Customer Reviews


780 Reviews
5 star:
 (529)
4 star:
 (163)
3 star:
 (42)
2 star:
 (21)
1 star:
 (25)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favorable review
The most helpful critical review


795 of 818 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Controversial? Possibly. But still worth reading and here's why...
As is the case with many books comparing American parenting styles with that of other countries, some potential readers have felt opinionated - even defensive - before even buying the book.While I certainly haven't concluded that French parenting is "right" and American parenting is "wrong", this intriguing book deserves a fair chance - one obtained by reading it - but...
Published on February 7, 2012 by Kcorn

versus
391 of 424 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Don't toss the bébé out with the bath water!
I have to admit that I did not immediately want to read this book, since the article version I read online seemed very different from my own views about parenting. But my father bought it and lent it to me, and it turned out to be a very entertaining and easy read. Druckerman does a fabulous job building a narrative out of her experience and weaving together personal...
Published on February 23, 2012 by Oregon Farm Mama


‹ Previous | 1 278 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

795 of 818 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Controversial? Possibly. But still worth reading and here's why..., February 7, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
As is the case with many books comparing American parenting styles with that of other countries, some potential readers have felt opinionated - even defensive - before even buying the book.While I certainly haven't concluded that French parenting is "right" and American parenting is "wrong", this intriguing book deserves a fair chance - one obtained by reading it - but some initial "reviews" were written by people who simply refused to read a book comparing American and French parenting techniques.

So what will will you find in Bringing Up Bebe? What makes this one worth a look?

To start with, the author, Pamela Druckerman, does not come off as someone who is crazy about France, let alone French parenting - at first. As she writes early on, "I'm not even sure I like living here" although she does change her tune later. She came to her opinions about French parenting slowly and she backs up her main points with plenty of research studies as well as techniques she learned from French parents and parenting authorities. As a result she concludes that "the French have managed to be involved without becoming obsessive. " They aren't waiting on their kids hand and foot and they don't assume that they have to push their children to succeed. Even so, she notes that she hadn't thought she was supposed to admire French parenting. So consider her a reluctant convert to French methods of parenting.

Druckerman observes that there doesn't appear to be a relentless drive to get babies and children to various lessons or such activities as early swimming lessons. A neighbor was content to let her children simply find ways to play, often with old toys or perhaps by exploring her outdoor environment.

Meals are also handled differently with set times for eating and with children being expected to exert enough self-control to wait hours in between meals. Vegetables, varied types of cheese, and other foods American kids might snub are not only served but actually eaten.

Then there are the studies. They are certainly food for thought and perhaps some spirited debate. One study notes that mothers in Columbus, Ohio find child care twice as unpleasant as mothers in Rennes, France. There is the University of Texas study that concludes that French mothers aren't concerned with accelerating their children's cognitive development or academic achievement. Instead, they are comfortable with letting their kids simply be children while they still can. The author cites another study which indicates that 90 percent of fifteen-year-olds eat their main meal with their parents - compared to 67 percent of those in the United States.

The author took detailed notes as she observed French parents. She learns that they expect their babies to start sleeping through the night within no more than a few months - or even in the first month. They ask Druckerman if her baby is "doing her nights" (sleeping through the night).

Admittedly, a certain number don't...but a fair number do because their parents use "the Pause" , not responding immediately to a baby's cries. When Druckerman tries using "the Pause" her own baby starts sleeping through the night, although...to be fair...she does wait until her baby is more than a few months old, unlike the French parents she describes.

Even infant mortality rates are lower in France, 57 percent lower than in America. There is an emphasis on a calm pregnancy and not eating too much. This doesn't mean starving but an overly obese mother isn't necessarily serving a baby's health. I won't stress this point too much because there could be many other factors that determine the possible difference in infant mortality rates between one country and another.

To sum it up, the author has discovered the "wisdom" of French parenting and has written a book that seems to be aimed at imparting that wisdom to American readers. Druckerman also seems to be encouraging parents to try and change the way American parents perceive children,to not base their lives so much around the kids. To be clear, the parenting advice here is centered on children, not teenagers, as French teenagers are given more freedom but in Druckerman's view also seem to have less cause to rebel.

