The Best Selling Pregnancy Books
The top 35 best selling pregnancy books may be popular, but they’re not all good. I know this because I read a lot of pregnancy literature, both consumer-oriented books and journals and books written for maternity care providers. Reading popular pregnancy books from my informed perspective reveals a good deal about how new parents are sometimes falsely informed by what they read. Best selling pregnancy books contain both opinion and fact, and are written in ways that mask the difference. Some books offer very meaningful preparation guidance while others choose trivial or ineffective content. I can help you sort the good from the bad as well as figure out which books meet your particular needs.
Some books on the Top 35 Best-Selling Pregnancy Book list do share wisdom that really will help you understand how to work with your body during birth. There is significant material addressing shifting roles, personal growth, relationships, the purpose and importance of parenting, and the needs of babies in some of the books. Unfortunately, the majority fall short. In order to help you find the books that are worth your time I wrote an article about what to read when you are pregnant. It introduces you to the topics that may be useful, helping you expand your thinking about what preparation entails and clarify what topics you really would most benefit from.
My reviews below of each of the top 35 best-selling pregnancy books utilize a rating system that will help you match these topics to books that address them well. The stars I’ve assigned to each book should help you know what that book focuses on and if it does a good job of presenting evidenced-based, empowering information. Reading my full review will give you an overview of the book’s content and a bit of my commentary on its accuracy and how to best use it.
How I Rated the Top 35 Best-Selling Pregnancy Books
When evaluating the top pregnancy books, this is my most important rating. Being empowered means: “to become stronger and more confident, especially in controlling your life and claiming your rights.” I also think of it in terms of practical skills – to become capable. I became capable of being a wonderful, effective birth attendant. I became capable of understanding my baby. This is what I believe most pregnancy books geared towards new families should do – teach you skills that will enable you to proactively optimize your own holistic health and promote optimal growth and development for your baby.
What I discovered while reviewing the top 35 best-selling pregnancy books was that they did an excellent job of pacifying the desire to be informed without truly educating. Many of the “best” pregnancy books are absolutely packed with information, but the type of information is just that – info. It’s not practically related to the work of parenting or birthing. Word choice and the emotional setting of the information were often patronizing. Anything that would remind a woman (or a man) of their inner strength or their real support-system in the world was often totally missing.
The result is an “education” that doesn’t build any real capacities, skills, or vision, and the reader is as equally dependent on doctors to direct their birthing and parenting as they were before they began the book. This model is not working. My blog post, United States Birth Outcomes, explains why. Luckily, there was a top pregnancy book now and then, those I truly to consider the best pregnancy books, that broke through like a shining light and offered a wealth of applicable counsel. Those will be found easily by looking for five stars for “Empowered.”
Healthier, Happier, or Prepared for Birth5
These stars help you see, at a glance, on what topic the book is really focused. Some of the top 35 best-selling pregnancy books are really focused on health, promoting information such as nutrition, exercise, or positive birth outcomes. These rank high in the healthier category. Others are written for entertainment, sharing common human experience, or emphasizing self-care and emotional health. These books have stars in the “happier” category. And finally, some best-selling pregnancy books focus on pregnancy, while others focus on labor and birth. If a book contains good, effective advice on labor and birth, it will have many stars in the prepared for birth ranking. Some of the top pregnancy books address all three topics, while others really are written specifically for one type of information or another. A lack of stars in two areas, with a third area really shining, doesn’t signify a weak book, but rather a good pregnancy book with a strong focus.
The Top 35 Best-Selling Pregnancy Books
That’s a lot of books! If you’ve made it this far, you are truly dedicated!
There are some solid, all-around picks among the top 35 best-selling pregnancy books of 2015, and many that address specific issues or attempt to lighten your mood. Choose some that feel right for you.
May your pregnancy and birth be filled with blessings!
The Top 35 Best-Selling Pregnancy Books list is ordered by the popularity of the books. The popularity is measured by sales volume of each title (combining digital and print editions). The books selling in highest volume will be at the top of the list.
Because the relative popularity of books shifts through time, this list is a work in progress. Our goal is to keep it updated as much as possible as new pregnancy books are released and others become outdated and less popular. The freshness of the Best-Selling Pregnancy Book list is evident by the date it was last updated at the top.