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The Baby Book: Everything You Need to Know About Your Baby from Birth to Age Two Paperback – January 19, 1993

421 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews Review

In their excellent (and hefty) resource guide, The Baby Book, attachment parenting specialists William Sears and Martha Sears have provided new parents with their approach to every aspect of baby care basics, from newborns to toddlers. Attachment parenting is a gentle, reasonable approach to parenting that stresses bonding with your baby, responding to her cues, breastfeeding, "wearing" your baby, and sharing sleep with your child. For those parents who worry about negative effects of this attention, the Sears say, "Spoiling is what happens when you leave something (or some person) alone on the shelf--it spoils."

From Library Journal

A pediatrician and an RN/childbirth educator have prepared a comprehensive guide for new parents. The authors encourage and describe "attachment parenting," a high-touch style that involves bonding, reading and responding to babies' cues, breastfeeding, and sharing the bed. Topics discussed range from birth and feeding to child safety and basic medical care. The discussion of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome includes 1992 research results and recommendations. This is the first title to discuss high-touch/attachment parenting in such detail, although Fitzhugh Dodson and Ann Alexander's Your Child: Birth to Age 6 ( LJ 11/1/86) covers many of the same topics. Because of its size and the need to refer to it frequently, the book would probably be most useful in parents' personal libraries. Recommended for public libraries and patient education collections.
- Mary J. Jarvis, Methodist Hosp. Medical Lib., Lubbock, Tex.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 704 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown; First Edition first Printing edition (January 19, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316779059
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316779050
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 1.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (421 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,226,302 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

William Sears, M.D., received his pediatric training at Harvard Medical School's Children's Hospital and Toronto's Hospital for Sick Children. He has practiced as a pediatrician for more than thirty years. Martha Sears is a registered nurse, childbirth educator, and breastfeeding consultant. The Searses are the parents of eight children. Drs. Robert and James Sears are both board-certified pediatricians at the Sears Family Pediatric Practice in San Clemente, California. All four authors live in southern California. More information about the Searses can be found at and

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

340 of 366 people found the following review helpful By John B. on January 10, 2000
Format: Paperback
My wife and I have used this book as a reference over and over again and I am always amazed at the relevance of the Sears' advice. But rather than go into specifics about the book's virtues (plenty of people have done that below), I would just like to comment on some of the negative criticism that other users have given this book. First of all, let me make it clear that (obviously) everyone is entitled to their opinions; I'm not trying to say that anyone HAS to like this (or any) book. But if you are going to publicly critique it, it's only fair that you present the information accurately and comment on real shortcomings, not imagined ones.
A reader from Dallas states: "Use this book with great caution. If you want nightly habitual feedings, crying for response, and other stressful habits built into your child, use this book." That's pretty scary sounding, but let me present another scenario: My wife and I have let our child (now two years old) share the bed with us since he was born and it has been an unmitigated pleasure throughout. Except for rare occasions, he has always slept through the night, has never needed a bottle to get to bed, and has never shown any signs of being unusually "needy". Also, my wife did not have to get out of bed to breastfeed him when he was still feeding at night [Newsflash: Pretty much ALL babies feed during the night when they are very young infants - don't blame that on co-sleeping]. Now that my wife is pregnant again, we have transitioned him into his own room with absolutely no fuss. In contrast, my sister has never let her baby sleep in bed with her and the baby used to get up twice a night for a year and a half.
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228 of 246 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 20, 2000
Format: Paperback
To read a book that reinforces my instincts! I am only sorry I did not buy this book in the first few weeks of motherhood. I read books that gave all kinds of advice that just didn't seem right. I have never let my baby "cry it out" even though parents, in-laws, and grandparents have all at some point told me I'm spoiling my child. At five months old, she is happy, well adjusted, and easily falls asleep on her own. Mothers and fathers take note-attachment parenting works!! I can actually sense how much trust my baby has in me. This book will be especially helpful to parents of colicky babies. It replaces the feelings of frustration and helplessness with compassion and understanding. I read a few negative reviews from those who found the Dr. Sears to be extreme. Attachment parenting can be incorporated into every lifestyle. I'm a stay at home Mom, but I don't ALWAYS wear my baby in a sling. And though I slept with her for the first few months, she now sleeps in her crib, and takes a morning nap with me. It's just a matter of knowing your baby and following his/her cues rather than following some ridiculous formula that is supposed to work for all babies. Yes, the book almost always puts the baby first. Isn't that the way it's supposed to be? Every aspect of parenting should be cherished rather than looked upon as an inconvenience. For those who truly want to bond with their babies-this is the book for you! And just a note to new, first time moms: I spent many nights in the first few weeks crying right along with my colicky baby. So many well-meaning moms gave me advice. Because I was new at the whole thing, I always doubted myself. Was I ever going to have a happy baby? Was she ever going to sleep through the night? What was I doing wrong?Read more ›
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29 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Jan A. Heirtzler on December 13, 1999
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm kind of surprised at some of the negative reviews of this book. Peole keep saying that co-sleeping and attachment parenting encourage undisciplined children, but if you read the follow-up book, "The Discipline Book," you'll see that's not necessarily the case. If a child knows she can trust you (through early experiences), she will be much less likely to have discipline problems later. Anyway, I got "The Discipline Book" before "The Baby Book" and was pleasantly surprised that it encourages setting limits APPROPRIATE TO THE CHILD and sees discipline as a continuum and not a one-time, spanking kind of thing. Their method of childrearing just seems totally natural to me, the kind of things mothers and fathers did for thousands of years before the medical establishment and society started butting in on childrearing. I think the book is a must for any new parent!
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117 of 138 people found the following review helpful By Orson Wang on June 25, 2002
Format: Paperback
There is not much that one can say that hasn't already been said. This book has stood the test of time; other know-it-all one-size-fits-all infant care books have not.
One observation that I have made is that you will not find this book promoted by popular baby stores such as "Babies R Us". Having visited many branches of such stores, I have never seen this book promoted in the book section. It dawned on me why. Dr. Sears' approach is decisively anti-consumerist. He strongly recommends breast feeding - nothing to buy here. He strongly recommends co-sleeping - no crib or sheets to buy. He recommends the use of a baby sling or baby carrier - OK, you can find such items at "Babies R Us", but this is meant as a replacement for a much more expensive stroller.
Bottom line: following the recommendations in this book means going against the grain set by product-dispensing corporations that are the center of a society centered around consumption. Read this book and think long and hard about what you believe and what you value in the role of a parent, and tune out all the noise around you including well-meaning family members.
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