Recommended Book List

The following books address topics that include pregnancy, birth, newborns, breastfeeding, nutrition, child-rearing and much more. These books share natural and holistic elements in their philosophies. It is nearly impossible for me to condense the list of books in each category, so I have put an * next to my favorite of favorites. Some of these will be readily available at any public library or for purchase from Amazon or your favorite local book store.


Adoption: A Handful of Hope
Author: Suzanne Arms Wimberly
Lost and Found
Author: Betty Jean Lifton
The Chosen Baby
Author: Valentina P. Wasson


These are all great. I’d check them out at the library and then pick the one that feels right for your family. I recommend that one of these books grace your bookshelf in the future.

*The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding
By: Le Leche League International – Latest Edition
ISBN# 0-452-27908-9
Total guide to infant & childcare fully illustrated. Explains breastfeeding support, recognizing and solving breastfeeding problems, expressing your milk, solid foods, etc.
*Medications and Mothers Milk: A Manual of Lactational Pharmacology (Medications And Mothers Milk)
Author: Thomas Hale
ISBN#   978-0982337998 or most recent updated version
A reference book listing drugs and their risk level for pregnancy & lactation.
The Breastfeeding Mother’s Guide to Making More Milk: Foreword by Martha Sears, RN (Breastfeeding Mothers Guide)
Author: Diana West & Lisa Marasco
ISBN# 978-0071598576
Breastfeeding Your Baby-revised edition
Author: Sheila Kitzinger
The complete guide for every new mother or mother-to-be who seeks the knowledge, encouragement, and self-confidence to breastfeed her baby.
The New Bestfeeding, Getting Breastfeeding Right For You
Author: Suzanne Arms, Mary Renfrew and Chloe Fisher
The culmination of exhaustive research and decades of hands-on experience from 3 extraordinarily dedicated and internationally respected authors who bring a blend of academic knowledge, clinical expertise and practical skills to the book. Dozens of helpful photos & drawings that demonstrate all the Do’s and Don’ts of breastfeeding.
*The Ultimate Breastfeeding Book of Answers
Author: Jack Newman, MD and Teresa Pitman
ISBN# 978-0307345585
The most comprehensive problem-solution guide to breastfeeding from the foremost expert in North America. Every mother’s personal lactation consultant.
Mothering Your Nursing Toddler
Author: Baumgarten


Nursing Mothers’ Guide to Weaning
Author: Kathleen Huggins
The book goes through reasons a mother may want to wean, and then gives suggestions on how not to wean.

Cesarean Prevention

Understanding the Dangers of Cesarean Birth: Making Informed Decisions
Author: Nicette Jukelevics
*Silent Knife
Author: Nancy Wainer Cohen and Lois Estner
ISBN# 0-89789-027-2
Open Season: Survival Guide for Natural Childbirth and VBAC* in the 1990’s
Author: Nancy Wainer Cohen
ISBN# 0-89789-252-6
The aim of this book is to lower America’s shockingly high cesarean section rate, to increase the number of VBACs, and, most importantly, to reawaken women to the positive nature of pregnancy and childbirth. Cohen also shares her knowledge about other unnecessary interventions, such as fetal monitoring, intravenous feeding, and drug administration. A much anticipated sequel to Silent Knife.

Childcare & Parenting

 I recommend you have at least one book on hand for those middle of the night questions & cry sessions!

*The Baby Book, Everything You Need to Know About Your Baby-From Birth to Age 2
Author: William Sears, M.D. & Martha Sears, R.N.
ISBN# 0-316-77905-9
How to Raise A Healthy Child In Spite Of Your Doctor
Author: Robert Mendelson M.D.
ISBN# 0-345-34276-3
Puts parents back in control of their children’s health care. Controversial, but helpful to see other perspectives.
The No-Cry Sleep Solution
Author: Elizabeth Pantley
Gentle ways to help your baby sleep through the night. Also a much better alternative to the rigid Ferber method.
Homeopathic Medicine for Children and Infants
Author: Dana Ullman M.P.H.
ISBN# 0-87477-692-9
The Family Bed
Author: Tine Thevenin
ISBN# 0-89529-357-9
Three in a Bed: The Benefits of Sharing Your Bed With Your Baby
Author: Deborah Jackson
ISBN# 1-58234-051-X
*Magical Child
Author: Joseph Chilton Pearce
ISBN# 0-452-26789-7
Evolutions End
Author: Joseph Chilton Pearce
Backtalk: 4 Steps to Ending Rude Behavior in Your Kids
Author: Audrey Ricker, Ph.D., and Carolyn Crowder, Ph.D.
ISBN# 0-684-84124-X
Positive Discipline
Author: Jane Nelsen, Ed.D
ISBN# 0-345-34856-7
Whole Child / Whole Parent
Author: Polly Berrien Berends
ISBN# 0-06-091427-0
Attachment Parenting: Instinctive Care For Your Baby and Young Child
Author: Katie Allison Granju, with Betsy Kennedy, R.N., M.S.N.
ISBN# 0-671-02762-X
*Mothering Magazine
P.O. Box 1690
Santa Fe, NM 87504-9774
(800) 984-8116