I did have some issues with this book. The first chapter has far too much info about Druckermans' career before moving to France as well as her time meeting and dating her husband-to-be. This takes up an entire chapter. I wanted to get to the parenting observations more quickly. The book consists mostly of personal observations and Druckerman's parenting experiences which are also peppered with interviews with such people as the French "Doctor Spock" as well as other experts. I'm sure it will be controversial and from what I've seen and read it already is. Even so, this book deserves to be judged based on its contents.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


391 of 424 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Don't toss the bébé out with the bath water!, February 23, 2012
By 
Oregon Farm Mama (Northwestern Oregon, United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Bringing Up Bébé: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting (Hardcover)
I have to admit that I did not immediately want to read this book, since the article version I read online seemed very different from my own views about parenting. But my father bought it and lent it to me, and it turned out to be a very entertaining and easy read. Druckerman does a fabulous job building a narrative out of her experience and weaving together personal anecdotes with strong research. As a work of non-fiction, it is highly enjoyable to read and thought provoking.

However, there is no question this book will also be read as a "parenting book" rather than just a "book about parenting." And, it does, at points, venture into "parenting book" territory, even though Druckerman never uses the imperative tense or claims ultimate authority. But, she does consistently present "French parenting" in a very positive light, and in every contrast to American examples, French examples come out ahead. I have very little experience with this culture myself, so I certainly can't judge how consistent this parenting style actually is, so I have to take her word for that. It wouldn't surprise me that a centralized European nation would have a more consistent parenting style than the mish mash of approaches here in the states. Given that "French parenting" is always presented within a very reasonable seeming paradigm of success, there is definitely a feeling of "this is a very good way to do things" throughout.

And, certainly, the ideas that overlap with successful parenting in the U.S. (often called "authoritative" parenting in the states) seem good. As a vegetable farmer, I especially loved the chapter about food and how to help our kids learn to enjoy a wide range of flavors -- so refreshing that parents aren't coercing kids into eating vegetables for their "health" and instead expect them to do so out of enjoyment!

But some of the cultural notions struck me as more negative than Druckerman allowed in her exploration. A few examples that stood out to me: the 99% (or so) epidural rate, the low breastfeeding rate, and the emphasis on infant/child independence from birth. The lack of natural births in France (or even the opportunity to choose one) is treated as very sensible (meanwhile, to the north in the Netherlands -- also a sensible country -- over a quarter of all births occur without medication at home). Druckerman mulls over the lack of breastfeeding for a few paragraphs but it's a minor exploration of what seems like a very big thing to me.

But the idea that even newborn babies need to start being independent from parents struck me as especially ... off? Scary? Potentially damaging? Going against instinct? I tried to keep an open mind when reading these bits, and the reasoning in the book is compelling (babies sleeping through the night at 3 months is always compelling!). But, from my reading elsewhere, most of the current science of infant development points to different conclusions about human newborns.

The human newborn/mother connection is strongly supported by biology on many counts. So, the idea that "the pause" (wherein a mother waits 5 minutes or so before respond to nighttime crying) is a good and scientific-based thing is hard for me to swallow -- I couldn't help thinking of how hard it would be to do as a new mom. When I first became a mother, I felt strong physical and instinctual desire to hold my baby as much as possible and be near him and care for him at night -- I didn't do it because I felt it was "good" for him; it was truly my #1 desire, and I think that is the result of strong and successful bonding. (Interestingly, there is a world famous French OB, Michel Odent, who worries very much about the role medicated birth plays in French mothers lack of bonding to their babies. He talks at length about the "love hormones" that are released during an unmedicated birth and how essential they are for creating those necessary human attachments. He wasn't mentioned in the book.)

That being said, I do think the French (according to Druckerman) are right in believing that children need to be treated as people from birth and allowed opportunities for autonomy -- but in my experience children begin pushing for that when they are ready. We as parents can then respond appropriately. Overall, I was struck by how much of the book focused on detaching from our children rather than bonding with them in appropriate ways and then letting them push off from us by giving them space. Even though Druckerman tells us so-and-so-mother is a warm, nurturing mother, the examples and emphasis is often on being apart or not interacting in playful ways. I couldn't help wondering when French parents and children PLAY together ... maybe they don't?

