From Publishers Weekly
Like many mothers-to-be, Shapiro romanticized breastfeeding: "I envisioned tender mommy moments... nursing my baby." As a result, before daughter Sophie arrived, Shapiro followed the ignorance-is-bliss approach: "I remember thinking breastfeeding instruction was a waste of time. 'It's the most natural thing in the world.' " Surprise, surprise when she discovers it's significantly harder than Brooke Shields makes it look in The Blue Lagoon
. Mimicking the frank, humorous style of The Girlfriends' Guide to Pregnancy
, Shapiro relates, in frequently graphic detail, the perils of breastfeeding: tender breasts, engorgement, sore nipples, nursing injuries and cluster feedings. Over the course of Sophie's first year, Shapiro, with the help of lactation consultants and a nursing support group, becomes a breastfeeding advocate, proselytizing to new moms ("I found it difficult to fathom how easy nursing had gotten. My instinct was to spread the word"). Shapiro maintains an easy voice, though the book turns startlingly somber as she writes of September 11, 2001, which feels starkly out of place in this breezy memoir. Shapiro is this book's star, and Sophie (never mind husband Peter) plays a surprisingly small role. At times, Shapiro seems shallow, obsessing about her appearance and the commonness of her daughter's name. Mothers who formula feed will find little in this narrative; those who have struggled with breastfeeding, however, will laugh with empathy at Shapiro's tales of weight loss (or lack thereof), cabbage leaves (used to relieve engorgement) and the unending fluids that emerge from a nursing woman's body.
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"Shapiro's refreshingly comic voice pierces through the foggiest post-partum blues to commiserate, share advice, and point out the humor in those anxious days after a baby is born...In addition to being an undeniably entertaining read, this book gives readers a valuable advice and information about the first year of parenthood...Pregnant women contemplating breastfeeding will find the information in this book invaluable and Shapiro's account of her experiences motivating and inspiring. This entertaining and informative guide deserves a place right alongside the "Girlfriend's Guide" and "What to Expect" series on parenting shelves."--Foreword magazine
"Lisa Wood Shapiro's How My Breasts Saved the World is mother's milk for any new mama struggling with the confounding transformation from woman into human canteen."--Vanity Fair's