What Are The Best Pregnancy Books? – Let’s Review!
When a lot of expecting parents find out that a little bundle of joy is on the way, they can be inundated with recommendations from family and friends about which books they should read while getting ready for the big day. With so many books out there, enough to fill a library, how can you tell which ones are worth reading and which ones you should skip all together?
To help, we took our library card and picked the 10 Best Pregnancy Books out there for you to read so you can be ready for when your little one is ready to come into the world.
We hope that with our recommendations, we can make the process of getting ready for the big day a bit easier and less stressful.
Ready? Let’s get started.
QUICK ANSWER: THE BEST PREGNANCY BOOKS
- 1. Baby 411: Clear Answers and Smart Advice for Your Baby’s First Year by Ari Brown
- 2. What to Expect When You’re Expecting by Heidi Murkoff
- 3. On Becoming Baby Wise: Giving Your Infant the Gift of Nighttime Sleep by Robert Buckman, M.D.
- 4. The Happiest Baby on the Block by Harvey Karp
- 5. Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth by Ina May Gaskin
- 6. Belly Laughs by Jenny McCarthy
- 7. Bringing Up Bebe by Pamela Druckerman
- 8. Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy by Mayo Clinic
- 9. The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding by Diane Wiessinger
- 10. Expecting Better by Emily Oster
Pregnancy Books Reviews
1. Baby 411: Clear Answers and Smart Advice for Your Baby’s First Year by Ari Brown
When you have your first child, you can have a lot of questions and calling your baby’s pediatrician at all hours of the night can make you seem pretty annoying to their Doctor, even if they won’t say it. With Baby 411: Clear Answers and Smart Advice for Your Baby’s First Year by Ari Brown, you can have a guide to what your child may be going through during their first year.
At a little over 600 pages, Dr. Ari Brown, official spokesperson for the American Academy of Pediatrics, offers new parents a guide book to help them through the first year with their baby. Covering topics from how to pick a pediatrician to detailed nutrition information that you can use as a step-by-step guide to achieve successful breastfeeding, the introduction of solid foods and formulas as well as some simple steps to help you avoid food allergies in your child.
Why we love it – With its valuable knowledge and recommendations from celebrity moms, such as Chelsea Clinton, the Baby 411: Clear Answers and Smart Advice for Your Baby’s First Year by Ari Brown is one pregnancy book that should be one every parent’s bookshelf.
2. What to Expect When You’re Expecting by Heidi Murkoff
Touted as America’s Pregnancy Bible, What to Expect When You’re Expecting by Heidi Murkoff has become one of the most trusted pregnancy books on the market. With the book in its 5th edition, it has only increased in the amount of information and benefits that it can provide and expectant parent.
With over 650 pages of in depth knowledge to help any expectant mom to be, the latest edition includes advice for dads, newly updated medical coverage information, including information on the Zika virus, prenatal screenings and medication safety during pregnancy. With a brand new section that covers postpartum birth control and current lifestyle trends including juice bars, e-cigarettes, health food fads and GMOs to name a few, this book has you covered.
Why we love it – There is a very good reason why What to Expect When You’re Expecting by Heidi Murkoff is seen as the Pregnancy Bible for Americans. With its ever expanding wealth of knowledge and coverage of topics that are important to parents expecting a child now, it is very easy for us to say this is the top rated Pregnancy Book on our list.
3. On Becoming Baby Wise: Giving Your Infant the Gift of Nighttime Sleep by Robert Buckman, M.D.
Once your baby comes home, there can be a great deal of joy flowing throughout your home. But when it’s time to go bed for the night, its may not be as easy as some new parents think it should be. With the book On Becoming Baby Wise: Giving Your Infant the Gift of Nighttime Sleep by Robert Buckman, M.D., parents can learn to synchronize their cycles so the whole family can sleep through the night.
Co-authored by Gary Ezzo, he and Dr. Buckman are two of the world’s leading experts in infant management concepts. With early chapters focusing on the exploration of everyday aspects of your little ones daytime activities including feeding time, wake time and naptime. By helping parents develop a plan to both meet the needs of your new bundle of joy and the entire family, which when applied can work wonders for your growing family.
Why we love it – Now in its 5th edition, On Becoming Baby Wise: Giving Your Infant the Gift of Nighttime Sleep by Robert Buckman, M.D. has been printed in 16 different languages around the world helping new families create a routine to help manage their child’s routine throughout the day.
4. The Happiest Baby on the Block by Harvey Karp
Having a newborn baby in the house can be one of the most magical things that any new family can experience, until it’s time to go to bed. Newborns, who have spent the last nine months or so inside mommy’s womb can be very cranky when it comes to going to bed. With the book, The Happiest Baby on the Block by Harvey Karp, parents can learn his techniques to help soothe them off into a deep, restful sleep.