I would wholly agree that the American style of parenting she describes seems unhealthy in another extreme. Kids obviously need to their own space to develop as people. However, as a mother of a toddler, I rarely see the American extremes she describes -- but I don't live in New York City so maybe parents in my rural community are less anxious and less "helicopter"-like. We can have dinners with friends and have adult conversations, but we also like a good parent-child racing game at a party (especially since often for the dads this social time is also weekend family time). Because of my own experience, I couldn't help feeling like her "American parent" was a bit of a "strawman" in this argument. Since the American parenting seems exaggerated in its anxiousness and lack of control, I have to also wonder ultimately how much of the French examples are exaggerated too (or, at least, are the good examples that stood out once Druckerman started observing the perceived differences).

In closing, I would recommend this book if someone wants a good read and is curious about how France parents its children. I can honestly say I will be mulling over some of these ideas ones for a while (especially the ones that push on my own existing understandings of babies and children). It was also good to have some of my own weaknesses as a parent brought to light by contrast -- I have begun trying to "educate" my two year-old son in how to be patient, and it has already helped both of us get through the day calmer.

But, if a reader is interested in some different evidence based views on babies and their need for connection, I recommend Our Babies, Ourselves: How Biology and Culture Shape the Way We Parent and/or Attached at the Heart: 8 Proven Parenting Principles for Raising Connected and Compassionate Children. Also, it's not my favorite book in the world (in part because it's a challenging read), but The Continuum Concept: In Search Of Happiness Lost (Classics in Human Development) is a classic example of another very successful parenting culture that has embraced a different set of values (when it comes to infancy at least).

ETA: I recently read French Kids Eat Everything: How Our Family Moved to France, Cured Picky Eating, Banned Snacking, and Discovered 10 Simple Rules for Raising Happy, Healthy Eaters. I would highly recommend it to folks who are interested in French parenting. It is also a very delightful read and goes into way more detail about how the French think about food and parenting. As a "parenting book," I even found it useful and was inspired to make some major and minor changes in my son's eating habits (most notably cutting way back on the non-stop flow of snacks to encourage him to eat more at meals -- it worked!). This book is also a tad more critical of French culture (when appropriate), which was refreshing after reading Bringing Up Bebe.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


266 of 288 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Book, February 8, 2012
By 
I am an active father of young kids. So, when I read the excerpt in the Wall Street Journal, I found Druckerman's thoughts about parenting squared with mine: does parenting really need to be an obsessive, combative and all-consuming endeavor? Is there another way in which parents can be fully committed to our children, teach them independence and even enjoy ourselves a bit.

I picked up the book and devoured it. The writing is highly approachable and even a bit funny. This is not a "how-to" book. It is a series of informed observations about how Parisians approach parenting. Druckerman shares anecdotes and then supports them with some research. There are no magic tricks; just a shift in behavior and approach that the author shares with us. Some of it makes great sense, for example, The Pause and Education instead of Discipline.

Even in the highly connected and flat world, observational skills and analysis of what may right in front of us can force us to reconsider what we do. Druckerman delivers a thoughtful, thought provoking and entertaining book.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


223 of 253 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars How can you review a book you haven't read?, February 8, 2012
By 
This review is from: Bringing Up Bébé: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting (Hardcover)
A lot of these one-star reviews are from people who haven't even read the book. Like other reviewers, I gobbled up this book in under 48 hours because it's simply that good. It's not a how-to manual. The author is not a doctor or self-proclaimed child-rearing expert. She's not telling anyone how to live their lives. The book is the story of her experience as an American mom in France, and what she learned as a result of her investigation into how the French raise their children. It's funny, charming, well-written--and in the first person. Let the WSJ and Today Show run with hyperbolic headlines if they must. But don't judge the book by that standard.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Poses important questions, May 9, 2012
This review is from: Bringing Up Bébé: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting (Hardcover)
As soon as I heard about this book, I wanted to read it. I am the mother of two young children, so I am right in the thick of the challenges presented by parenting. What has consistently surprised me is that my philosophy seems to be rather different from that of a lot of parents and, in fact, the more I read the more I thought my approach seemed closer to the French side of the equation than to the American side--though I also have a lot of American tendencies. What I really liked about this book was its sensitive portrayal of how both French parents and American parents love their children, but how their philosophies differ and how those differences might ultimately affect children. I think it's important to note right off that Druckerman isn't saying that American parenting is terrible and that French parenting is perfect, but she does raise a lot of very cogent points.

