The December List


Book This is a list of most of the books that have been mentioned on the December list. The same as on the Links page, you'll need to make your own judgement about what's good and what is bunk — I'm blindly posting everything. The comments next to the books are mostly whatever was posted on the list, not my own words. -Valerie

Back to the main December List page.

A Book Shopping Tip: Look for affordable books at the consignment store that sells affordable maternity clothes.

Books About Shopping:

  • Baby Bargains (2nd edition) by Denise and Alan Fields - They explain what products are, give reviews, and where current best prices were when they published. They have a top 10 list of baby equipment to have. They discuss things like clothing and bedding, e.g. Classic Pooh is only available from Red Calliope, and they give the phone number. They have a web site where they have updates to the book (although there may be a brand new one out), and also include reader feedback to their advice.

    Books About Pregnancy and Childbirth:

  • "Pregnancy, Childbirth, and the Newborn - The Complete Guide" by Simkin, Whalley, and Keppler. Very thorough - highly recommended. Tends to say "people used to believe X but now they know Y is true", which is useful information when people tell you that X is true.
  • "The Complete Book of Pregnancy and Childbirth" by Sheila Kitzinger - great book! Nice international perspective. Highly recommended by a lot of people on the list.
  • "A Child is Born" by Lennart Nilsson - Great pictures! The text isn't so useful though. May be meant as a coffee table book.
  • "Protecting Your Baby-To-Be" by Margie Profet. Offers an explanation of why we have morning sickness and what foods may cause birth defects. Has lots of leading edge theories that haven't yet been proved or disproved.
  • "Immaculate Deception II - Myth, Magic, and Birth" - very alarmist, not terribly useful.
  • The Girlfriend's Guide to Pregnancy - some people say it's funny and informative; other people say it is full of weird assumptions.
  • What to Expect When You're Expecting
  • My husband and I laughed at "What to Eat When You're Expecting"
  • I don't know if it's out on the market yet, but another really good book that is called "Pregnancy to Parenthood" or something along those lines. I keep looking for it at our bookstores, but haven't found it yet. It's filled with so much information that I loaned my copy to my doctor's office so that my doctor could read it! One of the author's is Ginny Brinkley, she's also co-written a few other pregnancy books too.
  • "Gentle Birth Choices" - Has some info about writing a birth plan.

    Books About VBAC:

  • Natural Birth After Cesarean: A Practical Guide By Johanne C. Walters, Karis Crawford

    Books about Breastfeeding:

  • "The Nursing Mother's Companion" by Sheila Huggins. Great book -- very open minded (says breastfeeding is best but doesn't get all preachy about bottle feeding). Discusses how to breastfeed, and then has a huge number of troubleshooting sections to discuss specific problems you might run into. Has reviews of the various breast pumps on the market.
  • "So That's What They're For" by Janet Tamero. Very funny but filled with excellent advice and diagrams.
  • _Eat Well, Lose Weight While Breastfeeding_ has very sensible recommendations along with some menus, recipes, and information about breastfeeding and weight loss.
  • "The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding" has lots of good, helpful, encouraging info.

    Books About Babies:

  • _What to Expect the First Year_
  • _The First Year of Life_
  • _Our Babies, Ourselves_ by Meredith F. Small
  • "Caring for your Baby & Young Child: Birth to Age 5" - Dr. Sheldon and the American Acadamy of Pediatricians. Very helpful. It has several sections. The first deals with before the baby is born, this you will need, what to consider (i.e. breast-bottle, circ-no circ). Then it breaks down the baby's development in age groupings. What they are going through in a certain month, what developmental things they can do, etc. Then it has a section on Emergencies - what to do, etc. This book is a very good reference.
  • _Dr. Mom_ (Marianne Neifert)
  • Anything by T. Berry Brazelton.

    Books About Baby Names:

  • "20,001 Names for Baby" by Carol McD. Wallace. Has names and their meanings.
  • "Beyond Jennifer & Jason" - Not a lot of "meaning" info, but plenty of other useful info, like lists of ultra-feminine girls names, wimpy boys names, US Presidents names, singular names (there's only one Oprah, for example).

