January 5 2017

The Library to Host Best-Selling Author of Book on the Women Behind NASA Space Program


The Friends of the Burlington Public Library are set to host a program with a best-selling author who told the little-known story of the women behind NASA’s space program.


Nathalia Holt will discuss her book “Rise of the Rocket Girls” during the Friends’ annual meeting starting at 7 p.m. on Monday, January 23. The talk will follow the group’s meeting which will discuss the accomplishment made over the past year and plans for 2017.


The book is based on the “true story of a group of elite young women at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory who shared a love of math and and whose work influenced military rocket design, brought us the first American satellite, shaped lunar missions, and ushered in a new era of space exploration that continues today at NASA where some of the women still work—now as senior engineers directing our missions to Mars and Venus,” the synopsis reads.


The Friends of the Library are excited about her visit.


“Ms. Holt sheds light on the women who helped transform NASA, taking readers through the revolutionary changes of careers that spanned half a century,” they said in the event announcement. “Be sure to stay and enjoy this great opportunity.”


The 2013 book was also well received by entertainment and science publications both for its look at the contributions of women whose work had been mostly overlooked by history and for the way the science and math were explained in an approachable and interesting way.


“The book acts as a fascinating time capsule, capturing what it was like to be a working woman at a time when only 20 percent of women worked outside the home, or when a woman could be fired simply for being pregnant,” the Smithsonian Magazine said in a review.


“Holt's book shines portraying the mathematical and engineering process behind JPL's many iconic spaceflight missions — including America's first satellite, Explorer 1, and the Voyager probes that explored the solar system — as well as the women's personal lives and the evolution of their unusual roles inside the male-dominated workplace,” Space.com said of the book.



The Friends of the Burlington Public Library’s annual meeting will also feature a chance for non-members to join and all members will be entered into a raffle.

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