For example, there is a long discussion in the book about how French babies "do their night" (sleep through the night) long before American babies. Now, of course this is something of a blanket statement as Druckerman is speaking primarily about middle and upper middle class Parisians, but she offers up some compelling anecdotal evidence and, in the tradition of her journalism background, she also provides some research to back those anecdotes up. While American parents may be more prone to rushing immediately into the baby's room and picking the baby up, French parents tend to do what they call the "pause". This is merely a way of waiting for a few minutes to ensure that the baby is actually awake and in need of something rather than risking disturbing the baby's very normal, very noisy sleep pattern. Druckerman says French parents feel it's their duty to teach their children to sleep well. I found this interesting because I did my own version of the pause with both of my kids, and both of them slept through the night by the time they were around 6-7 weeks old. I've also read a great deal about sleep deprivation amongst American children. As Druckerman illustrates, well-intentioned parents may actually be teaching their kids that they need a parent to soothe them in order for them to fall asleep, which can present problems down the line.

I also was very interested in Druckerman's examination of the ways in which French parents interact with their kids versus the way American parents do this. There is a lot of pressure in our society to be a super parent. It seems I read more and more articles about how terribly overscheduled American kids are, and how stressful this is for them. Maybe there is something to the idea that French parents allow their young ones to simply play and explore rather than going at them with the flash cards. It's only natural for all parents to want to help provide their children a foundation for success later in life, but this book shows how we Americans may be going just a bit too overboard in this respect.

Especially noteworthy are the passages that discuss France's social structure and how it benefits kids. A huge part of the challenge of being a parent in the U.S. is a lack of social structure: there is no socialized medicine here, parents pay exorbitant fees for childcare (as I know from personal experience), and our investment in education is inferior to that of France, which provides state funded preschool for children beginning at age two. Social welfare is a very taboo issue in the U.S. right now, but Druckerman shows how the French are investing in their children's futures in ways that provide them with an advantage that many American children don't enjoy. I think the U.S. could really learn something from this.

Yet, as I said, this is not necessarily a paean to France. Druckerman is very up front about her ambivalence about living in France, and she exposes the inherent sexism that plagues France. She claims that new mothers in the U.S. are given some leeway because there is the expectation they will be too busy caring for their children to attend to themselves, while there is a culture expectation in France that women will be back to their pre-baby bodies, perfectly dressed, and beautifully coiffed within weeks of having given birth. She also addresses the discrepancy in pay between French men and women (a gap that is sadly even larger in France than in the U.S.).

What I came away with from this book is the conviction that some sort of blend between the French and the American would be wonderful: a hybrid of the fairer pay for women in the U.S. with the subsidized daycare in France, ensuring that women can go back to work; the free preschool for French children combined with a more Americanized system of education, wherein teachers don't have such an authoritarian role in the classroom. I would love to see this book become a topic of national conversation. There is so much more we need to be doing in this country to support families and to provide better opportunities and outcomes for all children.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


82 of 92 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book might've actually changed my life, February 14, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This is not a how-to book, and yet, after reading it, I feel suddenly equipped to face all the many daily challenges my 20-month-old daughter throws at me. The thing this book made me realize was that I am already equipped with the necessary tools. I was just too afraid/confused/exhausted/frustrated/hopeless to use them.

What caught my attention about this book was Druckerman's assertion that Americans tend to blame a child's good or bad behavior on temperament, whereas the French assume patience can be taught to anyone. I often say, "My child has been this way since she was two weeks old." She's always been a very alert, active, charming, rebellious, impatient child. I believed it was my fate to never be able to take her in a store without enduring a temper tantrum. I was mostly hopeless that I would ever be able to control the force of nature that is my child.