The newest edition, fully revised, has been updated to include the latest insights on issues that may affect your little one’s sleep behavior such as bed sharing, breastfeeding, swaddling and the risk of SIDS. Based on 4 concepts, Dr. Karp’s method can be successful for your child as well. These concepts include discussions on why your child still looks for a womb like sleeping area, even after birth, the “off switch” that all babies are born with to help calm them and the five easy steps to turn on their amazing calming reflex.
Why we love it – With its novel approach to helping your little one get some sleep and stay asleep through the night, the book The Happiest Baby on the Block by Harvey Karp is definitely worth a look by any parent who has a child struggling to sleep through the night.
5. Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth by Ina May Gaskin
When the time to give birth gets closer and closer, having a plan on how you want things to transpire on the big day is very important. For some women, they may opt to have a childbirth as natural as possible. With the book, Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth by Ina May Gaskin, moms to be can have a guide on how to accomplish this if they so choose.
The nation’s leading midwife, Ina May Gaskin, tries to share the joys that come with giving birth to a child naturally and show women how to trust in the wisdom of their own bodies for a healthy and fulfilling experience. Providing any expectant mother comprehensive information on a wide variety of topics including reducing the pain without using drugs, whether or not an episiotomy is really necessary and common methods for inducing labor. With her book, an expectant mom can be prepared for what may happen while they give birth to their little one.
Why we love it – For some parents, going through childbirth as naturally as possible is very important to them. With Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth by Ina May Gaskin, any parent interested in doing so can have a guide to walk them through any question or concern they may have.
6. Belly Laughs by Jenny McCarthy
A lot of pregnancy books on the market portray pregnancy and childbirth as this magical journey. And it is. However, there is a lot of other things that those books tend to gloss over instead of telling it like it is. In the book, Belly Laughs by Jenny McCarthy peels the curtain back on those things that the other books won’t tell you about.
McCarthy, a mother herself, uses her in your face personality to peel back the veil on the magical aspects of pregnancy and childbirth. With her traditional type of humor, while at times, she can be a bit crass, those looking for a no holds barred account of the dirty little things that the other pregnancy and childbirth books won’t tell you, but they should. All in all, the bluntness and brashness of the book’s material is refreshing in a market of stagnant, sometimes boring books.
Why we love it – With its brashness and no holds barred look at the reality of being pregnant and giving birth to your child, Belly Laughs by Jenny McCarthy offers parents a no holds barred look at what the other books don’t tell you and is a great book that any first time mom may want to read.
7. Bringing Up Bebe by Pamela Druckerman
Debates on the best way to raise a child have raged on and on for centuries. Every generation or parent thinks that they know the best way to do so. Bringing Up Bébé by Pamela Druckerman take a look at the way that children born in Paris differ from those raised in America. In her journey, she sparked a national debate that any parent should read and will enjoy.
Druckerman, an American journalist, gave birth to her own child while in Paris and noticed subtle differences between infants in France, compared to those in the United States. Ever the journalist, she started to research why and how French children started to sleep through the night at two to three months of age or played by themselves while their parents relaxed and had a coffee. The book offers a night and day look at the differences on how we raise our children. The discoveries that the author makes about why French children are raised, makes the book hard to put down.
Why we love it –.For any soon to be parent or new parents, reading Bringing Up Bébé by Pamela Druckerman can offer a glance at how other parts of the world raise their children and give us a glimpse of what we may be doing right and what we may be doing wrong.
8. Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy by Mayo Clinic
The Mayo Clinic, one of the most prestigious hospitals in the world, works to help people live the healthiest lives they can and of course, that can apply to your pregnancy as well. With their book, Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy, they have provided a handy guide to any soon to be parent a reliable source of information that can be used every step of the way.
Featuring a week-by-week updates on how your little one is doing inside mommy’s womb as well as month-to-month changes that mom’s body will go through as well as a 40-week pregnancy calendar, symptoms guide and an important pregnancy decisions review, the Mayo Clinic Guide is a book any parents will be coming back to over and over again.
What we love it – With its weekly and monthly breakdowns to help moms and dads keep track of where their baby is, the Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy by Mayo Clinic is easily one of the best pregnancy week by week books on the market today.
9. The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding by Diane Wiessinger
Many women can have trouble after their child is born with learning how to breastfeed. Whether its positioning or their child just isn’t latching on correctly, it can cause a lot of stress for a new mom to go through. With the book The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding by Diane Wiessinger, learning to breastfeed comfortably can make it a much more rewarding experience.
Now in its 8th edition, the dedicated and internationally respected La Leche League works to support nursing and expectant moms and had set the standard for the education and empowerment of mothers using this natural art for countless generations. With their guide retooled and updated for today’s moms and lifestyles, any mom will benefit from the range of valuable knowledge presented in the book. From how to prepare for breastfeeding during pregnancy to expressing and storing breast milk, it can offer a multitude of beneficial information.
