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The Baby Book, Revised Edition: Everything You Need to Know About Your Baby from Birth to Age Two (Sears Parenting Library) Paperback – 7 Feb 2013

4.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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  • The Baby Book, Revised Edition: Everything You Need to Know About Your Baby from Birth to Age Two (Sears Parenting Library)
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Product description

About the Author

William Sears, MD, has practiced pediatrics for more than 40 years, and is an associate clinical professor at the University of California, Irvine, School of Medicine. Martha Sears is a registered nurse and parenting and health consultant. They are the authors of more than 30 books and live in southern California. Robert W. Sears, MD, is a board-certified pediatrician in private practice in southern California. James Sears, MD, is a board-certified pediatrician and co-host of "The Doctors."

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Product details

  • Paperback: 784 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown US; Rev Upd edition (7 February 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316198269
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316198264
  • Product Dimensions: 18.7 x 4.1 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #17,403 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

By Pal_N on 14 August 2016
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book literally saved us from all the myths and old housewife's practices.. It's genuinely a baby bible
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By Tej on 17 August 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Indispensable! Period.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Good guide, helpful.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)

Amazon.com: 4.6 out of 5 stars 338 reviews
186 of 202 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not a bad book - but it is very one-sided should not be the only baby care book that you read. 5 July 2015
By TC - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am about halfway through this tome on baby rearing. I've read the infant-specific sections but have skipped over many of the toddler sections for now. After digesting all that I have read so far, I have some mixed feelings about the book. The more I read, the more I realize that this is really just one man's very strong opinion on how to raise an infant seemingly based on his experience watching his wife raise their 8 children (his book focuses 90% of the time of the mother's role). He is also a pediatrician to his credit - though he states that you should never ask pediatricians parenting advice, that's not what they are trained in in medical school. While he claims that all his assertions have been researched, most are stated as a personal opinion.

My biggest complaint with the book, is many of practices he advocates seem like they would be very hard to follow for anyone who doesn't have a flexible work schedule in which they were able to spend significant amounts of time with their child during the day and night. I've posted some of the themes that will be repeated and restated throughout this book time and time again. Consider how realistic it will be for you to follow these themes before purchasing this book. As other reviewers have stated, I could see someone feeling a great deal of guilt and failure as a parent if this was the only baby book you read and tried to follow.

Consider this book if:
1) You are the child's birth mom. The book offers very little advice for dads and almost all the advice involves "supporting your wife" by stepping in to give her a break while she does the bulk of the care. See point 2 for adoptive moms.
2) You are planning on breastfeeding - and I don't mean, pumping. Bottles are tolerated in this book (eventually) but not in any way shape or form embraced. If you are an adoptive mom there is a section for you on how to breastfeed. However, it takes 1 month of advance preparation and then can take several times of day of pretend breastfeeding for 4 months to finally produce a minimal supply of breast milk (not enough to actually provide the baby with adequate nutrition). That is, if it works at all. There are also options of jerry-rigging dad to "breastfeed" if mom is not around.
3) You have the means to make the baby your priority 24/7 for a significant period of time. If you can't afford to stay at home with the baby or are the kind of person who WANTS to go back to work after having a baby your first recommendation will you to find a job in which you can take the baby to work with you. More specifically, the advice is to *wear* the baby at work with you in a sling. Keeping an infant in a sling is Sears' advice to pretty much everything. Clean houses for a living? Great, wear the baby in a sling to work and carry on! Your employer will admire your dedication. Your job won't let you wear your baby to work? Maybe try to find a different one. Get invited to a black tie affair? Bring the three-month-old along in a sling, everyone in the room with be impressed with your mad baby-wearing skills. Have a speech to deliver for 150 professionals or getting interviewed on television? No problem, stick that little sucker in its sling and carry on. If the baby starts to fuss, you can easily breastfeed from the sling while on TV. The black tie affair, speech and TV interviews actual examples from the book of things the doctor's wife has done over the years.
4) Following point 3 - babywearing in a sling is a must for you during your waking hours. Not just you actually. If you have a child care provider, you should insist that they also wear the baby for *at least* 3 hours out of the day.
5) Cosleeping in your bed is a must for you. Chapter after chapter talks about sharing a bed with your infant. There is very little discussion of other options except in one small section of the book. Eventually, Sears will tell you not to feel guilty if you can't cosleep but after reading chapter after chapter where the only option he talks about is cosleeping, it's too little too late.
6) You have expendable income. A few more bits of practical advice from the book: Your birthing experience will be so much better if you hire a doula or midwife. Getting a housekeeper will give you more time to worry about the baby and not the dirty toilet. Not working will allow you to breastfeed on demand for at least the first two years of your child's life (although you might want to consider taking 3 years off in case your child isn't fully ready to wean until age three).