Then I found Druckerman's book. I stayed up until 3 a.m. reading it because the middle of the night is the only time my child lets me get anything done. Aside from the parenting stuff, it was a fun read, an expatriate memoir (which I always enjoy) with a sense of humor and a gossipy inside look at the lives of other parents of toddlers from the U.S. and France.

But what makes me rate this book five stars is the parenting information. The French (or the segment of the French population Druckerman is describing) all share one philosophy on parenting, which boils down to teaching patience, not hovering, not feeling guilt over every little thing, and having confidence. Something about the idea of ONE philosophy made me feel so relieved. I've read about every kind of parenting philosophy there is, to the point that I almost never had confidence I was doing the right thing. I had too many questions, too much conflicting advice in my head. If I don't give her a snack when she wants one, am I creating an issue with food? If I stop her from tearing around the store like a maniac, am I crushing her will? The French would say no - teaching limits and not giving in IS a way of respecting your child.

I know my child could tell I lacked conviction all this time. Now she can tell I don't anymore. I woke up the morning after reading this book, feeling for the first time that I actually had the power to improve my child's behavior and make life easier for us all. Already, my daughter's behavior is remarkably better, after implementing a few of the philosophies in this book (and the breakfast-lunch-snack-dinner schedule) for only a few days. There is much less whining, no full-blown tantrums, no begging for sweets constantly, and she enthusiastically ate her brown rice and broccoli lunch today! I haven't yelled once or had to put her in time out, which makes me happier and less stressed out. The best part is SHE seems happier, too. We even went to the grocery store tonight without a single meltdown!

Edited to add a follow-up!

My daughter I talked about in this review is now 2.5 years old, and I have a new 2-month-old daughter. I had big plans to follow the French rules for getting the baby to sleep through the night - so far unsuccessful, but it's early yet! My older daughter is still a "very alert, active, charming, rebellious, impatient child," and she still throws a tantrum or two every day. But I do still feel better, calmer, less out of control of the situation, and I think this book helped with that. When I re-read this review just now for the first time in months, I was surprised to read how hopeless and out of control I felt back then. I don't feel that way anymore. That's probably some of my own doing, and some my child growing up a bit, but I do think this book helped me get started on a better path. I think the key thing I gleaned from this book is to relaaaaax and not put so much pressure on myself to be perfect. I feel more like one of the French moms in this book, not consumed by guilt all the time (though of course I still feel it sometimes!).
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


56 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars as a French reader..., March 3, 2012
This review is from: Bringing Up Bébé: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting (Hardcover)
(first of all, excuse my english ;-)

As a French reader, I cannot really imagine how controversial this book is in the US... because Pamela Druckerman description is exactly what we do in France.
I agree with her analysis of the four meals a day, of "the Pause" (which is, according to us, just good sense, and not conscious at all!), the important of having a life as a woman and not only as a mother (séduction, losing weight, sexuality... are very encouraged and important after having a baby, to be considered as an entire woman... and i think it's good!), the importance of saying no, of having time for ourselves, to let the entire family breathe!
She could have added some perfection in her analysis of our way to see breastfeeding, stay at home mothers (Paris is not France, we can find women who choose to stay at home... but it is true that even them keep a life, pleasure, whith few guilt). Don't forget too that France has a high rate of unemployment, women at work are not treated equally as men (less paid)... things are not so easy for french women. But I admitt that's not the purpose of the book... The author is right when she sees a similar philosophy of educating our children, from north to south of France.

I had a lot of pleasure reading this book... very instructive for us Franch, making us realize the chance we have with "crèches", "école maternelle", etc...
A very useful "guide", for American parents but for the French too!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


