Honouring Astrid Lindgren on International Womens Day
Today is International Women's Day and we at Alex&Elle would like to honour a Swedish woman that we have always admired. Her name is Astrid Lindgren and she is probably the biggest Swedish children’s book author of all time. We grew up reading her books and have been reading them to our kids here in Australia. Through her books and other work she has been sending strong political messages, always with children in focus.

"Once there was a girl who lived on a farm with her big family. She would spend entire days roaming free in the fields with her brothers and sisters, but she also helped take care of the farm animals. Not just the small ones like chickens and ducks - even the big ones like cows and horses! Her name was Astrid Lindgren and she had quite a rebellious spirit.

She was strong, brave, never scared of being alone, and she could do all sorts of things: clean, cook, fix a bike, walk along rooftops, fight off bullies, make up fantastic stories…Sound familiar? Well, if you’ve ever read about another little girl who was strong, brave, and fearless called Pippi Longstocking, you won’t be surprised to learn that Astrid was the author of that brilliant book.

When Pippi Longstocking was published, lots of adults disapproved. “Pippi is too rebellious”, they said. “Our children will think being disobedient is okay.” Children, on the other hand, absolutely loved it. Pippi didn’t just say “no" with out any reason: she showed young readers the importance of being independent, while always caring for others.

Today Pippi Longstocking is one of the best-loved books in children’s literature. Astrid went on to write and publish many more books, always depicting strong children in charge of their own adventures. So, whenever you’re in trouble for something you did, grab a copy of Pippi Longstocking. She will always be there to help you! “

- Extract from "Good Night Stories For Rebel Girls" published 2016 by Penguin Books