Reading Recommendations for New Parents
Congratulations, you're going to have a baby! You'll quickly discover that the world of parenting is vast, and the information overload from family, friends, the internet, and from books can be overwhelming. Where do you even start? We try to make things easier for you by giving you some book recommendations as a starting place.
Dr. Sears Series
Dr. Bill Sears, a pediatrician, and his wife, a registered nurse, have 8 children so this is experience and professional expertise talking!
What we like: Breastfeeding Book (everything you ever wanted to know but were too afraid to ask!) and the Baby Book (child development from 0 to toddler).
BTW: Check out kellymom.com wonderful resource for everything related to breastfeeding
Be prepared for: Recommendations for long breastfeeding, carrying babies in slings, sleep-sharing, etc. You may not agree entirely with their parenting style or philosophy but never hurts to consider a different point of view!
What to Expect When You're Expecting
Even non-parents have heard of Heidi Murkoff's, What to Expect When Youre Expecting
What we like: It goes through each month of pregnancy and discusses what you might be feeling and most of the time quite accurate. There are also good sections on planning for labor and delivery, the fathers role and special situations.
BTW: You can get a similar week by week update from
Be prepared for: Becoming aware of a whole lot more than you bargained for and imagining/ questioning all sorts of symptoms. Many mums and dads start their is this normal journey right with this book! Try to use it as a reference book vs. a text book that applies for everyone and everything.
Miriam Stoppard Books
Dr. Stoppard is the UK's Dr. Sears- a highly regarded childcare expert.
What we like: The information, including pictures of the fetus during its development stages, is very helpful and intriguing. The bestseller is Conception Pregnancy and Birth- a childbirth bible of sorts.
BTW: Her Baby Play and Learn Pack can be ordered on Amazon.
Be prepared for: Some practical but old world advice (Dr. Stoppard is 79!). The pics in the book are NSFW so probably keep your copy away from the reach of your curious preschooler!
Brain Rules for Baby
John Medina, a developmental molecular biologist and dad, bridges the gap between what scientists know and what parents practice.
What we like: All advice and rules are evidence based and grounded in research, but brought to life through anecdotes and real life examples that make it easy to understand and read. Also unlike other books that focus only on babies, this gives you principles for the crucial first five years.
BTW: There is also a book for adults by the same author- Brain Rules- which will make you value exercise and sleep even more!
Be prepared for: Consuming vast amounts of parent and children research, some that will make you question your own upbringing (beware, grandma!)
Solve Your Child's Sleep Problems
Dr. Ferber's classic book covers many of the sleep problems children encounter. New parents lose about 700 hours of sleep during the baby's first year, and this book claims to be the magic antidote.
What we like: It gives causes of most sleep problems from birth to adolescence and recommends an array of solutions for each so that parents can choose what works best for them.
BTW: Here's an article for a more humorous take on this topic:
Be prepared for: CIO the philosophy of letting babies cry it out. This may not work for you or baby or it might work only for the baby to change sleeping pattern in a few weeks!
No Cry Sleep Solution
Author of 12 parenting books and mom of 4, Elizabeth Pantley, offers an alternative to the crying it out method for sleep training. Based on her research, the book provides you with effective strategies to overcoming naptime and nighttime problems.
What we like: Use of gentle techniques to avoid crying. Focus on understanding why baby is waking and fixing problems with routines, new associations, and gradual changes in patterns.
BTW: There is a series of books by the same author that deal with discipline and separation anxiety.
Be prepared for: A healthy dose of common sense and re-iteration of the virtue of patience and value of instinct. Don't expect miracles or silver bullets.
Happiest Baby On the Block
Karp, a paediatrician in Santa Monica, California, and assistant professor at the School of Medicine, UCLA, offers a new method to calm and soothe crying infants.
What we like: Practical tips and to dos for what to do when babies are fussy and just wont stop crying.
BTW: Plenty of Youtube videos on the 5S techniques.
Be prepared for: Using this only for the first three months when your world will revolve around stuff like colic and swaddling- probably not of much use afterwards.
The New Contented Little Baby Book
Gina Ford, UK's top parenting expert, draws on more than twenty years of experience researching and studying the natural sleep rhythms and feeding patterns of babies to ease the stresses and worries of new parents.
What we like: The book, with its emphasis on routine, works wonders for many moms and babies- millions swear by its feeding and sleeping techniques.
BTW: There is a great FAQ section on child development on her site.
Be prepared for: Some disagreements and second thoughts as the author insists that for the advice in the book to work, you have to follow it completely. Many folks find it rigid and inflexible.
Loved this article?
Still got questions?
We're here to help! Book a FREE consultation with our Experts
Join 1 Million+ families who
love KinderPass 🎉
Get a personalized daily curriculum of over 1200 skill building activities
Book live consultations with child experts
Track growth, development milestones and identify red flags
Subscribe to our newsletter
Receive weekly advice and guidance on child development in your inbox