91 of 107 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Misrepresentational, Exaggerated, March 1, 2012
This review is from: Bringing Up Bébé: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting (Hardcover)
I applaud the effort, and I was looking forward to reading this after hearing her on NPR and reading a couple of reviews. It seemed like the perfect thing to read as a half Francophile/half-French mom who's certainly not averse to suggestions on how to expand her children's tastes and good behaviors. That said, this book is a fantasy and a significant misrepresentation of parenting, let alone French parenting. As someone whose entire family still lives in Paris, I'd say one thing you end definitely up feeling among French people is that your "Americanisms" are "taches" (strikes against you) that can't usually be fixed. This fact alone could have been Druckerman's entree into making French culture accessible, but she only chronicles it and leaves the reader feeling low.
It's at times humorous, if you look at it through the right lens, but Druckerman seems to take 90% of her time lamenting about how unfortunate it is that she's got such "terrible" American habits, holding up zero pride in who she actually is and where she comes from. I'm not an overzealous patriot, but take some pride! She talks about all the "whiny brats" she encounters upon occasionally re-entering New York, which I must say, is almost as common in France, though it is met with far more spankings and coldness from their parents.
What she doesn't spend any time talking about is how such an upbringing (I feel I can say this as a French person) risks producing the grown version of many of these French children, Parisians in particular: people who are rude, self-centered, jealous (taught in school with an emphasis on intense academic competition and public ridicule for those who do not excel), intolerant, and quite frequently, the opposite of kind. She does not address the effects or outcome of a culture who does not allow their children to express themselves freely and frequently. She also fails to draw the conclusion that these are the very adults who look down their noses at those who neither know nor follow their secret rules for raising children.
Since the majority of us don't have the time or the luxury to decode these mores, it's a real shame that she gave such a snobby, inaccessible version of French parenting culture to the masses. She claims at the beginning to not even really like France, and it seems she took that as license to only draw superficial conclusions. I keep waiting for the book to get better, as I'm 2/3 through it, but I felt I needed to put in my review before other mothers purchase this book and end up feeling as I currently do:
If you are a mother whose time is extremely precious, I would recommend devoting it to a book that will not make you feel guilty and disappointed in yourself for turning out children who laugh a lot, smile a lot, play happily but yes, interrupt from time to time and prefer short meals and the company of their peers. Would I love it if my children (3 and 1 yr) could sit peacefully through a meal and demand fines herbes on their endive salad? Absolutely! That's why I bought the book! But there's so little HOW in here that I've not been able to justify the remainder. I know it's easy to critique from afar, and I wish I could say better things in this one and only book review I've ever written, but alas, I can't.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


35 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Entertaining Reminder About What's Also Possible, February 9, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This is a fun and entertaining read. I found myself laughing out loud more than once and finishing the book in less than 24 hours. The author describes in detail her observations about what (some) French parents have found to be possible in child rearing that many modern American parents may believe to not be possible: children who go to bed on time, don't constantly interrupt or throw food and parents who haven't completely sacrificed their own lives and adult relationships. It's an interesting discussion of where boundaries are set, how authority is communicated, and how children are allowed to explore and experience the world with independence. She gives an honest account of how these ideas have worked with her own children and where she's had difficulty or been uncomfortable, while at the same time trying to fully understand and communicate the subtly different philosophy of parents she's encountered in France.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Couldn't put it, or my two babies, down :), February 20, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Bringing Up Bébé: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting (Hardcover)
Full disclosure: I was a nanny in Paris 15 years ago and carry the city in my heart.
It's a great book! I have to assume that the Parisians described in the book to represent French people are as exaggerated as the New Yorkers she chooses to represent Americans. I couldn't always identify with what "Americans" do and think, but it's a small matter.
The book was hugely entertaining and informative. I found myself rooting for her, her children, and her husband to--I don't know--make it in France, keep "sage" and happy, and make friends. So as a narrative, it was great.
As a guidebook (which it was and at the same time was not), I also found it very interesting. My 2 month old, HALLELUJAH!, is sleeping through the night after one lousy week of The Pause. She never cries for long and not more than 1 time a night. That is worth the cost of 100 of this book. Also, my 15 month old seems to enjoy her meals more when I display the food, have her help me in the kitchen, and describe flavors. It's fun for both of us. I am working with her to quiet her fits and to understand her motives.
I feel empowered and encouraged to change how I address my family, to use reason, to use the framework of "education" instead of "respect." It's all little things, and very common sense (for Frenchies, though I as I read I discovered how many things about raising children I'd like to modify for my family).
A pleasure to read.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 278 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

Details

Bringing Up Bébé: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting
$25.95 $14.66
Temporarily out of stock. Order now and we'll deliver when available.
Add to cart Add to wishlist
Search these reviews only
Send us feedback How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you? Let us know here.