How It Works… Retro Ladybird Book Designs

 
How it Works... Collection by Ladybird books
How it Works… Collection by Ladybird books

When I was a kid, I used to get a Ladybird book every week (if I was good) instead of sweets.  There must be dozens of them at my parents house, unless they’ve got rid of them all!  These books, released by Ladybird in the late 70s, early 80s, are some of those in a series of ‘How it Works…’. 

Mine were a present from A two Christmasses ago. I think they look brilliant, but so far they’ve just sat on our bookshelf, which seems a shame. I would like to display them somehow, but am lacking space and ideas!

How It Works... The Rocket (1967)
How It Works... The Rocket (1967)

How It Works... The Motor Car (1982)
How It Works... The Motor Car (1982)

 Obviously in the Sixties the new and exciting mode of transport was… the hovercraft! It’s not been quite the success that was anticipated, as we don’t now travel around by personal hovercraft, but at the time it must have been worthy of inclusion in this series. I think I’d quite like to travel around on my personal pink, purple and orange hovercraft!

How It Works... The Hovercraft (1969)
How It Works... The Hovercraft (1969)

The final book in my collection is also my favourite: the Computer.  Rumour has it that a limited edition of these were produced for the Ministry of Defence, presumably to inform employees about the exciting technology of computers. I’m not sure how true this is, but it’s a nice little anecdote.

How It Works... The Computer (1979)
How It Works... The Computer (1979)
Inside the front cover of 'The Computer'
Inside the front cover of 'The Computer'
This is the front inside cover of ‘The Computer’ and you can see the state of computers at the time.  As A pointed out, they look like toploading washing machines!  The one in the bottom right corner is a ‘micro computer’; the others are part of a ‘large main frame computer installation’. Brilliant!
 
When A bought these books for me, they came from months of tracking them down via Ebay. A couple of them came bundled in with some other random Ladybird books… So the next few pictures show two of the odds and ends. They kind of fit in with these books in their space-age stories, but the design is quite different!  Fun to look at all the same.
left: The Adventures of Major Tom; Right: The Giants of Universal Park (both 1982)
left: The Adventures of Major Tom; Right: The Giants of Universal Park (both 1982)
Orange aliens attack in Major Tom's adventure!
Orange aliens attack in Major Tom’s adventure!

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