Book Reviews


ACOG Guide to Planning for Pregnancy, Birth, and BeyondACOG

Clearly written from a very medical mindset. Good info if you want to compare home birth midwifery care or if you want to know how an OB would handle a situation.

Active Birth: The New Approach to Giving Birth NaturallyJanet Balaskas

This is a wonderful resource!  The information about what drugs are typically used in the hospital is outdated, but the rest of the book is excellent.  Has suggestions for how to stay mobile and active during labor and birth, etc.

BACH FLOWER ESSENCES Flower Essences Family BookWigmore Publications, Ltd.

A reference guide of flower essences and the emotional issues that they help with.

The Birth Partner, 4th Edition, Completely Revised and Updated: A Complete Guide to Childbirth for Dads, Doulas, and Other Labor CompanionsPenny Simkin

Excellent book for people wanting to "doula" for a laboring momma.  I really liked it but my husband thought the terminology was too technical for most men.

The Birthing HourTony Whitman

My husband wrote this book to help fathers figure out how they want to participate in their baby's birth.

Birthing the Easy Way By Someone Who Learned the Hard WaySheila Stubbs

Sheila has a range of birth experiences.  She talks about each and how it impacted her and her family.  She also compares the differences between them.  Would be a good read for someone on the fence about home birth.

Born in the USA: How a Broken Maternity System Must Be Fixed to Put Women and Children FirstMarsden Wagner

This is a difficult book to read for women who have been victims of the system. Every living person needs to read this and be aware of what is going on behind closed doors at the hospital.

Breastfeeing Your Baby
Sheila Kitzinger

I love this book.  It is simple and has a lot of pictures to help explain the text.  I highly recommend this book for families that are new to breastfeeding or who had problems in the past.

Circumcision Exposed: Rethinking a Medical and Cultural TraditionBilly Ray Boyd

Gives a very thorough explanation of how male and female circumcisions are done and the long lasting effects of each. Discusses the origins of the surgeries.

The Complete Homeopathy HandbookMiranda Castro

This book gives a good, but brief history of homeopathy, how to take a minor case and determine the proper remedy.  It includes a concise guide to common remedies.

The Complete Book of Pregnancy and Childbirth (Revised)Sheila Kitzinger

This is a great general info book.  Covers a very wide variety of pregnancy and birth related topics.  This is one of my favorites.

Do It Yourself Medical Testing
Cathy Pinckney & Edward R. Pinckney

Handy info for anyone who doesn't want to or can't afford to run to the doctor just to make sure they are healthy. Clear and easy instructions. It is an older book and I would love to see an updated version.

Emergency Childbirth: A ManualGregory White, MD

A quick reference guide on what to do if your midwife doesn't make it in time or if you can't make it to the hospital. Or if you would prefer an unassisted birth.

Gentle Birth ChoicesBarbara Harper, RN

Discusses many options that women have while they are in labor and during the birth of their baby.

Gentle Birth, Gentle Mothering: A Doctor's Guide to Natural Childbirth and Gentle Early Parenting ChoicesDr. Sarah J. Buckley

Covers many birth and parenting topics, discusses the differences in her births.

Homeopathy for Pregnancy, Birth, and Your Baby's First Year 2nd editionMiranda Castro

Gives good general explanations for how to use homeopathy. Includes a guide to remedies directly relating to pregnancy, birth and your new baby.

How to Raise a Healthy Child in Spite of Your DoctorRobert S. Mendelsohn, MD

Excellent book for explaining the philosophical reasons one might want to avoid the doctor unless absolutely necessary. A lot of confirmation for people who already have doubts.

The Maternity Sourcebook: 230 basic decisions for pregnancy, birth, and baby careWendy & Matthew Lesko

Was more medically minded than I was expecting. It is good for comparison between home birth and the medical model.

Mother Rising
Yana Cortlund, Barb Lucke, & Donna Miller Watelet

This is a great book for Blessingways or Mother Blessings. Lots of different ideas that can be incorporated or left out to completely customize the event for the mother.

Natural Childbirth After Cesarean: A Practical GuideKaris Crawford, PhD & Johanne Walters, BSN, RN

The book is fairly medically minded in general. One of the authors has a VBAC after an Inverted T.

The Nursing Mother's Companion, 4th Edition Revised
Kathleen Huggins, RN, MS

Has excellent "survival guides" for the difficult stages. Lots of good info here.

Pregnancy, Childbirth, and the Newborn (4th Edition): The Complete GuidePenny Simkin

This is the best pregnancy guide I have read so far. She explains things well. Not too medical.

Pregnancy Day by Day
Sheila Kitzinger

Fun day by day guide to pregnancy. Some mainstream info.

Reclaiming the Spirituality of Birth: Healing for Mothers and BabiesBenig Mauger

Mauger is a therapist that specializes in birth trauma. Chapter 6 is an excellent read for people that don't understand the importance of a gentle birth.

Taking Charge of Your Fertility, 20th Anniversary Edition: The Definitive Guide to Natural Birth Control, Pregnancy Achievement, and Reproductive HealthToni Weschler, MPH

An excellent guide to understanding your fertility cycles. Knowing what is normal and what is not.

What to Expect When You're Expecting
Heidi Markoff, Arlene Eisenberg, & Sandee Hathaway, BSN

This is a "How to be a Good Patient in the Hospital" manual.

Wise Woman Herbal for the Childbearing YearSusun Weed

Herbs for all female reproductive matters.