    Books About Parenting:

  • 'The Discipline Book' by Dr Sears. He describes the attachment parenting style at length. Also _The Pregnancy Book_, _The Birth Book_, and _The Baby Book_ by Sears. Some Sears-related links: Dr. and Mrs. William and Martha Sears, Ask the Sears from, About Dr. Bill & Martha Sears on ParentTime.
  • "Dr. Spock's Baby and Child Care" - Dr. Spock. Great book, good as a quick reference. You may or may not agree with his dietary recommendations.
  • "Parent Power: A Common Sense Approach to Parenting in the 90's and Beyond" - John Rosemond.
  • "Babywise" by the Ezzos - very controversial book; talks about taking charge of your baby rather than letting the baby run the household.
  • Many people feel that sleeping with your baby can reduce the risk of SIDS. Dr. Sears has a very good book on this subject called "SIDS: A Parent's Guide to Understanding and Preventing Sudden Infant Death Syndrome."
  • I confess I don't have a general purposes baby book in the house, but one of my faves is Dr. Mom by Marianne Neifert, who is a ped. with 5 kids. Most of Dr.

    Books For Stay-at-Home Moms:

  • Miserly Moms - Living on one income in a two income economy, by Jonni McCoy
  • "Staying Home Instead: Alternatives to the two-paycheck family." Christine Davidson
  • "Coming home to raise your children - a survival guide for moms" Christine Field
  • "Home by Choice: A Decision every mother must face" Brenda Hunter
  • "Staying home: from full time professional to full time parent" Darcie Sanders and Martha Bullen
  • "At home Motherhood - Making it work for you" Cindy Tolliver


  • Twelve Months of Monastery Soups -- Brother d'Avila-Latourette. Has loads and loads of wonderful soup recipes, many of which do not use any meat at all. Every recipe we've made has been great!
  • Another book on a similar theme that we use that again, we have found to be great. It's got basic recipes and also special breads for holidays and celebrations. It's called Secrets of Jesuit Breadmaking; the author is Brother Curry. They may be celibate, but if these recipes are any indication, those guys eat well.....
  • A co-worker told me about a book she bought that has a lot of good information on what foods are age-appropriate, and what to look for when buying them, as well as how to prepare them, etc. Apparently this book is not available in stores, so the ordering information is as follows - Contact:
    Kristi Martin
    Multiple Miracles
    11865 SW Tualatin RD, #99
    Tualatin, OR 97062
    e-mail address - D-T-M4@MSN.COM
    The cost was about $20.00 or so. The author's name is Ruth Yaron. There was a new edition published in July. You can also call the publisher at 717-876-1896 (I have NOT confirmed this number), or write to them at F J Roberts Publishing, P.O. Box 34, Archbald, PA 18403. The website for this book is
  • One of my favorites that we use for the whole family is _Baby, Let's Eat!_ Creative and nutritional recipes for youngsters and everyone else.

    Miscellaneous Books:

  • Books by Dr. Ferber.
  • "Raising Strong Daughters" - Gadeberg. A lot of mothers on the November 1996 list recommend this reading.
  • The Birth of a Mother: How the Motherhood Experience Changes You Forever by Daniel N. Stern, Nadia Bruschweiler-Stern, Alison Freeland
  • Motherless Daughters" helped me [Susan B.] immensely understand how my girls could be feeling at specific times in their life. Even though they have a mother now, there was a period of time they went without, and I'm sure times now, when they yearn for their birth mother. Great Book. Author: Hope Edelman
  • The Hip Mama's Survival Guide - it's a riot... but also full of sane advice.
  • How to Childproof Your Dog
  • Baby Let's Eat! by Rena Coyle has helpful information on nutrition, and the recipes are divided by age of the child.
  • Planning a Precious Goodbye - a book that offers help for parents of babies who are terminally ill.

    Books for Kids:

  • The little board books by Boynton
  • Pat the Bunny and Goodnight Moon are classics
  • The Eric Carle books (like _The Very Hungry Caterpillar_) are available in board books
  • Board and cloth books are good for young children as they are less easy to tear up, and a baby would as soon put them in his mouth as look at them!
  • The Runaway Bunny
  • Good nursery rhymes, Mother Goose books or Dr. Seuss books.
  • The Ann Geddes books. There are some alphabet and number ones, and one on colors. They have great photos -- the ones I have found for babies have no soft pages, all hard cardboard pages.
  • "Baby, Oh Baby, The Places You'll Go" - a book to read to a fetus before it is born.
  • Go to the library a LOT.

    Off Topic:

  • Several people on the list like the books by Diana Gabaldon. She writes a series called either "Outlander" or "Cross Stitch", depending on what country you are in.

    Back to the main December List page.