Best Pregnancy Books

Best Pregnancy Books for Expectant Mothers

The Thinking Woman's Guide to a Better Birth - Henci GoerThinking Woman's Guide to A Better Birth - Henci Goer

This book is a must-have for all pregnant women.  It will inform and empower you on the true risks and benefits of interventions during birth as well as preparing you on your journey into motherhood.  If you choose only one book, this should be it.

Ina May's Guide to Childbirth - Ina May GaskinIna May's Guide to Childbirth - Ina May Gaskin

This book begins with an empowering collection of birth stories that will have you yearning to hold your own babe.  It then moves into a well-referenced factual information for pregnancy and childbirth.  She explores the mind-body connection thoroughly.

Childbirth Without Fear - Michael Odent & Grantly Dick-ReadChildbirth Without Fear - Michael Odent & Grantly Dick-Read

This book is based on the works of Dr. Grantly Dick-Read, the father of natural childbirth, who challenged the myth that a natural birth must be a painful one.  He helped guide childbirth out of the twilight sleep era and into the modern approach to a natural birth.  Dr. Michael Odent was a traditional obstetrician who became inspired   by natural waterbirth and left his practice to turn to the field of homebirth.

Natural Childbirth the Bradley WayNatural Childbirth the Bradley Way - Susan McCutcheon-Rosegg

This book is a companion to the Bradley Method, or Husband Coached Childbirth.  It offers great detail on becoming an informed birth consumer by learning your options and how to plan the birth that best suits your situation.

The Pregnancy Book - William & Martha Sears
The Pregnancy Book - William & Martha Sears

Anything by Dr. Sears is a great preparation tool for childbirth and parenting.  His books offer solid, evidence-based information for family centered care.

Spiritual Midwifery - Ina May Gaskin
Spiritual Midwifery - Ina May Gaskin

This book emphasizes the baby's role in being born as well as the emotional aspect of birth.  It will inspire and empower you as it is filled with positive affirmations of birth.  It is written in "hippyish" language that speaks to the era in which it was written.  Still, it remains a timeless read.

Birthing from Within - Pam EnglandBirthing from Within - Pam England

This is a collection of supplements to Birthing from Within classes that offers numerous exercises and activities to help mothers and parents be in contact with their bodies and feelings.

Obstetric Myths Versus Research Realities - Henci GoerObstetric Myths Versus Research Realities - Henci Goer

This book is a heavier read for those left-brained number crunchers.  If you are looking for a detailed, analytical approach to pregnancy and childbirth, then this is the book for you.

The Birth Book - William & Martha SearsThe Birth Book - William & Martha Sears

Yet another home-run for the Sears family.  This book offers many insights into childbirth to prepare you along the way.

natural childbirth after cesarean section    Natural Childbirth After Cesarean: A Practical Guide

A great resource guide to planning a natural childbirth after a cesarean section.

While the "What to Expect.." volumes are a popular series, they are not included in our list.  They provide a good overview of pregnancy and birth issues; however we find that they lack a balanced perspective on the risks of common practices and procedures which is essential knowledge for true informed consent during pregnancy and giving birth. As such, they do not appear on our list of must-read pregnancy books.

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