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Parenting: A Guide for the Compulsive Reader

evkharper "tinker, tailor, academic, spy"
The list author says: "This is a list of the books we found most helpful as we prepared for the arrival of our first child. We looked for books that would give us a wide range of information, from the biological to the psychological and spiritual. We also wanted books that would treat fathers as fully involved parents, rather than outsiders in the family. And we wanted theologically sound Christian books--as you can see, most of what we ended up with is broadly evangelical, but if you know of solid Catholic or Orthodox books we'd love to hear about them too. None of the following is the whole story, but we think each one has some value and is worth consulting as you prepare to become parents."
Taking Charge of Your Fertility, 10th Anniversary Edition: The Definitive Guide to Natural Birth Control, Pregnancy Achievement, and Reproductive Health
Taking Charge of Your Fertility, 10th Anniversary Edition: The Definitive Guide to Natural Birth Control, Pregnancy Achievement, and Reproductive Health
"THE book on natural fertility.  A great guide to the fertility awareness method of family planning, and to conception once you are ready (or more than ready!) to start helping people the earth."
Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy
Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy
"Medically sound, easy to read, organized clearly and succinctly, and sensible.  Throw away your copy of "What to Expect When You're Expecting" (alarmist sexist fiddle-faddle!) and buy this one."
Our Bodies, Ourselves: Pregnancy and Birth
Our Bodies, Ourselves: Pregnancy and Birth
"On the second go-round, we used this one.  Great feminist take on the medicalization of pregnancy and childbirth."
Baby Bargains, 8th Edition: Secrets to Saving 20% to 50% on Baby Furniture, Gear, Clothes, Toys, Maternity Wear and Much, Much More! (Baby Bargains: ... on Baby Furniture, Equipment, Clothes, Toys,)
Baby Bargains, 8th Edition: Secrets to Saving 20% to 50% on Baby Furniture, Gear, Clothes, Toys, Maternity Wear and Much, Much More! (Baby Bargains: ... on Baby Furniture, Equipment, Clothes, Toys,)
"Craigslist should yield everything that your friends don't lend you, but use this as a guide for the things you have to buy new--there are lots of shoddy products out there."
The Birth Partner, Third Edition: A Complete Guide to Childbirth for Dads, Doulas, and All Other Labor Companions (Birth Partner: A Complete Guide to Childbirth for Dads, Doulas, &)
The Birth Partner, Third Edition: A Complete Guide to Childbirth for Dads, Doulas, and All Other Labor Companions (Birth Partner: A Complete Guide to Childbirth for Dads, Doulas, &)
"A practical, well-researched, empowering guide to labor, and in particular a guide to natural childbirth.  We followed many of this book's recommendations and ended up having a natural childbirth in the very unnatural environment of a research hospital. Good for you to read in your eighth and ninth month--or even better, for your partner to read during those months."
Caring for Your Baby and Young Child, Revised Edition: Birth to Age 5 (Shelov, Caring for your Baby and Young Child, Birth to Age 5)
Caring for Your Baby and Young Child, Revised Edition: Birth to Age 5 (Shelov, Caring for your Baby and Young Child, Birth to Age 5)
"Just what the title says.  We don't completely follow the American Academy of Pediatrics on childrearing philosophy, but it's a very good medical guide."
The Nursing Mother's Companion: Revised Edition
The Nursing Mother's Companion: Revised Edition
"Breastfeeding was harder than I expected.  This book helped.  Especially helpful was the index of medications and their safety during nursing."
Operating Instructions: A Journal of My Son's First Year
Operating Instructions: A Journal of My Son's First Year
"A must-read on parenting by an all-too-human single mom, and wonderfully funny writer.  Perfect for those first few weeks, when sleep deprivation turns all your neuroses into psychoses and you are sure you'll do something horrible, like let your baby get eaten by wild dingoes."
Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child
Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child
"This book helped us get our daughter on a regular sleep schedule early, and prevented many of the middle-of-the-night woes our friends told us about.  Highly recommended!"
The Expectant Father: Facts, Tips and Advice for Dads-to-Be, Second Edition
The Expectant Father: Facts, Tips and Advice for Dads-to-Be, Second Edition
"My husband really liked this one, since even the most gender-equal pregnancy books really are all about the woman's perspective.  This one is for and about men.  (Though I read it and liked it too.)"
The New Father: A Dad's Guide to the First Year
The New Father: A Dad's Guide to the First Year
"Same, but for infancy."
New First Three Years of Life: Completely Revised and Updated
New First Three Years of Life: Completely Revised and Updated
"This was one of the standouts for us.  The author talks in depth about development from 0 to 3 years old, including the truly appropriate toys and activities for each age and how to begin discipline in a healthy way.  If you buy no other book on this list, buy this one."
Raising a Happy, Unspoiled Child (How Parents Can Help Their Baby Develop Into a Secure and We)
Raising a Happy, Unspoiled Child (How Parents Can Help Their Baby Develop Into a Secure and We)
"By the same author, this is equally necessary.  White makes the point that most parents are naturally prone to spoil their children, and gives solid advice about how to avoid doing so."
Super Baby Food
Super Baby Food
"A good introduction to solid foods.  Though the writing and organization of this book are horrible, the content is really useful."
Shepherding a Child's Heart
Shepherding a Child's Heart
"The basic principle of this book is that parents need to aim, not at altering behavior, but at influencing the child's heart and inner disposition.  I can quibble with the details in this book (and also the ridiculous diagrams), but not with the root principle."
The New Dare to Discipline
The New Dare to Discipline
"Another book on the importance of proper discipline.  I'm not much of a real Dobson fan, at least since I outgrew "Preparing for Adolescence," but this one has valuable advice."
Parenting in the Pew: Guiding Your Children into the Joy of Worship
Parenting in the Pew: Guiding Your Children into the Joy of Worship
"For families with children a little older than ours, but still useful for planning and with plenty of sensible, wise advice."
Conceiving Parenthood: American Protestantism and the Spirit of Reproduction
Conceiving Parenthood: American Protestantism and the Spirit of Reproduction
"A really interesting meditation on American parenting by an incredible theologian and mother."
In the Midst of Chaos: Caring for Children as Spiritual Practice
In the Midst of Chaos: Caring for Children as Spiritual Practice
"How to understand family life--real family life, not the imaginary perfect life some books describe--as spiritual discipline."