Coaching & Fathering

 The Birth Partner
Author: Penny Simkin
Everything you need to know to help a woman through childbirth. Excellent resource book. Does have some Lamaze breathing techniques that need to be weeded through, however. Enjoyed by every father who has read it.
Husband Coached Childbirth
Author: Robert A. Bradley, MD
Pregnancy all the way through breastfeeding explained by Dr. Bradley himself.

Evidence Based Care

*Obstetric Myths Versus Research Realities
Author: Henci Goer
ISBN# 0-89789-427-8
A guide to the medical literature. Their OWN research sheds light on common practices & beliefs within obstetrics. I wish every doctor would read this book. How can they deny their own research? I don’t know, but they routinely do. Is obstetrics an art or science? Your answer may not be the same after reading through this book.
Pushed: The Painful Truth About Childbirth and Modern Maternity Care
Author:  Jennifer Block
ISBN#: 978-0738211664
Episiotomy: Challenging Obstetric Interventions
By: Ian Graham Ph.D.
ISBN# 0-632-04145-5
This book traces the introduction, routinization and questioning of episiotomy in the US and the UK, it identifies and explores the medical and non-medical factors responsible for changing obstetrics and midwifery thinking and the use of this procedure.


Taking Charge of Your Fertility: The Definitive Guide to Natural Birth Control, Pregnancy Achievement, and Reproductive Health
By: Toni Weschler, MPH
ISBN# 0-06-039406-4

Loss of A Child

Waiting with Gabriel: A Story of Cherishing a Baby’s Brief Life 
Author: Amy Kuebelbeck
Empty Cradle, Broken Heart: Surviving the Death of Your Baby 
Author: Deborah L. Davis
Finding Hope When a Child Dies
Author: Sukie Miller
The Gift of Time: Continuing Your Pregnancy with a Terminal Prenatal Diagnosis 
Author: Amy Kuebelbeck and Deborah L. Davis 
Miscarriage: Women Sharing From the Heart
Author: Marie Allen and Shelly Marks
When Pregnancy Fails: Families Coping With Miscarriage, Stillbirth, and Infant Death
Author: Susan Borg and Judith Lasker
Surviving Pregnancy Loss
Author: Rochelle Friedman, M.D. and Bonnie Gradstein, MPH
 A Silent Sorrow
Author: Ingrid Kohn, M.S. W. and Perry-Lynn Moffit with Isabelle Wilkins
Ended Beginnings: Healing Childbearing Losses
Author: Claudia Panuthos and Cathy Romeo
I Cry Alone: Solace After the Death of a Child
Author: Pamela Truscott

Medical & Health

The American Way of Birth
Author: Jessica Mitford
A fascinating anthropological study about how and under what circumstances Americans give birth.
Birth: The Surprising History of How We Are Born
Author: Tina Cassidy
ISBN# 978-0802143242
The Medical Delivery Business: Health Reform, Childbirth, and the Economic Order
Author: Barbara Bridgman Perkins
Heart and Hands
Author: Elizabeth Davis
A Midwife’s guide to pregnancy and birth.
*Baby Catcher: Chronicles of a Modern Midwife
Author: Peggy Vincent
ISBN# 0-7432-1933-3
Menopausal Years – The Wise Woman Way
Author: Susan S. Weed
Alternative approaches for women 30-90.
The Female Brain
Author: Louann Brizendine
ISBN# 978-0767920100


*Nourishing Traditions
Author: Sally Fallon
ISBN# 0-96708973-5
What Every Pregnant Woman Should Know: The Truth About Diet and Drugs in Pregnancy
Author: Gail Sforza Brewer with Thomas H. Brewer, M.D.
Diet myths are dispelled and little known facts are revealed. If you’re diagnosed with, or afraid of toxemia, pre-eclampsia or eclampsia, you NEED to read this book.
Nutrition Almanac 4th ed.
Author: Gayla J. Kirschmann & John D. Kirshmann
ISBN# 0-07-034922-3
The Family Nutrition Book
Author: William Sears, M.D., and Martha Sears, R.N.
ISBN# 0-316-77715-3

