The top 10 baby books for mummies

Updated February 21, 2017

It's not unusual for mums to freak out about having to take care of a fragile little creature, who is totally reliant on mum and the rest of the family. Traditionally, a woman looked to her own mother for advice, but modern women also have access to other information sources like parenting books. On the one hand, research performed by the University of Warwick in 2012 found that the sheer amount of contradictory advice found in baby books can stress out mums, but extra information can indeed be helpful, if the information makes sense to mum.

Annabel Karmel's New Complete Baby & Toddler Meal Planner

The most popular book for mums on, as of June 2012, is Annabel Karmel's New Complete Baby & Toddler Meal Planner, which allows mums to plan out meals for their baby once she gets past the solely milk-drinking stage.

What to Expect When You're Expecting

A new mother might already have purchased "What to Expect When You're Expecting," but if she hasn't read it, this popular book contains more than just pregnancy information, and may still be useful when it comes to tips about new babies such as breastfeeding and sleep advice. In addition, if mum is planning to have another baby, she can also go back and read the rest of the book when baby number two is on the way.

The New Contented Little Baby Book

One of the giants of the baby book world is Gina Ford, and "The New Contented Little Baby Book" is one of her most popular books. Mums who prefer a strict routine-based approach to child-rearing might like this book, as it deals with ways to settle babies into sleep and eating routines.

The Essential First Year

Penelope Leach's book "The Essential First Year," is written from the perspective of how babies experience their new little lives, and how parents can understand what's going on in their baby's head when it comes to snoozing, eating and upsets.

Eco Baby

Part of the top ten parenting books as chosen by The Independent newspaper in 2012, "Eco Baby" is a book specifically aimed at parents who are passionate about the environment. So if a new mum recycles and keeps her carbon footprint to a minimum, she may find this book useful when it comes to choosing baby products and making her baby's tiny footprints even smaller on the planet.

The Baby Whisperer is the nickname of a maternity nurse called Tracy Hogg, who has built a reputation as a woman who can help interpret a baby's cries and non-verbal communication to help mum with stressful times. Although routine-based, the book does not advocate as much of a strict regimen as Gina Ford's book, for example.

Be a Great Single Parent

Number two on the Independent's list of top ten parenting books is a book specifically for single parents. If a mum is worried about raising her baby without strong involvement of the baby's father, "Be a Great Single Parent" can provide her with tips and reassurance on how the baby can thrive happily with one parent and grow into a contented teenager.

Your Baby Week By Week: The ultimate guide to caring for your new baby

"Your Baby Week By Week" is a book that follows on from the pregnancy development books. Written by Dr Caroline Fertleman and Simone Cave, the book devotes each chapter to one particular week of the baby's growth from birth, and provides specific information to help mum with the baby during that week.

With a foreword by Dr William Sears, the "The No-Cry Sleep Solution" book by Elizabeth Pantley offers tips and suggestions on a routine for a baby who has trouble sleeping calmly and regularly. Perhaps of interest to mothers who prefer not to let the baby cry herself to sleep, but also like the idea of a routine, the book provides mum with tools to analyse the specific sleep patterns of her baby so she can create a sleep plan.

Why Love Matters: How Affection Shapes a Baby's Brain

Written by Sue Gerhardt from a psychological as well as neurological point of view, "Why Love Matters" is a book about the longterm effects of love and attention in a baby's life. Mothers who like reading scientifically-based information may be interested in this book, as it outlines theories about the emotional attachment of mothers to their babies and asks questions such as whether letting a baby cry is damaging to their longterm emotional stability and security.

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About the Author

Jillian O'Keeffe has been a freelance writer since 2009. Her work appears in regional Irish newspapers including "The Connacht Tribune" and the "Sentinel." O'Keeffe has a Master of Arts in journalism from the National University of Ireland, Galway and a Bachelor of Science in microbiology from University College Cork.