Dr Miriam Stoppard New Pregnancy and Birth Book (the complete practical guide for all parents to be)
Rating out of ten - 9/10
My sister bought me Dr Miriam Stoppards book just days after I found out I was pregnant with my first child and I'm sure I read it cover to cover within one week. It wasn't put away in a drawer though it became my pregnancy bible for the next 8 months and is now a bit tatty looking to be honest. If there was ever anything mentioned at antenatal appointments I was sure to go home and check it out with Dr Stoppard and she rarely failed me, she covers everything about pregnancy to a certain extent and her step by step guide through conception and the 1st, 2nd and 3rd trimesters are very informative and ensured that I knew exactly what stage my developing baby was at every week of the pregnancy. It was invaluable to me during an exciting but also worrying time and I'm sure it will be brought out again during my next pregnancy for another 9 months of reassurance.
Heidi E. Murkoff Arlene Eisenberg & Sandee E. Hathaway What to Expect when you're expecting (third edition)
Rating out of ten - 7/10
This book is an interesting alternative to the many pregnancy and birth books that are available, though, I thought, not as informative as other books about the development of your baby or the various problems many women experience during pregnancy. I found that there was a lack of detailed drawings or photographs that are useful for understanding the development and position of the baby. It does however cover many of the things that most pregnant women worry about and much of the book is written in a question/answer style. The authors seem to have made a great job of anticipating the things that go through an expectant mothers mind and do their best to reassure while giving a full explanation of each issue. The book is divided into chapters with one chapter for each month of pregnancy and the first six weeks with your baby. Each chapter begins with a section about what to expect this month, what you might be feeling and a brief description about what's happening with your baby. This is followed by 'what you might be concerned about' with a long list of questions and detailed answers about the things you might worry about this month. Overall I found this book very interesting and worth reading but I wouldn't recommend making it the only baby book you buy if you want to find out every detail about pregnancy and birth.
Penny Simkin, Janet Whalley and Ann Keppler Pregnancy Childbirth and the Newborn (completely revised and updated by Jonathan Morris)
Rating out of ten - 5/10
Though this book is no doubt extremely accurate and informative about everything pregnancy related I personally found it difficult to enjoy or fully understand, the entire book is printed in black and white including the diagrams and photographs and the language was a bit too technical for me. I did find it useful for looking up the odd query that I had but I used it more like a dictionary than a book and I certainly couldn't have read it cover to cover.
Tracey Hogg (with Melinda Blau) Secrets of the Baby Whisperer
Rating out of ten - 9/10
After watching numerous episodes of 'The Baby Whisperer' on T.V. I decided to buy the book and I must say it was £10.99 well spent. Tracey Hogg's aim throughout the book is to help you understand and communicate with your new baby, her straight forward and common sense approach made a lot of sense to me and I found most of her advice very useful and fairly straight forward to implement. She explains that although all babies are unique most can be identified as a certain type, her quick quiz allows you to identify your new baby making understanding his needs a whole lot easier. Her routines are designed to make your life more manageable by giving you time to yourself while also helping your baby to be relaxed and content. They say that new baby's should come with manuals well this is the closest I've found to one.