Pregnancy & Childbirth

Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth
Author: Ina May Gaskin
Ina May Gaskin is the nation’s leading midwife, running a renowned birthing community in Tennessee, called The Farm. Everything you need to know to have the best birth experience for you – whether in a hospital, birthing center, or the comfort of home. The first ½ of the book is entirely positive, empowering birth stories. The second ½ is full of good, practical information that I have not seen elsewhere.
The Birth Book, Everything You Need to Know to Have a Safe and Satisfying Birth
Author: William Sears M.D., and Martha Sears R.N.
ISBN# 0-316-77907-5
Everything you need to know to have a safe & satisfying birth. Practical advice needed to plan a safe & joyful birthing experience.
Birthing From Within
Author: Pam England, CNM, MA & Rob Horowitz, PhD
ISBN# 0-9659873-0-2
A new, extraordinary approach to childbirth education. Gives insight about what labor and birth will be like from her perspective, and preparation to be in labor and give birth as a mother, not as a trained para-professional.
Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way
Author: Susan McCutheon-Rosegg
ISBN# 0-452-27659-4
Complete book on pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, etc.
HypnoBirthing A Celebration of Life: A Definitive Guide For Easier, Safer, More Comfortable Birthing
Author: Marie F. Mongan, M. Ed., M.Hy.
ISBN# 0-9663517-1-1
The Thinking Woman’s Guide to a Better Birth
Author: Henci Goer
ISBN# 0-399-52517-3
Where Obstetrical Myths vs. Research Realities often left the lay person in the dust of medical research, The Thinking Woman’s Guide puts this same as well as updated, research into an easily understood format for families.
Active Birth
Author: Janet Balaskas
In ‘Active Birth’ a mother moves about freely, finds comfortable positions for labor and delivery and seldom needs drugs or obstetrical interventions. This book teaches modern mothers to develop all of their bodily resources for giving birth, to follow their own instincts, and to take full control of the childbirth experience.
Gentle Birth, Gentle Mothering: A Doctor’s Guide to Natural Childbirth and Gentle Early Parenting Choices
Author: Sarah Buckley & Ina May Gaskin
ISBN #: 978-1587613227
Birth Reborn
Author: Michel Odent, M.D.
How childbirth can be what women want it to be & how mothers & babies both benefit from the experience. Written by the doctor who pioneered underwater birth in Pithivers, France.
The Complete Book of Pregnancy & Childbirth
Author: Sheila Kitzinger
Great pictures. Includes a week by week guide on baby’s development prenatally.
Our Bodies, Ourselves: Pregnancy and Birth
Author: Judi Norsigian
ISNB# 0743274865
The Doula Book – How a Trained Labor Companion Can Help You Have a Shorter, Easier, and Healthier Birth
Author: Marshall H. Klaus, MD, John H. Kennell, MD, Phyllis H. Klaus, CSW, MFT
ISBN# 0-7382-0609-1
An update of the classic, Mothering the Mother.
A Child Is Born
Author: Lennart Nilsson
ISBN# 0-385-30237-1
Nilsson is a medical and scientific photographer that brings us full color photographs and descriptions of the journey from fertilization to birth.
From Conception To Birth: A Life Unfolds
Author: Alexander Tsiaras & Barry Werth
ISBN# 0-385-50318-0
The splendor and beauty of a child’s growth and development in the womb – seen through unforgettable images made possible by revolutionary advances in visualization technology.

Sibling Preparation

Mom & Dad & I are Having a Baby
Author: Maryann P. Malecki, RN
A book for children about childbirth written from a child’s perspective. Line illustrations.
I Watched my Brother Being Born: Including Children At Birth
Author: Anne Vondruska
ISBN #: 978-1412072779
Welcome With Love
Author: Jenni Overend
A heartwarming description of a family’s participation in a home birth.

