shaking things up: 14 young women who changed the world, by Susan Hood

Fresh, accessible, and inspiring, 'Shaking Things Up' introduces 14 revolutionary young women - each paired with a noteworthy female artist - to the next generation of activists, trail-blazers, and rabble-rousers. Among the powerful pairings: Caldecott Medalist Sophie Blackall takes on heroic World War II spies Eileen and Jacqueline Nearne; Selina Alko is matched with the brave Malala Yousafzai; New York Times bestselling illustrator Emily Winfield Martin is paired with the inventor of the controversial one-piece bathing suit, Annette Kellerman; and Shadra Strickland introduces America's first known female firefighter, Molly Williams.

Children who changed the world, by Marcia Williams

Celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Rights of the Child and the amazing children who have stood up for them all over the world. From the heroes familiar to everyone, such as Malala Yousafzai, to the amazing activists you might not have heard of, like Baruani Ndume, the teenager who gave a voice to fellow refugee children in Tanzania, discover the incredible true stories of child activists. This is an inspirational and moving book from author-illustrator Marcia Williams, providing the perfect introduction to an important subject and marking 30 years since the Convention on the Rights of the Child was signed by the United Nations General Assembly.