Must-read pregnancy books

Pregnancy and birth. There are many billions of words to be read about these life-changing subjects.  Blogs, forums, websites, magazines and pregnancy books are all full of advice, fact and a fair bit of subjective nonsense. It is very easy to be utterly confused and bamboozled by it all. 

So, what and who to believe? As a newly pregnant woman or dad-to-be, you will soon come to realise that EVERYONE is an expert in carrying, birthing and bringing up baby. 

Here are our top 5 pregnancy books to read when you’re expecting, with all the answers to your questions or worries.

Our recommended pregnancy books

‘What to expect when you’re expecting’ by Heidi Murkoff

The best pregnancy book for first-time mums.
The old friend – no-nonsense, comprehensive and trusted. This is the pregnancy book that has been in print for what seems like forever. It is newly updated and is packed full of advice, tips and empathetic insight.

Check it out on Amazon

Key features:

  • Answers all the questions you have and then all those you haven’t thought of yet too
  • Keeps abreast of the newest pregnancy and birth advice, the latest trends and medical developments
  • A warm tone to the writing
  • It doesn’t take itself too seriously
  • Easy to navigate around the chapters’ index so you can find what you’re looking for easily.
  • Dads are included throughout not just ignored and given a small chapter at the back of the book.

“The Day by Day Pregnancy Book” by Dr Maggie Blott

A window on the womb.
This is the best pregnancy book to tell you what’s happening to your body, how your baby is developing and what they look like.

Check it out on Amazon

Key features:

  • A countdown from the moment of conception to your being overdue
  • Astonishing images of every stage of a baby’s development
  • Great for Dads who feel a little left out of the whole pregnancy thing. Understanding aids connection.
  • Fully updated editions to keep track of the latest advice from midwives and doctors
  • Q&A section answers all your questions in a clear, friendly tone
  • Fantastic ‘post-birth’ breakdown covering the first 12 hours after birth. So valuable, especially for first-time Mums
  • A section on the first two weeks of your baby’s life and what to expect.

The Yummy Mummy Guide by Liz Fraser

The funny and stylish best friend.
This is the pregnancy book that will make you laugh. Light-hearted and irreverent but serious where it needs to be. Funny pregnancy books are great to combine with more formal books on pregnancy.

Check it out on Amazon

Key features:

  • Laugh out loud funny
  • Written by a mum of three young children
  • A reassuring book for women worried they will ‘lose themselves’ in motherhood
  • Covers pregnancy and the first year of your child’s life
  • Honest and frank
  • A style guide for those who dread living in leggings forever more
  • A great gift for friends and family. Reviews all state that this has been shared and passed on from mother to mother, a great recommendation.

Fatherhood – The Truth

Without a doubt one of the best books on pregnancy for dads to be.
A book specifically for Dads. Many pregnancy books relegate them to the occasional comment or one chapter at the most.

Check it out on Amazon

Key features:

  • A funny, brutally honest book that is designed to reassure and inform
  • Delivers all the vital info in a funny, honest and practical way
  • Covers subjects from conception to the first year of baby’s life
  • The author speaks from personal experience
  • Gives the reader permission to be scared, overwhelmed and a bit left out
  • A fantastic gift and one that will be passed onto friends and family.

How to choose the best pregnancy books to read

The blue lines on the pregnancy test signal the start of a million questions for first-time mums. Where should you find the answers to the worries that occur at 3am? My go-to tome of knowledge would be a good pregnancy book. The best pregnancy books should be full of the following elements: 

  • Facts from midwives, doctors, health visitors and scientists 
  • Objective useful advice from people who’ve experienced the rollercoaster of new parenthood
  • A sense of humour 
  • The attitude that every mother, father and baby is different and there should be flexibility  
  • Honesty
  • An acknowledgement that baby books for dads should be ‘a thing’ too. 

Your life will soon become ALL about pregnancy and birth and babies. You will have random moments of panic, sudden urges to check on what your baby looks like in this week of your pregnancy (a pregnancy day-by-day book is perfect for this!) and the need to check that your baby shopping list has all that it should upon it. 

Good pregnancy books should have all the information you need in one place. Here are some of the other reasons why I would pick books about pregnancy over digital media.

  • A well-thumbed, much loved and trusted book in your handbag will help you feel calm and in control (Even when you’re not!)
  • It’s a keepsake to cherish. ESPECIALLY if it has suspicious stains from the very early days of parenthood
  • You’ll refer to your baby guidebook for the next child. By the time you’re on baby number two, it’s you who’s the expert but a little backup and fact checking won’t hurt
  • Reading your phone or iPad in the bath or before going to sleep doesn’t have the same comforting feel. Or maybe I’m just old fashioned!?

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