Why we love it – With it’s real-mom wisdom and new insights about the subject of breastfeeding, The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding by Diane Wiessinger can help make the process of breastfeeding once your baby has arrived a much easier and rewarding concept.
10. Expecting Better by Emily Oster
When you become pregnant, it feels as though right along with the good news of having a little one on the way, you’re also given a list of the things you cannot consume without ever really getting a clear explanation as to why? In the book Expecting Better by Emily Oster, the author takes a look at why to see if they are truly valid or not.
While she was pregnant, Emily Oster was given the same don’ts as any other parent and evauated the information behind some of the most accepted rules when it comes to pregnancy and found some to be misguided and others to be completely wrong. Explaining everything in detail from the real effects of caffeine to the strange dangers associated with gardening, the author debunks the myths that have been followed forever so that moms to be can relax and have a glass of wine every once in a while.
Why we love it – Taking a fresh look at the standard accepted rules of what not to do while pregnant, Expecting Better by Emily Oster is a breath of fresh air to any expectant mom feeling a little constricted by what she is being told she can’t do.
How We Chose the Top Pregnancy Books in Our List
Picking the right book to read to get ready for the big day shouldn’t be one of the hardest things you have to do during pregnancy, but if you look at any bookstore, there can be literally hundreds of titles. When we chose our 10 best, we wanted to ensure that they met a specific set of criteria before we recommended them, which criteria included:
A pregnancy book should be informative. Finding a book that helps you not only get ready for when your little one arrives, but can also answer questions you may not have even thought of is one to look out for. The information should be concise, helpful and prepare you for the big day.
While if you’re reading a work of fiction, diagrams and illustrations may not be the best thing to see within its pages, with a pregnancy book, diagrams and images can help an expectant mother know what may come on the horizon. Diagrams can also give an expectant mom and idea of where her little one may be in her womb.
Anyone can write a book about any topic, but when it comes to what to expect or how to prepare when you’re pregnant and what the next 10 months might entail, reading the advice of an expert can be a better option than someone without any credibility at all. Choosing a book from a well-known author in the field or a popular book that has seen many different editions can make the advice that is offered much easier to trust and follow.
Some of the best pregnancy books come from mom’s who went through an ordeal while pregnant or may have had a difficult birth. These kinds of books can show a mom to be that even though a difficult birth can be hard to go through, they do happen and it can help them empathize and relate to other moms-to-be.
When looking for a play yard for your child, finding one that has received a certification stating that the play yard was tested for quality and safety by and independent source is something that parents should definitely look out for. This seal is provided by the JPMA or Juvenile Products Manufacturing Association. Through this Association, products with this seal are some of the best quality and safest items on the market.
Benefits of a pregnancy book
While there seem to be less and less people out there these days who like to read, finding the right pregnancy book can be a page turner helping not only mom get ready for the coming bundle of joy but help dad as well. Some of the other benefits that come when you find a good pregnancy book include:
There is an old saying that knowledge is power. Reading pregnancy books when you may be trying or are already pregnant can give you an extreme amount of knowledge that can be very beneficial as you get further and further along in your pregnancy. With this knowledge, you can be ready for whatever might come your way and know whether it’s a normal part of pregnancy or something to be more concerned with.
Part of acquiring that knowledge is its ability to help you relax. Now, we understand that you may never fully relax while pregnant or be able to because of what your body is going through, but reading the information available from a book can help put your worries at ease, help you take a deep breath and enjoy the journey you, dad and your little bundle of joy are taking together.
Not many parents keep from planning ahead once they find out they are going to have a baby. The nine months of pregnancy can give you a great deal of time to plan how things will go once you go into labor. Many moms will create a birthing plan with their doctor and decide which hospital that they feel comfortable bringing their child into the world at.
While planning is certainly a very important matter for any family to decide on, being prepared for what happens after your baby comes home is something that a lot of parents will turn to a book for help with. When your little bundle of joy comes home, especially if it’s your first child, you will certainly have a lot of questions and the information found in some pregnancy books can help you be prepared for just about any situation that may come up.
Choosing what’s best for you
Choosing a pregnancy book to read can give you a lot of options to choose from. Go to any bookstore and you will find more options than you can imagine, so picking the best ones to help you get ready for your new little one or help you once they are here can be difficult.
With our list of the 10 Best Pregnancy Books in 2018, we wanted to highlight some books that stood out to us so you don’t have to spend all day at the bookstore and can spend your time relaxing and getting ready for your little bundle of joy.
Do you have a Pregnancy Books on our list? Let us know how you like it in the comment section below.
Last Update on the 19th of September 2017