What to Expect When You Are Expecting by Heidi Murkoff is perhaps the quintessential baby book for mom’s to be (there are over 14.5 million copies in print). Some even say this book is the pregnancy bible…but I personally wouldn’t go that far. Murkoff is both comprehensive and helpful as she writes about each stage of pregnancy and any/every complication, plus a section for dad’s and multiples. But, while I think this is a great book to have in the library, I think for the modern-day woman signing up for weekly updates on babycenter.com is both easier and preferable.
Now, the follow-up book What to Expect the First Year is one of the most helpful books I ever read. Seriously, maybe the best $40 I spent on preparing for our baby to come. Call it new mom anxiety, but I consulted this one pretty much every day after our first child came. This book is extremely practical and useful. It even gives you diagrams about how to get your babies clothes on without anyone getting hurt! Somehow, Murkoff manages to write in such a way that even when reading about sick babies or things that are extremely concerning to a new mom, a sense of panic and doom doesn’t hover over the reader. (Unlike googling your babies symptoms which may send you into a complete panic)! She addresses the physical and emotional needs of both mom and baby (and siblings and dad) and her advice seems to be really well validated in actual research (versus many other books out there that are completely based on popular opinion and marketing) and has really stood the test of time. Read it for yourself and give one to a friend. You won’t regret it.