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Recommendations for books on parenting and child development

(13 Posts)
addictedtodollymixtures Fri 19-Jun-09 10:50:19

I have a 6 week old DD and I'd like to read up on parenting, teething, weaning, development etc etc. There are so many books out there - what would you recommend?

misshardbroom Fri 19-Jun-09 14:01:20

well, my really honest answer is 'none of them'.

There's different bits of different books that are quite useful at different times, e.g. I found the Annabel Karmel 'Complete Baby and Toddler Mealplanner' a bit useful to start with, to give me ideas and guidelines (although now everyone's into BLW it's probably not that useful!)

But even now, if I have any particular child-related query or conundrum, the MN message boards are my first port of call. You can ask questions specific to your child and before you know it, 20 people have replied with good ideas or questions or suggestions.

IME, the books left me feeling as though my baby didn't fit some sort of blueprint, and as though I was doing it wrong. And they're generally soooooo humourless!

clemette Fri 19-Jun-09 14:06:40

I found "What to Expect in the First Year" quite helpful as it is quite comprehensive (just ignore the bits where it talks about mum's diet).
Kaz Cooke's Kidwrangling is also very accessible and often summarises all the different philosophies about parenting/routines etc.
Overall, though, you can't beat Penelope Leach's Your Baby and Child. Excellent, informative and gentle.

Bucharest Fri 19-Jun-09 14:08:27

Personally, Deborah Jackson and Dr Sears.
Kaz Cooke also makes you laugh, which can never be a bad thing.
Do NOT buy Miriam Stoppard. <bonkers emoticon>

<hijack, waves to Clemette>

clemette Fri 19-Jun-09 14:16:45

<waves back - have you read the Dawn Meehan book? Will lend it you when you come home; very funny>

Bucharest Fri 19-Jun-09 14:25:51


screamingabdab Fri 19-Jun-09 15:03:23

When the toddler years arrive, I'd recommend Tantrums, from the Last Straw Strategies series, by Michelle Kennedy.

Also in that series are Eating and Manners. All good, common sense, easy to dip into and non-judgemental.

The Best Friends guide to Toddlers will make you feel better as well.

BelleWatling Fri 19-Jun-09 15:08:45

I second the Penelope Leach. she just writes so beautifully - she just describes the whole process as blissful and creative, as a pleasure. Yes, I know it's not like that all the time but I prefer that to writers who treat babyhood/childhood/parenthood as a series of problems to be solved or conquered.

and she also describes a good balance between routine and attachment parenting - she is not extremely attached to one theory or the other.

BelleWatling Fri 19-Jun-09 15:10:30

Also props to you for being able to read a book with a 6 week old around!

clemette Fri 19-Jun-09 15:24:22

I found the early days the best time to read as the long breastfeeding sessions confined me to the sofa... I almost mourned when they started to take a full feed in ten minutes and grabbed for whatever book I had in my hand.

LauraN1 Fri 19-Jun-09 22:40:10

I second P. Leach and the "Baby Book" by Sears&Sears.

Also, look at this one:
The Science of Parenting by Margot Sunderland

misshardbroom Sat 20-Jun-09 08:18:00

Actually, can I put in a vote for Dr Christopher Green & 'Toddler Taming'??

I don't buy into his (IMO) slightly hardline 'rope the door shut' sleep training philosophy, but I do like how he tries to get the parent to see the world from the toddler's perspective, and that he has an attitude of 'this too will pass'.

screamingabdab Sun 21-Jun-09 20:05:53

mishardbroom I found his advice about eating very reassuring

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