Twins / Multiples

National Organization of Mother’s With Twins Clubs, Inc.
Having Twins And More: A Parent’s Guide to Multiple Pregnancy, Birth, and Early Childhood
Author: Elizabeth Noble, Leo Sorger, and Louis G. Keith
ISBN# 978-0618138739
Mothering Multiples: Breastfeeding and Caring for Twins or More! (La Leche League International Book)
Author: Karen Kerkhoff Gromada
ISBN# 978-0976896937
When You’re Expecting Twins, Triplets, or Quads: Proven Guidelines for a Healthy Multiple Pregnancy
Author: Dr. Barbara Luke & Tamara Eberlein
ISBN# 978-0061803079

Vaccinations / Immunizations

The issue of vaccinations has been found to be contraversal for some people.  In order to provide you information about the controversial vaccine movement, these books are suggested for your reference only.  The decision to vaccinate is a personal one and this list is not intended to influence you one way or another. Remember to become well informed, objective, and to do your research.

*The Vaccine Book: Making the Right Decision for Your Child (Sears Parenting Library)
Author: Robert Sears
ISBN#: 978-0316017503
Vaccines:  A Thoughtful Parent’s Guide
Author: Aviva Jill Romm
The Vaccine Guide Risks and Benefits for Children and Adults (Revised Edition)
Author: Randell Neustaedter OMD
ISBN# 1-55643-423-5
The Vaccine Guide is an excellent resource, providing the latest, most up-to-date, unbiased information for parents and physicians as they make decisions on safe immunization practices.
Mothering Special Edition:
Vaccination: The Issue of our Times
Author: O’Mara ed.
Mothering Resource Library
ISBN# 0-914257-17-x
The Sanctity of Human Blood: Vaccination is not Immunization
Author: Tim O’Shea
Vaccination and Immunization: Dangers, Delusions, and Alternatives (What Every Parent Should Know)
Author: Leon Chaitow
A Shot in the Dark: Why the “P” in DPT May Be Hazardous to Your Child
Author: Harris L. Coulter and Barbara L. Fisher
(*Note: The US no longer administers the DPT rather the a-cellular DTaP which has fewer adverse effects)



Dr. Jack Newman’s Visual Guide to Breastfeeding
Dr. Jack Newman and Edith Kernerman IBCLC – 2005 – 45 min.
This video is designed to make the breastfeeding experience a success and pleasure for mothers and babies.  A wide variety of questions are answered from how to ensure that a baby is getting milk to helping overcome some of the most common problems associated with breastfeeding. 


Prenatal Yoga (2007)
Shiva Rea – 70 minutes
Shiva Rea: Postnatal Yoga (2005)
Shiva Rea – 100 minutes
Yoga For Mom And Baby: A Postnatal Yoga Workout With Your Baby
Ann Richmond – 45 minutes
Infant Care
The Happiest Baby on the Block: The New Way to Calm Crying And Help Your Baby Sleep Longer (2003)
Harvey Karp, MD – 128 minutes
Great gentle ways to trigger the baby’s calming reflex.

Pregnancy & Birth

Born in the USA
PBS Documentary Special – 2001 – 1 hour
The Business of Being Born (2008)
Director Abby Epstein’s controversial documentary takes a hard look at America’s maternity care system, juxtaposing hospital deliveries against the growing popularity of at-home, natural childbirths that many expectant parents are now opting for. Former talk show host Ricki Lake was inspired to produce this compelling exposé after a dissatisfying birthing experience with her first child left her with many unanswered questions – 87 minutes
Orgasmic Birth (2008)
Debra Pascali-Bonaro – 85 minutes
It’s My Body, My Baby, My Birth
An educational childbirth film that tells the story of 7 mothers and their emotional journeys to natural childbirth.
Birth Into Being – The Russian Waterbirth Experience
Global/Maternal Child Health – 1999 – 28 minutes
A Russian Spiritual Midwife, and her filmmaker husband, recorded 5 totally natural, incredible waterbirths. Original footage takes you to witness families birthing in the Black Sea and into their home to see the birth of their own babies in a hand made clear birthing pool. Scenes of children and babies swimming with dolphins will amaze you.
Gentle Birth Choices
Barbara Harper – 46 minutes
Brilliantly demonstrates the power of a woman during childbirth.
Natural Born Babies: A Modern Day Viewpoint
24 minutes
Giving Birth: Challenges & Choices
Suzanne Arms – 1998 – 35 minutes
If you ever plan to have a baby or care about someone who will, this video takes you on a magical journey, one that may change your life. This video shows what is possible for 95% of all mothers and babies who can, and should birth normally.
Birth Day
Naoli Vinaver Lopez – 66 minutes
Siblings at Birth
National Geographic – In The Womb (2005)
Toby MacDonald – 120 minutes
National Geographic – In The Womb – Multiples (2006)
Lorne Townend – 90 minutes

Main Resource Page

Comments are closed, but trackbacks and pingbacks are open.