As you can see this book offers one very specific and very intensive parenting style. It's not so much that I disagree with the bulk of the ideas - I do plan to breastfeed, have a sling ready to go for baby wearing and I'm lucky to be able to take an extended time off work to spend with the baby - it's just that so many of these points are belabored over and over and over again section while alternatives are lumped together and given lip service in one chapter. I am glad that I have this book as a reference but I would not want it to be my only reference. I think most parents would benefit from having another, more objective and comprehensive baby book to complement this one, especially if someone other than the breastfeeding mom wants something to read. Someone gave my husband the Baby Owner's Manual which he has found straightforward and useful. I've also ordered the Mayo Clinic: Guide to Your Baby's First Year as I liked their pregnancy guide and have heard that book is similar.

Full disclosure, I'm about to be a first time mom, so I haven't put any of these child-rearing theories to the test. I'm just trying to learn as much as possible before the baby comes so I can find a strategy that works best for me. This book certainly offers up one such strategy and I do not regret having read it; however, I would not consider it a stand-alone resource. I do feel like it is priced very reasonably considering its heft and has enough useful sections that it has a place in my library.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Just OK 2 March 2017
By Kristen - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book seems to be heavily based on opinion and their experiences as parents, not so much on scientific evidence. Even when they mention medical research there are no citations provided. Another thing I didn't much like about this book is it recommends mothers in particular constantly be with their baby and it doesn't seem realistic to me. It suggests wearing your baby all day, even to work as if that's an option for most working women, sleeping with your baby, breastfeeding on demand, etc. It's just not realistic for most people to constantly have their baby attached to them no matter how willing you are it's just not possible. It really bothers me how the book always leaves it up to the mother to carry out all of the responsibilities as if dad simply exists somewhere in the background and is 90% hands off. I also feel like they use this book to advertise their countless other books. It's a bit irritating to be constantly referred to another book they have written. Finally, I wish the book was arranged differently. I wish it started with newborns and worked up to toddlers. I find myself reading all this information I won't be needing for a couple of years when I really need to be reading about newborns. The book isn't all bad, it does provide some convincing arguments for parenting styles and good information about age appropriate eating and such. I also like the column format of the pages, it makes reading such a lengthy book much less daunting.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My informed friends open the package and their faces light up in delight - "I've been WANTING this" they often say 28 September 2016
By Dawn Trygstad Rubin - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is the gift I give to ALL my friends who have babies! I'm sure I've bought at least 25 of them. My informed friends open the package and their faces light up in delight - "I've been WANTING this" they often say. Those who weren't familiar with the book before pregnancy and birth make a point of calling me after they get through those initial first sleepless months to tell me something like "Before I saw my baby smile this book was the only thing that got me through a few moments of wondering if I'd made the biggest mistake of my life. The book told me ______ (fill in the blank - e.g. that it's normal to have a growth spurt at 6 weeks and all babies need to eat every hour for that one week and that it won't last forever, how using a sling makes life easier for baby and parents, how to hold the baby in a "clock" hold to stop the crying at the crabby hour, etc.)." The book restores and builds parent confidence so that the love helps babies thrive and families be happy.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Liked it so much we bought two copies. 5 December 2014
By Jenna Bowman - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book has been such a great help. As first time parents my husband and I would have been pretty lost without some help, and this has saved our parents from midnight phone calls or having to consult the dreaded Dr. Google (cause really, who doesn't absolutely overreact anytime you google health concerns?)

The Sears family is very pro-attachment parenting, and while a previous reviewer stated this was aimed at upper-middle class, I disagree. I think the authors are pretty considerate that not all facets of attachment parenting are suitable to all families and all situations. They have suggestions for how to make it work, or how to part-time AP if both parents have to work, because I think the ideal for AP is that one parent stay home with the baby. (Obviously that's hardly how the world works for most of us.)

My favorite parts of this book are that it helped me to learn about the developmental milestones at different ages and the "Self-help Home Care" section, which has helped to keep me from freaking out over coughs and fevers.

We liked it so much that we recently bought it for some close friends of ours who are expecting because we know they share a similar parenting philosophy.
4.0 out of 5 stars Hmm 11 June 2016
By ex - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Good information and I will be referring back quite a bit.

Two things I did not like:
- the constant plug for other books. If I buy a manual I expect complete information, not a note to refer to another book
- the suggestion that if you need a dual income you consider borrowing so there can be a stay at home parent (mom of course). Not great long term planning that ...